I have successfully completed January, the first month of my Days of Film project. I posted 32 videos over 31 days (I cheated one day) on my YouTube channel and to my tumblr blog. I tried to make each day’s video be the very best video I could capture. Over the month of January, I took 288 videos, which means I posted just over 10% of the videos I captured.
And I’m feeling even more enthusiastic about the project than when I started.
My goal: to see differently. To see better. And to share those perspectives with others. My favorite video I took this month is of adding Swiss cocoa to cup of milk. When I visited Finland several years ago, I bought clear, glass mugs, so I set one of those on the table. I composed the shot at an angle so the orange on the table would be in the background, and beyond that, a fake plant that’s in the corner of our kitchen. I placed the container of cocoa close enough so it was partly in the shot. And then I pressed record, not knowing what would happen. What I saw through the screen was a perspective that I’d never noticed before, not in the dozens and dozens of times I’ve used the clear glass mug to make cocoa.
I suppose I’m trying to train my eye and hone my technique as a visual storyteller. More than that, I want to change who I am, to really be a creator of film and not just a consumer.
I’m no longer afraid that I’ll run out of things to film. I’m starting to discover that life in motion is happening constantly, all around me, and I just need to recognize it. For example, I live within a quarter mile of the freeway, but I’d never noticed before how many birds, and particularly geese, there are within a walking distance of my apartment.
Yesterday, as I was filming a drinking fountain, I kept taking shot after shot. A lot of them were good, and potentially usable. But none of them were truly interesting, truly compelling. In semi-frustration, I rotated the camera half partially upside down and took one shot. And I was amazed at what I saw—the same, boring drinking fountain made interesting and new.
And now, since this is a video blog, I better stop writing, and starting looking for things around me to film for February. But before I go, a recap of a few of my other favorite shots from January: