Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Dance

It seems I'm never too busy to have a little fun when the opportunity arises. Glenn Rawson is a radio and television personality and author in Utah and Idaho. As I was putting together the promos for his show I noticed that, using some of the shots between takes and the magic of television editing, I could actually loosen him up a little. Here's the result:

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Annual Post

Once per annum around this time, I turn a year older. I can't seem to stop it. It just keeps coming. This year is no different. It brought with it no epiphanic fanfare or any type of life-changing realizations (unless you count that, fun as it was, I'm never taking the whole family to Tepanyaki Steak House again--too danged expensive!) In fact, it kind of sneaked up on me. It didn't hit me that I was having a birthday until just a couple of days before it happened. This may be due to the fact that my side business has taken off this year and I've been holed up in my cave for weeks concentrating on projects and deadlines and other people's lives.

Most of the projects I get on the side are retrospectives. This year I did three videos for the University. Two of them were for year-end events: The Athletics Department's Senior Banquet and Hall of Fame, and the College of Ed's Convocation. I spent days focusing on the lives of the Hall of Fame Inductees and the graduating seniors, examining their stories and getting them ready to be presented to others. The other video was for the the poli-sci dept. The department was honoring a local celebrity, a well-known pollster--and professor at the U--with a scholarship named after him. The video included appearances by an austere group of leaders and politicians, including US Secretary of Health and Human Services, Mike Leavitt.

I have done these kinds of retrospectives for years and one thing I've noticed is that they usually present a larger-than-life version of the person they describe. All of the interviews are with friends and family and the spectrum of their responses to the subject ranges from respectful admiration to downright gushy brown-nosing. Occasionally there will be a critical comment (and I'm not talking about the "Dean Martin's Roast" type of comment that's usually kept in for comedy) which is squelched immediately. In other projects I've even had to edit a few of those out of the raw video just in case it ever fell into the wrong hands. Sometimes I get to meet the subjects of these videos and get to know how much the video differs from reality. That used to shock me but now I realize that it comes with the territory.

This year was the first time I've been immersed in other people's personal history for so long, though. And it's made me lose track of my own life. Made me put things on hold. I can't tell you how much I looked forward to working out again. I couldn't do it because I was working around the clock and I was too exhausted to do it. But I'm back at it and it feels great!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Car Commercials

I'm an artist and a video editor, but not necessarily in that order. The two aren't necessarily interchangeable either. Rarely is there any artistic value in my day job putting together television commercials. I've done many commercials over the years and many have been for car dealerships. I'm doing one right now, as a matter of fact. This one is for san diego used cars . The internet has really added a new dynamic to the whole process of buying a car. I can't stand dealing with sales people so the prospect of doing all the research for a car online, away from the pressure, is appealing. You certainly can do a lot of things online these days. I've rented movies, bought a camera for my business, bought books and music and a lot more. I haven't tried buying a car online, yet. Maybe someday I will. Like I said, anything that gets me away from those awful high-pressure sales people is a good thing, right?

And Another Thing

Speaking of this whole probate thing, there seems to be a lot of firms out there who make it their business to help. For instance, the orange probate attorney. It's not something I've really thought about much, as I said. But there is a need. I think the thing to do, though, is to thoroughly research several companies online and what they really offer. Personally I wouldn't go for the advance. I'm more conservative when it comes to money. I think my mother did the right thing when she put most of her inheritance into investments. If there's a way to do that and shelter yourself from the taxes, that's the way to go, I think. That's where a good attorney might come in handy. I certainly want to be better prepared than I am so that my kids will be taken care of. It's something to think about.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Grabbing the Future Now

I never thought I'd have the opportunity to even think about dealing with an inheritance. Then my grandparents died and my mother and her brother inherited a tidy little sum. I watched my mom and dad decide what to do with it and they made some good choices and some that didn't go the way they wanted. But for the most part it's worked out. My parents are going to live a long time--they'll probably outlive me--so I most likely won't have to worry about what to do with an inheritance. But there are firms out there that help with the probate process. If only to help you get your cash more quickly. I haven't done all the research so I don't know what they entail. I suppose that if you need your money fast and don't mind paying a fee for it, there's someone who's willing to help get you and some of your cash connected right away.