Championship :: Film Awards

In two days, it’s the finale of the film awards season.  I don’t think I’ve seen many new films this year, not to mention I haven’t had much of a chance to see any films that have won or been nominated at various award ceremonies. Yet the Oscars are only two days away.

One of the films that I did manage to see: The Imitation Game

I loved it.  I was initially drawn to the story because being a film about WWII and that being a topic that I’m extremely interested in, it seemed like a no brainer for me.  But that aside, I thought the story was beautifully told, one that has only surfaces in the last few decades.  The acting and the filmmaking were also breathtaking and I’m interested to see how many awards it takes home.  It’s not easy to make the story about the first computer’s creation during a desperate time appealing for the masses, but I think this film has done that.

This is a tough year to be nominated for film awards.  There are a lot of good ones (or from what I hear) that came out in 2014 and it’s too bad that there aren’t more awards to go around.

So here’s to those champion films that have even been acknowledged by the masses.  Wishing those films that have inspired us, brought us to tears and made us laugh out loud the best during this last competition of the season; bringing home an Oscar.

Goodwill :: Feed the World

If you live in the U.S. or are an American expatriate, or just happen to like celebrating  the American holiday Thanksgiving, you are probably recovering from your turkey coma and now gearing up for the December holidays.  Then there are those of you who have been up since all night to sit in line for all the Black Friday sales.  All I can say is that: You. Are. Brave.

Me?  Well I’m recovering from making dinner for 15 people and will probably catch a movie or some other activity with the family members who are still in town.  To put it lightly, I’m rather exhausted.  I am feeling grateful for all that has happened this year- the good and the bad and not just because this is the time of year when we are supposed to remember to

thanksgiving14But mostly because it really has been a good year, even with the lulls in my work schedule.  Now it seems like I’m going to end the year with plenty to do and I’m trying to psych myself up for it.  December, here I come!

One last thought on this month’s theme of “goodwill”: It’s so easy to forget about the less fortunate at this time of year.  We get caught up in the hubbub of buying gifts and magnificent feasts – all with the people we love, or don’t love in some cases.  But we don’t always remember the people in the rest of the world that are stuck in terrible circumstances and that have no way out of it unless we help them from wherever we are.

The New York Times – Video

So thank you to people like Bob and other celebrities who yield their fame for the greater good and not just to make themselves wealthier.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone – wherever you are, and may we always be grateful for what we have.

Art Meditations :: Cover Art

I draw to relax but that doesn’t happen very often.  I usually get sucked into watching TV or something just as mind-numbing.  Silly considering I stare at a screen all day at work and usually I’m sick of it by the end of the day.  But its so much easier to turn on a movie instead.

Would I still like drawing if I did it for a living?  I doubt I would have the patience to make that happen and who would want my stuff when there are artists like this out there:

Danny Cooke

Nothing I could ever draw would look this dynamic or detailed, which is one of the reasons why I admire this video so much.  The artist, David A. Smith blows me away with his attention to detail and I love the time-lapse used to show his creative process.

The funny thing is that as soon as I saw this video I thought of John Mayer‘s album cover for “Born and Raised” and after actually looking at the filmmaker’s page a little more closely, realized that the same artist did the cover artwork for both albums.

This video is a lot longer than the one made for The Kings of Leon and I’m not a huge fan of the style used but I think the creative process is fascinating.  It makes me very glad that there are people out there who still use century old methods of creating their work.



Feeling daunted to draw something?  I bet you could come up with something pretty incredible yourself.

Meet :: The Sound Designer

Please meet this sound designer:

storm and shelter

I thought it only right to feature a sound designer today after working with so many different people in the industry over the last few months.  I don’t have as much use for an artist like this in documentary as we are supposed to be recording as we film and usually we are trying to take these kinds of noises out.  Therefore I find this story fascinating.

The best part about this film?  The editing.  Recording the sounds is one thing, but to edit it together to make these noises sound like music is a real gift.

Ohana :: Inheritance

Process Creative

What do we inherit from generation to generation?  Of course there are the material items that we pass on, but what values and lessons do we pass on?

I love this film because it’s not just about the items that we pass on to one another, but how we pass on morals and advice to one anther through many modes of communication.  I also love it because it is beautifully filmed and I think the music brings it to another level of nostalgia.

What are we passing on to the next generation?

Originality :: Sand Designs

Light Color Sound

I’ve always admired those who can create something so beautiful even when they know that it will disappear soon after.  How someone can spend so much time on something so beautiful only to have it disappear?

I find this film mesmerizing and calming- something I think the artist feels when he’s creating his art, hence why this film and the music work so well to convey the reason for the time and effort that goes into something so brief.

Landscape :: Northern Lights

It’s been years since I was last in Norway, and this was certainly not what I saw.  We were there in early August in the southern part and reveled in the long daylight hours.  Actually, I think it drove my parents nuts because we didn’t want to go to sleep.  Either way, it was the complete opposite to this film.


Yes, the imagery is beautiful, but I what I really love here is the whimsical way that the filmmaker tells this story.  Oh, and kudos on using a Norwegian composer.

Travel :: Rio de Janeiro


Rio remains a mystery to me.  At least the inner depths of its culture.  I was there a few years ago for two days.  Yes, I know two days in one of the world’s most fascinating cities is not enough time and I realize that now that I’ve been there and saw basically nothing- not for lack of trying though.  In my defense, it was cloudy and wet the 48 hours I was there and to top it all off, the Christ Statue was covered in scaffolding.  I was told it was pointless in going up to see the view as all I would see was a thick fog.  Try as I might, I couldn’t see anything that I wanted to check off my “to see” list. I’m still trying to get back there to see what I missed.

Rio de Janeiro

See, lots of clouds

Despite the clouds and the damp I did get to experience a few things there like the Favela, also known the shanty town, and a few impromptu soccer games on the beach.  And through these small experiences I got a sense of the drastic opposites that make Rio culture what it is.

  • The laid back attitude mixed with intense energy and athleticism. Everyone in Brazil seems to be incredibly fit and I couldn’t find one unattractive person my whole time in the country (which amounted to about two weeks).  Brazilian people are just plain gorgeous.
  • It is also a place that never seems to sleep yet it seems almost tranquil at times.  There is always something going on, yet at the same time it just feels like any other city with its ebbs and flows.
  • The extremely wealthy and the extremely poor.  I spent a few hours in the Favela and witnessed how many of Rio’s inhabitance survives from day to day.  From the highest point, I looked down at the the housing for the wealthy and down at their expensive shopping and personal boats.  The contrast was staggering.

What I like most about this video is the color and the movement.  It really encapsulates everything that I had experienced and what I had had assumed about the place- not that any of my assumptions were proven correct after visiting.  It’s a place that still kind of scares me for its energy and the unknown that I have yet to discover.  Someday, I will return to experience it all again.