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21 November, 2009

Everything is bigger... except the lighting setups...

So Dallas was cool. Didn't actually see much of it (working, you know?) but what I did see was nice. The hotel was SWEET and the food was great.

As for the shoot, the producer managed to get together a budget to fly me down there and put us up in a nice place, but other than that, the production's hands were sort of tied. So we had to make do with only what we could bring with us (which wasn't much) - no rentals or anything. As for lighting, all we could manage was a softbox setup (daylight and tungsten) and a small fresnel. And you know what? It turned out pretty darn well. I've always said you can make great images with very little more than skill and Dallas really drove that home. Sure, we fought a little with the finicky sun and didn't have much to work with location-wise, but I think I was able to get some really nice lighting and composition for our interviews. I should really start taking pictures on-set.

Also, the PAs in Texas are awesome. There are great ones in New York, but there are also a ton of people who are just "trying to work in film." It seems like in Texas - and other non-NY locales - that the PAs are not trying to do anything. They're working and that's that. This is what they do and they know their stuff. The first day, we had Ben - young guy with a lot of camera and grip experience. The second day, we had Tom - a real veteran. He's done it all, from being a stand in for Chuck Norris on two seasons of Walker: Texas Ranger, to producing an indie feature and even a string of large-scale live events. What a guy! Nice, totally knowledgeable, and constantly one step ahead of the game. On top of all that, after we wrapped, he found us a great Texas BBQ joint. Wow.

16 November, 2009

What a day!

Today is November 16th, 2009. Nice day so far.

First I received a package - opened carefully, found something bubbled and wrapped in paper and an envelope. It was an award and a letter. Turns out my short film, Johnny B, was selected as one of the Ten Best of 2009 by the North American Movie Makers Awards (American Motion Picture Society). Needless to say, the cast, crew and I are all very happy.

Also, finally locked down a shoot in Dallas, TX. A corporate piece for Nokia and the Wunderman Agency. Heading down early Wednesday and returning Thursday night. Haven't been in Dallas since I was a baby (which I don't remember), so I'm definitely looking forward to it.

This is definitely an up week.

08 November, 2009

Slow week...


Last week had some cool stuff. First, an interview with the owner of the Village Vanguard (for the Babs DVD). The next day, I gaffed an interview for "American Masters" (Thirteen), with DP, Eddie Marritz. Eddie is a great cameraman and someone I've always looked up to. He was one of the DPs that I used to assist under as I was honing the craft and it was always a pleasure and a real learning experience to work with him. Earlier this year, I operated second camera under Eddie for an upcoming feature doc on magician, Ricky Jay, but other than that, it's been a while since I worked with him. Last week was nice.

And this week is slow. Them's the breaks. Gonna try to use this free time wisely... finish up on some personal projects and maybe even start something new. We'll see how that goes.