Thursday, October 04, 2007

My Summer in Review : The Process

Well, with summer pretty much over I find myself looking back into the past (i.e. sifting through my unorganized My Pictures bin) and calmly reflecting upon the events and adventures which took place over the summer months and I've decided to write a series of posts to make up for the things which I failed to jot down earlier.

As many of you know, right after I returned from my San Antonio internship with VF, I started working again in the Senate as a session aide to a Republican State Senator. The legislative session was 120 days long this year.

Many great things were learned and experienced in the office, but one particular project stands out, a project that had little to do with actual work and more to do about what my job is.

Confused? That's why we did this project.

You see, not many people know how difficult it is to get bills turned into law, and espesially, what the legislative staff go through in order to make things happen. So halfway through session my supervisor and I decided to use our lunch breaks to show what we do using my camera and his ideas.

The film, entitled The Process, is a behind-scenes-look of the legislative process, albeit with a humorous and slightly exaggerated paradoxical spin. It was also a no-budget, script-it-as-you-shoot-it, last minute scramble of a project, complete with bad audio and shot on a camera the size of a P&J sandwich. There, that ought to kill high expectations.

Our initial story took many twists and turns throughout the project with Brian at the creative helm. He came up with most of the story ideas while I, as the camera operator and guy in charge of all things technical, murmured softly in my proverbial corner about how impossible a certain shot he wanted might be, or how the how audio would sound even worse if we shot in a certain room.

Brian is mostly the star, being the advertised "real-life legislative staffer", with myself and this years college intern, Josh, playing our respective positions. For our additional cast we threatened, pleaded, blackmailed, and, in one case, scheduled a dinner with the office's former intern (making him drive down from Seattle), over the course of two months in order to fill some pretty fantastic roles.

Casting cost us a few friendships, but who needs friends who won't act in your movies? Think about that when you meet a new friend.

In conclusion, I have been working on getting a high quality online version available, but with it being 23 minutes long I've had to do some searching for a good host (I'm trying Stage6 and DIVX right now). So until I unveil the project online to everyone (a few friends and family have had forced exclusive viewings), a few mid-production photos will have to suffice.


Creative Director said...

Some great stuff is going on in this blog post, Daniel. It is a feather in the cap of numberedsteps.

Thanks for giving me way too much credit for that brilliant little movie of ours. If I would list the creative content in the movie that was your idea it would probably crash the entire internets. For instance, the title "The Process"... Daniel's idea; and that's just the beginning.

I like the pictures, too. Well done.

Daniel Berkompas said...

Just so you know, I voted the following in the poll:

-Screenwriter/Story Review: Why do I have Celtx if I don't intend to use it?

-Storyboard/illustrator: If you're looking for someone with great shots in his head, but no artistic skill, pick me.
If, on the other hand, you want someone with fantastic artistic skill, but no shots in his head to draw, pick my brother Benj. Your pick.

-Film Editor: I've got the equipment to edit, if not the time, and some hands-on experience.

-Stunt Person/Pyrotech: I like fire; I spend much of my time in winter creating it, and watching as it hungrily devours all the wood I can get in the woodstove. So fun...

I suppose I could act too, but don't count on a great impromptu performance. Give me script, fine; no give me script, bad.

Esther said...

I can relate to the first bit...I have literally thousands of pictures that are in utter chaos...okay maybe not that bad but, it sounds dramatic. =)
I'll watch your movie later...looks interesting.

Film Critic said...

This masterpiece is the best of it's kind - A veritable substitute for "Legislature for Dummies".

(Available for sale at an incredible $400.00 only at

Daniel B said...

Creative Director - Thank you for identifying my modesty. You took long enough.

DB - Wow. Nice unofficial resume. I like bold section 4 (Winter Fire Creator). Lets talk.

Seriously, I will soon be revealing some sort of a plan to somehow make a film using the talents of a few interested Christians nation wide.

Esther - Thanks for the comment. As your brother was one the coerced cast members for this project (we met him at Sea-Tac International Airport during one of his layovers back to AK) I was pretty sure he was sent a copy. If not let me know. Unfortunately his scene didn't fit into the overall story but is included in the deleted scenes of the DVD.

Film Critic - Thank you...I guess. I think I do feel honored to have my film already pirated, but you'll never make that much off of it. If you could, we would have done so already. The premiere we forced our families to attend didn't rake in very much, unless you count free brownies. I like brownies. Post it on a Bittorrent site or something and send me a box of brownie mix.

Anonymous said...

That movie has pirates in it. Which is great.

Daniel B said...

By the way, don't let the production pictures fool you. My video camera quality was a far cry from that of my stills.

But that’s what production photos are all about, making the project look great and possibly better than it really is.

In any event, The Process will be available online shortly.