Feb 29, 2012

How to be a Big Girl: Working & Other Horror Stories

It's currently 12:15AM. And I'm still in the office with the boyfriend and our colleague, Adam. To be honest I did not realize that it was already past midnight.

I started working three years ago and it was quite accidental, more than anything. It was for my diploma's final semester group report, in which my groupmate got us a placement in a small youth-powered community called Youth Asia. Back then it was a small company, handling a forum in a small office in Kelana Jaya. But even after the project was over, I was asked to stay as an employee/trainee/thing and help handling a pretty large event that was going to happen at the end of the year. Me, not really willing to go back to school, I said yeah sure.

My stint as part of the organizing team for the Youth Engagement Summit 2009

Among the few speakers that were there, I got to see Twitter founder, Biz Stone

Sir Bob Geldof

And I got to meet amazing people from different countries in the South East Asian region.

But shortly after that, I was let go. I wasn't about to go back to school. Also if I did, I wouldn't have made it in time for registration anyway. Plus, I actually got my first choice of degree, which was Journalism. But that interest was slowly wearing off. 

I went on to working at a design firm doing copywriting for annual reports. It pretty much got be nowhere fast and after three months, I couldn't stand working there and just left. Which is how I landed a job in post production.

My best friend was working in this post house when he called me in for an interview. I knew close to nothing about post production except being able to cut here and there. I could put together a documentary for a class project, but for TV or film, I had no clue. The boss hired me after 10 days.

I realize that I probably learned more than most my ex-collegemates who took broadcasting ever will. In that sense, I think I take after my dad quite a bit where I HAVE to be thrown into it head first, rather than learning about it from a book.

Learning the keyboard shortcuts on Final Cut Pro took me a little over a week. In a month I could do digi beta transfers (albeit a bit slow), subtitle a complete documentary, reduce the grain and noise on archive footage for documentaries, etc.

Fast forward to two years, I'm working on an animated feature written and directed by a director from California, converting it into stereoscopic 3D. Which is pretty amazing. It's nothing from The Weinstein Company or anything like that but it's bigger than what I've been doing for the local market (which has already been shown on TV and cinema). I never had any formal training to becoming a 3D compositor or a video editor, I just kind of jumped into it because I actually found something that I enjoyed.

So girls, sometimes it's not about the amount of degrees you manage to obtain in your four years of college. Sometimes it's about liking what you do. I'm not saying education is not important but if that's the only thing you have going for you, you kinda need to stop worrying about the amount of As you're getting or not getting or how high your CGPA is, and worry about the possibility of having absolutely zero life and survival skills.

The world of production and post production isn't as glamorous as doe-eyed college kids think it is. You clock in late nights and sometimes 24-hour shift. I've been on a set for 26 hours before and it's far from glamorous, even for the talents. So if you want to go into this line, my advice is - don't. Stay away.

But if you insist, make sure you really, really love it because it's that type of industry. You have to really love it.

Till next time.

Feb 27, 2012

The Idiot Box: An Introduction to My Current Favorite Television Series

I watch a lot of TV. Which is no surprise considering most of my generation was raised on TV. You can also say television is in my blood. My father used to be a producer at a local television station and was also a sports newscaster on the local 8PM news when I was a little girl. I remember the days where I turn on the news at 8PM and wait till the sports news to come on so I could see my Dad.

My sisters used to be in a kids' school holiday variety show. I didn't feel comfortable being in front of the camera so I always stayed in the control room while they were shooting. I felt more in place in the control room than I do in front of the camera.

Which brings me to today, at the age of 24 and 1/2, I sit in front of the computer, behind the scenes of films, documentaries and television programmes. I don't even fancy going on set.

I never had any interest in local television shows. Sad, because I wish I could be more supportive of the industry I'm slaving for but as far as stories and acting goes, nothing beats the list I'm about to present to you. And because I'm super awesome (mainly because I have nothing better to do) I'm going to list it down according to days.

Feb 22, 2012

How to be a Big Girl: Where is my mind?

I'm writing this probably a stream of consciousness while I wait for a few (hundred) files to be transferred between servers which could really take a while. 59GB worth of files won't exactly take a second.

This year marks my second year working in post production. To be completely honest I never thought I would actually end up working in post but then again, I don't think there's too many people who actually 100% knew what they'll get themselves into.

2012 is just whizzing through and lo and behold, we're almost into March. I'm 25 this year and it's a pretty daunting thought. When I was a kid, growing older has always been a pretty exciting and scary thing. Exciting at the fact I would actually have more freedom (or so I thought) and scary and the thought of having more and more responsibilities.

I'm not a 25 year old woman. I'm a 25 year old girl.

I'm doing pretty fine career wise. Or at least I would like to think that I am doing pretty well. The next big step in my life as according to Dad is to either get a house or get married. I got a career and a car already, so either one of those would be next. But getting a house and getting married are both scary thoughts.

But you know, God has a funny way to prepare us for things we thought was scary. My moral and religious compass may not exactly point in its proper direction, but I suppose in our own ways, we try our best.

Feb 13, 2012

#Kitteh366 - I actually kinda suck at this

I actually kinda suck at this photo a day thing lol. So I think I'll try again next year. But I'll still post up photos when I do take some. Although I kinda wish I had a better camera on my phone to do this on the fly /firstworldproblems

It's still the same shit everyday - work, eat, sew, work, hang out and yep, you guessed it, work.

O life.

Feb 8, 2012


So a few weeks back I bought Hugo's Old Tyme Religion from iTunes. Today I found him on twitter (or at least I think it's him) and innocently asked a question which I thought wont ever get a reply.

And then...

brb starstruck.

Feb 7, 2012

Struggling with mediocrity.

This might just be my hormones speaking but humor me for a couple of minutes.

Ever since I was a kid I liked dabbling in new things. I love picking up skills left, right and center but my reoccurring problem is always the same: nothing I pick up, I'm extremely good at. It's like being good at starting up a company but never good in properly maintaining it. If there's anything that caught my eye, I may have done it already.

I've done everything from graphic designing to web designing, coding to painting, cooking to baking, making clothes to editing, taking photographs to writing poetry and all of these I'm either half good or horrible at.

I keep having this urge to be better at something and everything so I could blow people's minds. I love being extraordinary and different and talented. I know being talented in something takes years of practice and experience. But despite knowing this, I always feel like I failed in everything I do.

I struggle with being a talentless hack. I have very little under my belt that I could show for. I was never a great artist - I can't paint for shit. I was never a great offline editor - I don't have the patience for it.

I'm not beautiful. I'm not nice. I'm not talented. I'm not even close to be hardworking. And it's a shame because I'm a complete waste of space and taking up oxygen and resources that someone more deserving can have.

Feb 3, 2012

Something handmade

There are things in my life that I never imagined myself doing as a little girl. I was never much of a girly girl when I was younger. I always liked to hang out with boys and do boy things. No dresses, not even skirts.

But I realized that I got older I got more and more in touch with my feminine side. I soon realize that I could cook pretty well.

And then I tried my hand at sewing. The first full dress I made wasn't a total disaster but it wasn't as perfect as I imagined it to be.

Then I tried again and it looked a lot better.

Maybe it was because the cloth is slightly pricier than the previous one that I don't want to actually muck it up. And I guess you can call me addicted to making my own clothes, it's something I wanna continue doing. Which is why I got another book

The patterns in this book is a little bit more advanced than the first one but it's easily understandable enough. Thank god for pictures lol. And because of these books I never thought I'd get back to learning Japanese.

In the next coming months, I'll be making more dresses and hopefully share it with the world (for a small fee of course. Someone's gotta pay for the cloth and my work hours :p)

Why am I going away from post production? I'm not leaving it. This is just to help me out with my outstanding student loan so I don't have that monkey on my back anymore. That and of course, because I genuinely enjoy sewing :)