Creative Co-Ops

I find myself in a constant bind when it comes to equipment. I’m talking specifically about creative equipment – cameras, musical instruments, and the like.

First off, I like gear. Okay, to be fair – I LOVE gear. Software, hardware, gadgets, shiny high tech things. Whatever. It’s all toys to me and love experimenting with newer, better toys.

For a while, I suffered under a common delusion; that the equipment I owned (or didn’t own) was somehow holding me back creatively. “If I only had THAT, then I could do the amazingly creative thing I have in my head.”

Which is a total crock of shit, of course. That’s your gear controlling you.

So for a while a few years ago, I stripped myself of more or less ALL my gear. Sold my video studio, photography equipment…almost everything.

Then I realized…okay, well…I need SOME stuff if I’m going to be creative at all. So I started rebuilding my creative arsenal from scratch. Luckily, everything keeps getting cheaper.

So now I have a decent, thought-out collection of stuff – cameras, computers and so on. Just about enough to do whatever I want to do creatively – write, shoot, edit, record, play, produce, promote.

But I’m STILL in a bind. I’m caught between two truths.

1) There is other gear I’d like.

2) I don’t use the gear that I already own most of the time. It just sits there.

Examples abound. I own a camera. I’d like a better camera. But I don’t use the camera I have all that much. How does a new camera change this equation?

I think one solution is a concept that runs counter to our America consumer culture.

A creative co-op.  A bunch of equipment owned by a group and used as needed. It reduces the cost for everyone and solves the problem of equipment sitting around unused.

The problem (of course) is people. It’s hard to get two people to agree on anything. What equipment? Who decides what is owned? What if people get lazy and don’t take care of it. What if someone hogs it all. And on and on.

Still; I think it’s an idea worth considering. So I’m considering it.

Own Your Own Career

crossposted at DreamCareer.info

Many working animators, visual effects artists and other CGI professionals want to make movies or develop their own projects…someday.

They think “how great would it be if I could make my OWN projects?!?” but it’s their Plan B….a backup plan. Maybe someday.

One of the things I teach in the Dream Career Workshop is that your “Plan A” should be doing your own projects. A job should be Plan B. Why put in your fate in someone else’s hands?

You learned computer graphics. You can learn to develop your own projects.

Bonus Disc 1 About To Ship

If you’re one of the people who supported the creation of Unschooling : The Movie by pre-ordering the special edition, your first bonus disc is about ship – it’s got around two hours of material, including (obviously) many things that won’t make it into the final film for space reasons. Interviews with Sandra Dodd, Holly Dodd, Brenna McBroom and Broc Higgins.

I’ll post an announcement here as soon as we ship.

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Indie Films

Amazom s having this cool Indie DVD sale right now. It’s only going on another 9 days, though…

They even have an under six dollar section with two of my personal favorite films of all time for only FIVE bucks each – Rick Linklater’s Waking Life and Terry Gilliam’s Time Bandits…crazy.

Seriously, check it out – a ton of great flicks.

Get a couple of drinks in me sometime and I’ll tell what I think Waking Life really means, too.

WordPress & Live Writer

I’ve started making a video series about how I use Live Writer and the first one is up at YouTube right now. It shows how easy it is to set up Live Writer with WordPress.

PS – If you DON”T have a blog, I also do blog hosting at stupidly affordable prices. Just email me at Lee@Stranahan.com if you want to get a blog set up for yourself.