The Other Motion Picture: GIF

I've always wondered why filmmakers rarely use GIFs in their portfolios. You usually see embeded videos, which means it's up to the thumbnail for the respective video, the text description, and maybe a few captivating still images to entice a visitor to click the playhead. There's no guarantee that a visitor will actually view the original work in the way that it's intended to be viewed: as a video.

A GIF is a direct way of bringing a motion picture to a visitor. The responsibility is no longer in the hands of the visitor to click a button to watch your work. They get a taste through the GIF. A short snippet of motion. The GIF is a nice medium between a still image and a video. 

My films page now features all GIFs. I'm curious to see if others find it effective.

Red Tape Redesign

I've been redesigning and tweaking the site over the last few days. I wanted to share some thoughts behind the design.

Red Tape Banner

The first thing you'll notice is the new red tape banner. I was hunting for something in our equipment closet at Reel Works when I came across this specialty gaffe tape, which had this striking red color and a table to write roll and mag numbers, the production name, and other geeky film set things.

Previously, I had a basic red block with Helvetica text, but I thought using this tape would be a perfect way to capture that initial styling while also having a film production aesthetic.

In short, the red tape reminded me of the Yeezus album cover, while still being film related.

So I ripped off a piece of tape, put it on white paper, wrote my name, and scanned it.

Overall Look

I'm drawing inspiration from graphic designer websites and fashion. Most filmmaker websites tend to put the work in the forefront and neglect the surroundings. The more you see, the more they start looking the same. Sleek cookie-cutter templates with gorgeous looking work. I wanted to create a space that allows the work to take center stage. Except I also want the stage to look nice.

The overall minimalist look and feel is pulled from the French clothing label A.P.C.

The GIF images with white Helvetica font was adopted into my films page.

apc_web.jpg
 

I'm really digging Frank Chimero's design. He creates a graphically pleasing, compartmentalized website that offers audiences a portal into his line of thinking, not only as a designer, but also to what books he reads and the music he listens to.

 

 

Chimero describes the philosophy design of his website as, "Inspired by the Eames house, the Eames House of Cards, and patchwork quilts." I like that. Still building my minimalist quilt, but at least I have a few patches up.

Short: Sharp Love, Sharp Kittens

Sorting through casting submissions can be an arduous process. To put it bluntly, there's an abundance of garbage out there. Lots of terrible short films, the awful web series, strange thesis films. But every once in awhile, there's an actor or actress who has been involved with a great project. Discovering these diamonds in the rough are what make the sorting process worth it. I recently came across one of those diamonds, a film called Sharp Love, Sharp Kittens - directed by Jon Sajetowski.

The short comedy tells the story of a working-class father who reunites with his estranged teenage daughter. The film has a quirky sense of humor that hovers into absurdist territory. It's refreshing because of its colorful cast of eccentric characters.

Tony (Joe Diomede), the working class father, is a shake-weight user and eats bologna and cheese quesadillas. His next door neighbor Jerry McJagger may be the best use of a shoulder strap baby carrier that I've ever seen in a film. All while poking fun at Brooklyn hipster culture.

A production side-note, I was happy to see the Astoria favorite Queens Kickshaw as a location.

Grab your bologna and cheese quesadilla and watch Sharp Love, Sharp Kittens above.