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Monday, November 30, 2015

End of month deadlines

The last day of November: had to get films uploaded for $100 Film Festival as well as for Berny Hi's Saskatchewan project. I have some very cool music from Andrew Wenaus who was introduced to me by Johnathan Dyck. I've stoked about the way it goes with the images. 

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Baking begins

This is my first weekend in ages without a heavy deadline hanging over me. I began my baking - made seven types of cookies. 

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Sonia Bonspille Boileau and Jason Brennan with "Le Dep"

Sonia Bonspille Boileau and Jason Brennan were in town, guests of the department, and presented their micro-budget feature Le Dep. I took my animation students to it on Thursday (even though it wasn't animation, I figured that film students need to see professional filmmakers - this is sometimes more important than another of the regular lessons). We had lunch on Friday and they spoke with the film on Friday night. 

Friday, November 27, 2015

Magic lantern show


With Jesse's help, I cut heat resistant parchment paper into narrow strips and mounted them onto dowels so that in class today we could create new semi-animated images configured to my magic lantern I got from Carle Steele a few years ago. I'd tried to do a bit of this with wax paper last year but I didn't have the entire structure and I was also worried that by rigging a 150 watt light to the projector, I might set it on fire. Today worked well, although the paper remained too thick. 

Thursday, November 26, 2015

SIFA awards


Fun at the SIFA awards last night. The hosts, Colby Richardson and Judy Wensel (in their nutty personas as low budget newscasters) were amusing while keeping things moving forward. Big winner was Rhys Pugh who won audience choice (that's what it's really all about) and Logan Vanghel, both for the student film "Queeny", which is an amazingly funny work. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Congratulations Saqib Noman, MFA

Saqib successfully defended his MFA project and paper this morning with John Greyson as his external examiner. Everything went very well. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Jesse helps me with magic lantern

I want to try to create new magic lantern rolls for the projector that Carle Steel gave me a few years ago. I bought some materials including parchment paper (which will withstand the heat better than wax paper and is better to draw on). Jesse Goddard helped me by cutting the paper into strips  and figuring out how to best cut and drill my dowels. Now I can finally do the workshop with the grad students I've been thinking about for two years. Thank you Jesse. 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Cabinet forces us to contend with the dust from hell

Margaret and William found a table/cabinet on sale (as is, a couple scratches) at Canadian Tire the other day and picked it up for a work/project table for William downstairs. Getting it down required moving the fridge and a number of other things, revealing messes we were not prepared for including Sylvie's secrets under the stairs, a poorly installed outlet behind the fridge, and dust.... oh so much dust!!!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Collage collective hard at work

Margaret, Gerda, Sharon, Gerri Ann, and Sheila booked a room at the Balkwill this weekend and worked collaboratively as well as independently on some new works. William and I were trying to find some ancient relics so didn't stick around to contribute to an exquisite corpse, but the work was looking fresh and fun.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Fresh new ancient runes

William went overboard on another school project today, hand copying his assignment, which he'd translated into Norse runes, with a quill by candlelight. I don't know if I was ever this committed.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Patrick Jenkins in Regina

Art for Lunch today was a Toronto animator Patrick Jenkins whom I am embarrassed to admit I had not heard of before. He does excellent animation using paint on glass techniques, top lit, with watercolour. His content for three of his films is based on a very surreal take on film noir with jazz and inexplicable mysteries, people being shot, and ghosts and spirits flying in and out of the scenes. Magical in both form and content. I told my animation students to come and am disappointed at their absences. I got a chance to talk with Patrick after his talk (I was late and wasn't sure what I missed so I held back asking stupid questions). He was really nice and very generous with sharing his techniques. 

Quebec films at Neutral Ground

William and I attended a screening of short films from Quebec at Neutral Ground: NEW CARTOGRAPHY: Digital Humanities and Realities curated by Lysanne Thibodeau. Frequently at screening events there, we arrive late and don't get to sit down. Fortunately for us, although a huge shame on our city, the screening was very poorly attended and we had numerous picks of seats. Brenda started the evening with a good spirited greeting to the crowd which, at that moment, was William and I (as we were trying to summarize our new idea for a 1980s Canister and Friends revival). The low attendance was all the more the shame as these were really interesting films, mixing short dramas, an insightful animated documentary about childbirth and mothers' feelings after giving birth, experimental films including a new one by Steve Woloshen, and some rather entertaining dramatic works. On top of all that, they had sandwiches catered by Italian Star. Wow on top of wow. 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Threepenny Opera

We went to 3Penny Opera performed by Do It With Class at Darke Hall. While the cast was entirely made up of teenagers, the performances were amazing. Costumes and performances were all strong and we really enjoyed ourselves. William and I watched the Pabst film last week and this was a great complement to it, giving us the songs in English and twisting some of the plot points from the film (probably following closer to the play). It was great to see that they didn't censor it, allowing teenagers to swear and drink and (offstage) engage in other "adult" activities. Bravo. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Painting Margaret's parents' house

George and Margaret embarked upon an epic mission of painting and refurnashing their parent's house this week. There are numerous repairs to drywall needed, carpets being sent out to be cleaned, and loads of sanding and painting.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Gertrud's cat

Gertrud's cat Selina got her tail injured somehow. Needed stitches and the ever embarrassing cone to fit her "bare-ass").

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Rob Bos in Regina Beach

I left the house for the first time in two days. Feeling okay so we went to the Regina Beach arts centre which had an opening for a new exhibition by Rob Bos. It was running from noon until four. We arrived at 4:02 and everyone was gone. Interesting show featuring Rob photographing his work in the context of people's houses who have won his work for a year through a lottery. It reminds me of his project where he left his paintings in random places (including one in our alley) a few years ago. There was also a member's sale and I bought a couple of things. 

William makes pancakes

I taught William all the tricks I know about making pancakes. I'm no master, but I can manage to not burn 4 out of 5 of them. I think he can go completely solo next time. 

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Dennis Hopper and Groucho Marx

Stayed home sick and watched tv until even William was feeling woozy as a result. We watched the most boring film on the Marx Brother's tv collection. It is Groucho's only dramatic role in 1961. He is a father who's daughter wants to get married young but he doesn't think they are responsible enough yet.The fiance was familiar. He swaggered around a bit like a Marlon Brando wannabe. Not until the end credits did I realize it was a very young Dennis Hopper.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Terrorist strikes in Paris

Cut my grad class a half hour short today and went home sick. Cold has gotten worse instead of better and fever didn't break for 9 hours. It wasn't until a few hours later that I heard about the huge terrorist attacks in Paris. Feels like the fever didn't really go away. 

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Violence in class today

No one would volunteer in animation class today to get in a fight so I had to take matters into my own hands. I've had a cold all week but luckily I had An in class today to help with an After Effects demon. This is one thing we made. 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Still sick on Remembrance Day

I've never felt so pleased to have a single day off. I spent most of the day in bed or watching tv. The cats kept me company. I took one trip out of the house to drop William at his friend's and that really wore me out.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Griffin visits

William's friend Griffin has been visiting this week. They've connected up a few times. The conversations are bizarre and funny as they seem to instantly begin creating stories whenever they are together. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Sick today

At midnight last night I was suddenly feeling really terrible. I was sick all day today and even though I never have Monday commitments, I had to go into work anyway to take care of some thesis defense deadlines. Bit frustrating as I was nearing fainting but the world only slowed down more. 

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Cleaning up the streets

Cleaned the leaves and muck off the street for two houses on either side of us today. Moved it by wheel barrow (six loads) to the garden. Feels good. William went to a birthday party for Griffin this evening.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Allan and Jana house warming

William's friend Griffin is in town and came over for the afternoon. They made a video about making fudge for tonight.
Allan Dotson in his new office/studio/lego room
We attended a lovely party at Allan and Jana's new house. Didn't play any official games but one of his friends led us on a couple playful conversations including a "game" where one person is interviewed for a job where the interviewee is the only person not aware of what the job is. Below is William interviewing to be a boar wrestler. Fortunately he said he has no sense of smell and never goes to the doctor because he sews up his own wounds. We gave him the job.
William's first successful job interview

Friday, November 6, 2015

A tent or a house?

For the past couple of months this house on 15th Avenue has been being renovated. This is the second time they have put a tent over the entire thing. I believe that it isn't a fumigation tent. The first time I think was for something to do with the roof, but now that they put it back weeks later, I'm less certain. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Margaret and Collage Collective hang at Balkwill

Margaret and her collage collective hung some of their work at the Balkwill Centre, including their new exquisite corpse. A mixture of of old and new pieces. I'm going to need to drive over more cookie trays with the car before winter sets in. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Plains Hotel - Capital Point finally starting?

This week the Capital Point project finally resumed. They were digging and they have this other big tamping machine (or as William calls it, the "sand worm thumper") is in place but not in use yet. It looks like they are digging out what used to be the basement (lots of concrete and rebar) so they are really just continuing to clean up the site. It has been since almost four years since they tore down the Plains. 

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Smashing Pumpkins

Cleaning up after Halloweens. We used to count on the neighbourhood hoodlums to smash these, but now we have to do it ourselves. What is this world coming to?

Monday, November 2, 2015

Loop Collective screening

Dan Browne and Mike Rollo for Loop Collective screening in Regina
William and I attended the Loop Collective experimental film screening. Dan Browne from Toronto was in attendance and he showed his beautiful hand processed film that was really an accident (not exposed) and had the streaky, painterly quality that one gets when they severely over-agitate in hot chemistry. What I found surprising about it was the range he got between his blacks and whites, something that severely failed rolls of mine rarely have. He tells me that he thinks it was a colour negative stock, probably 100 or 200D. I was also particularly struck with the chaotic beauty of "Jenny Haniver" by Stephen Broomer.
My most uncomfortable time was regarding sound. Who thought that it would be a good idea to run a program of mostly silent films just two days after Halloween? William came with me with a pocket full of cellophane-wrapped candies that he crinkled throughout the program. Oops. 

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Halloween Night with decoration, trick and treating,, surprise visitors, and two parties

 My film loop this year combined insects (primarily maple bugs and grasshoppers) with shadows of spiders from the screan they were projected on.
 William did one block of trick or treating. Gerri Ann took his picture (it is on her facebook page) so I took hers as well.
 Geremy and Ellen dropped in for a visit. It was great to have Ellen over - I believe this was her first time to our house (unless she was in the backyard for Geremy's presentation two years ago? I can't remember). She is one of the three blind mice. He is a black market animal smuggler.
After Geremy and Ellen and Gertrud and Fred left, we decided the trick or treaters had run its course and we shut down the hours and headed to the first of two parties - the first being at Misty Wensel's. Had a great conversation with Tanya about science. 
 Our second party of the evening was to Mark and Vanda's. It was a great crowd including Mike and Elizabeth (below) and Charlie and Lorreta (above). We had some great conversations with John and Debra and with Barbara and Kyath.