I HATE: People who ask if their kids should believe in Santa Claus!

I HATE: People who ask if their kids should believe in Santa Claus!

Yes, they bloody well should.

Ok, I know, WHO ARE YOU TO TELL ME THEY SHOULD???? people will now hit the comments, but let’s face it, you clicked the link, so you want some clarification, right?

I hate that. Who am I to you? Who am I to give you and your kids advice, they’re your kids. Raise them how you see best.

But, to back up my claim, here’s why they bloody well should believe.

Past:

Santa is believed to be a magical being that flies around the Earth (or across it if you’re a flat-earther. BTW flat-earther has a red squiggly line under it when it is typed, meaning IT IS WRONG!!! – Next blog??).

As I was saying, it is believed that Santa is a magical being that travels around the globe, in one night, delivering presents to all the children of the world. He travels in a sleigh, dragged by magical flying reindeer, carrying a sack full of self-replenishing gifts, or a sack so big it holds all of them. So, like a UPS man?

This, is utter nonsense. Mainly as, a quick google search asking ‘The Science behind Santa Claus’ returns a really good and in-depth blog from Huge Castillo Sanchez of Chalk Dust Magazine explaining all the math behind hit. Www.chalkdustmagazine.com/blog/science-behind-santa-claus/

In fact, my belief stems from the myth behind the man. Again, googling ‘Is Santa Claus Real’ pings back a lovely little phrase saying. No, he isn’t.
The myth is said to be started when a gentleman, who was left some money from his parents, decided to ‘pay it forward’. I’m guessing it was his ‘midlife crisis’ because he gave the money and all his things to less fortunate people, predominantly children. Eventually, he became a priest. The story goes, that each year during winter, he would jump on his cart, pulled by a donkey, and deliver goodies to locals. This varied from food, clothes, coal, and handmade toys. Some tales even state he would lower the money he gave down their chimneys at night, so they’d wake to find a bag left waiting for them.

In anticipation of his visits, children were to leave out food for him and his donkey, to aid in his journey. When he died, this became a tradition, one that is said to be in his honour as thanks from locals.

Present

These can be related too by todays traditions. Toys are usually what is associated with Santa Claus. We have our children leave out milk and cookies for Santa, and carrots for his reindeer.
Now, my personal belief is that cookies and milk came from the same place his red suit did…corporations cashing in on the idea of Santa Claus. I mean, he’s CokeCola red right? Am I the only one who sees this? Nope, a quick google search and TheFact Site explains the backstory of Santa, https://www.thefactsite.com/why-is-santa-red/, and as it also shares similar back story to my previous comments, and explains it was indeed CokeCola that introduced Red Santa. Holidays are coming, and corporations capitalising on a heartfelt story. Milk and cookies…Americanism anyone?

Now, we see Santa as an aged, jolly, generous fat man. A true ‘Saint’. Generous, loving, supporting, inspiring, charitable, happy, positive…

See where I’m going with this. Santa Claus is real!!

Future

I hate people who ask whether their kids should believe. You’re damn right the should.

If you want your children to grow up to believe that we’re in this life together…yes! If you want your kids to know what Christmas really is…yes!
If you want your children to understand what it means to be in the Christmas spirit…then YES!!

Santa Claus is real because he is the embodiment of happiness, during a cold and dark winter at the end of the year.
Santa Claus is real because he represents non-bias, fully inclusive positivity. He maybe named Saint Nicholas, but I guarantee you, the real Saint Nic didn’t care about any of the holdups we have today (race, religion etc). He just didn’t want to see people freeze or starve.

The relatable bit!!!!

Tell your kids this, if you ever doubt it again.
Santa Claus is real, like Spider-man is real. Spider-man was designed to be the perfect hero. Believing, without a doubt, that because he has the power to act, he acts. Because he can save lives, he saves lives. The fact, he/she CAN BE ANYONE. That was always the point. Spider-man was the hero, that anyone could be. Santa Claus is exactly that, the Christmas spirit that ANYONE CAN BE.
And that, my friends, is the real Santa Claus.

And why should you tell your kids Santa is real?

Encouraging kids to believe is TOP MOST IMPORTANT,
Because you can bribe them to do anything if you threaten Santa won’t come.

Merry Christmas!

Why do I make short films?

Short answer…fun.

A few years ago my life changed, and I wasn’t sure how I was going to change with it. Being a man of music, in the past, I thought music was my forte. I also swayed a little towards teaching, but soon realised that was not the me I am now.

Film making is a story telling process that allows for full sensory immersion. I mean, reading a book is amazing, stimulates the mind, pushes the imagination to its brink, and also assists with the ability to read. Films however, in my opinion, are a way of making dreams visually possible to see.

So far, I have tried writing short stories, and one of which is blogged somewhere on my page: Love on the A48. Its pretty ok, if I do say so myself.

Through wanting to do something new, I auditioned for a few roles in amateur productions. My lack of experience, even though it was for people with AS LITTLE BLOODY EXPERIENCE AS ME, was my shortfall. However, I did meet some fantastic people, who too were stuck with experience dilemmas.

Now, through the years, we have all developed some skills that have become valuable and instead of auditioning…we just create our own content.

First one I was involved in:

https://youtu.be/LFz3CjPshw0

This was amazing fun to create.

The second one was a little harder. Mainly as, I thought of the idea during a holiday, and filmed it in a week. Due to the lack of preparation, I was able to get 5 people to help with bodies…and a few with kids to help with sounds.

Huge thanks to the non actors who helped with the footage. Considering I made the fall onto the piss full floor of the alleys in Cwmbran. Sorry guys…you will always be legends in my eyes.

This one was all about the sound…all about the suspense, and we’ll find out before the end of November if we’re winners.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bg0VVP2PUok

The Mighty Fozzy entertainment in association with Time & Space Production has put together our 60 second Horror scene for @Collective_hq @the_ningyo and @lacie_tech #contest #Behindthedoor @time.spacepro

Cast:

Chris Von Ruhland, Thomas Greenhaf, Sarah Rowe, James Rowe, Jay Bayford

Voice Cast

Chris Von Ruhland, Natasha Best, Zoila Garman,

and introducing

“Little Sh*t Faces that won’t go to bed”

Grayson Best, Abbie Davies, Declan Davies

Created By Gavin L Johnson @themytfozzy

Inspiration from Chris Von Ruhland

Pizza Image Designed by Macrovector 

Acquired from www.freepik.com

All rights reserved by the creators.

Screenplay/Script Writing.

Something that didn’t occur to me when attempting writing a screenplay, was to think visual. In a book, the situation is described to you in a certain tense. Past, present, future. Depending on the perspective.

I’m learning that screenplays and scripts are designed to give a visual description of what you would see in screen, with the addition of audience movements and sounds. It seems that instead of a book giving details about why a character is the way they are, it gives brief descriptors.

When it comes to scripts, if feels almost like a comic book. Describe a tile, dialogue, movement, repeat.

Cue step number 2 in this endeavour

A friend of mine sent me a script, and a plan. The plan is to win a competition for a very well shot action sequence.

Knowing my talent and, well my imagination, he asked if I would be available to film the scene. I told him I would be up for helping.

Thats when I read, reread, and read his script some more. I can see it. in my head, how I want it to look. How it will feel, where the action sets are, where the best story telling pieces are. Where we can add drama, where we can add tension. So I wrote a story board for it.

Directorial Debut is in 3 days.

One Marvelous Scene: The first Avenged!

There was an idea… And Nando V Movies jumped at the chance to do the same. He brought together a group of valued movie essayists to write their take on one scene from the MCU in preparation for Avengers: Endgame. I did not have time to write mine before the movie, which is amazing BTW, go bloody watch it.

The full essayist list can be found via the bottom of this post.

The first Avenged.

Yensin. My scene I have taken is the whole set up of Iron Man’s arch. If you consider Tony Stark, you see that most of the flashbacks or story telling shows him as selfish, narcissistic, but brilliant. Then comes three things. The dilemma, the build, and the outcome.

Dilemma: The Yensin dilemma is Tony having to trust a man, in a cave. This man, as far as Tony is concerned, is not helping him. We see the flashes from him floating in and out of consciousness during the surgery. We, the audience, know Yensin is saving Tony’s life. But at this moment, Tony does not, and his reaction is correct. He wakes up, with a car battery attached to him, after being blown up, and the man he saw ‘torturing’ him, is there. This is the start of Tony and his arch of losing the selfishness he has. He now has to learn to trust Yensin. However, a suit for one, for Tony, not Yensin, is where he goes next.

Build: Tony now has a design that he wants to build so he can save the day, and escape. As Yensin points out later in the scene, it was always meant for one. So, even tho Tony is going to ‘save’ them, it was him, looking after number 1. He trusts Yensin enough as a helper to build the suit, but once this is done…so is our poor saviour.

Outcome: This is the bit I love the most. Given the dilemma and build, Tony now has an issue… Not enough time, and through Yensin he learns what self sacrifice looks like. The scene goes off with Yensin picking a gun up and running at the enemy to allow Tony enough time for him to ‘suit up’. By the time Tony gets to Yensin though, he has been filled with bullets.

This brings me to the point… My favourite part, the first Avenged. Yensin is avenged by Tony.

OK, OK, he was going to do all that anyway, but he takes Yensin and his memory away from it. Remember, Yensin told Tony about his family to later say he was going to see them now he’s dying. Tony avenges Yensin later in the film as his first ‘act’ as Iron Man. Heading to Gulmira, and doing his iron man thing.

Disclaimer, I’m not a movie or film essayist, and have not ever written one before as you could see. But I welcome any thoughts, and hope you see where my head is at with this.

Here’s the One Marvellous Scene playlist link 😘 subscribe to these guys, they know their stuff.

Live Streaming Project: A teensy little update.

Live Streaming Project: A teensy little update.

I have successfully streamed and recorded a trial run using my set up. It’s decent enough for a DJ, small production company, and even video casting.

The problems I have encountered, and how I will overcome them!

Back in year 1 of CMT I was introduced to hacking. May sound like I’m going to get your online details and steal your identity, but no. This particular type of hacking is in the form of technology based, physical equipment. I was introduced to Arduino… And Teensy.

Problem 1: The speed of the laptop I used for the test is actually terrible. It takes about fifteen minutes to load a basic program, like documents. I think the timer is about seven minutes when you right click, and that is a long time to wait for a simple menu. So, imagine what happened when I plugged in four rather powerful webcams. Fantastic guess there guys, yep, you are right. None worked. To overcome this, and if you have similar issues, I recommend you try this first, I had to lower the resolution down to almost watch face size. The results though, the lower the resolution, the more of the cameras worked. When I had the resolution at 1364 x 768, only one camera worked. Two worked at 908 x 512, and when I got to 496 x 278 I had all four cameras working. However, as you can imagine, 496 x 278 picture quality is that of opening your eyes under water. We’ve all done it, and it’s fuzzy. Yeah, you could see the pictures, but it was not the quality I was after.

Problem solved! So to speak.

Problem 2: Changing scenes without using the laptop. Open Broadcast Software (OBS) is free to use and as of yet, I have not found a suitable controller for scene switching…or have I?

I have set up my scenes and used the in software ‘HotKeys’ to set up numbers 1 through 4, 9, and 0, to represent scenes. 9 is the stream take-over, which is a scene that is basically the thumbnail that shows to allow viewer to see the stream will begin soon. 0 is the end credits or after scene. And 1 through 4 are various camera angles sent up. For example, one camera has been cropped on two scenes, as it’s a wide shot if covers two people on a sofa. By cropping the shot on two separate scenes, I can use one camera for two angles. Win!

But, I’m stuck with the laptop camera being available but, it just watches the person directing. Insert Teensy here!!!

I’m gonna build one. I’m going to use a teensy I bought for a past project, program it to allow buttons to send a keyboard signal, probably numbers. This way, the scene changes can be controlled by the host of a live broadcast, much like most video tubers have. Obviously mine will be a lot lower budget, and made out of what ever I have available to had. The first trial run of this will be on May 5th, for the marathon, mentioned in another blog.

Problem 3: I’m having a little trouble with audio. Getting sound into OBS is easy, also I have microphones and a USB mixing desk so that is all good to. However, having the mics in frame, is not the professional look I’m aiming for. I want them either off camera, or completely hidden/blended in with the scene. I’m probably going to go with lapel microphones, with extension cables to the mixing desk. Each extension will be in place before the guests, actors, tubers, are in place, with all levels tested. This is not the best way to get the best sound out of the situation, but as mention many times, I’m aiming to be affordable to people like me, who just want to do what the professionals do, but to an average Joe budget.

The Controller

The design is simple. A teensy, six buttons, a few cables, and a hand holdable case…to which I have an old harmonica that is broken, but has a useful case.

The Plan: Once the coding of the teensy is done and tested to ensure it controls 0, 9, and 1 through 4 on a standard qwerty keyboard, I will drill a few holes in the box to fit the teensy, buttons, and USB cable. Then, I’ll temporarily attach everything and test it. Once happy, I’ll glue and re-glue all the bits inside the box, and then before completion, I’ll cover the box in sticky back decorative plastic or stickers, and glue it shut. I’m still deciding if I’m going to ‘pad out’ the inside to give it some dexterity while being held. This will be decided during test phase.

UPDATE 1: I failed with this, I wired the buttons wrong. So, I found a Twitch Switch tutorial on YouTube, and I’m going to follow that.

UPDATE 2:

I bloody did it. Well, huge thanks to www.nuts&bots.com for the tutorials, design, and code.

Here is the fully working, progression photo blah blah for ya. Enjoy. Also, if you want one, email me, and I’ll build you one to.

Yep. I branded it too. 😂

Live Streaming Project: A teensy little update.

Live streaming Project: An additional service.

Current project:

A few years ago I was tasked with supporting a friend with a podcast. It was epic, and fun, and called Let’s Chat Geek. You can find more about it in the projects tab. It occurred to me that being able to offer a streaming option as a service, would come in very handy for people who just want to ‘do’ what ever it is they’re doing. For example, Shane @letschatgeek, just wanted to sit in front of a mic and talk. He was happy controlling the Web-based business side of the podcast, but needed a techy to do the producing bit. Cue Foz.

When I joined, I had limited knowledge and equipment to carry out a podcast. So, I purchased some cheap mics, a cheap Macbook, and a cheap mixing desk. I learned it was not difficult for me to do what was needed. We achieved what we wanted. But, it was recording the show, then I would do a little editing, and then Shane would upload it.

What next?

Over the years, I’ve thought about filming, and producing, and editing film. I bought a decent camera, and took some epic photos:

Yep, all me. Not bad, huh?

This was the start. Luck would drop another opportunity on my lap when Time & Space Productions contacted me asking for editing assistance. Thomas met me a few years back at an audition, that didn’t go anywhere. But, it brought me to him. He sent me some footage and asked my to edit the footage into a ten to fifteen minute show. So, I did…with additional extras. The show required an introduction, title cards, credits, sound. Pretty much, the whole nine yards…so I complied and The Mighty Fozzy Entertainment was born. If you want to see what editing and additions I did, check it out in the projects tab.

Where are we now?

Hale to the Ale is on series two. Currently in preproduction. I have been tasked with finding a faster, more professional way to film. And I think I have found it.

Through DJing, I have noticed a lot of DJs live stream their performance over Facebook. Through my gaming, I know there is a way to do this through other means. One, the biggest of all, YouTube. Recently, I have been playing around with different webcams, through Open Broadcast Software (OBS), and old laptops, and I think I have found the next way of filming. By the way, everything I do is to a budget, for this my budget was one hundred pounds. This budget is yet to be reached. I purchased four HD webcams, a USB 3.0 splitter, and a midi key controller. These, in collaboration with OBS will be perfect for streaming.

Our first test, using mobile tethering, will be during Newport’s marathon on May 5th 2019. If this date has passed, see my YouTube page for the video.

The luxury I have for this, is that it ticks a box in university. I have to complete a performance for one of my final projects. The external examiner will be watching the stream. Hopefully, he or she would have read this, and will know that I will be replying to comments in the stream during the day. No, I’m not taking requests unless you are a runner.

So, tune in on May 5th for the first test of the stream, and May 8th for the second trial of it.

If you want to know more or want to learn about this service, contact us via the contact tab.

This post is in progress, as the project is ongoing. Thanks for reading 😘