Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The MED - "Baby" - 30-Second TV Voice Over

There's a link in the right-hand side bar to my YouTube channel, so I rarely post anything on the blog itself about my current work, but this one deserves some attention. This commercial is for The MED (Regional Medical Center) of Memphis and is one element of a three-part campaign.

I especially like that, even though it was not part of the original project, the producer wanted to try to keep my voice for the sake of continuity, so he requested that I retain the gravely quality of my delivery, but with a warmer, more gentle approach. This was the result.

It's always a pleasure to be part of excellent production, and these spots produced by Peter Zavadil of Taillight TV are exquisite. My thanks to Peter for his excellent direction, to Anthony Stubelek of Studio 184 in Brunswick, Georgia for his thoughtful expertise in recording the voice overs, and to my good friend and agent Carol Rathe of GoVoices in Denver.

If it's true that "you're only as good as your most recent work," then I'm kind of proud of this and the other spots for The MED, but I'm always up for the next opportunity.

(You can click on the "full screen" icon to enlarge the video to full screen width.)

Friday, February 3, 2012

Into the Senyas Ashrama

As a writer, producer and director with eighteen years in an advertising agency environment, as well as at least as many years in film and video production and the performing arts, I chose to depart from traditional consumer product marketing.

While there will always be a place for conscientious and creative marketing of useful products, I was burned out on trying to sell more stuff to people who neither needed nor could afford more stuff, stuff that seldom made any contribution to anyone's quality of life. Instead, I have committed my talents, vision and mindfulness to working with people and organizations involved in the products, practices and services that enhance spiritual awareness, enrich the human experience, and perhaps help save us from extinction.

While I do not pretend to be enlightened, I have awakened to the knowledge that we humans are the conscious expression of Creation, the Universe becoming aware of its self. We stand upon a mountaintop of evolution and from this lofty place in the middle of eternity, we have the sole purpose of kindling a light in the darkness of mere being.
What I do...
• I conceive, write and execute award-winning, strategic marketing campaigns for organizations involved in environmental preservation, adventure travel and self-exploration and spiritual growth.
• I write, produce and direct video and film projects, particularly those which focus on environmental preservation, sustainable products and practices, and tourism.
• I am a voice and on-camera talent with exceptional professional representation and an international clientele.
• I am an outdoor photographer and writer of indefatigable energy and adventurous spirit. My work has been purchased and published by Kodak and licensed by National Geographic.
• Being drawn to wide, wild, windswept and mountainous places, I recently completed a six-month assignment with the National Outdoor Leadership School, the largest outdoor education institution in the world. NOLS' classroom is the wilderness and it is committed to sustainable practices, both in the field and throughout the organization.
• In my work for NOLS, I attained a CDL with passenger and air brake endorsements, and I drove over 10,000 miles, safely transporting students, provisions and gear over dusty desert roads, winding mountain passes and rocky one-lane tracks high above the snow line to wilderness trail heads. Through that experience, combined with my lifelong work as a producer of major video productions and live events, and as a voice and on-camera talent, I now possess a singularly unique logistics and live production skill set.

In moving into this senyas ashrama of life, I believe that our best hope of survival as a species begins, not only with practical skills, but with mindfulness and personal awareness. Toward enhancing that awareness and accompanying others on the path toward enlightenment is where I wish to focus whatever light I may kindle.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Images from a Western Odyssey

In May 2011, I accepted a six-month assignment with the National Outdoor Leadership School in Lander, Wyoming and the Teton Valley of Idaho. NOLS is the largest outdoor education institution in the world, it's classroom is the wilderness, and the school is committed to sustainable practices in every aspect of its operations. I immeasurably benefited from my six-month immersion into that culture and came away with significant new skills in my armamentarium of abilities.

While driving nearly 10,000 miles across the wide, wild, windswept, mountainous places where NOLS conducts its mission, I had a few opportunities to make photos. A collection of images from my travels with NOLS, the return journey across America and images from other travels can be seen on Panoramio, the Google Earth image repository featuring over three hundred of my photos -

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Conversation with God

This still shot of me was taken during filming of the 2010 season promo for Bone Collector on the Outdoor Channel. In the promo, I played a homeless man who is taught to fend for himself with a bow and arrow. During a lull in the filming, however--in a few moments that seemed surreally suspended in time--I had an encounter with an actual homeless person that is indelibly etched in my memory.

The director and crew were across the street, discussing the next scene with the three principals of Bone Collector who were in a large, black truck with tinted windows. They were obscured by the truck and, because we were mostly using natural light, there wasn't a lot of production equipment in view.

From where I was sitting by myself on an overturned milk crate, next to my stereotypical shopping cart prop, waiting for the shooting to resume, I watched the old, bedraggled man come around the corner and make his way along the sidewalk toward me, pushing a two-wheeled cart loaded with all his belongings. I confess my discomfort that he would ask me for money or engage me in conversation. Instead, he walked past me without speaking.

Then, as he was crossing the street, he turned back and asked, "Are you hungry? I have some food that you can have." I told him that I was fine, but he persisted, "It's okay. If you're hungry, I'll feed you." Again, I told him that I would be okay. He reluctantly said, "Well, if you're sure," and started to walk away. Then, turning back again, he called out, "You need to get out of this town. They don't give a damn about homeless people here." With that said, he turned away, walked off down the street and disappeared around a corner. A moment later, the director emerged from behind the truck, the crew reappeared and shooting resumed as if nothing had happened.

What does that say? Here was the outcast, untouchable, unseen man possessing almost none of the things with which our society measures itself, yet he was prepared to share his modest food supply with me while unknowingly admonishing me for my own lack of mindfulness.

It was a conversation with God that I will never forget. It altered my perceptions and my life’s path.

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
                                                                              ~ Elizabeth Kübler-Ross

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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

TV and Radio Commercials Demo

Narration Demo

Character Voice Demo

Sports-Related Voice Demo

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Test Shot for Location Photo Shoot

One of the benefits of working both sides of the camera is that, when I direct a photo shoot, I'm often the stand in for the actual subject of the photos. This was a test shot by my friend and outdoor photographer Jerry Christensen on a December 2009 photo shoot.

Friday, October 2, 2009

All In Good Taste on HGTV

For three years, I co-hosted the HGTV program All In Good Taste, a cooking show that aired in the mid-to-late 1990's. This is a very brief excerpt from an episode on Pizza which at least gives an idea of production values. Jerry Smith of Pinewood Television in Jacksonville, Florida produced the show for HGTV and made certain that the food was the star of the show. This was before cooking shows became dominated by personalities. Curiously, I was selected as the co-host because I had a gregarious on-camera personality and because I knew food and how to prepare it.

My co-host was Lisa Valdini with whom I also worked on other unrelated projects while I lived in Florida. The show was a very positive experience which I immensely enjoyed.
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