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NY Portuguese Short Film Festival 2015

 

There has been some annual festivals I’ve been involved in some way. First as a member of the audience, then as a participant and finally as a contributor. The NY Portuguese Short Film Festival (NYPSFF) is produced by Arte Institute since 2011. It brings you the “Portuguese culture to the big screen and showcase films with a unique Portuguese perspective. The NYPSFF offers a contemporary Portugal full of ideas and spirit while bridging audiences with different cultural background.” Today, the NYPSFF is still growing all over the world and you can be a part of it. Check their website for more info and to know more upcoming sessions.

The identity of London

Nine years ago I had a school trip to London. It was a big deal. We’re all teenagers and it was the first time we traveled without our parents supervision. It was a lot of fun! I loved being a tourist in London. The photos on this post are circa 2006 which I took with my first digital camera (from LIDL!). I was so fascinated by the city, I couldn’t get enough of it. I promised myself that one day I would try to make a living here… I just thought “Why not?!”

Fast forward to the present: here I am trying to make it on my own in a city that has become the European capital of (em/im)migrants (any type of migrant passes through here). That’s something unique that I couldn’t quite understand so many years ago. Basically there are many studies showing that most of Londoners are second-generation immigrants. Also this phenomenon occurs in other major cities in the U.K. because of colonization’s influence on modern-day migratory patterns.

So, now I understand why John Cleese keeps saying on interviews things like “London is no longer an English city”. I totally agree. I’m fascinated with this blending of wonderful cultures mixed together in one urban universe full of different contrasts, traditions and living patterns. Different humans, better city. It’s a multinational feeling. We’re all here, migrants who believe in a better future in a big metropolitan jungle called London.

The city pace can be harsh. It’s something that cannot been explained. Like the weather which seems too naughty to be truth. London keeps you grounded, swallows you over and spits you out on the streets. It’s a excellent training ground for other major cities around the world (which I plan to visit in the future). Living here reminds me of that “fight club” feeling… remember Edward Norton’s character? He gets punched so many times but he keeps going back to the fight club. That’s the challenge of living in London. It tests your limits and if you can survive here, you can do it all over again somewhere else. On the other side, if you find an opportunity, take it with no regrets. Stick to your goals and determination, those are the keys to succeed; and remember always: Just because something is hard, doesn’t mean you have to give up immediately.

where you can find me

I started my first blog when I was 15 years old. It was 2006 and I’ve decided to create “take 4” on the Blogger platform. At the time it seemed the more personalized option and to be honest, I had some cool layouts for my blog since then. On “take 4” I write in Portuguese about movies that I watch over the past few months (you can also choose to visualize it in english or any other language thanks to the google translator app). I also write about TV series and other content that seems interesting to me as a member of the audience. I post at least once a week. I try not to be too judgmental about what I watch or to spoil the whole experience to the reader.

take4banner

Five years later, the internet had a vocabulary of its own and with that big bang, Tumblr was a brand new blogging platform. It got my attention for the super cool designer layouts and the huge amount of images you can find randomly. Any kind of GIF, meme or random video is on Tumblr. Predominantly used by youngsters, this microblogging platform hit a big success in the social media. Mine is called “Joana’s Mood Board”. It’s a huge collage of simple things that I like, feel inspired by, texts that I’ve wrote randomly over the years, random pictures n’ videos that are part of my mood in that particular time.

joanasmoddboard

Finally, the last page I created was on WordPress. I was tired of uploading new articles on wix.com and I wanted a more accessible website that combined the projects that I’m working on as well as some episodes of everyday life, so I created this page. This is my main website.

In total: three different pages. My main website (this one), my movie blog “take 4” and my tumblr “Joana’s Mood Board” for randomness. I shall not create any more accounts online. I think with these three platforms I can express myself well enough.

how about you? how do you post online?

le bonheur en Paris

oh yes! I still remember Paris. It has been eleven years since I first visited the capital of France. I was fourteen years old and it was my first time outside of Portugal (I had been in a plane before but going to the Madeira island it’s not the same feeling). My french back in the day was good and almost fluent… at least I could order some delicious pain au chocolate.

I had previously known Paris through many different stories of Portuguese immigrants (some of them were friends of my parents). Between the 60’s/70’s there was a huge flood of Portuguese immigrants to France simply because we wanted to escape dictatorship. You can find one of those stories here.

Paris is beautiful and romantic in a simple classy way. It’s a lady of its own that mixtures 19th century feeling with the modern times of the 20th. It was the first time I’ve bought a striped blouse (just because it remembered me of Coco Channel) and also visited all the iconic monuments while wandering around the city, wanting to become a Parisian in a Godard Film. I loved the architecture and the food specially, french breakfast is my kind of meal and the patisserie is just an art form in France! I never saw such beautiful cakes and croissants.

Also during that time I went to Versailles (which blew me away), I was studying the whole history about Marie Antoinette and the context of the French revolution so it was a treat for me. I also went to Disneyland Paris just for fun, ended up getting some silly autographs from childhood characters.

In Paris I mostly explored the city center (I was staying in Montparnasse) and then I explored Vaugirard, Montrouge, Canal St Martin and Montmartre. I want to come back to Paris just to refresh my memory (it’s a shame I haven’t been back since then!). I want to walk around to rediscover my first voyage abroad and to experience more of the French New Wave.

à bientôt!

The heartbreak diet plan

I don’t usually use this platform to express these kind of private matters but I think this one is a good “sharing-experience tip”.

Once again we live through a great history of disappointments, failed relationships, foolish behavior, things we’ve all experienced in our lifetime. We know what it is: we have tons of tunes about it, we cry at romantic comedies (sometimes not the good ones) and we can read it in almost every magazine, book or newspaper. Heartbreak has always been an emotional plague.

In this special case, you may need a proper treatment. It differs from person to person, the recipe to mend a broken heart it’s our own personal cliché. In my case, I’m a massive crier. I cry with almost anything. It’s exhausting sometimes. In the last couple of years I’ve developed a survival plan that may change according to the circumstances. Truth being told the only thing that stopped me from crying anytime, anywhere was the movie genre of Quentin Tarantino. Movies + the soundtracks as well. Why? You might ask?

It combines two essential ingredients: revenge and good dialogue BAM! it works wonders! Tarantino cures my post-ex-same-old-hangover-relationship-ending. I don’t watch romantic comedies because it doesn’t console me at all. I need to watch some Samuel L. Jackson swearing, blood shedding, girls kickin’ ass to calm me down. I only got nerdy/methodical enough to get into the soundtracks because when I’m outside on-the-go, the music reminds me of the (correspondent) movie so I don’t feel like crying in the middle of the grocery shop.

I hope this helps some poor souls as well; and by all means: you should never need an excuse to watch a Quentin Tarantino movie. Whatever you’re going through, you’ll be just fine. Believe me, we’ve all been there before.

Looked dead, didn’t I? But I wasn’t. But it wasn’t from lack of trying, I can tell you that. Actually, Bill’s last bullet put me in a coma. A coma I was to lie in for four years. When I woke up, I went on what the movie advertisements refer to as a ‘roaring rampage of revenge.’ I roared. And I rampaged. And I got bloody satisfaction. I’ve killed a hell of a lot of people to get to this point, but I have only one more. The last one. The one I’m driving to right now. The only one left. And when I arrive at my destination, I am gonna kill Bill.

– The Bride (Uma Thurman) in Kill Bill: Vol. 2

jobs

When you established yourself as a creative person you’ll have daytime jobs (unless your parents are rich or you were blessed with an early carer and a fortunate dose of good luck). In the meanwhile, where you cannot find something that relates to your artistic background, you’ll get a new set of skills on a job that provides money to pay rent, patience and daydreaming.
Once a great man said “If you got a career, thank God. If you got a job, I hope you get a career one day. ‘Cuz when you got a career, there ain’t enough time in the day…when you got a career, time just flies by…when you got a job, there’s too much time.”
That man was Chris Rock on his fifth HBO comedy special: “Kill the Messenger”. His great sense of humor illustrates (struggling) artists everywhere (I do not say or consider the expression “struggling artists” because if you consider yourself an artist you’re already struggling. No matter what it is. You have a cause for your craft. There’s no point being an artist without the struggle. Simple as that.)
At the moment I’m in between jobs to guarantee my existence in London. It hasn’t been easy but to be honest, I prefer to give it a try instead of giving up (without excusing myself with arguments like: “it’s hard” or “unfulfilling”.) Just to do it. Work yourself out.

us

Today was an important date for Portugal in 1974. A revolution was made to set free a country from a harsh dictatorship. Nowadays we throwback our minds to the reason why our freedom was in cause and mostly why still have so many changes to do: not only politically but also humanly. Life is a force that can drive us through so many story-lines that sometimes is confusing to pick our conquests and to face our losses. I was pleasantly surprised with this new ad of Super Bock. This simple premise represents a whole generation who’s connected all the time but still, we tend to find ourselves alone (and kind of lost). To be free nowadays you must pay the price of keeping good friends around. Real relationships. Unconditional love. The battle starts within you: keeping safe every single soul that you nurture, caring about someone who drastically changed you, be around the ones you’ve decided to commit no matter what. Go out. Fight for it.