Friday, December 5, 2008


When Adam said slideshows usually last about 2 minutes max, I realized that I was approaching it the wrong way. I was trying to tell the story of the Williamsburg Competition, but in 2 minutes, what I should give is the sense of it: what the event was like, what it sounded like, what it looked like, and people's attitudes at it.

As soon as I started thinking this way, I immediately saw how the slideshow can be rearranged and trimmed. So that should be fun to do. So, another good lesson, and thankfully it wasn't painful!


So the last day of the class has come and gone, and I've learned something: I love multimedia journalism, but I take my performance way too personally. While I sat in class, I was so eager to show what I had that my ego took over. It felt good to see videos from others that I considered "below" mine. Likewise, I was angry with work that I considered better. Defying that tendency in me takes slowing down and reflecting: I eventually managed to quiet my ego, but it took a little while.

I remember my friend Ramsey writing in my senior yearbook, "Don't let a competitive spirit get in the way of your happiness." He had worked with me on a class video, and I think he saw how obsessed I could get with the work.

Wanting a good product is healthy, but in the end I need to remember my work is not the sum of me. I love what I do, but I can't let my work define my worth or put me on an ego trip.

That said, I love the folk beat. I love working it, and I love the responses I got from musicians. Many said they were surprised to meet someone exclusively covering folk and Americana in New York. I'm sure there are others doing it, but I guess not too many. I felt my work was valued, and I was absolutely invigorated by the music.

The next step is to make Folk People a more interactive site. I want to create a place for New York Americana with offerings of video and text pieces, along with message boards on music topics, and ways for musicians to connect and find jams, good places to busk and strong open mic nights. Social networking mixed with news&reviews.

Before I get ahead of myself though, I'll take what I've got and refurbish it, from the photo slideshow to the videos. The podcast I'll leave alone. That baby took blood, sweat and tears to deliver, and Dr. Rivera said she came out just fine.

As always, I welcome feedback. I wish you all the best!



Tuesday, December 2, 2008

An easy one

The photo slideshow came out easily today. I thank the Lord for giving me the forethought and the discipline to have logged every one of those photos and audio clips from the Williamsburg Songwriters' Competition the day after it happened. It made for a quick editing session today, and besides a couple of flourishes that I might or might not use, it's all done.

I finished my research for video 3 and all my shooting on Monday, and now it seems I may have too much for a 3 minute piece. We'll see how it pans out: I'm glad that what was initially a rather flimsy series of snapshots of clubs with commentary by their owners is now a bit more of a commentary on the movement of New York's folk scene out of the Village and into points east.

I also feel that as I've been doing these interviews, I've been getting faster and faster at setting up, judging light, finding good camera angles, and getting into the conversation more easily. My last interview on Monday with the owner of the Cornelia Street Cafe, Robin Hirsch, was one of the most satisfying, partially because of this confidence. More importantly, Robin was eloquent, humble and open to talking about the grim prospects for the club and the decline of the Village. I'm glad I found him.

Alright, to bed now, to work tomorrow!