The other day I was thinking about an online video series I make where I act as two characters, one guy named Flattie, whom wears an obnoxious flat-billed hat and wants to be an actor, and another guy named Glasses, whom is a designer. They are my split personalities and they are not. They are a means for me to practice acting, writing, editing, and short-filmmaking by myself, as my schedule as a freelance Art Director/Designer affords me some down time, from time to time. But the series has become so much more than that.
However, on more than one occasion, I've thought about not making it anymore. To move on. To focus on bigger things, bigger pictures, bigger stories. On many levels, I have. But to no longer delve into the world of Flattie and Glasses, that has crossed my mind many times. And the other day, as I was doing who knows what, like we all tend to do, I realized I just needed to make one that was unlike the other ones.
The only way to maintain excitement in making things repeatedly is to keep changing the way in which you make them, correct? I've read important folks talk about the creative process and how if it becomes monotonous or stale or predictable, so will the work. Being wrong is Right, I've heard, and I couldn't agree more. I don't want to know the solution, because the solution is only a result of past successes, and those are exactly that, PAST successes. I'd rather fail in new things than succeed in old things.
So I decided to be wrong. I wanted to fully address the struggle that goes into making any product and keeping an investment in that product. The doubt that festers inside the maker of the product, if the product is not as successful as the maker would have hoped.
'Is this worthwhile? Do we have something with this product? Or is it just another flash in the pan, a valiant effort at something, but ultimately, just another oh-well's to be tossed in the trash?'
Writing the following episode was quick and easy. Acting in it was a bit more difficult than usual. Getting angry and frustrated while looking at doorknobs and empty places where another man's face should be becomes a bit taxing after awhile. I'm doing myself a disservice acting with nothing all the time, as achieving believe-ability is extremely difficult with other actors present, choosing to react against nothing only makes it tougher. Plus I really don't know 'how' to act anyway. Just turn the camera on and see what happens. That's my acting class. (That just gave me an idea...Save that for later)
But as I wrap up the 30th some-odd video in my almost two-year long-ongoing series of 'Hangin' with Justins,' I find that the fellas still surprise me with where they want their story to go. Because it is going somewhere, faithful viewer, of this I am certain.
I doubt this new episode 'The (Fake) End' will get many laughs, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It came directly from my heart, and sometimes my heart doesn't care to laugh.
I look forward to the next time I sit down to hang with the fellas. As long as someone, somewhere, laughs at some point while watching these, then I will always consider them a success. Hopefully you see a little of yourself in one of the fellas (gross) or maybe you just enjoy watching a moron wear small clothes, dumb hats, or sometimes dance poorly.
Enjoy an experiment.