What’s on the Filmmaker’s Corkboard? Part 7

An old friend from high school, David Levine, wrote, “I think it’s time you gave us a tour of your corkboard.” Who am I to say no to such a request?

Not that long ago I posted a photo on the Facebook that had as its background my corkboard. An old friend from high school, David Levine, left a comment, “I think it’s time you gave us a tour of your corkboard.”

Who am I to say no to such a request. Here then, with apologies to David Hockney, is the corkboard above my desk. And below that a key explaining some of the things on it. (The big black…

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A Present for You - Music and Video - Brouwer’s Etude No. 1

A Present for You – Music and Video – Brouwer’s Etude No. 1

For all of you who have donated to A Life’s Work, read the blog, liked the Facebook page, left a comment somewhere, or supported me and my work in some way, here’s a wee present for you — Leo Brouwer’s Etude No. 1. Hope you like it.

Video shot by photographer and friend Peter LaMastro.

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Your Fortune Awaits You!

And if you play those numbers and win the megabucks, remember A Life’s Work.

Broadacre City: Just My Imagination?

Did I imagine archival footage of Frank Lloyd Wright hovering over his model of Broadacre City?

A few years ago I blogged about an imagined quote from  Fredric Chopin.

trevor.pratt, flickr

trevor.pratt, flickr

This happened again recently. I know I’ve seen archival footage of Frank Lloyd Wright standing over the model of Broadacre City (now on view at the Museum of Modern Art through June 1), his vision of urban design. He looks imposing, unshakeable in his conviction that this is how cities should be designed…

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Documentary Dilemma: One Scene from The Wilco Movie

One scene from I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, the Wilco documentary, typifies a kind of documentary dilemma.

I recently watched the documentary I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, the film about the trials and tribulations of the band Wilco as they make and try to release their album Yankee Foxtrot Hotel. It’s a good film about the intersection of art and commerce, but one of the more interesting things to me as a filmmaker was a scene that typifies the kind of decision most documentary filmmakers must…

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Balancing Act

Many of us earn our livings in fields related to our art. How do you let the good stuff from your day job into YOUR work and keep the bad stuff out?

My day job is as a videographer for an esteemed academic institution in New York City. I shoot and edit videos, mostly of faculty who are engaged in research. Some faculty do work and research in far off places like Brazil and Uganda. It’s wonderful work that I love. The only downside is that they can’t send me to Brazil or Uganda to shoot the faculty at work there, so I rely on  using the ”Ken…

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Trees as Timelines

Cross sections of trees used as timelines. How do they make you feel? Discuss.

I was recently out West where I saw this:

Ponderosa Pine Gazebo

Closer inspection revealed that  this structure sheltered a large chunk of tree trunk.

Ponderosa Pine

This was once the largest Ponderosa Pine tree.

The Stats

There are many of these tree-trunk-as-timeline around the country, usually with the same historical milestones  on it.

The Timeline

There is the “Wow, that’s old” factor that first strikes when you look at these things, but my eye…

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Expertise? Expression!

A rumination on expertise and expression.

When I was casting Tango Octogenario, I had to make a very big decision. The script called for 80-year-old tango dancers. The  decision I had to make was do I cast actual octogenarians or do I go for younger dancers and try to age them with make up.

Elderly dancer’s would be more authentic. Younger dancers might be more nimble, might be crisper dancers.

When I met Alex and Jean Turney, my dilemma…

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A Quote from Samuel Beckett, The Playwright with the Best Hair Ever

“Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.”  ​ Samuel Beckett​

Do Scientists Pray? Albert Einstein Responds. So does Jill Tarter, in a Way

A 6th grader once asked Albert Einstein if scientists pray. A nearly 50-year-old filmmaker asked basically the same question of Jill Tarter 70 years later.

There’s a nifty website called Letters of Note. Two letters of note you’ll find there are an exchange between a sixth grader named Phyllis and Albert Einstein. Here’s the exchange, which  LoN took from the book Dear Professor Einstein: Albert Einstein’s Letters to and from Children.
Albert Einstein

The Riverside Church
January 19, 1936

My dear Dr. Einstein,

We have brought up the question: Do scientists pray?…

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