Thursday, January 18, 2007

Craft Services made me Blog again...

Hello all...it's been some time...and I apologize.

A lot has happened since my last blog. I finished another semester of school and started my final semester at ASU West. Now, I specify "West" because my specific degree is only offered at the West campus and from what I have gathered, there is some animosity between the West campus and the "Main" campus (in Tempe.) But, I digress.

To graduate with my degree (Interdisciplinary Arts and Performance) a student must either do a senior project or do an internship. After a crazy previous semester full of many projects, I figured I would get some "real world" experience, build a resume and maybe get my foot in the door.

My degree concentration is Media Arts so I have many options for an internship. I know the term "media" seems a little vague...and it is... I could have worked at one of the many TV station in Phoenix (sorry Telemundo, I forgot to respond to your email) and I was talking with the Heard Museum about interning in their Graphic Design department. I just didn't want to do some "go-fer" job...so I started looking for Film and Production jobs. I'm really interested in film (another vague term...I know) and film editing (not as vague) so I started looking around. I found a place called Art Gecko but they weren't offering any internships. Thankfully, while telling me they didn't want my free work, they told me that a placed called Great Scott Productions might be able to help me...or me help them...whatever...

Several phone calls, a tour of the facilities, a 200 gallon pool filled with Nickelodeon Gak*
and I was their new intern. Great Scott is...great because they film TV shows, Commercials, record the automated menus that you encounter when you call a company and just want to talk to a human, lots of interesting stuff. It also doesn't hurt that my favorite movies are Back to the Future and "Great Scott" was shouted by Doc numerous times...[clears throat in silence]...anyways...

My first experience as an intern was shooting a commercial for CSK Auto, or for your Phoenicians, Checker Auto. My job was to hold/man/operate the Scripboy which keeps track of the time code for the film/tape. I documented when each shot or take starts and what is happening; which scene it is and a brief description. At first, I must admit that I was nervous. The Scripboy is mostly for the editor; it assists the editor in knowing where a scene is on the tape and which take was the best. Having done many (meaning 3) short films, I can say that knowing when your best take was on tape greatly helps in the editing process...I don't have a Scriptboy...I'm a worthless husk of a man.

On top of the Scriptboy, I got to be a stand in for shots. When the crew set up a new shot, I was asked to stand in for the talent (aka: paid actors) while the crew adjusted camera placement and lighting. I learned a lot about lighting from the shoot. Having done a few (meaning 3) short films, I know that lighting can make or break a scene. I also got to be in a couple shots. My job was to walk by the camera at the beginning of scenes to make the scenes more real...how this makes the scenes look more real, I'll never know...I'm just a senior. And by "walk by the camera," I mean I literally walked right in front of the camera after the director yells "Action!" If this part makes it to the final commercial, my sideburns will live on forever.

Now, I know, at this part of the story you are all thinking, "My gosh, I gotta get in contact with this guy! He's really getting connected in the Biz!" First of all, stop calling it "the biz" and second of all, I know, it's pretty exciting.

The greatest part of it all was something called "Craft Services." This is a table(s) usually set up at shoots that has drinks and food...for free...for the crew. This is one of the greatest, no, let me correct myself, THE greatest invention of the 21st Century. As a "worker" on the set, I can visit this table when I want to and get my nosh** on. Splendid.

Well, that's all for now. I will try to keep this Blog going and fill you in with all my many adventures in internship.

Next blog will be titled "We've Got Your Game"

Laterz,
Shawn


*While taking my tour of Great Scott's facilities, I visited one of their sound stages. They were shooting a commercial for Nickelodeon where someone jumps into a pool that contains that crap that many children (including me) bought and were told not to eat. Click on the original link.

**Maybe one of my more ridiculous word usages and links.

7 comments:

Nicole T said...

you are so very entertaining! I know Great Scott will love you!

Aaron said...

may craft services be bountiful this semester, my friend. and, may you become an extra in many a commercial, thereby sealing your fate in phoenix commercial lore...along with carissa allen's (good god, that's weird to say) infamous maricopa county department of corrections masterpiece...

linda t said...

SHAWN!!!
WOW!! I am in AWE!!! You ROCK!
Really, I am blown away... what a cool opportunity to get your foot in the door... they will see what a creative, responsible, integris and TALENTED young man you are!
YOU ARE!
And I couldn't be more proud of you Shawn!

ATS said...

I totally agree ... Craft services is THE BEST THING EVER!!! One of my fondest memories pf being on TV.

miranda said...

I love gak!!!

miranda said...

You are now on my blog link list!!! I even mentioned you in the main blogging part... yay!

NanAZ said...

Sounds like a great time! I know a guy who is a chef for the movie biz in L.A. and is an amazing cook. He goes on location all over the place and makes all the food for the crew and the stars for films.

He made chocolate chicken for us once and it was AWESOME!!!!