Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Getting Fancy with an Artist Statement

Before I came to the University of Alabama, I was stuck with a tiny old sony handycam that my dad bought on a whim at an electronics store that probably isn't even around now. It had a super thick lcd screen no bigger than a matchbox. It shot to miniDV tapes. It took me a good two or three months to just figure out how to get footage off them. I had seen plenty of movies, but knew that they were made with big budgets, huge crews, and lights that were maybe a little brighter than the sun. I wanted to "make movies", but had to find ways to recreate the things I'd seen with what I had.

Which is what got me started in always wanting to try new things with video. I see having virtually no formal training until college as an absolute blessing. If higher end cameras, lights, and sound equipment were thrown at me from the beginning, I probably would have just gotten lazy and followed the rules to a tee. Being forced to come up with creative solutions for low budget video problems has become invaluable to me now that I'm getting a taste of what the professional world is like. Enough prologue, though. No one ever reads that part of the book anyway.

What is it exactly that I aim to do with video? I'll try and keep it short.

I'm all about story. To me, with rare exception, a great story can hold up someone's work incredibly well. I'm not saying that gives you the excuse to be lazy with everything else around it. Not at all. I don't know if this saying is mine or not, but I think that if you have enough creative thought, you can make a Mona Lisa with a box of crayons if it's all you have. Just be sure to go all the way and use all the colors.

My videos, thus far, have been about telling a story in a minimalist style adopted from these ideals that have been embedded in my brain. I like the low budget look with no explosions, call me crazy. I strive to make everything look real and spontaneous. I try to give the majority of my videos this look, but I refuse for it to look cheap. Having a viewer just think I'm lazy is not what I'm going for at all. I just want it to tell a story visually in a way that someone may not be used to, but appreciate as much as they would if it was big budget (and possibly had explosions).

I will be posting my demo reel tomorrow.


  1. Wow. That, personally, is amazing. I love the idea of going above and beyond the conventional rules of film-making. And I think you are completely successful in making everything look high-quality and real/spontaneous looking. I absolutely respect you as a film(?)-maker and all of your comments on the process: Keep it up!