Monday, November 21, 2011

BTTC's Holiday Edition

Breaking Through The Clouds Newsletter 
Newsletter #10
  November 2011

Welcome to the newsletter about:

Breaking Through The Clouds: The First Women's National Air Derby. 

It's hard to believe the holidays are here!  As we all get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving this week, I recognize how much I truly have to be thankful for.  It's been an amazing year! Below are some of the highlights as well as a special thank you to a few of the people who have helped along the way. 

In addition, there are some details in this newsletter about a special holiday deal regarding the BTTC DVD & women pilots' watches.

May you be surrounded by those you love this Thanksgiving and experience much joy.  With sincere thanks from me to all of you.


Heather Taylor, Executive Producer
Archetypal Images, LLC
In This Issue
Awards of the Year
Special Deal: Pioneer Package
BTTC Ambassadors
DVD Available for the Holidays
BTTC Tshirts Available
Blog Series Forthcoming

Some highlights this year for BTTC

BTTC received some stellar awards and kudos this year.  Among the highlights are:
  • The Combs Gates Award from the National Aviation Hall of Fame
  • The David Ponce Award for Best of the Festival, Chagrin Documentary Film Festival
  • Utopia Vision Award, Utopia Film Festival
  • Best Documentary DMV, REEL Independent Film Extravaganza
BTTC was the "official selection" of nearly 12 film festivals this past year.  I attended AirVenture, the Women in Aviation Conference, Family Day at the National Air & Space Museum, screened the film as part of the 100th anniversary of the National Exchange Club, the Cradle of Aviation Museum in NY, and gave a presentation at the AOPA Summit.

Of course meeting Harrison Ford and some of aviation's most accomplished men, while representing the 20 women of the derby was not just a highlight of the year, but a highlight of my professional career! 

HF & Hat
Photo Courtesy of NBAA

Believe it or not, I still have some big dreams for BTTC.  With the help of all of you, perhaps 2012 will see the realization of one of my biggest dreams yet.  I will keep everyone posted as I work towards this goal. 

Meanwhile, thank you ALL for your support along this journey. 

*Reminder that Heather is available for speaking engagements, presentations and screenings of the film.  You can learn more on my website or email me to discuss options:

A Special Deal with AbingdonCo

Archetypal Images has teamed up with The AbingdonCo, maker of  watches for women pilots, to offer a special deal for the holidays.  For the month of November and December, receive 20% off the Pioneer Package with AbingdonCo.  This package includes the "Amelia" watch for female pilots and a copy of BTTC!

To see the Amelia watch, learn about the details and/or place an order, go to: Pioneer Package

You can also read Abingdon's press release here:
The perfect gift for Women Aviators:
Orders placed at:
 Pioneer Package

BTTC Ambassadors 

I am continually humbled and amazed by the various people who help me along this journey. There is certainly no way I could have come this far alone! While so very many are incredibly helpful, there are some people who really go the extra mile. Below are three women who deserve special recognition.

Laura Smith: Laura, a pilot for one of the major airlines, started a group called Council for Women Pilots. Laura embodies what I have been advocating in BTTC regarding women working TOGETHER to support one another.  Without question, Laura has been one of my biggest cheerleaders, often putting my accomplishments in her newsletter, Aviatrix Aerogram.  I think Laura would have fit in well with the women of the derby as her passion for aviation is palpable.  Thank you, Laura for all your support and encouragement along the way!

Sue Hughes: Sue runs Powder Puff Pilot.  She has become quite the marketer, something I have yet to learn how to master.  With each accomplishment along the way, Sue has highlighted BTTC in her newsletter.  Thank you, Sue for your support over the past couple of years!  Sue is one of my many distributors.  You can learn more about her business at

Lynda Meeks: If you want to talk incredible dedication, devotion and a person who walks the talk, you need to know about Lynda Meeks.  Lydna was a pilot in the Army and has had an incredible career in aviation.  She so believes in the positive role models of girls in aviation, she dedicates her life full time to a non-profit organization she founded, Girls With Wings.  Like me, Lynda often pays out of pocket to go to various events.  I can't even begin to list all that she does in the name of girls in aviation.  Lynda's latest endeavor is as the author of Penelope Pilot.  She also runs a scholarship to help women earn their pilot's license.  Again, like me, Lynda doesn't even come close to breaking even on all the costs involved in what she does.  However, she soldiers on because she believes in what she's doing and it IS making a difference.  Please support her and her vision by visiting  Lydna has become a friend and sister in arms (wings). 
Lynda & Hat at NASM
Heather Taylor & Lynda Meeks at National Air & Space Museum

Thank you to the extraordinary women listed above and thanks to all who are BTTC Ambassadors.
Quick Links for Breaking Through The Clouds:
The First Women's National Air Derby
BTTC Website:

BTTC Facebook Page has the latest updates as they happen
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BTTC TWITTER ACCOUNT: @breakingclouds
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Follow along on more detailed writings on the BTTC Blog

Visit our blog

BTTC You Tube
Please click "like" and/or make comments. 

Join BTTC Newsletter

BTTC Makes a Great Gift for the Holidays
Below is a layout that General Aviation News created for their Magazine.Stocking Stuffer
The DVD is available at: 

The inspiring true story of 20 women who raced across America in 1929.  

Follow along as headline aviatrixes Amelia Earhart, Pancho Barnes, Phoebe Omlie, Bobbi Trout and Louise Thaden race across the country during nine amazing days in the summer of 1929.
Breaking Through The Clouds provides over two hours of captivating viewing with original footage from the women who flew in the 1929 air derby and from the race itself.

Beautiful aerial recreations place the viewer in the pilot's seat.  Interviews with legendary pilots Elinor Smith Sullivan, Patty Wagstaff, Julie Clark, family members of the original pilots & aviation historians bring the story alive.

With 23 minutes of bonus material included, the film features challenges the women faced during the race, what the women wore and more information about the planes & navigation in 1929. 

Available at:
BTTC Cost $30 plus S&H

*Note:For those who do not like to order on-line or use pay pal, email me at Heather@
to work out other arrangements. If you have not heard from me within a week,  please call 865-242-7551.  My preference is email when possible (so I can keep better track of everything) but sometimes emails have technical glitches.  Thank you. 
Join Our Mailing List
If you know someone who would like to receive these newsletter,s please feel free to forward to them and have them join the  mailing list.

       BTTC T-shirts

Both black BTTC and white BTTC t-shirts are available.  Below is what the front of a black t-shirt looks like.  The back has written in the top middle part. 

If you would like a t-shirt, send me an email.  The cost is $20 plus postage. Heather@breakingthroughtheclou 
BTTC T-shirt (black).  White T-shirts with a black Logo are also available.

*PLEASE NOTE: Occasionally peoplel tell me they sent an email & I didn't respond.  This is one of the curses of the electronic age as I am not aware when I do not receive an email.  If you haven't heard a response from me within a week (typically much sooner), chances are I have not received the email.  You can call me at 865-242-7551, though my preference is email first.

Blog Series

I anticipate writing a series via the BTTC blog this winter regarding some of the trials and tribulations experienced these past 14 years in producing BTTC.  There have been extreme highs and extreme lows.  Some challenges have included leaving my job at Discovery only to have the financial meltdown happen 3 months later, my cameraman rushed to the emergency room one week before the aviation recreation shoot, the snow blizzard of the century while I was commuting to the post production facility, a power outage the final day of off-line editing and reaching Bobbi Trout (last living pilot from the derby) the very week she passed away.

Many of the high points have been touched upon in this newsletter regarding the awards.  Other amazing moments include meeting Elinor Smith, Patty Wagstaff, family members and friends of the original pilots (many at the premiere), the premiere (!) and getting to know so many incredible and supportive people on this journey. 

Besides my journey producing the film, I plan to blog about some of the details within the film such as matching the sound of the engines to the plane taking off on screen. 

You can sign up to follow the blog here:
Visit our blog

As long as my power stays on and my time isn't spent shoveling snow all day, I expect to write over the winter months.  I also expect to take steps forward regarding some other exciting developments so stay tuned! 
What is Breaking Through The Clouds?
Breaking Through The Clouds: The First Women's National Air Derby is a documentary about 20 female pilots, including Amelia Earhart, who raced across the country for 9 days in August 1929 to prove that women could fly.  They chased their dream and encountered cultural stereotypes, navigation challenges, threats of sabotage, mechanical difficulties and endless chicken dinners.  The women persevered and became pioneering legends in aviation.  Their story is inspiring to anyone who has the courage to follow their own dream.

Heather Taylor had a calling to tell this inspiring story in the hopes of helping others to find the courage to search for their own path.  While Heather hasn't had to deal with the endless chicken dinners like the women in the derby did, she does face the challenges of an an independent artist.  By spreading the word and supporting the film, you are helping Heather and other struggling artists reach for the sky in their own way and work towards breaking through the clouds.
Thank you. 
Heather Taylor, Executive Producer
Archetypal Images, LLC
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