Monday, May 26, 2014


I always stay at this backpackers in Hollywood.

I like it because they have a bar and you get to meet people. Some who work in Hollywood.

I also decided to look up alternative film-maker Damon Packard. We tried to go bowling with his friend Steve driving us around but they were all full of teenagers there for thanksgiving or something, I don;t know. Still it was fun.

I also hung out with Sabina Lokic from Hanging at Picnic Rock. We went to this theatre. I don't remember its name.

Outside I took this photo.

Which surprised Sabina as Martin Landau is her friend and acting teacher. I liked him from Space 1999, which, as a kid I watched on Friday night at my Grandma's house.

He was also great as Bela Lugosi in one of my favourite films, Ed Wood. I found Bela's star too.

Then I went home and to another film festival I wasn't in.


We got back to the office late at night after a long drive and a long chat with Abraham, one of the festival selectors. He is also a director for a porn film festival they have in Mexico and a teacher at a local film school. I promised I'd draw a picture for him but Emma had, had enough and we went to a hotel. Not before we got to see inside the office though.

Are they props for film? Decorations? I don't know. I tried to get Abraham's address to post some stuff to him but he was too hard to contact after that.

I guess he had moved onto the next thing. I went back to L.A. and a few days in Hollywood.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


Retribution had got into the Morbido film festival in P√°tzcuaro, Mexico. Emma and I went over. It was a blast from day one.

They put us up in the most beautiful hotel I have ever stayed in. The whole town was amazing.

The opening night included a performance, a lot of stuff said in Spanish, that we had no idea what they were saying, and a party in an old nunnery.

Here's Emma with some Mexican girls.

And here's Emma with the festival director Pablo Guisa, a gentleman and a scholar.

Emma, and Richard Stanley, the director of Hardware who had a new cut of Dust Devil that they screened. I'd never seen it. A truly wonderful and sinister film. We spent a lot of time with Richard. A very interesting man.

Laura Rojas, our personal host for the few days we were there. 'Oh no Laura, don't bite me. Oh I have tripped and fallen, nothing can save me...  ...where did she go?'

The festival is free and people dress up. This guy, Frank, put on a jacket. Forgot to put on his skin however.

I saw a lot of movies, some very late at night. The screening went down well, a lot of people asked questions. It was hosted by Abraham who dressed up as a character from Clive Barker's, Night Breed.

Here's another short film maker, Syl  Disjonk, having a cuddle with Abraham at our screening.

 And here I am with Pablo and Andrew Mack from Twitch magazine. I had a great time, learnt a lot about film making, had some great chats with some great people, made a lot of friends and contacts and handed my film out to a lot of people, including other festival directors, but, in the end, nothing much came of it. I thought we were just getting started but it was really Retribution's highest point.

It seems like everybody else go to got back and hang out again the next year but without much work at home, or a new film, there wasn't a snowballs chance in hell that Emma and I could return. Maybe it's just too far away.

Anyway, it came to a close and we went back to Mexico City, and the Morbido office.

Friday, May 16, 2014


After a bit of a win at VCA, I put up a website to promote the film and provide info for any festivals it was submitted to. I drew up a festival list and started sending it out.

I tried all the big ones first, the school sent it off to a couple as well. It didn't get into anything. I tried to refocus on Horror or Animation festivals but again, it didn't seem to get much interest, even in festivals I'd been in before with lesser material.

Maybe it was the combination of live-action and animation, not enough animation for animation festivals, too much for horror festivals. Was it just too long? I don't know. No one else seemed to know either.


At the 2011 end of year VCA screenings held at ACMI, Retribution did really well.

It won;

The Film Victoria Award for Best Masters by Coursework (Animation) Production.

Digital Pictures Award for Best Achievement in Editing.

E H Shephard Award for Animation.

Here is Shaun Micallef handing me a rolled up bit of something.

It was also nominated for The Renegade Award for Most Daring and Innovative Production.

Emma Haarburger, the Producer, was also nominated for the Shaun Miller Award for Best Producing Student.

After this photo was taken I kissed Emma goodbye for the last time, lept into my suit of gold and flew up to heaven, leaving the Earth forever.  My job, well and truly done.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

JED the Dog. 1999 - 2014

We got Jed as a puppy in Warrnambool around October in 1999 (our landlord suggested we get a dog after our house was robbed). The guy who owned them asked me to sit down while he went and got the puppies to let me pick one. As soon as he opened the gate they all ran inside and straight past me,  except for one that jumped into my lap. The guy said 'that's the one I wanted to give you.'

We took him home to Footscray and all moved to Cockatoo a few years later.  My partner left and took our daughter to Sydney but left me the dog. I got a bit mixed up and moved around a lot after that. Jed was a consistent thing in my life which my young daughter needed to see when she visited.

He would sleep on the floor of the bedroom, going to bed when she did, which made her feel safe. I remember one sad day when he went through the house looking for her after she had gone home to Sydney.

I also remember him being very patient with her when she would do things like, tie him to her bike and try to get him to pull it. One day he walked up to me with paint all over him. After a bit I realised it was make-up she had put on him from a kids make-up kit.

He's in this film with Garry. The barking and growling are sound effects added in later.

I was considering using him in Hanging at Picnic Rock but decided against it as filming a death scene for a dog might be a bit too complicated. He is in this video on our locations scouting though. More towards the end.

He was a pretty constant part of my life. I could take him travelling, camping, to parties and art openings. A lot of people got to know him.

In 2010 he was beginning to have problems walking, by 2014 I decided to put him down. It was an awful experience and there seems to be no way around the guilt. I took him to the Avonsleigh vet, as he was still on their files from Cockatoo, and, on Jan 23rd, I buried him in the Dandenong ranges where we spent a lot of time.

Sonnet, my daughter, called me up on the day and wanted constant updates. She was back in Sydney but had built him a little shrine.

I put a little tribute on Facebook and a lot of people said some very nice things. I was very surprised at how many people new him.

I will probably get another dog one day but now is not a good time. I don't think I can really replace him though. He was around for a lot of big changes in my life that I'd rather not go through again. At times it made things hard, to have a dog to look after, but also it gave me an anchor and a focus on something other than my own problems. Life was simple for Jed. I will try and remember and learn from that.

But for me it is an end of an age. My shadow is gone and I will miss him.


Well I've neglected this blog for far too long and it's time to get back into it.

I'll put some stuff up soon on the short film Retribution. It didn't do that well on the short film circuit and I don't know why because it had its moments including a couple of screenings at Morbido film festival in Mexico, which I will talk more about later.

Here's a pic.

I'll put some stuff up about the comics I've been doing including this, which is up to 5 pages now. About 15 to go.

And I need to update the progress of my next film Blood for the Demon's Daughters. Here's the latest drawing of one of the daughters.

All that and more in no particular order.

Sunday, May 4, 2014


One of my best friends and a significant life changer took his own life this year at 41. He was in my world for a substantial amount of years and had a funny habit of turning up unannounced at major points.

Sadly I hadn't seen much of him over the last 8 years our last encounter being a phone call he made to me after he saw my Hanging at Picnic Rock short in 2011.

 He was a keen and talented guitarist and in 2003 he composed and played the score for a film I had made. It was recorded over 3 days in an old farmhouse in Wangoom, Victoria. There is a story that goes with it that I considered including in Issue 1 of Confessions of a Rookie Film Maker. Even though I had the space I never did. I regret that now and plan to include it in a future edition.


 Here is a link to the film or you can download or listen to the music here,

I can't quite believe he is no longer with us, but to me, he will be around forever. It is not the same world without him.