Friday, June 30, 2017

CMBA Blog Profile: An Ode to Dust




The CMBA profiles two classic movie blogs per month. Today we're featuring Nicole from An Ode to Dust.

You could say An Ode to Dust is an adventuresome blog.

In addition to film critique and Hollywood history, Nicole delves into many subjects on her site, such as book reviews, festival coverage and road trips to discover areas connected with classic film.

She has an appreciation for the legends, such as Audrey Hepburn and Buster Keaton, but she has a very special connection with Lon Chaney who, like Nicole, was a CODA (Child of Deaf Adults).

"I have been looking for ways to connect Deaf culture to film history," says Nicole, "and when I found out that Lon Chaney was also a fellow CODA, I was over the moon. Every so often, I try to share little bits of Deaf culture (along with my experiences as a CODA) through my writing, hoping to shed some light on a subject that is so unfamiliar to many."

You can read Nicole's piece on Lon Chaney HERE.

  
CMBA: What sparked your interest in classic film?
An Ode to Dust: I can only recall watching a lot of older comedy shows with my dad while I was growing up—mainly I Love Lucy, Bewitched, The Three Stooges, and assorted cartoons like Tom & Jerry and Felix the Cat. As far as films, I do remember watching The Wizard of Oz, The Sound of Music, Singin’ in the Rain, and The Birds. As I got older, I found myself becoming more interested in watching films from the 1950s and 1960s, and one way or another, I wanted to see even more of what classic cinema had to offer.


CMBA: What makes a film a “classic” in your opinion?
An Ode to Dust: I would say “classic” means something that is timeless, highly-revered, spans across multiple generations, and holds some sort of significant meaning to people. However, if we’re talking “classic” as an adjective rather than a noun, I usually think of classic films ranging from the talkie era to somewhere before the 1970s. The cutoff date is still a bit hazy for me.

CMBA: What classic film(s) do you recommend to people who say they hate old movies?
An Ode to Dust: I would have to tailor my suggestions depending on the person and figuring out which aspects they seem to like in a film. However, I will hands-down recommend Buster Keaton to anyone at any time. I find his work so accessible, down-to-earth, and fun for all ages. I’d probably start off by showing one of his early silent shorts, maybe something like One Week or The Scarecrow.


CMBA: Why should people care about classic film?
An Ode to Dust: I personally find it fascinating that classic film allows us to see people in past eras living and breathing and moving (even if they are acting out a story), and that life was still going on in a way that words and still images can’t fully capture. Film records a certain essence of time in motion, and in a much more spatial sense. From its beginnings, you can see layers of history develop through the history of film itself.


CMBA: What is the most rewarding thing about blogging?
An Ode to Dust: I love that I have a space to share my own thoughts and be able to look back on memories or sentiments regarding a specific film or event. It is an extension of my passion and a place where I can hone my writing skills, all while connecting with many like-minded people of whom I would have otherwise never met before.

CMBA: What challenges do you face with your blog, and how do you overcome them?
An Ode to Dust: I tend to go overboard on proofreading. While it may be good practice, I end up stressing myself out a lot because of it. Another issue is finding the time and energy to write during the middle of a busy semester. Somehow, I’ve been able to get through the latter all right by updating at least once a month, but I’m still struggling to find a way to break my intense proofreading dilemma.


CMBA: What advice would you give to a new blogger?
An Ode to Dust: Definitely have a strong enthusiasm for what you want to write about and share. Even if it’s for an audience of none, just keep writing whenever you can. Don’t worry too much about finding a “niche” or a “voice” right away. With time, that will develop. Find other blogs you’d enjoy reading and interact with them. You can learn a lot through others. Joining a blogathon is a good way of doing this!


Thank you for joining us, Nicole! You can visit An Ode to Dust HERE.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

CMBA Blog Profile: GlamAmor



The CMBA profiles two classic movie blogs per month. Today we're featuring Kimberly from GlamAmor.

Kimberly of GlamAmor is a true CMBA celebrity.

Not only is she the manager of marketing at Sony Pictures Television, she's a popular lecturer at the historic Annenberg Beach House in Santa Monica with her series on "History of Fashion in Film".

Kimberly has spent her time in the trenches doing research on – and writing about – fashion and film history, and she acts as a consultant for several organizations including TCM, BBC Worldwide, Christie's Inc., and the Los Angeles Tourism Board.

GlamAmor is a fascinating site with articles, event coverage and taped interviews. One of her favorite interviews is with Monika Henreid, the daughter of an accomplished Hollywood actor.

"I thoroughly enjoyed doing my interview with Monika Henreid," says Kimberly. "It offered the opportunity to put a spotlight on costume designer Orry-Kelly as well as delve into the backstories of both Now, Voyager and Casablanca with the daughter of Paul Henreid. I also want to work more in front of the camera, so this was a great experience to both host and produce the project."

You can watch Kimberly's interview HERE.


CMBA: What sparked your interest in classic film?
GlamAmor: Like so many, my interest began with my family. My father was a police officer and would watch film noir when he came home after work – The Maltese Falcon, The Big Sleep, and many others. As a child, I came to love them, too. Then when I was older, the Hitchcock films became another gateway into more and more classic cinema.



CMBA: What makes a film a "classic" in your opinion?
GlamAmor: Of course there's much debate about this. I tend to think of movies from the dawn of Hollywood through 1979 as being part of classic cinema. But there are movies beyond that timeframe that have a high quality about them – from direction to acting to production design – as well as a timelessness that can qualify them as classics, too.

CMBA: What classic film(s) do you recommend to people who say they hate old movies?
GlamAmor: Oh, the Hitchcock movies are an easy way to address this. They have a certain style about them that appeals to most people. I see people light up when I mention them.



CMBA: Why should people care about classic film?
GlamAmor: This is my mission in life, really, teaching and reminding people why they should care about classic film. Those movies are the originals – so much of what we see coming from Hollywood today relate in some way to those classics. This is also true in something that I focus on in my work, which is the costume design and overall style. The fashion industry draws inspiration from classic cinema all the time. Really, for anyone in the arts, classic cinema remains a source of inspiration. It proves the ongoing relevance of these films.



CMBA: What is the most rewarding thing about blogging?
GlamAmor: Sharing what I know and love about classic film, and being able to reach an audience around the world.

CMBA: What challenges do you face with your blog, and how do you overcome them?
GlamAmor: I don't think the website itself has presented challenges, other than the technical ones we all deal with.



CMBA: What advice would you give to a new blogger?
GlamAmor: Make sure you write about something that you truly know and love, not what you think you should be writing about for the audience or advertising, for example.  Also make sure you pick a pace - how often you post - that's something that you can do without it overwhelming you. It's not as much about quantity as it is about quality.



Thank you for joining us, Kimberly! You can visit GlamAmor HERE.