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MIAD student work highlights Unfinished Legacy

Unfinished Legacy, a brand started by Milwaukee artist Brema Brema, enjoyed a promotional video created by current Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design senior Hannah Davis for her Digital Media: Video Production elective course in fall 2022. The semester-long project culminated in a three-minute video and three shorter clips advertising the brand.

Brema started the Unfinished Legacy streetwear label as a tribute to his own unfinished life after an insightful Milwaukee Art Museum internship. Screen-printed butterfly motifs representing hope and migration are recurring themes in the apparel. During recent protests in Milwaukee, Brema designed and handed out Black Lives Matter shirts to marchers, later selling the shirts and donating the proceeds to True Skool, a Milwaukee-based center for transformative creative arts.

A longtime fan of the label, Davis explains that her Unfinished Legacy project “was done purely out of love and passion for the brand and everything that it stands for.” After messaging Brema on Instagram, Davis got permission to shoot footage of an Unfinished Legacy pop-up in Milwaukee and the afterparty show at a local venue. “When … Unfinished Legacy and Brema watch this project, I want them to know that what they are doing inspires thousands of people every day,” says Davis.

The digital media course that inspired this project, taught by Andy Sayers, focuses on “the basics of pre-production, production and post-production,” which includes everything from writing the script and shooting the footage to finalizing a deliverable edit. Students focused on one project over the course of the semester. “I’m extremely grateful that MIAD has begun to offer more video production courses,” says Davis. “They have been my greatest classes because of the passion I have to learn more about tools and methods to create great work.”

During the pandemic, Davis struggled with anxiety and the isolation of online classes. “Fear had been preventing me from pursuing my passions,” she explains. “Our life isn’t promised tomorrow and that’s why it’s important to document our experiences.” The Unfinished Legacy project was an emotional experience for Davis. “I’ve finally come to understand why I love the things I love in the way that I love them, especially my passion for documentation. It’s so intriguing how we get to experience a moment in the present that was documented in the past. Yet, it hits us … as if it were in the present moment.”

As a student, Davis deeply appreciates her MIAD experience. In 2021, she participated in a mural internship hosted by Associate Professor Brad Bernard, during which she worked on a behind-the-scenes video. The experience was “a form of therapy” for her. Davis hopes MIAD students and Milwaukee creatives remember that “we’re always inspiring someone, whether we realize it or not. You matter to someone.”

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