Director to Premiere Film of Pendleton Saddle Maker on Sept. 13

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Monte Beckman
A new film about Pendleton saddle maker Monte Beckman will be shown at the Pendleton Center for the Arts on Sept. 13. (Photo: Pendleton Center for the Arts)

Director Laine Perry premieres her 30-minute film, The Maker’s Mark, on Thursday, Sept. 13 at the Pendleton Center for the Arts.

Showtime is 6 p.m. in the Center’s Bamboo Room.

Perry says that she knew early in their decades old friendship that she would make a visual project about her friend, saddle maker Monte Beckman. Perry says that Beckman’s standard of excellence was not easily matched. A humble perfectionist, Beckman also impressed Perry with his willingness to share his knowledge with anyone who wandered in to his saddle shop with a curiosity about the art.

“Monte was a people person,” says Perry. When the two met in Colorado in the early 1990s, Beckman’s saddle shop was the heart of the town he was in. “It was amazing to be a part of that saddle shop environment in those days. You never knew what would happen and who might stop by. It was a good place to hear some incredible stories, share some laughs and watch a master at work on his craft,” says Perry.

When asked why she made The Maker’s Mark, Perry says that one of the first things she learned about Monte was that he had five boys who weren’t in his life much.

“I saw the way the truth of his situation weighed on him,” said Perry. Years later when Monte suffered a stroke and was forced to retrain his arms to be able to continue making saddles, all five of Beckman’s sons came to Pendleton to help keep his shop doors open.

“As a filmmaker, and as a friend, I wanted to make a movie about Monte’s sons coming back into his life because it’s important to know that miracles happen whether we are willing to ask for them, or not,” she said. “The Maker’s Mark celebrates that.”

Tickets to the screening are $8 and available at pendletonarts.org, by calling 541-278-9201, or at the door.

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