<![CDATA[Gary Jones Video Arkansas Travel Channel Arkansas Movies Arkansas History Channel - Blog]]>Sun, 05 Apr 2020 22:23:14 -0500Weebly<![CDATA[Volume 56, Number 6]]>Sat, 04 Apr 2020 03:56:22 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-56-number-6
With the COVID-19 pandemic playing havoc with filmmaking schedules and livelihoods, we are running a modest film contest, open to Arkansas filmmakers of all experience levels.  Some advisors have suggested that the "Stir-Crazy, Stuck-at-Home Film Contest" would be more descriptive, but "Isolation Imagination Film Contest" sounds a tad more classy.  Three $150 prizes (payable in cash or toilet paper) are admittedly mild incentives, but Grandpa is not making any money either during the coronavirus crisis.  And, yes, travel and history features are challenging to do at home, but that's the point: to challenge imaginations.  I doubt we will be deluged with entries, so your odds at winning are pretty good.  Just remember that I've been shooting and evaluating film for going on 57 years.  Therefore, shaky smartphone vids shot vertically and spit out as "home movies" are not likely to make the cut.  

Here are the complete rules:


Isolation Imagination Film Contest

Create a short narrative film, documentary feature or music video about Arkansas travel or history at home and submit it for a chance to win one of three cash prizes.
 
Staying at home doesn’t mean you have to limit your creativity. If you have an interest in video production and filmmaking (and have time on your hands), this contest might be for you.
  
Filmmakers, like the rest of the community, have been deeply affected by the coronavirus situation, with productions and industry events being postponed or cancelled. Organized by Gary Jones Video, this competition Arkansas filmmakers is aimed at trying to uplift the spirit of artists during these times of social distance and self-isolation. The contest is open to diverse filmmakers of all different skill levels. 
 
ArkansasTravelChannel.com and ArkansasHistoryChannel.com are offering two prizes of $150 for the top narrative short films or music videos made while staying at home or observing social distancing.

  • There is no entry fee.
  • The film must highlight either Arkansas History or Arkansas Travel (or BOTH—since travel and history/heritage are related), and if an entry  concerns “family connections or "family history", broadly defined, it will also be considered for a  $150 award from American Dream Genealogy and Research. 
  • The film must be under five minutes.
  • All filmmaking must follow the health and safety guidelines issued by city and state officials (e.g., limit your crew size; film in your homes or safe outside locations, etc.).
  • Only original concepts and executions will be considered.
  • Although family participation and younger filmmakers are encouraged, the film must be submitted by someone 18 years or older to be eligible.
  • Contest open only to Arkansas residents.
  • The film cannot include hate speech, adult content or advertising/infotainment.
  • All films must be submitted as a video link to Gary Jones Video  via Facebook Messenger as well as posted on the filmmakers’ social media pages with the hashtag #ArkansasTravelChannel, #ArkansasHistoryChannel or #IsolationImaginationFilm
  • One behind-the-scenes photo and a short description of the film and filmmaker(s) (200 words maximum) must be included with the submission.
 
Submissions close on April 30, 2020
 
This Isolation Imagination Film Contest was inspired by the Quarantine Film Contest launched in Edmonton, Alberta by 1844 Studios.  Our thanks to them for the inspiration and contest guidelines. For more information contact gwj1946@me.com.
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<![CDATA[Volume 56, Number 5]]>Sat, 28 Mar 2020 02:25:21 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-56-number-5
Long before there were 48-Hour Film contests around the country, Jones Productions sponsored a 24-Hour Film Contest here in Little Rock.  And this was before cheap HDSLRs and non-linear editor software on everyone's laptop.  (Come to think of it, there weren't even many portable computers around.....but I digress.) With the COVID-19 pandemic playing havoc with filmmaking schedules and livelihoods, we are introducing a modest film  contest, open to Arkansas filmmakers of all experience levels.  My first thought was calling it the "Stir-Crazy, Shelter-in-Place, Sky-Is-Falling, Cabin Fever Film Contest" --but decided that upon something less wordy.  Introducing:

Isolation Imagination Film Contest

Create a short narrative film, documentary feature or music video about Arkansas travel or history at home and submit it for a chance to win one of three cash prizes.
 
Staying at home doesn’t mean you have to limit your creativity. If you have an interest in video production and filmmaking (and have time on your hands), this contest might be for you.
  
Filmmakers, like the rest of the community, have been deeply affected by the coronavirus situation, with productions and industry events being postponed or cancelled. Organized by Gary Jones Video, this competition Arkansas filmmakers is aimed at trying to uplift the spirit of artists during these times of social distance and self-isolation. The contest is open to diverse filmmakers of all different skill levels. 
 
ArkansasTravelChannel.com and ArkansasHistoryChannel.com are offering two prizes of $150 for the top narrative short films or music videos made while staying at home or observing social distancing.

  • There is no entry fee.
  • The film must highlight either Arkansas History or Arkansas Travel (or BOTH—since travel and history/heritage are related), and if an entry  concerns “family connections or "family history", broadly defined, it will also be considered for a  $150 award from American Dream Genealogy and Research. 
  • The film must be under five minutes.
  • All filmmaking must follow the health and safety guidelines issued by city and state officials (e.g., limit your crew size; film in your homes or safe outside locations, etc.).
  • Only original concepts and executions will be considered.
  • Although family participation and younger filmmakers are encouraged, the film must be submitted by someone 18 years or older to be eligible.
  • Contest open only to Arkansas residents.
  • The film cannot include hate speech, adult content or advertising/infotainment.
  • All films must be submitted as a video link to Gary Jones Video  via Facebook Messenger as well as posted on the filmmakers’ social media pages with the hashtag #ArkansasTravelChannel, #ArkansasHistoryChannel or #IsolationImaginationFilm
  • One behind-the-scenes photo and a short description of the film and filmmaker(s) (200 words maximum) must be included with the submission.
 
Submissions close on April 30, 2020
 
This Isolation Imagination Film Contest was inspired by the Quarantine Film Contest launched in Edmonton, Alberta by 1844 Studios.  Our thanks to them for the inspiration and contest guidelines. For more information contact gwj1946@me.com.
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<![CDATA[Volume 56, Number 4]]>Thu, 27 Jun 2019 21:19:23 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-56-number-4
Ace photographer Kirk Jordan contributed the above photo from the Hobbs State Park Monument Trail.  I learned early on in my commercial filmmaking for Arkansas Parks & Tourism (now Arkansas Parks, Heritage & Tourism) to keep my eye out for where the still photographers like Kirk, Casey Cocker, Bernie Jungkind, Drew Harris and Chuck Haralson were shooting and to adjust my cinematography setups accordingly.  Steal....er, borrow your creative ideas from the best, as they say.

*****
I receive a constant stream of solicitations from web design companies, who helpfully, cheerfully point out that my web site is woefully inadequate--a problem they promise to rectify forthwith if I will only send them money.  One of last boiler-room salesmen offered his firm's service to ghost-write a monthly blog that would be filled with nifty-albeit-generic production industry advice.  You know, stuff about new cameras and editing tips and ongoing advice about the absolute necessity of hiring expensive professional web designers. :-)

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<![CDATA[Volume 56, Number 3]]>Sat, 06 Apr 2019 11:31:22 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-56-number-3
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<![CDATA[Volume 56, Number 2]]>Fri, 25 Jan 2019 19:17:00 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-56-number-2Picture

Below is a page from a November 1982 Hype & Jive--announcing the birth of our youngest son, who is now a new father (Alex and Samantha's first) in Chicago.
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<![CDATA[Volume 56, Number 1]]>Wed, 02 Jan 2019 17:24:30 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-56-number-1
"The Changing Production Economy"

"Volume 56" is no typo.  I've been a would-be satirist and card-carrying wiseacre for a long, long time.  Today, however, I tend to save my creative energy for filmmaking and leave the wordplay to young folks whose snark hasn't mellowed out with age and maturity.

Actually, this first entry of 2019 is courtesy of a creative director named Franklin Tipton, who is a partner and CCO of San Francisco ad agency Odysseus Arms (https://www.o-arms.com).  Writing in the January 2019 issue of SHOOT magazine, Tipton observed:

      "...the easy accessibility of the technological tools for content production has driven a rapid growth in the number of 'content producers' for clients to tap.  Smartphone penetration is at nearly 90% of U.S. households, meaning those     households have access to basic fill-in editing and broadcasting tools to deliver content to channels like Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram.  Anyone with a bit of gumption can become a content production house.(emphasis mine)

     "The need for assets and content continues to outpace the budgets set to make it.  Quality content will take more and more a backseat to the economics of a need for a volume of content to fill a rapidly expanding media space and time. Brands are feeling pressure to be across too many channels for the funds they have available.  In the process, brands are underinvesting in the quality needed to compel people to give a shit."

After describing pretty well the current production challenge of "free" User-Generated-Content (UGC), Tipton does provide a "happy ending" to his analysis, saying that (surprise, surprise) "really creative work will stand out more than ever."

​-30-


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<![CDATA[Volume 55, Number 4]]>Mon, 27 Aug 2018 14:02:39 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-55-number-4
ARKANSAS CINEMA SOCIETY-- "FILMLAND"

One sign of maturity, I suppose, is to be able to admit when one is out-classed.  As someone who has helped organize 24-hour-film competitions, screenplay writing contests, and motion picture education seminars, I know the challenges and work involved.  Kathryn Tucker, Jeff Nichols, Graham Gordy, and everyone at the Arkansas Cinema Society, however, have taken to a new, higher level the building of an Austin-like film culture in Little Rock.  In just its second year, the ACS has just completed the resoundingly successful, four-day FILMLAND event.

          The official ACS Mission Statement is worth quoting:  ​"We're building a film community in Arkansas where film lovers can watch films, share ideas, connect with each other, and nurture the new and existing film talent within our state through increased exposure to filmmakers and their art."

          I'll leave the recent pesky details and name-dropping to practitioners of the journalistic and public relations arts, but can attest that the proverbial good time was had by all during the first annual FILMLAND.  Congratulations.  Can't wait to see what Kathryn, Jeff, Gordy, their sponsors and associates do next.

                                                                           -30-
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<![CDATA[Volume 55, Number 3]]>Sat, 25 Aug 2018 16:21:14 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-55-number-3
RON ROBINSON

Ron Robinson moved on to an honored celestial marketing executive position on August 14.  His agency--Cranford Johnson Robinson Woods--had been a favorite production client for decades.

           Ron was one of the three Little Rock movers-and-shakers who were charitable enough to write letters of recommendation when I applied to the PhD program at the Department of Heritage Studies at Arkansas State University--Jonesboro.  He was the first person to address me a "Dr. Jones"--long before it was legitimate to do so.  Ron was one of those individuals to whom the terms "icon" and "larger-than-life" were NOT hyperbole.  He will be missed.  We are not likely to see his kind again in the Little Rock market.

          You can watch Ron's tribute video here.  It was produced by Deborah Grace and edited by Seth Padgett. Dr. David Stricklin--director of the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies--delivered one of Ron's eulogies.  You can view it here.  One of Ron's lasting legacies is the CALS Ron Robinson Theater.  I created a series of work-in-progress and Opening Night videos of the theater.  Check them out here.

           And, of course, it should be fitting that Ron has the last word.

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<![CDATA[Volume 55, Number 2]]>Thu, 09 Aug 2018 02:08:21 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-55-number-2
TOO MUCH INFORMATION (?)

In the olden days, I would mail out a printed Hype & Jive newsletter more or less every month.   I never knew how many tri-folds wound up in the trash without even having been read.  In my self-delusion, I imagined that EVERYBODY read every witticism and were all suitably impressed. :-)

In this day of marvelous technology, however, one can tell exactly how many people OPEN an email and how many people actually CLICK THRU to watch a video.  More to the point, one can determine all the recipients who DELETED an email without bothering to UNSUBSCRIBE.  This sort of precise snd unequivocal feedback is....well, sobering.  For example, for a perfectly wonderful video I sent around a few days ago, the open rate to date has been 37% with a 9.9% click rate.  Seems discouraging--except that the average "Marketing & Advertising" statistics are a 16.48% click open rate and 1.74% click rate.   In other words (for you math-challenged creative types), the industry average for every 100 emails in less that two people watching/reading your message.  By those industry standards, Gary Jones Video is doing "pretty good."

Alas, I miss the days of printing bulk rate postage stickers, dumping the printed newsletters into a mail box, and reveling in self-delusion. :-)  Of course, one can IGNORE the email program reports and remain blissfully ignorant of the challenge of direct email...but where's the fun in that. :-)
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<![CDATA[Volume 55, Number 1]]>Fri, 23 Mar 2018 07:54:16 GMThttp://garyjonesvideo.com/blog/volume-54-number-1Picture

If I may quote from the program of the Henry Awards Banquet at the 44th Annual Governor's Conference on Tourism held March 11-13, 2018 in West Memphis:

"Captured by legendary Arkansas filmmaker Gary Jones, ArkansasTravelChannel.com is a free online service from Gary Jones Video that offers original videos of tourism topics within Arkansas. Filmed from border to border though all seasons, these high-quality videos include eye-level and aerial views of Arkansas's breathtaking natural beauty, historic treasures, events, cities, and towns. Viewers can also enjoy insights from Gary's blog."

Uh, "insights"?  "Very occasional, random wiseacre asides" is more descriptive of my writing style, but I appreciated the description.  GJV was a finalist for the Media Support Award won by AY Arkansas magazine.

And, yes, I know this is in unnecessary boldface type.   I simply haven't figured out yet how to turn it off.

​Maybe next entry.
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