29 November 2010

thinning out a DIY to-do list

The versatility aspect of typical Gemini traits means that people born under this sign are usually adept at multi-tasking. They thrive on juggling numerous priorities and projects, and they really aren't happy unless they're working on several things simultaneously. --Gemini Traits
Well that explains it.

One thing about being a DIY filmmaker, working minus a budget, is that more often than not, you start out by doing everything. Or, as I put it: writer/director/producer/editor/craft services. It's an essential starting point, often born out of necessity. But, as you progress, you start to learn to let go, which can be harder than it sounds. When you're used to controlling every aspect of a production, putting something like the cinematography in someone else's hands can be frightening. Of course, it's also liberating. It allows you to focus your efforts elsewhere and, let's face it, the cinematographer you bring on is probably better at it than you are.

Still, these steps take time, and when you're a Gemini DIY filmmaker, your to-do list gets long. Here's mine, for December:
  • Blanc de Blanc
    • Get DVDs authored
      • compile extras (interactive script?)
    • Make payments on website easier
    • Figure out where to put film online for easy streaming/rental/download
    • Work with Ryan Davis to tweak the DVD artwork
    • Order, etc.
    • Finish the Tripline writeup
  • Year Without Rent
    • Finish setting up the Kickstarter stuff (pitch video)
    • Figure out web home for project
      • Web layout. What can/should the webpage do? How to do that?
    • Work w/ Nina to get sponsorship stuff under way
    • Partners?
    • Projects?
    • Work with Heather on logistics
  • Up Country
    • finish the novella
    • finish teaser
    • start figuring out the music
    • finish the Assembly Edit
    • Set up the webpage

That's not everything, of course. That's just the big stuff.

What I need to do is at the top of the list make the item "Figure out what below I have to do and what I can outsource". There's just too much on that list for me to handle. I don't say this to brag. I get the impression that every other DIY filmmaker out there has a similar list. It's the nature of the beast. But I think maybe we'd all be better served by looking around and seeing what on the list we maybe aren't so good at. Me, I'm passable with web stuff, but there's scores of people who are much, much better than I am. Is it worth it to outsource that stuff? Absolutely. But that involves letting go of some of the control, and that's scary.

But, it's also essential.