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Thursday, February 22, 2018

TinWife by Travis Neufeld

Film program alumnus Travis Neufeld presented his luscious short film The TinWife at the Rainbow Cinema this evening, along with Mattias's "Gas Can" which I discussed in a post a few months ago.  TinWife is the sort of film we all wish we could make, and given enough hard work we could. Shot over the course of a year on weekends, crowd funded, and created with equal parts blind passion and meticulous care for details, Travis creates a strange 1950-esque distopic future filled with characters we actually care about and empathize with. The trailer gives away many of the plot points (it is only a short film after all) but it still contained a few surprises that I left the theatre thinking about. Wow. Huge congratulations to Travis and everyone involved in this film. 

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Thums Up

William and I lunched with Mike and Geremy at the university. We picked up some pop and samosas on the way. I had a "Thums Up" which is made in India by Coke and is all right (I'm a cola snob and hate 80% of them). Geremy's new radio show on CJTR started this evening where he talked about movies with two others. Fairly animated. I think the others were more prepared or more aggressive than Geremy and dominated the time, but it was fun. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Mike in town, telling stories

Mike made a sort of surprise trip to Regina this week. We played some story cubes and some Dr. Who Fluxx and a short game of Carcassonne.

Monday, February 19, 2018

William drawing of me with knife

William has a lot of drawings and paintings to do over the break. This is a pretty good set of homework, something fun and nothing heavy but a deadline none the less. He was drawing a figure from memory and I thought he could do better from a figure so I posed for him with a knife (his character has a sword) and made him draw. It was only a few minutes but I'm jazzed over the result. 

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Franz Kafke video game

A few weeks ago William struck a deal with me that if he finished reading all the Kafka books that I would buy him the Franz Kafka video game off Steam. Having read The Trial, The Castle, Amerika, and Konundrum (a collection of short stories), I ordered the game today. It looked pretty cool, even though it didn't take him long to play (started at lunch, we broke for 3+ hours for Black Panther and them supper, and he was finished by 9:00). It was mostly odd puzzles. He had fun. Once scene was set in Lynch's black lodge. 

Saturday, February 17, 2018

relaxing day of working all day... at home

It was my intention to stay home all day today. We'd talked a bit about taking a trip but I'm really glad we didn't as I'm barely able to stay awake through the day. We watched some tv and read and William drew. I worked on the videos for the Lemon Drop fundraiser which is only a week away. My tests work and the video is almost there. One projector will be horizontal, the other vertical (above).  

Friday, February 16, 2018

overhead improv

I have a mental block about preparing for certain things like when I want to tell a story using the overhead projector. I've been thinking about this for two weeks, have had many many ideas, even wrote down my plan, but still refused to let myself practice. I think this one started to take shape in the last hours before I did it.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Williem Wennekers

For our third meeting with a animators, Diane helped connect Haley and I to "Fugget About It" creator/writer Willem Wennekers who has made a pretty amazing career for himself since finishing his film degree here. We Skyped for about 40 minutes and learned a lot about him, his process, the industry, passion, motivation, drive, and patience.

With one day left before the break, I can hardly hold my head up. William made bread sticks. Paul came over. Class went fine (more Bolex work). 

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Student jump to it

We were shooting with the Bolex in Film 200 this week. I think this is usually the turning point in the term when we go from lecture learning to fun learning. 

Sunday, February 11, 2018

new bathroom lights, again

This afternoon we replace the bathroom lights. We put some in only four or five years ago but they turned out to be sort of lemons. They looked a bit like these but narrower. However the similarity stopped there. The old ones had a separate glass cylinder for each of the four lights. The cylinders had a threaded metal band attached to the glass. As the lights heated and cooled, the metal/glass join would crack. The result was that almost any time you touched them, and especially any time you tried to change the bulb, the odds were very high that the glass would come apart from the metal and you needed to replace the glass. The company fixed the problem but the new units were 99% the same. The same look, the same mechanics, but the new less breakable glass didn't fit into the original fixtures. We had a bunch of glass they sold us for the old method (for a discount I think) but last week we ran out of them and now we have a new thing. Very bright (the light, not us). 

Friday, February 9, 2018

strobe lights and short exposures

More fun in grad class today. Brought out my headache creating strobe light and also explored the world at 1/4000 of a second.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Work feeling good

By the end of today I was completely exhausted but having been feeling fairly good about stuff. Class with Haley today was a conversation with animator Adrian Dean at a coffee shop. It's difficult to label such a nice morning as "work". I noticed as I left at 6, having done actual work, the office chart in the hallway is finally updated with me listed as head. Details like this please me.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Shape of Water

Wow. Loved this film. Margaret managed to have the night off from work (she's been working lots of Tuesdays) and Allan was over, even though he's coming down with a new cold. Our new car is in the shop and the old car was in its first accident (William was scratched by some girls practicing they parallel parting by the school, thankfully not enough damage to even call damage, literally just a scratch an inch long - see below) so we were able to all go together. The crowd was small so if anyone wants the theatre experience on it, they better go.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Xincheng's 3D printing

Many interesting things emerged from my back to back to back to back meetings today (some planned, some just happened as I sat at my desk trying to mind my own business). Xincheng's 3D printed objects are coming along. Still needs paint and detailing, but I'm confident.

Happy February 5

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Cat's ear

The ear medicine for Sylvie is nearly done. She shakes her head after getting the drops so her fur is saturated in medicine residue. We tried to wash her a bit, but the success was limited (unless our goal was to annoy her).

Taste of Cathedral

Cathedral Festival fundraiser "Taste of Cathedral" was a really nice event this year. In particular, the music by Ava Wild delivered a sensuous background to conversation, eating, and bidding. Ran into Lynal and talked about a crazy-terrible film from 1991 called "Cast a Deadly Spell" that we're definitely going to find and watch (detective Herbert Lovercraft, the only 1948 cop not using magic, must find the necronomicon). 

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Lego robot event

Vishal and I documented the Lego robot challenge event (for teens) at the University. Vishal did a far greater job that I was likely to have done, anticipating the sorts of shots we need, maneuvering himself into the places most suitable to get them. I have to admit that I expected more emphasis on design than on function from the entries, but it seems like every team was struggling just to get some working without much time for frivolity. 

Friday, February 2, 2018

Kevin MacKenzie at Art Gallery of Moose Jaw

We drove out to Moose Jaw to dine with Kevin Mackenzie and attend his opening at the MJAG. We also got the opportunity to meet Tori Foster who is doing some incredible things with superimposed photos and the urban landscape.

pinhole photos with grad students

I'm always wanting to do too much with the grad students each week. I don't think I'll stop, otherwise I will hit the opposite problem - running out of stuff to do -- and I hate that. Today we worked on long exposures, ghost photography, and pinhole. Here is one pinhole photo, I think by either Berny or Sandra, but it might have been Vishal or Kyle.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Talk with Raul

A big thank you to Raul today for giving Haley some great stories and advice about working in animation. Stellar morning with coffee.