Behind-the-Scenes with Gordon Laing and The Chat

My recent episode of The Chat with Gordon Laing was such fun! If you haven’t seen it, check it out here.

The Three Muskateers

Like I said in the video, it took place in Nashville, TN during a Sony media event. We were there to experience the new mirrorless cameras – pre-production. A big honor! We were put up at the Hermitage Hotel, an totally awesome place with the most comfortable bed I’ve ever slept not nearly long enough in! Yeahhh, it was a week of 3-4 hours per night and NOT because of partying! Long, travel-filled days and early starts, whew!

Gordon, Frederick Van Johnson and me were like the three musketeers:

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Behind-the-Scenes with Makana

Recently, I did an episode of “The Chat” with slack key guitar master Makana. Can you say “AWESOME”??

Seeing Another Perspective

Every show I do immerses me in someones’s world. I can’t tell you how much I love that. It’s one of the things I enjoyed most about my acting career: getting to experience life through someone else’s perspective. With this show, I get to do that AND tell a story! Heavenly beyond description.

As for Makana, my sister Tina actually introduced me to his music years ago. She has an incredible gift for scoping out incredible musicians on the rise… and after hearing her rave about Makana for awhile, I had to go see what she was going on about. Yup, she was right! The real deal.

If you missed my Chat with Makana, well just click this link to see it.

An Artist of Many Facets (and Faces!)

The thing about Makana is, he’s an artist of many facets.

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Behind-the-Scenes with Peter Giordano and The Chat

Find my Chat with Peter Giordano by clicking this link.

What Goes on BEHIND the Camera!

I always smile at how smoothly everything looks in a movie, TV show, an interview. Because I always know that it completely belies what’s going on behind the camera!

In the case of my Chat with Peter Giordano, it was just funny. Funny how much lighting and camera gear I hauled down (with Pete’s help) to brighten up our faces in our chosen outdoor setting. How beastly hot it was and I was NOT dressed for it, thus I was drenched in sweat by the time we sat down to have our most civilized Chat. haha! How I lined up my arsenal of backup: my NEX-7 as backup video camera, Olympus digital recorder for backup audio – and them both bungee corded to a music stand next to the Canon 5DIII that I use as my primary camera.

While I do look forward to a day that I have a little crew to help schlepp, set up, do proper audio (For simplicity, I now use a Rode VideoMicPro attached to the hotshoe on my 5DIII), cue the final 3, 2, and 1 minute marks towards the end of the show, make sure the damn camera is rolling, edit.. and all that goes into this: Right now, it’s just fun and funny to do both! It makes me giggle to stand outside and watch myself scurry around doing all that goes into these live episodes. Google+ On Air Hangouts do have their advantages… they’re SO much easier! But it’s just so much more fun and immediate to talk to people in person, whenever that possibility presents itself. Plus the stories later are awesome!

Here’s a shot of our groovy set on Peter’s deck:



And here’s Pete grinning at me and I was getting my focus and exposure right before starting the video:



So Much To Say, So Little Time

We actually did 2 takes. One where we went to town on a GREATLY shortened list of questions I had for Pete. He’s got SO much to say and offer! But for this show, I have to think in terms of 2-3 main topics or questions, no more! It’s painful making the cut sometimes. Anyway, I was on about 1.5 of 4 questions and we were already AT TIME!! Ack! I had to stop us and start over. I felt so bad doing cutting him short! But he’s an awesome sport. We just shifted gears and the next take was what aired.

For the version we aired, we simplified our approach GREATLY, focusing just on how to think about a career transition or change… and it was STILL packed full of great stuff. That’s hanging out with Peter Giordano… you walk away with a TON of ideas and stuff to think about and just can’t wait for more!

I can’t wait to go photo-shooting with Pete… something we plan to do in the near future. He’s so enthusiastic about his photography and is super excited to be getting back to his creative/artistic side. He started there in his youth… but with a family and the opportunities that presented themselves in his life, the tech path simply made more sense at the time. He’s so strong in both, why not do it all? Such is living your life as an artist!

But Wait, There’s More…

Peter’s part of a powerhouse couple.. his wife Bridget Dolan is VP of Interactive for Sephora. She’s amazing!! I’d love to get HER on The Chat… she’s every bit the life artist that Pete is. Hmmmm… [taps her chin conspiratorially] you might have to keep an eye out for that one!

Behind-the-scenes with Kalebra

Whenever Kalebra Kelby and I get together – which isn’t all that often, BTW – it always feels like we could talk for days and days. Our visits always end too soon and they’re filled with laughter and deep thoughts. Plus alot of really silly jokes – and musings about chocolate. She’s a TOTAL choco-freakaholic, did you know that? Yep, true dat!

Did you miss her on “The Chat with Karen Hutton?” last week? No worries… it’s here.. 😀

When we were done with our Chat… the conversation had only just gotten started! A small group of us – including Dave Bell, who took these lovely photos, yakked for about another hour, sitting right where we were. Part of me wishes I’d recorded everything. But 1. I didn’t know that was going to happen and 2. sometimes out of respect, I don’t won’t turn the camera back on. Sometimes enough is enough; life really wasn’t meant to be a reality show, despite what television would have you believe.

We only HAD to quit talking because we all needed to be somewhere. But we picked up the next day over lunch with the same group though; skipped the small talk and got into the heart of things. I love people like that; with whom you can just be yourself and say what’s on your mind – and they’ll do the same. Is this a lost art nowadays? I’m wondering. But it’s one of the things I most treasure about time with Kalebra. Here’s a moment Dave captured of us recording “The Chat”:

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Behind-The-Scenes: Truckee River

Have you ever been on vacation or a road trip and come across a really beautiful spot that you’d LOVE to photograph – but under less than optimal conditions? Maybe the light isn’t right, there are no cool clouds to offer some punch – but the place itself is lovely, you’d love to capture it and you don’t have the option to lie about until everything is perfect? I know it’s happened to me! So as part of my ‘short video tutorial’ series, I made this one to offer some composition tips and post-processing ideas that can help you make the most of “meh” shooting conditions.

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