Thursday, February 18, 2010


Argghh! I thought I'd have this (above) science-fiction story up today, but I'm having Photoshop problems again. Will someone please tell me why layers that are supposed to be locked, unlock themselves and change names? The background layer (supposedly locked) becomes layer one, without me doing anything to it. Layer one looses its image and becomes transparent, even though I'm looking at it on the screen, and it's not transparent. AAAAAAARRRGGGHH!!!!!

Just so I don't start throwing things, I think I'll switch to trying out Pages (mac's version of Word) for an hour or so. I need to learn it so I can start writing the pamphlets I want to sell in the Theory Corner Store. The first one's on the subject of showmanship as it relates to animation. Pages looks pretty easy, so I'm not expecting many problems.

On a lighter subject, here's (above) a terrific video of Vicki Carr singing "It Must Be Him." I was reminded of it when I heard it in "Moonstruck," which I saw again for the sixth time last night. Geez, I wish I'd written that story myself! I love the way it pretends to be naturalistic, but is actually much larger than life. It's Shakespearean in the sense that it's a lot of set pieces strung together, with an emphasis on beautiful language, overt theatrics, and surprisingly deep philosophical ideas.

The Carr song is incredible. The woman in the song tries to convince herself that she doesn't need the man who's slighted her, but when the phone rings she turns into an abject, quivering bowl of jelly, ready to give him whatever he wants. In my opinion, that kind of vulnerability to hurt is essential to romance. As the Nicholas Cage character says in Moonstruck, love isn't about can be a disaster for the people involved. It might bring them misery and humiliation, but if they fail to seek it out, they'll never have a chance to experience the greatest pleasures of life.


Mark Simonson said...

The background layer is a special layer, going back to when Photoshop didn't have layers (first couple versions). But it's possible to turn it into a "normal" layer. It sounds like you're doing that without meaning to.

Could it be that you're double-clicking or option-double-clicking on the background layer in the layers palette? Doing that will convert the background layer to a normal layer.

Anonymous said...

"Moonstruck" has a terrific opening and second act, but totally fizzled out before any of the marvellous setup stuff could be satisfyingly paid off in its third. Yes, it won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay but that means nothing. And the writer, John Patrick Shanley, went on to write and direct another film with a hideous third act fizzle: "Joe VS. the Volcano"...

Eddie Fitzgerald said...

Mark: Many thanks for the help. What a pal, what a pal! I may have made the mistake you mentioned, I'm not sure. When I try again i'll definitely keep what you said in mind.

Anon: Interesting analysis! For me it didn't fall apart at all in the third act, though I read that the big kitchen table sequence was a struggle for the actors and director, and had to be reconstructed on the scene and in the editing.

I love the kitchen sequence. If it needed doctoring, then the people who did it pulled it off nicely. I haven't seen the Joe film, but I saw Shanley's "Doubt," and that had a disappointing third act.

Like I said, I think the Moonstruck film had a fine third act, but I even if it hadn't I would have come away with a good impression. Good setups are hard to write, and the best ones are a work of art all by themselves.

What bugged you about the Kitchen scene?

RooniMan said...

So sweet.

Gordon said...

Eddie... thanks for that! I've always liked Vicki Carr's voice although this song is incredibly overwrought -- the woman in the song is almost (maybe not almost) certifiable... it was even at that level at the time. However I enjoyed seeing it again. I, too, liked Moonstruck. Joe vs the Volcano was an interesting movie -- if you haven't seen it you should. Doubt however, I thought was horrible on every level I can think of except one -- the performance of the black kid's mother. That actress was amazing. Everyone and everything else was "feh".

Pete Emslie said...

It's a pleasant surprise to see Vikki Carr on your site today, as Vikki is one of my all-time favourite girl singers. In fact, I'd even been a member of her fan club for years. There really is such a poignancy in both "It Must Be Him" and her other major hit, "With Pen in Hand", about a woman making one more heartfelt plea for saving her marriage before her husband signs his name to the divorce papers. Frankly, in this jaded and cynical world we live in now, this type of touching performance isn't accepted anymore and I think that's a tragedy.

Personally, I hate contemporary pop/rock and yearn for the days when our popular singers were of the tuxedo and evening gown set, and capable of expressing real feelings of romance and love lost. I was fortunate enough to meet Vikki Carr in person back around 1978 or so, and she was (and is still) a lovely, warm and gracious lady. Thanks for posting this performance by Vikki, Eddie, especially since today is coincidentally my birthday. :) said...

Maybe drop PS and try Gimp? It's always done right by me.

Eddie Fitzgerald said...

Cat Lady: I hate to say it, but i'm beginning to like Photoshop, in spite of what I said in the article. It's a lumbering, wet, shaggy dog of a program, but there's something appealing about it.

Thanks for the tip about GIMP. I'll watch a couple of tutorials so i can get a sense of it.

Pete: Happy Birthday, man! I listened to "Pen in Hand" and it was a pretty moving song. Thanks for the tip!