Wednesday, January 28, 2015

#HobbitChallenge Beginnings

This past weekend, a few friends and I got together to film a video. What kind of video? A very nerdy video. A video entry for the #HobbitChallenge!!! :D

In case you didn't know, The Hobbit is hosting a contest where the contestants have to film a recreation of one of three scenes: "Good Morning," from An Unexpected Journey, "Hide and Seek with Smaug" from The Desolation of Smaug, or "I Am Not Alone" from The Battle of the Five Armies.

About two weeks ago, when the scenes to choose from were released, Karis (who I've mentioned several times before on here, and who blogs over at The Horse Nextdoor) and I decided we should attempt the "Good Morning" scene, between Gandalf and Bilbo. We knew it would be so much fun, no matter how it turned out or how well we did in the competition.

And so we began the preproduction process for our little video. :D

First was brainstorming, along with casting. This part was easy -- Karis is short, so she gets to play Bilbo. I'm tall, so I'm Gandalf. End of story. ;)

With this in mind, we decided to really play up the "feminine" flip on the characters. For instance, Bilbo sips tea instead of smoking a pipe, and Gandalf doesn't have a beard and wears a skirt. Oh wait -- he already does that... "No! It's a tunic!" ;D

The brainstorming continued for our set location, props, film angles, etc., and we began putting together our costumes. No, neither of us made any part of the costumes (except some alterations I made to Gandalf's hat) since we had a deadline to meet (February 1st), but the costumes still turned out much better than I was expecting them too, which I was so happy about... considering costumes are one of my favorite things about movie making. :D

Next began the actual production, which took place on a cloudy Sunday after church. Karis and I recruited our friends Amber and Emily to be our "film crew," and so we all congregated at Karis' house for a 2 hour shoot. Before we could do any filming, however, Emily and I combined our efforts to curl Karis' very straight hair, set up our location for the scene, and prepped the cameras.

Which was actually rather amusing -- we had four cameras during the shoot. We used mine for filming, Amber's for production stills, Karis' DSLR for character shots and her little point-and-shoot for a behind-the-scenes vlog. (We didn't use the DSLR for the cinematography because it didn't have as good video settings as mine.) This multiple-camera setup was great, and totally made us feel all professional. Like, literally, the whole production of our video has been exactly like professional movie making -- just without moolah involved and on a super small scale. ;)

So, the shoot went quite well, and took about two or three hours. It was seriously cold, and windy, but thankfully the rain held off until we had wrapped, and then it started pouring (which was totally a God thing). Poor Karis was getting hypothermia, though, since she was wearing hobbit clothes fit for a warm, spring day. (I lucked out with all my costume layers!) Just goes to show how dedicated we were. Hah!

As for the scene itself... we got alot of great footage. We also got alot of not-so-great footage, like when Gandalf forgot what kind of morning it was, or when Karis' ponies came over to crash our party. (We're going to have a very long blooper reel.)

I hope you're getting the impression of how much fun we had with making this thing. ;)

Anyway, after filming, our little movie crew went through all the footage and pictures, which was just great. Lots of hilarity and some surprisingly good footage as well.

Now it is Wednesday, and we're in the final stages of postproduction as Karis edits the 2 minute clip. It'll be up on Youtube by tomorrow, and once it's there I'll be posting the link on my Facebook and Twitter pages. (Yes, those are both fairly new developments, and I hope you'll go and like/follow me! I love talking and interacting with you guys, and FB and twitter make that a bit easier. :))

Buuuut... in the meantime, enjoy this little "behind the scenes commentary" from Karis and I. :D

P.S. I promised you guys some more pictures from my battle Tauriel photo shoot, aaaand they *are* coming!! I've just got so many things I want to blog about, and no time. Hopefully within the week there will be a post featuring them -- it's in my drafts folder currently, just waiting for edited pictures. ;)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

[Battle] Tauriel Cosplay - Photoshoot Sneak Peak

So, to mix up my post topics a bit, I wanted to share with you all what I did last Sunday...

My two friends Amber and Karis, my older sister Crystal and I had a cosplay photoshoot!!! Yes, for battle Tauriel. And let me tell you, these three are incredible photographers.

Needless to say, with these talented peeps, three really nice cameras, beautiful weather, an epic location, and an elf for a subject, the photos turned out better than I even imagined -- though many turned out terrible and hilarious and hideous as well. You don't get to see those of course. Gotta maintain my image, right... jk, jk. ;D

There's around 400 photos in all, and I've narrowed it down to 150 favorites... SOOOOO I'm currently in the process of editing up my very favorite favorites. ;) But in the meantime, I wanted to give you guys a quick sneak peak picture of the shoot, courtesy of Karis.

More pictures coming soon -- from le cosplay photo shoot and New Zealand! :)

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Journey to New Zealand: More of Our Visit to Welly

Ah, you didn't expect another post so soon! I had a bit of time, and figured I'd make good use of it since I'll be so busy starting... tomorrow.

But anyway, this is the follow up to my last post about the Hobbit costumes in Wellington! Here follows a few select pictures of everything else we saw/visited while in Wellington (which I'm obsessed with calling "Welly" because I feel like a Kiwi when I do. ;D).

Just to give you an idea of the amount of pictures I took on this trip, they number 918 in all. I'm trying to find an easy way to upload them all to my blog, so that whoever wants to look through them can... but still working on that. ;) In the meantime, I (as usual) hope you enjoy the following pictures, of the rest of our adventures in Wellington!

Driving into Wellington.
The Te Papa museum.
...which had a giant statue of Azog the Defiler and was fully creepy. :D

Uhm yes Hobbit fans will recognise this place... :D :D :D The theater where ROTK and AUJ premiered!!! Yes, they were showing BOTFA, and we almost went to see it... but time restrictions inhibited that. :P
"The Tripod," made by Weta Workshop, to commemorate Wellington's film industry. ;)
One of my favorite stops in Wellington, we visited the Weta Cave and got to take their epic "Window into Workshop" tour!!!
Of course I had to get pics with the trolls outside the shop!! ;D
And here's where things get really cool... very near Weta, I found Park Road Post.  WHICH IS WHERE THEY EDITED THE HOBBIT AND LOTR FILMS AND I COMPLETELY FREAKED OUT.
No but wait, it gets even better. Two streets over from Park Road is Stone Street... WHICH IS OF COURSE HOME TO STONE STREET STUDIOS WHERE THEY BUILD ALL THE SETS FOR BOTH TRILOGIES AND WHERE THEY WORKED AND JDSKLFJDSLKFFAKLJAK. Of course, it was all locked up tight, but we dd drive around the back and saw...
(what's through the gate...?)
An adorable calf (there were tons of cows in NZ, btw) on our way to Rivendell!!!
"Lord of the Rings Film Location"
Now, the whole walk was gorgeous, and even though there's nothing left of the Rivendell set now, the maps did point all the places it was built out! Aaaaand this place, which was the setting for all those promotional photos of Legolas for LOTR!!!
A huge archway the park put in, feat. my sis Alissa! ;)
One of our final stops was a visit to the Wellington airport, which I knew had alot of Hobbit awesomeness that we just had to go see... including Smaug...
Gandalf and the eagles...
And Gollum!!!!

Wellington's capital building.
Goodbye, Wellington!!! I enjoyed my stay more than I can say. :D

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Journey to New Zealand: Hobbit Costumes in Wellington!

This is the second part of my "picture posts" of my New Zealand trip. I loved reading all your comments on my last post, and am so glad you enjoyed seeing those pics and experiencing NZ through me, in a way! ;)

And now I'm back home. I got back last Wednesday, quite late. There is so much to tell, but I'm recovering from wisdom tooth surgery currently, and am just plain weary, honestly. Which is also why I haven't replied to the e-mails sitting in my inbox, or to any comments on my blog -- for which I apologize sincerely. Another post is coming on that, but for now...

Enjoy the pictures of the Hobbit "costume trail" through Wellington that we were able to see!!!! We visited all the costumes, except for one (Oin, who was a bit out of the way and I didn't really mind missing his costume. ;)).

The first costume we saw was Tauriel, making my Tauriel costume journey come full circle!!!! It was the most incredible thing to see the real costume, worn by Evangeline Lilly herself, up close and in real life. It was like... there it is. There is the costume I've seen so much in pictures and in the movies, right there, close enough to touch. And needless to say, it made me want to remake my costume and make it 900% more accurate! xD

Also, I was so much more excited than I looked. Just keep in mind, I had a cold during the whole trip. ;D

And lastly - please excuse the terrible quality of some of these. The natural lighting did horrors to the pics. :p

Here follows the dream come true for a cosplaying Hobbit fangirl. ^_^

Mirkwood Guard
Kili scale, with Kili full-size behind (I just could not get a decent picture of his!)

Needless to say... I still can't believe I saw all these amazing costumes. In real life. I was fangirling so hard the entire time we were touring around, finding the costumes nestled away in random stores and hotels... it was just great. One of my favorite things on the trip. :D

Friday, January 2, 2015

Journey to New Zealand - Hawaii to Hobbiton (Pictures)

Yes, it is true, guys!!! I am currently in our hotel in Wellington, relaxing after a long day of walking around the city sightseeing. The whole experience so far has been beyond surreal, and SOOOOOOO amazing!!! I'm fangirling for all of you, and you better believe I wish I could have taken every single person who wanted to come. That would have been INCREDIBLY fun, for everyone involved!! :D

But, as it is, my dad, older sister and I have been having the time of our lives here in New Zealand, and I'm going to stop chatting and share the pics I know you've been dying to see.

And don't worry -- when I get home, I'll be posting alot more than just pictures! I'm journaling about everything, so you'll get to hear all the details. ;)

I hope you enjoyed the pics -- more will come soon!!! And I can't wait to tell you about NZ in more detail than just pictures. :D

Until later!