“It is such a psychotic thing going through the creative journey! That sounds really pretentious, but it's true!” – Catherine AKA ruby truelove
But! all this creative process thing (I can’t use the word journey – way too pretentious, even for me)
The creative process,
It really is psychotic.
My last post left you at the end of our original showcase with Daniel Pitt.
A very highly charged and stressful 3 days resulted in a successful showcase of our rough ideas and unfinished tech footage so far.
This post, with very little further prep, rehearsal time or any actual time together at all on the project … meets you on the first day of a three day countdown to our first SPONTANEOUS, UNFINISHED AND UNREHEARSED PUBLIC showcase.
Doing - relying on the power of positivity
Making - Showcase event invites
Drinking - Water and smoothies
Eating - A continental style selection from Sainsbury's. Bread, antipasti meats, cheese, carrot sticks and dip.
Small flapjack things. It's all good.
Feeling - still a bit delicate from NYE...
We arrive at The Junction J2 on Monday morning.
We are expecting a few days to work on the filming and the editing some of the various footage and effects for the acts.
We know we are going to hold another showcase on Wednesday.
We are prepared to showcase what we have made so far to some industry professionals.
There could be venue representatives, creative professionals and possibly some people involved with our grant.
This is no skin off our noses, these people are well aware of our research and development stages, they see this kind of stuff all the time. Quite possibly they may well be overwhelmingly impressed with how much we have achieved in a mere 10 days of working together!
But as it happens…
Our Catherine, the forever fiery beacon of darn right ballsy positivity decides right there and then that we should invite a bundle of the general public and hope for the best.
So basically, from this moment until about 2pm on Tuesday afternoon, our lives looked a lot like this..
So here are some pictures with captions instead!
We could write a whole separate blog dedicated solely to Daisy's various hoop issues....
Countdown - 24 hours ..
Making - Slow progress
Eating - We are sticking with continental theme. It was a winner for everyone. We are continental kind of people.
Drinking - Crap coffee and smoothies.
as is the fact that we haven't actually EVER run this show in full with all our tech in a large scale environment. Not even once.
I'm noticing people saying things like "fingers crossed" "hopefully" and "i think so" an awful lot.
Nobody is sounding particularly confident..
I don't get a chance to dwell on it much as i see Mr Jamie Powell wander in the door.
Not only does he bring with him a steady stream of dirty jokes and innuendos to keep us all distracted, but he has also magicked us up the most amazing prop! Crafted by his own very hands in the workshop of Bee's Bizarre Bazaar, Jamie has created us a very beautiful machine! It has lights and plasma and a freaky dolls head. Cogs and skulls and dials.
It's currently and temporarily strapped to some sort of luggage box on wheels..
Everything about this is interesting and at the moment it is just a prototype.
If this is the first try i'm a bit excited to see what the second draft will be rocking!
The last time i saw him this was more or less a clock... so who knows!
We get a chance to run through the finale 'Goddess' act with full scale video and interactive video effects for the first time ever.
The hairs on the back of my neck stand up as the music drops and the full effect of this act really hits me in it full glory.
As the act finishes I squeal a bit and beckon everyone over to watch the film i've just made of it.
Eyes light up and we throw around some high fives.
We may be getting somewhere here!
The 'can do' attitude evoked by the video of the Goddess act has dwindled a little.
We have 25 people confirmed to attend our showcase so far.
Nothing is actually completely finished.
It suddenly dawns on us that we don’t have a stage manager (unsurprisingly a bit essential for a stage performance)
Or a steward to seat people, or anyone to serve any champagne... or any champagne...
We still have a lot of editing to finish and we haven't run the whole show through yet.
So what do we do in the Arts when met with the prospect of a bleak and miserable outcome?
We smile, we laugh and we tell each other to get a good nights sleep.
Making - A show... hopefully....that's what we're aiming for here
Eating - Nothing until we crack out the tiny food. Then we eat tiny food
Drinking - Good coffee! Champagne. Budweiser Beer. In that order
Feeling - Anxious. Very anxious.
As this is the very first time we will be attempting to perform these rough ideas as an actual full show, getting video footage of it is a no-brainer.
So I spent most of my evening stressing about battery life on GoPro's and hard drive space instead of getting that good nights sleep we all agreed to...
Nigel and Martin our very clever and super patient sound and lighting technical experts are already here when I arrive.
I see how much of the tech is already set up and realise they have probably been here most of the night.
I decide that now is probably not a good time to mention how tired I am.
In comes Matt.
We would all be lost without Matt.
In the finale hour he has astounded us, by basically, getting all our shit together like a boss.
He arrives having made a whole bundle of footage we needed finished - and it is actually finished!
We can all tell he really put some hours in last night and we love him lots for it.
Daisy and Alex have arrived with something pretty special too!
They brought us a Mr Ash Day!
A stage manager in shining armor!
As well as literally keeping everything together and running the show smoothly, Ash also found the time to do a real coffee run.
Ash knows how we roll.
It is a positive start but we aren't out of the woods yet.
The doorway opens to crashing and clinking as Catherine arrives.
Plastic bags full of champagne and tiny food! Almost instantaneously a message pops up on my phone from our good friend Alexa. Alexa continuously astounds us with her incredible handmade costumes at The Neon Moon events.
Does Alexa happen to be free to dress flamboyantly and keep people plied with alcohol and nibbles this afternoon??
That's a hat trick.
So now some of the immediate problems have been sorted we can get this show together.
Everyone is trying to fit some sort of rehearsal in around setting up the stage and tech.
In the foyer people are arriving.
Catherine is still gluing the final piece of her headdress together and no-one has any stage make-up on.
I've got all my filming equipment set to go so I decide to take a breather from the room and check out whats happening in the foyer.
The room is chaotic but everybody is quiet.
It feels very anxious back here.
The moment i flick the finale one to 'record' the lights dim.
This Rodeo is rolling..
We managed to keep together a rough draft of an unrehearsed show with minimal hitches and I don't hear anyone booing.
A quick scan of the audience confirms that everyone looks pretty happy.
The red 'recording' indicator can be seen blinking on all of my filming equipment.
This feels like winning!
By the skin of our teeth!
So a little reflection on this time...
I began in this project pretty clueless as to what creating a show from scratch would entail.
On the very first day at the Junction when we started brainstorming and talking about making film and animations and interactive effects, the whole thing just seemed so mind boggling. I didn't know how to even begin doing any of those things.
In 10 days of working together, driven solely by passion, mostly shit coffee and the fear of failure we have MADE something.
This isn't just an idea anymore. This is a real something.
And it really is something.
I feel like I am narrating the humble beginnings of a very grand story.
Our research and development stage is coming to and end and it feels like the right time to step this up a gear.
So what happens now? Where do we go from here?
Wait and see....