Reflections on Class

•May 21, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Reflections on Class is my last post on this blog. I can sincerely say that I enjoyed this class greatly. I met some great people and learned a lot during the time we spent together. I had the opportunity to be part of some very exciting projects, be challenged and explore my creative side.

This was a very hands on class, where we as students had the opportunity to try things out and experiment. In addition, it was possible to understand how evolving technology has shaped the way we communicate, the way we see the world and the way we see ourselves as active media makers.

The internet makes things so simple and accessible these days. Anyone with a computer and an internet service can send messages, write about whatever they want, publish it, share it. And people love to share all kinds of media, news, pictures, videos, basically anything, in a very simple way.

There were fun moments and sad, shocking ones. Documentary filmmakers are really courageous and I admire that a lot. We were presented people with passion for what they believe in, trying to use their talents for good causes. Such a dedication is inspirational.

The many different tasks we were assigned really gave me an insight of all the different aspects of media making. I am grateful for having the opportunity to go to class and learn so much.

Extra Credit – Interview

•May 16, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Interview Assignment

I am interviewing David Goldberg, President and CVO (Chief Voice Over) of Waterworx Digital, from Long Island, New York. He has decades of experience and in 2004 was awarded the 40 Under 40, a prestigious award presented to young business leaders. Below is our interview transcript.

Adriana- Dave, did you envision yourself, at 15, starting out as a DJ, having your own business? Did you already know what you wanted to do from an early age?
David Goldberg- Both of my grandfathers and my father had owned their own businesses, so I guess you could say that I was destined to own my own business as well. I used to go to work with my father very often and liked that there was nobody there to tell him what to do! I wasn’t sure of what I wanted to do, but I knew it would involve creativity – possibly something with music.

Adriana- What are some of the things you do at Waterworx Digital? What are you most proud of?
David Goldberg – Digital Waterworx began in 1993 as a music production company. However, I realized very quickly that the music production business was not that lucrative – that is unless you’re lucky enough strike it rich by working with a celebrity. Since I had no contacts in those areas, I needed to search for alternative services to offer. I’m most proud of the fact that my InfoHold business succeeded the way it did.

Adriana- You started working with professional-level electronic musical equipment in 1987. How much has changed since then in terms of technology? (Has your job become easier or harder, more possibilities, more competition…)
David Goldberg – The industry has changed so much, however, the biggest change came right at the time I was introduced to it in the late 80’s. The migration of hardware to more computer-based systems was the most important change. People went from editing audio and video on tape (linear) to performing those functions on computer-based hardware and software (non-linear). As an example, in college I edited a film I had shot by physically cutting the film with a blade. In 1991 I edited my first piece of audio using a device called the SoundLink. The sound was stored completely on hard drives. Today, we take that stuff from granted, but 20 years ago it truly was revolutionary stuff.

Adriana – The equipment in your studio is amazing. How long did it take for you to know what’s best and build your studio?
David Goldberg – The debate about equipment is ongoing. Do you have to have the latest and greatest tools in order to be considered professional and remain competitive? Some feel it is necessary, but I don’t believe that. I think it has more to do with being able to produce a high quality product efficiently, skillfully, and delivering a final production that meets your client’s needs and hopefully exceeds their expectations. It may help to have the best stuff out there, but I think as long as you know what you’re doing and you know how to get the most from your gear, you can achieve those results. I often make the analogy that when Andrea Bocelli performs, he sings through a $2,000 microphone and obviously he sound simply amazing. However, if he were to sing through a $100 microphone – or no microphone at all – he would probably still sound better than most other tenors.

Adriana -What skills do you consider necessary to make it in this business?
David Goldberg – Most importantly, you need to be willing to take chances and be adventurous. Don’t limit yourself to what the owner’s manual says you can do. Experiment. Make mistakes. Sometimes the most amazing things come from pressing the wrong button, or accidentaly typing an extra zero. What that occurs, we call them “happy accidents” and we hopefully remember what we did to get the results so we can replicate them in the future. It’s also really important to align yourself with like-minded people. Sometimes they can be your employees, other times it can be your industry colleagues. Network. Go to industry events. Meet and become friendly with others in your industry. Don’t come off being pretentious.

Adriana- After all these successful years, is there still anything you want to accomplish? Any plans for the future?
David Goldberg – Of course. I still feel like I’ve only begun to scratch the surface. My close range plans involve expanding to a larger production facility that would allow us to attract bigger projects. I also feel that if you change and upgrade your environment, your clients view that as an immeasurable sign of success.

Adriana- What advice would you give to someone who’s starting, or to someone thinking about a career in Media?
David Goldberg – First and foremost, follow your dreams. If you can’t imagine yourself being successful, you won’t. Take chances and risks, both in business and creativity. Work for free in the beginning. Offer your services to a charity or non-profit. It’s a great way to showcase your work and also a fantastic opportunity to meet successful business people. Speaking of meeting people – join an industry association and rub elbows with people who are doing what you want to do. It will raise your aspirations to be like them. It’s always better to be around people that you look up to and admire. It subconsciously makes you want to be like them, which is a good thing. In my first year of business I joined a networking organization. It was made up of business owners and decision makers at companies. I was a good 20 years younger than most of the members who were highly successful in their respective fields of real estate, banking, law, medicine and sales. Many of them appreciated the fact that I was so young and eager to grow my business that they offered my opportunities to do business with their companies, and also made introductions to their clients on my behalf.

Adriana- These are all great answers, really good advice. I would like to thank Mr. David Goldberg so much for accepting my invitation and doing this interview.

For those who wish to learn more about David Goldberg and Digital Waterworx, please access his website: http://www.waterworx.com.

Hyper Haiku Assignment

•May 12, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Haiku Poem

Visit to the Museum of The Moving Image

•April 26, 2012 • Leave a Comment

The Behind the Screen Exhibition was the one I chose to visit.  I was able to see all the sections of the exhibit, from actors’s portraits right at the entrance, to the directors, screenwriters, production sets, costumes,  fan magazines, early inventions, and very old equipment like photo cameras, video cameras, television sets, etc.

The message at the beginning says that any motion picture, TV show or digital  entertainment  is a product of a collaborative process.  The exhibition shows exactly that, all the aspects and professionals involved in the process.  It’s actually possible to access  a list with all the different kinds of jobs behind the scenes.  In addition, the visitor can explore  how the evolution in technologies has changed the way these pieces of entertainment have been created.

One of the most interesting things I came across was some of the 100 head sculptures that were created for the movie Starman, where an alien grows from infancy to adulthood overnight.  I was fascinated by the laborious process, these days this would be done digitally.  The transformation lasts only 5 seconds on screen, so the artists’ dedication is beyond remarkable.

After the visit I felt like I understood better how the  industry has developed.  I value even more the effort and the hard work it takes in order to make things happen.  From still images to moving images, there were some crucial contributions from so many people.   It was such an enriching experience.  There is so much work behind the screen, and I believe it is very important to highlight everyone’s contribution.   A lot has changed throughout the decades,  but the passion motivating all these professionals who make it happen, has remained absolutely fabulous.

In Camera Assignment

•April 21, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Traffic NYC

Kony 2012

•April 10, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Kony 2012 is the title of a 30 minute film about Joseph Kony, a warlord, leader of the LRA, the Lord’s Resistance Army, in Central Africa.  Kony is wanted for crimes against humanity.  He is accused among other things of abducting, abusing and forcing children to become soldiers in his army.  You can watch it below:

This video and a massive publicity campaign is part of the “Stop Kony” movement, created by Invisible Children Inc., a non-profit organization founded in 2004 by filmmakers Jason Russel, Bobby Bailey and Laren Poole, with Jason Russell being the most prominent of the three, having appeared largely on screen with his son.  He is also known now for his public meltdown on March 16th.

They launched the campaign on March 5th 2012.  It has since gone viral, in part because of social media, in part because of the celebrities that got involved, a mix of both things, and the extreme efforts the filmmakers made in order to get noticed and bring attention to the issue.  Their goal is to capture Kony and arrest him by the end of 2012.

This is one of the images they are using for the campaign.  It is a typical revolution style poster.

 

This campaign has attracted both sympathizers and critics, more the former than the latter.  Critics have been questioning Invisible Children Inc.’s financials, and the actual campaign.  They say that it was a few years ago that Kony was committing these crimes, and that the government knew about it and did nothing.  They respond to these accusations on their website: http://www.invisiblechildren.com/

This is an extraordinarily successful campaign, there is no denial.  The images of young people getting together for a cause, the drama involving children which affects people in their cores, the efforts to make people watch the video, know more about the issue and do things now, as they repeat many times over on the video, are all exciting and even joyful.

They call and encourage people to act by sharing and donating.  They are bringing serious issues to the knowledge of young people and I believe that this is a positive.   I  really hope this can change reality and bring justice to those who have suffered in the hands of criminals like Kony.  Let’s pay attention so that this does not became a seasonal  fad that will only sell bracelets and get donations that go to someone’s pocket and helps nobody.

Panorama Exercise

•April 3, 2012 • Leave a Comment