Come Fly the Psychedelic Skies

I miss getting into my zone. It rarely happens. When I sneak my way in it’s a bit like this: I’m in the edit bay, something right is happening and I’m just trying to keep up with it. One idea stacks on another and another and they keep flowing – There’s an invisible spring somewhere and an invisible levee has broken and I don’t want sleep, food, or toilets to get in the way. It’s been a while. I found the zone again this weekend.

3 elements: 1. Seattle traffic in focus; 2. Seattle traffic out of focus; 3. Close-ups of VERY out-of-focus traffic and city lights.

I may have also discovered a new passion – Visual accompaniment to live music. This first video will be playing at Shambhala fest at the RockPit stage. I hope to do many more. DJs, musicmakers, party-throwers, and friends and allies of all of the above, hit me up! Maybe at some point I’ll have this stuff available through an online store, but for now it’s just in the kitchen.

The idea is this: I create the video to random music using only footage that has come through the camera in my hands. I allow the chaos in the footage to do its thing regarding rhythm. Inevitably there will be pattern overlaps with almost any music you play it with. What I hope to have is something like an album full of song-length clips, each done in a single sitting. I have a nigh-bottomless well of nutrient-rich video content from years of taking my camera everywhere and NOT editing it down, and here it is at last: A place for it. Old sleeping lovelies dusted and allowed to breathe again.

2 elements: 1. Seagull in front of Seattle from Bainbridge ferry; 2. Silk dancer.

It glitters and it’s grimy. And it’s quick – 15 minutes of the good stuff took me about 2 days in the kitchen. I keep everything in Final Cut and I keep the effects simple to manage – color correction and luma keys are all I use. It’s easy in post because the footage I begin with is properly crazy. Mostly because I’m crazy, but I’m happy to have somewhere this footage can go. Keep in mind everything moves – the lights twinkle, the raindrops trickle, the smoking plane tumbles and the silk dancer flies. It’s designed to be large and bright and accompanied by loud music that people move to. If people at the show stop dancing and stare at the screens for a while, I may consider the video TOO successful, but nonetheless, a glee-squirm is a good feel.

3 elements: 1. Out-of-focus traffic lights through foggy window; 2. trickling rainwater on window; 3. Hand-smudgy cityscape timelapse.

Once Shambhala’s underway I’ll put together a short version of this reel and publish it for the enjoyment of all. Just add music. Now if anyone’s going to be at Shambhala, stop by RockPit at night and take some photos for me.

3 elements: 1. The crashing flying-machine show; 2. Crows migrating over the city; 3. Maya chilling in the forest.

About Thom

So young, so angry.

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