Dead Lifts – Strength training
Stand up work station + lounging
Barefoot Minimalist Shoes
Cushion between legs
Lay straight – no possum
Fight or flight – Andrenalin Strength
“Gait – the whole body’s forward progress, including the foot strike and pelvic position, to arm swing, head and knee movement.” ~ Dr. Phil Maffetone.
We all love people watching. Me included! I guess the slight difference for me is that I particularly like watching people running. You could be running for the train in a business suit or running to the toilet. In any case, if you are propelling yourself forward then you’ll catch my attention.
When I’m unable to watch people in the flesh, I watch YouTube. Here are my all time favourites…
Steven Segall knows how to get up and go! He loads the achilles with a hard heal strike and explodes forward. Amazingly with all that torque he keeps his head level like an English rose fresh out of finishing school.
Erwan Le Corre of MovNat glides over rocks and gravel. His arms stay close and he makes micro adjustments like he has the wings of a albatross in a up-draft.
Dr. Mark Cucuzzella of the Natural Running Center takes the viewer on visceral and beautiful run.
Barefoot Ted runs in Luna Sandals in slow motion towards the camera. Perfect pronation earned by years of living life without shoes.
Gray Caws demos “Chi Running”. He looks like he has a pole up the ass. Like Wing Chun Kung Fu, one should never underestimate the power of this style.
Dr. Mark Cucuzzella pays off the opening scene in Chariots of Fire.
Marty, Nathan, Will and I showcase our gaits in the mountains. Notice the spring in our step? It was gone three hours later. We all arrived swaggering like exhausted billy goats chased down by a mad Aussie.
I’m a fan of 70s style exploitation films aka Grindhouse, so making a short film for the Melbourne Underground Film Festival has been high on my bucket list.
Connecting with one of life’s curve balls, I discovered, like most, a lack of knowledge of traditional burial and crematation. So, instead, I made a film that advocates my preferred option: natural burial
WARNING: This short film contains scenes adult themes, course language, nudity & necrophilia
With no formal training in film making I share what I learned along the way by researching, advice and doing.
- Do something unexpected
- Tell the story before script
- Use a template
- Understand Shot Types
There is no better way to get the creative juices flowing by doing something outrageously different to anything you have done before.
My story starts in my home town late 2010, I had startup burnout and was insolvent. I put the word on the street and a friend called offering a crematorium job. I said yes and started the following day.
During my short stay in the death industry, I heard stories, met characters and learned about “things” I would never have discovered on my own accord. At the end of each day, I would tell my stories to friends and they would tell theirs. At night my imagination would run wild with the macabre fotter which was my job.
As I booked in bodies and handed over remains to family I questioned “Modern burial or cremation?” and the answer was neither which made me an advocate for natural burial which motivated the creation of the film
Anyone can write a script because anyone can tell a story.
A script is just a story written in a who said what form.
Imagine the time you told your last story, real or made up? It was all in your head and not written down but you were able to recite it like it was yesterday. When a story evokes emotion it’s a good candidate for a script.
The day, I wrote my script the story had become so vivid in my head that I wrote the script from beginning to end in under an hour.
When a film evokes emotion you have made a film worth sharing
There is something about using a template with styles and scene sign posts. A template provides just enough structure and it feels all pro like. A template for my first time made it fun. I used a template for MS Word.
Learning shot types will add to your street cred on the set and provide structure for story boarding
Before creating a story board get up to speed on the shot types. Knowing shots allows you design the story board and communicate to the crew the scene.
These are shot I used.
- Wide Shot
- Mid Shot
- Close Up
- Extreme Close Up
- Reaction Shot
Story boards are great way to picture how the scenes will be shot. They make it real and further conceptual rigour improving your ability to estimate time and resources.
I spent 30 minutes reading “Drawing for Dummies” to prime me but you can even do it with just stick figures.
Time is of the essence when shooting a film and when people are volunteering it’s paramount.
Be weary of more than one location as the logistics of moving crew and equipment around can quickly eat into precious shooting time.
If you can keep the shoot indoors then do it. When indoors you can control the light which makes it easier for the camera person to shoot. Outdoors is at the risk of the environment.
I was lucky enough to have a friend offer his premises to shoot the film.
With planning, thinking on my feet and a little luck I was able to shoot the film in a clever way.
I shot the scenes based on furthest distance from the car which we would pack the equipment into.
Kind of like a proper army clean when you are real dirty. Start at the head and work your way down all the way to the feet.
What this ment was we moved and shot taking the most adaptive path to the car so we could all go home.
Below is a diagram of order of scenes over the two days.
“These people are volunteering Cameron. Don’t fuck them around” – Jeremy.
Jeremy’s wise words were enough to keep me focused on staying organised. I didn’t want anyone staying longer on set then neccessary. I wanted them to know before they arrived roughly how many hours were expected and when. With a scene schedule emailed days earlier the crew were reassured what was expected and that I valued time.
A crew consists of a camera person, sound\boom person and a gopher to help with lights. Anything less and you are going to run into show stoppers. I also needed two actresses, an actor, a nude model and a makeup artist.
The only thing on my side when starting off was I had the nude woman. A late night conversation in my sauna sealed my jewel and driving force to get others on board.
“Oh you have the nude dead woman? You must be able to get shit done! I’m in.”
In all honesty, without this Facebook message reply by Richard referring me to Warren Coulton the film probably wouldn’t have been made.
I didn’t have any film making tacit knowledge (only google), gear or contacts and after pitching it to Warren with in days had actresses calling me and a crew (lighting, camera and sound).
Crews are happy when you feed them and you know your shit. I fed them and though my lack of directing skills were a flakey my project\time management and planning ment things moved quickly despite my rookie mistakes.
- When more than one actor is interested in your film run a casting session
- Learn the 180 Rule
- Learn how to shoot with one Camera like you are shooting with two simultaneously
- Learn about Reaction Shots and take plenty of them
- Learn about Continuity. Ask everyone on the set to keep continuity in mind.
- When using some elses premises take before and after photos of where stuff is to put back correctly after the shoot.
- Don’t change the script after you start filming.
- Revise and proof your script repeatably. I spent 30 minutes of revision it was not enough. Suprise surprise actors will read word for word what you wrote!!
Listen carefully to your actors they have useful feedback.
Great editors can make a crap shoot average and good shoot great. I paid Tom $400 and it was well spent.
Great editors “post production” using final cut are hard to come by. I found Tom via RMIT media faculty. Tom was an alumni free lancer and loved classic film which ment he had a strong appreciation for grind house. Apart from mad Final Cut Pro (software for editing footage) skills he could make his own music using a synthersizer. One of my favorite things about the film is the music created by Tom . Great editors can make a crap shoot average and good shoot great. I paid Tom $400 and it was well spent.
An important lesson when working with high end editors is to trust your creative instinct. I was talked out of my original ending where the audience finds out the funeral director is Belle’s dad instead going with the aids call. I regretted the decision
It was fun and surreal experience and it wouldn’t have happened with out life’s unexpected surprises. Put yourself out there, learn something new and tell the story!
You only get one shot. Do not miss your chance to blow. This opportunity comes once in a life time. – EMINEM
Leisure dive a destination where people share relaxed mid air above water photos and Do it in a Dress a movement that raises money to send girls in Sierra Leon to school.
What if I wore my dress, dived over the Yarra River in Melbourne with a spectacular city backdrop and had an awesome photographer shoot my possibly greatest dive of all time?
It felt like a quest, a once in a life time and I’d only had one shot because:
- the Yarra river is disgusting and I didn’t want to go in more than once
- leisure dives look better dry. I only had one dress and no hair drier support
What happened next……
- Found an Amazing Photographer
- Picked the Dive Site
- Chose a Landing
- Visualized the Dive
- Simulated the Dive>
Launch is critical
At Crossfit we box jump alot and my surprisingly explosive take off was a real asset. (Crossfit wanker I know…hehe). Practicing the jump and angle a couple of times provided confidence that I could hit the launch and angle to get the shot. It provided an opportunity for Stu to get his eye in too.
Totally posing but hey my job was to pose. A required step to articulate the muscle memory for the dive.
- Sucked it up and dived>
This was to be the money shot. I’m dry, my dress is kinda down but I’m not smiling and my launch & pose was poor. Stu was a bit early and the lights washed me out. After this Dive Stu suggested I do it again.
I think this was the best one even though I was wet. Great launch, solid shot, casual smile, I felt really comfortable at the split second in time. But I was wet and the dress was way up. Hard to see I’m even wearing a dress
Some say this is the shot. Perfect execution by Stu, brilliant background, massive launch but I was too manic at that stage and it didn’t feel or look…..leisurely.
The idea was tantalizing and since I knew a professional photographer, Stu Walmsley was happy to help out for a good cause I knew I had the right person for the job.
We loved the background and Stu could shoot from stable flat ground.
Even though I had more chance of a needle stick injury. I did the right thing and slid in to check for foreign objects and depth. It was only a metre deep but the bottom was quick sand sludge. Grosse. The peace of mind made for a more confident dive.
To Stu’s amusement I spent a good two minutes visualizing my dive while whispering my mantra “Smile Cammy Smile”.
And here my quest ends. It wasn’t perfect but was is perfection anyway? It was heaps fun and pretty damn hilarious. I went on a heavy dose of probiotics and am feeling great even though I was wretching shortly after the dive.
What I learned for next time (there won’t be a next time):
- Smile before diving. Dive 2 and 3 I pre-smiled and it stuck.
- The chances of getting the first shot are extremely slim
- Wear a longer dress
- Bring a couple of dresses
- Try for a support person with a hair dryer
Super huge thanks to Stu – Hopefully who will provide a technical brief in the comments below.
Remember if you want to help girls in Sierra Leon get an education so they one day have the resources and free time to do their very own leisure dive then please donate to my Doitinadress page
- Bunch of Kale
- 1 x Citrus
- 1 x tray of Ice
- 1/4 cup Chia seed
- 1-2 tables spoons Udo’s 3-6-9
- 3-6 drops 50/50 Ginkgo \ Brahmi mix
Citrus juice is the key to changing the perceived flat earthy flavor to a tarty, spiritedly and plausible taste.
The older+mature the vegetables the more citrus required.
Critical to blending your Kale finely and quickly. Get into the habit of filling it immediately after. No ice in the morning equals no smoothie.
Tip #1: Kale, lime and ice (+water) are all you need. Other ingredients are optional.
Tip #2: Living in a group house? Make it clear – not refilling ice is punishable by a rotting wet towel flicking
Regarded as a super food and chock full of protein and good fats.
Chia turns generates gel when left to site in water. Shaking your finished smoothie later will blend the gel (omega 3 fat) and act as an emulsifier. I buy in bulk on e-bay.
Great for complexion, expensive, fridge life of 8 weeks (can be freezed) and makes one super horny.
Tip: No time to let smoothie sit? UDO’s is excellent for stopping separation making for a smooth chunkless texture
Believed by some to enhance learning and memory retention.
What evidence there is suggests taking daily to build up a residual. I took it for 7 months daily and felt it made a different but who knows? Any brain needs met were likely from high daily does of omega 3.
TIP: Save money and convenience and buy in liquid form from a natural medicine shop for approx $25 100ml (last 3-6 months)
- The Blender
Locate at your local market. I’ve use them and they work brilliantly. All moisture evaporates and the greens come out crisper then when they went in. Nano bags don’t work with bananas and tomatoes but who puts them in the fridge anyway?
Shop for a minimum 600W, Ice crushing blades, big jug (1.5L) and surge button.
I love my Sunbeam Blender Pro. Reliable and easy to replace parts. (blended my lid once….)
You won’t be drinking the amount of fibre generated in one go so you need storage.
When shopping for a bottle look for big mouth; solid grip; 1L plus; Odour and shatter resistant; made from 100% BPA free plastic; dishwasher and freezer safe.
Yep it’s right here
- Add Ice
- Add Kale
- Add Water (just under 2/3rd)
- Prime Kale
- Start Blending
- Add Lemon
- Add Chia, Udo’s oil, Ginkgo\Brahmi
- Blend for 2 minutes
Wedge Kale stalks next to ice so they touch blades.
Too little and you won’t get traction too much and the smoothie will overflow
Pump the surge button. Blades pull Kale into blades and use the ICE and water as an abrasive. Go to next step when Kale and ice is well and truly jammed into blades.
Different to video – I add subsequent ingredients while I blend. It gives me more control over observing texture. Pay close attention to the sound the blender makes as different ingredients are added. In the end it just makes the morning a little more exciting.
Roll lime\lemons to break down juice compartments for easy squirt. Don’t use juicer. One more thing to wash up.
Paying attention to texture and sound. What do you hear?
For best results let rest for 10-15 minutes then blend again for 60 seconds.
Poor into your container. Quickly wash your jug (nothing sticky here). Head out the door.
Walking past an abandoned BBQ, planted an idea to re-create the situation with a twist. On a Friday evening my house mate and I using a Flip camera shot the film sequentially in 45 mins and edited it using iMovie on Mac in an hour.
With many a slow project underway it was refreshing and fun to quickly see an idea come to fruition. It felt natural and easy applying recently acquired skills and the process invigorated my psyche.
Unlike many projects that only end if the underlying economics are disrupted. Story telling feeds on creativity and has a clear beginning, middle and end. Stories are independent of the structures and systems that dictate many of our daily activities. Even the simplest of stories embody a sense of freedom and create certainty even only for a brief moment in time.
And with that philosophical moment behind us it’s time to have a sausage on me.
Once upon a time two sausages sizzled in fatty bliss until…..
With barefoot living and minimalist footwear becoming popular there are many unknowns for people with flat feet.
I have flat feet and was dependent on insteps and shoes. These days I walk, work and run with no shoes or minimalist type footwear. Over @stevehopkins blog the Squiggly Line I wrote a guest post on what happened when I adopted a barefoot lifestyle.
This is the first part of a larger post I’ve been working on for ages and releasing sections at a time is a realistic way to get it out there. It’s inspired from my experiences trying to kick start projects independently with no cash or private health care.
If you are living in a city, low on cash and trying to keep your shit together here is a recommendation on keeping it together and not being taken out by illness, people or yourself.
Eat Vegetables for Breakfast
If you can change your diet one way, start eating vegetables for breakfast.
My preferred method is in the form of a green smoothie which was introduced to me by Peter Imai in January 2010. Since that date I’ve clocked up over 300+ vegetable smoothies and haven’t looked back.
After a smoothie I well…..feel good. I’m more hydrated, head feels clearer and best of all it reduces my craving for gluten based food (drags me down) around 11am.
A word on taste.
Nearly every day I hear someone say “I like the idea but the taste. yuk!”. As a society we have the habit of taking what something tastes like over how it makes us feel. Flavor over substance. Form over function. It’s like our senses are being indoctrinated into a materialistic existence. I’m not sure why people say it.
I do notice a correlation between the intensity of people’s yuk and the quality of their current diet. Crapper the diet. Bigger the Yuk! I think it has something to do with our orfactory memory being deceived\overriden by an onslaught of fat and refined carbohydrates so when veges come along it misinterprets how they taste and make us feel (mid term) because it’s comparing them to something short(term), intense, pleasurable and artificial (from an evolutionary standpoint).
A word on cost.
Vegetables are expensive. Correction. Food is expensive. The bigger the city, the higher the price and lower the quality.
The one exception to the adage “You get what you pay for” are green vegetables (if you aren’t dead set on one type of vegetable). If you will eat anything that is green there is cheap greenage everywhere! At your chain super markets, Asian grocery stores, local markets or even in your garden. My favorite gathering story was walking past a community garden in Melbourne or Oakland..not sure and hand picking spinach that was growing while across the road. Now that is cheap!
A word on productivity
I’d go as far to say “Green Smoothies” are the new Ramen Profitability food (food you eat when you have no money and are trying to make a company profitable). Look I love beans and am ok with rice but they both have there downsides. What downside is there to vegetables apart from being low caloric?
I’m not going into the benefits of vegetables it’s been done yo.
So what exactly is this green smoothie beast? Well the green part comes from dark green vegetables..duh. The smoothie part DOES NOT include milk, yogurt, ice cream or a ton of fruit (Oh but I love strawberries and yogurt you say). Forget it, what you’re actually making is a FAT ASS smoothie.
Looks its quite simple and easy to clean up because there are no sticky sugars involved.
The recipe is based on fundamentals passed on by Petey with my own personal flair added to create a fast easy clean kick ass green smoothie. Take:
One rack of ice
4-10 big handfuls of Kale or anything dark green
1 lime squeeze – add rind for kapow
4 table spoons of Chia Seed
Chunk of ginger (unpeeled)
Blend the crap out of it, place in a drink bottle if on the move, chug or suckle on it over the morning to truly take in all the flavour and goodness.
Peter and I both rate this chick who knows a thing or two about Green Smoothies
Recently re-discovered this map I created for a friend planning to holiday in Phuket, Thailand.
Recently, I shared advice with a friend on volunteering in Haiti especially at Hands On Disaster Relief an awesome, innovative, professional and experienced NGO.
We discussed topics like logistics, economics, mental health and physical well being the lata of which I have shared a few tips.
Malaria Prevention – I use a mosquito nets, DEET (small amounts) and clothing over anti-malaria pills like Doxycilin that increase sensitivity to light. Not advantageous in blistering sunshine. On top you have to down pills before arriving in the destination then take them every day with no guarantee of prevention. – My opinion: consult your doctor
Tip – At HODR bring a single 6 point mosquito net for maximum mosquito protection
Update – Elizabeth – HODR FACEBOOK PAGE
You really should take an anti-malarial, even if you do choose Doxycycline. I”ve taken it while on two different Haiti projects…it was fine. Everyone should be wearing super sunscreen anyway. Also, you should make sure all your innoculations are up to date: Tetanus definitely, and I’d also suggest HEP A, Hep B, and Typhoid as well. Rabies not so much. Also those electrolyte things that you can dump in your water bottle really do help.
Counter Swelling – Anti-histamines are not just for runny noses they will reduce swelling and itching from mosquito attacks.
Sleep – If you have the dollars pick up a blow up mattress over the yoga mat type.
Rest is the best way to stay on top of the days and if you are constantly moving to avoid pressure points the following day will be harder.
Recover Quickly – You won’t go hungry at HODR though protein at meal time is on the low side. So consider these power-ups.
- Protein – If you want to get stronger and recover faster bring protein to subsidize your meals. Alternatively, lump down a hefty slab of peanut butter at breakfast time.
Vitamins – I am a fan of Vitamineral Green a product with enzymes and nutrients with instant effects.
Alternatively, learn basic Creole and buy and prepare vegetables from the local market.
- Chocolate – Dark chocolate – It will not melt and is a great pick me up after lunch.
Monitor Wounds – Cuts and blisters are inevitable and it is your responsibility to take care of them.
- Blisters – To pop or not to pop? Who cares? They are going to pop anyway. Dry ‘em out every night with ethanol and apply liquid bandage (HODR First Aid) in the morning before going out. The quicker they heal the quicker you will develop callouses making you better with the sledge hammer
- Infections – The tropics can quickly turn a small cut into a Golden Staph infection so clean your wounds once to twice daily
Counter Sweat, Grit and Shit
- Its hot, real hot and humid. Grooming downstairs can mean the difference between box itch and none. Anti-perspiration in the same region is effective too. Enough said.
- Cut nails - The crud you can accrue during the day is astronomical. Give bacteria no place to hide.
- Cotton sucks – If you have the cash, wear quick dry, breathable materials and their easy to wash too.
- Keep your mouth shut - sometimes shit will spray on you.
Golden Rule – Stay Hydrated and Cover Up!
Don’t become a number – Nearly everyone will suffer from the side effects of dehydration. On any given day expect to drink between 8 to 12 Litres a day. Make sure you add electrolytes (salt + Sugar = Potassium + Glucose = Plenty of basic and better alternatives to Gatorade)
I did notice regular occurrences of heat stroke from exposure to the sun being put down to drinking too little water – YOU CAN BE TAKEN OUT BY HEAT STROKE EVEN WHEN HYDRATED.
Slip, slop and slap with a:
- Full brim hat
- neck scarf (I used a tea towel)
- sun glasses (expect them to chip)
- long sleeves
- fill in the gaps with sunscreen.
Finally practice being ambidextrous in everything you do (especially sledge hammer) it will balance out the back muscles and reduce injury and pain.
So there you go. A few tips from me. Remember to make your own mind up and speak to a doctor when it comes to any medication.
Have you volunteered in a similar situation? What other advice do you have?
ALL THIS IS INCONSEQUENTIAL IF YOU DO DUMB THINGS LIKE BELOW!