Freshly relieved of my Creative Art teaching responsibilities and greatly assisted with social media management, I not only had time to create videos, edit photography, and write blogs on the ground; after a 10-hour day, I regularly had hours to myself in the evening to produce work of my own volition and be in the incredible city of Berlin.Read More
I've been talking to a co-worker a lot lately about her balance of consuming and creating, and it reminded me of my old balance between absorbing what the industry is putting out and telling the industry what I'm adding to the mix. After almost two years, here's the latest Consume & Update!
Great use of soundtrack to arc story
This Vimeo staff pick, directed by Peter Simonite & Annie Gunn, is a stunning result of great cameras handled by great cameramen. It is also a great example of a singular soundtrack lending to the arc of a story in a short film.
I've begun teaching a new media lab at THINK Global School, which encourages students to share and reflect their world experiences using new media. An upcoming lesson will be on the use of soundtracks to carve out, structure, or heighten the message of a video. I'm on the hunt for great examples of this, and I'm also asking filmmakers to explain their choices to the students.
What Berlin looks and feels like to Berliners
Christian Andersen makes the second video in his series on the street aesthetic of a city, this one "capturing the culture and everyday life of native Berliners. In this short film, I also tried to capture the special urban vibe Berlin has and visualize the aesthetic of Berlin's street corners, parks, buildings and structure." I think the coloration and rack focusing fit really well to the soundtrack by Aphex Twin.
East Berlin architecture in game form
This video by Sergej Hein does what we all wandering East Berlin want to do with our telekinetic powers:
The idea is based on a kind of parody of the former Socialist building style. They used to build whole cities where each house was designed identically to create cheap housing for workers. These ‘blocks’ were so similar that in Soviet times, you could easily wake up at a friends place in another city and still feel like you are in your flat. Even the furniture was the same.
The Love Competition: A range of people are interviewed about love and then receive MRIs to measure their brains as they ponder love. The arc of the story is compelling, and the music is powerfully linked to the sentiment of the short film. Berlin Dynamic: A timelapse video of Berlin's many vistas and defining aspects, including the TV tower skyline, bright yellow subway, and famous buildings Little Big Berlin: A tilt-shift timelapse of Berlin set to Franz Liszt, if you're looking for a calming sensation.
Update on Nomadderwhere
For the last month, I've been feeling incredibly confident in my role as media specialist for this world-touring school, TGS. I can't tell if it's the homey accommodation we have, the energy of Berlin, the enthusiasm of the students, or something else. I've created a rhythm of working and playing that feels solid and sustainable, which is harder than it seems to create structure in a fluid, ever-changing environment. It's been so successful that I've been able to document for myself.
This weekend marked our first school trip out of Berlin. We hit up Bavaria for a look at Munich, a nearby concentration camp, the Alps, and the Champions League final game between Bayern München and Chelsea. Details to follow.
Here's that work from the last month in Berlin:
Guten tag and lederhosen and whatnot: bound for Berlin: I let ya'll know I'm going to Berlin...and planning on real-time blogging er'thang.
Photoblog: details of the hipster haven that is Berlin: I wondered around Mitte (the city center) with my camera, finding and having moments.
Finding the fulcrum below me in Berlin: A prose poem on the flight to, initial settling experience in, and eventual comfort found in Berlin, Germany while working for TGS.
What our experiences in Berlin look like thus far: A run-through of three Berlin-based and Berlin-focused films I've made so far for TGS.
The opinions stated in this post are mine and do not reflect the positions, strategies, or opinions of THINK Global School.
Though I'm not processing my own experiences in video form as of lately (due to lack of time), I'm really please with what I've been able to crank out in Berlin. There are moments when what I've documented for work has impacted me, mostly at Wannsee Haus where the Final Solution was created. In this great city of culture and history, cinematic moments abound. Here are the ones I've caught thus far.Read More
The immigration line stretched to meet me at row 35 on the 767-200. A strong arm could toss a tennis ball beyond the width of TXL's international wing. Elbowing through the Red Rover chain that was a Canadian tour group, bags launched to my shoulders and bolted for fresh air.Read More
So where am I supposed to be now? On my way to Prague. This backtracking is exhausting, and, frankly, it feels like the sort of anti-introspective writing that is not the mission of this adventure. I guess at some point I will want to remember what I did in Prague and honor my time spent there. Isn't that why most people write about their travels? Or maybe I feel I just need to document where I place my feet for those not walking alongside me. Maybe it's because all of these destinations are blurring together, not just in hindsight, and the most intriguing afterthought of the Eurotrip is finding out how I don't like to experience the world. With that said, why don't I just stick to the highlights. Sorry to anyone who was really looking forward to an elaborate account of this very old, and actually very cool, city.
1. Meeting our own personal local resource. On our twelve hour bus ride, a fellow American/EU resident sought out our company, and we instantly found a guide for the city's best local bar, the cheapest local transportation, and a place to stay upon our late arrival time. Matt was recovering from an emotionally rough week, and we offered him some company/drinking buddies in this city of prime beer quality. 2. Hany Bany, aka Hunny Bunny: our local bar of choice and the setting for two multi-hour sessions of relaxation and observation of the Prague youth. 3. The architecture...it wasn't half bad. One might say thrilling. 4. Nights of cheap groceries, home cooking, cheap beers and soccer viewing at our neighborhood pub. You could say we were a little shocked at the server uniforms for the ladies and their lack of...modesty. This was no raunchy bar, but I guess the frequent clientele like a little spice at their regular watering hole. We averted our eyes often.
Now follow me along to Berlin. Feel the breeze inside the, once-again, well-kept and modern train cars. Wander along with us as we find the metro stop "Senefelderplatz" (hey, that's like Seinfeld...yes, that's what we thought!) and find a super cool hostel in an old brewery. Oh, what fun weare having altogether in the beer garden, watching the Spain and Sweden Euro Cup game. Darn that Euro and its massive inflation of beer prices. Can't you feel your wallet emptying?
Alright, enough of that. Here's what I remember from Berlin. It's 4:30am, and I wake up to two Kiwis in my room, telling me it was time to go to the zoo. I fall back in bed, confused, and arise once more a few minutes later. I was fully dressed to go out and experience the Berliner nightlife, make-up smeared on the pillow...and a roommate not in sight. I pulled a Ricky Ricardo and stomped out of the room to hear some much needed " 'splaining." As I step out, a guy staying across the hall emerges from his room and says, "Are you looking for Alexis?" "What on earth is going on." "You fell asleep."
iiiiiiIIIIIIIIIIII FELL ASLEEP?!?!?! Ooooooh boy, the anger pot is a-boiling now.
Four hours earlier, Alexis and I were chit-chatting like school girls and playing cards on the floor, but after I returned from a restroom break, I found her asleep on the floor, unmotivated (after gentle questioning) to go out on the town. We have yet to go out on this trip, and I was anticipating a nice change of pace that night. However, we mutually agreed to go to bed.
AH! But alas! My trusty partner-in-crime ventured off during my subconscious adventures to befriend three guys across the hall and join them at the bars. There she was...sitting outside in the courtyard with her new friends. I gave her an ear and a fist full. APPARENTLY, the story goes that she got up to use the restroom and forgot her key. I was unresponsive to her door pounding, but the guys across the hall sure were. Socializing ensued...for her. What a friend. Lumberjacks, you can't trust 'em. Regardless of my dramatic interpretation, we ended up having a fun morning with these new friends and the rising sun.
Touring Berlin the next day had its perks, but the highlight of the day was the wild celebration we witnessed and joined at the public viewing of Turkey's last minute dramatic victory over Czech Republic. The beer garden was bleeding with Turkish flags, faces and apparel sporting the moon and star emblem. Those brave few with a Czech flag were given a hard time in that crowd. Our three new friends laughed, cheered and photographed while I hopped on Alexis' back to stream through the mosh pit of screaming Turks. We fled the scene with the mob, hoping to land on a lively after party, but amazingly hundreds of Turkey fans vanished in front of our eyes and reappeared streaming across the night sky, all squeezed into one overground metro car. We missed the party, but, man, what a night.