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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Kickstarter Campaign: Tara Darby presents Run It Out

When photographer and film maker Tara Darby discovered the inspiring story of Robin Arzon she as determined to make a film...

Written by Amelia Gregory

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_ Robin and her mother Carmen in Utah
For many years photographer Tara Darby contributed stunning photos to Amelia’s Magazine in print. Now she has turned her narrative skills to film making, inspired by an extraordinary woman she came across on instagram. Robin Arzon is a street athlete, former lawyer and nowadays an ultra-marathoner. Run it Out is a documentary that follows Robin on one of the toughest challenges of her life, running five marathons in five days in the challenging terrain of the Utah desert to raise money for MS research as Robin’s mother Carmen was diagnosed with the disease in 1999. As the story unfolds you discover the traumas of her past and why she is propelled to continually push past her own limits.

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_Robin Arzon
How did you discover Robin Arzon and what was it about her story that you found so appealing?
I discovered her on Instagram although a friend had told me about meeting her about a year before and her description stuck with me. I was struck by her strength and individuality and how comfortable she was in her own skin. She was living life in full-blown technicolour and making herself accountable. It was contagious- it made me want to push past my own perceived limitations. When I read more about her and discovered how much she’s been through and how running had helped her I thought she’d make an amazing subject for a film.

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_ Robin practising yoga on her rooftop in NYC
©Tara Darby__ Run it Out_Robin hits a wall
What is an Ultra-Marathoner?
An ultra-marathoner is anyone running over the traditional 26.2 mile marathon distance.

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_ The Road to Nephi
Why do you think running is such an important and life changing pursuit for so many people?
I think because running makes you feel good – it changes you. No matter how hard and challenging it can be at the time you never regret a run. Running is free – you can explore places and run with other people or be solitary. It takes your body and mind to another zone and makes you stronger. Running over distance is meditative and it gives you confidence and a lot of mental clarity.

©Tara Darby__ Run it Out_Robin Arzon_ downtime in the RV
What is your own experience of running?
Running is amazing training for life, especially if you sign up for a race. You take a challenge and then realise that you are capable of so much more than you think. You learn to let that niggling voice of negativity and distrust just wash over you. You override it one step at a time until the voice goes away and your endorphins kick in. Running has given me a lot of strength, focus and release.

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_Utah skyline
You have recently made the transition from stills photographer to film: what prompted this and what have been the biggest challenges in retraining yourself to see in motion?
I have always loved telling stories with my pictures. In recent years I’ve been writing text to go with my images so film felt like a natural transition. I’ve made short films before but for various reasons I wanted to push myself into unknown territory. I don’t think the challenge has been to see in motion so much as to learn how to build and shape the story of the film once it has been shot. 

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_Bridgerunners
What kind of music will you be using to score the film?
Music is one of the biggest challenges so far – we are still working on the score!

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_ Robin sets her watch for Day 02 of her Utah marathons
How do you juggle your life as the mother of a young child and your work, travelling such great distances and being apart from her?
Being away from my daughter was probably the hardest part of the filming. But I knew that it was a concentrated period of time and then I would be back. In the mean time she had lots of fun with her Dad. Being reunited as a family again was the best ever.

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_ Robin has to cut off the front of her shoe
How did you manage the physical process of filming on the run in Utah?
It was boiling hot, we were at a high altitude but we all felt humbled by what Robin was going through. Any challenges that we faced paled into insignificance! A lot of the time we were following her in a silent car while she ran in the scorching heat. As soon as she stopped running I was just following her everywhere with my camera, trying to achieve an invisibility that you also learn as a documentary photographer.

©Tara Darby_ Run it Out_Robin runs 20 miles at altitude
Why would you urge people to back Run it Out on Kickstarter?
Because Robin is an extraordinary woman. If I can raise the funds needed to complete the film then I’m convinced Robin’s story will be a huge inspiration to many different people. I’m fascinated to see how humans deal with adversity and the power we have to heal ourselves. Life is a constant battle between fear and love – between shutting down or opening up. The film deals with universal issues that I think everyone can relate to.

You can back Tara Darby‘s Kickstarter campaign to finish Run It Out here. I recommend you bag yourself a special signed print. Find out more on the Run It Out website here.

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