Wednesday, February 27, 2013

I Am Worthy; a comedy for Suicide Prevention

Suicide is a horrific event that has affected many people. And opening up a conversation about it can be just as horrific. Unless the conversation starts with Emerson Theater Collaborative's newest play: I Am Worthy- The Gospel according to Josh.

I Am Worthy Project - The Gospel According to Josh

This one man show  encompasses a 30 character, 7 song show, about a small town boy who follows his dreams to Hollywood despite the tempestuous relationship with his pious father. Along the way he must navigate his religious upbringing, an escape to New York, his starring roles in two reality TV shows, and ultimately his father's tragic suicide. Discussion will follow each performance.

There will be performances on

Friday April 5 from 7pm-9pm
Saturday April 6 from 7pm-9pm
Sunday April 7th from 4pm-7pm

The performances will be held at
Union Baptist Church, 119 High Street, Mystic CT 06355

I have worked with ETC (Emerson Theater Collaborative) in the past as their set designer. They are a great little theater group with big dreams. They work to produce new plays that without their help may never have had the chance to be produced. They really work to get the community involved and to pick pieces that share an important message.  To see more about what ETC  is all about, check out their website at

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Film set- the walkie talkie

Want to learn the ins and out of a film set before setting foot on one? Check out It's an amazing blog that goes through everyhting you'll need to function on a set like a pro. For this post I referenced their walkie talkie etiquette for you, and added some of my own thoughts.

Walkie Talkies- the sign that you have progressed beyond the guerrilla filmmaking to a professional set.

Walkie-talkies are a powerful time saving tool- treat them nicely, or your paycheck may be the one paying for it's replacement.


  1. Channel 1 tends to be for interdepartmental communication- and the only one saying more than "copy that" should be the AD (Assistant Director)
  2. If the conversation is longer or more complicated than a quick order move it to another channel, in my experience that is often channel 2
  3. each department tends to have it's own channel to deal with all their own chatter. Sound, Art Department, and G&E. If you need to talk to another department, go to their channel, but then ask them to switch to the chat channel if it's a longer conversation.
  4. If you are a PA, stay on 1 unless talking to your superior on another channel- AD's hate it when they're not being heard.
Random Tips:
  1. Key for a second before speaking, otherwise your first couple words will be clipped off.
  2. Pay attention to your walkie buttons and dials, it's easy to get unplugged, or push the button that will make it que. And Queuing walkies drive everyone nuts. So stay in the habit of making sure you're plugged in with the volume up and on the right channel.
  3. This one will seem like common sense, however it happens often with beginners, Keep your headset on you head. It will never be of any good around your neck.
  4. speak slowly and calmly so you don't have to repeat yourself.
  5. If you need to, have some instructions repeated do it, it's ok.
  6.  As with any situation: think before you speak.

Now for the fun part.

Walkie-Talkie Lingo:

10-1 (10-100):
Standard washroom break. Although this falls under more than just walkie etiquette and is more a common set etiquette. ’10-1′ or ’10-100′ simply means your going to the bathroom.

10-2 (10-200):
Longer break…Not as common as 10-1, but still used from time to time. Some people are a little embarrassed about using, but we’re all human. Don’t be embarrassed.

This one isn’t standard, but I find it works well. Often times you ask for a 10-1 and sneak off for a quick pee to then realize you have to do more than just pee…a lot of the guys I work for just ask for an upgrade. “Mind if I upgrade that 10-1, sir?” This tell your boss you wont be as quick as a 10-1.

Copy or Copy that:
Acknowledging that you have received the information, understand and are doing it.

Walkie Check:
Is said when you first turn on your walkie. Someone will reply to you with ‘Good Check’ this means your microphone is working properly and are being heard clearly.

Going off Walkie:
This is what you say when you are talking off you walkie or will not being able to communicate. It’s very important to let everyone know that you wont be available.

Used when someone tries to communicate with you but you are too busy to reply, you simple say Standby

Standing by:
This is great to use when you’ve completely a quick task, like panning a light and are standing by it for any further instructions.

Iggy for John:
‘Iggy’ being your name, ‘John’ the name of the person you are wanting to communicate with. See responding to that call below.

Go for John:
When someone calls for you over the walkie you respond with “Go for *your name here*”. This tell them that you have heard them asking for you and are awaiting instructions.

What’s your 20:
This means ‘where are you?’. Often times asked before given a task.

Eyes on John:
‘Eyes on’ is used when you’re looking for someone or something. Sometimes you will hear something like “Does anyone have eyes on my wrench” or “Does anyone have eyes on the boss?”

Flying in:
This tells other that you are flying in to set or bringing something in.

Stepped on:
When two people try to talk on the same channel at the same time. All anyone will hear is static. A third party will generally say "repeat that please, you just got stepped on"

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

I love this blog! They have an fun writing style and are obviously seasoned professionals in the business. The blog does tend to focus on G&E, and production thoughts, but it's all very useful information and smartly written.

Some of my favorite posts are:

10 Things Inexperienced Cinematographers do that Annoys the Rest of the Crew
Where they describe some honest mistakes that newer cinematographers do. It's good advise for all newbies however. When you're on a film set, everyone has a specific job to do. So trust your team, and give them the time to do their job well.

5 Must Haves for an at Home Office
All simple tips that really do make a serious difference when in pre-prodution

Script Breakdown
Every designer ever will have to breakdown their scripts. They have some useful tips on how to catch everything you need.

And my top favorite post, which I will make sure any of my new-to-set arties read before our first day:

HowToFilmSchool’s Guide to Film Set Etiquette

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Getting hired to the art department - cover letter and resume

Ok, you found the job and found the contact info, awesome!

Now what?

Write up a cover letter, dust off your resume, and rearrange your website/portfolio. You should always customize what your sending based on the job you are aiming to get. I personally hate doing all of these things. I get super nervous every step of the way, but if I- in my anxious condition- can successfully do it, you most certainly can.

In the cover letter you get the chance to introduce yourself to your potential new boss. Keep it short and to the point and use the job posting to format your introduction.  Here is an example I found on where I substituted a few things as if I were applying to be an art PA on a big budget film. Make sure to use examples from your past experiences to flesh out the middle of the paragraph. 

In the context of the often casual film world this may seem a little formal, but it will show your respect for the project and the person taking the time to look at your resume.

"Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name,
The description you posted for an art department PA parallels my interests and qualifications perfectly.
With my background in art and film, I am confident that I would make a very successful and creative production assistant. Having worked on multiple ULB SAG independent films I have been exposed to a number of aspects of the film world and how to creatively deal with the challenges it often presents. My experience as a production designer and artistic director on pervious films demonstrates my capability of working with others through the creative process of production while meeting the challenges presented to me. 
I have attached a copy of my resume to this email and invite you to view my imdv page (link) and website for examples of my work (link to website here.) I would appreciate the opportunity to make a substantial contribution by exploring the process of such an exciting project through your production. I welcome the opportunity to meet with you to further discuss my candidacy and will call next week to see if we might arrange a time to speak. Thank you for your time and consideration.
FirstName LastName"

Here's a few key points: taken straight from job for your viewing pleasure

1st Paragraph

Introduce yourself and name the position for which you are applying and how you learned of the opening or organization. If an individual made you aware of the opening, be sure to use their name and affiliation. Example: “Dr. Jane Kwan at CSULB suggested I forward my resume in response to your posting for a Research Assistant.”
2nd Paragraph
  • Tell why you are interested in the organization or position.
  • Discuss qualifications that would be of greatest interest to the employer, using positive statements about skills and abilities.
  • Indicate any related experience, educational background, or specialized training that might increase your employability.
3rd Paragraph
  • Reiterate your interest.
  • Refer the reader to your enclosed resume.
  • Close by making a request for an interview and provide your phone number and email address, or indicate when you will follow up.
Tips for a Professional Cover Letter
  • One page, 8½“ x 11” document size
  • If printed for traditional mail, use white or off white stationery paper
  • Use a standard business letter layout or use the same banner that you have created for your resume.
  • Your cover letter should be in the same font as your resume, ranging from 11 to 12 point in such type as Arial, Courier, Helvetica, or Times.
  • Address the letter to a specific person whenever possible. Sometimes you will need to contact the employer’s offices to determine the name of the person to whom the letter should be addressed.
  • Give care and attention to spelling and grammar, including the spelling of names.
  • If the employer has given explicit instructions for how to submit your cover letter and resume, follow them.
  • Every contact you have with the employer, including your cover letter, serves as material for their evaluation of you as a candidate. This is your one chance to make a great first impression!


  • Purpose of resume is to obtain an interview
  • Use a font style and size that are easy to read; 10pt – 12pt
  • Keep resume to one page, if possible
  • State an objective to clearly articulate the type of position for which you are applying
  • Target your information to the job objective
  • Under the Education and Experience sections list most recent information first
  • Highlight accomplishments
  • Organize information in a logical manner
  • Pay careful attention to spelling, punctuation, grammar, and style
  • Proofread carefully. Do not rely on “spell check.” Use a dictionary. Ask others to proofread it for you.
  • Should be neat in appearance; center on page
  • Keep information honest, clear, and concise
  • Print on good quality white or off-white paper
  • When sending electronically save as PDF
  • Remember to add your IMBD link on your resume

Here is a link to how to format a film resume: 

And here are a few more sample resumes:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


This Friday my fellow NEAC member, Marc Pettersen, will be hosting an exciting event showcasing his newest artistic pursuit- projection mapped animation.  In the atmosphere created by DJ Miah Love of Fake Life, animated projection work will transform the walls of our little gallery.

The event runs from at 8pm to 12am
An 18 and older event
It is a suggested donation of $5 at the door to get in
Cash bar all night long
And a 12' screen for video gaming

For more information, Check out the facebook event.

So, what is projection mapping anyway?
By using 3D mapping tools you can project onto any screen, irregular or not, and create any number of  video installations. Here's a very extravagant example:

This fundraiser will fuel the pilot projection program for after school activities in the Middletown area. The projectors, when not being used excite and educate young artists, will be used in the MAC650 gallery for neighborhood movie and video game nights.

If you would like to hear more about Marc's vision for projection mapping and how he plans to work with his students on further project check out his Kickstarter page:

So come join the fun. We'll be dancing, drinking, and gaming on a 12' screen all night.

Here's a few more examples of projection mapping where you can see a little better how the software shapes it's projection surfaces: