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Friday, December 30, 2011

Virginia Trip Today

So today is my trip down to Virginia to shoot more of Kane Mayfield's upcoming music video. It is going to be a very simple yet pretty cool little video we are putting together. So far from what we have from NY I am pretty happy so we should be able to get more great stuff today. We are staying pretty late so today when we get down there we are going to check into a hotel and then stay overnight. However we should be back tomorrow hopefully by early afternoon. I am not sure what is going to happen though because I kind of have work tomorrow and knowing how late we are going to be up tonight we might not be up any time soon tomorrow. I hope all goes well with the trip though. Well gotta run and start getting ready.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Got the Computer Back but...

So last night I got my new computer build back again from my friend. I had to give it back to him because I was having major issues with it. Now when I booted it up last night everything was fine well for a while. I installed what I needed to have for video purposes such as VLC player, Quicktime player, etc. I also downloaded AVG and Advanced Systemcare. Normal stuff going on there and then I finally got my Adobe Production Premium CS5 in and I was hoping to get it started on this build. First time I tried installing it no luck, next time same thing, and now this morning I got all the way to the final disc and surprise surprise it froze up again. At this point I am getting a little frustrated with the situation.

The guy who I had build it finished it the first time and gave it to me, it kept freezing up..ok a minor kink in the hardware it is all good. This time he gave it back to me, said he had it running for 8 hours no problem I get it back last night less than 3 hours in while installing programs I already get a freeze. I even had the system lock up when I was on the internet today just surfing the web. I mean this set up is a 1500 dollar beast designed for editing and yet it is freezing while I am on the internet? Come on this shouldn't be happening. It looks like I am going to have to send it out to him for a third time because I simply can't get it to work right. I let it sit last night just idling and at first it restarted itself and then at around 4am only 2 hours after I let it sit, it froze up again. So I don't know what to do at this point. All of my trial software installs on my labtop are about to expire and I have a whole other school semester coming up on the 3rd of January. Lets hope that he can fix all this before then.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Love and Sherlock Holmes

So yesterday I spent the majority of the day hanging out with a good friend of mine Joe just running around going to a few places. I got to shoot my first handgun which I sucked at from the start and then after that owned. We went to the Science Center which was awesome when I was a kid but kinda sucked now that I am older (should of expected that). Finally we saw Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows which I felt was better than the original in some regards and in others not so much.

This new film goes much further into the psyche of Holmes and decides to point out more of his quirky methods at time to the extreme for instance when he is drinking embalming fluid but other hits it right on the nose when he hates riding on the horse. I felt like the use of slow motion like in the first to show his thought process was again a very smart trick but when it was used on things such as a gun about to fire a huge explosive device it became a bit overused. The scene in the woods of them running away from the Germans was amazing and this by far was the best use of the slow motion effect in the whole film. The introduction of Moriarty was not overdone at all (as it can be in the Holmes universe) and his character was written in very well to fit the way the books had described him (he is a man who never gets his hands dirty). The ending is nothing short of a very Hollywood style but it still fits within all the workings of a Conan Doyle story. I would recommend a watch either in theaters or at home when it is on DVD. Not worth a rush to the theater really but it is still an enjoyable Sherlock Holmes film.

The other film I watched yesterday was entitled Love which is a very intensely slow drama piece about a man up in space who slowly learns he is going to be up there for a while. It can be assumed that back on Earth man is slowly killing themselves through war. At the same time there are flashbacks to a civil war soldier who is on the quest for a mysterious ship that is near the Mississippi river. Throughout the film we watch this lone mans decent into madness as he has no human interaction aboard the space station. There is no real villain in this film or not secret he really finds. It is just a slow paced strange film which is not terrible but a bit too philosophical for its own good at parts. Sometimes shots get repeated but from different angles which is excusable but the fact that these shots are shown in slow motion several times make it very apparent that we have seen them before. It comes to an end in a less than satisfactory ending and the only real way to have it make sense is if you use the excuse that he must have died. I really love the concept and the majority of the execution considering how indie this film is. I'd say if you can get past the slow pacing and the almost cheesy soundtrack from Angels and Airwaves at times it makes for a very good film. If not though stay away it is not going to pick up the pace at any point really.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Academic Superstore Sucks

So after my second order from Academic Superstore I will never shop there again. Don't get baited by the so called low prices they offer, after the order is placed they charge an arm and leg for shipping as well as sales tax, so more times than not you pay more than say a site such as Newegg. Also things that should be processed in a day never get processed at all leaving you to play the waiting game. Only after about 5 emails with them did they even ship out Adobe Production Premium CS5.5 and now I am trying to get Microsoft Office Professional which they are making a nightmare as well. Their academic verification process is a nightmare and the so called instant verification doesn't do anything. When you talk to their customer service you get a different representative every time and these people are complete idiots. They try to run you in circles to get you confused on purpose and not until you finally start yelling do they listen. Here is my story:

I ordered Adobe CS5.5 on December 3rd and by the time the 20th came to I was getting worried. I sent an email out and they told me that maybe I didn't get the confirmation that it shipped. After explaining to them that I check my email daily and it didn't just slip past me they then lied and said it shipped out the 15th according to their records. I explained how I wasn't even charged yet and then they finally fessed up that it hadn't shipped out yet. Finally after all that a lady came to and said I should be receiving shipping info on the 22nd which I did but after all that I pay for shipping it still isn't getting here until the 28th. What kind of crap is that?

Now I am trying to cancel my Microsoft order which I hope I can do. Bottom line, DON'T SHOP AT ACADEMIC SUPERSTORE!

Thank you for the support,
Daniel Hess

Monday, December 26, 2011

It is Official

So starting January 6th and continuing on every Friday from there I am going to do a weekly movie review where I pick one film opening that week and give it a nice brand spanking new review. I have always wanted to do movie reviews and doing this seems like a perfect fit. I want to start doing a simple video review and then also doing a written review as well here on the blog. So that is two reviews for the price of one. If things pick up and I get a lot of people checking out my stuff I hope to expand and also do dvd reviews every Tuesday in the future. This way I can capture the dvd and new film review market.

I hope this is as exciting to everyone else as it is to me because I can't wait to start reviewing films!

Thank you for your support,
Daniel Hess

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Well it is Christmas again and I would like to extend my best Christmas and holiday wishes to everyone out there today. I hope today goes exactly the way you want it to and it is a joyous day for you. I may be out working today but hey it is double pay and my last Christmas at Oak Crest Village I know it. From me to you may your Christmas be magical and filled with greatness.

Holiday Blessings,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, December 24, 2011

New Computer Here

So last night I was given my brand spanking new computer filled with all kinds of great new parts! I got home and let it adjust to my room temperature like I was told and started it up. It worked great, it was fast, efficient, and all that I wanted it to be. The only downside was this morning it was frozen which I couldn't figure out why and since I have been using it, it has froze up a few more times. If the problem persists I am going to talk to my friend but otherwise it may just be a little kink with the new build. So far so good and I hope it stays that way for a long while with this PC. Now just waiting to load Microsoft Office 2010 and Adobe CS5.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Friday, December 23, 2011

More of the Waiting Game

So right now it is a little frustrating but I am playing the waiting game. As of yesterday my Adobe CS5 finally shipped after getting into a little bit of an argument with the Academic Superstore people. I ordered it back on December 3rd and they said it shipped on the 15th but they didn't even charge me yet so it was impossible. After talking to like 3 different people they finally fessed up and shipped it out yesterday, so I won't be getting it until the 28th when I should have had it by now. Also I finally ordered the Microsoft Office 2010 package from them last night and I am waiting for them to process it as well, hopefully it won't take have as long as the Adobe package did.

I am also eagerly awaiting my new computer which my friend at work predicted would be ready by today, so I am praying that he got it done, I am trying not to get my hopes up that it will be done today but if it is that would be freaking sweet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have been using this labtop for like a month now and while I am used to it, having a desktop would be so great again (plus 64-bit processing!).

Other than that I am debating whether I want a Fujifilm Instax instant film camera and a part of me does but then another part of me wants to focus on getting a nice film camera like maybe some day owning a Red or something. However another part of me realizes I can just rent a great camera in all honesty. In the end I will figure it out, now it is time to round up all the bills and see what the damage is for this month.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Official Break

Well today was supposed to be the Samurai video day but my DP had to postpone again. Usually I would be pretty upset over such news but today I am actually a little relieved. This means I get a break, yes an actual real live break where I can take some time and just relax. The next time we are thinking about filming isn't until the first week in January so I am cool with that. Also yesterday my teacher was mentioning something about meeting to go over the corporate video projects but I have been in break mode so I haven't really been worried about it. Yesterday was the last day the labs were open until January 3rd so we aren't going to try to meet again until then, so I am officially off the hook for a little bit. It is a big relief to say the least.

However I still have to finish up the music video for my friend Kane Mayfield which we gotta get some more shots for and then we will be all good to go!

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Time For Change

I feel as though I have done all I can with locations in this state. I have done plenty of video work here and feel as though now is the time to move out and start bringing you new and exciting places for video work. After this trip to New York I see how a place like that can truly bring out the best in a seemingly non existant story. Having exciting locations is a nice touch to add. I want to try and film more in places like New York, Boston, Toronto, Philadelphia; places that just have a life of their own. At the same time I want to go out west and film in the desert, that is my ultimate goal.

Maybe I am just in a rut right now and I need a change of pace or maybe I just need something exciting, something truly amazing to change the way I see life. I am a dreamer so when things get old I get into a funk where I can dream no more.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Today's Rant

I am tired of seeing crap...crap that people shouldn't be making into films. I am tired of the student films, of the music videos, short films, webseries, youtube videos, etc...that are all just terrible. Film is an art, it will always be an art when you film something that is total garbage don't pass it off as good, don't send it around and say oh yeah check this video out guys. Just stop it, look at what you are making and just stop.

Oh and those of you who watch those videos and are too chicken to say that it sucks, you need to stop the most. You think you are helping out...no you are not, you are making it worse. Just tell them it sucks, if they get hurt who cares because in the long run it will help. I only got here because I had a terrible friend who constantly told me my work sucked, I would make a video he would just run around dissing it as much as he could. Did I hate it? Yes! Did it make me angry? Yes!!!!! But it made me become a better filmmaker. I feel bad for those who make a steaming pile of crap video only to have everyone tell them it is great.

Be your own critic, don't make videos because you think it is going to make you money or get you famous. Make videos because you love the art, it makes you feel something inside, it is the only way to get better and to succeed.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Monday, December 19, 2011

Focus Time

Now that I am back from a pretty crazy/draining trip it is time to focus on the next project. This Thursday I am hoping to film to my Samurai short film if everything can go as planned. I still have to do storyboards and also meet with my DP before hand to go over all that I need to do. It looks like it is going to be a predominantly night shoot starting at either 4pm or 9pm depending on the way things work out. If my actor has to work it looks like 9pm but if now the 4 to 4:30 pm. It is a pretty easy shoot but I still think things will turn out pretty sweet, if all goes according to plan. I even have a title for the piece already The Silent Samurai which is used for a slot machine game but so far it does not seem to be taken.

Not only that but I have not forgotten Love is Undead which is still in the post production stage. I retrieved the files but it is still on my Hard Drive which my friend still has. Once I get it back I will start up editing and look to have it done before the late deadline for the Maryland Film Festival.

Speaking of computers I am dropping off my old computer and new parts to get my new system built tonight after work. My friend Dan is going to take everything out of the old and fill my first tower with all new hardware. When it is all said and done I will have an editing beast! If tonight is good for anything it will be a day when I get it all done.

Finished up my final final exam today, but still have to finish my Humane Society edit for school. Don't know how my grade for that class is going to look though.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Made It Back

Well I just got back from my New York trip about two hours ago with my man Kane Mayfield. We were up there shooting some video content for an upcoming song he has which was a lot of fun. We hit a lot of big spots around New York including Times Square, PNC radio, Fader magazine, and Penn Station. It was a lot of fun but mad mad draining on the body. I got to take my first subway ride which at first was a little nerve wracking since I never did if before but after a few times I got the hang of it. Also I got to take my first New York taxi cab ride through the city which was fun because cabs have a cool little tv in the back with trivia questions and cool things like that. You can also pay by credit now which was pretty sweet.

We got up there at a little after noon because the bus was some crappy thing from way back when and the driver kept having to pull to the side to let it reset itself. The way back was a breeze but we had to wait from about 3 am to 6:30 am before we got the next Megabus back home. We spent the time in Dunkin Donuts which is a very interesting place at night in New York. We were at a party before that for some big name producers at PNC radio which was cool because I got to here their beats and that went on from about 8:30pm to 1:30am. I was really tired at that point so I just laid down as much as could in the other rooms away from the party.

I didn't even mention the most amazing meal of my life in New York. After hours of shooting at around 3 or 4pm we finally went to get something to eat at this pizza place. It was $10.30 for two slices of pepperoni pizza and a big water, but it was so worth it because I was starving. The whole thing was like eating a little bit of heaven and I haven't felt that good about a meal since after like MayhemFest 3 years ago or however long that was. I had a blast in New York and it was just as much of a vacation as it was work but I was glad I worked up the courage to go. Thanks again to Kane Mayfield for showing me all the hot spots and making this video run real smooth so far.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Today is the Trip

So as of right now it is almost 6 am and I am getting everything ready for my trip up to New York. I am catching the megabus at 8:15 and will be there at around 11:35am. It is a video shoot day as well as a big meeting day for the artist I am riding up with. It is sure to be an exciting time just hate that is the middle of winter, it is going to be freezing up there. I just gotta bundle up and shoot some video content. Got more packing to do so I will update you guys on how the trip went tomorrow. Short and sweet today.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Friday, December 16, 2011

New York Trip

As I type I am planning out tomorrows trip up to New York which would involve me and two good friends leaving Baltimore at 8:15am getting there at 11:45am and then we wouldn't depart until 1:15 am that morning. I just hope I can get everything ready before then. It is going to be a fun trip but the mix of cold weather and camera gear never like to mix well. We should be able to get good footage still.

This will be my first trip to the heart of New York, as my last trip was only to the Statue of Liberty. I am equal parts nervous and excited as with all my trips. On the drive up I am going to try to finish up my take home final for school and then on the way back...maybe...try and edit this corporate video project which has been a thorn in my side. That is pretty much my weekend in a nutshell. Sunday I am just going to sleep to recover and Monday I might edit some more.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

School is Almost Out

School is almost over and I am very happy. Tomorrow is my last kinda full day of the semester since I have a final from 12:30 to 2 and 3:30 to 6. However the second of the two is just a presentation so it is all good. I still have to edit my corporate video project which I am totally wayyyy behind on but it is all good. Also I have to complete a take at home final due by Monday at 5pm. I should be able to breeze by all that soon though.

This Saturday was supposed to be the day for the samurai video shoot, but that had to be pushed back since my DP and myself are very busy; AND I didn't get all the props in yet from Amazon. I got some today, not fully what I expected but it is cool, I am going to try to put it all together and I think it will still look good.

Instead of going out and shooting this video Saturday I am instead going up to New York with a musical artist/good friend of mine Mr. Mayfield and we are going to get some footage for a certain upcoming music video. This will be my first time in New York so it is sure to be a fun time plus there are going to be some big things going down up there as well, so I am excited.

Other than that really not a whole lot going down, just focusing on school and seeing things coming up on the horizon.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Social Experiment Over

Last night after all that time working in my Craigslist social experiment I decided to walk away...I entered into a dark world that I didn't know I would be getting into. I began to get used to the world of my computer and it became a new reality. Instead of just leaving it at one post I kept posting to the m4w section in casual encounters. Not because I was looking to actually hook up but because I guess I wanted people to be interested  in me or something like that. I just kept it up until craigslist wouldn't even let me post anymore, it was ridiculous. Then all the other sites I got dragged to because of the emails I did get, which all turned out to be scams. I ended up at this strange adult webcam site too which turned out better for my research project because I interviewed one of the girls on there about why she does it.

After all that time online I finally had enough and asked my girlfriend Ashley to come down so that I could get myself away from it. It was a dark time that I would never repeat again.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Monday, December 12, 2011

Social Experiment Day 2

Into the second day of my social experiment and last night I posted up as a man looking for women on craigslist, which was very different than what I expected. At first I got almost no responses actually overall I get little to no responses from the post. The main issue is every 5 seconds there are million more posts that go up, so at the end of the day it gets lost in the shuffle. When I did get responses they were just teasing style messages that were from girls (at least it seemed that way to me), however I took it a step further by responding to see where it went  and I found that most of these things led to websites where I would need to give my credit card information. Once I got to this step for a second it didn't seem that bad but I caught myself and was like no this is a scam...I can be pretty dumb sometimes. I have tried it a few times and have only really gotten a response from one woman who was actually looking and then all she wanted was a d*ck pic which I was like noooooooo way. This is a research project for school but I am not putting it out there like that. I can get into my role well but that was a step too far for me.

So that has been my experience so far with the casual encounters section of craigslist, it is a strange strange place on the internet.

Writing a paper but this was my pause from it. Back to film related things soon, now it is time to end this semester of school.

Thanks for the support,
Dan Hess

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Social Experiment

So yesterday I was mainly just working all day, nothing really crazy going on until last night really.

For class I decided to go on craigslist and post something on the casual encounters not as myself but as someone completely different just to see what kind of responses I would get. The results were pretty amazing so far, I still have a few more posts to go but last night blew me away. It was crazy just to see the extreme people were willing to go just for the slim chance of certain things. The speed in which it was all received and the shear volume of responses was insane. In the end it is turning out to be a great end of year project to say the least but a little disturbing at the same time.

Other than that it was a typical long work day where I just thought about nothing more than quitting, but who doesn't have that fantasy sometimes. Ordered all the props for the samurai video shoot, but shipping could be anywhere from the 15th to the 20th, which worries me because I planned the shoot all around the 17th...

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Could Barely Wait

I almost couldn't wait to post this before midnight, but I held it back until now.

So today I had my interview which went great, it was about an hour long but after it was all done we came to the conclusion that I should wait until February to try and start due to the crazy schedule of the minimester. So when February comes around I will hit him back up and start the internship.

After that I went to the premiere of Fang a horror comedy film directed by Jonathan Boushell. It was a very funny cheesetastic picture that had a definite life of its own which is hard to find in a student film. I hope Mr. Boushell continues making pictures and growing as an artist he has a lot of talent. Everything was great about it, and I was glad to have been invited.

Tonight I ordered all the items to decorate the set for my samurai film which has transformed from a music video to a standalone story which will be super short but hopefully come out pretty bad ass. I just hope for post I can find a voice actor who can speak Japanese, that would be great. I am happy it is all coming together and by the end of the year I should have two solid short films which is an awesome accomplishment. I think with these last two it will make 4 short films in one year! 2011 has been great to To Tony Productions.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Friday, December 9, 2011

Premieres and Fears

Tonight I am going to go up to the premiere of the film Fang which everyone should try to make it up to. It is being held at Towson University in Van Bokkelen Hall at 7:30pm tonight. I am sure it will be good and anything I can do to support local Maryland artists/filmmakers I try and do. I am sure it is going to be a great film and a few of the actors I have worked with in the past will be in it.

It is happening around the same time as the Gas Guzzlers premiere last year which was held on 12-10-10.

Also in about an hour and a half I have an interview for an internship, the one I was supposed to have last week until I went to the wrong building without realizing it. However I am not too worried about it since I think I have strong chance of getting it, but ya never know. I am debating whether to take it because I gotta call a guy who is looking for an extra photographer at his studio, which would be paid, I think I will take that over the two.

We will see though what happens, with the way my life works what seems to be a solid deal never ever ever is, but at least I can say there is never a dull moment.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Head Shot Special

I have noticed that a lot of places charge a pretty good chunk of change to do actors headshots, which I think is pretty ridiculous. I have always been one to think of art as something more of an exchange but in some ways I have to abandon that notion if I do wanna actually make a living, so I thought of a pretty good in between. The answer for me was to only charge $50 to do head shots and edit the photos. The only part I am leaving to you the people is printing, but I will cover pretty much everything else. For $50 you are getting professional level photos which I can promise you will be happy with.

I have professional camera gear and lenses (the gem being the 35mm L lens I have). If you are interested you can email me at mind_confided@yahoo.com or give me a call at 443-683-1185. If I don't pick up just feel free to leave a voicemail and I will get back to you.

Thank you for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A Day For Editing

Today is a day reserved for editing a corporate video for my Corporate Video class, at least up until I have to go to work in the afternoon. I have not been able to start editing until now because of all the set backs of losing my computer and other projects going on at once. I hope I can get done a solid rough cut today that I can show the professor tomorrow because a final copy is due either the 13th or the 19th, can't really remember which one. I know I have been nothing but frustrating to work with from my partners perspective because at the beginning of the semester I had such a severe work injury I couldn't really help with the filming side, then when it comes my time to edit my computer dies. It has been that kind of semester.

In addition to that my ninja costume and sword comes in today, I hope the sword is big but I am worried it is not going to be because it was only 25 bucks, but it is so bad ass looking I think that may make up for it. We will see though.

I got a lot of things due over the next week, got a final coming up, this video, and I think two term papers. Just taking it one day at a time, and waiting until the last minute to do it all.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Feeling Better

Well this weekend and last night have made me feel much, much, much, much better. I went over to my friends house last night and within five seconds he was able to retrieve the memory off of my hard drive which has been my biggest worry all this time since my computer crashed out. I am so thankful that he was able to help me even though it kept him up late and he had to get up early today. If he missed class then my apologies to him.

Now that I got that out of the way I can go back to concentrating on my samurai video, which is still coming together. The crazy sword for it as well as the ninja costume should be shipping in tomorrow, as far as the samurai costume it hasn't even been processed yet which is worrying me since I ordered it on Friday. I emailed the company and hopefully it will all be resolved soon. Other than that I have principal photography coming up on the 14th and then the shoot on the 17th. I hope to have a fitting day for both actors sometime this week coming up if I can get all the costumes in.

Also after Friday I should be able to give my friend all the computer and have a new build sometime early next week, depending on how fast he can put it all together. Either way all the loose ends that seemed to be impossible to fix are getting fixed, thanks to good friends.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Monday, December 5, 2011

Getting Ready

Well tonight is going to be the night where I drop off my computer for evaluation by a good friend of mine. Hopefully he will have good news and be able to get all he can off of the hard drive for me. If not though, it will hurt but I feel as though I will be able to move forward with everything I need to do. For the most part I have all the documents I need so I am fortunate to say the least.

Right now I am worried that the costumes/props I bought will not get here in time for the video shoot, it is about 12 days away and I have not gotten any updates in shipping, so I hope by the end of this business day or the next they ship the items out so they get here on time. I am sticking with the samurai theme for this video and while I am getting a little bit of flack from the guys at the studio I think I can make something good, as long as the schedule works out well for my DP/Cameraman since I am counting on him big time.

We will see how it all goes.

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Sunday, December 4, 2011


Well this week has been all about updating my set up, thanks to my computer dying last Sunday. Last night with the help of a friend from work I ordered parts for a new computer setup, which he is willing to build for me which is awesome. This includes:

Intel i 720 2600k sandybridge
Western Digital Caviar Green 2 TB
OCZ Vertex 3 120gb
Nvidia Quadro FX 1800
Corsair XMS3 2x4gb 2 sets
Antec 750w

Total is about $1,450 which is about what I paid for my last build but I get a lot more power for editing in this one. The flaw in my last build was that is was made for more like an all around machine to do both editing and gaming. My interests have obviously changed so I am going with purely editing, not gaming machine what so ever.

In addition to that last night I also purchased Adobe Production Premium CS5 from the Academic Superstore for only $395 which is awesome, because I was trying out the demo on this labtop not optimized for editing at all and it runs great so it will be spectacular on my new build. Now to just get the memory off my old build which I hope that my friend is able to do and then on to the new one.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Thursday, December 1, 2011

November is Over

November what a truly strange and different month you were. It was a month for me to be on a film set which was a blast, I got to boom and help out with gear...it was fun. You were my transition from doing so much sports videography to getting back into the realm of making films. I finally finished up Love is Undead and was editing like a champ until my computer died (it is ok computer, you are in a better place and your upgrade will be truly incredible). I had my first interview for a film related job which was an amazing experience to gain (I may not have gotten the job but it is ok). As you have gone away the 1st of December is another interview for an internship, which I am praying I get. But thanks November for being there, to teach me so much more than I have learned in a long time. Thank you Everett Glovier for letting me on your set and teaching me so much, and continuing to help me despite the fact that at first I probably sounded like a dick. 

On that note yesterday my meeting with a local country artist went really well. It sounds like I got the job for doing album/promo photography and I am super excited. It will be a chance to get some more credit out there and a chance to work with more people subjects, which I don't get to do very often. I have a few ideas in mind and I can't wait to try them out.

Waiting to get my computer memory taken out so then I a friend of mine can build me a new awesome PC. Hopefully everything goes according to plan.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Meeting Today

Today I am meeting with a local country musician who I went to middle school with about doing some photography for him. He is mainly after a good album cover and a bunch of promotional pictures leading up to his album. I use to hang out around school with him all the time in middle school but have not really seen him since, so it will be cool to catch up after such a long period of time.

Tomorrow at 2:30pm I have an interview with a local production company in Towson which is the internship I am really after. I hope after the interview I get offered the spot so I don't even have to go to my interview on Friday, which I really just don't want to do since I could find nothing but bad things about them online. I shouldn't have rescheduled in the first place, guess I just didn't want to be mean.

Still waiting to get my computer checked up on and hopefully will be able to get all my files off of it. Thankfully a friend at work is willing to build me a new system as long as I get all the parts and bring them to him. I have been working with him since I got there so I trust him a lot. Once that is settled I will be able to edit again!!!! Wish me a lot of luck with that one.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Monday, November 28, 2011

Computer is Dead

Well it had to happen sooner or later, my computer is officially dead, which sucks but an upgrade has been long overdue. It happened last night right after I finished editing another rough cut of my short film Love is Undead which I did to mainly color grade the film. Some of the correction came out better than others but it was made a lot easier using the program Mojo for Premiere Pro. So after that I burned a dvd copy and then went to scan the computer, during the scan it froze for a while and I decided to force restart it. When I did that it gave me that same check disc error like it always does and I bypassed again but then as it was restarting it decided to do another automatic check disk scan, while it was scanning it froze again while it was scanning the indexes. At this point I knew things were bad, and again I forced restarted it which gave me the error message again. This time I could not bypass it and I gave up. Luckily a friend of mine knows a guy who should at least be able to get all the memory out of it. Also a friend at work today offered to build a new one by gutting my old tower which is awesome.

Last night was terrible though and today wasn't much better. I can't edit a project for class which is my whole end of the grade and I also can't do any type of word document papers or powerpoint projects thanks to the fact that the laptop I am using doesn't have those programs. I will just download the trials though since there is less than a month of school and I get the programs for 30 days.

Wish me luck with a new computer,
Daniel Hess

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Filming Filming Filming

Well today was my last full weekend off I took for filming The Cat, which is sad but true :(

Anyway on Saturday they felt like filming wasn't going to take that long so I got the day off which was nice because I needed it. Late Friday night I was up at Mania Music Group's studio discussing video possibilities until about 2 am, maybe later. We got a lot done that night and we are ready to go with music videos but we had to stay up late to figure it out. So Saturday I got up at 11 am and just sort of chilled with my day (a little bit of editing Love Is Undead on the side). The rest of my day was spent chilling with my friend Zach and watching the new Conan: The Barbarian which was ok.

Sunday I woke up early again to get ready for filming which took place in Havre De Grace, which is a really nice small town. We had a little bit of setbacks today but we managed to get a few shots in and even got a few locals involved in filming which was cool. From there we went to Everett's house and watched footage, then called it a day. There is still some more filming to go which I will try to get off for in the future. Next week we will not be filming since it Everett's b-day weekend so HAPPY BIRTHDAY in advance to him. It has been a great experience and I can't wait to see a finished product which will be here soon!

As far as other things got a lot going on this week coming up including school work which I have pushed off until last minute again lol and a few business meetings. I hope I don't die!

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Friday, November 25, 2011

The Day After Thanksgiving

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday! Besides the terrible day at work once I got home everything was much better. Dinner was good, got to see my girlfriend, and the Ravens won so I had a good rest of the day. No Black Friday shopping for me today though, but for those who did go out today I hope shopping was a success.

Today I am filming the LAST thing for Love is Undead which is just a stand in part which as I have probably said before sucks that I didn't get it earlier but for whatever reason I forgot to do a full over the shoulder shot. After I get this though the last scene I need to edit will come together and then I should be good on the visual editing part, the next step is audio editing, which is going to require a lot of ADR (yay!). Once that is done though today turns into a mainly chill day until work rolls around at like 4.

Thanks for the support and Happy Holidays!,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Bumming It

Today I am totally bumming it. Just woke up and was like I need a break. Had an interview for an internship lined up today but I didn't go because I didn't hear all that great things on the internet about the company. I am still going to do the interview for the experience but not today.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I am excited even though I am working because it will be a nice sit down dinner with my family which never happens and it will be a chance to get my mind off of all the hecticness (that isn't a word) going on with me. Also I would like to say HAPPY THANKSGIVING to everyone now because I probably won't be on again until tomorrow night. Just getting that out there.

This weekend is another filming weekend from Friday to Sunday. Friday I am filming the stand in scene for Love is Undead and Saturday + Sunday are for The Cat which I know will be awesome. I also may be a Production Assistant for a commercial shoot the 28th and 29th, haven't got the official word but I am expecting to any day now. Then the 30th I have a lunch meeting with a friend of mine who is making a country album and needs promo/album cover pictures; so we are going to discuss that further. In the middle of all this on the 28th I have to call to set up an internship at a local production company and I have to get an edit done for class the 29th/ give a presentation for another class the same day. In addition (haha) I may be doing an interview on December 2nd, not 100% yet.

A lot to do I know but this what life is all about, especially when it comes to film, I wouldn't trade my life for this.

Thanks for the support (my biggest thanks this holiday season),
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Chase Is Back

Well tomorrow I have an interview lined up for another internship which I was hoping to be paid but it seems like it will be fore college credit which I am fine with just as long as I can get an internship really. Being paid while interning would have been amazing but getting college credit for it is pretty cool too. Just excited to be getting so close to real world experience, plus it will get me away from my job now which couldn't suck much harder (but that is another topic).

In addition I have to contact a member of a production company here in Maryland next week by phone to set up an interview for an internship opportunity as well. Out of the two this is the one I would rather get because it is a production company which means I could get on set experience, the other place is more for photography which is awesome but at the same time I am trying to get into the video field. Either way it will be great to have an internship.

On Sunday I got down a rough cut of Love Is Undead and it is looking like it is going to be a little over 4 minutes long, but a very solid four minutes which I am very proud of. The ending is the part I like the best but the whole film is pretty sweet too. I am very proud of all the work my cast and crew put into this film as well as the way everything has turned out. We may have had a lot of delays with this film but sh*t happens for a reason and it is working out for the best. Soon I want to have a more fine cut, then a fine audio cut, next color correction, then visual/audio fx.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Monday, November 21, 2011

Filmmaker Manifesto

Today I have decided to post up my manifesto. As a filmmaker and artist I feel as though it is important to put into words exactly the way I feel everyday of my life.

I am a filmmaker an auteur as the French would call it. Every morning when I rise from bed the first thing on my mind is film and every night the last thing I think of before I go to bed is the same. Whenever I have a free moment to think about anything it is what moment would this be in a movie or what movie this reminds me of. The first thing to say when there is an awkward silence is "What was the last movie everyone saw," or joke about a really bad film. When I am at work doing something not related to film I think about movie ideas or picture myself inside of a film about my life...what part of this story does this represent I ask myself. When I finally get the chance to make a movie it is the greatest high I can get, the rush of getting shots done seeing my idea come to life, it is like every second is a thousand Christmas' culminating into one giant day. After the film is done I am happy because now I get to edit and can be alone for hours if I need to just making the film look how I want it to look. Once it is a final product I want to show the world, and I couldn't more proud. I show my family and they react in a way that is less than fantastic but I have the biggest smile on my face, people may say mean things about it and I listen but I selfishly think "What do they know." As a filmmaker my ego can inflate higher than a helium balloon and I can see myself as a great artist better than those around me, however I have to deflate to realize that working with others is going to be the way to go. I struggle constantly with inner demons threatening to make me quit but as time goes on I see that I can't stop moving no matter what comes in my way. I am a filmmaker one whose vision knows no bounds together with my crew and cast we can make a world changing film or we can destroy each other. This is my manifesto.

Thank you all for the love,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Opportunities on the Horizon

So today was another great day on the set of The Cat it was a quick shoot but it was a fun one for sure, a little rushed but a lot of the shots were really well put together, so everything worked out awesome!

While on set I talked to a good friend of mine Kane Mayfield of Mania Music Group who wants to do two videos fairly soon so it looks like that is what my December is going to turn into, which will be fun. One video will be fairly straightforward I just wanna have really nice lighting going on, the other will be a little more complex but I think I can handle it.

Also coming up next week I should have another internship interview as a photo editor if all goes well on the next phone chat, and I will be contacting the head of a production company here in Maryland to try to set up an interview for either this week or next. So we will see with those two things coming up.

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Friday, November 18, 2011

Benched Before the Big Game

So today I got benched from the biggest games of the seasons by IBN. I should have been recording 1 or more championship games today but instead they decided to tell me that they were going to go with basketball games in the future, which is fine and dandy but on their website they were reporting how they were going to be at a bunch of games here in Maryland. I hope it is an error on my part because I have bent over backwards to do these games...granted I get paid decent for it still you would think that it would have some kind of pull after all these months. It was my bad that I couldn't do the second game last week but I pushed myself too hard and they kind of put me in a bad spot which forced my hand to say yes. I still shouldn't be punished by not recording these games today. Oh well, at least I got more filming of The Cat to look forward to this weekend.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Closing Door Opening Windows

So yesterday was a day dedicated to closing doors all around me. Today in the other hand I see small windows opening up which could lead to further things. I just got an email from a guy I met in one of my EMF classes who contacted me about a possible internship which would give me the possibility of professional experience either in a studio or on set...either of which would be a huge contribution to my future as a professional. I am again very excited to see what happens. That is only problem with this industry is that it is a constant rollercoaster where one day will be huge, another will be free fall, and long periods of waiting in between.

What is on tape for tonight? I had an opportunity to have two gigs tonight (a concert and a dj event) however I do not really see either one working out...not because I am trying to be a jerk I just need more time for me at this point, I am dead tired from the travel over these past few months and want to stay home for more than a small amount of time...that is what this week has been for. Plus tonight I am going to start editing Love is Undead finally, hopefully by the end of the night I will have a rough cut ready to go off of. I just want to churn it out in time for the Maryland Film Festival.

Class is starting in an hour then I am going to get the lead out.

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Bummer Night

Well to keep everyone in the loop, I heard back from the Black and Decker internship tonight and unfortunately I didn't get it. Which is hard for me to even type because I had so much going into that job. But I got too carried away and shouldn't have gotten my hopes up. I guess I just saw an opportunity to get out of my crappy job and just wanted to go. I put all my eggs into one basket and lost out big time. It is not the end of the world it just really screws up my night.

I am not going to be marathoning a rough cut of Love is Undead even though I did catalogue all the footage which is nice to get out of the way. I mean I just bummed beyond belief everything that I had going for me this morning fell completely through by tonight...don't you love how life can work.

When it rains it pours.

Thanks guys,
Daniel Hess

Thinking of a Marathon

Tonight I am really debating whether or not I want to marathon a rough cut of Love is Undead to show to a professor of mine at school tomorrow. I have been getting terrible sleep and I don't think this would help any but I really want to jump on the footage and start getting something done. I still haven't figure out what is going on with Thursday night or even Friday for that matter. Usually I hear back from IBN sports by now but I haven't heard anything from them yet. So long story short things are pretty screwy right now. The only for sure thing is I am going to be helping the guys with filming this Sunday really. Other than that there is really nothing else. I just sent another email out to IBN so I am going to wait.

Although Friday I should be hearing back from the internship for Black and Decker, which I am praying I get! Think good thoughts please...I need that job so bad!

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Fresh Week Fresh Jobs

So as another week sets in upon me I have already begun booking gigs for the weekend, which seems to be the time when everything goes down. Right now I am talking to the people over at IBN sports to see if they want me to film both championship games this Friday or just one. For those who don't know the High School football season ends this Friday 11/18/11 with a bunch of championship games. At 2pm I found out that Good Counsel is playing its game at Navy Stadium, then at 8pm Gilman has its game at Johnny Unitas Stadium here at Towson University. I am hoping to do both but since I couldn't do both this past Friday I don't know if they will have as much faith in me. I got it worked out though so I should be good on both.

Not only that but this Thursday as long as I can work out a ride situation I am going to try to go to the Get Down to film my DJ buddy Sean since it a sort of birthday bash/dj gig for him. If I can make it should be the last piece of footage I need to do his promo video which I have been working on since last year only because working with him is a little sporatic and my schedule is hard to work out on short notice. We will see.

Finally this Sunday is another day for sound recording on set of The Cat which has been nothing but wonderful. I am very much looking forward to it!

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Sunday, November 13, 2011

And That's a Wrap

Well today it was the last day of filming for Love is Undead which started around 10:30 am and by 12pm we were all done. It was a short two scenes we had to do and it was the most relaxed time filming yet...so overall a fun time. I am sort of sad that it is all done, but at the same time it is nice to be finished with everything, especially since it was a process of four days from August to November. Looking back at the filming it sucked that I couldn't get it done sooner but I learned a lot from it which was pretty sweet so I wouldn't have had it any other way. From here I am on to editing which will prove to be a lot of fun (not lol).

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Day 3 Filming

Today is day 3 of filming The Cat which I am very excited for. It is going to be a mainly outdoors shoot by the looks of it so I am not looking forward to that, because it is coooooold outside but I have a lot of layers so I will be ok. The location is about an hour away in Darlington Maryland but morning drives are always nice so it will be fun. I am smart this time and I am going to bring my camera so that way I have lots of pics from the day of shooting which I will be posting up as soon as I can. It is nice just recording sound and not having to worry about the editing process for once (just a random thought).

Then tonight I will be up late prepping the set down my grandmother's old house for Love is Undead shoot day four...yes only day four, but it will be the last day, for real this time.

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Friday, November 11, 2011

Football Woes

Well today went good and bad. On the good side I was able to film the Gilman game and stream it live successfully. It was fun but tiring. The bad side is that the drive took way longer than I expected and I had too much to get through when I got home so I was not able to make my second game which was the Good Counsel one. It was a combination of fatigue and the fact that I couldn't go from game to game since I did not have enough gas. I am really mad at myself but it was an hour drive and once I walked into my house I wanted nothing more than to just relax for a little bit.

Now I am chilling at home conforming the Gilman game in Premiere Pro which takes waaaaay too long and I am sitting on my bed next to my faithful dog Lexi! I knew it was going to be another tough weekend but jeeze it is only the second of four days of non stop work and I am done. Tomorrow I gotta get up at 5 am to get ready for The Cat day 3 filming up in Darlington, Md. I am bringing my camera and taking pictures on set, hope they don't mind. Also I am going to be booming more!!!! Yay!

Then on Sunday it is the final day for Love is Undead!

Wish me luck,
Daniel Hess

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Interview Day

So today is the day for my interview with Black and Decker for their video internship. It is at 2:30pm and I was up pretty late last night getting everything I needed ready to go for the interview. I am extremely nervous as I am for most things that I am unsure of but at the same time I am ready to get it done. I hope all goes well with it and that I may be fortunate enough to get the spot.

Also right now I am about to have another double gig day on Friday with two football games back to back. At 1:30pm I have the Gilman vs. Archbishop Spalding game and then at 7pm there is the Good Counsel football game. The Gilman game is fine but the Good Counsel game is an hour away from where I live so it will be a nice and long drive to get there, it sucks but for the money I can't really argue it. We will see today when I get the confirmation if I am getting both games but I more than likely will.

I swear I could fill like a novel full of papers if I kept rambling on about what is going on over here at TTP but I won't do that today, gotta get ready for school and interviews.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Paranormal Activity 3

So last night I decided to see Paranormal Activity 3 with my girlfriend Ashley. I went in with almost no expectations even though I did enjoy the first two, especially the original. I am not here to give away the story but it starts out right before the events of the second one and you see Katie drop off all these old vhs recordings which neither seems to remember. And then after the whole robbery scene in the second one it switches over to the tapes. Again here the theme is that tension builds up from the beginning in a very strange way, at the start of the film this is achieved beautifully which has a pretty cool effect. However directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman (of Catfish fame) begin to stick to a predictable scare/plot factor which seems all too familiar. Things get crazier we start finding out more than the biggest thing that hurts this film is when they leave the house and stay the night with Julie's grandmother...this is where the film loses all the steam. At this point the plot becomes so easily predictable it almost hurts, there is not subtle way to say it. As soon as they got there I thought "Oh it is becoming one of those movies." I understand Joost and Schulman wanted to take it another new direction but the reason no one took the films the way they did is because it begins to make the film more like a conventional horror film which sucks. Plus there are almost no 'little' scares in this film, all of that is traded off for big over the top more crowd pleasing thrills. These young directors are fresh in their careers and it seems as though this franchise was just too much for them to take on. If there is a fourth incarnation in this series hopefully they will release the horror comes from keeping it contained and small; that is why the first one was so successful.

Pass on this one or wait until dvd.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


So I have an internship all lined up for this Thursday at 2:30pm with Black and Decker. For the internship I am basically going to be creating web content, editing, and just helping out with the video portion of Black and Decker. It is a pretty independent internship which focuses on mostly in house corporate style video production. It is a paid internship through Black and Decker which offers a lot for me to learn as far as video production/corporate communication. I am very excited and hope that the interview goes well even though I am extremely nervous.

I am also going to be finishing up my film Love is Undead this Sunday November 13th in the morning which should be a lot of fun and going back onto the set of The Cat on the 12th to help them again with sound and whatever else they need. So another packed week and another week of brushing school off, it is going to catch up to me but between the future and the now, it is pretty obvious what I am trying to invest in.

Thanks for the support/love,
Daniel Hess

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Another Crazy Weekend

So this weekend I had another hectic schedule to say the least. On Saturday I helped out on set of The Cat from about 9 am to 4 pm, which was a lot of fun. I did sound and odd jobs here and there. I had a lot to bring to the crew such as my lens and various other equipment. However I learned a lot from the experience. More than I think I have learned from any set so far in my film career. It was a fast paced style however it was extremely professional and easy going. It was the best of both worlds, extremely relaxed but at the same time amazingly productive.

So I am going to go on a rant for a second and say some nice things about these guys. The director Zach Myers and Cameraman/DP Everett Glovier are two amazing dudes! They are only in Community College but yet they already get how to make a film. They have been able to pull together some great actors which thanks to the help of Craigslist has become very easy and they have all the right equipment. I mean had I been able to get over my social anxiety two years ago and use actual actors instead of myself and friends I may have been at their level a long time ago. I consider them much above my level of expertise and I know these guys if they can stay together as a team will go places. I hope to keep working this well throughout The Cat with them and to for sure work on future projects.

As far as Saturday night I had to go to Archbishop Spalding High School to film the MIAA championship soccer game (Gilman vs. Mcdonogh). It was my first ever time filming a soccer game and it was a tough one between both teams. Very good defense which lead to overtime. In overtime Mcdonogh got a crazy lucky goal to win it 1-0 over Gilman. The worst part of it however was the fact that it felt like 0 degrees at the top level of the press box. At the end of the game literally everything we had sitting out was frosted over because of the extreme cold. After the game we ate and went to bed around 1 am.

In the morning today I got up at 5 :45 am in order to get ready for The Cat day 2 starting at 9 am again. Today we got through a lot more and our actors again put in a great performance, and again I worked sound which seems to be my go to job on set lol. It was fun, free pizza, and a fun chill time. They had some amazing on set effects and Everett seems to be a genius of everything from production to post lol. Even though he is on set douche...just kidding.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Two Gigs...One Day

So today is another Saturday of double gigs, which I wasn't expecting at first but now at least I am breaking even from all the time I missed during the weekend.

My first gig is from 9 am to 4 pm which is helping my buddy with his short film The Cat which should prove to be cool and fun. I don't think I am getting paid but it doesn't really matter because it is a set where I just go to and don't have to direct...which is nice to just do a job only.

The second gig is the MIAA championship soccer game today between Gilman and Mcdonough which starts at 7:30pm. The nice thing is it is being played at Archbishop Spalding High School which is in Severn, Md (only a half hour away). My first soccer game filming ever and it will be streamed live online tonight. Since I am getting paid for this game I am not taking a hit this weekend like I thought I would be.

So now is the time for video work more I guess. Either way wish me luck.

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Slowing Down

This week turned out to be a challenge not because of a lot going on just because I have become so drained. I decided not to film a football game on Friday because it is shaping up to be the only day of rest for me even though I am going to be working.

That being said I am still going to be helping out on a fellow filmmaker's film throughout the month of November as well as finishing my film up on what is going to be (at least right now) on November 13th. Plus I have to start editing my corporate video for the Baltimore Humane Society...so now there is a switch from photo back to video again.

I am going to try to keep updating the blog as much as I can but right now I just need a lot of sleep...

Thanks for the support,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Ellis Island Trip

Well after a long while of editing I have all the best pictures from my trip to Ellis Island this year. I took 107 and narrowed it down to 23 or 24, I don't remember 100% but either way the ones I picked are my favorite from the trip. I recommend going to see the Statue of Liberty to anyone, it is really remarkable and I would go again if I had the chance to. For now though please enjoy these pictures and let me know what you think of them.

Thanks everyone,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

October is Over!

Well since today is the first day of November I realized that October is finally over (duh!) but it was really a crazy incredible month to say the least. I know I say all the time that To Tony Productions is expanding and growing and on to bigger things but this month really showed me that bigger things are coming. The fact that in one day I managed to fit in three gigs from the morning to night is insane but somehow we managed to get it done.

I have had a blast filming all the great High School football games for IBN sports and the experience I have gained is incredible...just from finding a little ad on Craigslist I have gotten so much work. Also going to the Funky Formal was really cool and a unique experience (a party in an alley really?) that I will not be able to top for some time. Going to the dogfest at the Baltimore Humane Society was fun just to see all the dogs and the cool setup that BHS has. Plus the pics I got from that event were incredible. Then for the first time I got to see the Statue of Liberty which is now 125 years old...it is a once in a lifetime experience.

October 2011 is a month I won't forget and it was the first time in a long time I found a perfect balance between my professional and social lives. November is already shaping up to be a crazy month as well, I just hope things keep up this way for a long time.

Wish us all luck,
Daniel Hess

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween to everyone out there today! I hope this Halloween proves to be a good one. Out here on the East Coast it is cold and sunny but still a pretty good day to go out trick or treating/party. I myself am going to make tonight low key and enjoy some Buffalo Wild Wings with an old friend.

So some news for everyone, today I am expecting a call in regards to my first ever photo gig. This Saturday I believe I am going out to a lacrosse game to take some photos for about three hours. All the details are not worked out yet but it should be about 200 for 3 hours of work which isn't bad especially considering I am still getting my feet wet in the photo world.

In addition to that I am still talking to a friend of mine who has a cool new project coming up entitled The Cat in which I am still working out what I am going to be doing for crew but it should prove to be fun. This will be the first time in like 2 years I have been on a set other than my own; which should help me learn more from other filmmakers. I am hoping this leads into a lot more work with the director.

Finally today I leave you with a few pictures from the Funky Formal gig I did two weeks ago...so enjoy!

Have a safe Halloween,
Daniel Hess

Saturday, October 29, 2011


Well unfortunately yesterday I was only able to go to the football game and film. The game went a lot longer than expected and I didn't even get home until close to 7pm which was a lot later than I thought. I was hoping to be home at 5:30 giving me enough time to get ready for the Brass Monkey show I had at 8 but the turnaround was too short so I couldn't make it.

So today is kind of a miserable day outside so I am editing pictures finally from the trip to the Statue of Liberty I took a few weeks back which is fun, and I have so far found some pretty unique ones. Other than that it is a slow day with work at 2.

If people out there are still interested in the cinematographer position I am open to it but since I discovered the open directory on the Maryland Film Office I now know where to go for future film projects. Another reason to feel a lot better.

Pictures soon,
Dan Hess

Friday, October 28, 2011

Cinematographers Wanted

Well today I am going to be filming a football game at Gilman which starts at around 3 pm, and then maybe filming a friend of mine play at the Brass Monkey Saloon at 9 pm. However that is not the big thing on my mind today...

I am really looking to start working with a local cinematographer or at least someone who is trying to get into the field. I feel as though I have people who have a real grasp of every other part of the cinema experience except for that. I posted an ad up on craigslist last night and as per usual with craigslist people are taking it the wrong way.

I am not going to lie and say I can pay someone right off the bat, I am just looking for someone that I feel comfortable working with and can rely on...think of it like an extended job interview. I have scorched too many times with people acting like than can help and they can't, so I am not going to pay someone to come to me for a job interview.

That being said if I find someone and it works out really well, and I really like them then I will be able to get them on a paying gig, which is forthcoming. Sorry if anyone got confused or thought of this in the wrong way...

Dan Hess

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Hunt is Over

So in what feels like forever I have finally gotten things straightened out with my camera set up.

This morning I was super depressed because after all the research I put into a separate Digital Video Recorder for my HXR I found that it was not going to do all that I thought it could plus the HDMI output is very finnicky which can be a problem if I am doing any sort of movement with the camera.

After deciding not to go with that the next step was thinking that I would need a new camera, so I immediately starting looking into the Sony EX3 which a lot of broadcast people use and it was used to make the movie Monsters which I loved to death. However it is about a 9,000 dollar camera. At that point I was lost without a clue of what to do next.

It was on my mind all day and finally I talked to a professor of mine about it and he had made my situation a lot more managable. I told him the deal and also that I have access to a T3I which is when he said well just use the HXR as a high quality sound recorder and use it for a side angle, then just use the T3I as the main camera to shoot the film on. He said the only difference between a T3I and a EX3 is something an engineer would be able to see.

So now I am going to cut my losses and just use my HXR for sound only and then just use my T3I as my main camera, I already have a dolly and crane for it anyhow so now I feel a lot better. No more spending anymore money and I can have a high quality camera.

As much I may think school is pointless one on one I can really learn a lot, that is what school should be I tell ya, one on one interaction.

Thanks guys...I feel so much better,
Daniel Hess

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

New Information

So yesterday a friend at school told me about an amazing device that may finally give me the edge I have been looking for with my camera.

Apparently there are devices known as Digital Video Recorders but for camcorders which can record the video outside your camera at a higher bitrate than what a camcorder is really able to do. Apparently my HXR NX5U is not performing what I need it to because the bitrate is way too low (24 megabits per second) which is far from true HD. For example the Canon T3I does about 44 megabits a second, which is why it has better picture quality. So far I have been researching it like crazy and have narrowed it down to two possibilities.

On one hand there is the Atomos Ninja which is under a grand but is an older device which is about to really be phased out by the newer device the Samurai...which I don't know when it is coming out. On the other hand there is the Fast Forward Video Sidekick HD which is newer and comes with a little bit more however it is 2,000 brand new.

I feel as though the Sidekick is the way to go but on another hand there is the fact that many have been saying that even with these devices the NX5U still manages to under perform which I hope is not the case but I won't really know until I get the thing. At this point I am confused as what to do and cannot find any videos which demonstrate what the ninja or sidekick can do with the NX5U.

If anyone can provide some insight or knows something I am missing I will greatly appreciate the feedback but for now I will keep researching and try to find a solution.

Thanks as always,
Daniel Hess

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

More Pictures To Go

So even with this recent influx of pictures I am still not done, and still have a bunch more to get through. My last series of pictures to go through is from my trip to Ellis Island two weeks ago, which was pretty awesome. If you get the chance to go see the Statue of Liberty don't hesitate, just go...

Besides that I am also on the verge of getting a Polarizing filter for my L lens so when I do outdoor stuff it won't be so blown out, especially considering that the majority of my work is outdoor photography/videography anyway. Once I get my finances straight that is forthcoming.

Scheduling is underway as of right now for the final day of shooting for Love is Undead which I am expecting to be about mid to late November. From there I am going to edit it up, add original music, and then color correct. So a rough estimate for the film is to be finished in December hopefully mid to late December...maybe earlier at this point it is hard to tell. After that I want to submit it to the Maryland Film Festival which I think the deadline is late December (December 15th to be exact) for entries.

So again think positive thoughts for To Tony Productions, we are growing and maturing every day, slowly we will make our mark and people will see the potential that exists in this small company.

Thanks for the love,
Daniel Hess

Monday, October 24, 2011

Webers Farm

This year me and my girlfriend Ashley decided to go up to Webers Farm for a day just to see it again. The last time I went I was a young kid and barely remembered it so it was nice to see it again. Ashley had never been so it was her first time. While the place is made for kids and we really only got a few hours out of the trip it was still a lot of fun. I think what made it was the intense fall theme on the farm, I usually am not a big fan of fall but this year I see how great it can be. Of course while I was there I took a ton of pictures just to keep raising my experience up and decided to upload them here for everyone to see. Let me know what you think and if there are things I can improve upon let me know as well.