"Freedom Tracks", a documentary journey guided by horses
A journey to freedom guided by horses
Across Europe and America, many are exploring new ways of communicating between horses and humans, finding true, authentic connection.
With this documentary, my aim is to open a window for us to see horses as more than merely tools of leisure or work. It explores how deepening our connection with horses can strengthen our relationship to the world and to ourselves.
I traveled across Europe and the Americas on a journey of exploration, discovering new, meaningful ways of horse and human interaction, finding true, authentic connection.
In my quest for a better understanding of horses, I met numerous equine experts and discovered a variety of methods and approaches to interaction with horses, without restraint or force. Through this experience, I began to understand horses more clearly, and to start to see them as a reflection of myself. As a result, this documentary also becamemy own inner journey to a deeper understanding of what is essential to create authentic connection.
Through the interactions we have with them, horses can be our guides on our own track to freedom.
In 2017, Freedom Tracks won the Award for
Best Equestrian Inspirational Documentary
at the Equus Film Festival in New YorkMore info
Freedom Tracks will be on tour in France, Belgium, Canada, United States and Costa Rica in 2018.
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Coming from differents countries and different backgrounds, these specialists share with us their insights on our relationship with horses.
Sylvain Gillier - Imbs (France)
Medical doctor specialized in equitherapy, Sylvain offers workshops with horses in France and United States through his facility Equintessence. He explains how equi-coaching can significantly improve treatment of depressive disorders.Click here for more information
Carine Thiran (Belgium)
Veterinarian Equine Therapist specialized in equine ethology (animal behavior) and intuitive communication, Carine also practices shamanism and vocal therapy. Outside rider, she also offers horseback trail ride on her facility in Belgium. she will tell us about the importance of emotional messages and body movement in communicating with horses.Click here for more information
Ludovic Fournet (France)
Trainer in Natural Horsemanship. Previously a high level competitor in horse endurance and performance shows, today Ludovic practices and teaches Natural Horsemanship, a method of training based on horse behavior, natural communication and "horse language". He emphasizes what we humans have to practice in ordrer to train and ride a horse in a true, mutually beneficial partnership.Click here for more information
Carole Lacroix (Quebec)
Natural Horsemanship instructor.After training "troubled" horses for about fifteen years, Carole took her learning from the horses into ways of helping humans. Carole describes the natural behavior of horses and the importance of managing our own emotions when practising Natural Horsemanship methods.Click here for more information
Debbie Draves Legg & Sally Nilsson
Equine Experiential Learning Facilitators. A former nurse and committed nature-lover, Debbie Draves Legg created Leaves and Lizards as a place where people can come to reconnect to each other, nature and themselves. An intuitive executive coach and life-long horse-lover, Sally Nilsson left her high-powered corporate attorney job in London to support people in finding balance and rediscovering their zest for life. Both equine experiential learning facilitators, Debbie and Sally offer transformative personal development retreats with their horse herd.Click here for more information
Elsa Sinclair (United States)
Horse Trainer & Movie Director.In her documentary movie Taming Wild, Elsa intends to create a relationship with a wild mustang mare without using any restraining tools, to see if she will let her ride on her back. Thanks to that experience, she develops her own approach called Freedom Based Training, in which she develops the concept of passive leadership taught by her mustang mare.Click here for more information
Linda Kohanov (United States, Arizona)
Author, Conference speaker & Equine Coach. Founder of Eponaquest Worldwide, Linda Kohanov is a well known innovator in the Equine Facilitated Learning field and a respected author. She spent more than twenty years researching on the origins of our relationship with horses, wrote six books and teaches the way of the horse all around the world.Click here for more information
Jay Begaye & Ty Jones (United States)
Navajo Singer & Horseman Navajo. Both living in Navajo Nation in Arizona, Jay and Ty offer a new way of seeing horses through the Navajo traditional wisdom. Traditional singer and musician, Jay Begaye shares traditions and legends about the connection between the Navajos and their horses. Ty Jones is a Navajo horse trainer. For many years he studied the origin of the bond between the Navajos warriors and their horses. By telling the story of his people, he tries to reintroduce the Native wisdom into modern horsemanship.Click here for more information
MORE GREAT SPEAKERS
Along the way I have met many other great personalities and made new friends who have much wisdom to share about the way of the horse and on horse/human interaction.
Further wisdom, experiences and thoughts on equine communication from leaders in the field, including:
- Frederic Pignon, the famous equestrian artist who seems to float among horses with grace and ease. Click here for more information;
- Pierre Enoff, creator of unique horseback riding experiences of transhumance in the Pyrenean Valley with barefoot (shoeless) horses. Click here for more information;
- Brigitte Benoist, founder of Paddock Paradise Facility which recreates horse natural living conditions for horses. Click here for more information; and
"Alone, we go faster. Together, we go further."
After four years of traveling, filming and self-financing this project all on my own, I decided to unite an international team of talented and passionate people to bring the movie Freedom Tracks to life.
Yoann Carnelos and Stéphane Del Castillo (France)
From the beginning, I wanted the soundtrack of the documentary to be unique and enhance the emotion. Talented composers and musicians, Yoann and Stéphane immediately said yes when I presented my project to them. Thanks to their talent and such hard work on tight deadlines, they overcame all my expectations with amazing music that gives you goosebumps!
Aurian De Wouters and Louise De Hemptinne (Belgium)
After filming horses around the world for three years, I realized that I had absolutely no idea how to tell my story. That’s when Aurian and Louise from Extrasystole Productions contacted me from Belgium to offer their help. After hearing about my project, they took a leap of faith and joined me in Costa Rica to help me find the angle of the story. We brainstormed for days, shared our experiences and also had fun with horses!
Debbie Draves Legg (Costa Rica)
As soon as she heard about my project, Debbie had faith in its success. First of all, she invited me to visit the amazing retreat center in the Costa Rican jungle she runs with her husband Steve. We did an interview and she showed me her approach with horses. Then she offered me the opportunity to stay in this beautiful, peaceful environment while I finished making the movie! She also helped with promotion by putting the movie on the map and convincing me to present it in New York - where it received an award!
Barbara Draves (United States)
In Costa Rica, I had the chance to meet Barbara, Debbie's sister when she came on vacation. For a week, she stood in the mud, through the rain, and shot all the herd footage. With her drone, Barbie makes us travel in the last scene of Freedom Tracks thanks to superb aerial shots of Costa Rica and the herd of horses!
Marion Fernandez (France)
When I started to feel overwhelmed by doing the post-production part of the movie at the same time as managing a financing campaign for the project, I started looking for help…and that’s when Marion from Dada Films joined the team. She came to Costa Rica for a month to help with the filming, the video editing and the launching of the crowdfunding campaign. Talented wildlife documentary director and editor herself, but also a horse lover, Marion was a great support during this busy time!
Nicolas Guerder (Canada)
Long time friend living in Montreal working in Information Management, Nicolas is one of the kindest people I know. With his amazing skills in Web Development, he has put a lot of effort and creativity into making and updating this cool Freedom Tracks website!
Hélène Holvoet (France)
Hélène is a journalist and press agent, and she supported the project right from the beginning. Thanks to all the work she put into contacting journalists in the equine press, we had articles and interviews talking about the movie... she helped me put Freedom Tracks "on the map"!
Mériem Ledoré (Canada)
Mériem is a talented webdesigner living in Montreal who helped me give a professional look to the documents I had to send to the press and production companies. She understood right away the style I needed and the result is great!
Steve Legg (Costa Rica)
Amazing painter and sculpter, Steves owns and manages a retreat center in the jungle with his wife Debbie. On top of supporting me with the post production of the movie, I went to him when I had my crazy idea for a logo. I wanted it to be fun and authentic, and for it to tell a story. He created this beautiful and funny image of me with a horse and a world map, that says it all!
Nicolas Martigne (Thailand)
I met Nicolas in film school in France ten years ago, and his professional journey is really inspiring. Today, he lives in Thailand,where he created the sound design for some scenes in Freedom Tracks to make them feel more realistic and create an "ambiance". The results are amazing!
Sally Nilsson (Costa Rica)
--> I met Sally in Costa Rica when I interviewed her as a speaker in the movie... little did I know that she would become such an important part of the project and such an amazing friend! I can’t even count all the long hours, days and sleepless nights she spent with me rewriting the story for it to make sense, helping me film the missing scenes, lifting me back up every time I lost faith…such a valuable member of the team!
Antonin Rey (France)
Antonin is a dear friend and talented sound mixer living in Paris. Despite tough conditions, time differences, bad quality of sound and tight deadlines, he did an amazing job creating such a professional render for the sound mixing of Freedom Tracks!
Ronald Perez Rojas (Costa Rica)
Excellent rider, horse trainer and good friend, Ronald grew up in Costa Rica around cattle and horses. Thanks to his horse skills, he was able to shoot all of the footage for the final scene from a horse’s back, which gives a very realistic feeling of freedom
Leila Audrey Pagès,
equine photographer and director
Horses have always been my inspiration and image my way of communicating.
Immersed with horses from a young age, I always looked for a different way of communicating with my horse friends from what was taught in “classical” horse riding schools.
I was fascinated by the native philosophies and sought out many different experiences with horses to understand them better. But after fifteen years of intensive practice of countless traditional horse riding disciplines in France, I was fed up. Fed up of being constrained by the classical world of classic horse riding. Fed up of treating the horse like a bike; a slave who works all day long like a convict and comes back to his cell at the end of the day. Fed up of twisting myself into new positions to obtain ever-more technical feats from the horse. It wasn't what I was looking for. So I left the horses world for a few years, during which I explored my second passion: creative image. Obtaining a video editor diploma, I worked for a number of TV channels (including Equidia, a channel about horses).
Then, in 2012, it was time for a change. I immigrated to Canada and thanks to a new job in a Natural Horsemanship Facility, I again found myself immerged in the horse world. Natural Horsemanship is an ethical, natural horse riding and training method, based on communication with, and the respect for, the horse. I was fascinated and undertook an intensive training and teaching course. During the two years I spent here, I started to see what real authenticity looks like in this relationship between two species.That's when I started my pilgrimage: going deeper into the understanding of these wonderful creatures, to discover the secrets behind our close relationship over so many years and the key to the bond that links them to us and us to them. My research has taken me throughout Europe, as well as North, South and Central America, seeking answers to how humans an horses can have a more harmonious relationship and what does that relationship offer? My discoveries were even more surprising than I thought!