The concept behind this journal is to provide some sense of a daily writing exercise for myself and as well a production booklet (or pseudo-so) for this film. I do not imagine that anyone is necessarily excited for this film as of yet, or that is being made or that anyone is remotely aware of what Frisco is. That will all be made clear in the writing of this journal.
Day 1 of Principal Photography. I originally wanted to start shooting on Saturday, but because of the unavailability and the tear-jerking lack of foresight of every supermarket in my vicinity, I could not get the bargain deal for the cheaper version of the Go Pro camera. So Sunday I convinced myself to purchase the available, more expensive version (The GoPro 3 Plus Silver), but could not film STILL because of the lack of a microSD card. So Saturday and Sunday, two prime shooting days, had come and gone.
All the while, I was trying to figure out the vision of what I wanted this film to be. This film is hardwired into my feelings for my hometown and the resentment I’ve come to grow for it and the contention of what this place represents for me and how I’ve developed in opposition to it. That is not to say my entire evolution is a reaction to Frisco, but that the parts that are reactionary are indeed complicated. There’s no need to get into all of that now, but they are present and may be discussed. Do I take a very serious and unflinching look at what this place can do to people in a cinema verite style? Is this feasible? Do I make a film about its affects on me? Would that be watchable? Or do I continue this spirit that I developed late into my last semester where I created a film that was pure mockumentary absurdism and wholly an anti-film? Would the schtick still work?
These are questions that I’m still fumbling through. I want this to be good. I want it to act as some sort of armistice and consolidation and wake, all together, for me and my feelings entombed in this city and its people. People I’ve grown up with. I want this to be watchable, but simultaneously something that speaks. I feel I will find my answer as I become proactive in my activities and my conversations and my ennui fed decisions. The more I film, the more I’ll capture and the more I’ll realize through the Kino-eye of the GoPro. Dziga Vertov, a very influential soviet filmmaker, waxed philosophical about the capabilities of the cinematic eye, of the camera, and its ability to capture reality in a scope for more infinite than that of the human eye. We are taking butterfly nets to Truth, my associates and I. Filmmaking, to me, is an exploration of the soul as we see it manifest in the view screen, never quite knowing what we’ll happen upon and whether that thing is the reality that we seek or the one we suppress. You know, fiction or not, we see things that we normally would never notice, even if it’s just in the stories we tell, and we let it converse with us. I want that to happen here and it needs to happen for this to be a good film. I don’t want a commercial or critical film. I just want a good film and I need to become the camera to do that.
Today, first day of principal photography, I spent a good amount of time holding the camera in a god-awful worm’s eye view until I purchased a head strap. Glory be to this head strap. Once figuring out the mechanics, I took it to the local supermarket, Target where Brandon works, and I walked in, GoPro recklessly blaring on my head. Here’s a trick I did, though. I taped the entire outer case where the camera rests with black tape. I did this so no one could really know if I was filming or not. This helps me ease in and out of situations and cajoles those around me. So, I walked through Target, found Brandon, noticed I embarrassed him (I will be visiting him more now) and left by the employee lounge, to see if anyone would stop me. They didn’t. I went to another store to test this out again. Same conclusion. No one would really eject me from their store. This will be tested as I push my boundaries.
Then, I rode back home on my bike, taking the long way. Later on, I went to a Whataburger, a southern fast food chain, with GPA’s own Drew Schackmann, filming the conversation we had until the battery died.
Today was uneventful. Tomorrow I have a soccer game. I will try to film that. Tomorrow I have lunch with an old enemy and tormentor. That will be interesting. Tomorrow is promising. I will also place more effort into these entries as this one was just a spontaneous afterthought to the day.
Thank you for reading. We will keep you posted. Please follow for more updates on the film, our upcoming podcast, more short stories, and other media contents.