Thursday, 31 July 2008

Brain Dead Blog

I was sleepily driving towards my lunch break when suddenly I saw a slick on the road. At first I thought it was a car, but as the trail never seemed to end, I realised it was a large vehicle. By the way the slick so dutifully avoided the bus lanes, I came to one conclusion, it could only have been a lorry. This slick continued for five miles and by the time it turned off towards Croydon, it was still going on the ground. The regular drip from the lorry, causing mayhem to cyclists and motrorcyclists of the night.

Oh, and yes, I have been particularly bad at checking e-mails this week. Ouch, another full inbox! Man! I need to switch off. Can't everyone just Twitter me instead. It is so much more concise!

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

We are: Caution Wet Paint!

Finally, I have mastered whizzing graphics and I feel so much more FUNKY for it.

After a day winging it through the vast countryside of England, editing away on my laptop feeling rather fine, here are some of the results of my visual escapades!

We are: Caution Wet Paint - WATCH HERE

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

On the Set

I hope you all enjoyed our live view of the set today on Caution Wet Paint and got to learn a little about how much I actually swear in real life and how badly I treat my actors and colleagues.

But it was good to get filming again, and serious filming, beyond the shorts and trailers and to tackle something really serious! But of course, with a uniquely CWP flair.



And sometimes you forget how good the people around you are. Today, it seemed that everything worked. The performances from Kuldip and Ari were superb and not just because they are reading this, but it really felt good today. Often, the constraints of budget film making can leave you harassed and with a short temper. The actors are always at the receiving end (note - never insult the DOP). But I have been very fortunate to work with an excellent team on Caution. Tuesday I see Nick and again, I am looking forward to this. We may not be earning anything from our efforts, but the beauty behind these performances are something to behold. Cross our fingers guys and girls, let us hope that our efforts begin to bear fruit.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Procrastination Rules!

This has been on my to-do list for a few months, but I figured that I might as well get a concept version of this shoot-em-up out there, as I'm fully booked until late 2009...

There is no "ending" yet, but the final version will feature multiple levels, big explosions, choice of weapons, mobile phone compatibility etc etc.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Summer Fun!

Lots of Events Happening this Summer!



Okay, first up is Vlog in the Park. Turn Up, enjoy the food and fun! From 2pm onwards on Friday 8th August in Hyde Park!

Second is Taste Asia at Valentine's Park (nearest Tube Gants Hill, Central Line) on Aug 9th and 10th from 11am-6pm! Lots of food and fun, and I will be MCing live from Taste Asia on Sunday 10th from 4-6pm, also broadcast on NuSound Radio 92FM

Friday, 25 July 2008

Live Webcast from the film set

Just adding the the last post is a vlog and uyes, we will be live on BlogTV (and maybe Stickam if we can muster it).



Vlog

See you Monday.

Oh, of course, it won't be for the full day, but only for the first hour or so. Laptop battery, plus the fact that I will not be able to swear and shout on set if the webcam is still on (El D).

It will entertain you, while you are at work.

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Random thoughts from the Night

I drive through these empty roads, changed as they are from the rush of the weekend. The city is truly asleep right now. A couple of cars racing off at the lights, but nothing and no one else. I wonder what they are doing on these streets at this time of the night, with nothing open and nowhere to important to go. WHo would choose to be awake now? Eight million people live here, but only a handful are awake. Social life will have to wait until Friday, only a few more days until chaos will transform these streets. But tonight it is different. I am alone, driving into town, I could whizz by at 50mph or crawl at a snail's pace and no one would know any different except the eye in the sky, Big Brother et al. It is weird to think of this city as quiet, but there are moments when this is true. When nothing happens and when everyone is resting, except for me...

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Love Haiku

I dream of a time,
And I wonder if she's mine,
Where all people shine...

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Twitter

I have wondered about Twitter for a while, but I have joined this latest venture into the world of social networking a month ago in the guise of Caution Wet Paint.

So far, so entertaining, but is this just a fad, a waste of bandwidth or is there something inherently human in wanting to know the minutest lies/details of daily life?

Monday, 21 July 2008

Monday Morning...living the dream?

As part of the Vlog365 project, my latest addition to the chanel and asking the one important question. Do we dare to live the dream or do we face the reality also known as 'life'.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Sorry El Maestro, but I love this so much...

Here at Caution, Wet Paint, we also aim to educate and inform you; the general (non-paying) public.

First up, a cockney sing-along about MILK. You have been warned.


(Of course its a tribute to Weebl and Bob).

- El Maestro

Saturday, 19 July 2008

South London is Shit

It isn't often that I like to jump on the Right Wing bandwagon. Well, maybe I do. But that's besides the point:

Croydon

There's not really much to comment about the place. It's just a shithole.

Friday, 18 July 2008

Experimentation

At the moment I am feeling a little bit experimental. You see, the recent computer upgrade included a few new tools on the editing side that I have not really tried out. So before I get into the serious business of getting ready for film festivals, I want to do a little bit of experimentation Really quite childish stuff, but I want to muck about with a new library of sound effects, new ways of animating my credits as well as getting a chance to use Ari's new logo for Babarouge (I am about two months late on this).

I do not know why, but I just want to get this out of my system. A mixture of styles, the ultimate use of my stock footage and a blend of opera (which I cannot sing) and rave (which I cannot dance to). One of the nice things about CWP is that I can happily indulge in a lot of experimentation from a film making point of view. I take risks, I do things that a conventional series would be afraid to do. As The Paint is so random I have been lucky enough to do this. It also allows me to make mistakes which is so important when you do not have a conventional background in film making. Essentially, it is all a part of the learning curve.

Also, it's a great amount of fun! The film world is a great place to be!

Thursday, 17 July 2008

The Future of Humanity Part 3 - China and India

Today, is quite a serious day for blogging. So much so, that even the Caution Wet Paint blog has a serious undertone to it. Am I growing up? Surely not?

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Our Future from a Londoner's Point of View: The Rise of India and China

This article is part three in the series so far looking at the future of humanity from a Londoner's point of view.

For me, writing about China and India was one of the tougher articles. The fact of the matter is that more than climate change or oil prices, there are no easy solutions to adapt to the rise of these two new Superpowers. It will either be a case of engagement or London will cease to exist in its present form. The growth of India and China will revolutionise the way we lead our lives tomorrow.



The article.

The video.

Next week, my final part in the series, Web 2.0...

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Welcome to the Latin Quarter 3...The Elephant and Castle



I will make no bones about it, I love Latin America. What started as a tour on school time at the beginning of the Century has turned into a fascination for the Catholic inside of me. In fact, it is the one reason to stay Catholic. Now, out of all the parts of the world (excluding Greenland), Latin America has never been that well represented in London, until very recently. In other words, we have missed out on a most beautiful part of the world. Thankfully that has now changed:



London's Latinas and Latinos are not that visible. Until the murder of Jean Charles de Menezes, most people in Britain did not realise there was such a thing as Latin Americans in the UK. Most of our (skewered) view of this rich and vast land comes from the USA. Great. Their portrayal of Latina America as a flamboyant society obsessed with large bottoms is unfortunately not that accuarate. In the UK, the Lain Americans are very quiet, keeping their heads low and getting on with their daily business.



In a broad arc from Vauxhall to Camberwell, this is London's Latin Quarter, centered on that neighbourhood known as the Elephant and Castle. Not the Buena Vista version of big brass bands and rum but the London version of cleaners and minimum wage workers. A black economy supported by student visas and heritage passports scraping a living economically richer than their own countries but vastly inferior in terms of culture and environment. After all, who would choose to make the Elephant and Castle their own home, an area that has been filled with the neglect and incompetence of every Post-War government.



If you do not believe me, then get on a Nightbus at 4am at the Elephant. From all corners of the roundabout workers wait for people like me to roll in. Summer or winter, it is always cold at this time of the day, an unnatural time to wake up. You want to know where the flamboyance and life has gone? Quite simply it has been sucked out of you this early in the morning. Still beautiful, still stunning and still proud, in fifteen years time, the sounds of salsa and rumba will be as common in South London as Bhangra is along Southall Broadway...

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Welcome to the Latin Quarter...Elephant and Castle 2

It is always very risky to type when you have had no sleep, simply because more spelling mistakes take place. Anyhow, I love London's Latin Quarter so much, that I must plug on with my mini-series on the Elephant and Castle and the delights of the surrounding area.

This is the view of the Elephant and Castle that most people out of London see in their mind's eye:



Conversely, most people in London associate this with the Elephant and Castle:



The Metropolitan Tabernacle which dominates this intersection, far more effectively than the pissy pink shopping centre opposite it:



Okay, you can compare the Elephant and Castle to that other great gyratory of South Lonon, Wandsworth. And what do I think. The Elephant is cleaerly superior. Why? Well, it has personality, and hey, that counts for a lot. Do not believe me? Then join me tomorrow fr my final pit-stop of the Elephant and Castle...

Monday, 14 July 2008

Welcome to the Latin Quarter...The Elephant and Castle (1)

(For a more politically correct way of blogging, please click here. Otherwise, get ready for the 'funk').

Following on from last week's tour of Wandsworth (ugh), I decided to go one better and visit that great junction of humanity known as the Elephant and Castle.



Now, as a regular driver of many of South London's Night Buses, I pass by the Elephant on a regular basis. And of course, what attracts me to this junction of the A3 and the A201? Well, every time that I drive past here, I see a stall, open at all hours of the day, known for its wonderful promise of exotic content and beauty:



Well, if there was any other way to attract red-blooded men from across London it was the promise promise of sexy SeƱoritas serving up large amounts of meat on a skewer, garnished with chili and papaya. Hey, a man has to dream while driving the Night Bus through South London...



Of course, on arriving at this wonderful temple to hope, I was greeted by a bloke who had plenty of chicken and rice, but nothing uniquely Latin. Still, his stuff was wholesome, and cheap - you can eat for under a fiver, and you will eat well! And the company is good, if nothing else.

Belly full and Ginger Beer swigging in my hand, it was time to explore this famed part of SE1, and to see what the fuss was all about....



(to be continued...)

Sunday, 13 July 2008

'The GIft'

Our Gift to you...



Kay man, it's too early in the morning for this!

Saturday, 12 July 2008

Babarouge Relaunched

I have been as busy as a beaver in recent weeks, all for the 'relaunch' of babarouge.com. Check it out and please, if there are any bugs, tell me!!!

El D.

It's amazing to see the difference between the old and the new

Friday, 11 July 2008

Chilean People are Crazy!

Why would anyone arrest this beautiful woman?

Can you imagine this on the District Line? You might see some people actually begin to smile...

Why am I here?

A severe attack of philosophy came over me while walking through yesterday's monsoon. Why am I here on this Earth? I question a hell of a lot of things, and with my brain capacity at an all time low, I usually come across '???'

But the one question I can never shake is why I am here. If it is just to eat, sleep, shit and procreate then why wasn't I born a monkey? How come I have this ability to think and be aware of my own surroundings, aware that I have one life, it is finite and one day it will all end. Is this someone's (or something's) idea of a cruel joke or is there more to life than mortgage repayments and credit card debt. And when did interesting people, who believed in more become boring fuckers who believe in the next generation to change things. Why can't we be the changers?

Back to my question, why am I here? On this Earth, why was I born here in London instead of Mahe, Jaffna or a plethora of places. And how can I use that to my advantage? WHy am I here, and s there more to life than the basics? I certainly hope so, but the pursuit of money, for money's sake is just so pointless. The pursuit of adventure in search of riches is appealing, but money for money, just cash it sucks. After all, we earn thousands of pounds a year, in fact our wages could feed small countries in the developing world. Yet, we are still no happier. Walk through any London street and count the number of smiling faces during the day. Yep, only the cute Brazilian cleaners chatting on the bus seem to smile. Everyone else is miserable. And yet, guys, we have cars, big tv's, good food, football teams that have superb players, how come we are not happier?

And so, why am I here? Alive, today, in twenty first century, where travel is easy (especially with an EU Passport) and technology is advanced and user friendly (hell, even my mother has begun to use e-mail). Why am I here, when basic freedoms still exist for all men and women and where I am able to speak out freely rather than Saudi for instance. Where intelligence and free thought is respected rather than supressed and trampled underfoot?

Why am I here? What is my purpose in this life? How do I achieve this? Where must I travel to accomplish this? Who will guide me?

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Alternatively, there's always that new ipod...

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Ambitions - Garden Flat in Putney!

Yet again was aboard the London Underground this week and saw a new advert that actually caught my eye, about Gumtree. Now, this is not a plug for that company, but if you have the inclination, the site has its uses.

Anyhow, they have started an advert all over the tube. One of the ads talks about a couple who have a newborn baby. Thanks to Gumtree they go from their cramped Studio Flat to a Garden Flat in Putney. Oh happy renting!

The Second advert is about 'Polly', a lady fed up with her two hour round commute. So she swaps her life for a ten minute stroll along the Thames in Richmond.

These adverts are designed to appeal to people like me. Maybe starting a family, or shacked up with a partner. Fed up of commuting. Looking for something 'new' to revitalise ourselves. And Gumtree has the answer!

Look, it is not Gumtree's fault, they are just tapping into the market. We have to look at ourselves. For instance, the fact that Richmond or Putney have been chosen are designed to appeal to our sense of, 'wow cool, but not too noisy!' Look at how we can change our lives! Move to a Garden Flat! This is not even bought, it is rented. Or, get a job that does not involve using public transport. How sedate we have become...

There was a time when my generation actually dreamt of changing the world. We did have dreams of becoming a little bit more than the R&B bitch. We believed that we could stop climate change (we grew up environmentally aware), we believed that we would not be swallowed by money (we had a recession to thank for that) and we believed in a thing known as world peace (and just how many of my generation actually try to justify Iraq). No, we have happily bent over and allowed the world to 'insert here' in order for us to, maybe, one day, have the same chance to do so to our children (should we be able to have any given our cramped living conditions).

Sigh. Nobody understands me. Maybe the world is right and I am the last crazy man alive who believes in something a little more. I should just chill and get a 'proper job' and a real life.

But you know what, the Garden Flat in Putney just does not appeal to me...

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Shock Jock

Well, we will find out, but join me at 11am today only on NuSound Radio 92FM at 11am for my first 'Talk Show' where I will be verbally sparring with Mr. T. over the issues of the Credit Crunch, Viacom vs. Google and of course, Teenage Stabbings in London.

Just deciding which role to play. The Good Liberal or the foul mouthed Right Winger...

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

I fucking hate Viacom!

Instead of saying a normal 'Hi' to the world, this Viacom business has got me really pissed off. So here is a VLOG instead.



Grrrrrr! Fuck Indiana Jones!

Monday, 7 July 2008

London's Future 2

Part 2 of my series into our future, but from a local perspective on global events. Following on from last week's article on rising sea levels, this week I took a look at Peak Oil and the changes we will have to make as a city in order to survive.

There have been some interesting feedback so far on the article. I agree with all of them, but whether or not we have the common sense to implement them soon is of another matter. But in the short term, before Hydrogen Cars and Wind Power actually becomes a reality, it is best to stick to your bicycle...

And of course, here is a very short documentary to accompany the video.

Sunday, 6 July 2008

The internet is not free...

...so says the Tehran Times. I know, the irony of a comment like this coming from Iran, but they have a point. The ruling of a US court allowing Google to give up 'non-sensitive' information such as your own IP address to Viacom.

But before I go any further, let me replace the word 'Viacom' with 'MTV' or 'South Park'. Yeah, that's better, how does it feel now? Anytime you have watched a clipping of MTV or Kenny getting killled. Or even a piece of Star Trek, there you go, MTV will probably try to sue you.

I could go into the whole corporate hogwash and start blubbering about how this is the end for democracy. No, instead I shall keep it simple.

Paramount Pictures have made nothing good in the last few years, nothing memorable in terms of films. MTV is just cribbing itself to death and to be honest, the actions of this company sounds like an organisation in trouble. Instead of trying to hold desperately onto the past, just accept the future, embrace it and adapt to it.

It is actions like this that could make Viacom another MGM.

Saturday, 5 July 2008

What recession?



You have to love this picture. Ahh, reading the Economist after night duty, what a mind!

Friday, 4 July 2008

Wandsworth 3 AND Crossings of the River Thames 15: Wandsworth Bridge



My brief wanderings around Wandsworth are coming to an end, and so here we are by the River Thames at Wandsworth. And to be honest, Wandsworth is a dump. Yes, I ay have tried to sell it as something more than it is, but this is one lousy suburb of London and this was the one bridge I was not looking forward to. Unfortunately, my recent visit to Wandsworth proved my point. Nothing here but traffic and more. Wandsworth Bridge is no different. It s purely functional and has no other redeeming features to it or the riverside surrounding it. There is only one other bridge that I have such disdain for, Vauxhall, but that is another crossing, four months away. Now my wrath is concentrated at Wandsworth Bridge.



But no matter how much I dislike a part of London, I must visit it anyway and blog about it. Such is the challenge of London's River Crossings. But I really did not want to come here. My visits to Wandsworth are not for pleasure, just necessity. Oh my, and look, this really is not an impressive brdige. Built of steel and rusting away under its blue paint, Wikipedia claims this to be the busiest crossing over the Thames in London. Hah!




And I will tell you exacty why I do not like Wandsworth. Firstly, its nasty one-way system that has zapped the heart of the town centre. Secondly, the resultant lack of soul within this town. Three, the almost deserted streets late at night, except for the wine bars by the railway station. Fourth, its awkwardness to get there, except by car, fifth, the fact that it is an ugly place, and lastly (lined to the first one) it is not a destination, merely a place to pass-by.

Wandsworth Bridge itself was completed in 1940 and so makes it one of the newest bridges over the Thames (only Waterloo, London Bridge and the Millenium Bridge are newer). And it has stood the test of time very well. Although ugly, it is functional and to be honest, it is a harmless structure. Bus lanes and (narrow) cycle lanes on the pavement provide the populace with an environmentally friendly way to cross it and there is always Fulham to the north of the river with its fine sweep of the river. However, as we near the halfway point of my journey through London's river crossings, I will thankfully leave Wandsworth behind. Until the next time I am stuck in traffic.



Getting there and away:

Bus Routes 28, 44, 295, 424, C3, N28 and N44. The 391 also stops nearby. Wandsworth Town is the nearest railway station.

(Happily the next bridge for me to visit will be Battersea!)

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Wandsworth 2: The pretty bits

Okay, this may come as a shock to many readers, but Wandsworth does have its pretty side. No, not by the Thames, but by thw Wandle.



The Rver Wandle is an industral river. Due to its history of flash floods, there has been very little residential development along its banks. Instead, it is a ribbon of industry and out-of-town shopping that cuts its way through the South of the capital like a throbbing vein. It is also surprisingly difficult to cross at times, causing many bottlenecks along the way.



But at Wandsworth, the Wandle itself becomes a beautiful oasis of calm in the town centre. A surprise to stumble upon, especially if you know this town as well as I do. But one of London's greatest charms is hunting out its unknown parks and rivers and seeing how they are carefully maintained as playgrounds of the masses.



Man, I should have been employed by their council...

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Wandsworth 1: Gateway to South London

For some strange reason, I have spent a long time in Wandsworth over the past week. For the uninitiated, Wandsworth is a beautiful suburb set amongst the riverside of London at the confluence of the elegant Wandle and the mighty Thames.

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For us Londoners, it is a shithole.

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The main reason is that many people in London do not actually stop in Wandsworht, but merely drive through it. The Wandsworth one way system is a notorious bottle neck. Two major roads, the A3 and the South Circular meet at this town and are squeezed down into one and a half-lanes before freeing up themselves to their ultimate destinations.

But there are some pretty sides to Wandsworth.

Really, there are.

And it is one very interesting suburb. Locked in amongst the one way system, plus a river crossing, Garret Lane and a few other roads leading to various parts of South London, there are pocket of actually industry that occur here, still, in London. You also have the usual luxury apartments and of course, normal London where everyone else lives.

But, it is an interesting place to spend a few days...

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

500 posts and counting

Actually, this is post number 502, amazing, given my very short attention span, that I have actualy managed to keep this blog going for so long. Or as some of my co-conspirators may comment, it just proves how little I have to say.

(If you want proof of that, then try Twitter).

Anyway, free as a bird, today and El Director was soaring through the streets of South London, gently curving away on a not-so-new bicycle from ye olde shoppe!

Also saw the hit Tamil flick Dasavatharam at the pictures - three hours of fun, cannot be beaten by anyone, especially with Kamal Hassan in ten roles. I loved every minute of it, a typical Tamil film, but just WOW.

Yeah, what a way to spend a day off...