In Articles, Behind the scenes, Personal Project, Projects

DEEP IN A DREAM. A song originally by Bob Crosby and His Orchestra, which fell into the hands of many legendary artists after that, specifically, Frank Sinatra — and I completely fell in love with his version. The pacing is much slower and intimate than the original, not that the original was bad, but when I looked at the lyrics of Deep in a Dream, I resonated closer to Sinatra’s version.

When it came down to pre-production and planning, I started to feel a hint of anxiety and pressure. This happens quite often, especially when handling personal projects. I don’t stress much over my client’s work unless its a huge challenge, but the stress I feel with my personal projects stems from an extreme pressure to feel accomplished with it. Last year, I was notorious for starting projects and never finishing. I would start something with high ambitions and visions, but then very quickly get disappointed and scrap it altogether. Having high expectations and standards for yourself is a double-edged sword — With a mindset like that, you get stuff done, well and efficiently, but you also run into the possibility of being disappointed in yourself and your hard work.

As it came time to create the storyboard / shotlist, I struggled trying to visualize the song. I listened to it over and over to try to see it in my head, but it didn’t work. This is something that came so easily to me as a kid, and so the more I forced myself to see the story, the more I felt defeated. I ended up pouring myself a glass of pinot noir and from there, I got straight to it. I think something switched — not saying it’s the wine that got me to where I needed to be, but I think it was just approaching it self a ‘fuck-it’ attitude. I just listened to the song for what it was, and tried to relate the story to myself, as it’s something I am familiar with. Finding common ground or relatability is key to story telling, people like to feel included or as if they can relate to the story. Deep in a Dream is me. It was me one night in December of last year. And a few days in February of this year. Deep in a Dream was you at some point, too. Deep in a Dream is loving someone so deeply, and due to the circumstances of life, selflessly letting them go, but feeding off of the ghost of them more and more as each day without them passes. It’s coming home from somewhere that felt like magic but getting snapped back into reality the minute you settle down in your room. So you escape to that fantasy of what was or what could’ve been, because there is no stronger drug or addiction in this world than that of love.

Deep in a Dream was an extremely vulnerable project. Not only was I in front of the camera for it, but the narrative itself was sensitive. I was so confident in the idea behind it, but when you are the one telling the story and acting it out, it’s a little nerve-wracking.

I wasn’t necessarily disappointed with my project as a whole, but there are some technical aspects that could have been tightened up. If I could do this project all over again, I would get some more light in the room with more diffusion, as well as a camera operator highly experienced in the position that doesn’t have shaky hands. I was running on a tight schedule when it came to shoot day. Rented gear from Valenti and Photo Source Rental, as well as purchasing props from Amazon. It felt so professional and real, and it felt great knowing I was spearheading it as well. The plan was to shoot from 5-10PM. We got all the shots needed, but I think some could have been shot better, and that the lighting could’ve been more consistent throughout. I also need to learn how to light a scene for wide shots along a flat wall to add more dimension, I felt like I lost that in the wide shots.

All in all, I am extremely proud of the way my project turned out. It felt good to take an idea and execute it to the best of my abilities. I’m learning so much with every bit of experience I get. I’m extremely thankful for those who helped me as well:
Nate and Charles Taylor, Sophia Primera, Monica Mariano, Alyssa Flores & Ibrahim Martinez. <3

I hold Deep in a Dream close to my heart, and am thankful for everything I learned from that.

To view Deep in a Dream, click here.


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