Stone Hut Studio’s mission is to create “Films For A Better World”. We help, organizations, companies and movements that are doing good by spreading their message and telling their stories. For us, ‘good’ can mean many things from protecting the environment, to finding social justice, to building to community, to educating and beyond.
We feel that more than any other medium, film and video have the power to reach an audience’s heart. We strive to make powerful and beautiful videos that tell a story and inspire people towards positive change.
We create everything from short youtube videos to feature length documentaries. Our clients include many fair trade and organic companies, non-profits, environmental groups and educational companies, including Canaan Fair Trade, Food For Thought, Scholastic and PBS.
Our first feature length documentary, The People and The Olive told that story of fair trade olive farmers in Palestine and a group of runners that ran 120 miles in five days across the West Bank to support them. Currently in post production is our next feature, Connected By Coffee about our connection to the lives of fair trade coffee farmers in Central America.
We have worked on films for good in India, Nepal, Tibet, Malawi, Ethiopia, Palestine, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua.
AARON DENNIS, Founder, Director, Videographer, Editor, Animator
Stone Hut’s founder, Aaron Dennis, has over ten years of professional experience working around the globe on film and video projects. A graduate of the University of Michigan’s Cinema Arts program, Dennis began his career in Malawi, Africa filming the work of Malaria and AIDS researchers. Afterwards he spent five years in New York City working on several PBS documentaries including the award-winning four-part “Supreme Court” series. In 2007 he spent seven months filming the Tibetan communities of India, Nepal and Tibet to create an archive of a rapidly changing culture. The importance of family and the natural world led him to return in 2008 to his beautiful hometown of Traverse City, Michigan. From there he worked independently before founding Stone Hut Studios in 2011. In 2012 Stone Hut Studios released “The People and The Olive: The Story of the Run Across Palestine” directed and edited by Dennis, which is an official selection of several film festivals including The Chicago International Social Change Film Festival and The Boston Palestine Film Festival. @aaron_dennis
DAN MILLS, Associate Producer
Dan pursues the serenity he finds while exploring the out-of-doors. Whether it’s embarking on hiking trips along the Appalachian Trail or bicycling through Montana and the Dakotas, writing while lounging across the mossy Icelandic landscape, or exploring the geology of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, he thrives on the mental challenges that are met. During the past five years Dan has honed his technical skills as a drummer, pianist, and guitarist to further discover his passion of writing music. Dan also has a knack for technical design and although not trained as an engineer, has worked on a variety of personal projects including traditional wooden snowshoes, tent-hammocks, and camera rigs. Whatever the project, Dan is confident that it can be done!
CHELSEA DENNIS, Communications and Creative Director
Chelsea has been a graphic designer, strategist, photographer, community organizer and fair trade advocate for many years. She is the owner/founder of Chelsea Bay Design: branding, design and creative consulting specifically for environmentally and socially responsible companies and organizations. Chelsea not only designs for Stone Hut Studios, but also handles communications, event planning, and overall strategy of the business.
JOHN NEWLAND, Intern
John, a senior studying Screen Arts & Cultures at The University of Michigan, has been working with film and video for over six years. He has worked on projects that include animation, video, film and web. He frequently uploads videos to his YouTube channel, JCNewly, since early 2008.