A Film/Audio-Visual Installation/DVD/Web Transmission Project. A full exposition of the theoretical/aesthetic agenda behind this project is in development. These are simply the ground rules. The final work will be created from these cuts.
Each number will be a cut, taken from life, edited as each filmmaker sees fit. No effects can be applied to an individual cut beyond basic color/gamma adjustment or grain. Sound can be discontinuous within the cut, but must be a ‘field recording’ from life. No music is permitted, unless that music is captured as diegetic sound within the cut (for example the singing of a homeless man on the street, or the noise from a passing car stereo). Some of the films may be single takes. Others may be a montage of rapid, asynchronous elements. In the interests of unity, all contributors will restrict themselves to filming on digital cameras. The ‘look’ of the film is raw. No scripting, acting, forced lighting or other theatrical device is permitted.
The order in which we will make these films is non-sequential. Individual filmmakers will intially be ascribed a number and proceed to make a clip/scene/montage. Once we have created six films, filmmakers can request a number to make a cut in reference to another. For example, if cut 02.07 is a scene of a window breaking, then X filmmaker may request that they create a cut preceding/following, so as to balance or juxtapose another image/scene against it.
All films are to be titled only with the number and then the full name of the filmmaker in brackets with no pseudonyms, e.g. 01.05 (Michael Andrés Ordoñez). By title we mean the name it is given on upload.
Each film will be a maximum of 1 minute 30 seconds. The minimum length of a cut is 25 seconds. Do not add credits to the cuts.
This sounds awesome, how did you conceptualize this, T?
ah…I just stopped thinking about manifestos and thought about how to work a project online which allowed everyone equal say within a framework. And I was looking at (http://www.paikstudios.com/) Nam June Paik’s installation work, and it occurred to me that a tapestry/shards of broken mirror/multi-screen broadcast concept might be key to an online project. But this is just how the framework functions- the actual finished film will be something else altogether… a working theoretical/artistic/political exposition will emerge later —and once that is done, everything will be clear. Stay tuned.
MAO…your first cut is 01.05 (Michael Andrés Ordoñez)
………………………………………………………………………..no deadline. sooner you get it done the better. we can only make a next round once the filmmakers have each made one film.
………………………………………………………………………..all rules are here.
………………………………………………………………………..be raw, like sandpaper on an open wound.
…………………………………………………………updates, revisions in rules. nov01/08.
it works better. mcluhan…ah it’s too academic.
this way, there’s a first statement and everything will now begin to fall into opposition or conflux with it.
the project will develop.
give me a negative thumb. I feel out of whack with all this relentless positivity.
Hmm, I’m interested in this. Do we each get a couple seconds?
no. Each cut uploaded will be a maximum of 1 minute 30 seconds. The minimum length of a cut is 25 seconds. must take it raw from life. in the accumulation of films, a narrative/theory will become apparent. there’s a web page in development for this project. more soon. it’ll make more sense.
if you’re really interested, message me …it will evolve over time.
—for the time being, let’s define this project as if it were coming from a mysterious school of filmmaking.
for now, let’s also imagine that this school has been given the not very exciting or glamorous name IMPROVISING A FILM BY NUMBERS.
The project outcome will be at least one film, and quite possibly many films in many different interpretations and formats.
The film(s) in either outcome will have been built out of shots made by different filmmakers. For the sake of aesthetic/style/unity and some sense of continuity, the film has been given some “rules” (an approach, nothing more). the most important of these rules is the one about content —what you can film and what you can’t.
>>>No scripting, acting, forced lighting or other theatrical device is permitted.
>>>Each number will be a cut, taken from life, edited as each filmmaker sees fit. No effects can be applied to an individual cut beyond basic color/gamma adjustment or grain. Sound can be discontinuous within the cut, but must be a ‘field recording’ from life. No music is permitted, unless that music is captured as diegetic sound within the cut (for example the singing of a homeless man on the street, or the noise from a passing car stereo). Some of the films may be single takes. Others may be a montage of rapid, asynchronous elements. In the interests of unity, all contributors will restrict themselves to filming on digital cameras. The ‘look’ of the film is raw.
to this I add the following…
1) you are encouraged to restrict yourself at least part of the time to low-end camcorders. if something needs an HD cam, do it. but try to keep in mind that most of the other filmmakers on this project will be using camcorders, because then they can film the world around them inconspicuously, without interrupting life. I have some designs for simple ‘hidden camera’ clothing and bag adaptions, which I will put up on the webpage soon. So you got no excuse for not going into the bar at 1am and filming the barstool hardcase.
2) Ideally we don’t want too many formats, as this will make things complex in the final stages, when it all gets put together. —when exporting cuts, make either a .mov or an .avi keep all cuts safe, backed up on drive or disc. you are responsible for your own cuts. if you lose them, you will be undermining the project for the others
This project is NOT Gonzo filmmaking. Because it implies that the personal life/outlook of the filmmaker be in someway exposed to light, it could be easy to see this project as some kind of Hunter S Thompson for web filmmakers. Don’t go there. Film outside of yourself. You, if you become a presence in your cuts, are just another human. Get past subjectivity as much as possible. Observe. Observe your environment and observe yourself filming your environment. There will be times when this is impossible, and those subjective cuts/moments will be stronger for the restraint that went around them.
The first words on the screen are V E R Y E A R L Y I N M Y L I F E I T W A S T O O L A T E
This is the first and only thematic guidance. You can interpret this as you want, react against it, take it literally, cut it up and feed it to the world as Soylent Green, I care not.
The words are simply there, at the very beginning of the film.
STAGE ONE. You are going to be working with other filmmakers with very different lives and styles and abilities and equipment, and so on, and you can’t do anything about that. Ultimately, the only content you control is your own own cuts, and that’s your life. All you can do is to look at the cuts of others as and when they are posted and respond, react, create parallel or juxtaposition, instinctively. Out of the 90% crap that you are going to film, you are looking for the 25seconds to minute and half that is excellent for each cut you submit.
Stage One is about filling in the blanks, creating a rough shape, and getting into the routine of making a cut and uploading it. from the early building blocks we can start to approach Stage Two, which is more complex. For now just film and PUSH.
I’m building a webpage where we can watch all the clips on one screen, and sorting out a dailymotion account to which I’ll give the password of all filmmakers involved. upload everything to there. next few days.
Man T, how can i count the ways to show love to thee:) just playing, but i am rolling and like you said it is not an easy thing to find a minute and 30 seconds. Having a blast trying to find the right images though, but i do have one thing that i want to confer with you, about maybe using a specific cilp that i got and i was thinkin of using it after the title screen unless you have a certain idea. i live in coral gables, fl and you can only imagine that i have alot of trees around me. But not like in the upper states like jersey and new york. Anyways i was driving and got some amazing views form putting the camera on the dash. I drive a mini so the front hood is very small and does not come out i the frame. So it feels like the camera is mounted on the hood. Anyways let me know how i can send you the clips and you can let me know what you think. Holla T:)
Kid you’ve been to miami? great, i’m working my way towards the beach. I’m working my way from west to east. The beach is to the southeastern part of the city. I live in what can be called the middle of miami. Plus i am right next to little havana so i have chollos in abundance. But thanks Kid for the useful advice. I’m assuming you’ve been to Mango’s. :) Hopefully you don’t party too hard:)
Information occassionally slips:o. Keep the six shooter loaded i am also near the famous calle ocho.
I like this idea and have re-read the rules. I was going to go for a concept, but with filming things as they are, it might to difficult to get my point across without a little manipulation and without going to skid row. I actually started to script something, but since that is a no-no I might have to do something different. Hmm, in the meantime I’ll have to figure out what to film. I like the stipulations, and it will be a different way of working.
Allison- skid row sounds good, though. I am about to post some updates. it’s the first stages that are inflexible. later on, things become more complex, but equally more conceptually free.
upload films to dailymotion.com-—————————————————————-www.dailymotion.com/0500GARAGE-—————————————————————-all contributors will get a passphrase for the account. if you haven’t received one in your message box by tonight (nov 3rd, mountain time USA), drop me a line and I’ll see to it.
sounds good. I usually make it downtown once or twice a week. Maybe we can compromise on Echo Park.
Daniel Strang is Antoine Doinel. Or vice versa. Depends on how you look at it.
Allison…compromise is the first step on the path to mortality :)
Nathan asked me about adding our own titles to our clips. Now here’s the thing. For now, don’t try to conceive a film in its entirety or it will go horribly wrong when it turns out to be nothing like your imagined idea. There are five stages to this project.
This is STAGE ONE.
You only get the rules for STAGE TWO when we have made 23 cuts.
STAGE TWO is completely different to STAGE ONE.
I worked this out very very carefully so that it would allow for pure democracy and creative freedom past a certain point.
For now, just make the cuts. Get the shots.
Don’t worry about quality, continuity or context. Don’t even think about it. You have to unlearn your filmmaker 101 handbook for this.
Dwell on the quote.
Now without screenplay and without actors or cinematography or set, find some shots that express something that springboards from the quote— can be abstract as you like.
I know you can do this. You are each unique. This is why you were handpicked for the project initially. I’m not pissing about. I have a lot of other film things I could be doing rather than this, but I stick with GARAGE/THEAUTEURS for one simple reason, which is best explained by a quote:
“Bop began innocently enough. The war had destroyed the big bands with entertainment taxes on dance floors, gasoline rationing, which ended bus travel, and shellac rationing, which made recording virtually impossible. Things were changing even more rapidly within the Afro-American culture; coming north en masse to enter the industrial system, more and more talented young blacks demanded to know why jazz, the black art, was putting money only in white pockets.
In 1941, Minton’s, a reasonably priced, out-of-the-way club on 118th Street in Harlem, hired pianist Teddy Hill to put together a house band. Especially on Monday, The Apollo Theater’s off-night, young musicians began to drop by and jam, including Kenny ‘Klook’ Clarke on drums, John Birks ‘Dizzy’ Gillespie on trumpet, and Bud Powell on piano. By 1942 two more men had sat down to stay, a mystic goateed and shaded genius on piano named Thelonius Sphere Monk and a smiling extrovert named Charles ‘Bird’ Parker on saxophone. Later additions included Max Roach and Miles Davis.
With no white publicity, they had the space to think, and the stage at Minton’s became a scene of extraordinary creative experimentation; the jams weren’t competitive, but shared attempts to make music more than entertainment, to make it express what the times were about….
As Max Roach would later comment -We kept reading about rockets and jets and radar, and you can’t play 4/4 music after that”
from ‘Desolate Angel (Visions in a World of Mushroom Clouds)’, Dennis McNally’
Think about that in terms of filmmaking. Think about it in terms of The Auteurs, cool little film joint quietly growing in a corner of the web. Think about it terms of NOW.
Who are you? Big talker or serious talent? You’re a screenwriter? OK but no screenplay: so use your ears and follow them to catch that amazing piece of dialogue overheard on a street corner. You’re a director? Then use instinct to frame your random camerawork, to edit on the fly, turn camera on/turn camera off.
Stop thinking. Carry a camera with you all the time, like a concealed weapon. Make or die.
Stop thinking is right T. Walking and not letting the world notice you. It sounds weird and feels odd, but when you commit and you focus on what you look to catch life, and things tend to happen. It’s different for us all, but that is what we look forward to. Seeing how each of us look at things, how environment affects how we view it. Sounds simple enough but each of us brings something unique like T said. Our many passage ways can make Garage limitless. Don’t worry Kid i got my own “Asso nel foro come dicono in america!” Don Tomassino(Eli Wallach) -The Godfather Part 3
carry a camera with me at all times. ok.
Lu, you said it exactly. Do what Lu said. I use too many words.
I forgot my camera. I will charge it then bring it with me tomorrow. In the meantime, I deserve thumbs down.
I brought my camera today. Here we go.
the upload account for all clips is at www.dailymotion.com/0500GARAGE
if you need a login and password, message me
look I get what you are saying but…the quote at the top is just a starting point and I DOUBT VERY MUCH IT WILL MAKE IT TO FINAL EDIT. This project, although it begins as a tapestry, ends up looking like something very very different at the end. All the creative freedom you seek is in stage two. For now, these cuts, without any form of credit or writing or imposition of interpretation on them are the foundation. You don’t yet know what will transpire when we have a multitude. Don’t try to nail the animal’s feet before it has walked five paces.
It’s way to early (with four cuts up) to vote on anything. When we have about 50, then we can start to see.
EXACTLY:) And it’s going to look good!