by Phil Warren
Well, April is finished. Easter, my birthday, and a slew of artistic ventures have come and gone. Here’s a recap of what happened:
Surprisingly Positive Consequences:
- I had my first “real” showing in an artistic venue! Well, kind of. Thanks to a flash mob, my stencils of “Keep Calm and Urinate” were proudly displayed in some “very small galleries” at the Brewery Art Walk in Los Angeles. It turned out these small galleries were Port-O-Potties, but let’s focus on the positive aspects: People saw my art while not wearing any pants!
- I shot and directed my first documentary short- which will ultimately emerge as a short internet commercial on Perez Hilton’s fashion blog, cocoperez – In doing so I met the LOVELY pop star Skyler Stonestreet and got to work with a very dear friend and insanely talented latex designer, Abigail Greydanus.
- I wrote, co-directed, and played the lead role in “Silver Lake”, a piece that will later be incorporated in the feature film “Project Los Angeles”.
- I experienced moments of catharsis and fulfillment that I did not know a human was capable of feeling. Photographing a panorama of Los Angeles from the burnt down ruins of The White City after a 16 mile hike was… transcendent.
- I grew closer to already incredible friends. If any of my blog readers learn anything from this month’s challenge, it should be this: NOTHING PULLS PEOPLE TOGETHER LIKE THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF A LARGE ART PROJECT. Between the crew on my films and the friends who simply painted with me at art parties, our community grew and strengthened by leaps and bounds.
Slightly Negative Results
I. Am. Exhausted. The final project, the culmination of this month’s project, led to some of the most intense work I’ve ever done. Between the pre-production and the insane multi-tasking on set until 4 AM, I at points questioned if creating a film was something I could do while working a full time job “on the side”. Turns out it was!
Surprisingly… Surprising Consequences.
While this month’s challenge afforded me more amazing opportunities and brought me closer to friends than previous month’s, none of it felt that “new”. Whenever I sit down to make an art piece, it’s a “new” experience I suppose, so as an artist, I’m not sure it exactly stretched my comfort bubble. Which is why I ended up turning to film, a medium I’ve always been too intimidated by to tackle with the gusto it requires. That change in direction captured the point of this project more effectively, I believe. That being said, I’d say I “achieved” something far greater and more tangible than I thought I would in the course of The Brave New by creating “Silver Lake”, and I hope others felt as gratified as well!
So, Brave Newbies, what did you create? Are you ready to rediscover yourself in next month’s challenge: Old is The New New?
My friend Steve is producing a project called “Project Los Angeles”, which is a feature film composed of multiple shorts. Each short film details the trials, triumphs, and on occasion, entertaining minutia of various neighborhoods in Los Angeles. He’s asked a handful of directors to create these shorts about their neighborhoods, giving each section of the final product a unique and genuine feel. The finished product is an open love letter to the town we’ve become so intimate with.
This project has been in the works for a while, and Steve approached me about writing a project an embarrassing amount of time ago. I never quite found my motivation, however- that is, until today. When it hit me, I banged up a fictional narrative detailing the unique aspects of dating whilst mired in the counter culture of Silver Lake. I wrote the first draft entirely in one day.
Here’s a snippet from my screenplay, “Silver Lake”. I became the very stereotype I was decrying by writing this. And now I’m trapped in a self-referential meta loop of recursion. Basically, it’s like I’m in The House of Leaves, except there’s raping dickwolves.
Later, feeling refreshed, invigorated, and self-satisfied, I was watching Family Guy. Brian, cartoon dog and modern day prophet, uttered words that will stick with me for a while. “You are the Spalding Gray of crap.”
Note that I’m posting this retroactively. I’ll fill in highlights of the month of April throughout today.
Brave Newbie Writers
- No Weekend Left Behind An adventure group dedicated to ensuring that when the work week is done, the weekend lives up to it’s potential.
- The Eskhaton The life and times of Cub, an adventurer I respect blossoming with energy who sucks the marrow out of life.
- This Tumblr Will Change Your Life Part instruction manual, part therapy, part religious cult, part sheer anarchy, this is a day-to-day quest very similar to “This Book Will Change Your Life”