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Originally published at Curse & Quanta. Please leave any comments there.

And a lot of briefing/bringing y’all up to speed, because boy howdy, a LOT has been going on. In fact, I don’t even know where to start, so I’ll just start in the middle and work my way out.

First off, the campaign for the fourth card, the Imperatrix, is now live! You can find it here:

We’re already at 42% funding, which blows my mind and humbles me.

So, the Major Arcana continue to drive ahead, shredding the track. The Magician is days away from shooting. Here, have a peek at some stuff:

Sepulveda Dam Location 2 -1080Magician's Laurels -5Magician's Laurels - 4Magician's Laurels - 1Magician's Bone WandMagician's sword HangerMagician's Wheel

The High Priestess has already acreted a fair amount of fabric and props. I’m hoping that once I get the Magician in the can, the High Priestess will (prop and costume wise) come together quickly.

Because we hit a bit of a snag. The location that I chose initially for the High Priestess in NoCal…won’t work. It’s surrounded by a fence and a jog to get out to it. Unlike the Magician or the Fool, there’s an actual set piece that needs to travel to the site. The same is true of the next two cards, the Imperatrix and the Imperator.

So. I’ve had to rethink a few things. In a perfect world, I’d be able to get cast, crew, and set out to the locations that I want with no problems. Except I’m not Annie Liebowitz, Mark Milller, or Ridley Scott and with the attendant budgets that go with them.


So my current plan is thus: me and my camera have already begun to go out to the locations on my list and started shooting ALL of the master plates NOW that I will need at the exact time of day and place that I want. It only costs gas and me. And the occasional scramble over obstacles. And falling on my ass.

But I digress.

tl;dr: I’m accelerating the shooting of the master plates/backgrounds and discovered some good news in the process. As of today, I’ve shot the Echo Park Secret Swing, the old abandoned Los Angeles Zoo–seriously cool!–two different art deco underpasses, one in Pasadena and one over the LA River. Next, I’ll be heading out to Murphy’s Ranch, aka Hitler’s Bunker.

No. That’s not a mistype.

Then I need to rebalance the next locations I want, because every one after those is further out. Most likely, the Edwards AFB Boneyard will be next, then the Victoria/Laguna Beach tower, and the ship wreck trail.

In between all of these shooting loops, I will build all the sets that I need, until Cristi and others are available, which won’t be till October at the earliest. Then I rent a green screen studio, put model and set in front of a green screen and go to town. In fact, if I play my cards right, I’ll be able to shoot all damn day, rotating models and sets. For the NoCal models, I can have them all meet me in one location. Ditto, the SoCal models.

There’s actually a lot of upside to this. My producer-husband happens to do exactly this sort of work (it literally pays our rent) and knows how to talk to green screen lighting grips. I’ll have total control of the entire environment. It’ll also bring up the comfort level for the models. Instead of sweating their ass off in the desert, they will be in a climate controlled location with showers and bathrooms and kitchens. And down here in La La Land, you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting three green screen studios. Competition is fierce and the cost is really low, compared to dragging everyone and everything out to a location.

As long as I match light and color temp… Well, I think I might dare you to spot the difference.

I have the time. I just have to build and shoot as much as I freaking can. And like most things in my life, this may be a felix culpa. I seem to always land on my feet in a better situation when things go south like this.

Ooo! Also, once again, my primary model for the Imperatrix said YES! WOO! Two for two!

* * *

In the meantime, my jaw started aching like you would not believe last night, y’know, night before launch. I couldn’t tell if it was my teeth that were hurting and it was referring or if it were the ear and Eustachian tube that was giving me shit. It was the ear. It’s much better as of this evening, but gods, it fucking sucks. I got sick near the end for the High Priestess too.

Hello, Resistance.

Oh, and there is nothing worse than feeling an ear drain. GAH. It’s not painful. It just feels fucking gross.

And that’s it for the fish report with a beat! *random Roger Waters reference* I apologize for the novel, but I wanted to let everyone know what I’ve been up to while being relatively quiet here and elsewhere. I’ve been building and sewing and driving and shooting and… I’m a wee bit tired.

But I’m happy. Happier than I’ve been in a long long time. It feels good.


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