Thursday, September 28, 2006

New Zealand and beyond

It turns out I'm going to New Zealand and Australia for some screenings! That's right. Buckle up, Scrapped is going global. David Roberts from KiwiScraps is heading up a tour that will bring Connie and I to Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch in New Zealand and Sydney and Brisbane in Australia. Looks like we'll have some fun places to watch Scrapped, then have some Q&A afterwards with giveaways, wine and cheese and all kinds of fun get together kinds of stuff. Should be a great time to have scrapbookers in a city get together, meet each other and celebrate their passtime out in public instead of hidden on their dining room table.

This whole thing got me thinking about my times in Australia. I went backpacking up and down the east coast from Sydeny to the reef right out of high school. Didn't know a soul and met a lot of wonderful people. Going by myself wasn't the smartest thing for someone that's not a huge people person to do just because of the constant cold start conversations you need to have to find your way around a new culture, new maps, new lodging and new terms of language.

I went back later to do a six month save the world training school called Youth with a Mission and then went back to be on staff for another year or so. I loved the culture, loved the people and loved the ocean. I really look forward to going back and particularly checking out the amazing country of New Zealand. Rugged land, rugged people. I can't wait. It will be interesting to experience the savage rivalry between the Aussies and Kiwi's first hand again. :0)

Thank goodness other people took pictures of me back then and gave me copies. For all the media work I did I didn't take one picture of myself or anything I did personally. How weak is that?!

I also can't wait to see what people 10,000 miles away put in their scrapbooks. All cliche's aside, it really is a great way to meet people and see their lifestyles, thier loved ones and what they value.


PS. Here's some of what I did last time I was in the southern hemisphere.

What I did for my summer vacation... 15 years ago.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Day 2

Connie and I were having a nice day in Central Park and a little dinner at Rockafeler Center as Nate and his wife Emily were busting butt packaging hundreds of orders. They're good people to have on your team.

As cool as it is to see the masters at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, it was equally inspiring to see some of the artists displaying works on the outside. We met a wonderful Chinese man who sold us some great photographic prints of NYC, matted and signed for $10 apiece.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

meet and greet

Had a blast last night at Pepcom. Great food, great people, free cigar.

Out of all the displays there I have to say ( unbiased of course... ) that Fuji had the coolest. Not a huge spread of free stuff from exhibtors but Fuji was giving away some groovy one time use cameras and Scrapped premiere edition DVD's plus showing off some of their cool new products. That's some swag you can actually use.

They hooked me up with a big plasma screen to run promos on which drew people in and got conversations started. I was SHOCKED at how many people had never even heard the term scrapbooking. To be fair this was a techno geek crowd so it was great to talk documentary, gear and share a little album making love. Now that I'm actually doing ( in a very small and personal way ) some scrapbooking its kind of fun to introduce people to it.

One highlight for me was finding two people who were closet scrapbookers and went ga-ga over the whole concept of it "hitting main stream." I really do forget how different middle America is and is perceived by both coasts. Completely different worlds sometimes. So this evening somewhere in New York there's probably going to be a contributor to PC magazine and stock analyst ( along with a about 118 other people from last night ) chuckling and scratching their heads as I try to tell my mom what a powersort box is on camera. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Another highlight was a gentleman hand rolling coagrs for guests. My new found Fuji friend went and scored one for me so I had to take a peek. Very nice. I don't know where these guys got their wrapper leaves but they were incredibly smooth with very little veins.

I also made it to CBGB's for an afternoon libation and I swear Jello Biafra ( Eric Boucher ) walked by on his way to the can. Connie said I was full of crap and it was just some guy off the street except that when we left he and some other guys were loading gear into the club. What a sucker I am for celebrities... and I have no problem with that. So this picture could be of me with famous band members that I couldn't recognize, or I could be full of crap. ;0)

Also on my tourist list was the Tribecca film festival headquaters. Too late to enter this year but I'll probably give it a go in 07. No chance in God's green earth I'll even get screened but it's fun to think Scrapped would be in that building in a pile of some of the best ( and worst ) voices in independant film.

Had lunch in little Italy and couldn't resist grabbing a shot of Connie because we were eating out on the patio under a blue tarp the the difused blue light seemed cool.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

East Coast Time

Not everyone in New York would pay to see Andrew Lloyd Webber...

But they would try to squeeze in a show at CBGC's or The Knitting Factory. Checked CBGB's schedule a few days ago because I'll have Thursday night open. Good News: The Dead Kennedy's are playing! Bad News: Tickets must have been sold out months ago. DOH!

Our lodging got changed from the villiage to an apartment in Chelsea off 6th ave and 27th st. Still very cool. Easily walking distance to everywhere. It is going to be GREAT to get away, not answer email, voicemail, anything for a few days.

If you've wetting your pants about DVD's then don't. Nate will be breaking into my house Wednesday and Thursday after work to post a few hundred orders we have all addressed and almost ready to go.

I myself am eagerly awaiting emails from Sweden, France, Italy, Ireland, New Zealand and Australia from people who purchased Scrapped DVD's and said they would take pictures of the movie in their native land so I can post them on the website and show scrappers from all over the world. How cool is that?!


Monday, September 18, 2006


yes, it's completely my fault.
I approved the proofs of the public release artwork for the new Scrapped DVD's and I know artowrk always looks different on screens than it does printed but I was in a hurry and said, "looks great" and it was shipped off to the printer. When I got it back I saw the photo on the cover was too dark to see what was going on, at least not acceptable for me personally so I had to have more covers printed up. The punchline is that I saw that it was too dark as I was picking up the 5,000 shrink wrapped copies... ( sliding trombone cartoon music here ) jokes on me.

We've started shipping new copies as we get new covers in and should have all 5k fixed by the end of the week. And by fixed I mean shrink wrap torn off, new cover inserted and re-shrink wrapped. The good news is that I was so happy about so many people ordering the DVD right off the bat that I'm personally signing packaging on the first 300 orders. Sorry, we've had many more than 300 orders so far so if you order it now it won't be autographed... but it will still be cool. :0)

On a different note: Connie and I are heading of to NYC early Wed. morning, Fujifilm is bringing us out to New York for some promotional stuff which should be a blast. I'll be doing a meet and greet, giving away some premiere edition DVD's, some posters and signing copies at Pepcom. Here's what the press release says:

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Sept. 8, 2006 - Santa is coming in September again. More than 50 leading companies and hundreds of New York's top press and analysts will get a peek at this season's hottest high-tech products at the annual Holiday Spectacular! media event. Produced by Pepcom Inc., Holiday Spectacular! is an invitation-only media event that takes place Wednesday, Sept. 20th, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m., at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Manhattan.
Media guests will be given live demos of the products showcased. Some of the participating companies include Canon, Fujifilm, JVC, Kodak, Lexmark, Mattel, Nikon, RealNetworks, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Sprint, Thomson, TiVo, Toshiba, and more than three dozen others.
"The Holiday Spectacular! event has grown into one of our most popular showcases," said Chris O'Malley, a partner at Pepcom. "It provides the press with a one-stop look at a broad array of the latest products for the holiday season that they simply can't get anywhere else."
Holiday Spectacular! will welcome a wide range of journalists and analysts from various media outlets. Some of the press who attended recent Pepcom events include ABC, Bloomberg News, CBS, CNN, CNET, Cosmopolitan, Consumer Reports, eWeek, FHM, Forbes, Fortune, TechTV, Gartner Dataquest, IDC, InfoWorld, Maxim, NBC, New York Times, Newsweek, PC Magazine, PC World, Popular Science, Surge, Reuters, Rolling Stone, Stuff, Time, U.S. News, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal.
Pepcom's next two events after Holiday Spectacular! are DigitalFocus in New York on October 11th, and Digital Experience! in Las Vegas on January 7th.

I'll post pictures as soon as I can.

We're going to have a couple extra days in Manhattan and will be staying near the villiage so I want to hear about your "must do" places and activities when you're in New York City! Contestants can enter more than once so please post completely and post often.


Sunday, September 17, 2006


I actually got a call from Dave C. who we interviewed for Scrapped ( "Magic Dave" who scrapbooked his family and magic through the years. ) He wanted to go fishing and, well so did I so we hit the docks with his daughter and had a blast for a few quick hours Saturday morning. I actually caught a 20" Northern on a simple spoon with no leader. I got really lucky because just as I was getting it up pver the railing and onto the dock the lure fell out of it's mouth so I could've easily lost it all the way up while it was fighting. We had difficulties with the camera ( seriously ) so we didn't get a picture of it. Dave said he'd vouch for me. I'm not cool enough to have a boat so it just goes to show you can land large fish from a dock in fresh water. OK, so a 20" Northern Pike isn't really big but after 5 sunnies it felt like a whale. ;0)

It was great to meet him mostly though the video process but them get to know him as a friend. Very good guy. I think that's the best part about this whole documentary thing is that, although I'm juicking things up a little by selectively choosing what get's into the story and filling in the main pieces with scripted dialog, it's basically all true. It's real people saying what they think about real stories and real perspectives in their life. I heard from a woman last week who saw Tracy and Lisa from the movie at a scrap party at Archivers. How cool is that? Some people seemed really shocked to be able to walk up to and get their picture taken with all the "stars" at the premiere. Let me be the first to say every single one of us are about as average as it gets and good or bad, had our normal lives amplified and now visible to ( at the time of this posting ) tens of thousands of people.

Going to New York CIty Wed. for some fun and promotion. More later!


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

productive duplicity

WOW! my flagged email inbox number has dipped below 100 for the first time in months. Things have slowed down enough for me to get back into answering urgent, pressing, life threatening emails and I am exstatic that I am now down to 99 in my inbox! How marvelous is that? ( how pathetic is that?! )

Ahh, sweet victory. If I had two of me imagine what I could get done? Hmm, nope. I would just sit around and argue wth myself all day. Be careful what you wish for in this modern age of cloning. There might be a sheep somewhere with my face on it.


Small world.

Through a crazy series of events I got an email a while ago from a Japanese scrapbooker from Tokyo named Ikuko. ( Hi Ikuko! She reads the blog. )

Although I don't know how to read Japanese I think I'm fishing out phrases like "big hairy fat guy" , " cute wife " , "lack of layout skills but funny pictures " , " should try Japanese motorcycles " , " loud but loveable," etc. That's just my loose translation...

You can check out Ikuko's blog and picture of her copy and try and translate yourself here:

Thanks goodness much of the world has learned English to compensate for mono-lingual bozos like me. :0)


( or in Japanese )

Monday, September 11, 2006

line of sight

Connie was driving us back from our Scrapfest adventure yesterday and since I had the camera out checking blog pics I started dinking around shooting stuff in the car. She has a Mini Cooper and there's not a ton of space to move around inside so pictures were a challenge. It reminded me of trying to pull shots shooting video and interviewing someone. It's also a lot like trying to take group pictures in small rooms like at birthday's, graduations, parties, receptions, etc.

One thing I see in myself and notice in other people's pictures is standing in one spot and taking multiple pictures hoping to get a good one where the subjects eyes are open, everything's in focus, hair isn't too ratty or their tounge isn't hanging out with drool spilling out onto thier shirt. I'm not talking about toddlers either, I was thinking grown adults... you know how parties get.

This made me try a couple different angles to see what I could come up with being severly confined to one position but sucking as much perspective as I could out of it. Here's the different things my eyeballs were letting my brain in on.

Thanks for loaning me the S3 Craig ;0)


Sunday, September 10, 2006

It's Christmas Time in the City

Met some wonderful people today at Scrapfest. I arrived at 12:15, talked to my first person looking for a present from Santa by 12:25 and was out of DVD's by 1:15. Seventy wasn't enough. Thanks to anyone that asked for one after I ran out and was still nice about it.

I had a blast at the Cloud 9 and Fiskars booth and actually scored some very cool free stuff at the Chatterbox display. Loved their paisley rub on borders and swirly, edgy letters. It was also refreshing to see some guys in their booth as well as in others. Here's a picture of Buster, a great guy who walked right up and dropped the Merry Christmas line on me.

He was attending with his wife. He was holding her place in lines, scouting for cool new things for her and generally being a nice guy. He got tipped off I think as many people did by people that heard about the DVD's and went off to other lines down the hall to tell their friends. This is kind of a microcosm of the tactic I've been using to promote Scrapped. It's no surprise I'm an small time indie guy that's flying by the seat of his pants but is giving it everything he's got. I have huge faith in the power of people who like something and tell other people in the modern age of almost instant communication. Whether it's walking down the hall or posting on their blog, people are talking and it's helping get the word out. To be honest though, the word today was just." Hey, some guy's giving away free DVD's..."


Time will tell if Scrapped is worthy of attention and my methods are pie in the sky idealism or a viable business model. Please stay tuned.


Thursday, September 07, 2006

Something for Nothing


Don't tell anyone: I've heard a rumor that I may be at the Mall of America Sunday Sept. 10th from around 12:00 noon - 2:00 PM in the general vicinity of Scrapfest. It's possible that I may have a box ( 70 ) of super special Premiere Edition DVD's ( which you can't order from our webiste anymore.) Hypothetically, if you were one of the first 70 people to see me standing around somewhere, you could probably get a free DVD... maybe even autographed. If this were the case all you'd have to do is walk up to me and say the words "Merry Christmas." Then you'd get your present early.

Of course I can't confirm or deny these reports... and under absolutely no circumstances should you pass this on to anyone else including, but not limited to, your friends who are already in Minneapolis attending the event and can snag you a copy, neighbors, online buddies, scrapbook communities, quilting groups and pediatricians.


Monday, September 04, 2006

and now for something completely different

Ever try to do a layout and just get stuck because now matter how you arrange something you just don't find that "got it!" feeling? I've decided that a big part of my style in scrapbooking is going to be letting the chips fall where they may, going the chaos route, letting fate and nature take it's course because then I'm not solely responsible for something looking like chicken poop. :0)

On that note, I'll leave you with a limerik or haiku depending on your taste for high or low brow humor.


There once was a newbie to scrappin'
who was dying to make something happen.
The mess from the birds cage,
was adhered to his page.
Now the bird can't keep up with the crappin'.


Leaves in autumn fall
to random patterns, as if
stickers on my page.

Anyone else have something to share?


Sunday, September 03, 2006

clarity of thought

I don't know why I cared about what people thought so much.

I kept waking up a couple nights ago, you know... one of those roll over, look at the clock, oh 2am, OK, back to sleep, roll over 3:30, 4:45, 5:50, oh crap, have to get up soon, 7:10 late for work... nope, sleep in Saturday but can't sleep in even thought I'm dead tired and stressed kind of nights. I had tested the online store in preperation for Tuesday's public release but couldn't make 100% sure the conversion rate from a US purchase to Canadian dollars was working yet and a friend of mine mentioned ( as her husband and I were getting ready to go out shooting ) that she sat by someone at the movie premiere who made a comment about there not being any guns in the movie. Out of the hundreds of emails I've received two other people mentioned the same thing, one of them saying when women do that they are labeled a dick tease. ( I didn't take the comment very well, along with the other things she mentioned.)

I lay in bed thinking about the artsy scrapbookers who wanted more art stuff, the digi scrappers who felt like there needed to be more digital stuff, the people who gave me grief about having a gun in the promo and the people giving me grief because there weren't any guns in the movie ( one of the people who, upon first meeting me immediately said, say your promos. Interesting, funny but we have very different opinions about guns was also one of the people saying they were surprised and a little disappointed there weren't guns in the movie ) people that said I needed to skip all the "boring stuff" in the beginning, and by beginning I can only assume they mean the first 70 minutes and get to the meat, the "stuff people really want to see" which was the interviews. Then there's the people that don't really know or care a lot about scrapbooking that seem to like the beginning where a logical / reasoning approach says why the building blocks are important. On and on.

I had gotten an email that day as well from a woman who was at a local scrapbook store and was talking to a friend of hers who saw scrapped at a retreat with a bunch of other women and heard it was good. Her friend told her it was hilarious and that they she should see it. She said she "would love to have a copy or two to leave up there for my guests. It would be a great promotion for you as well!" and then closed the email with "I assume it's a good clean movie?" My knee jerk reaction is, here's a crazy idea... why don't you break the bank, spend $15, buy it and watch it first? That's fine that people are buying a single copy and showing it to a dozen other people. That shows they like it and it's the common way thigns are done. The movie industry is losing their shorts to that kind of thing and it's just part of life. I have no problem with that because I am banking on 1 in 15 or 20 people that see it, liking it and actually buying it. I'm hoping that by releasing something on DVD to the average Joe or Jane Doe instead of trying to get it in theaters and then having people paying $9 apiece to watch it, they will spend $15 to watch it on DVD and get to keep it afterwards.

So I'm lying in bed tossing and turning wondering if I've blown it on the gun thing, on the art or digital thing, on the sell DVD's off the internet thing and trying to do something different with distribution, etc. if I should be sending out free copies to people that want them if they work in the industry because one of my whole things I always print on the stuff I make is that if you don't have the cash to buy one, I'll send you one if you ask. Don't copy because I'm trying to make a million bucks... don't copy it because your copy won't be a s good of quality as the real one that's all. No packaging artwork or crappy video / audio. So I was also wondering if I'm being a hypocrite with the scrapbook retreat place.

This morning I got up and played the bass for the little neighborhood Lutheran Church I go to ( yes, it has a lot of similairities to the whole Garrision Keillor, Lake Wobegon thing ) and was just Wes working on his current project. Balance and being grounded are under rated because they aren't always a juicy story. I remembered that it was only months ago when none of this exhisted. As far as I know nobody had ever thought or talked about doing any scrapbooking docu-thing with a guy from the outside. There was literally nothing in exhistance like it so when it comes right down to it everybody, not just me, has to make their own decisions and take their successes and mistakes ( insert Frank Sinatra or Sid Vicious singing "I did it my way here.) In the grand scheme of things if Scrapped explodes into a million pieces then I go do some commercial work to pay it off and I've learned a ton along the way and if people don't like it for one reason or another then they can make their own damn movie. ;0)

Truth be told I'm already overjoyed about the emails I get from people like "my husband decided to sit down and watch it with me and we both cried" or the large number of people who either feel freed up to try scrapbooking, don't feel stressed about doing it more often or even just feel motivated to spend more time writing down stories from their parents or relatives. That's a cool thing and what I need to focus on: connectiong with viewers, not every single viewer... that's impossible, but balance and perspective of who I am, who others are and the common ground we share.

Friday, September 01, 2006

change the subject...


Well enough of looking at those grotesque pictures. I can't take it any more so I'll post to say that We've got a store up now and have tested everything. Looks like it's working. It's surprising how much harder it is than you'd think to calculate incrimental discounts for larger DVD orders, then add progressively cheaper shipping rates as order size increases, then diferenciate between shipments locally ( sales tax ), domestically and then to Canada. Whew. Plug that in with client side / server side sockets and gobbldy goop and well, I can't do it without some scratch paper. I'm sure other people are a little sharper on this stuff than I am.

I'll apologize right now for all you Canadians that have ordered a pre-release in the last few days. I've been stalling and waiting for the new system to come online so your extra shipping / customs info can be sorted out.