June, 2006 Archives

25
Jun

It Is Simple

by Pj in Random

PamFriends.jpgBY PAMELA BOWMAN, MESA, ARIZONA, USA – This last week-end the MCC film crew had the opportunity to participate in some Zambian culture. As a result of Jabbes’ sons death, the Zambian community got together to show emotional support to our friend Jabbes. We visited together, We broke bread together. We prayed together. We offered words of condolences and even financial support for the cost of the funeral expenses. It was apparent to me the joy the Zambian community found in each other’s company. It was also comforting to feel their acceptance of us in their home and hearts. They extended their hands of friendship to us and I hope they felt our hands and hearts reaching out as well. It was simple. It was pure.

I think that is one of the greatest benefits of working together, building friendships. You get to know each other and you find out how easy it is to like other people once you understand why they are the way they are. As the crew becomes more familiar with each other, well there is a lot of yanking of each other’s chains. It is fun. I keep reminding Shawn not to take my picture, that the story is not about me. So of course I find his lens in my face all the time. Jabbes tells me that my daughter is “very pretty” and that she must get it from her father! I tease Cyndi about, well… everything! She is constantly telling me that I am a worry wart! Me? Carlos told me he ran over my camera on Saturday, both ways! I think laughter cements the bonds of friendship. It is simple.

A song in the play “Wicked” goes, “I’ve heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason, bringing something we must learn. We are led to those who will help us grow- if we let them and we help them in return.” I think that is true. I have had good friends my entire life. Life long friends. Friends who through time have shown loyalty and honesty and understanding. I cherish those friends and always will. I have also had acquaintances that proved to be less then I need in a friend, but I still have learned from them. Some life lessons have been taught to me by people who I don’t want to even remember meeting or knowing. So I choose to forget the person, but remember the lesson. It is simple.

This life experience is teaching us all so much about the art of film. But the real lessons are the human relations that are being acted out at every meeting, at every training, at every event. Cyndi and Jabbes have come into our lives for a reason. They bring to us something we must learn. We have been led to those who will help us grow and maybe we can help them in return. That really is what life should be about, helping one another, loving one another. I think that is called charity. It really is that simple.

11
Jun

Diet Pepsi anyone?

by Pj in Random

BY PAMELA BOWMAN, MESA ARIZONA USA – Who is Cyndi Greening and when did she lose her mind? At first, she teaches her classes with what can be described as the mother of Sammy the Squirrel in overdrive. (Over the Hedge!) She goes through computer programs with speed and agility and somehow it works because we all get it! Then she tells our class that we can, if we want, be part of a team that produces, films and edits “spotlights” for potentially 90 departments at Mesa Community College. This would mean we could get on-the-sight experience with making a short movie, working on a real crew and then seeing our work produced through the college website. Excuse me, but what film student wouldn’t want that experience?

Then things get interesting. What about a spotlight in Spanish and Cantonese? Oh and by the way, “would any of you be interested in going to Africa this summer and working on a feature film and a documentary? Email me a letter why I should choose you to come…. Now you can see when you have a shaky clip or a crappy cinematographer, how “Shake” can make your clip solid as a rock…Who’s tapping? Knock it off! Bring up Motion. I want to show you..Anyone want to go get me a diet Pepsi?” Diet Pepsi.jpg

Over the river and through the woods to Africa we go… It is more like over the rapids and through the trenches but what the heck! What housebound new mother hasn’t ventured out with her newborn baby to a restaurant or a movie and been totally embarrassed that her child, the apple of her eye, hasn’t learned how to behave in public. The good mother returns home and begins teaching her child how to be a productive citizen in society. First lesson? No whining! As a crew representing MCC, Cyndi is teaching us how to be productive contributors in the world of film. She is taking not one child, but 16! She is insane, but like all good children we will not have her committed. At least not until after Africa! We will behave. We will learn. We will not embarrass our Mum. Yea right! She has to sleep sometime!

Hopefully, after careful training and lots and lots and lots of practicing, she can sit in the audience with a smile on her lips and moisture fogging her glasses as she watches the finished piece performed perfectly at our movie screen at Sundance! Until then, any one have a diet Pepsi?

5
Jun

Determined Souls

by Pj in Random

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. — T.S. Eliot

BY PAMELA BOWMAN, MESA, ARIZONA, USA -I can only speak for myself. I never thought I could go this far, but I was willing to risk going too far! The time is getting shorter and our group is getting tighter. Our goals are becoming more focused. We are a small group of determined souls. We are committed to telling the story and telling it beautifully. I believe we each understand the significance of this film about Africa and for Africa. This film will give a voice to Africa. Not the war torn political driven drowning shout of small and greedy men. This will be a small quiet respectful voice. It will demand the world’s attention because it will speak the truth. It will speak from the souls of Zambians who believe in family and unity and love. It will touch the hearts of the world as they discover the Africa that has not been portrayed in our nightly news.

We have just a few short weeks before production starts on the feature film. The documentary began weeks ago. We are learning every day from those who have gone before. We are wise like that. We are also smart. We are learning from our own experiences. We are also naïve. All growth is a leap in the dark, a spontaneous unpremeditated act without the benefit of experience. Henry Miller

We have the leadership to guide us. We have the vision to direct us. We have the desire to motivate us. We have each other to lean on, yell at, learn from and depend on. We are a small group of determined souls. We will succeed.

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