Ugh. For a summer off, I sure feel busy. Teaching classes, shooting new material for FRAMELINES, and paid work for clients means Iím not so much getting time off as much as I am not doing anything for me. In the end, it will be okay. The butter is churning in my brain. Some ideas are forming and soon I will be making the movies again. And not just simple podcasts either.
Last weekend was fun. The HORROR HOTEL, from the INDIE GATHERING folks, was a chance to sell some DVDís and books. Given the genre, my old film HORRORS OF WAR/NAZI ZOMBIES was at the forefront of interest. This time, I was intent on giving away a lot of stuff for free, so some FRAMELINES DVDís and prints of articles I've written for Videomaker Magazine went out to as many people as could take them.
My summer just got booked up real fast. I have been invited to be a panelist or moderator for indie film panels at 3 different events, two of which are coming up in June. Next weekend Iíll have a vendor booth to sell my wares, but this time Iím bringing a ton of free stuff to give away, some articles and bonus materials. I will be quite visible in the indie film world this summer.
The past few weeks have been a flurry of furry. I adopted a little kitten. I was told she was 8 weeks old and already eating hard food. Turns out that was a lie. She was a little over 3 weeks old and had not been weaned off of her mommaís nipple. So that meant bottle feeding a kitten every 2-3 hours like an infant, plus she was too young to sleep on her own since she wasnít capable of maintaining her own body heat yet. That meant light sleeping out of fear of rolling over her and crushing under my enormous fatness.
The last couple weeks have really sucked. My health took a massive turn for the worse. What started as basic conjunctivitis quickly turned into a serious threat to losing all vision in my left eye because of the MRSA I have. Yesterday was a flurry of doctor visits getting shuffled around from one emergency place to another. Luckily, all is well as the new medication is working wonderfully and fast. I am so grateful to those who came to my rescue on this one.
Weather warms, heart lifts, and yet the body crumbles. I have conjunctivitis and it really hurts. I cannot see out of my left eye. At least I got 2 things edited before I this travesty kit. I have decided that this summer I intend to take it way easy, just relax and do a minimal amount of film/video work. I want to drink wine and watch the sunsets, have people over to grill out, and watch movies into the wee hours.
Weeks later and I am still sick. Coughing, voice gone, throat shredded. I hate feeling like this. When I was a kid, getting sick meant staying home from school and watching TV. Now it means terror of not making a mortgage payment because no work = no pay. Everything has been pushed off to the side because I canít stay focused for very long.
I have had a really strange week or so. I went from being violently ill to a hotbed of writing for college to almost getting fired which transformed into a new job and a raise. How funny that someone trying to get me fired turned into a significant increase in my annual salary. Karma loves me. It must explain why so many good things keep happening in my life of late.
So I hit a major milestone with my main YouTube account; one million combined views. Back in 2006, I already had all of my short films made by then on a myriad of video websites, including iFilm.com, Atomfilms.com, Triggerstreet.com, Reelmind.com, movieflix.com, undergroundfilms.com, and a slew of others - not a single one of which exists today as a platform for distribution like Youtube, owned by Google (which sadly had Google Video that I was entirely invested in with videos). So when Youtube started up, I had fatigued on keeping up with uploading my 30+ short films to every single site and thought this one wouldnít be any different. Boy was I wrong.
Did a big shoot this past weekend with a world famous body builder. I was run ragged after the big national TV spot ad campaign, but decided to do this anyway. Money is money, and the guy was way cool to work for. I also put some money into a friendís pocket as an assistant for the day. I didnít even need the help, but spreading the good will always pays out in karmic debt.
One of the perpetually fascinating aspects of filmmaking in the Internet era remains how fragile egos can be. I guess what really keeps me interested is when people try to write things with the intent to hurt feelings in the exact same way the a grade schooler would. Writing things like ďyou suck!Ē or ďyouíre an ass!Ē are supposed to evoke a reaction, but the only one I get are chuckles at the simplistic and rather pedestrian attempts at angering me.
The past several days have really sucked. I got the flu whilst in the middle of the national ad campaign. I managed to get my work done, but practically nothing else. It was work, nap, work, nap and no time to so much as look at a few emails. My head hurts, canít taste anything, snot pouring from my nose, and a fever. Thank god for the people who have been taking care of me.
The snow and the cold; not fun. Buried in a mountain of a few hundred TV spots I have to make and upload. I have a few breaks for render time. I might be sleeping on some of those little short breaks. Working long hours including Friday nights and all weekend are normal for this project. Oddly, I love this work. I love what I do for a living, and I am loving life so much these days.
Things are a-boominí in my world at the moment. Inundated with work, most especially paid work. The semi-annual national ad campaign is in full swing meaning I have practically no time for anything in the next week or so. Iím trying to just stay afloat. Waves of odd contradictory emotions crash over me. Overall, life absolutely does NOT suck right now. Creativity hampered by age and life equal a better existence.
The last year or so of my life has been pretty darn good. I am enjoying life on a semi-daily basis for so many reasons. I am keeping busy, doing work for myself, my clients, and teaching my students. I have a home that I love deeply. The core group of friends I choose to spend time with elevate me and provide support.
At the moment, I need to indulge the need to vent a little about people that have become an irritant.
Shot 5 new greenscreen segments last night at the studio. One of my classes did a field trip so I could show them more advanced lighting, which of course was set up by someone that ainít me. Iím not a gaffer (chief lighting technician), nor am I much of a camera operator. My main job was to be on air talent, read the lines from the teleprompter, then teach the almost unteachable.
Working hard to wrap up several episodes of FRAMELINES, closed captions going on the last 3 episodes for delivery this coming week for broadcast, and scheduling a few shoots, some large, some small. Got an epic greenscreen shoot this coming week that will get a ton of FRAMELINES as well as Sonnyboo Podcast elements. As I said in a recent blog, these things are a band aid to my need to make something more narrative soon.
I had almost forgotten about an idea I had for FRAMELINES, whereby we made an episode of all Tech Tips, something that was educational only. I took the best of what we had in Tech Tips, and had enough material for two full episodes at 26 minutes and 46 seconds each (the standard for our show). Host segments were shot and I am rendering the greenscreen elements out as I type.
Finished the 20th episode of FRAMELINES and could not be happier to get another episode completed. Outlining another 8 episodes with material yet to be shot, shot not edited, and completed clips. Some of the shoots I want to do in the near future related to getting the 2nd season all the way finished.
The creative process, the one inside your head, takes a toll on everything else. Much like dreams, no one can say how or why thoughts form in such a way when your mind wanders. And even more rare is the compulsion to take ideas like those and form them in reality. These days I value the end product more than the conception.