So we shot the first part of Go ahead It's Okay for Apogee last week. We did all the performance footage and are saving the "cinema" shots for this week. Still though, even in these simple lighting setups we got some lovely footage, and the extras were a blast to work with. It was the fun shoot. Now onto the craft-n-detail! Check out these production stills by Green La Fleur.
Annie and I shot some video at In Flux this Friday. In Flux is an outdoor gallery produced in conjunction with Lower Polk Art Walk.
We saw our friend Jean Jeanie there who was prototyping the mobile story booth with Aaron Bray.
Welcome! This structure is a temporary, autonomous zone, aka TAZ. It is a prototype of a mobile story booth. With it, we hope to investigate the less tangible elements and document the many storied experiences of San Francisco.
I went to Cambodia and Indonesia in September, and brought along my trusty old FM2. I had forgotten how nice it can be to have a light camera with a single prime lens, and not be staring at a LCD all day. Plus I've always had a secret desire to be a travel photographer, and heading out into the jungle with my little light-tight box is exciting.
We went temple-perusing in Cambodia where we stayed up in the Northwest, first in Siem Reap near Angkor Wat, then in Battambang, up the river. I shot a mix of black and white, color reversal, and slide film.
It's an amazing place. These enormous edifices rise up out of the jungle, and in some cases the jungle has grown back in over the temple grounds.
I stayed in town some days as well, to get some cafe time in with a book and do some street photography.
Some of the friendliest people I've ever met, and of course great food. I love the tradition in that part of the world of having a spicy soup in the morning instead of a big plate of waffles or eggs.
Our time in Indonesia ended up being much more Heart of Darkness. We were staying in a little village on the island Seram in the far east of the country, near the Spice Islands, west of Papua. The village was built in this little cove, and it spilled out onto the water with stilt houses going a couple blocks deep into the sea.
The majority of the island was highland rainforest, the center of it being protected national park. Incredibly lush, fog-hugged rainforest. Full of birds, including the endemic Moluccan Cockatoo, a beautiful, large, white parrot. I didn't bring a telephoto lens with me, so no bird pictures...
In Way Down East to achieve her performance Lillian Gish lay on a iceflow for so many hours that she suffered permanent nerve damage in her hand. It is an historic film climax and without Lillian's dedication to her director and her role is one of the moments that, arguably, created naturalist and methodical acting for the modern acting era. As a director/actor her performance in Way Down East reflects the urgency and devotion of will it takes to become a role and to articulate a truly personal performance. For my actors, I expect some skin in the game, and your audience demands it.
Here's a new piece of street art in SOMA on 12th betwixt Folsom and South Van Ness/Howard. I like it. Not sure if the piece is in reference to the Bear culture that prevails in the SOMA area, but beyond all that, it's a nice piece. This bear sits comfortably, cross-legged and civilized atop a death skull, and just to expand upon the visual metaphor; the death skull sits comfortably atop a flying death skeleton. Why not, Bear & Skull? Welcome to the neighborhood.
UPDATE: It seems this is a piece by Ryan Travis Christian (RTC).
So along with our other shooting stages we've designated one room just for interviews and headshots. The room has perfect depth for bust shots with backgrounds. We find that most clients need either white, for infinity white, or green, greenscreen, backdrops.
We hosted an exciting shoot the other day with the Black Magic Cinema camera. I'd never seen it in action. It looked great and the space proved perfect for complex lighting setups. It was just a simple bust shot: two camera coverage; one bust and one close-up, but with two Kinos and two Divas to light the screen and subject it looked great. Then we used another Diva, dimmed low, for the hairlight. Here's a quick camera phone production still. Going to post more soon when post-production's complete and I can talk more about the product.
Andy Warhol Screen Test with Lou Reed. Shot on 16mm with a Bolex. Shot at 24 frames per second and then screened at 16 frames per second for slight slow motion.
On Sunday, 2/17/2013, me and Green went to the Hemlock to catch Apogee Sound Club.
Before I go on, read their manifesto. Yes, they have a manifesto: unpretentious and sincere - rock-n-roll. In it they hand over the term "punk" to the dilettantes, opting instead for "Underground Sonic Energy."
Underground Sonic Energy is an accurate description of what happens when Apogee Sound Club are on stage. I'd never dare to pigeon hole them by comparison but witnessing their guitar-base-and-drums three-piece tightness; with its smart geomotries, steely crisp riffs, relentlessly muscular bass lines, and shouted-out truth lyrics one can't help but think a little of the Minute Men.
Having drawn that simple and singular comparison I must say though that the Underground Sonic Energy they proport is very much their own. They are, as educated proponents of the underground, of course informed by the traditions and progenitors of its past, but the voice that is Apogee Sound Club is a unique and singular force to be recokoned with.
After their set Green and I got a chance to talk with guitarist/vocalist Wade Driver. Loose and enilghtened by drink and whatnot we rattled off core comparisons like "Wire and a touch of Big Black," explaining that its feeling brought us back to the early 90s. Driver, very cool and friendly, acklowledged (and I'm paraphrasing here) "Yeah, there's some of that in there," but then added, "but for me though growing up that was all just punk. Now they have all these names like indie and whatever...like if you play it with a little feedback they call it 'No Wave.' For me that's just how I played punk."
I wasn't planning on shooting anything that night but once they started playing I couldn't resist at least grabbing some of the performance with my camera phone. Because words fail to convey, check out the Underground Sonic Energy that is Apogee Sound Club below. Go and see their shows! And grab a copy of their lyrics off the merch table if, as Driver put it sweat-soaked between songs, "...if you care about what we're talking about up here." Wade, my man, we do care about what your talking about up there, and we want and need more.
So I scored the first 2012 Presidential debates with a manipulated blend of Whitehouse's Great white Death album, some Atals Sound and Sex Pistols, and this sound composition I designed a long time ago called Strom Thurmond Put His Arm Around Me.
So me and Green have been preparing for the upcoming Last Wave short The Perfect Boxer. Green underwent a calisthenic bout of rehearsal to refine his character The Coach or Joe "The Corpsemaker" Malone. Here he practices the coach's maniacal id-poem with himself.
The bare blue bulb in Secret Studios' rehearsal space and my high iso mate and spawn something like night vision. Cables coiled round the tight space, Annie Girl wails against the static-hum of line noise. For some reason, in the muggy, trapped-in air, I thought out Wallace Stevens's the Snowman from start to conclusion and realized...Annie should be barefoot.