Tag Archives: travel

An evening with James… and a famous feline

25 Jun

Hey Mediadreamerz

It certainly has been a long time since I last posted. I admit I have spent the last few weeks getting ready and trained for the production department I am moving into; live broadcasting television. Role being a Production Gallery Assistant.

But I have managed to find time to escape my media domain and go to an event I have been looking forward to for weeks. I travelled to London to hear a chat from James Bowen and see A Street Cat Named Bob. Whilst on the train I got chatting to a couple going to a Robbie Williams concert and other topics; I always think the best conversations are with strangers, you lern a lot. I had a feeling that it was going to be a popular event and it was; people were queueing at 5.45pm and the event wasn’t starting till 7 pm. It was a Hammersmith town hall and I only wish that the venue had air condition as it was really hot inside.

          

 

Soon the room was a buzz when James and Bob arrived and everyone stood up and applauded. Before the Q&A session started there was performances from a group called Burbank who were really good, and they even performed afterwards. It amazed me that people had travelled from Switzerland, Germany, Poland Greece and other parts of Europe had come across to the UK to see Bob and listen to James.

          

 

For those who do not know about James and Bob, focuses on James who was a homeless individual who was on a methadone program. After struggling for so long James was able to get a place to stay and one day Bob was sitting in the corridor of where James was staying. After 3 days, Bob was still there and James decided to take Bob to a charity vet and after that decided to look after Bob, who gave him a focus point to get clean and get back on his feet. James was also busking at this time and with Bob going out with James, it attracted attention from the masses. Soon James was approached by a publishing company who wanted to turn his story into a book, or rather a series of books. And then into a film as I guess some of you have seen.

              

 

James and Bob sat down and the person hosting asked James about the film, his books/ story, questions about Bob’s likes/ dislikes and facts about him and getting involved with the charity Baron Court. During this time also Bob was wearing his scarf, falling asleep and being fussed and fed treats at various times. One thing that gets me is how he stays on James’ shoulders when he jumps on him?

Barons Court Project is a homeless charity that focuses on helping those find somewhere to live, provides them with meals, social events, a place to get a haircut, hot shower, IT facilities to print off their CVs and learn new skills, postal mail address and much more. The charity’s main organizer also mentioned how others can get involved and how James and other celebrities have also given up their time to assist others.

There were questions from those that had submitted ones to the event organizers, and some of us got to ask questions afterwards, followed by getting loads of photos of Bob and James. The only annoying part at the end was queueing to get books and merchandise signed, oh don’t get me wrong the queueing wasn’t the annoying part, it was people buying books and items at the top of the hall and cutting in line! The rule is this- No butts, No cuts, No coconuts! And again best conversations are with strangers, something many of us did when waiting and waiting.

4o minutes later and I got a book signed, but not to me; I got it signed to my mum and I am gonna break a cardinal sin here and say the book is going to be one of my mum’s Christmas presents. I wanted to high-5 Bob as that is signature greeting, but because he was getting grumpy and tired he went to rest, so I gave James a high-5 instead. Was a relief to get outside as it was na oven in the hall, and as I walked back to Hamersmith underground I got an enormous shock; Bill Bailey was walking towards me with his son, whistling. Wow what a cool moment, first James and Bob, now Bill Bailey. I’ve heard stories of people meeting and seeing well known people on buses and on the underground but for me that was totally awesome.

I have recently been asked about helping out on some films in Spetember, which I am hoping fingers crossed I can even if it is for a few days I still love my freelance work, so that will soon be upon me.

Nunquam Deditioneum

Media; Moments & Making things happen

30 Mar

Hey Mediadreamerz

OMG where does the time go these days? Can’t believe it was over a month ago that I posted anything. But it’s been a fun few weeks so now I have time to sit and type away. My other reasons for this are from baking for the last so many weeks; Red Nose Day, socially and I’m still baking and have started making Easter eggs for work and friends. As I mention RND regarding work it was fun and interesting going into a production company on that Friday wearing red cosplay wig and getting a combination of ‘I didn’t recognise you’, ‘Red hair suits you’ and ‘You should wear this and other wigs to work more often’- That last comment IS tempting I admit.

For those who are curious as to what the wig looked like, here is a shot; please feel free to comment on what you think on that.

I was glad last month to be having a break in Paris for a few days and seeing a lot of media out there was very interesting to observe and speaking French too was great especially using certain phrases; Can I have a lawyer who speaks English, Where is the British embassy, I’m drunk, I’ve lost my wife (not that I need to really use that one but it’s funny to know. Amongst those phrases, I did learn others.

Once back I got straight into media work most of which is related to my job itself, I’ve spent part of my holiday days off work WORK work-shadowing in the Production Gallery and from the past 5-6 days doing this I am starting to get the hand of everything that is going on.
There is also the upcoming 48-hour film challenge that I am hoping to be getting involved in and also hopefully a film called the Mask of thorn next month which is gonna be great working with people I know and haven’t worked with yet.

I am happy to share that next month I am going to the premiere of 2 films I worked on one in London and the other in Romford which I am looking forward to and already have my outfits for those nights. The film in Romford is called Borstal, and it is on sale now, and the other is Cain Hill both of which were awesome experiences. So I will be looking forward to blogging about those nights.

Most current experience to share is being at Elstree Studios at a Creative England for the launch a something ProConnect event. As you have heard and seen that Elstree is known for TV shows like Pointless, Big Brother, The Voice just to name some nd with films like Paddington Bear, The King’s Speech, The Danish Girl and much more.

ProConnect is a program that supports creative businesses, freelance individuals, entrepreneurs. Offering workshops that cover topics like Government tax breaks and incentives, Marketing, Funding, etc. ProConnect is covering two regions; Manchester and Hertfordshire, so people in the North and the South are covered. It was interesting to hear what they offer media companies and freelance individuals and having received an email on what workshops that are happening from Summer to Autumn, so that’s something else to look forward to.

Once Easter is over and I have distributed my continental Easter treats and Easter Eggs I will be back on track to work on films and other activities for the Summer.

Nunquam Deditioneum

Banged-up in ‘Borstal’

8 Nov

Hey Mediadreamzers

Its been awhile since I sat in front of my laptop and composed a post, last being the James Bond event, and there is another on the horizon. In between then and now I have been work-shadowing in the various departments at work, again in the studio gallery specifically with the Production Assistant and with the Assistant Producer focusing on the paperwork side of things.

You may think from the title of the post ‘oh Lord, what has she done’, and quite possibly your mind might wonder onto the opening titles and dialogue of ‘Porridge’ quoting Norman Stanley Fletcher being grilled by the Judge. Unfortunately not, I am not doing Porridge, but was involved in a film that wasn’t as comical as the sitcom; the opportunity I was involved was a film called ‘Borstal’.  You can guess from the title what the film is about. What surprised about getting involved as production crew was a week ago I received a phone call from the Director, Steven, asking if I was free on any days the last week of October/ first week of November. I was touched by being contacted and asked to help out if I was free.

There was also a request for me to bring and bake cakes, as on my days off from production work, and keeping active I bake, and I bake a lot.

Although filming started a few weeks ago I have been helping out for a few days during Halloween half-term week. It was a bit of a journey getting to location, and luckily I found the site where filming was happening. When I arrived I met some of the actors and crew and then met Ruth the Line Producer and Steven, the Director. First day was getting used to the site we were filming on and meeting the rest of the team, and it was great fun. Getting areas set up for filming, relaying messages, thinking ahead, all that jazz.
As the first day went by, a phrase I had heard before was said again ‘Where was this girl when we first started filming?’. I always smile when this, as I find it hard to get that others think I do a good job on sets. I couldn’t believe how quick the first day for me on set had gone and even with the clocks going back an hour. Would have liked to have gone back on Halloween and on the 1st Nov. but couldn’t make it, so my second day back was on 2nd Nov. and it was just as good as the first.

Although it was great to be heading back to location, and seeing the cast and crew again, despite it being cold outside when we were filming, at least the sun was shining. I also got to meet Chris the Production Runner on ‘Borstal’, and I think we made a great team. When I arrived and the rest of the crew saw me, I got ‘Did you bring anymore cakes’, and the answe to that was afraid not.

The one thing I still hate about productions is that time goes by really fast even before you have a chance to take it all in. Working with everyone on ‘Borstal’ was a blast and I always hope and wonder if I have done a good job as a Production Assistant. Everyone from the Still Photographer to the Line Producer, from the enthusiastic actors to the stunt Coordinator to the Director who was awesome from the start made me feel like part of the team. It was a long drive back to Buckinghamshire, but it was worth it getting to work with so many great people in Media, and I really hope I get to work on future productions with everyone again as it was so much fun.

Not sure when my next opportunity will be media work wise but as mentioned above it’s gonna be a bond weekend and god I am so on board with it and will be like a 12 days till Xmas event from the team behind James Bond. That and doing lots of practice baking for Xmas as I am gonna be making Xmas Continental treats and even Black Russian Cupcakes.

 

Nunquam Deditioneum

Event is Bond, Bondstars

25 Sep

Hey Mediadreamzers

 

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As promised this post is one that is a must to share, I have been waiting for months for this day and it finally arrived. It was an early rise to get to Pinewood Studios for a Bondstars event ‘Designs on Bond’ honoring Peter Lamont, Art Director for the Bond films from Goldfinger to Spectre. Apart from a nightmare getting to Pinewood due to road closures I made it and once there it was like film heaven, going in and getting a goodie bag of Peter Lamont’s book (which I got autographed) and other items it was a case of touring the Heatherden Hall seeing the Special guests many of whom I met during the day. The special guests were at tables with autographed photos and other items, next to tables of dealers selling merchandise, one thing I came away with was a Moneypenny signed t-shirt. Well if people are gonna christen you with that name you might as well have the t-shirt to go with it. It was great to see and meet many of my Bond Facebook friends in person and we had a great chat and catch up before the event officially kicked off. We were introduced to the work of Peter Lamont, his work and him answering questions from the Bondstars.com organizers. We saw a tribute program to his work on the Bond films and everyone sharing their memories of Peter Lamont, it was interesting to learn that Peter’s brother and also his were also part of the Bond franchise. After the documentary many of Peter’s colleagues got on the stage and shared their memories of Peter and the Bond films they had worked on, really interesting to hear.

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When there is a break before the next surprise, I decided to wonder round and get some autographs from many of the well-know crew from Bond, one of whom was Terry Madden (and I also saw Terry Bamber-The man and legend), as well as Terry Ackland-snow, Chris Corbould, John Richardson, John Grover and many other people. I got to sit with many Bond Facebook friends, and got to meet the guys behind James Bond Radio for a chat and lunch which was really enjoyable. After this it was a Q&A session with Peter Lamont and seeing tributes on the big screen from Sir Roger Moore, James Cameron and other well know stars looking over the film sets he has created and the Oscar he won working on Titanic, as well as showing other iconic films he has been part of. Some of the Bond writers came to pay tribute to Peter as a surprise too which was great. There were some apologises said, one of which came from Barbara B and Michael W, and other individuals who could not make it. After the Q&A we all got a break and got to wonder round the memorabilia room to see what else was there and other guests had arrived too. I got to have my picture with some of the Bond Girl stars, I particularly had a really enjoyable conversation with Madeline Smith and Caroline Munroe both of them were very kind in saying that I was very pretty and yes they were being very kind. There was a garden tour of Pinewood but as I have had a tour of Pinewood before I stayed to continue chatting to Madeline and Caroline as well as talking to the other Bond stars/ girls as they had taken the day to come to Pinewood I thought it would be rude to not go and say hi. It was an incredible day involving tea and scones that everyone enjoyed, before going to listen to Q The Music tribute to Peter and the Bond films he has worked on. I continued to chat to Caroline and Madeline and other stars. I was flattered beyond measure by Caroline saying to other Bond special guests about me and how pretty I am and said that I should consider being in a Bond film. One can only dream.

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Q the Music was brilliant like it was the first time I heard it and seeing with others was incredible. I was said when the day came to an end, and we all needed to leave. I said my goodbyes and thanks to everyone I got to meet, especially Peter and I also got to see his grandson too. Got many hugs and kisses from people I met, I really hope I get to go to the next Bondstars.com event next year, fingers crossed that there gonna be other Bond events in the future.

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When my next opportunity is going to be I do not know but I am looking forward to it, next on my list is to bake for the Macmillan coffee morning this week coming up so I will see how this goes and if everything turns out o.k.

 

All that is left to say is Thank you Peter Lamont, Bondstars and all other special guests- crew and Bond Girls who came to Pinewood Studios.

 

Nunquam Deditioneum

Ready, set get Bond In Motion

4 Sep

Hey Mediadreamzers

 

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It’s been awhile since I wrote a post, granted it isn’t media production related but it is media related. Have had a few days going round London seeing sights and shows, but the most fun and important was going to the London Film Museum, to see the ‘Bond in Motion’ exhibition. I had been meaning to go for ages and finally managed to find time to go and during a week where the temperature was in the 30’s, so my mission, which I accepted for Queen and Country in the spirit of British duty, and because I wanted to go. My driver’s licence was at the ready, just a shame that I couldn’t drive any of the cars, though if I was to pick one I would find it really difficult as they are all so cool and have there own signature mark from each featuring in their own film.

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There were two floors to the exhibition; upstairs there were sketches and some of the props from the films, and of course on the lower level all the cars and devices used/ featured in the film. There were also cabinet displays of a mixture of things in, clapper board, passports etc. Next to the cars were TV screens playing snippets from the films & info screens with ‘did you know’ facts, and it got a lot more interesting.

There was a photo booth where you could be 007; wearing a tuxedo top and bow tie standing in the background frame of a barrel of a gun making the Bond pose. In answer to any question here yes I had some fun and had a few shots taken, just for a laugh. At the end of the exhibition you could sit in the cafe before going to the gift shop and of course it would be rude not to leave without getting something, so of course I got what everyone usually gets when they say ‘been there, done that’; a t-shirt. Something else to add to my Bond collection. I suggest if you haven’t been go it is a brilliant exhibition to go to and if your passing through Borough market then go for it.

Have a few events coming up this month but the most important one is at the end of the month and it is at my second-home; Pinewood, so keep your eyes on my blog and you will see something in about three from today. Also I had fun taking a selfie shot on the London Tour bus.

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Nunquam Deditionem

Before Tilbury A Dream

16 Apr

Hey Mediadreamerz

Time seems to be going by so fast that I’m frightened to blink too often. Though I have used my time wisely over the last couple of weeks learning new skills and taking on new activities. I’m enjoying fencing, something I have been doing for the past 6 weeks and although it is exhausting I am loving it. The other activity is self defence classes, which is taught by Army cadets so I will know how to kick someones ass if they try to attack me, I write this in a jokey tone. One main important point is that both of these skills will bulk up my CV, specifically for work as an extra/ SA as any unusual skills, hobbies, traits can enhance your changes for particular roles. It is also a good ice-breaker for meeting people in the future.

 

I digress, must get back on track, back to the topic of my post which was a meeting of writers and production crew on the above planned project. Getting into the venue was a challenge but found a way inside before heading to the meeting room. Alan the Director, introduced everyone there and I learned that some of the writers have worked with the BBC and other well-known production companies, so a lot of credits and merits to their names. The idea was explained by Alan that he wanted three types of media into the production, though the issue was distracting and confusing audiences with too much with a short running time. Once the writers had discussed their suggestions on what could be done instead it was agreed that individual meetings with each group of people needed to be arranged for us all to move forward onto the next stage. It was great meeting new people who asked me for one of my Paul Smith inspired- styled business cards (I need to restock my card case now). It is always good to have meetings in order to share creative ideas and to eliminate issues and find solutions to approaches that won’t work.

 

So I have my extra curriculum activities to keep me busy, and looking to learn so much more, it maybe something I do next year as part of my next set of goals/ challenges to try my hand at; makes my year much more interesting. I just hope I can remember what I was taught last Sunday if we are asked to re-cap everything.

Nunquam Deditioneum

Dotting the I’s and Crossing Paths

27 Mar

Poster pic

Hey Mediadreamerz

What a bit of a quiet time I have had so far, at guess because of Easter being upon us tomorrow in UK. It is scary as to how early it is this year and someone kindly pointing out on Facebook that yesterday marked 9 months till Christmas. Yes that will be the first thing on people’s mind.

Well, Easter for me is normally spent working part in a supermarket (something I no longer do I say as I sit typing away here) and having a day where I could simply do without the questions, and the long hours. Only this year I got to enjoy part of my Easter going to see and support a friend’s introductory premiere of a film that he has worked on, and is hoping to develop it a step further. I admit on the morning of the screening I had this feeling that public transport would be against me what with it being Easter Saturday but I made it with 15 minutes to spare. After meeting up with the cast, are and others who had come to support the production it was nice to have a few minutes to catch with people I have worked with in the past on various projects and with others who I am friends with on Facebook but haven’t actually met face-to-face, until now.

One thing I enjoy about the Broadway Cinema is screen room 4, granted that is a strange thing to say but the reason for that is it is called the Paul Smith and of course the chairs and inside and designed and inspired by him; love those striped chairs you get to sit in. Once in and the introductions had been done by Michael Sales from Midland Movies and Ben the Director of the film and of the company that made the film; B Squared. B Squared is local production company in the Midlands, so anyone in the East needing a production filming go to this one. Once all introduction were done and dusted, the screening commenced.

Afterwards it was a Q&A session with the actors and the director and the production, their experiences, the ideas and everything and anything related to the whole experience. The fun part was seeing the cast and crew signing the big banner poster that was outside as it moved each time someone wanted to write something, and before going in we got to have our pictures taken with it. 

My pic with poster

 

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And one thing I remember taking away from the day was being called a ‘Fountain of Youth’; reason because I told a few people in conversation how old I am and watching the look of sheer surprise on their faces with them thinking I was somewhere in the region of 19-22, how kind people cane be.

I’m waiting for the next media event or project something that might be happening once Easter has come and gone; Happy Easter to all.

Nunquam Deditioneum

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