“The Connection:” conceived and created especially for The University of Western Australia’s MachinimUWA Vll: Transcending Borders.
I’m going to be very honest here, I didn’t think we would be entering the prestigious machinima challenge this year, for many reasons, but resumed in a compound sentence, we didn’t feel that call to competition and I actually thought I might be judging this year, not entering.
Fate has a way of pushing us one way or the other sometimes, when we are astride and trying to ride that fence line..”Should we?” Shouldn’t we?” but even I succumbed to the carrot of temptation, when I saw what the theme would be this year.
Nat casually asked me one day if I wanted to do a film with her for the UWA , and I said I was not really inspired. RL had pulled me out of virtual worlds a bit in 2014 and I felt my muse was not very strong, and I had slacked off on my poetry too. I said I couldn’t even imagine an idea we might do, when she dropped the carrot my way (usually I am tempting her with one in the other direction) by telling me “The theme is pretty interesting. It’s called, “Transcending Borders”
Boom! Some lights went off inside… but I still had no clear idea..what it would be about. I said, “Give me a few days to see if I can come up with an idea we both like, or feel free to be the one who does that, but it’s an interesting concept..so maybe…yes”
The rest is history as they say… I realized we had a perfect story to fit the theme, but does one do stories like this? How to make the focus universal,. and not personal..etc etc. Still, all my inner voices were yelling, “Go for it”
I won’t go into details here, and maybe if you feel inspired to make comments, that would be a good place to talk more about the focus of our video within the theme. What both Nat and I really want, is for you to watch it… then we can talk:)
But I do want to say a few things about the making of this one, number 15; that sometimes it proved too much for Nat’s software, and we had scare after scare and crash after crash.. After a particularly bad day..Nat sent me this photo..and I share it with you. I always use the metaphor that to hook Nat into our next project I need a nice juicy carrot..to lure her in (usually the first draft of a soundtrack and the idea) but this carrot almost choked her:) as it was Too Big for her outdated editing software:)
We have been lucky in the past that somehow the Calvary gets sent in to save us in the nick of time..(last year we had a train movie, and the train wouldn’t move until about 2 weeks before deadline!)
This year was no exception.
So against all odds and some outdated software, and then the generosity of a friend and some new software, we can proudly present our film. This is our entry for 2014, but it is also our story, and our good luck for being able to make this connection.
I want to thank our graceful galloping horses, Shesa Quandry, Gamma Infinity, Dale Innis. Along with Nat and I, they kicked up splashes, drops and dust across the screen. Special thanks to my number one leading man, and number one villain, Odracir Wrigglesworth. Without all their help…we would have only an outline and some music, not a movie.
I will say one last thing…
I know the days of the blog are fading away. I have talked about this with other die-hard bloggers and we all agree. Facebook with its easy “Likes” has made all of us at times a more dumb-downed version of ourselves when it comes to giving and showing support and making comments on blogs.
It’s very easy to click a Like and walk away without even having to put it into words in your own head, for example: what you actually liked about it.
Please…take the time to really comment here or on YouTube, or even better both, if our movie made you feel something. Making a comment (because it does take time) is a really tangible gesture of generosity. I promise you, Nat and I will cherish what you have to say, even if you are critical, we want to know how our movie affected you. We read your comments, even years later. They stay and serve to inspire and re-inspire. A Like doesn’t last past the click:)
9000 kilometers apart… but this is our 15th video Collaboration.
We proudly take you behind the scenes of that connection Enjoy!
For those who would like to translate the narrative into another language ,
here it is below:
we make it look easy…
but its not…
and it’s not about us…
it transcends us…
where we meet…
there are no egos and no borders…
there are no limits
We send thousands of typed words flying back and forth in fiber -optic English
We send gigabytes of footage,
megabytes of sound
back and forth across the Atlantic Sea
This connection is outside of voice, outside our mother tongue
Really.. I never heard her say
(German for “That’s super!”)
(German for “That will never work” )
Tell me, what fence line, what border, what sky-high wall can stop imagination in flight?
What walls still exist, when we can break through age, religion, culture, location?
We trust each other and one idea sparks another
Not lovers in the conventional sense..we are creators
In a world with no bodies, only minds, souls, hearts and imagination
There is a visualizer and a vocalizer
without one or the other…we lose the magic
In the virtual age where synergy reigns
every creation is greater than the sum of its parts
Ours is just one story……
This is amazing, Kari and Natascha! It really brings the virtual world into real time in film
, even while conveying the magic of the surreal and pixel world in which you film and convey the stories! Just fantastic to see the collaboration between the two of you along with those who participate and add their two-scripts worth. “Every creation is greater than the sum of its parts,” says it all, “across the Atlantic…in fiber-optic English.” Absolutely wonderful; yes, at once a dream and then again magic! I am delighted and honored to have had the opportunity to see this with the two of you and the other fine company on hand. Including those remarkable and whimsical actor friends. Kudos, and best wishes in the UWA competition! 🙂 ❤
Thank you for your generous and encouraging comment Luna and also for sharing our film on your Facebook.It was a pleasure to have you with us, in our small launching of our film into the wider world. Once we let it go, it’s no longer ours, and belongs to the public and public opinion. The UWA Machinima Challenge, sparks so much creativity every year and this years’ theme as I stated above, is something I think we can all relate to, if we are residents in this magical land..our “other reality” Thank you again for coming and your support of our style and brand of virtual art in collaboration. Hugss
Awesome piece…great visuals and profound thoughts.
Thank you Seth for leaving this comment and for liking our latest project. You have been doing that for many many years now:) Thanks again!
The familiarity of the visuals was so awesome, like reliving the visions you two have shared of our ‘second lives’ over the years, simultaneously enjoying the unleashed creativity gushing from the minds of everyone involved… very surreal, totally captivating and core deep, soul deep. Standing APPLAUSE and wolf whistles for your amazing performances and for sharing with the world!
quite engaging and thoughtful…Love what you did with the horses…I watched it twice…
my favorite line..Tell me what fence line, what border, what sky high wall, can stop imagination in flight…??
Just because of my personal taste, I would have liked it to be a little lighter…it conveyed darkness to me and it is such a positive and phenomenal gift you speak of…
thank you for sharing…and good luck!
Why thank you turtle for watching our film and leaving this very thoughtful comment. Yes, I know what you mean about you “wish it were a little lighter” We have made some films that skirt and surf the darker edges, some for contests that were about that, and sometime just because..well just because we both can easily go there:) We have some really light ones..,(comedies) we decided not to include in this tapestry, but I appreciate your opinion and your taking the time too, to write this comment. Thank you too for your best wishes:)
Thank you Diz..Your support and your intuitive connect with what we do is really an inspiration for us to keep doing it:) You have seen all our productions..all 15 and many that weren’t in this one. In every case, you so easily dove into them and brought up something each time, that lets us know..yes you went right down to the bottom of what we were trying to say, or do…With you in our corner, we hope to make many many more and hope that each one makes you let out a “wolf whistle too:) HUGSS Sis..Thank you again
Wonderful as usual. I shared it around a bit as noted here;
Thank you again Minethere for passing it on to others..This video although it is entered in a competition, was really made with the focus of entertaining those who already enjoy what we do when we let our imaginations fly. It never would have been made without my Kitely worlds, “Float” and “Vortex” which inspired me to try some texture manipulations that led to our fiber-optic cable. Thank you for all your support!
A comment … just one comment? I wouldn’t even know where to start. I will try and put into words what my thoughts and feelings were while watching – and after! – and fit them all into a blog post. Make it move – because YOU can!
Aww joey thank you so much for your words and I look forward to translating your blog piece too. As a writer, I know you see how amazing virtual worlds can be, as another dimension to your own art. I so enjoyed being at your reading yesterday, and Natascha is the very best simultaneous translator…a girl could ask for 🙂
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the reason you titled it ‘The Connection’ dawned on me when I was making the blog post about the film, and started with the line… ‘The Germany-Costa Rica connection brings to us ‘the Connection’, and I was wondering if I should reword as i used the same word twice, and then I realised that I HAD to leave the sentence as I wrote it 🙂
Smiling, I noticed that on the UWA Blog and thought “Well what else could Jay Jay say?” 🙂 From our first entry in the Seek Wisdom Challenge, we have been perfecting (and hopefully continue to perfect) the skills needed to transcend the creative borders as we already feel in our minds no distance between us. Themes like this one ( I applaud Professor Ted Snell’s vision and choice of Transcending Borders) stimulate us to create visuals and machinima of this extremely interesting multi-layered idea.
Oh I have for many years referred to you guys as the Costa Rica-Germany connection 🙂 like this http://uwainsl.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/machinimuwa-vi-karima-hoisan-natascha.html
Amazing and meaningful as always, you two (three, five, seven…), and again so honored and delighted to have had even a tiny part in it (such fun being a horse!). Glad you found this carrot irresistible. (And fully agree with your thoughts on actual comments vs the all-too-easy “like”; good words!)
Thanks galloping Dale and high strutter on a table top:) You are one who continue to be part of the whole..Although we incredibly did not need your scripting expertise this year, your interest and encouragement through out the process spurred us all on (pun intended) hehe. Oh and thank you for a real comment. Everyone has been wonderful about that this time too.:) Was it something I said? *winks
Karima and Natascha…This is a great piece of artistry on all levels! Cinema, music, choreography, writing, collaboration, and digital animation! The two of you continue to amaze. And your transcendence of borders is just the beginning of “who knows what?” The two of you are pioneers. Please continue to produce!
Thank you Hoyt for your very nice comment..:) I am so glad to know our latest video has pleased and entertained you..We have talked of this many times..the amazing way virtual worlds draws us all together..I remember thinking as we galloped down the beach..from the East Coast of the US to the West…from Central America to Europe..these horses have come galloping to be in that scene..Very heady stuff when you think all this takes place in real time..nothing animated..there is a person running on four legs tucked inside:)
Impressive work Karima. You weaved the visuals with the flow of the poem masterfully. I’m happy Kitely could play a small part in the creation of this wonderful piece of art.
Thank you Ilan and believe me both Nat and I agree that Kitely played an enormous role in the making of this film. We did use green screen to include our avatars for example in the shark scenes from Float, but the day is coming, and coming fast, when we could film something like this 100% there. Thank you for your continual appreciation of our machinima connection.
It is truly our pleasure Karima, we’re honored that you continue to use Kitely for creating some of your machinimas.
Thank you Ilan and both Nat and I are thinking about a really big project we would love to shoot there.. Natascha is the part of our team who films and edits all those great Kitely shots into our story.. As a creative partnership we are one:)
Then you both deserve a LOT of credit for your amazing videos 🙂
I look forward to seeing what you conjure up next time.
As always, I don’t know what to say what still isn’t said:)
Karima told you mostly all of what is history now and if I remember right she told me, she wants to write only a short blogpost about:)
But okies, there are one or two tiny things about “The Connection” I can tell you. One thing is, there are more little insiders in this movie than in any other we made. Try to find them:)
On the other hand, there is this hypnotic film score and the powerful words and you have these pictures in mind, while listening to it. And then you have the limitations of virtual worlds!
We brainstormed a lot of things, a lot of powerful pictures and then we toss them away. Not possible, to corny…etc lots of reasons to toss them away. I mean, in my opinion it is a BIG story and it is worth to make BIG pictures. But not those block buster after effects orgies. Oh sometimes I like them, but nor for this one. The Connection was, or is? worth to do things we never done before. As always we go where no one has gone before (ok just kidding:)). And of course we did things we have never done before
But I mean, you know what I mean.
We shot more footage than ever and one idea sparked another while shooting and that was something soo great, that sometimes I thought I am in a movie about a movie making a movie in a movie about making a movie…
If that all sounds a bit confused, watch our movie again and you will know:)
As always Nat doesn’t know what to say (smiles) and then… she says it so wonderfully! I wish I had a quarter for all the files we sent back and forth to finally see this film completed. I think I could treat all my readers to lunch 😉 Nat is right we had bigger Images than sometimes could be realized but I want to say here, Nat came up with some visuals ( horses on the table and dancers) that I would never have believed possible, for this i give her the official title “Queen of Green” for all her amazing greenscreen work (“greenies”) as she calls them 😉 and this time I get my name in the credits as SFX (special effects) because the cable was a real sim wide tube (on Kitely) and it rocked:) Thank you Nat for your amazing talent and your willingness to work with me who says at least 300 times in the making of our films, “Oh Nat, I love it just a few tiny things Ithink we could change” hee hee and… the rest is our history that connects us. Hugs Nat, here’s to #16 and on and on. I loved your comment!
Well! This film is brilliant! And we get a glimpse into this dynamic duo of Natasha and Karima! they take us on a deep rich journey into the luminous, brimming potential of cyber space, where they gleefully create their images out of nothing. So many borders are transcended! I love alll the flashes of past films interwoven into this magical journey into the act of creation…. dynamic movement, all original, even the music… and the seductive velvet tones of Karimas voice drawing us deeper! Congratulations and Bravo!
Thank you my dear RL friend Jan for your support and your great comment! You maybe are the one person I know who does not spend time in virtual worlds and yet you get them totally. You were one of the few who “defended my right to create in them” I loved taking you to Kitely last week, and then stumbling upon your paintings, your own art that graces so many of my worlds..How we are all inter-connected in a way that would have been impossible for, let’s say, our parents. Big Hugs and much gratitude to you my friend…
A wonderful tribute to a unique creative duo, that could only have come together at this point in history. Looking forward to your continuing collaborations, and the stories and worlds that unfold as a result!
Thank you so much Scottius, and I do like that point you brought up about..timing (“this point in history”) I think after many years residing in a virtual world (as you know)..we take for granted the miracle that they really are, and the possibilities they open up for people of all kinds from all places to interact. I was struck with that thought when we we were galloping down the beach (see my reply to Hoyt) and I feel blessed to be alive in a time when this is possible..where amazing friendships are forged and creative partnerships like ours. connect…
This is more than an entry to the contest. This is the real tribute to your great connection. Two very talented persons from different places in the world transcending space, time and distance…sharing great energy, creativity and ideas to make them true. I like very much to see scenes of your different works incorporated to this machinima.. it works perfect! The effects with the horses are so nice and lovely on the table, like the little avatars.
Congratulations Kari and Natascha!!! Hugs
Thank you Yesikita, and thank you for bringing your comment here to my blog where I can give a real reply:) As a machinima talent who I admire very much, your words are very much appreciated, and I just want to say, I was looking forward to your entry this year, and was disappointed to hear RL intervened and didn’t allow you the time to make one. I know you are involved in some great RL projects, but I just want to say, I hope you can always make time to reconnect with your friends and fellow artists in the virtual. Truthfully, comparing SL residents to the billions who live on earth, we are less than a handful..but what a lucky handful indeed. I look forward to all that you make in the future in any world you do it in too. Thank you for your beautiful comment and your generous support..Abrazos fuertes!!
Amazing. The trancelike images and narration, filled with our favorite themes from your other work – the horses, trains, and floating, make this so much like a dream. Thank you for this wonderful experience!
Thank you so much Henri for watching our film and taking the time to leave this comment. It really does mean a lot to us. Your support has always been felt by us both in our film partnership. Thank you again for being there.
I want to share this post with my readers from Virtual Outworlding by Thinkerer Melville (Selby Evans). Nat and I said, “Boaaaah!” (Awesome!) when we read it, because it is so good to get affirmation that that what we hoped to get across in our video, DID indeed get across! The potential of virtual worlds is incredible..and yes, all you have to do is “Start Now” don’t wait. We are saying..”Well, we did this with our connection..but you can do something else…show us..show the world”:) Thank you so much Thinkerer for focusing on our film. As you know much of the machinima was shot on Kitely and every day, we see even more possibilities outside of Second Life for Art and artistic collaborations.
The post can be found here: http://virtualoutworlding.blogspot.com/2014/10/2014-video-art-connection-across-9000.html
Amazing, you nailed it one more time, it reminds me of that sculpture you loved that much, remember? the one of an avatar hugging a person through the screen, we really make it look easy, but is so much behind than just graphics and pixels, is what makes us “real” beyond mere words. Thank you for bringing out our deepests feelings, for expressing in words what we feel about this amazing world.
Gracias amiga querida!! I love how you are reminded of the sculpture that I bought soon after we met in 2008. It was called “Avatars” and the artist was Lash Xevious. It showed so beautifully how we transcend borders each time we meet in the virtual, and maybe most importantly, how we make real connections with people that last and last.. Look at us (smiles) we are going on 7 years of knowing each other! Thank you Tita for leaving this great comment and for feeling very much what we were saying too:) Hugss
Sure sure… the cyber or fiber connection makes it happen… but with these two, it is, to me, the least significant. The connection of mind… the connection of spirit… the connection of imagination… and the connection of wanting to share with all of us, what only they can see… THOSE are the REAL connections to celebrate. Karima and Natascha, you have created yet another joy in my life. Thank you both. I can’t begin to describe how FUN it is to be an instrument of your collective visions (stomps hoof and shakes long-nosed head in joy) ;o). You guys are so totally amazing! This film is a masterpiece. Congratulations to you both! A most honorable mention to Dale and Odracir. They were “the men on the white horses” ;o) Love all of you so much ❤ ;o)
Oh Shesa…thank you for this fabulous comment..You are the most inspiring mirror to look into, besides being a graceful equine:) and many many other fabulous attributes you possess. You are so very much a part of the whole Shesa…you and Gamma are always part of the collective vision.. and btw we have started on a monster of one..and will soon let you know when we need you on set.. Big hugs Shesa..thank you for believing in us, for being part of this spiritual connection that forms when you get together with like souls in synergy:) I even borrowed your synergy line from your YouTube comment last year to stick into this year’s movie…we are all connected…trite I now…but the trite is always true:) Hugsss and big thank yous…Here’s to many many more together
How lovely! It expresses so much not only about your creative relationship, not only about Second Life, but about the entire phenomenon of the Internet age itself. So many secret and mysterious connections between people who only a few years ago could not “do” anything together, only talk on the telephone… and a few years before that, would not have had any contact at all. The long-term results of this great surge of communication and communing are incalculable.
Steve, what a beautiful comment, and a very interesting point you make too. Thank you for taking the time to leave this here and also for watching our film..Yes, I think the film tries to capture a little bit of the potential we all have to collaborate together in so many really worthwhile and wonderful projects.I think we are all just in the pioneering stages of something even beyond what we might be able to imagine now..and it is exciting and heady stuff to think what directions all of this may take us someday..feeling very blessed to be alive in these times …