To be clear, I am here on Bali at the invitation of my wife Donna, and working under the auspices of her Company, Betty Belts-Betty B doing art and project development.
One of the more well traveled people I know, where in the course of her life, she has been to so many far flung parts of the world, that one would never suspect she could learn more than she had prior to our meeting. But in fact, she has, and continues to do so. This charms me completely.
On the heels of a divorce over a decade ago from her German husband, she had been set adrift (as divorces are wont to do to us all) and had needed to re-architect her life, as well as find a place to call home, on this spinning blue marble we rocket through space on.
I hope that one day she will pen her memoirs. I think that they would instruct and inspire many people, both female and male, in the realms of Art, Design, Business, Sustainability, and Love.
Her life is testimony to her truth, and the accuracy of her decisions as well as the presence of God’s Grace.
The other day I was on the TedX site watching a talk by a woman who does “life coaching” and is well known in her genre. I was sort of appalled (and grieved inside) by her presentation. It was not what she was saying. That part was well constructed, delivered and engaging. It was that something was wrong elsewhere. In a brief series of searches I saw it. A lonely, disconnected life, where happiness was pronounced as being rooted to a love of alcohol and a dog. Yet there she was.
My friend and colleague Dr. Ed Brenegar, is working on a book based on the stories we tell ourselves. This would be a good example of someone doing that, and turning it into a business model.
His lecture series “Reclaiming the Real” is fantastic. You can get the study links here.
That is what we all seek: our truth-reality. To me, Donna’s is an intensely honest and forthright one, though few people know what she is really all about. She seldom mentions those significant things.
Today we are in East Bali once more, and our last few days here on the island are a combination of sedate luxury while staying at a beautiful villa, and having meetings, along with time shared as husband and wife.
Donna and I have a unique relationship by US standards. When we fell in together, she had to manage the fact that some of my closest friends and colleagues are women. But that door swung both ways, as she with her global perspective, was equally close to men around the world.
I think that what makes this situation comfortable for us, is the trust that neither of us is going anywhere. We are in this together on a level that is spirit soul and body, one of the more beautiful, synergistic walks, I have ever experienced.
My Cinematography work here has involved doing a fairly nonstop run with the Canon 70D capturing stills for time lapse sequences night and day. Some shoot sequences have been as long as 10 hours. I am generally using 1 0f 4 recipes for shot frequency and lenses, and so far have amassed over 20 unique motion time lapse pieces. I am using a Canon 24-70 F2.8 L series 1 lens (An exceptionally sharp version after Canon serviced and re columnated it). As well as the Tokina 11-16 ATX pro F 2.8 series 2, which is possibly the highest resolving lens I have seen in a zoom format (It is rectalinear).
While these sequences roll and I maintain my camera position through all manner of weather, (it is the rainy season here, some of the squalls are violent, and no matter what I do, sometimes I get water drops on the lens and must clean it) I also typically have the Canon 5DM2 in hand and am working whatever my staging area is for stills, simultaneously.
The kit which I am traveling with is by far, the lightest most austere ever, in my career. A fantastic cornerstone of it is my Apple 13″ MBP which is a 2013 version (The cheapest one!) with dual 2.5 GHZ i5 processors, 16 GB of Ram and a Seagate 750GB Hybrid drive for the OS. You can purchase and build a system like mine for under 1500. B&H in NYC is a great place to do a one stop shop and buy
My entire kit this trip fits in a Ruggard topload bag! I can carry it aboard flights and it fits under the seat. (Yes, we do live in the future) My water housing and fins and a few other pieces of gear goes in my one travel duffle, and is checked in. 2 bags! Unheard of a mere 3 years ago!
I was able to get a good upload connection the other day and edited 1 of 2 pieces I plan on building while here on Bali, in order to share some of what is going on.
How I compose is really nothing special, and for this piece, since I did not bring AE, Premiere or FCP with me, I merely threw some clips and stills in a folder, had a good look at them all, uploaded to LR5, selected the music, reducted a bit, and voila, a love letter to my wife in a way, but really it is a sonnet to all of the remarkable women (and men) who do not just put up with me, but whose presence fuels a creative, albeit a possibly unusual existence.
You see, I have each of them in my edit tool set as it were, when I am composing. It feels incredible in process, because what emerges at the end, is truly a work of the heart. So what is produced is a gift to them. Sometimes it is a kiss, but the tone is seldom the same. (That is good too) But generally speaking, beauty is what I like my work to be about as it points us all in the same direction.
In a world of entropy and divisiveness, harmony matters for a culture and can be an extremely powerful force for good.
So here is my little piece which I titled: “Hey Bali”
You can click on any of the images to see full size or toggle through as a slide show.