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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

What a Difference a Day Makes!

Would that it were only a day! In fact, I'm back in the lounge scene in Elan Vital and I haven't been there in a while. It has probably been over a month. I made a decision early on in this process to go through the entire story in order, laying down each shot in each sequence and moving on before the über-perfectionist in me took over. In other words, I just wanted to get the stuff organized before I worried about all the details. I stuck to this plan rigidly - and I am very happy that I did. Because I had scarcely looked back at anything I had just finished, my mind was allowed a break from the busy, obsessive machine that gets started in the midst of creation. Now that I am back in the lounge, smoothing it out - cutting and trimming and tightening, I can look at it with a fresh perspective. I am not bogged down by ideas and notions left over from the writing process or from production. Ironically, this being the case, the film is smoother and actually closer to what I had initially conceived than it would have been if I had not taken this approach. Problems from the rough cut are far more easily solved because, free of the vortex, I am able to see new solutions that simplify and improve the flow and begin to complete the picture.

It really is a beautiful thing that happens when you create something that wasn't there before. You know there is a certain potential there - from the very beginning but you can't get too excited by it just yet. You have to get organized. This is what I have been doing. I knew during production that I got the stuff because everyone worked very very hard to help me achieve my vision. I think that everyone felt at one time or another that something great was happening. I certainly did and it was one of the smoothest film shoots that I've ever been on. Now the difference between that feeling and the actual great thing happening is what I've been writing about in this blog. My approach is not a favorite in this fast paced digital world because I need to get all the stuff out in front of me before I start to organize it - and I have to organize all of it before I start to finesse it. You can think of it like a tri-athalon participant. You would not ask the athlete to bike and swim or run and bike at the same time, right? That would be fantastically absurd but it wouldn't help the person win - and would put him or her at risk of drowning or a brutal bicycle chain injury.

So if you consider logging to be stage 1 (which it should be considering the amount of footage), I am currently on stage 3 of the editing process. So far, it is my favorite stage - until the next one I suppose when we marry the sound to the picture. As of today, the process this time around has been smooth as silk and very satisfying. I could go on, comparing this process to painting but I'm sure I passed the average attention span a while ago. So now - let's have some comments!

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