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“A Sound Life” film: 22 MB has grown to 15 GB–of writing

Used to stand in the alcove of our family room at my 1940s Hamilton Drafting Desk, with a bright view of the San Francisco Bay, writing. Now I’ve set up my office/editing bay in our lot in Oakland, where we raise turkeys in the summertime, chickens, fruit trees and vegetables year-round.

Over the six years I’ve been working on “A Sound Life,” a short doc film, twenty-two megabytes has grown 434 megabytes or 15GB–of writing!


Unless someone asks about my project, I’ve kept to myself about it. I’ve been busy logging footage and diegetic sounds (sound effects that happened coincidentally during filming, like church bells, brake squeals and my subject’s Porsche engine). This has gone on for 5 months. It’s wasn’t exciting, but necessary. Thank God I’ve finished logging twelve memory cards. I added up all the gigs I shot (leave your guess in the comment area after this post). It’s certainly the most footage I’ve ever shot for for a film project, dating back to homeschool-like cinematography studies at the University of Arizona in the late 80s. (We met in rooms with no air conditioning in one hundred plus degree heat.) I digress.

Anyway, I took a snapshot of some of the documents I’ve written.  Check it out.

Screen Shot 2016-01-10 at 2.48.45 PMWhat?  You can’t see it?  Basically there are oodles of topics I’ve written for my current film project, “A Sound Life” including:

Early phone interview questions

Interview questions for subject including background, creative process, problems and philosophy

Interview questions for Directors 

Interview questions with Re-Recording Sound Experts

Justification, Treatment, Outline, Synopsis of film

Working titles, Themes, Story

Descriptions of the look and the mood of the film 

Design, elements of art research--in art

Design and elements of art--in film soundtracks

Beatnik history in San Francisco's North Beach 

Prospective music

Audio logging of Zoom recordings

Shot lists, List of B roll needed

Photo, Audio and Video Releases

Art Release Agreement, Location Agreement and Music Agreements

Emails and texts to my Subject, writing down phone notes

Social Media Tweets, Instagram and Facebook posts

That list is only the tip of the iceberg compared to the 6 TB of content on my hard drive; but that’s mostly video which I had to transcribe and later shape into a story!

Now do you believe me when I say that writing is a big part of the filmmaking process?

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5 Responses to ““A Sound Life” film: 22 MB has grown to 15 GB–of writing”

  1. patricia

    I hope I’m not one of those people who seem to be shifting her stance when you talk about your project–I enjoy hearing about it! Seeing you inspired about your own work and your future makes me excited about my own. It all seems like such a natural evolution of all of these years of homeschooling. Keep writing and working, my friend! (And I really like that photo of you!)

    • Kristin

      Hi Tricia,

      Actually, you’ve always been very kind to ask or to listen to me go on about my film project. And you’ve helped me out numerous times with C by being her contact at park day while I’m on a shoot. It’s hard for me to ask for help and to make arrangements like that; and I’m very appreciative of your continued support.

      Our future beyond homeschooling the last of our three kids is sort of a big unknown, but not completely. At least we don’t have to figure out what it is we want to do. We’ve never had the luxury or time to pursue our interests like a job; soon that will change. We just can’t imagine what it will be like to have free time!

      Honestly, I credit you for getting me on a path to carve out time for myself and be creative. I recall sitting in your kitchen sharing my dream with you to make films again while you made me a perfect homemade chai tea–and listened. Always a good listener. And you got me started blogging.

      I guess that’s another reason why I like to treat you to decaf almond cappuccinos–so please don’t argue with me about doing that until our last year of homeschooling is over.


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