Videotect: Skyways of Minnesota

There were some great entries into the very first Videotect competition held by the AIA MN and Architecture Minnesota.

Over 1,500 unique viewers cast their votes for viewers favorites, and Craig Hinrichs and I were thrilled to make the top 5. Which allowed our film to be viewed at the Videotect Awards at the Walker Art Center.

After tax season I'll be sure to have some follow up thoughts on this whole endeavor. For now. Enjoy the film and if you have any thoughts you like to share here. I'd love to keep the discussion about the skyways going.


There's a GREAT write up by Scott P Donaldson

The top five finalists were (in order of appearance)

1) IDE[A]

2) Tucker

3) Lindau

4) O'Malley

5) Siemers

The viewers choice was chosen from that 5 was Tucker
It got a lot of laughs in the audience, it was nicely executed, and it was a good story.

Honorable Mentions went to
1 IDE[A], 3 Lindau, and 2 Tucker
1 was beautiful and interesting, with good pacing.
3 was a humorous discussion of the opposing perspectives of the skyways, but yet impossible to watch without eye strain, even with the red blue glasses
2 (as described above)

The judges' selection for winner was.... Davy
This film focused on one simplistic criticism that persists about the skyways, calling them mindless walkways that at times feel like they lead to nowhere. There's an interesting write up about the "zombie" perspective by Steve Berg at the, I have to disagree with the notion that skyways are leading downtown in the wrong direction.

What the judges had to say about their selection:
" was clear"..."... It had a perspective that was emotional..." was experimental..." had a clear beginning middle and end..." resonated with me..."

Some interesting articles about the competition were written as well. I've posted my own thoughts as comments to some of those articles.

Hannah Feder

MinnPost - Cityscape: Videos explore life in Twin Cities skyways by Steve Berg

The Journal - Video contest winner critiques the skyway by Andre Eggert

the line - Skyway video contest inspires many different impressions of the indoor walkways

Videotect Update: View and Vote!

I just returned from a series of projects in Chicago and Oklahoma City to learn that the films for Videotect are now online. There are some real gems in this group. My collaborator and co-director, Craig Hinrichs and I are very pleased with our film, Ups and Downs, and feel it adds humor and joy to this visual conversation about skyways and their impact on the urban environment.

Voting will be taking place from this link March 7th-18th (under the name "Siemers") and we would love your support. But we hope you get a chance to enjoy many of these films whenever you find some free time. These votes will help select the films that will be shown March 31st at the Walker Art Center Cinema. Where winners will be selected from both the Audience and anounced by the Videotect Jury.

Ryan Siemers and Craig Hinrichs from Architecture Minnesota on Vimeo.

Voting will be taking place from this link March 7th-18th



Now Recruiting!

A new opportunity has been announced by the AIA and Architecture Minnesota Magazine

Videotect: Trailer from Architecture Minnesota on Vimeo.


Do you have a story or perspective on the skyway system of The Twin Cities. A thesis that expresses your view.

I want to collaborate with those who want to share their perspective.

The Deadline: Final Submissions by Feb 25th 2011.

If you are interested in participating this is a short 1 month commitment but I need to put together a team by this Feb 2nd in order for this to stand a realistic opportunity.

The Reward

This isn't about prize money. It's a chance to be heard. It's a chance to share your talent and skill with a community that appreciates it and may have use for it. It's a chance to impact our society's dreamers, thinkers, policy makers and builders.

The Team

The timeline is short, the team must meet the challenge.

The Urban Theologian

One who is passionate about the history and effects of the skyways of Minneapolis, St. Paul, and hopefully familiar with skyways of other cities. 

The Illustrator.

The one who can convey complex ideas and Clearly tell represent them in diagrams, drawings, and illustrations (analogue and digital).

The Director

The one who sees the big picture, and keeps everyone involved focused on their roles.

The Principal Photographer (Filled)

The one who can see and share the world as the story requires.

The Editor

The one who knows the story and fits all the pieces together and is able to be merciless about what gets left on the cutting room floor.

The Colorist

A post production guru who can will put the polish the final product.

What do I bring to the team?

I have the equipment to capture the story and the vision to see with your perspective.

I am an architectural designer by training and an architectural photographer by passion. Due to the timeline I can help with developing the storyboard, and principal photography.


Email me with:
1) Your name
2) Contact info
3) What role you want to fill.