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Mendelson ’22 Honors Pandemic Victims Through Video


It was a pretty great winter-break job for a student of cinema: A Chicago musician hired Devin Mendelson ’22 to create videos for a website that remembers victims of the pandemic. As it turned out, his work was widely viewed.

A double major in cinema and media studies and creative writing, Mendelson was eager to take on the challenge. He’d followed the pandemic closely since its earliest days. “And so I wanted to do something about it, something to express how it has impacted people's lives. I'm grateful that it has not [led to] something horrible in my life, but I know that for millions of Americans, it has had a direct impact on them and their loved ones.”

His videos are part of wehaveloved.com, a website created by composer and producer Ira Antelis as a musical memorial. Antelis asked Mendelson to create the videos to accompany instrumental songs that Antelis composed.                                                  

Devin Mendelson ’22

Majors: Cinema and media studies, creative writing

Hometown: Chicago, Ill.

High School: Latin School of Chicago

read more about cinema and media studies

For the first song, titled A Moment is All We Have, Mendelson used images and relatively few written words to complement the piece. The result was a video that has had upwards of 250,000 views and counting.

For the second, A World In Mourning, Antelis asked Mendelson to use words rather than images. A lover of puzzles, Mendelson thought of a Scrabble board. “I've always been good at Scrabble. My dad hasn’t beaten me since he taught me how to play,” he said. The resulting video of interconnecting white words on a black background is starkly compelling. Mendelson has high expectations that it will exceed the number of views the first video received.

He’s hoping his first paying job making a video will be followed by many more. And movies. Mendelson aspires to a career as a director and/or screenwriter. “I always loved shows, and I love creative writing. And I love seeing stories put onto the screen. I really like the relationship between stories that are written and the visualization of said stories on the screen,” he said.

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