Harper College

Halls of Cinema

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Halls of Cinema is a writing assignment that I give students of Intro to Film at Harper College in Palatine, IL. I ask them to submit a film that we should preserve for future generations and to keep an eye out for films that I may have overlooked for some reason or another.

These are the results from the Spring semester of 2016:

Shawshank Redemption – The Express – Pursuit of Happyness x 5500 Days of Summer – Bajo La Misma Luna – Little Rascals – The Watchmen – The Breakfast Club – Rocky – Mulholland Drive – Gladiator – Chronicle – Walk the Line – Detachment – The Natural – Bridesmaids – The Notebook – Scarface x 3 – Dante 01 – Hurt Locker – The Dark Knight – The Force Awakens – Office Space x 2 – Django: Unchained x 3 – The Bucket List – The Prestige – Focus – Toy Story – Standford Prison Experiment – American Sniper – The Boy in the Striped Pajamas – Harold and Maude – Evil Dead 2 – Big Hero 6 – A New Hope – Moneyball – Million Dollar Baby – The Office (TV) – The Motivation – Avatar – Almost Famous – Tiny Times – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Pay it Forward – 2001: A Space Odyssey – A Goofy Movie – The Graduate x 2 – A Walk to Remember – Borat – Up – What’s Eating Gilbert Grape – Cloverfield – Step Brothers – Chicken Run – Donnie Darko – It’s a Wonderful Life – The Grand Budapest Hotel

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Not my best #dualworld but I’m happy to leave work while the sun is still up! – Via Instagram @Cinemar10

Entry that I hadn’t seen yet: I haven’t been brave enough to watch The Boy in the Striped Pajamas but this student pushed me to seek it out.

Entry that I want to rewatch: This student had some cool theories about how Donnie Darko plays out that left me wondering whether I’d really seen the film at all.

Biggest Surprise: What is it about this semester that made 5 students write about Pursuit of Happyness? There are also students that chose this film for their Final Presentation.

Bonus Shout Out: Harper College Film Club took Second Place in the Reel Illinois Film Competition for their video about Anne’s Resale Shop in Rolling Meadows.

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Harper College Film Club – Via Instagram @Cinemar10

Dual World: Templo Girasol

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Templo Girasol

Dual World comes from W.E.B. DuBois’ concept of Double Consciousness. The title of the series is a play on the gaming term, dual wielding, for fighting with a weapon in each hand. The double exposure photos were made in-camera by shooting twice before advancing the film.

Templo Girasol, or Sunflower Temple, was shot last winter on Sunflower Lane in Hoffman Estates. The first exposure is my shadow over a temple that we carved out of a snow pile. The second is the reverse view of a sunset between the houses across the street. After developing, I liked the way the sky in the first shot came out as a rich and dark blue, making the orange of the sunset pop, as if it completes the sky in the second frame. I was also happy about the way the rooftops in the second frame broke up the color of the snow in a geometric way.

I get my color film developed at CSW Film Systems; the best kept secret in town.

Harper Film Club Needs Your Help!

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Harper Film Club 2014Harper College Film Club is a group of students in Palatine, IL that gather weekly because of a shared love for film. Among them are potential actors, writers, artists, shooters and editors. With the goal of making a film, they enrolled in the first ever Reel Illinois Film Competition along with students from a handful of community colleges throughout the state. I’m excited about the program because it encourages transferring film students to get some film experience while working toward an Associates Degree.

They’re excited about it because it involves cash prizes! The top 3 teams will earn prizes up to $1000! As part of the judging process, they need to get as many views to their YouTube link. Below is their submission, What Makes You Go Forward? They currently have the second-highest view count, with McHenry County College within striking distance. Harper College has posted their link to their Homepage and sent the link out through social media and a newsletter. Please keep them moving forward by sharing the link with your family and friends. It’s a quick and easy way to support emerging filmmakers!

Dual World: Harper Fountain

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DualWorld022.Harper Fountain

Dual World comes from W.E.B. DuBois’ concept of Double Consciousness. The title of the series is a play on the gaming term, dual wielding, for fighting with a weapon in each hand. The double exposure photos were made in-camera by shooting twice before advancing the film.

I shot Harper Fountain in Building C of Harper College, The Art Department. Today is the 3rd Anniversary of theCGproject and the origins of our story are in this hallway, which we now share as a place of employment. It’s also May Day, so I wanted to give a nod to the Labor Movement. This afternoon, I’ll join thousands of activists in the streets of Chicago to encourage Congress to find the courage to vote on Immigration Reform. Tomorrow, I’ll be back to work at Harper.

I get my color film developed at CSW Film Systems; the best kept secret in town.

Dual World: Red Carpet

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DualWorld019.Red Carpet

Dual World comes from W.E.B. DuBois’ concept of Double Consciousness. The title of the series is a play on the gaming term, dual wielding, for fighting with a weapon in each hand. The double exposure photos were made in-camera by shooting twice before advancing the film.

I shot Red Carpet last autumn and I thought it would be a nice escape from the unrelenting winter we’ve had this year. It also felt right because this is the first time I enjoyed the Academy Awards in a few years. I shot the first exposure while stopping for Osito’s food in Rolling Meadows, IL. The burning bushes were loosing their leaves, making a ring of fire around a parking lot near Algonquin and Golf Roads. I took the shot sideways to give it the feeling of a path. I took the second exposure during golden hour at Harper College in Palatine, IL. It was my first indoor shot in this series. After development, I liked that the leaves feel plush and vibrant. I also liked that the golden leaves on the ground make a decibel meter along the right side of the frame.

I get my color film developed at CSW Film Systems; the best kept secret in town.

One last thing, I was inspired to post a photo today because Adora Wilson-Eye found this awesome series of photos by Vivian Maier. It’s amazing work, you should check it out!