Feet in Water, Head on Fire


2023 | 90 Min | 16mm - DCP 

Press Kit


Terra Long’s feature debut is a breathtaking portrait of California’s Coachella Valley that is both anchored in the specifics of place and community, while freely exploring the limits of cinematic time and space. Shaped by seismic forces of the San Andreas Fault, the Coachella Valley is home to an agricultural community built around the date palm trees introduced to the region in the early 1900s. Today, the land and its people face combined threats from economic upheaval, US immigration policy and climate change. With an elliptical grace, Long’s film spans vast expanses of geological time and sweeping desert landscapes into extreme close-ups of the region’s plant and insect life, where microscopic views of cellular biology trace intimate stories of human connection. Beautifully shot on 16mm film and featuring hand-processing techniques that incorporate plants native to the Coachella Valley into the film, Long’s documentary is grounded in place even on a material level. - JC


Directed + Camera | Terra Long
Produced + Written | Mireya Martinez,
Sharlene Bamboat + Terra Long
Written with | Daniela Uribe
Edit | Kaija Siirala + Terra Long
Sound Design + Mix | Richy Carey
Additional Camera | Alisha Tejpal

Selected Press:

A Great Divide, Reverse Shot
Ode to the Natural World, VOX
The Road to Mecca, Cinema Scope
Palm Trees, Persian Myths, and Pageantry POV Magazine

Selected Screenings:

True / False Film Festival, US
First Look MoMI, US
Hot Docs, Canada
DOXA, Canada 
DokuFest, Kosovo 
Black Canvas Film Festival, Mexico
Dok Leipzig, Germany
Unorthodocs Wexner Center, US 
IDFA, Netherlands
RIDM, Montreal Canada

350 MYA


2016 | 5 Min | 16mm

“350 million years ago the Tafilalt region was the Rheic Ocean.” So we are informed at the end of Terra Long’s lovely formalist landscape study, which employs the sharp contrast of colored silk against sand and sky to emulate a kind of visual oasis. The material, undulating in the wind, is not a metaphor for the once-present waves. Rather, it demonstrates a time-frame separate from that of the desert itself, which is always in motion but whose geological existence is at a significant remove from human time.

Adding an additional dimension to these images of differential flux, Long displays the work of the apparatus itself: slippage in frame registration, sprockets vibrating, and the specific meeting of the Moroccan sun and the surface of the lens. Each reflects a topography, and in turn a temporality all its own.

Michael Sicinski, Mubi Notebook

Made during the Weight of Mountains film residency at Café Tissardmine in Morocco

Selected Screenings

  • Toronto International Film Festival, Wavelengths, Canada
  • International Film Festival Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • Jihlava Film Festival, Czech Republic
  • Media City Film Festival, Windsor, Detroit, Canada, US
  • LA Film Forum: Mysteries Inside Facts curated by David Dinnell US
  • Lightfield, Sanfrancisco, US
  • Festival Strangloscope, Florianópolis, Brazil
  • Exposure Kopernik Observatory, curated by Tomonari Nishikawa NY, US

Horses in the
year of the dog

2018 | 6 min | 16mm | 2K | 5.1 Sound

An immediate love forms between new friends considering motherhood under the roof of a fierce matriarch. Bodies become porous, and passage, bees pollinate the food we consume, becoming and belonging one to the other. Film developed in lavender, eucalyptus, and hibiscus grown on site.

Filmed during the Site and Cycle residency at Casa Rural in Jalisco, Mexico.

Select Festivals:

  • Ann Arbor Film Festival
  • EXiS Experimental Film & Video Festival, Seoul, Korea.
  • Edinburgh International Film Festival, Scotland, UK
  • THOUSANDSUNS CINEMA Media City Film Festival, Online


2020, 93 min

Directed & Produced by Cecilia Aldarondo in Collaboration with Associate Producer Lale Namerrow Pastor Edited by Terra Jean Long Cinematography Pablo Alvarez-Mesa & Martin DiCicco Produced by Ines Hofmann Khanna Composer Angélica Negrón Executive Producers Charlotte Cooke & Laura Poitras.

Through shard-like glimpses of everyday life in post-Hurricane María Puerto Rico, Landfall is a cautionary tale for our times. Set against the backdrop of protests that toppled the US colony’s governor in 2019, the film offers a prismatic portrait of collective trauma and resistance. While the devastation of María attracted a great deal of media coverage, the world has paid far less attention to the storm that preceded it: a 72-billion-dollar debt crisis crippling Puerto Rico well before the winds and waters hit.

Landfall examines the kinship of these two storms—one environmental, the other economic—juxtaposing competing utopian visions of recovery. Featuring intimate encounters with Puerto Ricans as well as the newcomers flooding the island, Landfall reflects on a question of contemporary global relevance: when the world falls apart, who do we become?


  • DOC NYC Film Festival // Grand Jury Award, Viewfinders Competition
  • Florida Film Festival // Grand Jury Award
  • Guanajuato International Film Festival // Best International Documentary
  • Milwaukee Film Festival // Best Documentary
  • Boston Latino Film Festival // Best Documentary
  • New Orleans Film Festival // Jury Honorable Mention


“an exquisite film, by turns tender and compassionate, cinematically adventurous and self-assured”

—Filmmaker Magazine

“extraordinarily prescient… a crisis can bring out the worst in people, but also the best”

—Moveable Fest

“It is this multiplicity that allows Landfall to excel. Without presenting a straightforward narrative of recovery it considers both the unprocessed grief and the sense of relief that so many carry with them”

—The New York Times

“For those of us whose memory of Hurricane Maria boils down to footage of President Donald Trump scornfully tossing out paper towels to a crowd at a disaster relief center, Cecilia Aldarondo’s documentary Landfall offers up a welcome flipside”

—Hollywood Reporter


  • Tribeca Film Festival
  • Hot Docs Film Festival
  • IDFA Film Festival
  • RIDM Film Festival

After the Last River – Editor

2014, 90 min

Written & Directed by Victoria Lean Edited by Terra Jean Long Produced by Victoria Lean and Jade Blair

Filmed over five years, After the Last River follows the reserve of Attawapiskat’s journey from obscurity and into the international spotlight. Filmmaker Victoria Lean highlights stories of indigenous resistance against powerful mining industry agendas and government policies, painting a complex portrait of a homeland imperiled as it becomes a profitable new frontier.


  • Best Canadian Feature, Planet in Focus
  • Audience Choice Award, Regent Park FF
  • Nigel Moore Award, DOXA Documentary Film Festival
  • Audience Choice Award, Bay Street Film Festival
  • Canadian Screen Award (nominee), Donald Britain Award - Best Social-Political Doc


  • National Canada Film Day 2017
  • DOXA Documentary Film Festival, Vancouver, BC
  • Kingston Canadian Film Festival, Kingston On
  • Planet in Focus Film Festival, Toronto, ON
  • Yellowknife International Film Festival, Yellowknife, NT
  • Regent Park Film Festival, Toronto ON
  • Victoria Film Festival, Victoria BC
  • Reframe Documentary FF, Peterborough ON
  • Bay Street Film Festival, Thunder Bay, ON
  • Cinefest International Film Festival, Sudbury, ON
  • One World Documentary Film Festival, Ottawa, ON
  • Salt Spring Film Festival, BC

The Wind Sleeps Standing Up – Editor

2017, 12 min

Director Sharlene Bamboat

Memory and biography are examined through experiments in narration as Bamboat plays with ambiguous boundaries between fact and fiction. Lists of personal preferences of various quotidian textures such as pop culture, food, and sexuality are described both in first and third person, sketching a constellation of clues to form a biography. Footage shot by the artist in Pakistan several years apart becomes both an indicator of image technology and a metaphor for memory.

The Quiet Zone – Editor

2017, 45 min

Directed & Produced by Daniel Froidevaux and Elisa Gonzalez Edited by Terra Jean Long Cinematography Daniel Froidevaux and Elisa Gonzalez Sound Recording Samuel Rogers Sound Design by Dafydd Hughes Light Painting Zachary Finkelstein

In mountainous remote West Virginia lies the National Radio Quiet Zone where digital interference from cell phones, Wi-Fi routers, and microwaves among other emitting technologies are restricted to protect one of the largest steerable radio telescopes on earth as it probes the sky for astronomical objects and signs of extraterrestrial life. A group of electrically sensitive people fleeing a life of chronic pain under digital proliferation take shelter in the Quiet Zone. As the telescope prepares to receive signals from the universe Melissa, Jennifer, Diane, and Leo start to imagine a home safe from a crippling threat that is invisible to most. A quiet rumination on the unseen world of radio waves and the search for proof that another way of life is possible.

Festivals & Screenings

  • Hot Docs
  • Doxa
  • Big Sky Film Festival
  • Available Light Film Festival
  • Union Docs 
  • Victoria Film Festival
  • Tartu World Film Festival
  • San Francisco Docs

1999 – Editor

2018, 90 min

Written & Directed by Samara Grace Chadwick Edited by Terra Jean Long Cinematography Pablo Alvarez-Mesa & Samara Grace Chadwick Produced by Parabola Films, The National Film Board of Canada & Beauvoir Films

When death haunts a high school in a small town in the late 1990s, everyone is forever transformed. In this gentle, prismatic film, Samara returns to the town she fled as a teen to re-immerse herself in the memories still lurking there, in its spaces and within the dusty boxes of diaries, photos and VHS tapes. 1999 is not a ghost story, but the ghosts are palpable at every turn. The snow-covered streets, the school’s hallways and lockers are preserved as in a dream.

The absences left by the relentless teenage suicides still shimmer with questions, trauma and regret. Samara encounters people who are as breathtaking as they are heartbroken, and, finally, 16 years later, the community strengthens itself by sharing the long-silenced memories.

Ultimately the film weaves together multiple voices in a collective essay on how grief is internalized—and how, as children, we so painfully learn to articulate our desire to stay alive.

Festivals & Screenings

  • Visions du reel (Switzerland)
  • Hot Docs International Documentary Festival (Canada)
  • DokuFest (Kosovo)
  • BAFICI (Argentina)
  • Museum of the Moving Image (USA)
  • New Orleans French Film Festival (USA)
  • Biografilm Festival (Italy)
  • DCTV | Fall Film Series (USA)
  • Berlin Documentary Film Club (Germany)
  • FICFA | Festival international du cinema francophone en Acadie (Canada)


“1999 is one of the most haunting documentaries I’ve ever seen... a philosophical meditation on memory, sorrow, uncertainty, adolescence, and rebellion.” 

- Astra Taylor, Filmmaker Magazine

“A profoundly personal but strikingly universal diaristic look back at a particular place and time. Surprising, tender, and charming.”

- Pamela Cohn, Filmmaker Magazine

“A powerful meditation on trauma and resilience. Unlike anything I’ve seen this year.”

- NOW Magazine

Terra Long is a filmmaker whose work circles cultural, personal, and natural histories embedded within landscape. Her practice is collaborative, with a commitment to deep listening and material explorations of celluloid.

She is a member of the Independent Imaging Retreat Collective (The Film Farm) and F4A Collective, where she shares handmade filmmaking techniques. Her work has been shown in festivals including, Toronto International Film FestivalMedia City Film Festival, Images Festival, Ann Arbor, CPH: DOX, International Film Festival Rotterdam, EXiS, and the Edinburgh International Film Festival among others. Her work is distributed by the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Center. She studied at the Simone de Beauvoir Institute at Concordia University and received her MFA from York University.
She frequently collaborates as lead editor on documentary films, most recently, Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project (Brewster, Stephenson, Sundance 2023) and regularly acts as an editing consultant, The Tuba Thieves (O’Daniel, Sundance 2023).

Her work has been supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the British Columbia Arts Council as well as the British Columbia Arts Foundation. She was a 2016 recipient of the Ontario Arts Council’s Chalmers Fellowship.

She lives and works on the traditional territory of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw in the Canadian province of British Columbia.

CV (Web or PDF)

Select Screenings

  • THOUSANDSUNS CINEMA Media City Film Festival, Online   
  • Our Ancient Forests Sunshine Coast Arts Council, BC, Canada
  • Labocine Films from the Science New Wave, Imagine Science Films, Online
  • Cámara Lúcida, Festival Internacional de Cine, Cuenca, Ecuador
  • Aberystwyth University, Wales UK
  • Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki, Finland

  • Ann Arbor Film Festival, Michigan, US
  • EXiS Experimental Film & Video Festival, Seoul, Korea.
  • Artist Film Workshop, The Weight of Mountains, Melbourne, Australia
  • Fabulous Festival of Fringe, curated by Christina Battle, ON, Canada
  • Echo Park Film Center 18th Anniversary Salon Marathon, LA, US

  • Festival Strangloscope, Florianópolis, Brazil
  • Edinburgh International Film Festival, Scotland, UK
  • Unseen Film Festival, curated by Jean Jacques Martinod, Boulder, Colorado, US
  • VTape, Medi(t)ating the Temporality of the Untimely, Toronto, Ontario
  • Channels: Quarterly Film Series, Nightingale Cinema Chicago, US
  • Another Experiment by Women Film Festival CUNY, NY, US
  • Material Desire and Experimental Film: Color and Chemistry, Kim Knowles
  • Duke University, Durham, NC, US

  • International Film Festival Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • Glasgow Film Festival Scotland, UK
  • Chicago Underground Film Festival, US
  • EXiS Experimental Film & Video Festival, South Korea
  • Exposure Kopernik Observatory, curated by Tomonari Nishikawa NY, US
  • Media City Film Festival, Windsor, Detroit, Can, US
  • Kinosmiðja, Terra Long short films inspirations, Reykjavík, Icelan
  • LEC, Terra Long Short Films + inspirations, CDMX, Mexico

  • Toronto International Film Festival, Wavelengths, Toronto, Canada
  • Jihlava International Film Festival Czech Republic
  • Light Field Film Festival San Francisco, US
  • Dobra Festival Internacional de Cine Experimental, Brazil
  • L.A Film Forum, Mysteries Inside Facts Curated by David Dinnell, LA, US
  • NW Film Center, Portland, OR
  • Bain Argentiques International Film Labs Meeting, Nantes, France
  • Toronto Film and Media Seminar, TIFF LightBox, Toronto, Canada
  • Parallax Visions films by Terra Long Visions, La Lumiere Montreal, Canada
  • Momentum Film and Video Collective Terra Long Films, U of Windsor, Canada

  • CPH:DOX Curated by Olafur Eliasson, Copenhagen DK
  • No.W.Here with Gil Delindro Another World is Possible, London, UK
  • Zhulong Gallery From “Man and His World” to the End of the World, Dallas, US
  • Chicago Underground Film Festival, Chicago, US

  • Edinburgh International Film Festival, Scotland UK
  • Images Film Festival Toronto, Canada
  • Antimatter [Media + Art], Victoria, Canada
  • Chicago Underground Film Festival, Chicago US
  • Imagining Crisis Conference Toronto, York University, Toronto, Canada

  • IDFA, International Documentary Festival Amsterdam, NL
  • DOXA Documentary Film Festival, Vancouver, Canada
  • Chicago Underground Film Festival, Chicago, US
  • Another Experiment by Women, Anthology Film Archives, NYC, US

Selected Editor Credits & Screenings

  • Landfall / 2020 / 93 min/ Dir. Cecilia Aldarondo
    Tribeca Film Festival, IDFA, DOCNYC Grand Jury Prize, PBS (POV) broadcast
  • Lichen / 2019/ 3D IMAX/ 10 min/ Dir. Lisa Jackson
    Sundance Film Festival, Images Festival closing night
  • 1999 / 2018/ NFB/ 85 min. Dir. Samara Chadwick
    Hot Docs Film Festival, Visions du Réel, Quebec Theatrical, CBC
  • The Quiet Zone / 2016 / 50 min. Dir. Daniel Froidevaux + Elisa Gonzales
    Hot Docs Film Festival, DOXA, Big Sky Film Festival
  • The Wind Sleeps Standing Up / 2017 / 12 min Dir. Sharlene Bamboat
    Images Festival, RIDM

Grants, Residencies & Awards

  • Concept to Realization Canada Council for the Arts (CCA)
  • Murmurations with Chris Watson and Jez Riley French

  • Research Creation Canada Council for the Arts CCA
  • Travel Grant for Edinburgh International Film Festival CCA

  • Chalmers Fellowship Recipient Ontario Arts Council
  • Travel Grant for International Film Festival Rotterdam CCA

  • Mobile Frames International Artist in Residence Windsor / Detroit

  • The Weight of Mountains Artist in Residence, Morocco
  • Travel Grant for International Artist Residency Canada Council for the Arts

  • York University Cinema and Media Studies Thesis Prize Nominee

  • Graduate Development Fund York University
  • Independent Imaging Retreat, Film Farm, Mount Forest, Canada

  • Technicolor Film Scholarship
  • Fieldwork Cost Fund York University

  • Daryl Duke & William Vince Scholarship British Columbia Film Foundation
  • Professional Development BC Arts Council
  • Filmmaker Assistance Program National Film Board

Artist Talks & Workshop Facilitation

  • Echo Park Film Center Film Friends with F4A Collective
  • Williams College Thinking Through Sound Workshop

  • RIDM Rough Cut Lab
  • Editing Master Class Summer Doc Lab UnionDocs, NYC, US

  • Site + Cycle film processing workshop Artscape, Toronto Island, Canada
  • Independent Imaging Retreat, Film Farm, Mount Forest, Canada

  • The New Alchemists Denison University, Ohio, US
  • Film Strip as Canvas painting on film, Denison University Ohio
  • Site + Cycle eco processing retreat Casa Anima Rural, Jalisco, Mexico
  • Independent Imaging Retreat, Film Farm, Mount Forest, Canada
  • Artist Talk Doc Media Master class Ryerson University
  • RIDM Film Festival Talent Lab Facilitator
  • Some Assembly Required Hot Docs Film Festival

  • 16MM hand processing workshop film production class Bard College
  • Screening and Artist Talk in Ephraim Asili’s film course Bard College

  • Dinosaurs in the Anthropocene Toronto Film and Media Seminar TIFF
  • Parallax Visions for Film Production Seminar class Ryerson University
  • Independent Imaging Retreat, Film Farm, Mount Forest, Canada

  • Notes from the Anthropocene for film production class York University
  • Independent Imaging Retreat, Film Farm, Mount Forest, Canada

  • Sound and Frame for film production class McMaster University
  • Thinking Through Sound Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto

  • Escuela Internacional de Cine y Televisión, Process Cinema, Phil Hoffmann
  • Teaching Assistant, San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba
  • Filmmentor Facilitator Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto

Publications & Writing

  • Knowles, Kim. “Experimental Film and Photochemical Practices.” Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020
  • Long, Terra. “Hand Processing in the Sahara Desert and Finding No.W.Here.” in Process Cinema: Handmade Film in the Digital Age. Eds. Janine Marchessault and Scott MacKenzie. Montreal: McGill University Press, 2019
  • Mulvogue, Jessica “Catastrophe Aesthetics: the Moving Image and the Mattering of the World” Transformations 30 (2017): 40 – 55


  • 2014 Master of Fine Arts Film School of the Arts, Media, Performance and Design York University, Toronto, Canada. Thesis: Notes From the Anthropocene
  • 2008 Bachelor of Fine Arts, Double Major Simone de Beauvoir Institute & Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada

Boards | Collectives

  • 2014 — Ongoing, Independent Imaging Retreat (Film Farm) with Philip Hoffman, Christine Harrison, Rob Butterworth, Deirdre Logue, Scott Miller Berry   
  • 2016 — Ongoing, Film for Artists Collective with Zoë Heyn Jones, Eva Kolcze, TJ Ediger
  • 2016 — 2017 Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Center