Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Oblique Sector is in a streaming partnership with Film Armada as part of the extended Nantucket Film Festival

Our short film, The Oblique Sector, premiered a year ago at The Nantucket Film Festival.

The Albion Park Productions team spent a glorious and eventful several days on that quaint little island taking part in the festival scene and the old-time whaling seaport atmosphere: Meeting, greeting, taking part in Q&A's, catching other interesting films and enjoying the parties, workshops and readings for which the NFFest is justly famous. Then it was over. Back to work (and on to the next festival).

Fast-forward nearly a year: We received an email from the Nantucket Film Festival inviting us to participate in a "streaming partnership" with Film Armada, as an extension of the Nantucket Film Festival 2012. Film Armada describes itself as an "Online Theatron." For the duration of the NFFestival, our short would be available streaming online and all revenue associated with ad sales and "tickets" sold to view our film would go entirely to us. After the festival, our short would be withdrawn or we could choose one of two options to leave it up as part of Film Armada or the NFFest archives.

What's to lose, right? Licensing agreements were signed, digital files were delivered, and The Oblique Sector is currently available (for the rest of today) online here:

How this will play out financially remains to be seen. I haven't purchased that yacht for the visit to Cannes next year, but who knows. It's a new world out there when it comes to distribution and revenue streams and to an extent, it's about trying out new concepts and ideas and seeing what sticks.

Film Armada is in beta. And in some ways, it shows. It's not really clear to me how much it costs to view our film, but it's reportedly $3. However, signing up and logging in to the site, it appears there is a $10 minimum purchase of credits, so that raises the "random casual viewer" bar fairly high, right off the bat.

And our film is represented by a rather awkward frame grab (automated, I presume?), as you can see below.

As any of you who have seen the film know, The Oblique Sector is not really about Amanda Good Hennessey's chest. Sorry, Amanda! I think we can blame it on the bot.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hello, Cape Cod! The Oblique Sector is an Official Selection of 2012 The Woods Hole Film Festival.

Albion Park Productions is thrilled to announce that our short film, The Oblique Sector, is an Official Selection of 2012 The Woods Hole Film Festival!

Thank you, Kickstarter supporters for helping us continue our festival run!

Movie Maker Magazine called the Woods Hole Film Festival "one of the coolest 25 film festivals in the world."

We're looking forward to visiting the festival and interacting with other filmmakers and seeing some great films (as well as our own!) down on Cape Cod. Should be the perfect time of year for a visit. Hope to see you there!


Monday, July 30th at 7pm
Saturday, August 4th at 5pm

For details about the festival:

(They just announced the schedule, we'll be getting our trailer and graphics on festival genius soon!)

Thanks for all of your support!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

iPhoneography in Print. An Article on My Cellphone Photography in the Somerville Journal

The February 16, 2012 issue of the Somerville Journal has a full page article about my cellphone photography.

So Meta It Might Explode! A Cellphone photo of my cellphone photos printed in the Somerville Journal.
Old School / New School: iPhoneography on the printed page.

I was contacted by Jillian Fennimore, a reporter from the Somerville Journal, who had seen my iPhone shots in various tweets and postings online and asked about doing a brief article on them for the "Somerville Life" section of the paper. I was happy to oblige! The world is infused with little moments of visual poetry if we pause to look. I try to share that online and I was pleased for the opportunity to share my images, with perhaps a different audience, in print.

In the article, I mention the wise saying that when you see something extraordinary, the best camera to use to capture the image is whatever one you have with you! For most people these days that is their cellphone.

Since getting an iPhone, even I admit that I'm less inclined to carry my Nikon around with me, in favor of knowing the iPhone, with its halfway decent camera, is as close as my pocket. This is convenient and makes me look less like a photo dweeb.

However, I'm also more likely to miss out on serendipitous moments that might demand high resolution and the capabilities of a professional camera (such as my fortuitous luck, in capturing the Harvard Square meteor in high resolution with my Nikon, last year).

As a visual artist, I'm drawn the slightly surreal and unexpected beauty in the everyday things around us. These images, I find, are almost always unexpected and unplanned. They rise up out of the environment like a sort of visual haiku. Even hitting with the force of a poem, a visual poem, if you will, if you can look for a moment in a mood of contemplation. Perhaps, the visual equivalent of a William Carlos Williams haiku, like his famous poem about the Red Wheelbarrow:

so much depends

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

This reads, to me, like the perfect description of a great iPhone photo of a poor American family's backyard in the 1920's. Provided, of course, that the iPhone had been invented then, and possessed by an iPhoneographer of William Carlos Williams' sympathetic imagination and a good 99¢ iTunes photo app.

Nothing enables a (post) modern visual haiku-ist better than a cell phone with a decent camera. I'll admit I'm partial to the iPhone, but I'm sure there are Droid phones and Blackberries, etc. with equally competent cameras in them.

It's a fact, however, that almost any cell phone photo needs a little post-processing work, to bring out its best. Most shots come out a little flat to begin with, by design. That's where the apps come in. The article mentions a 99 cent app that I use. For me, that's Camera+. ($.99 when I bought it - seems to have gone up to $1.99, for the moment) Truly, 90% of what I post online has gone through this app. It's not perfect, but it does a great job, overall. There are plenty of free photo apps, too, that do amazing things, including the ever popular Instagram (as well a some very cheesy apps).

So much of what we shoot these days never gets printed. In fact, the definition of what a photograph is has probably actually changed. For many, printing their photos today, is a rarity. And even more so with small, low-res mobile photos. Witness the demise of Kodak.

Consequently, I've rarely printed an iPhone photo, assuming them to be too lacking in pixels to look good. So I was pleasantly surprised with how good these ended up looking printed on newsprint in the Journal. Long live print! There is something to be said for a photograph that has an actual physical presence.

This issue of the Somerville Journal will be on newsstands until next Thursday. Get yours soon, as it's sure to be a collectors item! Some years hence, there may be no physical paper published anywhere, having all moved online and to iPad-style devices.

But, for now, here's visual poetry on the printed page. Little visual haikus of Somerville life!

Rosebud Diner / Windshield / Rain
Outtake: Rosebud Diner in the Rain

UPDATE: The Somerville Journal has now posted the article online.