Community-Minded Television is expanding its offerings over cable television Channel 14 with a new spacious studio.
For a decade, CMTV14 has given viewers a grass-roots look at the Spokane region with community-access programming.
The cable station and small studio were formerly housed in the Saranac Building on West Main Avenue. Now, the new studio, which opened in January, has elbow room.
The 3,000-square-foot space at Browne Street and Third Avenue has been upgraded with new overhead lighting, editing equipment, software, a sound-proof recording booth, additional work stations and a new training and outreach program.
“Our goal for the channel is to get more local programming that would be of greater interest to the community,” said Nancy Schaefer, director of finance and operations for Community-Minded Enterprises, which operates CMTV14.
The public-access channel is part of the lineup of community-based cable offerings that include education and government channels.
About $88,000 in revenue from cable fees was used for the CMTV14 move.
Gary Edwards, a longtime Spokane musician, was at the studio Tuesday to learn how to use new editing software.
He was working on a slideshow program called Artist Showcase that will feature images from different artists set to original music.
“I love CMTV,” Edwards said. “It’s a great opportunity.”
Earlier this week, the studio was working on a promo for a new talk show called “Inbox with Jonathan and Sergey.” That show was previously heard on radio.
“It’s going to be fun. It’s very good,” said Ben Cabildo at CMTV14.
Last week, the studio started a new series of workshops to expand access and skills for community members who want to become involved in film and programming.
The AltLens outreach is a cooperative venture of Spokane Women in Art and Media and CMTV14.
About 30 people attended last week’s workshop.
Additional workshops are planned this spring. To sign up, go to altlens.org. Each workshop is $10.
Rebecca Chadwell, program coordinator for the AltLens effort, said that the first workshop drew in a range of interests. For example, one person wanted to develop a virtual reality show. Another person wanted to film her pets.
But that’s the idea – to expand access to video and production skills and bring more voices and views to community programming.
Chadwell called the goal as being “radically inclusive.”
She said only 17 percent of workers in video or film production are women.
“You can come and learn on good equipment,” Chadwell said. “It’s nice to say, ‘Here’s a tool. What’s your story?’ ”
The beginning workshop focuses on basic equipment, getting footage, good lighting, studio set up and working with a small film crew. A second workshop expands on those skills. Participants later can check out equipment and then finish their work.
The studio will host an open house and community screening on June 2 to highlight the variety of CMTV14 projects, including some from AltLens participants. The event will be from 6 to 9 p.m. with screenings at 6:30 and 8:30 p.m.
Laboratory Spokane, which provides space and support for interactive art in Spokane, is planning to take advantage of the improved studio, Chadwell said.
In addition to the local public-access channel, Community-Minded Enterprises has early achiever programs in Spokane and Pasco, a Recovery Cafe in Peaceful Valley and a Plan to Work program in Spokane.
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