Wednesday, January 8, 2014

If You Do it Right, No One Will Notice

Editor’s Note: Bagels and Roles is completed and will be debuting very soon. I few familial setbacks and hold-ups have been cleared away. Now, with the holidays behind us, I have had a chance to actually finish the editing of this film. More on that soon!

One of the coolest aspects of what I do is the fact that I get to do different things… almost as the mood strikes me. The people I have met over the years sometimes provide me the opportunities to do cool stuff outside the normal video shooting/editing realm.

Sometimes I’ll be asked to write a profile or other piece of online work. Or, it’ll be a friend or colleague asking for training in one of the various software packages or pieces of equipment video people use, (luckily, I can ask for help from the same people when I’m at a loss). But, the real fun happens when I get to do something way cool for a theater.
The Pied Piper Youth Theater affords me the opportunity to do some really cool backgrounds for their shows. I love to paint, and I love to paint big, so painting murals eight feet high by twenty-four feet wide or more is big fun.

Up until now, my favorite has been the palace at Agrabah, for their Aladdin performances. This was wild for me because I really don’t do buildings or cars or anything inorganic so well. It was a challenge and I was thrilled with not only how it came out, but how the audiences liked it.

I’ve done others. I did a really colorful and fun set for Peter Pan. I did a Seussical background that was neat, too. But, the one I’m working on now. Finished just today, as a matter of fact, is an over-the-top depiction of a cityscape for their production of Annie Jr.

The thing about backgrounds, set pieces, etc. is just this: If you do it well, nobody notices. On the surface, that sounds like a bad thing. But, in reality, if you do it right, the background becomes part of the show. It will appear to be the only way the stage could look, and so it kind of disappears. It would be too obvious to comment on it, because it’s obviously how it should be.

Does that make sense?

I haven’t gotten there yet.

The lighting isn’t great here, but I’ll post some better shots when the show goes live soon. I really love doing these and I count myself lucky to know folks like Bonnie and John Ryerson of the Pied Piper Youth Theater. Where else can I do stuff like this?

Find out more about Pied Piper Youth Theater by visiting their website:
Want to hire me to paint something big, (or small), for you? Or just want to say hi? Comment below!

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