Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cinequest is back (2009)!

Weird. I thought I blogged about my Cinequest experiences from last year but I realized I actually wrote it in a journal and NOT online! Well, this year, it's going to this blog. For those that are unfamiliar with it, Cinequest is a widely known Film Festival based in the Silicon Valley. The organization utilize The California Theatre, Camera 12 and San Jose Repertory Theatre to host the films and local establishments for various uses.

Last year I spent most of it wandering around, watching films and just talking to some filmmakers. I was mostly a passive observer. At the closing night gala I told myself, "next year, I'm going to be involved in Cinequest somehow", lo and behold, I'm fulfilling that by being part of a media team that's diving into the festival with a show called "Inside Cinequest", appropriate, no? I mentioned in the previous entry that I was fortunate enough to participate in Adobe Youth Voices and here is a wonderful clip from that event (can you spot me in it?):

Inside Cinequest has a host of exceptionally talented people behind it. Among them are Sinohui Hinojosa, Thomas Koch and Amy Puzia from Emerging Artist. A fellow 48hr filmmaker (and San Jose coordinator), Vincent Lowe and a slew of other great folks. As an aside, there's a terrific web series you have to check out, especially if you love theatre! It's called EXIT STAGE LEFT created by Sinohui. I highly recommend it. In fact, keep an eye out for future bloggage. Following is the latest episode of Inside Cinequest:

At any rate, I asked myself recently, "What am I looking forward to to this year's Cinequest (19)?". My head flooded with answers, each one of them valid and worthy of my best efforts. Here are some of them:

  • Meet new people and reinforce friendships from prior networking
  • Watch at least 10 films
  • Work work work work work (yes, work)
  • Fulfilling my commitments with Inside Cinequest
  • Earn some exposure with filmmakers, local and out of towners alike
I'd like to toss a shout out to my friend and Cinequest alum, Alejandro Adams. His film, "CANARY" is featured this year (some of you may remember "Around the Bay" from Cinequest 18). Some of you may also remember him from previous entries regarding BABNIK. Show dates will be March 1st 6:30p and March 7th 4p. Both shows will be hosted in San Jose Repertory Theatre. You can purchase your tickets HERE.

Don't forget to bookmark or RSS for updates on the Cinequest romp.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Adobe Youth Voices

Today I had the privilege of attending one of Adobe Youth Voice's workshops. I was originally asked to help present, interview and document the event but as the day progressed so did my involvement. Just a quick background for those I haven't told already, I'm part of a media team lead by Vincent Lowe and I am assisting in helping document (ala behind the scenes glimpse) Cinequest.

Today's planned format went straight out the window, and in the end, I think it turned out a better experience for me, and I'm sure for many others. I ran into some familiar filmmakers from San Jose State University too, so that was neat. Richard from Barkada Inc was also in attendance because, as coincidences would have it, he was assigned to work the event!

It was heaps of fun learning about what the young participates found inspiring and what they wanted to get out of the program. Part of AYV's goal is to make sure their voices/ideas are heard and what better way than through the visual medium, right? Right. When formal introductions concluded, we went straight to work. The first thing that caught my attention was that they provided the students/participants with Canon HV30's! And if you've kept up with my blog, you should know that that's the exact camera I own! BONUS: their editing software, obviously, is adobe premiere, so I had some familiarity with the evident trouble(s) the premiere pro has with capturing hdv footage from a canon hv30.

I felt like 'Johnny-on-the-spot' with the quick fixes. But the real credit goes out to those that spent hours assisting with creating something out of nothing by incorporating years of experience to help guide these students through tasks. Who knows, there could be another Speilberg in the bunch, right? It could happen, why not? At some point I assisted with a trio of student's documentary project. I helped them conduct the interview and offered suggestions on how to always keep an eye and ear out for footage that you didn't mean to capture initially because there could be a gem in them. More is better, in the case of documentaries. I hope their project ends up being something they can look back on and know that they'll always remember the small lessons it taught them.

Well, that was my day at Adobe. I left with a smile, experience in my pockets, new friends and a slew of free Adobe software training books. Chhhheeeeehhoooooo!