Guest Post by Merete Mueller, co-director and producer of the film.
“TINY: A Story About Living Small” is a short documentary about Christopher Smith’s process of building a tiny house from scratch with no building experience in the mountains of Colorado. The film also follows the lives of other families around the country who have downsized their lives to less than 400 square feet.
The project began back in February, when Christopher, also co-director, impulsively bought a plot of land with the dream of building a small cabin from scratch, himself. That cabin turned into a tiny house on wheels when he learned that building codes in Park County, Colorado would require him to build a house of at least 600-square feet. He realized that a house on wheels would allow him to bypass these laws, and the more that he learned about tiny houses, the more he liked the idea of minimally impacting the land he had bought by simply parking his small home on it, instead of digging a foundation into the ground.
Christopher, who has a background in filmmaking, happened to be looking for a film project at the time and I (Merete—the other half of the “TINY” team) nudged him to begin filming his building process. I remember seeing his excitement about establishing a home for himself—on his own terms and of his own design in a landscape that he
loves, and realized that his story of would be a great way to tell the larger story of the tiny house movement, profiling others who feel that living smaller allows them to have more satisfying, comfortable lives.
Nine months later, the exterior of the house is complete and the interior is well underway (the project has taken much longer than we expected, but we think it’s reasonable to say that it will be complete by January of 2012). In addition to building, we’ve also travelled around the country interviewing other tiny house owners, like this visit with Daniel Aragon in Telluride, below:
We’re interested in the ways that downsizing allows people to live more sustainable lives—both environmentally and financially. But most of all, we’re interested in exploring the idea of “home”—how we find and create the places where we feel most comfortable and at-ease.
After all, Christopher’s process of constructing his own tiny house is as much about building a life that feels right, as it as about the house that will contain it.
The filmmakers behind “TINY: A Story About Living Small” visit Derek Diedricksen, the micro-architect and author who has been featured in The New York Times, NPR, Readymade and MAKE Magazine.
If you would like to share your own experience of living small with us, or know of a tiny house that we should profile, please email us firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know!
TINY on Kickstarter
Right now until December 15, we’re running a fundraising campaign for the film on
You can visit our project on Kickstarter and choose from a variety of rewards—including an invite to the online premier of the film, a signed DVD, access to special “Behind the Scenes” footage, even a weekend in the tiny house—in exchange for backing our project. All of the money that we raise will go towards post-production costs of the film editing, recording the original score, sound editing, and sending the film to a finishing house.
Please visit Kickstarter now and help us make us bring the experience of living small to as many people as possible!