NBFC membership services director Cat LeBlanc sat down recently virtually with Film Co-op member Emily St. Pierre to chat with her about her creative life in New Brunswick in film.
This month Emily had the opportunity to take a Steadicam Operating course in Exton, Pennsylvania by the Steadicam Operators Association. This has been by far the best learning experience she has ever had. All of the instructors are working or have worked in major industry roles as steadicam operators so they provide practical and real life experiences in their teaching. Some of these very talented operators teaching us were Garrett Brown, the inventor of the steadicam, along with Jerry Holway, Chris Fawsett, Jay Kilroy and many more. On the first day the course started within two hours and Emily and her class were already in rigs and doing learning exercises. After a day of exercises and running though different challenging shots they would all eat dinner together and then have a couple hours of talks from one of the instructors.
Each talk was different; they learned about steadicam accessories, perfecting posture, operating safety, the business side and much more. Emily had the opportunity to work with some really intense steadicam rigs like the Shadow, Ultra 2 and the Archer and the ability to try out many different vests and arms so she could figure out what she would like to work towards in the future. Nothing beats learning from the professionals and the inventors, and learning with people just as passionate of this craft as she is.
You can read the full interview here:
Check out Emily’s website here:
NB Film Co-op member Gia Milani was recently spotlighted in the 2013 Canadian Screenwriter Magazine.
Writer’s Desk – Gia Milani
CS: Assuming you don’t have to go to a production office — when you’re working on your own, describe the primary space in which you choose to write. Messy desk or clean? Shut in or wide open? Remote or connected? View or blinders? Etc.
Gia: I write in my small home office about 50% of the time. The rest of the time it is out somewhere – a coffee shop, the library or outside. A few times I have rented houses with friends (Hi Matt MacLennan!) and written in other cities, just for a change. My office has no view, but that’s fine. When I write I don’t hear or see anything anyway. At home I type on my computer, but if I am out I write in a coiled notebook – always the same kind: Cambridge by Mead, and I always use a Pentel gel pen. I don’t bring a laptop out anywhere. I don’t like them.
CS: Do you have any “creative crutches” in your space? (Music, a dictionary, Koan-cards, TV tuned to Sports or HGTV? Water feature? Timers? Etc.)
Gia: I listen to music very rarely. I can’t read when I write either – no books before bed. I find both too influential and will lead my writing instead of me leading it. Instead, I make collages of what I think my characters look like, what they wear, their favorite things and what their living spaces look like. I keep the collages in a portfolio book that I keep on my desk. It’s a leftover habit from art school.
CS: How do you arrange your time in that space? Blast through, or frequent breaks? Hidden bottle? Morning start, or Wee Hours? Do you have any rituals?
Gia: I write only in the mornings. I get up early (I have a daughter, so this is a given anyway), and finish by noon. I try to not take a break. Sometimes I write in the evenings, but that is generally when I am on a very tight deadline. I tend to reserve the afternoons and evenings (and weekends!) for company work and meetings.
CS: Name three things (facts, insights, trivia) you’ve learned in your primary space about what you need to write?
Gia: I know that my desk has to be tidy for me to write. It isn’t now, but my excuse is that I am in post-production on a project. It doesn’t look like that on a writing day. Also, anything I need – water, tea, dark chocolate- they always have to be within arm’s reach. And I don’t answer the phone, texts or email when I am writing. If I am working, I don’t want anything to cut through my train of thought. Social media can be a huge distraction. I might be obsessed with Twitter. There are so many writers on there to chat with!
CS: How do you deal with procrastination? Distractions at the ready, or kept far away? What if you feeling blocked? What’s your creative kickstart when you’re “just not feeling it?”
Gia: I don’t feel blocked usually. What freaks me out is the fact that there are infinite ways a story can go. It’s choosing a path and sticking to it that can trip me up. If it does happen that I get stuck, I will go and re-write the whole thing from another character’s perspective. It deepens the overall story because then I know more about everybody.
Visit the Writer’s Guild of Canada magazine online here:
View Gia’s original interview here:
The NB Film Co-op Wants to Share Your YOUTUBE VIDEOS
The NB Film Co-op will soon be launching our first YouTube Channel as part of our PR and marketing efforts. This new initiative aims to help promote and connect our member’s works on YouTube. As well, interviews, vignettes and member profiles will be produced to share the NBFC story.
Are you an NBFC member with videos on YouTube that you’d like included as part of our curated Playlists?
We are seeking any of the following videos:
- short films/videos, features
- demo reels
- film trailers
- behind-the-scenes/on set videos
Please email your YouTube LINKS to firstname.lastname@example.org with subject line “NBFC YouTube”. If you are interested in helping to produce videos under this initiative please email Bun at the above email.
NB Pulse is compiled by Cat LeBlanc. Cat has been membership services director at the New Brunswick Filmmakers’ Co-operative for 17 years and is co-organizer of the annual Silver Wave Film Festival. She also does production management/catering and music for independent shorts for her volunteer work.