Several years ago, Effin Artist started with a little voice in my head that I’d say to myself time and again. I’d do something creative that would make me feel good.
I’d say to myself, “I’m an Effin Artist, man!”
Then it became a newsletter to family, which then grew into a lark of a website I built only to learn how to build websites. Then it became a blog and a real website that I called my writer’s platform.
It turns out the Great Divine had much more in mind. Effin Artist continues its evolution into something I couldn’t have dreamed up had I wanted to, which is saying something because I do some serious dreaming when I get on a roll.
What is it? That’s coming soon. But with that next evolutionary phase in mind, we gathered to capture the essence of Effin Artist in a three-minute video.
I thought it would be easy. Three minutes. How hard is that? I guess harder than I thought. The director, Dave Moutray of Crux Jinx Productions, called for a 6 a.m. call time. We had all day to film, so that seemed weird, but I went with it.
The sky was dark. They wired me and lit me and shaded me and did all sorts of stuff while I tried to sit still. They said, ready, snapped that clacker thing in front of my face and said, “Action.”
I stared at it all silently.
“Uh… that’s your cue,” Dave told me.
“Cue for what?” I asked.
What is Effin Artist?” the folks with the fancy cameras and bright lights asked me.
“Uh…,” I said.
“Well, you might need to say a little more than that,” Dave said.
I then launched into an incoherent eight-minute ramble that seemed inspired to me through the first six minutes. Then the camerawoman’s head fell into her camera, and I wondered if I had gotten a tad off message. I decided to wrap it up, which took two more minutes.
“Maybe we need to say it just a bit tighter,” he said.
“Cam B, wake up,” he said next.
The woman’s head jerked up and she wiped the slobber from her chin.
We kept at it. At one point, my daughter’s voice came through the window, unmistakable in its derision.
“Seven takes for one sentence? Geez, he sucks,” she said.
I felt the love.
We kept at it. At one point, we had this brilliant light, but Dave said, “hold for sound.” I then noticed the parrots of Telegraph Hill, who fly by our window every Sunday morning on cue, did what they always did, singing and flapping and circling as the Sun did what it does, rising. They all looked sort of impatient.
“The birds are taking one more lap,” the light guy said. The sound guy never said much. He just looked out. I realized the poor guy was wearing headphones, which every inane thing that left my mouth went right to his ears. I think at one point I broke into song from a little lyric I wrote “When I get home again where the parrots sing…” I made a note to give him hazard pay.
Nobody else seemed very happy about the parrots.
“Strike it,” the director said. “The Sun’s washed it out.” They started moving all the lights and stuff they had put it up.
Eventually, they had me leave and had a writer friend of mine who has suddenly become very important to Effin Artistry, Dawn Pier, sit down and start talking to the camera. They all seemed happy with that move.
And so it went. Lots of interviews and lots of cameras and lights and changes and things until suddenly our three minutes took several hours and well, I watched amazed at the artistry on display, all in an attempt to capture the artistic vision of this thing called Effin Artist.
What is Effin Artist?
I’m not sure we figured that out. But I know this: Whatever it is, is pretty Effin cool and you’ll be hearing more really soon… about three minutes more to be precise. Because the folks at Crux Jinx, well, trust me, they are Effin Artists, man. And patient ones, too.