Summer in the city is winding down, yet somehow I just started to notice the sound of crickets outside my window. Like clockwork, they faithfully come out to help lull the world into sleep as the sun sets, eventually stopping around 3 am signaling the time for universal rest. But instead of complete silence the crickets are replaced by distant revving motorcycles from the highway not too far away. Every now and then bass music will bleed through the window of a car passing, or a teen will whizz by on their bike. Life electrically goes on until the sun rises, at least it seems that way right now.
Like most, I'm grasping for what's left. What I didn't do with all my spare time. Like driving down with my windows open, listening to my favorite movie soundtracks. Or walking the dog past that one garage with the R.V. parked out in front, shielding the man drinking beer and watching television inside. Even the humid and foggy air is energized, particles flurrying into each other under parking lot street lights. Everything is still so alive.
(personal film stills)
With the announcement of my end to making Youtube videos for the foreseeable future (see post here), I've been cultivating my former interests once again. That includes editing old footage (see above), using my library card (Just Kids by Patti Smith, From Reverence to Rape by Molly Haskell), and I even broke out my mom's old records, collaging to Elvis' live Memphis sessions.
Watching Twin Peaks again (in proper moderation) was probably the best decision I've made since my last blog post. The over saturated colors, filmic grain, and the peculiar performances of all of the actors is wondrous. Watching Twin Peaks feels so rewarding. If you can make it through the pilot you feel like you've reached a new level of zen. I recommend one episode before you go to bed each night to foster a healthy imagination.
It just feels so nice to do things for yourself. To not feel like you have to share what you're doing. No pressure, no prying eyes, just learning time. I've been thinking about my beliefs, my experiences, and my future in such new ways. And for once none of them require the approval of others.
A friend and I did some long exposure night shots recently and I discovered a new appreciation for photographers (cinematographers as well). The craft is intense. Even if you have good taste, capturing an intriguing image isn't always easy. It takes experience to know certain angles and techniques off the top of your head. I think about cinematographers, how they'll map out a whole scene, omitting hundreds of options and sifting for the most interesting shots. There are so many perspectives to choose from, and what you choose defines the overall tone and accessibility of the film. You can certainly ruin it, that's for sure. That is why I feel so appreciative of Twin Peaks - because not only is the set design/shot list greatly meticulous, but everyone involved plays an integral part in creating the fantasy world that centers around Laura Palmer.
This aesthetically driven world could easily be corrupted. The wrong hair style, the wrong paint color, a line performed unconvincingly. Just watch the pilot, you'll see what I mean. Yet somehow David Lynch seams everything together without noticeable flaws. And usually that would be intimating to most artists, that level of perfection, but for right now it is just plain inspiring.
Sometimes we jump into things that we connect with because we feel it in our bones. We sit down, open up a blank page, grab our favorite pen - and nothing comes out. Then we sit there wondering if we had anything in us at all to begin with. When really... we just don't know the steps of breaking through. And sometimes, we arrogantly brush off what we should learn in order to do so, which ultimately leads to stagnant progress.
Although you might not be 'On' 100% of the time, I've learned it's important to roll with good vibes when you have them. Learn the steps that will bring clarity into making what you want to make, saying what you want to say. And if you need to bask in the haziness of inspiration and uncertainty, by all means do it - and enjoy it.
Part of me wishes I could go back to that blog post (A Four Part Goodbye) and rewrite it. Perhaps I'd make it more eloquent, less frank. But I don't regret writing it at all, and I want to say thank you to those who supported my decision on my various social media sites. Also, I wanted to say thank you to those who said they'd still support my other endeavors, which is really saying something since I don't know if I have anything to give right now.
I can see myself posting on this blog like I have been, perhaps including more of my own art as well (a podcast has also been thrown into the idea mix). But all I really know right now is that I'm going to invest in myself again.
Cheers to good vibes and a new school year.