Inspiration break!

Ok, step away from the blog. We are gonna get away from the ‘journalism’ train for a sec. As you might know from reading this blog for any length of time, I like to find most of my inspiration for my journalism, outside of journalism. So, here are some recent finds that have made me go, hmmm. And for you ‘old school’ journalists, I’ll start with one that IS journalism.
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An intimate look at a place where time is measured not by the movements of the sun but by the rumbling of the el train. Philadelphia, Front St./Kensington Ave.

An ongoing video project by David S Kessler
Shadow World is a project I am currently working on. Set under the el tracks in north Philadelphia, it is an exploration of this unique, fascinating and often intimidating space that (at least for this year) I call home.
-David S Kessler

Here’s the blog site and the Blip.tv site
I fell in love with the raw, yet sensitive approach to these small documentary wonders. They’re straight forward and revealing both about the subject themselves and the sensitivity of the filmmaker. It’s all about characters!

Speaking of characters,

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I missed this gem in theaters, but holy crap this is the best doc I’ve seen in years. Not just because, I was a kid with a fist full of quarters in the arcades, but because of the these two characters. There is so MUCH to learn here. Here’s my list of things I learned:

  • It’s about finding good characters
    It’s not always about getting the details like lighting and using a tripod right, as much as it’s about the subjects themselves
    Let things unfold (I got this from the DVD commentary) so much of this story just happened.
    There is always an ‘underbelly’ FIND IT.
  • Rent it, buy it, just see it.

    Also, another quick doc mention for a small film called The Agronomist
    agro.jpg
    This film rocks because it’s a great history lesson about Haiti, and because almost all the interview footage is back-focused, but it doesn’t matter because the central character is riveting. Another ‘hint’ about finding the right subject.

    Finally, I read this book about 5 years ago, and it’s always ‘stayed’ with me for many reasons. Now that I’ve been given the professional opportunity to make web videos, not just still images for the printed page, this book has found itself back on my nightstand.
    rebel.jpg
    Before you “go off” on me, saying, “How is this journalism related? This book is about Hollywood film making.” I say to you, wait! Take a deep breath. This book is really about being a rebel, an innovator and not taking no for an answer. This dude didn’t have the best equipment or even enough money to do what he wanted, but he made a movie. Sounds like journalism to me! We need more rebels and innovators in journalism right now. We don’t have the right or best video/audio equipment, we don’t have money or even training, but we must produce something everyday. There are some great lessons to be learned from this book and even from these YouTube videos 10-Minute Film School with Robert RodriguezYou can learn video shooting and editing tricks to use in your videos. You know, doing more with less, the new battle cry of journalism. Anyway, enjoy or not,
    -r

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