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Sunday, November 08, 2009

Zhu Dan touches her... Guzheng

It's strange how quickly a week had just flown by like that. It happens all the time when I'm in post-production for a film. Each day just goes by in a blur, and I myself lose the concept of day and night, for the past few nights I had spent sleepless nights in the editing lab for my new short film THE WHITE FLOWER. I usually go home around 6am, sometimes I get to eat breakfast, and then sleep at around 8am, then waking up at 12pm, and then going back to work again.

THE WHITE FLOWER is a challenging film because, aside from it being constructed almost entirely with still photos (which is a nightmare to edit by itself), I myself still have to various sound jobs. Recording voiceover narrations from the three main characters, recording sound effects, downloading sound effects, discussing with my two primary collaborators, Niklas (the cinematographer) and Woan Foong (the composer) about what I need for the film through the net (Niklas is in Finland, Woan Foong is in US), because I'm a crazy nocturnal, the time difference doesn't affect me much.

I always believe that you learning something new whenever you make a film, and for me, making short films is a constant learning experience for filmmaking, that's why I've been so prolific this year (shot 6 short films this year, though only four will be in my official record this year, since I've merged two into one, and another was just a practice for a cinematographer course I took) For THE WHITE FLOWER, I can say that I learn the most when it came to sound, having to teach myself how to do sound mixing and all after recording.

Two days ago I had to record some guzheng music for the film. So I enlisted the only guzheng player I know in Japan, my good friend Zhu Dan, who is also the unfortunate main actress of THE WHITE FLOWER.

This is me carrying her guzheng into my lab.

Me carrying Zhu Dan's guzheng

(To the uninitiated, Zhu Dan plays a guzheng player in the film)

Back in this old post of mine, I posted these videos of the film shoot.

(Click here if you cannot see the embedded video player)

(Click here if you cannot see the embedded video player)

But anyway, back in Friday, I asked Zhu Dan to play a couple of pieces with her guzheng, and she did.

I have recorded our recording session on video, because I'm narcissistic and I felt that one of these days, I have to record myself in action and directing, so here you go. My buddy Kong, who was one of the three main actors of THE WHITE FLOWER, was there to help out as well.

(click here if you cannot see embedded video)

At the 1:13 minute mark, she asked whether I've switched off the camera (she was paranoid about being filmed that day, being without make-up and all), I said "yup, switched off". She wasn't dumb enough to fall for that though, hence the laughter. Of course, I assured her that it was really about filming myself.