filmmaker

It's been a while

Let's see... since my last post in January about going to Sundance to show parts of my short film, The Unlost, a lot has happened.

In February, I travelled to Rome for work and spent two extra days exploring the city before heading back to Boise.

In March, I travelled to Cambodia for a week for a volunteer service project.

In early April, like this past week, I travelled to Las Vegas for NAB.

As of now, I have no solid plans for future travel, but I'm leaving it open for possible festival showings of The Unlost, more travel for work, and possibly more volunteer travel. For now, I'm content sitting at home with my dog at my feet and my three cats ignoring me, while I edit together a few documentaries about my trip to Cambodia and what 17 volunteers from Boise were doing there.

We only returned from Cambodia on April 1st, so I'm still trying to process my trip and what we all accomplished there. I was back at work that Monday, spent a week working and dealing with post-3rd-world-country-body-issues, then on Sunday, April 8th, I was in Vegas experiencing the world on a completely different level than that of Cambodia. Let's just say, my brain, heart, and soul are still processing everything. The world is a magnificent, yet heartbreaking place.

Without delving too deeply into the service project (I'm saving that for my documentaries) I will say that spending a week carrying around my own toilet paper and urinating in a hole in the ground, was a stark difference from walking through crowds of people wearing suits spending loads money on film equipment. I'm not saying that either of those lifestyles are wrong, or right, they're just different. And to walk into a bathroom in Vegas while attending NAB, was it's own experience after waiting in line to use a bowl of water to flush the "toilet" in Cambodia. Both of these aspects of the world are a part of my life, and both for similar reasons - FILM. I went to Cambodia to volunteer for a human rights project, but to also shoot a documentary for the non-profit organization that organizes this project. I went to NAB to look at all the cool new equipment, software, and hardware that is available to us filmmakers so that we can create these documentaries. It's a beautiful juxtaposition. And it's my life in this unexpected year of 2018.

While I have been quiet on this blog and in my personal life, it's not to say that nothing is happening. More than I expected is happening and I'm doing my ultimate best to keep up with all of it. I'm transitioning from full-time student/full-time employee for a large company, to full-time employee of a large company/full-time freelance filmmaker. My days, nights, and weekends are filled with film, while I also do my best at having a personal life. Those leaves from last fall aren't going to rake themselves.

Day 3

I'm doing it tonight, because I said I would. I actually have a lot to write about, but I find myself at 10:30 at night needing to get ready for bed. Last night's five hours was not enough to survive. Well, I actually did alright on five hours of sleep, but it's not fair to get back into that habit so quickly. While I was in school, I was pulling 4-5 hours of sleep a night. I managed to make it through, but I was exhausted every day. There were a lot of afternoons where I would fall asleep at my desk. I don't think my eyes shut for more than a couple minutes, but it's never good to attempt to function in that manner. It's not fair to you and it's not fair to your job. So, I'll keep tonight's post short.

I talked to an ex-pro football player at the gym tonight for over a half hour. He had a lot of wisdom to pass on regarding fitness, nutrition, and life. A lot of what he talked about was in regards to football and training and training and training, which can be translated to what it takes to be a filmmaker. Practice, practice, practice. Every film we create, every opportunity we have to participate in a film project in some capacity is more practice for our art. Even if we don't feel strongly about the project, or just plain want a weekend free, if you committed to that film project, do it, with all your heart. At the same time, don't overcommit yourself. If you want a weekend to yourself, book that calendar for YOU! I need to remember to do this, my weekends are booking up fast.

Another thing he mentioned in regards to working out is quality over quantity. This is in reference to doing reps, like lifting weights. Don't speed through your weight lifting in order to do more reps, but lift with a slow and intentional purpose. The more intentional your lift, the more muscle you'll build. Again, this can be said for filmmaking. Don't rush through a film project just so you can say you shot something this month. Or because you feel left out because everyone else is making a movie and therefore I have to make mine!!! Make a quality film! Not more! Understand that pre-production takes more than just considering where in your living room you're going to shoot your scene. Production takes more than just showing up with a camera. Post-production takes more than just slapping a few clips together. Of course, there is a time and place for those productions and if done right, can be one hell of a film. There are 48-hour film contests that force a group of filmmakers to create a film in 48 hours, or less. These are valuable experiences, and I must say, some of the films that I've seen created for our local 48-hour film festival are crazy-good. These experiences, in fact, have helped me with productions at work. More often than not, I receive a request to create a video in less than a week, while also creating other videos, answering emails, attending meetings, and doing any other number of things that must be done in a 40-hour work-week. It's insane, but I do my best work. I give as much quality as I can, while delivering quantity. But in my personal films? Quality over quantity - always.

And that's more than I expected to write tonight. 11 minutes and this is what I wrote! Let's see if I can get in bed by 11pm tonight, so I can grab 6 hours of sleep!

Still Going Strong!

Made it to my second day of blogging! And that's about all I have to say about that.

Tonight is my first night without homework in nearly three years and guess what I've been doing since I got home? Sitting at my computer. I'm working through my director's cut of my thesis film, The Unlost, so have been sending messages to various people who still have a hand in post-production. I've also actually answered personal emails, which is something I completely neglected for the last 32 months. I'd answer anything important, but most of the time, I would mark my emails as unread and hope that I got to them in a decent amount of time. It's weird that I don't have any homework to do, yet I still find myself "working" on my various film projects after working all day at my day job on those film projects. Okay, continuing to work on films after I get home is not weird, that's just what I do, but still... I guess I have a difficult time sitting idle.

I bought a few books to keep me busy and help me realign with myself. I want to practice mindfulness and experience peace in all aspects of my life. I want to be the best version of myself that I can be. And while I was still ME while I was in school, I wasn't the best me. Life was rough. I would work, a lot, then come home and immediately sit at my computer to start my schoolwork. Weekends were riddled with homework and film projects and I got to a point where I was a big bucket of stress and nothing could stop the train that I was on. Perhaps that's why I'm having such a difficult time coming down from all of it. I'm not just a talker, I'm a doer. If I say I'm going to do something, I go out there and I do it to the best of my ability. So, I'm constantly doing. And I'm okay with that. We'll see how well I keep doing this blog - I still have my doubts. 

Speaking of practicing mindfulness and making me the best version of myself that I can be, I'm going to step away from this computer and start a yoga regimen from one of the books I bought last week. My goal is to be able to stretch again, feel good about myself, experience peace, AND lose those extra pounds I gained by the time I need to wear my nice pants again. So I don't have to buy new ones. I have about a month-and-a-half. OMG! I can do this.