Sandy Cannon-Brown

VideoTakes, Inc.
2230 California St. NW Suite 2CW
Washington, DC 20008-3952

phone: 410.745.9367

News and Updates

Sandy Cannon-Brown founded VideoTakes, Inc. on October 31, 1985.  Although she now works as an independent filmmaker, Cannon-Brown keeps the VideoTakes brand of excellence going strong in her environmental films.  Current projects focus on the sustainability of the Chesapeake Bay and its resources. 

Sandy Cannon-Brown spent several days in September with six stalwart kayakers who circumnavigated the 500-mile Delmarva Peninsula.  The journey was an initiative of Upstream Alliance, a new organization dedicated to fostering a new generation of environmental leaders and stewards.  Highlights of the trip will air on Maryland Public Television’s Outdoors Maryland early next year.

Kayakers paddle past Ocean City, MD, as they circumnavigate the Delmarva peninsula in September.

Beautiful Swimmers Revisited, the film about the Bay’s iconic blue crab, is slated to premiere at the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital in March 2016.  You can catch sneak previews and learn more about the film at these events:

November 13 at 7 p.m.
Dorchester Center for the Arts
Wild and Scenic Film Festival
Hosted by the Midshore Riverkeeper Conservancy

November 20 at 6 p.m.
Avalon Theatre in Easton, MD
Wild and Scenic Film Festival
Hosted by the Midshore Riverkeeper Conservancy

February 25 at 2:00 p.m.
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
St. Michaels, MD

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Beautiful Swimmers Revisited  Advances to Post-Production:

Inspired by 1976 Pulitizer Prize-winning Bestseller

Sandy Cannon-Brown on Smith Island during production of Beautiful Swimmers Revisited.

November 2015 – VideoTakes wraps up production on Beautiful Swimmers Revisited this month as the crab season comes to a close on the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.  The film, an initiative of the Bay Journal, is inspired by William W. Warner’s 1976 Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Beautiful Swimmers: Watermen, Crabs and the Chesapeake Bay.

Sandy Cannon-Brown and her partners, writer/host Tom Horton and producer/photographer Dave Harp, were on the water more than 20 days during the summer learning about the state of crabs and crabbing from watermen, scientists, and fishery managers. 

“Warner’s book has never been out of circulation. Nothing published since, including James Michener’s blockbuster Chesapeake, has surpassed it,” Horton said. “Today’s Chesapeake is not the same bay in which William Warner conducted his inquiries of crabs and crabbing during the 1960s and ’70s. Yet much remains. In remoter parts of the estuary, it is still possible to revisit Warner’s storied haunts, even to catch-up with characters in Beautiful Swimmers.”

The blue crab inhabits every niche from the deep channels to the marshes, and the ocean to the limits of tide miles up the rivers. Any long-term changes in crab populations would have major consequences for the whole ecosystem. If crabs were to fail, the economies of communities like Smith Island would crumble. When crab abundance in the Bay is low, as it was in 2014, the whole region takes an economic hit.

Horton’s timely script, brought to life by Cannon-Brown and esteemed Bay photographer David Harp, will investigate the whys and wherefores of the trends as it weaves a colorful tale that entertains, educates and enlightens.

Horton, who covered the environment for the Baltimore Sun for 35 years, has written eight books about the Chesapeake Bay. His honors include the John Burroughs Award for the best book of nature writing, the David Brower award from the Sierra Club, and other awards from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the Audubon Society. Most recently, outgoing governor Martin O’Malley honored Horton as an Admiral of the Chesapeake. He currently is a Professor of Practice in Environmental Studies at Salisbury University.

To learn more about the film, and to make a much-appreciated donation, go to


National Park Service Video Shows How Modern Technology Saves Historic Workboat


St. Michaels, MD – VideoTakes’ President Sandy Cannon-Brown is working with the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum to document the authentic restoration of Edna E. Lockwood, the last surviving bugeye on the Chesapeake Bay.

Cannon-Brown was there as the National Park Service’s Heritage Documentation Program scanned and photographed every inch of the hull to show how Edna was put together piece by piece.

The project is part of the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) ‪Maritime Documentation Program, with the produced measured drawings added to the HABS/HAER/HALS Collection in The Library of Congress to document the last working oyster boat of her kind. The information was turned into  a 3D model (see video) to aid shipwrights and apprentices in the restoration of the Edna E. Lockwood. 

The first challenge to Edna’s restoration is finding the southern yellow pine logs required to replace Edna’s bottom. Twelve logs measuring 52” in length and 3- to 4-feet in diameter are needed. Wherever and whenever CBMM finds these logs, Cannon-Brown will be there to capture the activity!