Five Artists Under 25: Making a Case for the City of Trees 

More young artists are choosing to stay in Boise rather than heading to the big city

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click to enlarge Zach Voss - LAURIE PEARMAN

Zach Voss

Age: 23

Discipline: Film

Day Job: Director at Retroscope Media LLC

Hometown: Pocatello

Years in Boise: Five

Zach Voss moved to Boise in 2007 to attend Boise State University. While still sheltered safely inside the undergraduate cocoon, he realized the only way he could find a job making the kind of work that really interested him was to employ himself.

He started Retroscope Media, a creative media company specializing in video production. After graduating in late 2011, he was able to make Retroscope a full-time job and the LLC has been running successfully for more than a year.

"Fresh out of college starting your own business was much easier to do in Boise than it would have been in a bigger city," Voss said.

"There are hard costs, which are the same ... but other things are much more accommodating, like cheap rent whether it's in my housing or my office.

"Also, I think the ease of being able to ride my bike with my trailer to a location and film that way and not have to get on a highway and be in traffic for an hour. It's small enough to where I can navigate the scene and enjoy doing so. ... It's cool to be able to get someplace pedal-powered."

Voss cites his participation in the i48 festival as a turning point in his creative life, a point at which he became better known for his films. In 2010, Voss entered Object of Affection in the novice category and it won best film. The following year, Beard's Company was a competitor in the open category and won best film as well.

Not long after his 2011 success, Voss received a grant from the Idaho Film Office to create another short film. Mandrake Estate follows Brooks Lloydman, the groundskeeper of a prestigious golf course. The film wrapped production in late summer with plans for a screening later this year.

"I'm finding a lot of opportunity available to me without having to have an undesirable level of competition with anyone else," said Voss who has been able connect and collaborate with other Boise artists in a way he doesn't feel would be possible in a larger city.

"All those avenues that are just right there," he said. "A phone call away and I know that I would be greeted with a positive response and a willingness to participate."

Retroscope Media continues its momentum with a grant from the Boise City Arts and History Department, which will result in a documentary film detailing the life and work of local tricycle craftsman Gregory Allen.

"It's intriguing and I wanna ride that wave," Voss said of Boise's progress.

"I think that it's kind of a common idea to leave when you want to pursue something like that and jump into it in a place that might be considered a hub, but to stay here and represent this place I think is an honorable task and something I wish to continue."

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