Monday, September 30, 2019

Extra Time!

Extra Time!

I love making films. Being on the film set is amazing, so much is going on, you never know what is going to happen next. Magic happens on the set.

Over the years, I have been in a lot of student films, shorts, and feature films, so I am used to a set.  Each one there is a life of its own.  There is a vibe that you can sense being on set.  Films are different, the crew is different, the director and lead actors are all different on each set.  It is fun to be a small part of this magic.

Since I know people in the film business, I have learned how to get on larger sets.  One way to get on them is by being a background actor, or as most people know it, an extra!  When a film production needs a restaurant scene, they have to have people in there that look like they are eating and serving.  If the stars of the film are eating an empty restaurant, it looks weird and fake.  So you have to have background actors.  You do not notice them, however, you do know when they are not there.

Being that I am middle-aged, have a business type haircut, look great in a suit, and have a real look about myself, I can usually get work as a background actor.  You can not just have background actors that are under 24 and over 65 years old, the middle is important!   So right now, I can get work as a background actor.

I have been a background actor on two feature films and seven television shows.  As an independent filmmaker, I can watch the professionals work their magic and learn from them.  Even if I do not get into the final cut of the film, I still learned a lot and met some cool people.  Learning how to become a better filmmaker is a never ending process. 

If you would have told the young me that one day you would be on television and feature motion pictures, it would have been hard to believe that.  At times, I still do not believe it.  Life is cool.  Dreams can come true. 


Sunday, August 18, 2019

Make Every Year, A Productive Year

Make Every Year, A Productive Year

Each year you have a choice.  That goes for each day, each week, each hour and each minute.  The choice is to doing something with your life or not. When you get right down to it, it is all on you.

Whenever I hear a person say that someone or something is keeping them from doing what they want to do, I shake my head.  I know that they really don't want it that bad.  If they did, they would go out there and make it happen.  Living your dreams is up to you, you can not blame anything else.

But I had bad luck.  Tough.  But I was ill.  So.  No one likes me.  Grow up.  I don't have money. Join the club and go work five jobs.  I don't have the right 'insert device' to do what I want to do.  Then figure out a way to make that happen.  It's not tough to figure out what you need to do.  Most don't want to hear it, because the truth can be frightening.  People keep themselves from being successful, not things.

Whenever in the past if any of these excuses came up for me, I grit my teeth and figure it out.  I never let anything or one keep me from my successes.  And I am not afraid to fail.  Failing is great!  I've failed a lot and plan to fail a lot more in the future.  I never let the failures keep me down, I brush myself off and stand up and go at it again.  That is life.  That is life for everyone.  Live your life the way you want.  If you don't, it is on you.

This has been another great and productive year.  I workout daily.  Rock out every single day!  Make and create the art, music, and writings that I want.  Get to make films and acting all of the time.  See my family all the time.  And my friends are the best!  When I look back at last year I can only smile, and I'm looking towards the future!



Make Every Year A Productive Year

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Unlearning Everything You Learned In Life That Was Wrong

Unlearning Everything You Learned In Life That Was Wrong

Have you ever heard that once you get over the age of elementary school that you can never learn a foreign language?  You only use ten percent of your brain.  Listening to Classical music will make you smarter.  If you do not start as a child, you can never play a musical instrument.  Math is harder than Art.  If you can not spell, you are not intelligent.  Potatoes are bad for you.  Eggs are bad for you.  Potatoes are good for you.  Eggs are good for you. Margarine is better for you than butter.  After forty take a baby aspirin daily to keep from getting a stroke.  Cigarettes contain not just one but a combination of medically proven active ingredients to soothe frayed nerves. I can go on and on.

If something sounds plausible, then most of us say, yeah that could work.  It makes sense that you can not learn a foreign language after twelve years old.  You took Spanish or French in middle school for years and never learned a foreign language, so it only makes sense that we can not learn to speak a foreign language after a certain point in time. 

In reality, there are millions of people over the history of time that leave their homelands for other areas of the world and they have learned other languages.  Is it hard? Yes.  Impossible.  No.  If you have the drive, the motivation, the tenacity, you will learn a foreign language or anything else. This goes with music, riding a bike, skateboarding, anything that you want to learn you can if you work at it.

One advice that I would give others is to not worry about perfection.  You are going to make tons of mistakes first playing an instrument, learn a foreign language, swing dancing.  Those mistakes you learn from.  I love it when I fail as an actor, so I can learn from the experience.  It makes me a better actor to watch myself on the big screen to see what did not work.

So forget all of the things you thought were true, if you want it bad enough, you will find a way to make it happen. Humans are capable of doing amazing things.  You are human, so can you!  If another human did something, you can also! 

Also use your common sense, if it does not sound correct, check it out.


Sunday, June 30, 2019

Watching Television Instead Of Streaming In 2019

Watching Television Instead Of Streaming In 2019

The last three weeks I watched television instead of streaming video content.  Like everyone else today, I mainly watch shows and movies streaming online.  It was a different experience watching television over using the computer and streaming devices.  This was a cool challenge to try in 2019!  Would I be able to survive watching television without the streaming video content?   

When I was a kid, television was such a large part of my life.  It was a large part of everyone's' lives back then.  There wasn't anyone I knew as a kid in the 80's and 90's that didn't watch television.  Hours of television, even up to twelve hours or more a day!  Yeah, I did that during the summer when I was off from school.  Turn the television on when I got up, went out to play, then came back in and watched it until I fell asleep. 

We didn't think watching television was a waste of time back then.  Many said that television was destroying our brains.  It didn't.  We all watched a ton of television and we were fine.  Television didn't make us any smarter or dumber.  It also didn't take over our lives.  Watching television was entrainment, for the most part, there was some content that was educational and at times I did learn from watching it, however, for the most part watching television was to entertain us. 

If you would've told me that television would disappear from my life as a kid, I would have not believed you.  What would replace television?  Ones and zeros on computers.  Then the internet came into our lives.  The game changed for us all.  Boy did it ever!

We are so used to now picking the shows and movies we want to watch and when.  The idea today running home to watch a television show on a certain day and time is so foreign to us now.  Imagine if this was still the way we watch our entertainment.  No more watching complete series in two days!

It was a bit refreshing to watch whatever was on television.   I just watched what was on television, didn't have to think about my choices, since there weren't any to have.  If the movie or show was half over, I had to just join in where it was at.  It was fun to just roll the dice and watch what was on the television.  No searching for a show I want to stream, I just watched what was on the television.

I watched movies that I wouldn't watch on my own.  Got to watch a few movies from back in the day that I haven't seen in a while.  After three weeks of watching movies and shows on television, I kind of looked forward to watching television again.  Watching what was on by flipping a few channels took up less time than searching for a film on my streaming services.   Sometimes fewer choices equal more time.  I did miss picking what I wanted to watch from time to time.  However, this was a cool experiment.  I would recommend trying this if you still have a television.  It would simplify your life, and perhaps you would watch less content and go outside to play.


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