I had an epiphany about color vs. black and white while watching Burn Notice. If you don’t know about the show, you should check it out. It’s like this decades A-Team/Remington Steele. A spy disavowed by his agency helps a new needy “client” each week. It’s mindless TV fun at its best. Action and explosions with nary an individual getting hurt. But I digress. I’ve read all of these books about how some people prefer black and white over color because black and white has more interesting contrast, shading, and grayscale gradients. These books talked about how filmmakers of the past would use red lights and yellow lights to create different shades of gray on film. If you saw the scene lit in real life, it would look like a bad acid trip. But because all those colored lights turned to shades of gray on film, it just created an interesting play of contrast and grayscale. As a filmmaker that grew up in a world of color tv, where I Love Lucy reruns were annoying because they didn’t have color, I’ve always felt too young to really appreciate black and white. And if I had the choice, I would have always chosen color. I mean, why would you choose mono audio over stereo? Strangely, I’ve always appreciated black and white photography but having never seen the same photograph in color and B&W side by side, I’ve never had a true understanding of the differences.
But then while watching the season 4 episode of Burn Notice “Made Men”, a fade from color to B&W hit me like a ton of bricks and I finally get what people say about B&W. See, all the reading that I had done was too cerebral. They were all just wordy explanations using high falutin art words. But what I saw on TV just got to me on an intuitive level.
To me, the color picture has so much detail that your eye doesn’t pick out shapes. Your eye is draw more to colors and individual items as opposed to seeing the composition as a whole. The best example of this is the big red siren on the cop car in the foreground. In the color picture, you have white and red against a brownish gray street. The red pops out and draws your focus to the car. In the B&W version, the gray of the siren almost matches the street and it draws less attention. Your eye is able to focus on the true subject which are the four characters in silhouette. In the B&W picture, the car at the bottom, the white water at the top, and the dark under exposed side of the street on the right of the picture create a frame for our subjects. All of these work together to draw your eye to the silhouettes and make a much more interesting composition. Even the silhouettes pop out more in B&W because they are a pure black against at lighter background. In the color version, the legs of the woman and the white shirt of the guy to the right of her get a little lost against the brownish gray street. This is probably what all the experts mean when they talk about better contrast in B&W. Overall, B&W made for a stronger and more distinct composition. And there in a nutshell is my epiphany on B&W.
The name of my film is back to Beyond the Mat. Originally, the movie I’m producing was called Beyond the Mat but because there’s a WWE documentary from 1999 of the same name, we were advised to change our title to something else. After much debate and consternation, we changed it to Nearfall. When we started the project back in 2006, only seven years after the documentary, it made sense that there might be confusion in the marketplace. But we’ve always retained a fondness for our original name and now that things have picked up for the movie again, we’ve decided that a decade is enough water under the bridge and to rename our film Beyond the Mat.
Here’s a quick update. WE HAVE DISTRIBUTION! It’s a small company call Catch22. We’ll be their first theatrical release but we have some Hollywood Heavy Hitters on the team. I can’t disclose who they are yet but there should be a Variety article coming out in the near future.
Finally, the other big news is that we have signed on our polishing editor. He’s the Academy Award winner, Scott Conrad editor of the original Rocky. Maybe you’ve heard of it. I remember when we first started this film, we kept referencing Rocky and how we wanted to be the next classic sports film. No one would have thought that by the end of this long and arduous journey that we’d actually be working with the editor of that seminal sports movie. Ask anyone for their top 5 sports movies and chances are Rocky will be on that list. Scott Conrad helped create the modern sports movie genre. Now he’s putting his skill and talent into MY sports movie. Isn’t that crazy? Never in the wildest dreams of a first time filmmaker would we ever think this was a possibility.
Here’s a brief update on some other things. The legal issue with the film was recently settled and that took a huge burden off of my chest. Because of the lawsuit and the cash issues that it caused, I had to get a day job. I started working at a marketing company whose main client is Suzuki. Then the economy fell apart and the auto industry was slapped across the face with cutbacks. My company was no exception. I got put to part time status at only 12 hours a week. We the freelancing needed to make ends meet, the lawsuit, and a mountain of debt; I was in no mood to work on Beyond the Mat. That’s also why I stopped writing. But all that is over now. I’ve been back to full time since May 1st. We got the finishing funds we need for our film. The lawsuit is completely over. I’ve paid off all of my legal fees. We’ve picked up distribution. And we even have some guest celebrities appearing in our film. We shot pickups with Ken Shamrock a few months ago and we are finalizing our contract with Kurt Angle to film at the end of July.
Van the director has been stressed about scheduling and I have been having trouble motivating myself through all the tribulations, but I’m feeling like I’m getting back into the groove. It’s time for me to rally to troops and get this baby done.
A: when you say hi to a girl and she responds “hey you” what do you think that means?
B: in what context?
in real life?
do you know her?
A: hmm texting
B: just hollaring?
A: i do
like we talked for a bit
but non committal
A: and recently
saying that do you think it’s playful?
A: i feel it’s more distant
B: depends on the girl
like she’s not being formal
so maybe shows a level of comfort
or it could be distant
B: but depends on your feeling
A: but going from “hey” to “hey you” seems weird no?
B: going from hi to hey you
or hey to hey you
cause hey to hey you seems natural
A: but why add the “you”?
i mean obviously the hey is directed at me
im trying to decide if it’s a flirty response or a keep my distance response
i think so
A: would you respond to a girl with “hey you”?
i have before
it’s casual, playful
A: it’s an odd response
i’ve never had a girl really say that
B: i don’t think so
i think it’s fairly common
A: haha damn i need to get out more
B: yeah you do
…i’m going to remove your name and post this on fb
[…yes, guys really do have conversations like this]
So I’ve been MIA for awhile. But it’s been for a good reason. I had a girlfriend and she was taking up most of my time. But now I’ve been cured of that. She broke up with me the other night. Below is a list of things people have told me to try and help me get over it. Some are better than others…
i can say you’ll everything will be ok. but what ever i say isn’t going to make you feel better. it’s just gonna have to take time to get over it. — PT
OMG. DONT BE SO GAY. — LC
and how does this make you feel? — JC
that sucks man — YK
so you’re gonna be single this weekend then. nice. — JS
maybe the story isn’t finished. let her go. and she will realize that u were the best. and u should try to move on too. and in the guture when she realizes that u are the best. she will come back — JL
I was faced with a tough decision this past week as I strolled through the local drug store. I was in the condom aisle and was confronted with over 40 different condoms to choose from: ribbed, lubricated, polyurethane, etc. I prefer the ultra thin kind but even that didn’t narrow down my selection. To top it off, there were two new models that must have just come on the market. I was stuck between my tried and true workhorse the Trojan Ultra Thin latex condom and one of these newfangled options. What to do? What to do? So I did what EVERY hot-blooded guy with a blog would and bought all three to do an in depth comparison test. Here are my finding. Please enjoy because the tests for this post were the most tiring three minutes of my life.
Trojan Ultra Thin
Width: 2 in
Length: 7.6 in
Thickness: 0.0024 in
Lubrication: Water Based
Special Features: Reservoir Tip
“Our Thinnest Latex Condoms Ever!“
“For Ultimate Sensitivity”
- Thinnest TROJAN Latex Condom — Designed for a more natural feeling
- Over 25% Thinner than Standard Condoms
- Made from Premium Quality Latex — To help reduce the risk
- Low Latex Odor
- Special Reservoir End — For extra safety
These are my tried and true stand bys. They’re thinner and transmit more sensation than regular latex condoms. I can’t say they give that nothing but skin feeling but it’s a good deal closer. One of the big bonuses is that they don’t give off that funky latex smell.
Better than regular condoms. Do I really have to do this? I’m so embarrassed.
Microsheer Polyurethane Condom
Width: 2.25 in
Length: 7.87 in
Thickness: .0015 in
Special Features: Reservoir Tip
“Ultimate Sensual Pleasure!”
These condoms didn’t have the same texture as regular latex condoms. They felt a little harder/rigid and not as stretchy or flexible. They definitely felt thinner than the ultra thin latex condoms and in my opinion were able to transfer more sensation through to my skin. I felt like the condoms could have had a little more lubricant on them but you can always buy extra. And although it didn’t feel as good as nothing at all, these condoms came closer than the Ultra-Thin latex condoms.
The Supra had a more plasticky (is that a word?) feeling which resulted in friction. Which …is a good thing.
New Polyisoprene Material
Width: 2.13 in
Length: 7.48 in
Thickness: 0.0028 in
Special Features: Reservoir Tip
“Closest thing to wearing nothing”
- New SKYN condoms provide a softer, more natural feel and have been clinically proven to enhance sensation.
- Combines the strength of premium latex with the sensitivity of an ultra thin condom for that Skyn-to-Skyn sensation.
- Long-lasting, ultra smooth lubricant enhances the experience
- Technologically advances Polyisoprene material that is strong and sensitive.
At .oo28”, these are actually as thick as regular condoms. The polyisoprene material had a more natural supple feeling to it. Maybe it’s the stuff they make sex toys out of. I’d say they feel better than regular condoms and the material definitely transfer sensation better than polyurethane. But because of the thickness, I still liked the polyurethane better. If they made these in ultra-thin, I think they’d be the clear wiener. (hehe, I’m punny.)
Seemed thinner than a regular condom even though it wasn’t. There wasn’t as much sensation as the Polyurethane Supra but way better than a regular condom. I hate you for making me do this and I hate your blog.
And the winner is:
My new go-to work horse. Actually when I started looking online for specs on condoms, I kept seeing sites recommend these Japanese brands, “Beyond Seven” and “Crown Skinless Condom”. So I guess I’ll withhold my true decision until I’ve tried those. But on another note, I have a rant:
Who the hell buys regular condoms anymore? I don’t understand why they just don’t make ultra-thin condoms and call THEM regular? Who are these people? “Hi, I’d like a box of your thickest condoms please. Actually, can I just get a plastic grocery bag? I don’t like to feel ANYTHING when I’m having sex.” I mean seriously, it’s either that or these people are having sex with the skeeziest sluts on earth and are super scared of catching an STD. To me, using regular condoms is like playing Counter-strike with oven mitts on. You can mash on the controls and maybe win a game or two. But in the end, you’d be better off just playing with yourself.