Musings & Pictures


Show’s About To Start…

I always intended for this blog to function as a mini-magazine and as such, I figured I should have a plan of attack. The titles in this proposed project slate are arranged in no particular order but they serve as a blueprint for words to come. In essence, you can expect a sample platter of literature, travel, photography, film, fashion, and music. Below, I divulge a bite-sized sneak peek of each of these articles. Enjoy!

1. A READING LIST In which I share a list of books that are currently sitting on the shelves of my modest little library. Also, let’s talk about the importance of reading, shall we? Not in lofty terms but rather, in more practical ones. There are certain books that have altered the way I see life, the way I operate, the way I relate to people. It’s astonishing to think that an artifact you can hold with one hand can change the way you live. I’d love to hear which authors have pitched in on your story.

2. A MONTH IN FILMS In which I devise a schedule of films you should watch because life will feel all the more complete if you do. A little Truffaut, a lot of Godard, some Jean Pierre Jeunet, Fellini, and Wes Anderson (for now). You’ll be amazed at how your perspective on things changes as you start to build a bank of images from these films. You start to catch nuances and poignancy in every day moments. Wait and see.

3. FAVORITE PHOTOGRAPHERS In which I share a list of some of my favorite photographers (hello, Annie!) as well as some good books to check out on their work. There’s nothing like sifting through a book of large print photographs, trust me.

4. FASHION IN MOTION In which I share the behind the scenes fashion films I shot during my internships for Civil Society Clothing and Asami Zenri Photography in LA. General commentary on fashion, the LA industry, and future plans peppered throughout.

5. POSTCARDS FROM EUROPE In which I share portraits I took during my recent travels to Germany, Italy, Switzerland, and Austria. Although these might be mere Iphone snaps, there is an unmistakeable dash of magic to each, I promise. Accompanied by a side of historical facts, traveler’s anecdotes, and general musings about the importance of culture.

6. THE INSIGHTERS In which I talk about an up and coming Mexican magazine that recently featured some of my work. They’ve got a great community over at The Insighters and they’re all about supporting up and comers. True darlings.

7. HOW FILMS ARE MADE: PT II In which I share what life as a film student is really like. It will be a curation of sketches, script excerpts, mood boards, screenshots, portraits, memos, story boards, shooting schedules, doodles, notes, and production photographs from the first film I ever produced and directed. These documents from CHECKMATE will illustrate the trials and tribulations that characterize the student production and will hopefully prove insightful to those with an interest in independent filmmaking.

8. WORDS TODAY In which I discuss a book I am currently reading. Perhaps a word here and there about who I would cast if I were adapting it into a movie and whether or not it would work as a fashion commercial.

9. A WORD FROM YOUR SPONSORS In which I interview myself so we can get to know each other a little better. Sample questions might be somewhere in the rage of: Which Harry Potter House do you belong to? When and why did you start drinking coffee? Why do you think Bavaria is so magical? When did you first start listening to Glenn Miller? Why did it take you almost 4 months to finish that book on the Hollywood studio system?  Why are you a fan of FC Bayern Munich? How come you’d rather drive a stick shift and not an automatic? Why are you so bad at golf? andBased on what have you named the cars you’ve owned? You know, just a potpourri of pertinent inquiries.

10. TUMBLING DOWN In which I share a curation of greatest hits from my Tumblr blog. There’s a lot to be said about Tumblr and what I deem “aspirational technology”. How does it affect the person you were, currently are, and aspire to be? Is a collection of images powerful enough to shape the way you think and act? Does your Tumblr reflect who you really are or who you’re dying to be? And lastly, let’s talk psychology. How are you affected by the images you feed yourself everyday? This and more coming soon.

11. WALL OF CLIPPINGS In which I share my newest inspiration collage once I touch base at my new apartment in the city of Angels. My last collage was comprised of archaeology, PT Anderson, classic VOGUE photographs, 1920’s bootleggers, and film strips. The forecast for this upcoming one is moodier, more simple. Perhaps a collection of black and whites. Remains to be seen.

12. TFT TUNES In which I share my Spotify playlist du jour and address its contents. I usually categorize my music based on moods and activities. Chill, Soulful, Photo Shoot, Brunch, Insomnia, Editing, Party, and Travel are all existing playlists on my Spotify account. I’ll also be looking forward to your suggestions! There’s nothing quite like finding a new favorite artist. I’m currently in my Shemekia Copeland phase.

13. BLOG ON BLOGGING In which I share what goes into putting a blog together (you know what I’m talking about). From comprising endless lists to doing graphic design and branding, blogging is quite the discipline. Hopefully this post will prove useful to aspiring ‘ggers but hopefully it also functions as a marketplace for ideas. Let’s talk about how you, and you, and you blog! We’ve got a supportive community here; it’s a beautiful thing.

That’s all I’ve got for now; I hope this project slate piques your interest. Now, I must leave you to get cracking on these posts. Happy Tuesday!

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Daily Photo Roll


Los Angeles Is a Time & a Place…

Talk about a long drumroll, huh? I apologize for the delay since my last post (what a jerk!). What can I say? Interning in Los Angeles, graduating from college, going to my brother’s wedding in Germany (he just got married and it’s a beautiful thing), and preparing myself for what the adults in my life call “the real world” has kept me plenty busy. But a friend of mine once told me that you always (yes, always) have got at least 5 minutes to spare for the people and things you love. So hi, here I am (ctd.)

Today, I’m sharing with you some pictures of my stay in LA. I’m moving back there on October 6th so I thought it appropriate to celebrate the fact by indulging in some Cali reminiscence. These snaps are nothing fancy, just some iphone evidence of my Angeleno shenanigans. Click on the pictures to get the full scoop behind each frame and look out for the occasional witty commentary which I so desperately tried to weasel in for your enjoyment. Up next (within the week, I promise) I will be sharing with you some cool fashion videos I got to shoot during my internships! That’s all I’ve got for now. Enjoy that Monday of yours,

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Flat Out Fashion

Meanwhile In LA

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 Angeleno Beauty …

It’s only been a few weeks and LA has already proven to live up to its sparkling reputation and has been keeping my rapt attention. It’s a city with a contagious beat, a city that demands a lot from you. It is populated by ambition, by hunger. Everyone you meet is working towards a very particular goal and the end result is quite stunning. The city never stops, the people never stop and I have gladly joined in step. Moving here has been an absolute dream, really. I’ve gotten to meet so many talented individuals that I can barely keep track of them. And this, I believe, is an appropriate segue into what today’s post is all about: Talented Folks. Not the blog itself. Rather, examples of people that inspire this site’s name and that inspire me.

Recently, I had the privilege of working with a talented group of individuals comprised of Angel V. Prado (photographer, hair stylist, and makeup artist) Zoraida Saray (hair stylist), Aliesh Pierce (makeup artist), Hanelle (model), and Albert Elizondo & Daniel Martinez (stylists). Angel invited me over to one of his beauty photo shoots to do a behinds-the-scenes feature of the occasion and I couldn’t be more grateful. Every one them is fantastic at their craft and I can’t wait to collaborate with them again. These screenshots are a sneak peak at the video feature, which will I’ll publish on TFT very soon. I’m excited. Very. So, what’s next? A behind-the-scenes video of LA-based brand CIVIL SOCIETY during LA Fashion Style Week. Whelp, that’s all I’ve got for now! Happy Monday,

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Int. Cinematic Stories

Making A Film

Fall Into The Clockwork…

It’s official!  I’ve landed in Los Angeles and I’m currently living at a place that is a literal stone throw’s away from the Warner Brothers lot (steady, my heart!) in Burbank. It is absolutely thrilling being so close to WB and many other famed studios. I have such respect for the film business and I look forward to soaking it all in. All this excitement has got me thinking about the things I have learned in my 3 1/2 years as a film student and a little reminiscing brought me back to my CHECKMATE days.

CHECKMATE is an action-adventure short film about a chess championship that transforms into an epic steampunk duel to the death between the finalists. Producing the film entailed everything from dumpster diving for metallic props to booking a local brewery to serve as one of the film’s sets. We held auditions for over 8 hours, handcrafted weapons and accessories, got a fencing instructor to choreograph sword duels, and spray painted any and everything that could pass as a steampunk gadget.

Here, you can see some early publicity portraits of our main characters, M. Emmeline Ashdown and Captain James Lockwood (played here by my good friends The Light Man and The Shakespearean). Producing CHECKMATE was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had as a film student and I look forward to many more of the like. Cara Shaffer, my co-producer, and I plan to release CHECKMATE online very soon but in the meantime you can check out our  Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr. Enjoy!

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Flat Out Fashion

Los Angeles Bound

California, here we come…

Ah, Los Angeles, California. I first heard about the UTLA program 3 1/2 years ago when I was a freshman at the University of Texas at Austin. This program allows Radio-TV-Film students to intern with companies in Hollywood for one whole semester. Flash forward to today, and I am only a few hours from getting on my California-bound airplane and I couldn’t feel more excited or blessed.

Since I will be pursuing a fashion photography internship with the incredibly talented photographer Asami Zenri, I decided to shoot a mini fashion(esque) editorial starring the absolutely lovely trio of Kaitlyn Macias, Mitana Aleksandrova, and Patricia Jimenez to celebrate the occasion. Enjoy and consider yourself kickstarted, Los Angeles adventure!
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Int. Cinematic Stories

Set Portraits

There’s something behind the pins…

These are some portraits of actors David Lee Hess and Caleb Burgess on the set of LANE THIRTY SEVENa comedic short horror film about a father and son who go bowling and discover something living behind the pins. Since my last post, I’ve had the privilege of attending a screening of LANE THIRTY SEVEN and let me tell you- It’s good. So good! There’s suspense, the footage looks stunning, and the performances are excellent. Be sure to check them out to find out more about the production. If you’re curious about what student filmmaking is really like, make sure to check out my post on the magic that are the minutiae of the student film set here: HOW FILMS ARE MADE.

And now for something completely different- It’s winter break in good ol’ Austin, TX and by “winter” I mean that it’s t-shirt weather. Shorts weather too, if you’re feeling adventurous. I have a solid two weeks before I move to Los Angeles, CA and I’d like to do a portrait series while I’m still at home and there are models at my disposal (read 3 brothers and their respective wives/girlfriend lounging about). I’m shooting for a “Tim Walker meets Tim Burton meets whatever props I can wrangle” kind of thing. More on that soon.

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Int. Cinematic Stories

Lane Thirty Seven

Student Filmmaking Never Looked So Good…

Let me tell you, there is a lot to be said about student and independent filmmaking. The rumor mill regularly churns out accounts of, how should I say it, problematic productions but, naturally, the nature of small-budget filmmaking is determined largely by exactly that, the minuscule budget. It forces people to work at a fast pace, with limited resources, and with little compensation in return. It’s not a discipline for everyone precisely because it requires a lot of discipline from you from start to finish. And while some student filmmakers flounder under the constraints, others thrive off it. One such case is Connor James Picken’s production of LANE THIRTY SEVEN.

This portrait series of the filmmakers behind LANE THIRTY SEVEN is inspired by THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER‘s Austin Hargrave industry portraits. The film is a comedic short horror film about a father and son who go bowling and discover something living behind the pins. Intrigued? Check out their Indiegogo Video to find out more about the production and sneak a peek at some of the film’s stunning footage. I can’t stress enough how wonderful and talented these filmmakers are. LANE THIRTY SEVEN is certainly at the top of my list of films to watch for the semester. Be sure to check out their work!

Pictured: Director and writer Connor Pickens, Director of Photography Marshall Copous, Producers George Nassan, Kaetie Turner, and Lauren Bray, and editor Meg London-Boche photographed at The Union Underground in Austin, TX.

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