JDR Makes a Film – Storm’s Wake

The University of Chicago cancelled classes today and tomorrow due to inclement weather. Naturally, I decided to take a hike around Hyde Park and the campus, as well as wander out to Promontory Point. With me I brought my iPhone, on which I recorded some video using the 8mm application. It’s responsible for the nice film-like effects.

As these are easy and relatively quick to make, It’s my intention to record and produce more of these.

I wrote the text, shot the video, and edited it. In case anybody is interested, the song I used is “Havelock” by Goldmund, off the album “Famous Places”. The album is awesome, for the record, as is Goldmund’s alter ego Helios–also known as Keith Kenniff.

Author: Jason D. Rowley

As I mentioned elsewhere, I wear a lot of hats. Currently, I'm interested in VC data, early stage startups, and journalism. Previously I've been a blogger, designer, researcher, startup founder, (temporary) college dropout, connector, occasional branding designer and amateur chef.

5 thoughts on “JDR Makes a Film – Storm’s Wake”

  1. This was disappointing. A worthless, somber look at a day that brought many neighborhoods together and gave joy to countless curiously eager and vigorous young people. You missed a great portion of the people’s positive spirits during today’s citywide snow day.

    Sorry, I just really didn’t like it.

    1. Dear Disappointed,

      I am sorry for disappointing you. I just want to let you know that, despite the video, I am not a mopey curmudgeon. Or a depressive, or whatever. I was just as happy as anyone to have a day off today, and I’m excited to have tomorrow off as well.

      I would love to know who you are… if I know you. Although it’d be very pretentious of me to call myself an “artist” and what I produce “art”, I emphasize that, sometimes, aesthetic choices are made which don’t necessarily reflect a creator’s “true feelings”. Instead, they are made because it’s what “looked” or “felt” good/right–not what was true.

      -JDR

  2. I disagree with “Disappointed”. I found this little filmlet to be a true snapshot of what many people go through during times of reverie. Contrast this clip to “The Snowball Fight” at the U of Chicago video…full of fun, mischief and and a boatload of snow and laughs.
    But what of the students when this hour-long snowball fight was done? What of their long walk home, yes some with company, but many without. What then to do with the rest of the day but to walk, observe, think, or sit inside and look out the window panes from the dorm room or tiny Hyde Park apartment, then sighing, feeling guilty and getting back to work.
    Melancholia does not always dominate, but for some people it is always, always there. The minute the snowball fight action stops, there it is again. The minute the meal is over, the walk has ended, the phone hung up.
    And for others, what seems like melancholia to the outsider is actually a welcome respite from the constant barrage of information and conversation of the day, a time to be quiet and sad, or quiet and happy. It does not matter which. It is a sacred time to be quiet.
    This film spoke to me.

  3. Perhaps I should have taken more time to choose my anonymous title. As I read your lengthy response, JDR, I realized that.

    The notion of disappointment was felt after the script wrote, “It is said that during disasters, natural or human, people band together. It is primal.” You touched on something interesting here. Something that perhaps you have thought about at length. Something that I had certainly had not. After stating that you disagreed with this reflection on human nature, I was confused. As the film progressed, confusion led to disillusion. I saw a privileged student walking around a University campus filming his backyard and melodramatically denouncing human nature. Never is there more insular an experience as being alone, walking through a campus with a coat and boots? I disagree. You mention in your comment the mothers and children locked in their cars, seniors stuck at home, impoverished families not being able to afford shovels to dig their cars out.

    Where is this in your film? To make such claims as “in times of disaster, the tenuousness of human relations breaks through,” by taking a step outdoors and capturing something that, to me, looks like a serene and a rather picturesque depiction of the luckier have of the city, seems rashly, curmudgeonly, pretentious.

    Finally, the script wrote, “Tomorrow we will find ourselves again. Everything will be as it was.” Now, I find this to have some cohesion with the opening lines I addressed, but after the “tenuous of these bonds” bit, I could no longer follow. This film made very pensive claims, but haphazardly so. I felt I was watching three minutes and thirty-two seconds of a reclusive misanthrope making claims they had no business making from the footage behind their message.

    Those are the feelings I received from watching the short, and I realize they may conflict with your intensions in its making or the responses of other viewers. As for my identity, I would prefer to remain anonymous. You do not know me and I hardly know you. I know your blog, I read from time to time, and a few days ago, I decided to make a comment. My criticisms on your film are in no means criticisms of your character or your ability. As I mentioned before, I do not know you. I saw a film, and in the short free time I had that day, made my opinions public. Today, I do the same. I look forward to reading more from you, seeing more of your films. Disappointed was a harshly unfair moniker for my title, so I’ll leave this film alone with a more appropriate name.

    -Anonymous Critique

Leave a Reply