Just As I Thought

Say it with pixels

I often tend to maneuver myself into corners I can’t get out of, especially professionally. I love to try new things and push the envelope, it’s a great challenge when you work on the cusp of not having any money. But when you push the envelope, people expect you to do it all the time, from then on.
Back in 2001, the president of the association where I work challenged me to come up with a way to honor the other 80 presidents in our organization’s history. After I’d been working for months on a 5-minute film to do this, September 11 happened. I had to take apart what I did and make it more… well, somber.
The next year, the following president simply assumed that I’d do a film for him. As I had done the first one in my own spare time, using all my expensive video gear, I calculated how much it would cost to do it: $40,000. Somehow, I was convinced to do it again — for free — and it turned out great, integrated with American Indian dancers under a rear projection screen.
By 2003, I was getting stressed because I was still doing it at home, for no pay, and it with the loss of my assistant it was getting tougher and tougher to do both my regular burden of work, my assistant’s, and the film in the amount of time I had. The 2003 video wasn’t all that great as a consequence, but they all loved it, so who am I to judge? I must admit that even I thought the end was cool — I put up the names of everyone who was attending the conference, and when the camera pulls back the names all form the number “1”. Neat… and surprisingly difficult to do.
Which brings us to 2004. Once again, I’ve been slaving over a warm G5 for the last month or so, late into the night, to come up with one — any — idea that could work on a big projection screen in front of a thousand people. Finally, I think I’ve finished.
No, I won’t show it to you (except for this one frame) because it’s world premiere will be next Friday, November 19 at 8:00am. But, since it’s going to debut at our Balitmore conference, it’s only right that it’s based around a single word: “Believe.”


(If you want to see the previous conference videos, hop over to http://www.cowancreative.com/video/)


  • Those videos are awesome. I especially like the “day has just begun” one. The timeline with the archival photos, and “Let the River Run” in the background… fantastic.

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