Tag Archives: Painting

A Great Way to Save Time and Energy!

27 Jan

As you go about your art, your venture, your enterprise, it’s best to assess people in one of two ways:

Believers or Boosters

Believers see your vision early and have faith in you. Boosters contribute to your success as it builds.

Neither is better than the other. In fact, both will contribute greatly to your work! 

What’s crucial is your ability to identify one from the other early in your process.

A booster will not help you before you have some form of success. And if you continually reach out to boosters, before you have something meaty for them, you will be wasting your time and energy. Believers, on the other hand, will jump on board before you even start cooking, or very soon thereafter.

This principle has proven true as I develop Heart of Indiana, my next feature film. Once I have some awesome actors attached and financing in place, I’ll reach out to boosters. But, before then, I’m going to spend my time and energy on believers.

More importantly, making this distinction and reaching out accordingly saves you from excess emotional fatigue. Waiting around, hoping boosters will return your email, your phone call, is immensely difficult and taxing on one’s heart. It zaps our passion and creativity.

Be wise: determine whether one is a believer or a booster early in your journey. Don’t be asking boosters to boost you when there isn’t much to boost!

Blessings and Godspeed!!!!

Economy of Asking

23 May

As I continue to produce my feature film, I’ve been asking for advice, help, and insight from many people, mostly via email and Facebook.

It’s generally easy to ask for help on the internet – it’s impersonal and unobtrusive. This makes me wonder: has the “economy of asking” changed due to the internet? In other words, because it’s easier to ask online, are more people asking? And if more people are asking, are more people living audaciously?

On the flip side, during the telephone days and face-to-face days before that, was there less audacity? More audacity? Because it takes more courage to make an ask over the phone or in person, were fewer people boldly going forth?

Not sure if the devalued economy of asking is a good thing or not. Maybe the higher need for courage to ask over the phone or in person weeded out hacks and wannabes.

What do you think?

A Hidden Blessing Not so Hidden Anymore!

1 May

The most excruciating part of low-budget, independent filmmaking is asking for help.

It takes a lot more people to make a film than almost any other art form. I often fantasize about being a lone poet or painter because of this harsh reality.

However, as I embark on my current feature film project, I am beginning to discover a hidden blessing within the taxing need for help. I have come to realize that asking for help often leads to receiving help, and receiving help comes with the blessing of knowing people care about you and your art.

Even if I don’t “make it” as a filmmaker, I will know one thing for certain: there are a lot of people out there who care about me, something I may never have known as a lone artist…

Ang Lee Cooking and Cleaning

4 Apr

My good friend, Jeffrey Travis, recently shared an article with me with the belief that I would find it encouraging: I did…very much!

Let me preface the article by saying that this year’s Academy Award winning director, Ang Lee, was in a long, long funk and seriously put in his dues.

From age 30 to 36, he’s living in an apartment in White Plains, NY trying to get something — anything — going, while his wife Jane supports the family of four (they also had two young children) on her modest salary as a microbiologist. He spends every day at home, working on scripts, raising the kids, doing the cooking. That’s a six-year span — six years! — filled with dashed hopes and

Enjoy the article, “Ang Lee and the Uncertainty of Success,” by Jeff J. Lin.

Hurry Up and Wait…

15 Mar

A fellow filmmaker recently asked me how I was doing and when I mentioned that some things are “in the works,” he responded, “Yeah, well….  Hurry up and wait, huh?”

That phrase, “hurry up and wait,” has been haunting me all week.  It gets to the core of what I loathe about filmmaking: our immense dependency on others.  Even the smallest film projects rely on the commitment of others.  Like kids on a playground before a game of kickball, countless filmmakers in Los Angeles are waiting around hoping to be a part of a team.  It’s torture, discouraging, and demoralizing.

It really is a conundrum: while us filmmakers love to collaborate and need others to actualize our art, at the same time, we are at their mercy.  It’s in the nature of what we do.  I’ve often fantasized of being a lone pianist, photographer, painter, or poet, engaged in an art form where completion rests solely on my efforts, but I love to make films.

I’ve successfully counteracted the dependency dilemma by making short films that relied on a few people.  However, when one’s project inherently demands substantial help from others, well, it’s hurry up and wait!

But then again, I doubt Spielberg has to hurry up and wait.  Maybe that’s the key: the more of a success you are, the less you wait.

I’ll never forget the time I was in a mass of people swarming around the filmmaker, Werner Herzog.  In the midst of the chaos, a 20-something kid battled the mob and stepped up to Herzog, begging: “Please, please.  I’ll do anything you want, Mr. Herzog, if only I can have a chance to be on your set and learn.”  I didn’t hear the filmmaker’s response; I was too stupefied by the desperation before me…


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