Quote of the Day #15 – Academics, Creativity and Werner Herzog

I have nothing against trivia, but don’t really enjoy it. Namely for the fact that it usually makes me feel quite stupid. All the crazy questions they throw at you, I have no idea how ANYONE knows the answers sometimes.

I went to trivia last night. It wasn’t planned. I just tagged along as my boyfriend was hosting that night and he promised me Cow and Moon ice cream afterwards.
So I sat down as a team of one and attempted to keep my head afloat against the trivia addicts.


526601_528036447235498_272584354_n“What is usually excreted from a sudoriferous?”
I shrug. I have no idea.
“The answer is sweat

Trivia can be harsh on me (Or rather I am harsh on myself at Trivia).
What I DID do well was make an al-foil sculpture of a movie monster. Yay me.
I won 1st place for my sculpture of Mike Wazowski from Monsters Inc. Which gave me bonus points that didn’t really help me much on the scoring front. At least I did well in the creative field otherwise the evening would have been a bummer.

One thing I have always been able to fall back on is my creativity and imagination. I realised at a pretty young age that whatever I did in life was going to have to somehow encapsulate some kind of creative element for me to thrive in or I would die of boredom. It took me a while until I realised I wanted to be a filmmaker. In fact even though I am quite a creative and artsy person, I am also very … trying to think of the word…. analytical. So much so that when deciding whether I wanted to be in the film industry, I sat down and wrote a list of pros and cons and compared them against a similar list for Interior decorating. I eventually gave up on the list making and decided on filmmaking purely because it meant I could have the most control and overall it was so exciting to me.

Christian Bale and Werner Herzog Rescue Dawn

I stumbled upon three quotes today by Werner Herzog that made me feel that perhaps, list or no list, I had chosen the right career for myself. Here’s the first.

Werner Herzog is a german filmmaker and known as a great director of New German Cinema. Herzog received international recognition for his films Grizzly Man and Rescue Dawn starring Christian Bale.

“Academia is the death of cinema. It is the very opposite of passion. Film is not the art of scholars, but of illiterates.” 
― Werner Herzog

Think outside the boxI don’t think that the film industry is just made up of all the people who can’t play trivia or write a book, but I do agree that passion is key.

What I think Herzog is trying to say here, is that regardless of all the templates, classes, formulas and books teaching filmmaking, at the end of the day it can all go out the window provided you are passionate about your idea. If you follow step-by-step guides and try to make/write/direct your film logically, then you aren’t pushing yourself to be expressive and still run every risk of your film not being a success (let alone being the same as every other film that followed the same formula).
Most people who have chosen to get into film, I imagine, did it because they were excited about the endless opportunities and ways they could tell stories. So why should you tell a story the same as someone who did it 20 years ago?

The second Herzog quote is along this line of thought.

“Coincidences always happen if you keep your mind open, while storyboards remain the instruments of cowards who do not trust in their own imagination and who are slaves of a matrix… If you get used to planning your shots based solely on aesthetics, you are never that far from kitsch.”
~ Werner Herzog

I feel like today the world-wide web (and Werner Herzog) have been trying to tell me to think outside the square and to have confidence in myself and my ideas. What’s the point if you don’t even have that? Stop playing safe and actually be creative. And on top of that, believe in your heart and guts in your ideas.

Without passion, hard-core determination and a strong belief in themselves people wouldn’t endure all the difficulties that come with the creative industries. Film making is such a tough industry. It is a small industry which takes time to get into. You have to work hard and suffer through many rejections, poverty, other filmmakers success, dry spells and your own mind. As well as all that because you are fighting to keep your mind open to inspiration and pushing for people to fall in love with something that you created.

Werner Herzog

Herzogs final quote for today says just this;

Again, pushing the passion that is within artists. It is clear that Herzog firmly believes that filmmaking takes a strong independent character filled with passion. If you don’t have passion then you are never going to break through all the obstacles to get to where you want to go and your films could lack spark.

“Everyone who makes films has to be an athlete to a certain degree because cinema does not come from abstract academic thinking; it comes from your knees and thighs.”
~ Werner Herzog

Perhaps my list making wasn’t exactly showing a sense of passion. But at least I threw the list out the window and went with what my guts were telling me. Me and my guts are going to have a very long and strong relationship in the future.

Ehran EdwardsIf you liked this post please ‘LIKE’ my Facebook page and ‘FOLLOW’ my blog. I keep them up to date with; projects I’m involved in, reviews & tutorials and share interesting tid-bits to make you smile.

“With my head in the stars, a twinkle in my eye and a love for cinema and nostalgia, filmmaking is a fun, creative way to express myself.” 


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