A funny thing happened in California on Saturday. My friend, Chuck Sampedro, and I went surfing at Moss Landing. We’re out waiting for a set — when, all of a sudden, Chuck sees something… Something ‘SPARKLING’. He says. Apparently, under a coconut tree. I told him to stop the tom-foolery — we’re not out here looking for ‘glimmering treasures’ — we’re out here to surf this mess around. So we catch a wave and I’ll be DAMNED if he doesn’t start in on it again. So I say — ‘if it’s so ALL-FIRED important — then go look — and stop burbeling on about it…’ So he approaches this tree like some kind of DOG on a scent trail — going left and then veering uncontrollably right and back again. All uncontrollably. Anyhoo. He finally stops at this coconut and turns it over. Except this coconut — has a three inch cork stopper in the back of it. So we look at each other, slowly, and then back at the coconut. With great trepidation — Chuck pulls the plug — guess what falls out? Apparently a prototype of the new iPad 5.0. We thought that maybe the Tradewinds washed it ashore from China or something. We were scared to touch it with anything other than a white glove — sort of like the ‘Monolith’ in Kubrick’s ‘Space Odyssey’ — but it was so beautiful! And you’ll notice how small it is. The transparent skin allows you to see the ‘guts’ of this iPad just like a 430 Modena. The reduction of the internal processors and ephemera to nanoparticles is nothing less than stunning. The one thing that didn’t seem as stellar was the fact that Apple has chosen to move from a colour screen back to a 1990 black+white version. Some thought the b+w screen might be attributable to cost cutting — a way of shoring up the costs associated with the iPhone 4.0 losses due to the reception issue. Anyway… We were nervous about having such a cool device and its effect on the world if it got into the wrong hands — so we decided that it was best to just place it back in the hollowed-out coconut and throw the coconut back out to sea.
And you though California was just about taking Yoga classes. Shame on you… You, you… Philistine!
Yesterday was madness — so I missed the websites anniversary post. However, I’m not sure that there is a better post than this one to cross the anniversary dateline with. Prior to: If you guessed that Jeff (in my previous post) was Rusty Crowe — you lose.
I received a random email a couple of months ago. It was all in lower case, including the signature, which was just signed ‘jeff bingaman’. It asked if it were possible to purchase a copy of my DVD, chasing KEINO. I thought — this is strange and out of the blue… plus, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to sell a copy, given that it is intellectual property. Digital intellectual property, no less. To someone I didn’t know. So I asked how he knew about the documentary and if he was a runner? In the return email, he told me he was a jogger and that one of his neighbors had sent an email to the neighborhood about my film. At the time, I was changing the musical score – so I told jeff that I would contact him when I had completed that process. Fast forward a week. My webmaster called and said that my website had a hit from Washington. Fast forward three days: I was sitting around that weekend working and decided to play Google Detective. I typed in ‘Bingaman+Washington’. The first top line hit was ‘US Senator Jeff Bingaman’. By Monday I had finished changing out the score and sent jeff an email saying if he wanted a copy — I would be happy to sell him one. In closing my email — I asked if I had been omitting a prefix before his name? I had an email back later that day saying he would like to buy a copy and there was no prefix — he said — I’m just ‘jeff’. lower case. again.
I told him that if after he screened my film — he felt like he had overpaid — I would cheerfully refund. I received a check later that week and in the upper right corner of the letterhead was: Senator Jeff Bingaman…
I received the email (above) a few weeks ago. It is hugely humbling. No other way to put it. I don’t know how many filmmakers make a first film — that is sent to the President of the United States by someone of Jeff Bingaman’s esteem. An incredible honor. Full stop.
I would like to thank Senator Bingaman again. I said in my email back to him — I see less and less sense of curiosity in the world today. Everyone is too caught up in their own pernicious world. And that is sad — without a sense of curiosity — there are fewer and fewer beneficiaries, ultimately. A spiral downward. Thanks Senator Bingaman, for having the curiosity to take a look at my film.
What more can you say about this Cobble stuff? It’s killer in execution? They’re not literal representations of a photo taken… he takes liberties with compositional elements. Historically, paintings, drawings use a form of triangulation to keep the viewers’ eye within the composition. This piece is a lot more sophisticated in the devices it employs to keep the eye in composition than all of that 15th century historical gobbeldy-goop.
Even when they *finally* release footage, its hot air. It tells us absolutely nothing about the camera. Notice its locked down, I wonder if they’re having skew problems? Red might be a good company, but they constantly over-promise and under-deliver. The opposite of what you should want from a company that you need to trust. Oh, and they constantly dribble out bits of news, or just the claim that there is news, or BS like “Everything just changed again, more news later!” that really never tells you anything, but sure makes the fanboys scream like girls at a beatles concert in the 1960s! Seriously. In fact, every time I’m suckered into following a link to the red user forums for some of this “news” I get the increasing impression that Jim Jannard has the personality of a 14 year old girl who can’t decide which boy she likes best– every day, its a different one. I fell for the promise of a company that was going to really change the game… but I don’t believe anything they say anymore. I bet the percentage of RED fans who are eagerly awaiting Scarlet who are really prepared to edit a 3K Raw workflow is less than 10%.
Not that there aren’t those who are serious and ready to do so, just that the hype and popularity of these cameras far exceeds the reality of the market.
It reminds me of all the boys who were excited about cars they could never afford and who would relentlessly debate them, even though they’d never own one– and if they did, it would be when they were in their 50s and the car was a collectible over 30 years old and completely unpractical by the time they get one.
A friend of mine sent me this quote re: Red Cameras, and I’m not sure that shes wrong. Tons of hype. The last few films I’d seen shot with Red looked really shitty. I was telling someone that — and they went into well that must have been a conscious decision for the film’s ‘look’. I told them ‘That’s what I would have said, too.’ Nice try. But I would have cleared my throat in the English tradition to let you know that you were about to be beset in bullshit.
In the sacred words of Sir Mick Jagger: ‘You can not always get what you want… but if you try sometime — you just might find, you get… well — you get some helicopter shots…’: I shot this footage from my friend Greg and Erin’s helicopter in late June. I stopped and spent a few days with them in southern Utah. Gregor is a dangerous bastard and most certainly not to be trusted. Erin, on the other hand, is an accomplished heli-pilot. Female gene, I reckon.
Just received news that my documentary, chasing KEINO, has been selected by the International Black Film Festival Nashville. A great honor. Will get to see all of my music friends in the Nashville area. Yes, it’s early. Yes, it’s four-fourty AM Central Time. Yes, we’re working whilst you sleep. I have some ‘top of the pops’ info on chasing KEINO that I’ve been sitting on that I will post when I have time. Also some news on my script that is in development. We finished the first draft and finished revision number one. This will be sent out in the same iterative process as the first draft. This is how, I’m told, the process works. Until all remaining air bubbles have been forced out. As John Lydon once sang: ‘The ladder is long…’. No shit.
As we approach the anniversary date for vaughan+STUDIO‘s inaugural film website and BLOGS, we’d like to thank everyone that has visited. We have had some 4,700 hits either through my film, chasing KEINO, or the arts and we haven’t even crossed the one year anniversary. We have, likewise, had hits from most all European countries as well as the Russian Federation, Singapore, Australia, India and Jah, man — Jamaica. Thanks, amigos!
Given that we’re about to cross that dateline on 27 August – it seems like it might be fun to play ‘Who is it?’ and ‘What the HELL is it?’
CATEGORY 1: Who IS it?
a. Jeff Bridges?
b. Jerry ‘Jeff’ Walker
c. Jeff Zucker
d. Jeffrey Katenzeberg
e. Russell Crowe (disguised as Jeff)
f. Jeff (disguised as Russell Crowe)
CATEGORY 2: What the HELL is it? (More later.)
I’ve been hard at work on new art which, hopefully, I will post tomorrow under CAT 2.