Rainbows in my office

December 17, 2010

Yes, folks, there are rainbows in my office. They are little tiny multi-coloured, cheery little things. On the floor. It’s nice, when the sun hits the window at just the right angle and the rainbows softly land, like faerie people with their soft toes and feathery designs. Or at least, that is how I perceive them to be. The rainbows. The homes of the faerie people.

It makes it a nice place to work – an historic building off Summerside Harbour, where we sail in summer. So that even in winter when the gaily decorated prisms make landfall, they illuminate the space with memories of warmer sunshiny days on the sailboat, and they illuminate my soul.

Somedays it is harder to illuminate one’s soul. So the multi-coloured rainbows help. These days, I dunno, maybe it’s the green hue to the outdoors this close to Christmas (one week brings us to Christmas Eve) that makes me feel rather glum, or maybe it’s all this work and wondering where it is going, if anywhere.

I believe I have come a long ways in the two years since I arrived on the Island of my dreams after graduating from Vancouver Film School. First the eye surgery, then starting the business, then financing a camera (my baby – a Sony EX3, Full HD), getting the editing set up, learning the gear, going, going, going to try to come up withe some product to make ends meet. The shoulder surgery, which set me back months. It is not easy, the life of an entrepreneur, especially – and you can pardon me for saying this, but I believe it’s true – in this day and age as a woman. There. I’ve said it – as a woman. In my former life, as a museum curator, I fit the niche. But now, at 40-something, a recent film school graduate, a camera operator – I run into it all the time. The latest is a friend’s film – I love this guy and I love his script, and I support him one hundred per cent. But the only woman on his crew (besides the Producer) is the gal in the art department. It wouldn’t be as glaringly 1930’s to me if I hadn’t run into it in other areas – the local competition for the bread and butter jobs here, the promotional videos and commercials – fit the profile of multi-media professionals. I do not.

However, being one who believes in faerie people living on little rainbows in my office, ahem, I think I may have discovered a niche for myself. I have started approaching women’s groups and non-profits about doing mini-docs for them – soft sells that will be bettered by a woman’s touch, by my touch as a filmmaker who loves faces, emotions, letting the camera roll to capture that extra little glint, the Karsch-like evocative image that is really the tiniest, most minute little glimpse into the authentic soul of a person. That’s what I am striving for as a filmmaker or, if you prefer, as a storyteller. This is the gist I believe I have, and the one that will make me successful. Patience. Time. The extra touch.

The thing is, we all have a choice in life – we can choose the good or the bad. Here’s an example – there are seasonal reasons why I am also bummed today. I am being grinchlike and have yet to purchase a Christmas tree or decorate. I am not feeling Christmasy. My son is in Alberta for the second year in a row, I have seen him for five short days this past year and, what bothers me the most is that I know it is the right place for him. He is twenty and independent, but is living in the same city as his Dad, who does Christmas up right every year, and who has the money to take him out to dinner, to buy him that 52 inch tv. They are going snowmobiling (yes, they have snow!) and campfiring and singing and partying, and I am a wee bit jealous, but of course happy for them as well.  I choose to be happy for him. I am choosing to believe that he is happy and so I should be happy. What I am trying to say is that I am trying. I wonder if that is enough.

The little rainbows on my office floor remind me to be grateful for what I have, and that, even if all this hard work and poverty relating to building a business completely backfires, there is one gift that I can leave my son that outweighs all the time apart. It’s slowly getting put up on Vimeo.com, it’s my time with my son this year, my only time, and it’s called A Time To Drum.

For everything there is a season,
And a time for every matter under heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
A time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
A time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to seek, and a time to lose;
A time to keep, and a time to throw away;
A time to tear, and a time to sew;
A time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate,
A time for war, and a time for peace.

A Time to Drum. (excuse my addition to this lovely verse)

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

So if you are looking for me over the holidays, you won’t find me under the tree. You will find me in the little office with the rainbows and the faerie people, editing a silly little web series that probably only really deeply means something to myself. And maybe to the faerie people.

And that, my friend, is what makes it all okay.

Cheers, and Happy Christmas

Susan

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