Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Movie Is You

Life, no matter where you are or who you are, is never boring. Oh, you may say your life is boring, but I'll bet it's not and, allow me to be a bit of a Pollyanna here.  If you looked, really looked, you'd find really interesting things. But who has time to look, right? When is there ever a chance for you to sit and watch the clouds make interesting shapes? The people who just shot the photos of that space chunk, obviously, found it more than interesting and they found the outline of a face on it. Kind of like the face we see in the moon, isn't it? You've seen that face hundreds, thousands of time. The Lumiere brothers saw it and they did something with it. Ever see that silent film where the rocket hits the moon in the face?

They were film pioneers and they did films on everything mundane you can imagine. Who wants to see people leaving a factory in the early 20th century? I'll bet many of us want to see what life was like then. What about a train arriving into a station? Yes, I want to see that, too. Ah, but perhaps I'm just one of those people with my head in the clouds. I'd like to see that, too, if only I had a drone with a camera attached.

Your life is a movie and all the people who came before you, those in your life now and those in the future deserve to see what it is like for you. But you say you're not creative and you can't afford software or equipment.

If you have a cell phone, you have a film camera and (an app can cost less than $1) and you have software and I know you have a computer, so you have all the basic equipment you need. Now all you need to do is just film away, keep it on a nice big (or not so big) external pocket drive or a USB and you are set to begin laying out that film. I'm tempted to say "little film" but that sounds so pejorative to me. When I say "little" I mean it in the nicest way. Make it four minutes and keep at it until you really like what you've produced.

Do you know a website called Triggerstreet? It was started by Kevin Spacey to encourage anyone with any type of video equipment and a tiny bit of imagination to make films. The site has flourished and grown enormously and, in the process, it's gotten more sophisticated.  Probably the one thing that keeps people from posting films anywhere (try Youtube) is that they are concerned about any comments they may get.

Well, don't post it anywhere, then, and just keep it for yourself and a few select people. That's okay, too. One of the best films I saw was on that site. The title was "Sleep" and it was just a few minutes long. I loved it. No, it's not about insomnia or anything medical.

Life is here today and I think it should be memorialized in films about our lives, what we do, where we go and who is in our lives. A friend's mother recently had her 90th birthday party. She is one of the most delightful, warm and loving people I've ever met. She's been deaf all her life and now she's nearly blind, but she still projects that love and wants to make you comfortable. Cooks, cleans, wants to do laundry and have you sit and have something to eat. I love her and so does everyone else in her life. She's a living treasure.

A suggestion to the friend prompted a very short video of her thanking friends for a birthday gift. She signed and also voiced her appreciation for it and now everyone who loves her has a copy of it. The moment might have come and gone and we would have missed it if not for that suggestion.

Remember what any photographer or videographer worth their salt will tell you; just shoot and keep on shooting. You will get something worthwhile but you may not realize it at the time.

So, what's your project going to be?

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