Sunday, October 23, 2011

What a shitty week

My grandma's in the hospital and they figure it'll be any day now. She's 96 and has had a pretty amazing life. Just last month she was out to conferences and out doing social things. Still, am afraid to open my email every day expecting the news. So it was an extra shot in the junk today when I checked my mail to find out our beagle, Molly, had to be put down. She was a great little dog, happy, curious, playful and loving. She was 16, which is about 96 in dog years. Go figure.

Anyway I'm a little broken hearted to say the least.

The other day I was sitting at sidewalk cafe table drinking a cappuccino and working on a short student film I'm editing. This drunk homeless looking aboriginal man had been stalking the sidewalk for a while, slugging a brown paper wrapped bottle of something and randomly asking for change. God knows we owe it to him. I don't know how good you are at your job, but this guy is an absolute prodigy at being a drunk homeless guy. If anyone deserves additional remuneration for their efforts and expertise at their chosen vocation, it was this guy.

On his third fly by of this particular row of cafes he stops at my table, looks at me and says, "that's dirty!" pointing at my Mac. I look up at him, his lips flakey and dry, teeth rotting and yellow from what I would assume is the result of years of crack or meth abuse. Noting how much he spit when he spoke, I covered my coffee with my hand.

"That's fucking dirty!" he reiterated, pointing again. "You should get a fucking life, your pathetic!" he slurred, struggling to to maintain his questionable balance.

"I've got a life pal, why don't you walk on now" I muttered, looking around the sidewalk for help from the other caffeine junkies on my block, most of whom are now engrossed in their newspapers, or some insignificant irregularity in their table cloth that has become monumentally important for the time being. Thanks

My domestically challenged friend launched into another tirade about how disgusting and pathetic I am when I finally looked at him and said "Im just trying to do some work here pal, go away please"

Now here's something interesting about people of an ethnic descent with a history of being displaced by invaders resulting in cycles of poverty lasting decades if not centuries. They don't like being told to go away. It's like the statement some how justifies or encourages the attempted genocide, or extermination of their culture. Now I've pissed him off

"oh, you'd fucking like that wouldn't you?" he spat with venom.
"yes, I would I replied, that's why I said it" a replied. Well, that confused him. It's like I used Eddie Murphy's Jedi mind trick on a dried out old crack head Mr. T. With that, he wandered away cursing the white man.

By this point I'm flying. Adrenalin had me all pumped up and spoiling for a fight. I'm in no mood to edit the kids movie I've been trying to cut. So I just sat there, drinking coffee. After a few minutes it dawned on me. The guy, the homeless guy that called me a pathetic loser, he wasn't relly being a dick. I thought he was paying me out for working on my computer at a coffee shop like some prissy wanna be script writer dying to be seen (guilty). But, now that I think about it, I think he was making a joke, like I was looking at porn on my computer and was trying to embarrass me, the way I would do to a buddy. Like that email that went around a few years ago that when you opened, it showed porn and a siren went off drawing the attention of all your coworkers, who would then bray like jackasses at your stupidity.

So, assuming I'm right, all that adrenaline and anger was over a joke that I misunderstood. Well, jokes on me then. Sorry homeless guy.
Homeless craziness -1
Wannabe script writer -0

Monday, October 3, 2011

Making movies - Freelance work

Here's an interesting thing about freelance work in art. A lot of the time you work alone. Hell, MOST of the time you work alone. The meetings, consultations and all that jazz take up only a small percentage of your time, its the actual production, where you roll up your sleeves and get things done where you spend the bulk of your time.

Here's an example. Take my upcoming job editing "The Fence" a short film a friend is producing. I will no doubt spend about 40 hours in the editing suite getting this done. The first 5 will just be organisational. They're shooting RED so I'm sure they will have overshot the hell out of everything. So I'll have to go through and pick out the usable takes, get rid of slates and end cuts.

The time actually working with the director and producer on this project will be quite minimal, until we get to the end of the edit. After that we will be living together for the next 30 hours or so hammering out the little details. Which take should we use to show the little boy's reaction. How many frames should we sit on that reaction before the cut. Which direction do we grade...etc etc.?

Happily I'm working with a team of editors during this project. We are all regular FCP users who are simultaneously learning Avid and have decided to work together to help each other grow as editors. This should be a fun, yet frustrating experience.

Another project I'm doing for the fence is creating a children's book as a prop. I sat down with the director, over the course of a few meetings, for about an hour, hashing out ideas. Now that we know what we want, I have to create it, which involves actually painting in the studio for several hours creating this book, then bringing that work into the computer digitally, fixing it up and sending, adding the text and creating a version for the print shop to produce the final product for us.

Working alone can have serious pitfalls that can slow down or even stop your workflow in its tracks. You need to have constant communication with your client. Missed communication can mean spending hours on an idea they didn't necessarily want, or is fundamentally flawed over some small detail. Sometimes this is just the product of the creative mind expanding on an already great idea. Other times it is a simple misunderstanding of the facts.

Lack of communication can mean waiting for important details that will allow you to move forward. Downtime is expensive. It can also mean not being privy to changes in a project. Often the off site supplier is forgotten in the decision making process when they can provide valuable information that may sway a decision one way or another.

Freelance work is a great way to earn a buck. You need to be disciplined, smart and open to alot of new ideas. The key creating a good working relationship with your clients, especially if much of your work will be off site and solo, is to keep the channels of communication open. Having those channels closed can be time consuming and costly.

Insomnia cures in australia

So I can't sleep. I went for a walk, watched tv. A friend suggested warm tea. Yeah I don't have tea.

So i decided to take matters into my own hands tonight. I made a turkey sandwich. With cheese. And a glass of wine. And a beer. AAAAND one of these ingenious little blue things that my doctor prescribed (not Viagra, moron) but they knock me right out. Usually. I'm REALLY wired tonight. HOWEVER, I think with my turkey, dairy, alcohol prescription medicine regiment I should be alright tonight.

In the mean time, Happy Days is on.

Insomnia on the high seas - Things to do late at night

So, the other morning I came home around 5 am and I was still wide awake. This whole insomnia thing is driving me nuts.

Last night I stayed up and was watching the Love Boat. They show reruns of shitty 80s tv shows here in the middle of the night. Like home.

Anyway. Gopher fell in love last night. To a beautiful rich italian girl who had a horrible italian accent. It was a to be continued episode. So I have to watch tonight to see how it turns out.

But then i realised, when I woke up around noon, that EVERY night, some staffer on the Loveboat falls in love. I mean, I've seen the captain fall in love at least 3 times, Adam ( the doctor, but we're on a first name basis, it is my blog) has fallen in love with several women an even married a russian...gymnast? contortionist? violinist? drunk? one of those stereotypical russian thingies.

TheLoveBoat_S1V1.jpgThis is my 5th time seeing gopher fall in love. And it occurred to me. Most cruises are between 5 and 7 days aren't they? Can someone fall in love, on a boat, in that amount of time? I mean, I'm suppose its possible. But then, lets say the crew is actually falling in love when they do. They must be falling out of love by the time of the next sailing. So they're falling in and out of love in the span of a week, once every couple of weeks. I think they should be aging faster.

The last time I fell in and out of love I had most of my hair. Ok, that was a while ago, but there is a noticeable difference in photographs between now and then.  Now, given that effect on me, I think it shows, scientifically, that the crew on the love boat are FAR too young looking to fall in and out of love so many times every year. Gopher still has all his hair, its not even grey. Isaac's fro stands as high as ever. Julie doesn't even have crows feet. And the doctor, well, lets be fair, he's probably been shooting himself up with HGH for decades. He could be 120 yrs old for all we know.

Television is full of shit.


I have two followers on my blog! AND THEY'RE CHICKS!!  I feel as popular as Tom from MySpace!

Ok, bye.