Tag Archives: New Mexico

FOFVA- Friends of Film Video and Arts

New Mexico-based Friends of Film Video and Arts is celebrating its 10th anniversary with big changes. Anne Stirling a founding member of FoFVA is spearheading the new direction with the help of dedicated FoFVA members, not only will they continue to be a relationship building group, but now they will be going into hands-on production.

Anne, with the help of FoFVA, wants to re-invent how quality television is made; by creating a new, cooperative production with one of her projects that is close to her heart, Quirky View. Quirky View, a television show showcasing real people doing real things that are fun and different, will be the vehicle to help FoFVA grow from a networking group into a hands-on, broadcast quality, film-training program, that gives back to the community. “This endeavor will be a great way for people to get involved in a production and see it through,” shares Stirling. “Quirky View a top quality, well respected, and well-received series that is in demand year to year as an upbeat, off-beat content that highlights people doing things they are passionate about.

It will be a long year of working out the details, but FoFVA will begin a production schedule in January 2015. With a small-dedicated group, FoFVA hopes to make a business model that will inspire others and add diversity to television and movie line-ups. What will be the outcome from designing a new business model for production? The production will continually train new people in all areas of film including cross-training members, giving members a place to teach and share experiences from the film world, and a database of FoFVA members to showcase their talents, projects and skill sets. FoFVA hopes one day to be a clearinghouse of all things film in New Mexico; for now building a community of quality filmmakers helping one another is the priority. It will also give members a chance to own a share of the production the way customers own part of their local co-op.

FoFVA will reach out to all the film organizations in New Mexico, guest filmmakers, and online submission from all over for Quirky View segments to make a fully collaborative endeavor. Professionals in all areas will be brought in to mentor and keep the production running as members learn what needs to be done.

FoFVA is celebrating 10 years by leaping into uncharted territory to demystify the film industry and make it accessible to people who might not have another way to learn, hands-on. This first year maybe a rough one, but it will be full of surprises and wonderful adventures into cooperative productions.

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FreshABQ- A New Way to Look at Food

FreshABQ may not be a household name yet, but it will be. This innovated venture by Chef Jon Young of Corrales, New Mexico will soon be on everyone lips and their stomachs. It’s not just a food truck; it’s a food revolution on wheels. FreshABQ stands out from the crowd by offering a dine-in experience in a mobile setting. Cooking with only the freshest ingredients, as local as possible, FreshABQ is embracing sustainable, green living while remaining community focused.

FreshABQ began as an idea in Chef Young’s mind. Watching the food truck revolution spread across this nation, he wanted to bring people to their cuisine in style. The plan formed when he and his wife, Melissa Young, found the old KOB News 1955 Twin Motor Coach bus just sitting outside Socorro, New Mexico, not being used. With a vision, few could have seen, and a skill set to make it happen, the Youngs and their mechanic, Micah Black-Garcia, towed, the vintage bus up to Corrales and began renovations. The touring bus is in the process of going from a rusty hollowed out shell to a food bistro on wheels with seating for twelve. The bus will be themed after the famous Orient Express and will take its passengers on tantalizing food adventures.

During the month, the bus will go from a fresh food truck menu to Epicurean Chef’s dinners in different locations around New Mexico. What better way to bring the land and its food together in one place?  ARCA, a private not-for-profit organization, will supply most of the fresh produce. They employ over 600 jobs for developmentally disabled children and adults and organically grown food here in New Mexico. “Giving back to the community, and sustainably sourced food is important to FreshAbq,” says Chef Young. “We want people to know what’s in their food, where it comes from, and how it was prepared.”

In the future, Chef Young and his wife envision taking FreshABQ even further, by taking the bus and its passengers out to locally source their food themselves. “It’s important to see each step in the process to truly appreciate your dining experience,” shared Young.  New Mexico has many unique food options available, and FreshABQ wants to take you to them all.  Visit http://www.supportfreshabq.com and find out how you can help bring this dream to life.

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Behind a 48 film

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.

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The Hillerman Legacy Continues

911860.spiderwomansdaughterJournalist, 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.


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New Mexico Film Conference

New Mexico Film Conference, held over two days at the Albuquerque Hotel, was not at all what I was expecting. Walking in, the Breaking Bad Tour RV is sitting out front, enticing people to go for a ride. You have a sales pitch to the visitors on why to film in New Mexico. Once inside, vendors line the wall for any production assistance you may need, and the ones you haven’t thought of. Panel discussion are separated from the masses in smaller comfortable rooms. Being a novice to films, I might just learn something here, and learn I did.

I sat in on the taxation panel to start with. I learned the ins and outs from how to set up your production company to what qualifies and what doesn’t. The most important thing I took away from this panel was if you even have an idea that you might want to make a film here in New Mexico, contact the New Mexico Film Office and they will be a great resource for you.

Back out on the floor, I talk to people set up at different tables from schools to equipment rentals. With a warm smile, I am told about the Media Arts Collaborative Charter School in Albuquerque dedicate to digital development. From films to video games, they teach children the regular academics and more, with small class sizes. Another table gives me price list for renting a soundstage at Nob Hill Studios. Yet another table gives me a price list and details on how to rent camera equipment in New Mexico. You can plan your budget right here in the hotel, and if you’re still not sure, there will be a panel on budget planning happening as well.
The final key to why this conference should be a must for anyone interested in film is the social groups that attend. I met some lovely ladies from Women in Film New Mexico. The name may be misleading since you can be a member as a male also. This group helps writers, actors, and many others, find a community network of people to help you hone your craft and maneuver the sea that is film. They have monthly meetings in Santa Fe and Albuquerque. There were also groups from Roswell Film Festival and a Dark Matters horror film festival coming up here in Albuquerque.

The conference answered questions I didn’t previously even know to ask. The panels were made up of well-educated people, dedicated to helping us all understand the laws and the hurdles of filming in New Mexico. We will be following up in later articles with some of the key speakers from this year’s conference, so for those who thought making a movie or being a part of one was out of reach, will find out that you can make it happen right here at home.

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ArtBar Albuquerque

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.

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Poor Peoples Flowers Irene Blea

bleacover (2)By Winter Flack

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

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Christian Kane

So what do a little grey horse, a lawyer for demons, and a criminal turned good have in common? The one and only, actor-singer-songwriter, Christian Kane. We had a chance to catch up with one of our favorite bad boys turned good at the premier of 50 to 1. The story of the amazing crooked footed New Mexico horse that won the Kentucky Derby in 2009. The movie chronicles how the New Mexican cowboys made a long shot dream come true. Christian portrays Mark Allen, one of the owner/trainers of the horse, and was here in Albuquerque for the premier.

Christian first appeared on the Hollywood scene in a show called Fame L.A., which was based off the popular 80’s TV show, Fame. The show was short-lived, but that didn’t stop Christian from charging forward. He had left the University of Oklahoma, with only 15 credit hours to go, in order to pursue his dream in acting. By his own admission, he spent more time studying booze and women then art history while he was there. “School was a character study for me.” Kane says with a smile.

He landed a few small roles in movies before he getting one of the key roles for his career, and one that he will always be remembered for. Lindsey McDonald, attorney extraordinaire for Wolfram and Hart, the largest demonic attorneys office in L.A. and around the world in Joss Whedon’s Angel. Kane thinks Lindsey was such a fan favorite because he was a bad guy with a conscious. Throughout the show, the human lawyer to the demons struggled with his role, sometimes trying to kill the vampire with a soul and sometimes helping him. “Do you know how fun it is to go to work everyday and try to kill your best friend.” Kane says with a laugh, speaking of David Boreanaz, who played Angel. Kane found himself in another defining role a short time later with Leverage. Playing Eliot Spencer, the muscle of the team on the show. Kane gets to demonstrate not only amazing hand-to-hand combat skills in this role, but also a softer, deeper side to his character. He jokes and said he modeled Eliot after B.A. Baracus from The A-Team. “Everyone on set would be like, ‘Oh, you’re doing Clint Eastwood?’ and I would explain, “No, I’m doing B.A. Baracus. They’re all as old as me, so they knew who he was.” Kane jokes.

Thanks to that little known show, Fame L.A., Kane got a taste for singing. In his hometown, there were a lot of talented musician and singer, like Garth Brooks, and Kane never thought his talent measured up. After singing on TV, he found a passion for singing he couldn’t deny. “We use to play the Viper Room (in L.A.) for women and whiskey,” Kane says fondly. His passion for music made it hard for him to turn it into a business, like acting, but he has been successful at it nonetheless. There was a point where the Rock ’n Roll lifestyle got a little out of hand for him and his band mates, but they have pulled it back together and balanced it out. Kane is proud to be a singer/songwriter and says if you give him a title to one of his songs, he’ll give you a story behind it. All the songs he writes are from the heart and the few he doesn’t deeply resonate with him. He loves both his career choices and has no plans to sacrifice one for the other anytime soon.

Kane shared that it was great to be back in New Mexico. Ten years ago, Kane and Skeet Ulrich shot a little movie in Santa Fe called Into The West with Steven Spielberg. They became fast friends on the set and have talked off and on over the years but this would be the first time they had seen each other since Santa Fe. “It was another relationship that I wouldn’t have to work hard on for this movie.” Kane’s character and Ulrich’s characters are best friends in 50 to 1. This movie was great to shoot and required very little acting from Kane. When he arrived in New Mexico he sat down with Mark Allen himself. Having read the script, Kane wanted to hear the story straight from the horse’s mouth, and he got it. “We [Mark Allen] opened a bottle of Patron, and about ten minutes in, I realized I didn’t have to act. I can show up and be myself. We don’t fall far from the same tree, me and him.”

With a grin, Kane says he never talks about pending projects that are coming down the pipeline. “If I told ya, I’d have to kill ya,” Kane says jokingly. “I don’t talk about or get excited about projects until we roll film, it’s just the way it is, but I do have something coming.” Kane did talk about a project he just wrapped called Allstars with Fred Willard and shared how he ruined every take laughing at the ad lib Willard would provide. “He is the King of making things up,” says Kane. “His delivery is so good, I’m laughing the whole time.”

When asked what legacy he wanted to leave behind, Kane shared three things he felt were worthy of being carved into a tombstone.
Number one: Early in his career he was taught how to be a cowboy by Tom Selleck [in Crossfire Trail].
Number two: He got to play Robert Duval [in Secondhand Lions].
Number three: He got to work with Calvin Borel on a horse [in 50 and 1].
“We are in the business of immortality,” says Kane. “So when I go, I’ll be around.”

With his acting legacy already firmly in place, and country albums in circulation, we can only wonder what Christian Kane will do next. The one thing can all rest assured in, he will look good while doing it.

New Mexico Entertainment Magazine


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Prepping for camp

So it’s time to prep for CampNanoWriMo already. I’ve got my story in mind and have begun fleshing out my characters in my head. But, this year I’m going for a completely different approach to my writing. I usually have a skyrocketing word count in the first week maybe even into the second week and then life as a way of messing with me so I miss my mark.

This year I’m going for writing the book in the first weekend of the challenge. I’ve cleared my schedule told everybody I know that I will be busily writing for the weekend. In fact I’ve shouted it from the rooftop. I will not let anything distract me the first weekend. I have other writing task and life that task that will kick in hard in the 2nd week of April, so everything depends on that first weekend.

I’m confident that if I prep characters and location before hand I will be able to finish the book in a long weekend. I’ve even got a head set so I can just to the computer. I will let you know how that works, but it’s definitely worth a try.

I wish all of you CampNanoWriMo preppers Good Luck and happy writing.

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Behind the scene with Janessa

“Meet New Mexico’s own hair designer to the stars, Janessa Bouldin. Born and raised right here in Albuquerque, Janessa has been styling hair locally for over 10 years, when she landed her first Hollywood job on Love Ranch as a nail tech, soon followed by a hair design gig on Crash. “I had no idea what I was getting into when I first signed on to film set,” said Bouldin. “But, it’s been wild ride.” It is a close knit little community to break into when you’re first starting out. The hours can be long and demanding. The locations can be down the street or across the state from day to day. The people behind the cameras need to know that they can rely on you when your in the middle of nowhere trying to get a scene done.
Janessa Bouldin: Hair Designer

Being a singled mother of three young children, Bouldin is grateful for the opportunity working on set has provided her and her children. “The film industry has given me the chance to hone and prefect my skills without having to relocate my family.” Her children are supportive of her career and are looking to the film industry for careers of their own.

Janessa has worked on all kinds of movie and televisions shows in the last few years, each with their own challenges. The smaller indie movie sets such as Blaze you out shot in Espanola NM gave her a chance to really stretch her creative muscles. She handled more work and more responsibility. “Pushing my limits is a great experience even on the days it was difficult.” On larger movies sets such as The Avengers there are new and different pressures to work coordinating so many people to be ready for each scene. No matter what is in production you are guaranteed to have some great moments and gain knew insights.

“When it comes to getting star struck, I have my moments, but the key is to remain professional at all times.” Treating everyone on set in the same caring and respectful way will instill confidence in your work. The more confidence people have in your work the more work you will get. Janessa credits her family and her mother for instilling these ideas into her at a very young age. She plans to continue on the movie sets for years to come whiling encouraging her children to follow their dreams and use their artist skills.

Without the opportunities bought into town by the film industry Janessa and many others working in that field wouldn’t be able to provide for the families the way they are now. It’s an industry that is sure to grow and improve the lives of Native New Mexicans across the state.
checkout more at: http://www.NMEntertains.com

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