Tag Archives: wedding

Lesson #328: When in LA… and Maryland and Philly.

6/13/15.

The craziness is over.

I say that lightly, because it never really is.

On Thursday night, I flew cross country from LA to Maryland to meet up with my parents to drive to Philadelphia to film another wedding. After another three time changes, I’m finally about to arrive back in LA. The trip was a short one, but I can most definitely say my short little excursion was packed with mishaps, mayhem—and a bunch of lessons.

1. Always tell your parents you love them and are grateful for them. They do a lot for you, and while you can never really repay them for it—you can try by showing them some love.

2. Unfortunately, shit happens. Not only do you need a Plan B and C, but you need a Plan E, F, and G—and you might as well start thinking about H, too. Bring more back-up than you ever think you’ll imagine needing. In my case, this means that when I’m filming something, I need to start carrying my extra camera battery and memory card (like, five of them) on me at all times. Not in my bag across the room—but on my person—in my pocket or my pants or my boobs or wherever. I need to have always have access to it, and quick. Fortunately and by the grace of GOD, I captured everything—but I was darned close to missing a few things after my camera filled up rather quickly with some good shots (even with two memory cards). When I went inside to quickly upload the clips, the ceremony began to start (my laptop had the wrong time because of time changes and I didnt even realize it…scary) and I had to literally RUN downstairs and back outside. I couldn’t even upload the clips; I just began deleting shit off of my camera. When the ceremony was over and I went to upload the clips to my laptop—what do you know? My laptop storage was full as well. Luckily (Plan C, yea?), I brought my external hard drive. Surprise: that didn’t work either. My laptop wouldn’t let me drag the clips to into the folder. The DJ offered to let me download the clips to his laptop, and then sent them to me. I was so embarrassed. So lesson learned here, and thank goodness for good people. Which leads me to my next point:

3. When all of that happened, the DJ told me: “Hey, us wedding party people gotta stick together.” Whether you believe it or not, you will always have some sort of team by your side. Humanity is not as shitty as you may (or may not) think it is, I promise. When it comes down to it—people are always there to help. Be that person for someone else, too.

4. Don’t let anyone (no matter how tempting) distract you from what you need to do when you need to do it.

5. Sometimes you have to go out on a limb and ask. When you want something to be good, you have to speak up, or it’ll never happen!

6. Just because something is popular, doesn’t mean its good. Which I guess is kind of obvious. But I had to re-learn this one after we ended up having the absolute WORST philly cheese steaks in Philly. We passed a perfectly fine restaurant to chose the more popular, well-known one. Huge, huge mistake. Don’t do it.

7. If you ever park in an airport over the weekend, make sure the parking prices match up with what’s online. Or you’ll pay $80 dollars and probably cry.

8. If you ever park in an airport over the weekend, make sure you actually write down exactly where you parked. Or you’ll walk around LAX for an hour at 1am, and also probably cry.

9. If you drop something on your car floor at 2am, don’t try to pick it up. You will get pulled over by the police with megaphones, surrounded and approached for what looks like drunk driving, and you will definitely cry.

10. Tacos are great. But sometimes tacos can’t fix a bad night.

It’s okay, you’ll laugh it off the next day.

Day 328.

Congrats Kristin and Adam; wishing you a happy ever after and all the love in the world :)

Advertisements

Lesson #297: What a bridesmaid’s shoe and a camera can teach us all.

5/14/15.

Today I started editing the wedding I did videography for last week. I noticed that in some of the shots, I was so focused on whatever I was focusing on, I didn’t see that other things were wrong or out of place within the frame.

For example,

I got a beautiful shot of a bridesmaid’s wedding shoe.

It also just so happened to have a large piece of cardboard laying two inches in front of it.

Nice.

So let my amateur wedding videography skills be a lesson to all of us.

In fact, let it be a lesson about life.

1. Check what’s in your frame. Your subject isn’t the only thing that’s in the limelight.

Life translation: Pay attention to what’s going on around you. Focus is good—but when you become so fixated on one thing that you forget or neglect to acknowledge everything else? Not so much. It doesn’t matter whether that “thing” is a person, object, or goal. Are you so set on what you’re after that you’re missing out on other great “things”? Other people, opportunities, chances? Are you so fixed on what you want that you’re creating a negative space for yourself? For others?

2. Once you see something that needs to be removed from the frame to make it an even better shot, do it.

Life Translation: Don’t be afraid to move something that isn’t working in your frame—AKA—your life. You might have to move it a little to the right or a little to the left. That’s prioritizing. Sometimes, it’s just not right and you need to take it out all together. That’s okay too. Every once in a while, our frames needs re-assesing and our lenses need re-adjusting. My good friend Cherese and I talked about this the other night. She told me, “When people think conflict, they think that it’s the end of a relationship or friendship.  It’s not. Conflict is simply the chance to re-evaluate.” So do just that. Prioritize, move, remove, shoot, repeat. You’re the photographer and cinematographer of your life. You have creative reign.

Sometimes we get it wrong. Every shot won’t be perfect. Every shot can’t be perfect. But that doesn’t mean that we’re bad, or that this one shot reflects our abilities. It just means that we have the opportunity to learn from it. We have the chance to readjust.

And lucky for us, we get more than one shot in this life.

Life really is a roll of film.

So keep shooting.

Day 297.

Lesson #291: What I learned when I just went for it.

5/8/15.

Whether you’re uncomfortable with stepping out of your comfort zone, scared you might fail, or embarrassed by the lack of things you know:

1. Start somewhere.

You don’t and won’t get experience if you never put yourself out there and physically go after what you want. Seth Kingsley, one of the head writers and producers at E!, emailed me this after I sent him my resume:

You rock. I love students who know what they want to do and go after it! I talk to kids all the time who say they want to be writers but don’t write. Or aspiring actors who don’t act. You, on the other hand, are getting things done! So keep it up.

I promise you, I didn’t realize that what I was doing was special. I still don’t. I’m just truly doing what I love to do. But what Seth said inspired me to think about my life and pursuing my dreams even more. Actually—it helped me today in my attitude towards tackling what seemed like something I didn’t know how to do or think I could do: just go for it.

A few months ago, a friend from high school saw my final video project that I talked about in a previous lesson, and asked me to film her wedding. My response:

“…………You know I’ve never done that before right?”

She told me she knew. But she believed in what I could do.

Honestly, I was scared shitless. All the way up until today, and even all the way through the wedding, I was terrified.

All I could keep thinking was: “Am I doing this right? Do I look stupid? Am I getting the right things?” 

My lesson of the day isn’t “how to stop nervous thoughts” or “overcome them” or ‘”solve them.” Oh, no. When you’re nervous, you’re nervous. When you’re scared, you’re scared.

But as you’ve probably heard before,

do it afraid.

Do it not knowing what you’re doing or if it’s right. Do it with questions. Do it with doubt.

But do it with belief that that you can get through it, that you will learn from it, and that it’s your first step towards something.

2.If you want something, don’t settle for not getting it.

Gonna be real for a moment.

Sometimes I just have to hope and pray the whole world doesn’t read this blog.

Tonight, I also met a really attractive and nice guy. And we ended up kissing.

This is completely not like me.

No. You don’t understand.

If an attractive person even looks in my direction, I’m like: “What are words?”

But tonight, I decided that it wasn’t going to end with me going home and wishing we had kissed. It was going to happen.

It was somewhat obvious that we might be into each other. And then it became blatantly obvious. We talked all night, but then it started to get late so I said bye. I looked back at him and walked really slow. He laughed at me from down the hallway and caught up with me to walk me out. When we got to the door, we awkwardly stood there for a minute and then said bye again and went our separate ways. I got in my car and was like, “What? What? No. I’m not leaving until—no.” So I seriously got out of the car, went back in, pretended I left something (classic), found him, and made him walk me to car.

You know how it went from there.

Anyway.

This is really awkward. I’m literally posting this on the internet.

But basically, what I’m telling you is this.

IF YOU WANT IT, GO GET IT.

Period.

The end.

Thank you, today, for teaching me a great lesson, and helping me realize that I have way more guts than I give myself credit for.

It all starts by—well—starting.

So whatever it is,

go after it.

Start by starting, and don’t back down until you get what you want.

Day 291.

Lesson #192: Only takes one time.

1/30/15.

I feel like when people say “It only takes one time,” nine times out of ten it’s an old person warning you about going to jail, or getting pregnant.

I’m sure you’re relieved to hear that I’m not here to report to you about either of those two things. Well, at least not today anyways. Sorry.

But I am hear to tell you that it’s true. It only takes one time. Or, at least, that’s a little bit of what I’ve learned in my experience.

Just a few months ago, I made a music video for a class project. If you read Lesson #144, you’ll remember me talking about this. My project partner and I decided we wanted to go all out. Full throttle. We didn’t care that it was just a project. We wanted to actually create something good, something cool. We worked for weeks, edited all night, and even shed some tears at assholes who tried to tell us the story wasn’t good enough. It got more than 1,000 views in 24 hours, more than 40 shares, over 60 comments, and more than 100 likes.

A class project.

People I didn’t even know were sharing it, and I was floored. I couldn’t believe it.

Over the past few weeks, I have been asked to film two weddings, more than four big events, and I even got a job offer—because these people saw that video.

I used to see people around campus doing big things, taking on large projects, and I was scared that I would never be able to do that. I was scared that I wasn’t good enough—that the opportunity would just never arise for me.

But to my surprise, all it took was one time, one video. And opportunity arrived.

I’m not saying one video (or product or presentation or book or pitch) will be your end all be all. Maybe it won’t. But maybe one video or product or presentation or book or pitch could. It only takes one time. One person you know. (It really is about who you know guys, make friends) And then you’ll find yourself in the presence of one opportunity. And then another. And another. And that’s how you get the ball rolling. That’s how you start.

Whatever you do, or whatever you aspire to do—

work hard and persist in absolutely everything you do.

Give it your all (I’m talking 100%), or give it nothing. (My personal philosophy, but feel free to adapt whatever floats your boat)

You never know who will see it.

You never know where one time will get you.

Day 192.