Well, I specifically used the word “recent times” cause I am normally a hyper active kind and there is always one or other thing that I keep my self busy with. But recently I’ve been much busier, with my elder sister’s engagement coming up next month, also the passion for photography and learning more about it that drives me to indulge a few hours of my day in either reading, or experimenting, and again this month I’ve taken up a few writing projects too. so over all, this month is the busiest time of the year. Although I’ve great vacations to look forward to, One in August at my sister’s Engagement ceremony, and another in October. Hopefully a bike trip to northern [himalaya] regions. Gosh, I am talking about my vacations, and not the topic I started this post for. let me get back to that. So yes, it was one of the busiest day, cause at the end of the day, we, a group of motion photography enthusiastic people at FTFM [ First time film makers] ended up shooting four small documentary films! Which is in itself a record breaking success cause, its really hard to manage that into a mere 12 hours time,specially when atleast 40% of the people are actually meeting for the very first time, as in real time. Of course, we have interacted online before.
So lets see at the day’s happening one by one, shall we?
The People I remember the names of, and are the most important to the whole project, are Mehul Upadhyay [The filmmaker], Meshank Lakhia [the idea-list!!], Purvesh Shingala [The Source[from matrix]!], Manan Gajjar [ actor and a great support in making the idea of the AIDS film possible.] also, Ami and Sumit [two students from DA-IICT/the enthusiastic ones] Harshad and his dance group Summit [actors/the great faces in the documentary films].
They started the project at 7 in morning, with their first Short-Documentary â€œAntyeshthiâ€, at a crematory placed in Bapunagar. I wasn’t able to reach that early, due to unavoidable circumstances, so I do not know much about how that went. Though I plan to watch the making of it, shot by one of the crew members, to understand it better. Anyhow, when they left that venue to reach another at Gujarat Univercity, for the next Documentry called â€œLifelineâ€, I had reached there.
That is the place where the camera was set up and Meshank was letting the actors know of the whole scene and how it should go. Mehul was busy making the ‘making of the documentary’. And Purvesh and the cameraman, were ‘lost in translation’ of technical details.
This is Mr Mehul Upadhyay himself, in a very original mood of his, with his favorites things with him, cameras!:)
Now that’s Meshank, and Harshad, posing after the second documentary finished. The one that was related to Anti-Tobacco Movement. Although we ended up smoking [not literally though] a full packet of cigarettes to make that scene more realistic. Oh well, we shall call them necessary evil and forget that bit!
From there, we moved to Changodar Industrial Estate, here is where the next documentary â€œ Save Daughterâ€ was going to be shot. We reached within 40 minutes and again after reaching that workshop, there were tossing of ideas about location and placement of the next shoot. Constructive ideas were flying about, and it was a good time to be in, though I was also interested in taking my favorite types of photographs, macros of rusty chains and screws and other stuff.[ Do check my Flickr account to see those.]
Here is where, our Director Sir is making the actors know what’s in the script and how it should be done. Of course he is working with nuts/bolts and etc, Surprised already, that whats the connection between that subject for documentary script and this location? well, wait till the short film is out, then you can also appreciate the irony as we as brilliance of the script.
In both the pics, people are in their basic instincts, all lost in doing what they are. Mehul is shooting the documentary, Meshank is shooting him making that documentary, Sumit is capturing the images with his Nikon F10. And me, shooting them, with my Nikon Coolpix p2! [ come on, did you really try to find me in those pics? ]
By 6ish, we were done with that shooting too. And thus we headed back to Manan’s place, None had had anything to eat since morning, and the amazing part was, none actually remembered that yet. But at Manan’s house, we chilled out for a while, eating Daalwada and Drinking Thumbs up before we start shooting for the last documentary of the day. It was when we literally chilled, relaxed as newspaper reporter came in, and interviewed all of us on one-to-one basis. After he went, Ami and Sumit thought it was time for them to leave too.
That left us, 7 people. 6 guys and Me. We started shooting the last documentary. This time with Manan as an actor.
He was a bit inhibited at beginning, but quite enthusiastic, and thus it worked out quite well as he shed off the shyness on Mehul, Purvesh and Meshank’s coaxing. We had ourselves a few laughs here too. Thanks to Meshank and other guys, even though we were tired we had good time.
But it was already late for me, as I’d an hour of journey to be before I reach back at my place. And so I had to leave, in the middle of the forth documentary after playing my part. Those guys probably stayed till 10ish to finish up from there and go to their homes to relax.
Over all, that was one hectic day, cause the whole journey back, I was feeling the tiredness in each of my nerve. Though it was a productive day, and that was the main source of the excitement and happiness I felt.
well, at the end of the day, I ended up deciding to take more part in such activities from now on. Of course, that does mean digging out my old short films that I’d made before, just for the fun of it, and share it with those guys to properly work on it.
I’m typing this days after that happened, cause the schedules in this week were hectic as well, I’d almost no time to sit down and type it out. In these days, A few friends have contacted me about this, and shown interest to join and Work in FTFM.
Its a good thing that word is spreading, and as far as it does, this venture shall keep rolling.
Best of luck to all of us!