February is, of course, awards show season, and we adore our recurring Grammys, Oscars, Designers Guild, and so many more gigs. But, The Kobe Memorial was yesterday, and I can't seem to shake the sadness. Such beautiful families that are stricken with tragedy, not to mention the global impact...
We were asked to do some projection work for the City of Vernon for the entire NBA season to honor Kobe. These new monster Elation Proteus fixtures did the trick from 400 feet away... Please, disregard the awful stringer lights on the legs of the Water Tower – those are an old mock-up by others. I dropped some award show shots In at the end to show my respect. Thanks to Sequoia and Jerry Hayes, and our dear NARAS clients, and all of the crew and staff that pulled off a sick month. Now, we just need these virus numbers to drop and the DOW to climb.
All in a month's work…
Remember when people laughed at the concept of doing big entertainment and events at a Mall? I do.
Mall gets last laugh...
Well, Westfield Century City is more like a Fantasyland than a mall, but their groundbreaking concept of building a massive stage and Audio/Video/Lighting rig with multiple event and activation spaces is a smash success. We were invited to manage the technical side of these shows and events almost 3 years ago, and we installed the much-beloved David Olson to be our guy on site. Things have gone so well we just added another full-timer, Alex Mackyol to the staff. I love this partnership – it's a very big corporation, but it's managed by people like you and me, so it's just another extension of the family. More cities coming!
Next Stop: (REDACTED). Stay tuned!
We're still buzzin’ a bit, a week after this one. What a wonderful process - Jeff dreams up a 360 degree LED surround concept with presentation stages on all four walls, for an upcoming UGG sales meeting. We pitch the CEO and a few of his SVPs, and they're intrigued. We then take notes from the client, re-work the design a couple of times, re-present a couple of times, and BAM, we're on. Jeff and Matt Warren then spend the next four months working on content and showflow and the overall message, alongside these hard-hitting execs. As we get closer to show time, we feel the weight of the importance of this show to a big corporation. They trusted us to deliver, so we best not blow it. We didn't. It was amazing. Then Haim comes on at the end of the 1 hour presentation and rocks everyone. It's everything any of us want in a gig - Creativity, Wicked tech, Mavericks surf just outside the venue, and Visionary clients who trust us...
Thank you, Gaia.
So I'm digging through all of our October gigs, trying to catch a vibe on what this month meant to me, and all I could see was bright color! It was great – made my day happier. Not sure why, but everyone from Anastasia to Empire Events to Adobe to Givenchy to Nicki Minaj went heavy-color at their October events. Cardi's all dyed-out, dang, even Thom Yorke embraced the full rainbow (mandatory fan-boy shot). We had a strong month – lots of opportunity to rock people's worlds, and one humbling indiscretion on live comm that we all learned and grew from.
Out of darkness comes light!
We do enjoy being busy. Mostly after we've pulled off the gigs. There has not been a dull moment lately. Here are some of the 30 gigs we did this month: Emmy's Ball with Sequoia, Super-Secret Nike thing that I can't post, Worldz, which is a most-excellent leadership conference, Nissan tour going coast-to-coast, USC gigs to welcome the new President, Insanity in Lemoore with an artificial surf pool for Breitling, audio support for NARAS as they start putting together the 2020 Grammy nominees, promotion for the new James Bond movie "No Time To Die" coming out on 04/08/2020. Oh, and Fan-Boy-ing with Bon Iver at the Forum.
That and 21 other gigs. Sorry for the rough and random post, but I gotta get on a plane!
August was an interesting month - It was meant to be a little break between the summer stuff and the madness that's coming our way in the Fall. But a bunch of late bookings came up, and many of them were new shows on Amazon, Netflix, Epix, etc. I was most attracted to this one we did with AgenC and Netflix, screening and celebrating the new Netflix doc about Travis Scott called Look Mom I can Fly. Great story and cool gig for us - screening was at Barker Hangar and afterparty was at a joint on the third street promenade. Chris and Ryan pulled out this slick projection ribbon around the event space, and did it in a few hours. Sweet. Keep your eyes open at the end of this video for some nice projection on Sunset Tower Hotel on the strip, for Amazon's new show Carnival Row.
Stand by for September, Yo!
No more June Gloom - July has been a monster. And so much diversity – what a gift! Formula E race in Brooklyn, screenings and premieres and launches for new shows and brands including Pennyworth and Pat McGrath and Jbrand, righteous convention work with Comic-Con and VidCon booths, Concert on Rodeo Drive, super-exclusive gig with pro sports stars and their agents learning how to up-the-ante with more social media presence, sweet gig celebrating our women's soccer heroines with Lebron, great art/projection project at Westfield with Wisdome. Nothing says life is good better a busy month and dome projections, right? Even got to hang with my boy at Formula E in NYC, eating lobsters with claws and seeing Adam Driver in Burn This. Every little thing is gonna be alright.
Weird day today. Bored with everything, missed a show last night by Samia, Dem debates make me fear orange more than ever, and I need to talk about something this month that got me really excited at work. I got nuthin. Except one - Lux Machina is a film industry tech company that builds insane software for film and television, and they asked us to support them in a demo to some studios. Wicked smart, young client-people, along with 21 year old Samia, to whom you are listening and whom I missed last night, got my blood moving for 9 minutes. Ligo and company put this 10lb rig in the 5lb bag that is the demo space, and they nailed it. It will hold loads of LED surfaces - I'll show you that in a month. Great client quote "Your guys didn't really seem like typical riggers. They seemed happy."
Maybe I should be doing some rigging to get out of the funk??
What a freaky day. We revealed this autonomous drone from a company called Skai (sky). Only diff here is the drone holds five passengers. On Wall Street but need to get to the upper west side in 3 minutes? Ring Skai and a driverless drone will meet you on the roof of your building and zip you up town. Seriously – As in there is already one test flying now and it all works. Dang! Best part is the drone runs on Hydrogen so there is zero emission. They'll launch them for taxis, cargo movement, EMT/Search and Rescue ops, and getting folks in the boonies to airports quickly. As the company says – it's commuting in the third dimension. Fo Shizzle!!
March came in like a Snoop Lion and dealt us some pretty great gigs. A lot of them. Here are five that stood out: Khalid doing a private event for Spotify at ROW downtown thanks to our pals at Crown and Conquer; new strategic partners, London-based Lively brought us to the Hotel del Coronado to rock some corporate meeting stuff with a big-ole LED screen; we did our first PTTOW gig (think inspired Ted Talks with a purpose); The Gathery of Girlboss fame included us on a Soul Cycle gig at Milk Studios; We lit an exhibit at the TV museum about Bob Fosse with the loyal and lovely David Rodgers; then it's all capped off with a premier for Epix' new show called PUNK about the early years. Best line from the panel that spoke before the film - Marky Ramone to Johnny Rotten: "F You, people only came to Sex Pistols shows to see Sid Vicious, not you."
Weird and wonderful month...
Erick Weiss had lunch with me about 3 weeks ago and told me about this mad gig that was coming down the pike. French designers TUFF were working with awesome film producer/man Lawrence Bender to do a big old show for the UCLA Institute of Environmental Sustainability. The show was to be called "Hollywood for Science." Perfect timing - right on top of The Grammys and Oscars, and losing our minds - Fuck it, we dove in. A fortnight later we wrapped an amazingly unique event, featuring Lauryn Hill and Cee Lo, and a bunch of compelling and important art and some supermodels and a famous quarterback married to one of said-supermodels. Wicked projection from David Corwin, matched with a Triptych LED wall set, David Flad getting his freak on, and Eric's arena-sized PA in a 15,000 tent. Special thanks to Zuk for TD'ing and not QuiT'ing, and for sure to Adam Rosen who begged me not to take the gig, but then jumped in and dealt with it after I did. It's Science, guys, believe it!