Following Boston // S2 06: Boston Public Garden // Sally Cooper

SHOT BYDouglas Gordon

DIRECTORMichael Kalish



Sally’s love for the community is transparent. She was one of the first people to express interest in the Following Boston movement, and her support throughout the project has been invaluable. Little did I know, less than a year later she would be hosting her own episode. She is the moderator of many fine feeds, and her passion for photography is infectious. Over the past few months her personal images have reached the next level. Sally takes the viewer along as she searches for the next source of wonder and surprise… and we can’t wait to see what she discovers next.

Michael Kalish

-September 2016

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Riju Kumar September 28, 2016

Awesome director and featured artist

Mo Hanley September 29, 2016

FollowingBoston helps to bring the Boston Instagram community even closer by featuring local photographers, allowing us to learn their passion and motivation. This film captures Sally’s enthusiasm and talent so well. Nicely done.

Susan M. Bradley September 30, 2016

Best episode yet of this brilliant series on Boston photographers. Each video is thoughtfully and beautifully filmed, edited and produced. Well worth watching!

Michael Kalish October 7, 2016

The definition of what it means to be a “photographer” has dramatically changed over the past few years. It’s no longer reserved for those who just shoot film, or receive a paycheck to do so. Social media was largely responsible for this shift in how people view the medium and its current status. Once Instagram was solidified as a social media giant, it became a running joke that its users were actual “photographers.” The term “social photographer” grew from this skepticism, and used to identify those who were incredibly talented and possessed the ability to tell stories with their images. This was the major catalyst for Producer Michael Kalish, in creating the “Following Boston” film series that launched summer 2015.

Diversity was critical to Kalish when choosing the cast for Following Boston. The “secret sauce” of developing a season, or group of videos that play well together was also important. Kalish hand selected a dozen or so local street photographers from Instagram to be considered as the subject of a fully produced short film. The process involved printing one photo from each person, removing the names/handles, and number of followers. This leveled the playing field. The images were then tossed into the air. Once they landed, the season started to take shape. At that point, the photographers were contacted to participate in the project. Not all were thrilled about being the subject of a short film. Many feel more comfortable behind the camera, Kalish being one. Those who were truly enthusiastic about the project were asked to choose the location in Boston to be filmed. Boston became a central character in these love letters to a city, bringing together and spotlighting a vibrant community of photographers.

With the help of talented local editor Kenton Van Natten, and cinematographers, Douglas Gordon and Grace Deacon, the Following Boston documentary series has reached a new level of story telling in its second season. The challenge for Kalish was to produce quality content that allowed the viewer to learn something about the subject and location, while at the same time, entertain the audience and keep them engaged. Leveraging Instagram as the feeding ground and distribution channel for the series, @FollowingBoston has become the hottest photo hub in Boston, with close to 10K users and over 25K images tagged with #FollowingBoston by hopefuls looking to have their photos featured… or perhaps to be selected for an upcoming episode.

With two seasons comprised of 13 episodes produced and shared online, the question becomes what is next for Kalish and Following Boston…

Stay tuned…