Archive for January, 2012

January 29th 2012

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Filmwise:

Mesocafé: Liaising with festivals.
Cannes documentary: Completed a very preliminary viewing copy.
A  large chunk of the week has been taken up with admin work for the film.
The completion of the rough cut of the Cannes documentary, including temporary music and subtitles, took the remainder of the week.
Obviously, this is a mere foundation for the final locked picture; it is, nevertheless, an auspicious beginning.
Peace and love,
Ja’far

January 22nd 2012

Sunday, January 22nd, 2012

Mesocafé: The special visual effects files are almost ready for Daniel. Our planned meeting for Friday was postponed due to unforseen circumstances. The delay leaves me with more time to organise the different strands of footage that are needed to create the clips with green screen elements.

Cannes documentary: On Friday, spent a couple of hours reviewing the current cut. It looks good. There is still more work to be done.

Bikes..

Over the past couple of weeks there have been a few instances in my life that have involved bicycles.

Morning – Due to engineering work on the Tube, I had to use an alternative station to get to work. Crossing a bridge and marveling at the beauty of this crisp winter morning, I noticed a cyclist – middle-aged, jumper, jeans, utilitarian choice of bike and jacket – attempting to keep his balance while chatting on the phone. ‘She wants a baby! Yes! Well, we’re trying! I know…’

Noon – Hurrying to the supermarket, I couldn’t help overhearing a couple pondering the merits of crossing a foot bridge on their bikes. ‘It’s a challenge’, he told her. Without further ado, she zapped ahead of him onto the bridge. ‘Why is it such a challenge?’ I thought to myself.

It was seconds later that I realized the bridge is made of wooden planks that are separated by a gap at regular intervals. The moment I began to form a close-up in my mind’s eye of the wheel and the gap, the bike’s front partially sank through the gap. The woman was evidently hurt by the fall. I went over and suggested to the man to get his lady some ice from the nearby cafe. I hope she didn’t break anything.

Evening – Deciding to walk past the station immediately next to my place of work in the City, and heading to the stop that is about 15 minutes’ walk, I found myself drawn to an American-style bar overlooking a main thoroughfare. Standing across the road, and in the full knowledge that the lens would not be fast enough to capture any of the faces of the customers chatting inside, I reached for my camera. Being mildly annoyed with myself for not having a tripod with me, I waited for the traffic to subside. When there finally was a gap in the flow of vehicles, I steadied my hands, lined the shot, and the moment I pressed the button, a cyclist whooshed right past.

Looking at the resumed march of traffic, I thought of abandoning the whole enterprise. ‘The photo is ruined by the person on the bike.’ It was only when I reviewed the image that I realised that he/she had been either so quick, or had actually ducked so low, that they were out of frame.

Peace and love,

Ja’far


January 15th 2012

Monday, January 16th, 2012
  • Mesocafé: technical hitch delays online of special effects.
  • Cannes documentary: refining and addressing those parts of the cut that I have always known to be in need of more work.

Hard Drive..

On Friday morning, I was meant to receive Daniel at my place to go through the online version of the footage that he needs in order to generate a high resolution replacement for the special visual effects in our film. The night before, I thought I would have a look at the work I had done up to that point, preparing the said files.

Not only was the little work I had already done absent, but the whole of the external hard drive on which the high resolution rushes were saved would not be recognised by the computer. Worse still, when the machine finally admitted to being connected to the external hard drive, it simply called it “LaCie” – the make of the drive, as opposed to the name under which it had been formatted.

Panic.

The fact that I do have an extra back-up copy of the rushes did not subside my sense of anxiety at experiencing first-hand what could have been a catastrophe – OK, I am labouring the point.

Later in the evening, the hard drive and the machine decided to make peace and recognise one another.

The episode threw my schedule off course, and despite my frenzied early morning attempts to complete the extraction of the relevant files, I had to text Daniel my apologies and asked that we postpone the session.

Hopefully, I should have everything ready by next weekend.

Peace and love,

Ja’far


January 8th 2012

Monday, January 9th, 2012

Filmwise:

  • Continuing to liaise with film institutions and festivals.
  • Spending more time with the Cannes documentary – it is coming along nicely.
  • Daniel and I had a chat about the best route for onlining the special visual effects elements in the film. We are meeting at the end of the week.

Attempting to make sense of my system for archiving film-related paperwork earlier this week, I stumbled upon a file for a short film that I wanted to shoot several years ago. The DP, producer and I were well into pre-production, and we actually held two casting sessions. At the last minute, I decided to pull out, as yet another chapter rewrite on the thesis became necessary.

Looking at the notes I’d taken after meeting a couple of actors, I wish if I’d jotted down their full names; it would be lovely to see how everyone’s doing.

Peace and love,

Ja‘far


January 1st 2012

Sunday, January 1st, 2012

Happy New Year.

For the last week of the year, I have been busy finishing off the treatment for my next feature film, as well as spending a bit of time with the Cannes documentary.

Over the next eight weeks, I would like to complete a re-write of the treatment for the feature, and get the Cannes documentary to a point where I can start looking into sound design and music score.

My immediate task is to sort out some film-related admin stuff and prepare for Daniel the shots that he will need for creating an online version of the special visual effects. Hopefully, I should have the clips ready for him by the end of next week.

We will then need to find a mutually suitable time to get the work done.

Aside from good health and happiness for my family and friends, including the extended Mesocafé family and readers of this blog, I also wish for the new year to bestow success and harmony on the Arab Spring as it struggles against the brutality of the regime in Syria and other parts of the Arab world.

Peace and love,

Ja’far