I find the beginning of year has always been a good time to reflect on the past year and to look ahead to the coming year. Over the holiday a quote from Austin Kleon’s book, ‘Show Your Work’, jumped out at me: ‘If you’re not embarrassed of your art from last year, you aren’t growing’. Upon reading those words I immediately pulled up my Vimeo and began watching videos from last year. I looked at music videos, corporate promotional pieces, weddings and work that I had completed for the Church. I was embarrassed of what I had created a year ago. After about 30 minutes I was finally able to relax. I had watched each video and thought to myself...the lighting stinks on that shot, the pacing does not work, I’m stretching the shots that I have and the sound mix is horrible. I had passed the test. I was growing as a filmmaker.
What does growing mean? After reflecting on this I discovered what changed in the past year. It was actually quite simple...subconsciously, my expectations for the work that I had created had grown. No longer would I settle for a Level 10...I wanted Level 11 (borrowed from Spinal Tap). This above-mentioned quote provided me with a check up to confirm I was still an artist/filmmaker versus someone who just presses a button on a camera. It gave me a positive perspective of where I had come from last year, and where I am headed for 2015.
Some great resources that I have been keeping up to date with is The Music Bed. They have a great community for filmmakers and musicians. The other would be No Film School. They have some interesting articles regarding all things film-related...both are worth checking out and have encouraged me to keep things fresh as a filmmaker.
The above is a piece I created for Broadway last year, if I were to do it again there are quite a few things to change. That's all part of growing as an artist.