Once upon a time, a dear friend and wonderful artist, Lynn Sanders, and I were working on posters for an event at RT. Connie had done costumes; they were beyond magnificent. As my daughter and her partner posed, we were like a group of clucking hems, oohing and aahing over the pair. We thought the pictures were so gorgeous, they deserved a book. But this is real life, things happened, and the idea came to half fruition, then wilted onto the back burner.
Well, things rise as they fall, and once again, we're looking at this project. Once- upon-a-later-time, I was talking with my music partner, and he envisioned a book with words and beautiful illustrations and pictures--a Christmas book, with a Christmas CD.
Sounded good, sounded fun.
I happen to have a friend who happens to have a company that specializes in illustrated books. And I work mainly for a company I adore, but who doesn't do this type of book, and thinks it will be fun to see it come to full fruition.
So . . . .
So, this week, we started working again. It was fun, hectic, hard work, and insane. I do mean hard work--even I do not usually crash to sleep at 8:30 at night.
But it was great. Thursday, the troops piled into Miami. En masse, we went to the new Outback in S. Miami. I had warned them, but the wait staff was a bit overwhelmed--my brother-in-law never called me dial-a-party for nothing! But the next morning, we were up, out to Coral Castle where the folks were great, the scenery worked perfectly, and their coffee, much needed, was always flowing. Our tent more or less made a great fitting room; Connie Perry's costume creations were shimmering and beautiful, and the visitors had a good time trying to figure out just what the hell was going on. Sister-in-law-in-law Teresa threw a fantastic barbecue for us all at her house when the day was done, and all was well. But up early, early the next day, and back at it. Two students from Chynna's school were models for two of the main characters; Abdiel--I've seen his growth into a fabulous young actor since he was about 12!--was a magnificent "bad guy." He was a tremendous sport, since the character is photographed falling into a watering trough. Patrick was beloved by the camera. Extras were my aunt, uncle, niece, baby nephew, Graham, and friends, and all went through the long day of dress up, hurry up, and wait, creating a lot of fun and laughter.
I am the evil countess in this thing. So I was running back and forth from the schedule book, doing some of the directing for context, getting the right actors out for the right shots, etc. And there is the schedule book is my favorite line Connie wrote down in the list of actors to appear in the scene.
"Cherif, waiting to be superimposed."
We all laughed. Cherif, the main heroic character--shot already--is not, we're pretty sure, walking around breathlessly waiting to be superimposed. We're imagining he's actually a little busy back in Illinois working--and with his wife and three kids. But it's the kind of vision that can make you smile, yeah, sure, Cherif, sitting there, oh so breathlessly awaiting his super-imposition!
Bobby got to be his stand-in and stunt double. Not a problem--his character is a goner not long after the prologue.
Conveniently, right across the street, are a Subway and a Pizza Hut. Very easy to run over for lunch orders. And the people at Coral Castle are as nice as can be; they snacky stuff is just fine as well, and though we brought ice chests and drinks, they afforded more of an alternative for anyone who wished a different sensation on the tongue. It was hot. But, I still insist, better than the possibility of snow. I had wanted to shoot in Miami--there's just something about Chicago. I have never gone there in winter when I haven't wound up stuck at O'Hare.
Finally, the last shot. The watering trough. We try not to totally soak people until we have to.
Then I, who have lived here my entire life, and insist it's almost impossible to get lost because of the grid, made a wrong turn. I was anxious to tell Teresa that there was another Sonny's to the north, but then I saw the sign for Card Sound Road and wondered how the hell there could be an entrance to it so far north . . . .
Then, of course, I realized I was taking the young men to the Keys, rather than home, and turned around. As we headed back toward the Gables, I saw the streets flooded everywhere and realized that miraculously, we had escaped the rain. A very good omen. I'm so into the whole college thing with Chynna, it was igreat to get to hear Abdiel's journey on the same route.
Connie had made Graham a medieval costume for the shoot. He is the child of the Great Duke Fiorelli and his countess--about to grow up to be the hero. He was supposed to be in the crowd shot.
But one shot came out so incredibly well . . . .
I'm very glad to say that I would personally buy the book for that shot alone!