I participated in the 2012 24 Hour Film Race at the very beginning of June. It’s a crazy 24 hour film making whirl wind. From 9pm Friday night to 9pm Saturday we wrote, produced, shot, edited and submitted a 3.5 minute short film. We were up against teams from all over the world. This was not my first film race so I was well prepared for the trials involved with getting all of the elements in place and pushing pushing pushing pushing until it was done.
I was very pleased with the way the film turned out. We went for a 50′s b-movie type script and I got to be the cinematographer. It was a challenge to emulate the look and feel of the 50′s films with modern camera equipment. I ended up shooting in black and white on the camera instead of adjusting it in post. I used the lowest contrast I could set on my camera to match the film stock available in the 50′s and I avoided hand holding the camera as much as possible since the camera’s in the 50′s weighed hundreds of pounds and were not very mobile. As a final touch I put a diffusion filter on my lens to give the film a dreamy look.
In the end all of the hard work paid off. The film won “Best Cinematography” for the Minneapolis region. I was super proud of wining the award, it was incredibly validating to have my work judged to be the best in the competition by local professionals. It is encouraging and makes me want to get out and make films more than ever.
After the film race I got married. Best thing ever! The day was amazing (what I remember of it) and everything went off without a hitch. Except for the one that is supposed to happen. The photobooth that I made for the wedding was a smashing success too. You can check out some of the pictures from the booth over on Facebook. Hopefully soon I can get some more use out of it.
We had an awesome honeymoon up on the north shore of Lake Superior. We got some great pictures which you can also find on our Facebook page. And we came back the morning after the region received 9-10 inches of rain in one night and there was massive flooding. It made getting back home a little bit of a challenge. We stopped at Gooseberry Falls State park and got a first hand look at how high the water was running.
We were lucky to make it back to the Twin Cities that day with all the road closures and detours.
After we got back we got the chance to shoot a wedding video for another happy couple. It was a good experience full of challenges both for shooting a wedding using DSLR cameras and for my first experience editing with Final Cut Pro X. It turned out really well and the couple were extremely happy with the video.
And just a few weekends ago I spent a day with a local screenwriter who was selected for a national IFP screenwriter/film maker development conference in NYC. She needed a “Look Book” which is a graphical collection of colors, images etc that are or could be part of the film or build the theme or mes en sein (sp?) of the script. So we spent the morning and part of the afternoon driving all over south eastern Minnesota taking pictures of houses, churches, main streets, a cafe and some chickens. It was a fun experience and something that I might do in the future for a photography project of for a film that I am working on.
The last little bit of update information is that I have put in my notice at my current employer so that I can pursue this sort of stuff full time. It is simultaneously exciting and scary as hell. Lots of big challenges ahead both creatively and personally as I try to find fulfilling things to do and to hopefully find myself doing something that I love and that brings in some income.
That is all for now, but there will be many and more frequent updates to come after this coming Friday when I enter the self-(un)employed life of an artist.