“Son of a bitch. It’s bad enough your God damn dog tore up my prize tomatoes but now he killed my chicken too.” Jon stood clenching his fist. His face the color of his prize tomatoes that were strewed about the yard.
“Dude you need to chill. He just animal and that’s what they do man” the young man said from the other side of the fence his eyes match the color of Jon’s face.
“If I catch that damn animal-“ Jon shook his fist in the air and stomped across his yard slamming the sliding glass hard enough to make it rattle. A few beers and some football later Jon woke up on the couch to the sound of dog, howling. Armed with the shotgun he kept by the door for an emergency, he stormed out the door to find the dog digging up all his potatoes. In the silence of the night, Jon grabbed the barrel of the gun and swung it over his shoulder like a bat and crept towards the dog. “Gotcha” he whispered.
“Hey man, I’m making some burgers. What do you say I make you one and we bury the hatched,” Jon waved at his neighbor over the fence whistling has he flip the sizzling meat patties.He through one on a bun with fresh topping. “When until you taste what fresh lettuce can add to a burger.”
“Hey man, thanks. Have you seen my dog?” the young man walked up to the fence and shook hands with Jon.
“No, I’m sure he’ll be along.”
“Yeah man,” He took a huge bite of the burger and pointed at his mouth smiling and nodding.
“Special recipe for special occasions,” Jon said with a smile. “I’ll get you another to go.”
Category Archives: Art
“Son of a bitch. It’s bad enough your God damn dog tore up my prize tomatoes but now he killed my chicken too.” Jon stood clenching his fist. His face the color of his prize tomatoes that were strewed about the yard.
This year’s Santa Fe Independent Film Festival kicked off Oct 15-19 all around the city. Being a working Albuquerquean, I didn’t leave myself time to attend the full event. In fact, I didn’t leave myself time to attend any of the event. After all, we had a festival here in town that I attended, so there was no need to haul up to Santa Fe for theirs.
It happens that on Friday I was on my way up to Santa Fe to go the Artisan Art Expo to pick up some discount art supplies, but that’s another story. While I was up there, I decided to check out the DIY Filmmaking workshop with Laura Terruso. It was an eye-opening experience. I arrived early, I always mis-calculate driving time when the plaza is involved. I got a wonderful tour of the Santa Fe Contemporary Art Musuem’s theater set up. They have a small black box theater where the lecture was and a beautiful redone main theater. Being a completely independent entity, they are able to showcase a wide variety of movies, more then many of the other theaters in New Mexico.
The workshop itself feature two Indie movies that Laura Terruso had made in her home base of New York City. She talked about her feature films “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same” and “The Foxy Merkins”. She went into detail about how to turn your weakness into strengths. By not having a budget to shoot with in NYC she was able to use the city as the background in both movies. But she cautions, “When your asking people to donate their time to a project, feed them. Feed them well.” Both of these movies were made with below minimal budgets and came out beautifully. Those of you with a Netflix account can check out “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same”.
I walked out of the 90 minutes lectures feeling inspired to take on the world of film. It was a good thing too, because that night I jumped into my first 48-hour movie challenge. Now that I have recovered from it, and gone over my notes from Laura’s lecture, I feel ready to turn my weaknesses into strengths and go make a movie.
Bombing down I25, my eyes barely open, gripping my coffee, I ask myself, “Why are you out of bed before 7am on a Saturday – willingly?” The answer to that? I wanted to see how to make a movie. Not a feature film, mind you, but a 48 Hour film festival film. New Mexico’s own Friends of Film has invited me on set to see what goes into the making of a film. This will be all new to me. I have never been on a film set before and I can’t wait to see what happens.
A little background on The 48 Hour Film Festival. This festival began in 2001 in Washington DC. The brain child of Mark Ruppert and his filmmaking partner Liz Langston, who now reside in Albuquerque, the goal was to push creativity to the extreme. The participants are given a genre, a prop, a line and a character that they have to work into a script. They don’t just have to write a screenplay in that time-frame, they have to write, shoot, and edit the footage over one weekend. The drawing happens about 7:00pm on Friday night and the writers jump into action, putting together a script, and have it sent out hopefully by 5:00am the next morning. Then the crew will spend 12 hours or so shooting, another 12 hours or so editing, handing in the completed work by Sunday at 7. Each group can choose how they want to work and can secure the cast’s shooting location and equipment in advance of the contest.
Back to the morning, I’m late, of course, for call time, but I get here in time to hear the pep talk. This group will wrap shooting in 12 hours, no matter what. Safety first, followed by fun, and hopefully it will translate into a great short film, between 4½ and 7 minutes long. Like a full-length feature, they have actors and actress in costuming and make-up and a full crew. Everyone breaks from the huddle to get their area up and running. This gives me a chance to talk with the writers and find out what it’s like to write a movie overnight. Jaqueline Loring and Cliff Gravel are on hand since they wear multiple hats in the production. Kathleen Gonzales, the third writer, has gone home to get some sleep, but will be back later. Jacqueline and Cliff walk me through the night. First the phone call about what genre was drawn and then a brain-storming session with the cast and crew about how the movie should progress. By 9:00pm, it’s left to the writers to brainstorm and write together. By 1:00am, they are laughing so hard that they know they’re on to something. Somewhere between 2:00am and 3:00am, the script is written, edited, and then sent out around 3:30am to the cast and crew to begin prep work for the 7:00am call. “It’s unusual to have time to edit when working like this.” says Loring.
Friends of Film, Video and Arts Albuquerque is a cooperative that is run by its members since 2004. The group not only sponsors a 48 hour film crew, but participates and helps in many film endeavors in New Mexico. Anyone of any background can join, as long as you have a strong love for making a film. Throughout the year, FoFVA holds monthly meetings, workshops, and helps members get in touch with one another. Look them up on Facebook and try out one of their meetings.
In the 48 Hour group, sponsored by FoFVA, anyone can volunteer to be on the crew. No one is paid, but it’s a great opportunity to try something different. On this film, the Director, Michael Miller, has worked in many areas of filming before. He and his Assistant Director (AD), Carmen Tsabetsaye, who keeps things on track, have done worked together before. Many of the other members of the crew are also experienced, but are trying out new areas. Director of Photography and camera operator, Elizabeth Waites, has worked on set before, but this will be her first time behind the lens for a film. Local actors hone their skills working on these demanding projects. “It’s not about winning,” shares Miller. “It’s about being safe, learning, and having fun.”
The editors of the film go to work, as soon as the first scene is shot and sound splicing begins. There is no time for being ideal on a shoot like this. Shooting wraps about 7:00pm Saturday and full-on editing takes place. “It takes about twice as long to edit a film, then the shoot time,” says Sheryl Brown.
Lacking in time, the movie is edited quickly, with the hopes of winning, but also knowing they can go back and clean it up – enter it into other film festivals around the world. Sunday night, the movies are handed in at Tractor Brewing Company. The following Thursday and Friday, the Kimo will show all the competitors, even the ones that don’t qualify, for the official contest. From the groups shown, the best will go on to the final showing Friday night at the Kimo. There is a lot of competition out there with great crews filming and working all over New Mexico trying to win. Over 120 cities across the country hold a 48 Hours competition and there are nations competing all over the world. This project, Sir Acheron’s Party by FoFVA, won for sexiest use of prop in the end. If you want to know how check out the 48 Hours Film Festival and find out more.
The speed, creativity, and technical know-how that go into producing a film of any kind is mind-boggling to say the least. For every minute you see on your large or small scene, there was approximately an hour of filming to bring it to you. So, the next time your watching your favorite movie, remember to give thanks for all the knowledgeable hard-working people that put it together for your viewing pleasure.
Journalist, turned novelist, Anne Hillerman has been writing from an early age, following in her father’s footsteps. From article writing to editing and now restaurant reviews, Hillerman ran the gambit in the newspaper world. Back in 2004, for she began the Tony Hillerman Writers Conference in honor of her father, and now has written her first novel picking up the series her dad left behind.
Anne began her career over twenty years ago, starting out as a copy editor, and then moving into reporting. She started at the Santa Fe New Mexican and then moved on to work for the Albuquerque Journal. Moving into reporting was a learning experience that Hillerman wouldn’t trade for the world. It helped her learnto write against deadlines, hone her skills to word counts, and gave her confidence in her writing abilities. Fact sorting was the most relevant skill she learned for her later career as a fiction writer. There are so many facts and details that a writer can add to a story or an article. It takes discernment to know which of these facts or details is going to impact the reader. It’s a skill that most writers spend lifetime learning. Hillerman states, “Being a reporter introduced me to some many different kinds of people and gave me a lot of confidence.” Taking on the role of editor allowed her to work with some talented writers. While helping other writers tighten their work and create stronger prose, Hillerman learned to refine her own writing.
Hillerman and her husband, Don, worked together to produce many books on New Mexico including: Santa Fe Flavors: Best Restaurants and Recipes (winner of the 2009 New Mexico Book Award), The Insider’s Guide to Santa Fe, and many other titles, none of which were novels. After her father, Tony HIllerman’s, death in 2008, she decided to write the next book in the series that her father had created. Hillerman wrote Spider Woman’s Daughter in 2013, partly cathartic, partly to honor her father’s memory, and, of course, to pay homage to the characters. The story, number 19 in the series, picks up with Leaphorn, Bernie, and Chee, with the addition of some new characters. Staying true to the main characters in the story, she gave her own twist to the new mystery and allowed all the characters to grow in the addition. Devote readers maybe be surprised who solves what in this installment of the series, but it will keep you guessing right up until the end. She is in the process of completing number twenty and signing a book deal for three more installments. These characters will be around to save New Mexico from the criminal elements for years to come. “I loved his stories,” Hillerman shares. “I love his characters… his setting.”
Wordharvest, founded in 2002 by Hillerman and Jean Schaumberg, supports the art of writing. They began the Tony Hillerman Writers Conference in 2004, now celebrating its tenth year, Tony participated in the inaugural conference that was focused for mystery writers. Originally intended to be a one time event, the conference went over so well that it became an annual event. It was opened up to create a space where writers of all genres could come to learn and share experiences in the 2010 Writers Conference. The event is three days long and held in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Day one consist of hands on writing workshops, day two the craft of writing, and day three the business of writing. The conference days are packed with speakers, special guests, and panels to give new and seasoned writers information on writing from all angles. Along with the conference, they run a contest for new mystery writers every year. “We thought it would be fun to shine the light on the wonderful talent that New Mexico has in terms of writers,” says HIllerman. Writers who have not published a mystery before can submit their mystery novel for a chance to win a $10,000 advance. Submission deadline is June 1st, and it must take place in the Southwest. Please visit www.wordharvest.com for details.
Anne Hillerman – talented writer, inspiring editor, and community involvement keep her busy and traveling all over New Mexico. She still finds time to do restaurant reviews during her travels. If you’re a mystery reader, or a writer, Anne Hillerman should be on your list of people to follow. She is doing amazing in the writing world and you can be a part of her journey.
New Mexico native Melody Groves has a deep love for anything cowboy and Old West. Winner of six first-place writing awards, Melody is a member of Western Writers of America, SouthWest Writers and New Mexico Press Women. She writes for Wild West, American Cowboy, True West, New Mexico Magazine and other regional publications. When not writing, she’s busy playing rhythm guitar with the Jammy Time Band. Kansas Bleeds is a coming of age story everyone can relate to. Hotheaded teenager, overbearing father, big brothers putting in their two cents and negative outside influences, except this story is set in the old west where shootouts replace arguments and teenagers are considered grown-ups. Luke, our hotheaded teenage antagonist, is married and himself a parent who is trying to break free of his father’s views. But, it’s not easy when your family is living in your parents’ house. The language and feel of the book transports the reader to 1862 Kansas, a place and time of hard living, and the polarizing effect of the war even in the territories trying to stay out of it. Through out the story you will spend as much time cheering for Luke as you do wanted to shake some sense into him. A reader, like myself, with limited interest in the Wild West the story kept me turning the page well after bedtime. The hard choices a family has to make and the tragedies that spur them on, will make you grateful and sad when you reach the end. The Wild West holds a special place in Melody’s heart and she invites you to show you what a wonderful and mysterious world it could be. Leave yourself plenty of time for reading because sleep won’t be coming any time soon. Checkout more at New Mexico Entertainment Magazine
Lou Ferrigno was a young boy with an introverted personality and a speech impediment. He would read comic books from cover to cover, hoping some day to find a way to feel as good about himself as he did about the superheroes he adored. He life began to change in his early teen years and he went on to be the one of the people he admired the most.
At the early age of thirteen, Lou was looking for a someway to more confident in his own skin. One day at a friend’s house he saw some weights in the corner and tried to lift them. They were so large he couldn’t do it, yet. But, he knew then that someday he was going. “ One of them (his friends) flex their arm and he had a bicep, a small bicep like a baseball, I was like ‘Dang! I want be like that,’ and that is how it begun.”
Reading The Hulk® comics books for most of his life, he was ready when the audition opportunity came up. “I had been the Hulk my whole life,” said Ferrigno. He went in without preparing – knowing they would give him the role. After a short time of doing some pantomiming for the camera, he was given the role and began to film the next day. The Hulk was a great role that helped Lou break into the Hollywood scene.
Ferrigno stayed in the limelight of film for almost ten years before going back to weight-lifting. At forty-two, he went back to the competition circuit to finish the sport. At his age, with a wife and three kids, weight-lifting bought new challenges. “It’s a very narcissistic sport,” says Ferrigno. “You have no social life, your dieting and training, and you have to conserve all your energy for competing.” With his family’s support, he competed again, placing respectively at Mr. Olympia and Masters Oympia, and closed the book on his competitive weight-lifting career.
The movie role that stands out most to Lou was a documentary of a documentary he worked on called David and Goliath. The actor who was playing David kept trying to antagonizing Lou on set, which made him uncomfortable. It took him everything he had not to squeeze the life out of the actor. On the Celebrity Apprentice, the other members of the cast truly underestimated Lou. “They expected the Hulk to show up,” shared Ferrigno. When he got to the boardroom he was very outspoken and surprised everyone. “Luckily I learned a lot about branding and raised a hundred thousand dollars for my charity ALS”. No matter what role Lou has played in his life, he has taken a lesson from it.
One of Ferrigno’s newest ventures, Ferrigno Fit, by no surprise, is a fitness company that the whole family is involved with. “I don’t believe in dieting,” says Ferrigno. He wants to teach people how to adjust their eating habits for a lifestyle change. Lifestyle changes are the only way to really improve your life and health. Ferrigno’s latest project is presenting a body building show, FerringoFit.com, that he hopes one day will turn into a health expo, including fitness chiropractors and others. His kids all started out over-weight and they each made their own decision to get into shape and become personal trainers. With his whole family backing him, he has already proved he can do anything he puts his mind to. With his sons in mind, when it came to asking what his advice would be for the youth of today, those who look up to him, Ferrigno says, “Be passionate about what you do, and don’t compete or compare yourself to other people. Everyone has a different genetic make-up. Stay away from drugs, alcohol and negative people.”
Ferrigno is a lover of comic convention. They are a great way for people to come and meet their favorite characters, and be themselves for a day, without fear. It’s great to be able to emerge yourself in pop-culture. He hopes to leave a legacy behind of him of being in good shape and being healthy.
From introverted child to the Incredible Hulk, Ferrigno has proved to himself and the world that he has a lot to offer society as a whole. Expanding every year with new ideas and new endeavors, he will be in our hearts and mind for years to come as a hero in so many different ways.
Just south of Central Ave. on Gold Street sits ArtBar. A small unassuming place from the outside, ArtBar spacious layout and full stocked bar will make you glad you stopped in. It’s a members only club here in downtown Albuquerque. Before you let that turn you off there are some things you should know. The membership fee of $30 a year goes to a support art programs all over Albuquerque proper. They hope to expand that to helping communities in and area New Mexico. Once you’re a member you can bring up to ten guest with you at any time as long as you’re on site with them. It also gives you the ability to rent out ArtBar and hold your own art
openings or events on the premises.
The night I went, ArtBar was presenting comedians on a road trip from Seattle. The bartenders are friendly, attentive, and, most importantly, mix a great drink. The bar itself is a work art, from the hanging lights to the comfy couches set around the room. Aaron Kirby is on stage. Slipping around the curtain we fined seats on one of the leather couches by a window. I’m barely in my seat before I start laughing uncontrollably which continues until his set ends. Next up Derek Sheen. He truly looks like he is right out of Seattle circa 1992, with his flannel shirt and shorts. Microphone in hand e has the audience holding their sides within seconds. Now these guys are not for the light of heart or easily offended, but I imagine those people would know better the to go to comedy shows. Checkout ArtBar pay the membership fee it goes to a good cause and see what happening in the art world of downtown Albuquerque.
Irene Blea, New Mexico native who earned her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Colorado Boulder, has released her second novel in the Suzanna series set in 1920’s New Mexico, “Poor Peoples’ Flowers”. The novel picks up with Suzanna, now an adult, husband returning after a two year absent. Suzanna runs away from her life and leaves her children behind in hope of finding a better life. Violence and loneliness permeates life for women in Northern New Mexico, with few options and even fewer ways to escape. The church was the only place to turn for help in those days, for anyone.
The language is authentic and beautifully crafted to fit the times. The description breathes life into the New Mexican countryside. The characters are richly emotional with diverse issues of their own. A Humanities scholar, Blea takes an in-depth look at what drives to make the sometimes-horrible decisions they have to make, and the guilt that comes with life choices. This novel is more then just a look into the past, it’s a message of why society needs the changes that were brought and we need to fight to keep improving the conditions people live in.
An emotionally raw look at abuse that until so recently was considered normal this profound novel will make you re-evaluate your life and that of those around you.
Read more at New Mexico Entertainment Magazine
By Winter Flack & Teresa Ewers
Many have witnessed the thrill of the HBO series Game of Thrones. But there are those who have been fans for years because of the writer, the 5’6″ bearded legend we know as Martin – George R.R. Martin. Going as far back as 1971, George has been writing science fiction for the mass. He began with publishing more then fifty short stories by 1977. His first novel was published in 1977, hitting a total of four by the early eighties. The fourth novel called The Armageddon Rag was a contemporary novel set in the 1980’s. It got great reviews, but it was a commercial disaster. With a black mark on his record, he couldn’t find a publisher who would touch him.
“Luckily for me when that door was closing, another door was opening in Hollywood,” shared Martin.
The book that almost ended his career was optioned for a film adaptation. Although the movie was never made, it introduced George to movie making. CBS at the time was looking to bring back The Twilight Zone. The shows producer turned to science fiction writers to create scripts for the shows, even writers with no screenwriting experience. Martin did a script for the show, followed by another, and then, before he knew it, he was on staff out in Los Angeles. He never left Santa Fe, needing a calm place to call home. Working in Los Angeles was an amazing time and he worked with some marvelous people, but he wanted to come back and live in New Mexico.
After his time in Hollywood, he decided it was time to put his own shows in development. It was a time of learning in his life. In Hollywood, you can pour a year of your life into developing characters and a story, and, through no fault of your own, they will kill your show idea. Martin decided, at that point, he needed an audience that he could entertain. He wanted to create things that people could enjoy, no matter what four guys in suits had to say. With this in mind, he went back to his first love – writing. He put his effort into writing Ice and Fire, which became Game of Thrones, currently playing on HBO. After five years of trying to write something that would turn into a TV show, his most long and complicated work becomes a hit. Martin loves the way the show has turned out, being that the books are his babies. Each one is about 1500 words. These take him years to write, so he found a great team – David Benioff and D.B. Wiess – to handle the majority of the show’s writing. They write about seven, out of the ten, episodes a season. He does write one script a season for the show. He wishes they could run for twelve episodes so that they could get more of the books into the show itself.
Martin continues to be an acclaimed writer and is now a theater owner. George R.R. Martin re-opened the Jean Cocteau Theater in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 2013. The theater had originally opened in the 1970’s and George had watched many movies there in his time. Citing his main reasons – one of them being they had the best popcorn in all of Santa Fe – the darkened theater sitting empty made him sad. After months of wondering why someone wasn’t reopening the theater, he realized he should be the one to take on the challenge. Now, they show movies, music, and magicians in the theater. If your lucky, you can catch the showings of Game of Thrones. “A little piece of Santa Fe history and the Santa Fe community bought back to life,” says Martin, who is involved in picking out what comes through the theater, but most of the decision runs through Jon who manages the theater. Jon has ties with the film community in Santa Fe and sets up great finds for everyone, of every taste, to come and enjoy at the theater. “I occasionally chime in from the owner’s box and say I want to see Red Planet.” jokes Martin. “We opened with my favorite science fiction movie and we had Robbie the Robot here.” In case there are a few of you out there who aren’t into theater, they also have book signing and author events from time to time at the theater. There is no excuse if you live in Santa Fe to miss out on this little theater.
When Martin has some down time, he spends it with his wife, Parris, who both offer support to The Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary in New Mexico. He also does a lot of reading these days and science fiction & fantasy has been his go-to for literature. It started at a very young age with comic books and has just continued to grow. Nickel paperbacks to full novels, he has never been able to kick his habit. He likes to throw in a good mystery, or historical fiction, every once in a while.
When asked what he would like his legacy to be, he turned to one of his most inspired writers, J. R. R. Tolkien. “I think every writers dreams that his books will last. That’s what I hope of.” says Martin. “I was very flattered a number of years ago when People magazine called me the “American Tolkien” because I’m a huge fan. I read him in high school. He was the man who redefined modern fantasy. Just being mentioned in the same reference as him is a great compliment. And if my books are read 100 years after I wrote them and I can become a candidate of fantasy like Tolkien’s books have, that would be enough legacy for me.” He has a goal for the theater as well. “I hope that the Jean Cocteau here will last. I hope the revived Cocteau last another 22 years where people can watch movies, listen to music and eat our popcorn, which is still the best popcorn in New Mexico, with real butter!”
George R.R. Martin is a multi-talented individual who puts his heart and soul into everything he does, hoping to entertain people along the way. Make sure you check out the Jean Cocteau Theater in Santa Fe and enjoy the hit series Game of Thrones on the big screen or pick up the book. Either way, you will step into a world beyond your wildest imagination.
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