Tag Archives: fun

Joanna Music Video’s

So after my last blog (Music Video’s I Love Vol 2)  I got some feedback from one of the artists asking why there wasn’t any words about her video so this blog is to make amends (And stop her moaning about it) 😉

Joanna’s music videos are crazy. Like completely crazy and I love them. Having seen some of her older work that’s  pretty normal on the sanity scale (but also very good, especially wild world) this makes the latest ones even more nuts.

I’ve taken part in plenty of 48 hour film challenges and this is what her videos remind me off. There’s skill there, but its the resourcefulness and creativity  that really excites me. Most of the video’s look there there’s no budget there at all, or at least low-budget, and that just seems to encourage more and more funnier solutions to certain parts of the different music video’s.

While isn’t it exciting is my favourite because off its pure energy and execution of the idea the rightful heir video features my favourite moment with someone being thrown down the stairs. With no budget for stunts they use a clever cut away instead and it just lands perfectly for me. My sort of humour, and the sort of thing that always got a great laugh at these 48 hour film challenges. Film making at its most fun.

Other video’s like Truckin’ everyday make ‘full’ use of green screen and captures her craziness perfectly. Reminds me of a Lexx episode I once saw and makes me wonder whether she’s ever seen the ridiculously awesome Canadian German Sci-Fi. Alongside that is another video that looks like it was made while setting up the Trucking video which again as a film maker I can’t help but love little things like that. I wonder whether it was planned or spontaneous it’s that well done.

There’s just a certain energy level and weirdness that’s always there that just works. I feel it has to be very genuine as could easily be cringeworthy or to insane, but isn’t at all. It’s just fun, every single time. She’s clearly someone who loves the creative process and backs up my theory that Music Video’s can be more than just promoting the song. While that will always be their main purpose there’s definitely room to tell a great story or a fun sketch within them and watching these doubles my belief in that.

So I hope this blog makes up the last for her and that she continues to make such incredibly fun music videos that always make me laugh and smile and somehow not turn away from the screen cringing. Don’t know how she does it, but just works, and would love to one day work with her and see the craziness unfold live. Would be a lot of fun.

Here’s some more examples of her work below and plenty more can be found on YouTube and as she doesn’t seem to promote her own work will mention that her latest album House of Bullies is also out.

 

Stephen

Music Video’s I Love Vol 2

So as I enjoyed writing and sharing the first blog about Music Video’s from Asia I loved I thought I’d do a follow-up.

I can’t say enough good things about the Indie scene over there. I’ve gotten more into music in a big way of late and it largely due to hearing what’s been coming out of Taiwan. I’ve discovered plenty more English and American bands as well recently, but Taiwan Indie seem to have a direct link to my heart at the moment.

So here’s a bunch more Asia MV’s that I love and from bands I hope to maybe work with in the future.

DVD Collection

Back in 2000 I got my first DVD player. With it I got my first DVD, a special edition of Raging Bull (Love that movie). I had loads of VHS at the time, but I was instantly hooked on DVD’s. The quality, the way they worked, the extra features. They where amazing. Not to long after I got a job at Blockbusters and had access to even more films. Awesome.

So while at Blockbusters I started to collect DVD’s. I aimed to get around 100 a year which I could afford at the time as that’s literally all my wages went on (Along with figures and comics). I had 10 free rental’s a week as well so along with buying the films and having sky at home I watched a lot of films back in those day.

Believe my final Blockbuster rental account was about 2200 films in the first shop I worked in and about 500 in each of the other two shops I ended up managing. Lots of free rentals. And that’s not including borrowing colleagues accounts when I’d used all ten of my free rentals by Wednesday which happened a lot. But that’s a different blog for the future.

So back to the collection.

Fast forward half my life time and 16 years after starting at Blockbusters I had just shy of 2500 films. Easily exceeded my 100 a year, especially when I became a manager. Could have been a lot more too but at different times I traded DVD for tapes so I could watch more films and have things like DS9 marathons by buying up all the tapes for the cost of trading a few DVD’s. Now neither tend to be worth anything.

I couldn’t leave the house without buying a DVD. Just wanted more and more. My Dad built  special shelving in my room for them. I had to stack them double deep. These shelves held nearly 2000 like that but it wasn’t enough. So stacked them on other shelves. Then on the floor at the side of these ones. Was just crazy. By the time I moved out 80% of my boxes where boxes containing DVD’s. Then there was the process of buying some bookcases to fit them all. Again stacked double deep. Ended up getting rid of about 500 just to make them fit.

By this time however I wasn’t really watching them anymore. Was easier to use Netflix than to get to a DVD despite having them all listed on an app on my phone. This is when my mindset started changing about them.

When I moved back home I had the same amount of DVD’s. I had stopped buying them. Just didn’t have the room and there where plenty that I hadn’t watched. So my new priority became trying to watch the ones i’d hadn’t seen. I’m not sure how many movies I’ve seen. My IMDB tells me I’ve rated just under 4000 but I know I haven’t gone back and rated loads that I’ve seen in the past, or a lot of world cinema. If I had to guess I’d say it probably close to 6000. So it was time to watch ones I owned but hadn’t watched.

But now I’m uncertain about my collection. I don’t know how much I want it anymore. I’ve gotten rid of another 500 maybe. Maybe more. I’ve lost the appeal of collecting films. Somehow other things have gotten in the way. I used to love buying a new DVD. I’d watch the film, then I’d watch all the extras, then I’d listen to the audio commentary. I can’t tell you the last time I watched all the extra’s or listened to the commentary but I know it’s years. To be honest, that saddens me.

The collection used to be something that defined me. I was the guy with the massive DVD collection and huge film knowledge. But I don’t need that collection to be knowledgable of film, and I don’t feel like I use that collection correctly anyway if I don’t get the most out of the DVD’s.

So what’s this blog really about?

I’m thinking I’m going to trade most of the collection I have left. It’s not so much that I need the room anymore, I just don’t use it. I started buying films recently that I wanted to watch and then trading them back and that worked just as well as rental ever did with second-hand films being so cheap. I feel like if I buy a movie to watch it, rather than just to own it, that I will appreciate the extra’s more and that will become part of my film education again. (Does that make sense).

My collection has served me well, and obviously I won’t get rid off all. But I feel like over the course of the year I’ll probably get rid of 90%. I want to travel in the future and it’s not like I can take them with me and it’s not like it’s hard to buy any film I feel like watching. I started with the right intentions. I wanted to watch everything I could and I’ve really watched most of them. But now the collection doesn’t excite me anymore and doesn’t really serve a purpose.

So it’s been great while it lasted, but it time to give the films I buy more meaning now rather than just sliding it on the shelf and forgetting about them.

 

Stephen

 

First Month of Photo A Day

At the start of the year, or rather the end of last year, I decided I wanted to once again try the whole photo a day thing, except this time stick too it. I’ve tried once or twice before and it never lasts long but wanted this time to be different. Something that I’ve got better at recently, sticking to my own plans.

So a month in and I’ve managed it. Has been a lot of fun so far trying to make each day a little different from the last while swapping up what I use a bit to take the photo’s. I wanted some of the photo’s to represent my day or almost be a memory to that day looking back at it, while others are just pictures I took which I liked. Some are also just silly. (Sure that will happen more and more).

There’s one or two I would happily replace, but can’t, however for the most part I’m happy with how the first month of photo’s went.

Have enjoyed playing around with different Hipstamatic set-ups as well as using a couple of my old favourites. Find it very interesting looking at the images side by side as well. A photo diary of my day almost.

Fully believe I’ll keep this up for the whole year. I know it will start to get more difficult to keep things fresh and interesting with the pictures, but that’s part of the fun.

Below are my favourite five for January, along with another I like above as my featured image. All can be found on my Instagram page here. The information for each picture, including what was used to take it, is within the descriptions and tags of the individual photos.

Hope you like.

Stephen.

3/365

 

3-2017

4/365

4-2017

13/365

13-2017

22/365

22-2017

25/365

25-2017

 

 

Making Worlds Greatest Zombie Hunter: Part Two (Inc Series)

(First part here)

As I’ve touched upon before in a previous blog (That’s been deleted) pre-production and production didn’t really go to plan.

I advertised for the lead role on Shooting People and got a pretty positive response. Auditioned several actors via Skype and met a few local ones for meetings as well. Narrowed the list down to three people and went with the more experienced who I have to say was fantastic.

Unfortunately things didn’t work out there. After several long delays because of other project he was working on things just kind of fell apart. I won’t go into much detail but it was clear at this point that he wasn’t what I wanted and I’m sure he felt the same about me.

So that wasn’t great.

While all this was happening several different locations fell through and my co producer had to pull out due to personal reasons. Which just left me with a completed script and not much more.

I contacted another choice on my short list and he was very keen for the role. I’d known him through him working with someone else I knew a few years back and was glad I was able to give him a chance. He was the most enthusiastic and I was really looking forward to working with him. (and will work with him plenty more in the future).

So actor sorted.

Knew I was going to shoot on the iPod so that was sorted as well, but then I probably made a bad choice. I decided to shoot it at my house.

Initially we planned to shoot it in a cellar or a shed or something that we could turn into a den and the location would evolve over time along with his outfit and his outlook. Was all going to be a line of development that worked alongside each other… I really should have stuck with that. It just made sense and was something I could build on. Could start out pretty sparse and end up looking like Dr Horrible.

But I shot in my house instead.

For me personally, the house just doesn’t work.  I like some of the shots and love the framing through the stairs but I could have got better elsewhere. Just felt very amateurish which is the vibe I was going for, but I think I shouldn’t have gone full amateur. It was sloppy.

By this point I just pointed the camera really. I gave some thought to the setting but not much. Spent some time with the lead to get what I want but the shoot was rushed and I knew it. Was shoot over a few hours across two days I believe but more could have been done.

The production had gone so wrong so many times that I had moved on by that point to another idea, honestly I should have shelved it and came back to it but with all the delays I just wanted it done.

I shouldn’t have treated it like that and never would again, but I can tell watching it back that my heart wasn’t 100% into it. Forget how much less I knew back then I can go back several years before that and watch shorts and 48 hour competition films I made that had a lot more going for them. I fucked up and I know it.

For me, it was a big learning experience though. The short film I shoot before that had technical problems with the sound being awful, but I learnt a lot working with a crew, this one I learnt a lot from the pre-production standpoint. Things go wrong, that’s just always going to happen and this experience made me realise that a lot more and toughened me up.

I love a chance one day to set things right and maybe make a much improved second season but have a lot on. If I ever do find myself pining to go back to it though I will, and like I said, this time my heart would definitely be in it.

Below is the complete season. All 11 episodes. It’s probably my worse work but I still like a lot of the script and plenty of the performance. Will always regret not using a better location but I did have zero money and was shooting on an iPod so maybe I’m being a little hard on myself. But still…..

 

Stephen

 

Blogging Next Year

So for the first time I’ve managed to keep my blog going for a year. Was a little gap in the middle of the year when life got in the way but I’ve mostly updated it regularly and feel like I’m improving and expanding with it.

My question to myself is what would I like to do with it in 2017.

Am always looking to improve the quality so would like to spend a little more time on the posts which I believe I can do, and maybe look for a set amount of posts a week along with certain set days that they come out.

Have a lot of ambition for 2017 that isn’t just scriptwriting so think that the blog will end up being more than just a scriptwriting blog and would cover a lot more of my other creative endeavours, but feel it’s already going that way anyway.

Know that it’s best for a blog to really centre around one core thing but that’s just not the way my brain works.

Would like to write more about past writing and filming experiences so will look to do that. Will keep up to date with my script writing and any thoughts I have on the subject along with trying to be as transparent as possible about my script writing career.

Have plans on making plenty of music videos and short films next year so that will become a bigger part of the blog along with a little more about my photography. Alongside this I’m looking to put a lot more work into the film review channel so will write about, and promote, that more which I’m sure will also lead to a couple more bulk review blogs.

The idea of the blog was always to track my creative progress and give a little insight to who I am and that remains the main idea. I want to share anything I learn and experience in the writing and film world while also sharing stuff I love and am passionate about.

Feel like next year has to be a big one for one, although I do feel that every year. Have a few things lined up that could really make that happen and will share as much of that as possible. Recently finished (I hope) a new feature script so will be looking to do something with that later in the year and have another one ready to get out there.

Going to make things happens, one way or another. Feel more confident about my writing and where I’m at with it and have made big steps forward this year behind the camera so now need to do something with that. So have my sights set firmly forward.

So thank you to everyone who’s been reading this year. Have had far more readers than any other year, in fact probably all the previous years and blogs combined don’t come close to this year so that’s been awesome and hopefully will only get better.

Stephen.

(This my final blog of the year most likely, but will be back super early next year)

 

Music Video’s I Love

So the rest hasn’t exactly gone to plan with me writing every chance I get and working all the hours available at my job job but I’ve still found time to watch some films and plenty of Music Video’s.

The music I’m loving at the moment seems to all come from Asia along with my favourite Music Videos so I thought I’d share some here. Love all these artist and can’t say enough positive things about how incredible the music scene for me is over that way at the moment. Especially Taiwan.

Would love to direct some Music Video’s over there. Here’s hoping that happens.

Enjoy.

 

Stephen