On a Second Beginning

Week One provided many unique challenges.  First off, it was two videos, instead of one (if you include the intro), I had to build this website, create new distribution IDs, and, most daunting, I had to figure out what the hell I was doing.  What did I want this show to be?  In doing all of that, I experienced an incredible landscape of emotions: from joy, excitement, and anticipation, to fear, premature regret, and a distinct feeling that I was unequal to this task, that I was biting off more than I could chew, and I wouldn’t be able to accomplish the creation of one character that could hold an audience’s interest, let alone fifty.  I kept it a secret from my friends and family, in case I decided to back out at the last minute.  I told my girlfriend, because I knew that this was a major time commitment that I would be adding to the next year of my life, and that it would certainly affect our relationship in some ways.

Luckily, she has been extremely supportive, and as I began to tell my friends, one by one, they were extremely supportive, too.  Launching the project on Wednesday, I was again given words of support and encouragement, and I received some validation that yes, some people thought this was a cool idea for a project, that they were looking forward to seeing how it pans out, and that they wished me luck.  Of great import, too, was that I felt satisfied with how Week One went, and that I enjoyed the process (which is really the point).  For all of that, I am incredibly grateful.

So, I go into Week Two with a new set of challenges, the biggest, most confounding one being Time.  Time, is not on my side this week.  Wednesday night I was dead to the world (having only had about two hours of sleep, dealing with launch logistics the night before), Thursday and Friday I had commitments to see friends in plays, and now here I am, on Saturday morning, on a bus to Washington D.C.  My dad is there on business, so I’m heading down to hang out with him for about twenty-seven hours, then I’m heading back up.  I also have plans on Monday night.  In other words, because I work 9 – 6 every day, I have Sunday and Tuesday nights to do this thing… or that how I was thinking of it, anyway.

I found the shadow of all that hanging over this week to be a bit debilitating.  I allowed it to stifle my creativity somewhat, I think.  The good thing about feeling beholden to this project is that I have to just get over that, make a choice, and commit to it, even if, in retrospect, it turns out to be not the best choice.  It occurs to me that often, when doing a play, I have so much time to create a character that sometimes I sit back and wait for inspiration to come, then I’ll make some choices.  And there’s some value in that, when it works, but I often look back and reflect on the time I wasted.  It’s easier to be passive and hope/wait for inspiration, but often what happens is that it gets late in the game, and I find myself in the same situation that I am in now.  I have to pick a direction and committee to it; otherwise I’m standing in the room when the time-bomb goes off.

So, after waffling back and forth about what character to do next, I decided to scrap the two ideas I had previously come up with (for now) and go with something new, that might allow me to do some shooting while in D.C.  In other words, there is to be an element of improv to this project that I had not anticipated: to not only improvise within the confines of a character, but sometimes I’ll need the willingness to improvise when it comes to choosing the character, depending on the given circumstances.  Discovery!  And a fun one, too!

Now, it does bring in a new set of fears, as in “but but but I haven’t spent a whole week thinking about this character,”  “I haven’t practiced his voice, his walk,” etc. etc.  Well that’s true, and maybe the final product won’t be as polished, interesting, or nuanced as if I had… or maybe it will be.  I have to keep reminding myself, though, that this is a PROCESS-ORIENTED (not product-oriented) experiment.  Maybe this week will suck and I’ll say, “Right, I won’t be trying that again.”  Or, maybe I’ll say, “Hmm, some of that really worked.  What can I learn from it and apply going forward?”

Perhaps I’m going on for too long about this, as I may be the only one who’s interested in this element, but I’m on a 4.5 hour bus ride with wireless internet, so I’ve got some time to ponder.

-BR  4.4.09  10.39am  (on a bus to DC)

~ by 50in50 on April 4, 2009.

3 Responses to “On a Second Beginning”

  1. Hey Mr. Rose, I watched your second video, and then read your posts. I’m by no means any critic of any sort, but I often like to think I’m not ‘tarded and that I can sometimes flesh out interesting opinions and constructive things to say…

    With regards to your Mr. T. video… I thought it was clever and had a good amount of humor, while also managing to maintain, overall, a level of seriousness that you most likely intended. There were definitely instances where I thought “yeeeaahhhh it’s a guy in front of a camera trying to please an audience”… but I was also surprised at the sense of…Believability? that I got when watching. I was especially impressed with the end. It was an end I didn’t see coming. Not in the “man that was random and meaningless” sort of way, more like, I suppose I was predicting it to end on a forced-feeling comedic note, simply because of the time ellapsed between humorous scenes.. but that expectation was delightfully fulfilled. Instead the ending showed growth in a character that I, the viewer, had put 4 minutes of my life into, and had begun to care about (as much as one might be able to in 4 minutes). It probably also struck some personal emotional chords that I could definitely relate too, but that doesn’t help you much.

    Also, in response to the contents of this post (On a Second Beginning), I wanted to say you are definitely not alone in your waffleyness. And I don’t just mean that I too love my syrup sponges. I myself have many an encounter with the issue faced by Chris Walken in that music video, you know. “You can go with this, or you can go with that”. I use the metaphor of playing Burnout, that racing videogame, though. I can dodge the oncoming traffic by swerving either right, or by swerving left. But if I don’t make up my mind, and I simply waffle, boom. I’m back in 8th place.

    I’m also very impressed with your journey to grow and learn and the obvious commitment you made (and make each day you continue this experiment/project/show). I’m on my own journey, but I think at the moment I’ve sort of slowed down… So I’ve gotta start up my engine again and find something that works for me (as much as I love improv).

    Sweet dreams, from Yokohama.

    P.S. I liked and voted for both your contest videos (a couple of times each. dunno if it counts more than one, but, didn’t hurt).

  2. Yeah it’s late and I haven’t used english in a while, but essentially I was trying to say I enjoyed your film and to keep up the good work lol.

    One important mistake to fix though is, in the 2nd paragraph towards the end instead of “fulfilled” it should say “unfulfilled”… or whatever makes sense in english.


  3. I was especially impressed with the end. It was an end I didn’t see coming.

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