The first week of the Animation for Film: Create Eye-Catching Title Sequences class I’m taking is in the books. This week, we brainstormed our concept and then put together some rough sketches showcasing the movement that would be taking place. Because I don’t have a film that needs titles at the moment, I thought I’d get practice in by creating an intro clip featuring my own logo that I can use at the beginning of other videos that I produce.
Yo! I just came across this sweet little online class via Skillshare and had to pass it along. Fabian Molina is teaching Animation For Film: Create Eye-Catching Title Sequences, which launches this coming Monday. In the class you actually create your own project. Being that I’m always trying to step my game up, I signed up immediately. It’s just $20, but if you use this link to sign up, you get $10 off (Full disclosure: I also get $10 credit for another class later on).
Check-a, check-a, check it out.
This year marks the 20th Anniversary of THE SANDLOT, which I’ve seen countless times because IT’S ONE OF THE GREATEST MOVIES EVER!
P.S. Go Giants.
The wind is back today, though it’s died down for the moment. I’m hoping to take my writing work outside today. Like with a pad and pen. “Old school.” I could use a break from staring at a screen all day. Plus, it helps to get me away from distractions, like checking email and social media. And I can just let the words fly instead of worrying about what page I’m on or formatting issues.
Working in the back yard gives me the opportunity to enjoy the progress I’ve been making there over the last few months. I’ve cleared out weeds, filled flower beds and potted succulents on the deck. It’s a quiet place to work, minus recess and lunch time at the nearby elementary school and the periodic tossing of a pine cone from a squirrel in an adjacent tree.
I’ve been needing more sleep as of late, which is just annoying. I’ve been crawling out of bed an hour, hour and a half after I usually do, which means by the time I slide on my slippers, I could have already gotten my workout in and perhaps even my morning pages.
The book I’m reading right now is Zadie Smith’s NW. It’s not the best thing to read before bed. Not because of the content, but because you have to really focus when you read her work. She writes choppy. One, two word sentences. And yet, her words are descriptive and honestly not ones you would find in an elementary spelling test. My eyes end up drooping after a couple of pages. Still, I recommend picking it up.
How’s everyone doing? I’m in a daze my friends. After dutifully taking care of myself for the last few weeks (exercising, getting enough sleep, eating well, relaxing in the evenings), this entire week I’ve been hitting it way too hard. I’ve been working late, eating too many Cheez-Its and slugging slowly through my workouts. That must mean it’s deadline time.
Two feature length screenplays have been in my face over the past six months or so. Just a few weeks ago I sent the latest draft of one to the gentleman to which I am writing the script for. It’s now out of my hands at the moment, which I have to admit feels pretty great. That leaves me with the second script, which I’m having a blast working on, but am just taking way too long getting through. A combination of perfectionism and procrastination. I really took my time outlining and prepping this particular project, which you would think would allow me to knock it out more quickly. I wish, but no. Just the opposite has occurred. I’m analyzing every single word I type as I go along. There’s no “letting the fingers fly,” because I’m spending too much time deciphering whether or not that last set of action lines I just laid down conveyed what I was shooting for.
I am hoping to send the draft off by end of day Friday, which is why I’m spending my evenings cuddled up to my laptop instead of my wife (WIFE, Supreme Court… I’m counting on you all to do the right thing). If I reach my goal, I’m celebrating by taking next week off. Cross your fingers for me, please!
* How sweet is the photo my wife snapped of my best friend and I after our recent race over the Golden Gate Bridge?
* Take seven minutes and watch Sam Molleur‘s short film, THE PROMISE. Such great dialogue! And props to the actors for their performances.
Last week my wife and I took three days to jump on over to Scottsdale and watch the San Francisco Giants during their Spring Training play. We’ve gone for the last nine seasons and it’s always one of the highlights of the year.
We got back on Tuesday and since that time I’ve been working nonstop trying to complete up these two screenplays that I should have had finished already. I’ve accepted that I work slowly, but when other people are waiting for drafts, the pressure is loaded up onto my shoulders and it’s difficult to relax.
After working most of the weekend, minus a little break for a birthday party and a college basketball game, I’m going to work until noon today and then take the rest of the day off to work in the yard and enjoy the beautiful weather.
I’ll leave you with this fun little video my wife put together as a recap of our Spring Training trip. You can check out the 300+ photos we took in just 110 seconds.
There have been a number of highlights over the past two weeks, though it’s been difficult at times as well. My grandfather passed away at the age of 91. Although it wasn’t a surprise, it was still shocking and tough to digest. He’s had gray hair since I’ve been alive, and yet not once did I ever consider him old. He was the epitome of someone who lived life to the fullest.
+ Celebrated Grandpa’s life with a service and a reception. I got to spend time with family.
+ I was able to learn a lot about my Grandpa’s life when I put together a photo slideshow for his service.
+ We watched the Oscars, which I found somewhat boring and drawn out. I was happy with the winners though and love Jennifer Lawrence even more.
+ I met with my women’s writing group. My friend Julia came along this time. I always leave there feeling motivated.
+ I’ve been able to work out with my best friend a handful of times over the last two weeks.
+ I filled out and submitted all that dreaded tax paperwork.
+ I got my hair cut!
+ My wife and I went and had Ike’s sandwiches for lunch one day.
+ I finished cleaning up a flower bed in the backyard and then planted succulents.
+ My wife and I had breakfast with our friend Tiffany in Pacifica one morning.
+ My best friend and I spent one beautiful weekday afternoon working out on the back deck in the sun.
+ I finished reading all of the Oscar-nominated screenplays before the big show.
+ My wife, best friend and I had drinks at an outdoor fire pit one evening.
+ The Foreign Exchange released their latest project, THE REWORKS. Dude!
+ I’m feeling really good about the writing I’ve done as of late.
+ My kitty-cat turns nine today!
Have a great weekend! Read more →
Sound the bells! Crack open a beer! The weekend has arrived!
Or at least it will be here in about seven hours when I turn off the computer at the end of the work day. I want to dance when I think about the next three days. I’m going to catch up on sleep, go out to breakfast, skateboard, enjoy the beautiful weather in the Bay, and get some work done in the yard. Also, I’ll probably be getting dragged to see the new DIE HARD (that’s all part of being a supportive spouse).
This past week:
+ Celebrated V-day yesterday by going to dinner and the movies. We caught all of the live action Oscar-nominated shorts. The program included the animated ones as well, but we couldn’t stay up that late. That’s what happens when you’re over 30.
+ Fit in two workouts with my best friend this week.
+ Had a great talk on the phone with my sister.
+ Read Quentin Tarantino’s DJANGO UNCHAINED screenplay.
+ Met with the director of my next short film, BREAKFAST AT GERARDO’S.
+ Cracked open a super nice bottle of wine kindly donated by my parents.
+ Balanced my freelance writing with my script work. Taking it one day / hour / minute at a time!
Have a great weekend!
I know I’ve been MIA in the online world as of late, and I apologize. I’ve had my hands full with projects and just the normal ups and downs of life. I’m very conscious about where I spend my time nowadays; doing my best to stay away from things that aren’t pushing me forward or adding positivity to my life.
Slowly, and yet steadily, I’m making progress on the two feature scripts I’m writing, as well as on the production of my next short film, BREAKFAST AT GERARDO’S. I’m in the middle of a rewrite of one of the scripts, and writing the first draft of the other. I’m currently raising funds for the short film, which is slated for production this Spring.
Over the past month, I’ve been relentlessly hitting up the theater to see the Oscar-nominated films, and powering up the iPad to read the nominated scripts. I’ve caught all of the Best Picture movies (I’m rooting for ARGO, or maybe LINCOLN. I also wouldn’t be upset if SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK took it) and just have David Magee’s LIFE OF PI and Mark Boal’s ZERO DARK THIRTY screenplays remaining on my reading list.
I’ll be back soon with updates. Thank you for taking the time to keep up with me and my work. I expect to have some exciting things to share with you this year! Read more →
Dude. It’s already hump day. And it’s the last hump day of January, which means that the first month of 2013 is almost behind us. I guess most would be excited that they’re halfway through the week. Closer to the weekend. Closer to the Super Bowl if you’re a 49er, or God-forbid, a Ravens fan. But for me, it’s a little kick in the pants. I’ve been consistent with my work this month and for that I’m proud. I’ve reeled back my freelance load so that it’s just a little blip in my work day, which allows me to spend most of my time on the two screenwriting projects currently on my plate.
But I’d be lying if the coming of the new month doesn’t make me a little anxious. It’s a punch to the gut reminder that I need to produce. Get things done. Tear ahead and cross the motherfreaking finish line instead of happily trotting at a turtle’s place.
I think about the writing monster that is Mark Duplass and the volume of work that he does. That guy pumps out scripts like no other. It’s not uncommon for writers to finish multiple scripts per year, but Mark knocked one out on a single plane flight across the United States.
Mark’s no doubt talented, but I think his impressive work volume has to partly do with the previous years of work he put in. It now must flow for him. Back when I was playing hoop, because of the hours of shooting work I had chalked up, I got to a point where I could freely make my way “around the world,” hitting every shot at various locations on the court.
Each script poses a different challenge, but the practice that Mark has put in makes him better prepared and skilled to handle the challenge. Because of the hours of shooting drills I put in, I was better able to make jumpers in circumstances other than when I was alone and playing “around the world.” Perhaps with defense on me, or if I was off-balance.
The work put in. The practice. The discipline. It all leads to becoming not only better skilled, but more confident. And that confidence translates to being able to pull the trigger on a difficult jump shot. It allows you to write freely without concern of whether what your fingers are tapping onto your laptop keys is any good.
It’ll give you the courage to finish a feature screenplay. Or hopefully in my case, two!