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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Lead up to the Texas Exodus

Four days from now I leave Bend Oregon behind me. On some of my ventures, such as Chico, San Jose, and Colorado, I've left with the intention of coming back here at some point. It's my homebase, the Gotham City to my Batman. This time it's different though. This is more along the lines of the infamous Los Angeles move of 2006. There's no plan to return, no backup, no fallback, just the road ahead and whatever that may bring. Success, failure, whatever it ends up being I've no doubt it will be spectacular in fashion.

I really wanted to fly. I think that would have been amazing, and so fitting with growing up in Alaska with a pilot for a father, flying literally everywhere, even to school. Wasn't in the cards though, so I moved past it and started weighing other options. I already had this forward momentum, I'd already given myself the push, I just needed to find another avenue in which to put forth my efforts. So I did a mental inventory of the things I love, to see if perhaps one of them would hold some monetary benefit for me. After heartbreakingly realizing I would never be a professional Call of Duty player nor a high paid Wet T-shirt contest judge, it seemed so simple. Film, movies, television, documentaries, MEDIA. I've loved movies since I was a kid, and beyond just enjoying a good film, I started getting into cinematography and editing and all the behind the scenes processes at a young age, finding it fascinating. So, film school entered my brain as a possible outlet.

Now I just had to figure out where. Well, if you are going to study film and try to get involved in the industry, there's a few standard places to get your education, being Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and San Francisco. I'm sure there are good film schools elsewhere, I'm just pointing out the hotspots. Then it hit me, what about Austin Tx? I'd been reading about it for years on the various nerdy film sites I frequent, and it seemed to be a film geek mecca, so I put in some research. The more I read and viewed and talked to people, the more I became convinced I could do well there. They have a thriving film community, with festivals such as SXSW taking place there annually, and many filmmakers are choosing Austin as not just a place to shoot and produce, but to live and work there as well. So I found a school that offers a DVCP (Digital Video Certificate Program) thats been around for a while and is respected as well as connected to the film community in Austin. I went down mid May with my sister on a scouting trip, spent a week taking in the city and the people and the school, seeing how everything fit. It was awesome. Despite the trip itself being a nightmare of everything going wrong, the city still shone through at the end of it all as a place I could see myself waking up everyday. Not to mention Austin is one of the 'most tattooed' cities in the U.S., and many waiters and servers at upscale restaurants and bars had hand and neck ink as well as plugs, so getting a decent job shouldn't be a problem. It's a friendly, laid back city, like a really big Bend with more culture, or parts of East Portland. Oh, and their city motto is "Keep Austin Weird"...serendipitous huh?

Four days from now I leave Bend Oregon behind me. There's so much to miss I can't even list it all here. I'll try to write another post, a Bend retrospective, but it's all going to be so fresh and raw I don't even know if I'll bother for a while.

Austin Marsh is coming with me! The WeezIll, one of the original Weirdie Five, has decided that it's time for him to leave Bend for new and different things as well, and when he heard me talking about ATX he said "Why not." Or something to that effect. So that's pretty awesome, even more so because it's so easy to make Austin-Austin jokes. I'd be doing this even if I was doing it solo, but I can't lie and say it doesn't feel a hundred times easier to be doing it all with one of my best friends by my side, helping watch out for my dumb ass, a cross country wingman.

Get ready Texas, Austin is about to get a lot weirder.

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