Saturday, February 28, 2009

Day Trip to Tombstone: a video

This is a little different today. I have been working on making my first video for about three weeks now. It is a lot like composing a painting, but not as tactile. I wanted to use music to tell the story, setting the mood, and to show how popular music can be used for expressionistic statements juxtaposed against images. I'm such an amateur at this (am receiving helpful criticism from family, too), but I offer it to those of you who have never been to the Southwest and would like to see what it looks like around here today.

Plus, learning the terms of film editing is challenging. The terms don't have any concatenation* to the process of moving, splicing or manipulating images. I suppose that non-artist types (N.A.T.s for short) would probably say the same about such painting terms as: vanishing point, scumbling, golden mean and alizarin. Some movie editing terms I learned, but have no real understanding of: "ripple delete", "cross dissolve" and "default still".

Now, I must get back to making that mail art piece I promised Ell this week. Oh, yes, and sidle up to that new way of painting that gestures feelings more than an academic rendering.

Please forgive this change in medium. I'll behave again soon.

*Another word I've never heard of...Who will use a synonym of this in a sentence first?!


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Melinda,

I'm blown away as always. You are just amazingly talented. Put whatever you want on your blog, you're great in every dimension.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Melinda,

Last night I watched the movie with the sound off -- I know but it was 1 a.m. and my sweetheart was asleep in the room. Today I watched it again with the music (I know that's the whole point). Super!!!!! I want the name of every song and singer. Can you email it to me. And how do I see this beauty large? You are stunningly amazing, and I bow before your talent.


Melinda said...

Oh, my, goodness, Barbara. I am humbled by your generous comment....yes, I am overwhelmed by your compliments.

Unfortunately, has a file limit of 100 MBs to upload to the web. It is soooo much better full size, but I can't even upload it to youtube larger.

However, I can send you the link to my picasa album and you can see it large, but a bit fuzzier. Here is the link to that:
Tombstone trip

If you click on the small window next to the audio adjuster, the video will go full screen. When you want to make it small again, just hit your 'esc' button in the upper left of your keyboard.

Thank you may rise now. ;-)

Joan Breckwoldt said...

Melinda, you are SO creative, I would never dream of attempting to make a video! I really enjoyed the trip to Tombstone, your video made me feel like I was along with you. I think the music had something to do with it, it gave the story life. Thank you for sharing!
p.s. Who were the people on the horses? People ride horses to town in Tombstone? Or were they some kind of mounties? police force? just curious.

Melinda said...

Thank you so much, Joan! I really appreciate the positive feedback--more that you can know...

Now, you've asked a very interesting question about the riders. The two riders you saw at the intersection are from the Texas Kate Wild West Show. Most of the people in costumes are volunteer re-enactors or they are members of community groups that host such historical re-enactments. It is legal to ride a horse into town and to wear holstered guns in town, that used to be true in Tucson too. Horse riding through traffic is no longer legal, I believe, but wearing a gun still is....can you believe?!

Melinda said...

I tried to upload a larger version of the video to my public picasa album. If the Tombstone Trip link doesn't get you there, this Trip will.

Anonymous said...

How fun to experience a little bit of the trip with you! The rockin' music was very apropos. I liked how you superimposed comments on the moving images.
I didn't have any trouble seeing it full screen.

Any reason you did a double take on the guy with the dark green shirt?

White cars are the norm here too. There are three in my driveway!

Melinda said...

Hi Silvina,
Nice to hear from you! So, it gets hot in your neck of the woods too, eh?! :)

I did a double take on the one man after I noticed how he looked like a modern day ruffian. I started to see a pattern wherever we drove. Then, there is an elderly man wearing dark and scary sunglasses, in between some re-enactors later in the video, that also looked pretty mean. It was intriguing that there were these tourists, looking tough, wandering around the town, but not in costume. Made me think that not much has changed since the 19th century.

Glad you liked the music. Those are some of my favorites. I had my playlist running as I made the film and was surprised how the songs seemed to narrate a story.

We uploaded the video to youtube last night and I think they do a better job of keeping the images clear. What a big project this was!! But, I highly recommend it.

susan hong-sammons said...

Hi Melinda, Your blog is so diverse and interesting. wow!!!

Melinda said...

Thank you, Susan. Now I feel motivated to get back to the real work---putting paint on canvas!

daviddrawsandpaints said...

Well, howdy pard'ner!
Got a chance to view this right through this evening, with my chaps and stetson on, and it's absolutely fantastic!
Unfortunately didn't get to see enough of Wyatt Earp's house, but was relieved when the stagecoach and hoss'es pulled into view. Even better when you wound the window down!
So, not much has changed since I was last there in 1847 (being chased by Pinkerton's men).

And another thing: you are a real sweetheart!
I have been stuggling with a concept that you have nailed down firmly with your statement:
"Oh, yes, and sidle up to that new way of painting that gestures feelings more than an academic rendering", for which I thank you profusely!
You are are a brilliant artist in the fullest meaning of those words!
I doff my white stetson, and give a yipee-ai-yay! (x3)

Melinda said...

Ha! David! Ha! I reckon you are the most likable cowboy anywheres. Thank you kindly, kindly for yer generous comment.

I've been to Tombstone many times over the years, but have never stopped at Earp's house. I always seem to miss it too. Arizona doesn't really 'do' historical places the way Californian's 'do' things. As a native Californian, I can say that Arizonans think putting up a sign and convincing a few locals to ride to town on a regular basis is the equivalent to Disneyland. Come to think of it, when my boy was a wee lad, we used to let him ride the escalator at the mall and told him it was just like the rides at Disneyland. :0

I live to serve, my fellow artist, live to serve. So very glad that you found meaning in my statement. This is what I have been struggling with of late, and think that my work will be better in the future. I want to encourage you to let go and remember that no one dies if a work doesn't turn out the way you would like.

It's a great picture--imagining you in a stetson and cowboy Scotland. Wow. You are much better with the western lingo than I am with Scottish slang. I'm going to have to crack open a book on the subject!

daviddrawsandpaints said...

I met this cowboy once with a brown paper stetson, paper waistcoat, and paper trousers. He was wanted for rustling.

Melinda said...

Apparently, he wasn't too good a rustler, having only paper accouterments for embellishment. You are such a card! ;)