It is a beautiful warm summer morning.
This time last year I was sweating inside of a hot theatre shooting my DVD. After that, I was sitting inside of a editors “studio”, trying to get my DVD edited up to professional standards. Though I sat there with this man for two weeks straight, right up until the very last possible date before the scheduled DVD release party and trip to Europe, it was not to be. The person that I chose lacked the skills he had advertised himself as having.
I spent my entire summer rehearsing, preparing, shooting and editing. And nothing came of it. My heart was broken, and I felt like shit.
Then, my sister passed away. One month after that, a dear friend and belly sister also passed away. It was devastating.
It’s almost one year later. Not quite, but almost. It has taken time for me to recover from the disappointment and grief of the last 12 months. As I have said before, I have been lucky to have the amazing support of many sisters and brothers around me, and I am in deep gratitude for their love and compassion, and also by their continued belief in me.
This past June Jessamyn Kennedy and I put on the Dark Goddess Masque, a fundraiser to help me finish the DVD project. It was a wild success! It rasied the funds, yes, but even more importantly maybe, it created an amazing sense of community and commraderie. And it was SO MUCH sexy FUN!!!! Again, I must thank John Archer, the owner of the mansion in which the party was held. He is a great supporter of the arts indeed!
So where is this project now?
Well, first, I have funds in hand! Thanks to you.
Secondly, I have something that I must confess. I am terrified of this being a failure again. There, I said it. Not a natural business woman, I am an artist first. I am made of emotion and inspiration and yes, I have a very developed work ethic and intense self-discipline in terms of art practice, but no, I’m admittedly not very good at business. I know that there are some artists who do both well, and I envy and applaud those driven souls. I cannot say that I count myself amongst them. With the amount of time and effort and funding and love that has been poured into this project, the pressure to make it good, and make it NOW, is big. I hate to admit that I am worried, but I wouldn’t be human if I didn’t feel this way.
We have also been quite involved in the legal piece of dealing with the videographer who fucked up the project. I have come to a place where I believe that staying connected to him, in any way, is damaging to my soul. As angry as I am---and I have been very angry—I feel that spending my time fighting with a fool will make a fool out of me. Life is too short. The Dark Goddess will handle him in Her own good time.
So…If I’m lucky you’ll call me brave, though ostensibly I could also be called foolish, but I do things even though I’m scared. I stubbornly keep going toward my goals. And so it is with this project.
I have talked with at least 10 Boston-area videographers over the past few months. Most I have let go of outright, as I realized that there would likely be a repeat of the last fiasco should I move forward with them. I am very wary of big statements, like “I’m going to make tha best DVD for you that you can imagine!!!”. Yikes! That was what I heard last time. As you might imagine, I am feeling super uber cautious about who I am choosing to work with.
At one point I seemed so close! There was a videographer who seemed PERFECT. He’s worked with other professional bellydancers before, and he had his plan soberly and meticulously, but also enthusiastically and positively, laid out. He has a great positive energy that I really like. But he’s taking a job in Germany now. So he had to let the project go.
Let me tell you what has happened so you understand why I’m having trouble finding someone good. Most videographers do weddings, live events and/or commercials. They don’t generally do dual-camera shoots of bellydancers involving music. Without prior experience with a professionally done instructional dance video, there is a steep learning curve involved for a videographer. Capturing the detail involved in showing bellydance clearly for the viewer’s benefit is very important in an instructional video, as is having the music synched. So we need someone who can deal with that, plus shoot with professional HD level camera work, and chapter and edit well, and be able to get the overall aesthetic.
I now see why some dance video companies have a cookie-cutter approach to making their videos. It’s much easier to do it that way. But I don’t think that would be right for this project. That’s not the way the Dark Goddess rolls.
I am scheduled to meet with another videographer who seems quite good. She has responded positively to my overall layout of the video, and she seems very competent. She’s worked with other dancers who have liked her work. And I like her overall vibe.
I threw out some cards about this project for guidance from Lady Fortuna. I use the William Blake Tarot, a deck designed specifically for artists:
The central theme of this DVD project is the “3 of Poetry: Creativity”
“I must Create
a System. or
be enslav’d by
I will not
my business is
YES. It’s fine for me to not be perfect at the business end of things. I am to continue to Create---my way, not in the image of anyone else. Three angels stand by with arms up lifted, and a person in light blue (wisdom, communication, throat chakra) gestures towards a book. It’s all right there.
I am crossed by “The Sun”. I use this creative force to liberate myself from old patterns, Trust again in the creative process. Return to the source of life. Reagain childlike enthusiasm, but now with experience.
Passing: “9 of Science, Despair”. Indeed. That part can be over.
Coming into play: “4 of Painting: Means”.
With proper grounding, all resources are available.
Moving past fear, conquer defeating thoughts. Allow for change and flow.
Others involved (That’s YOU!) “6 of Poetry: Cooperation”.
We shall together serve the Infinite and the Eternal as art.
Hopes and Fears: “5 of Poetry: Strife”.
What else can I say? Strife be gone!
Last card, final outcome: “Energy”.
Hooray for that!!!
I have struggled with a lack of energy around this because I was wounded by it. I welcome renewed energy and help from the Cosmos. I honor my natural instincts for artistic and personal integrity, beauty and meaning.
I honor the natural flow that this project has taken. I call upon my friends to honor that flow as well, and respect my need for recovery and regeneration. I honor the encouragement and belief in my work and in me; those who remind me to communicate, and those who support me with trust and patience. I honor commitment and passion combined with rest and self-care. I honor deep communication, love and magic.