The Colored Hospital by Terrance Daye

We met him at a sparsely attended talk we gave at Morehouse during the run of the first season of SMOKE and MIRRORS. He was a wide eyed and attentive freshman. Afterwards, he walked up and we chatted a bit. I gave him my email address and didn't think much more about it.  A short while later he sent a " Nice to meet you " email, I politely responded and filed it away. Fast forward over a year and we're in preproduction for season two. I'm emailing scripts to actors and accidentally send them to Terrance. He graciously responds and tells me he'd love assist or at least visit the set. I was embarrassed but took it as a sign and indeed it was.  Terrance was one of the best assistants I've ever had and I was immediately in love with him (as was my crew and they are a tough crowd) .

At dinner one night while we were shooting #DecisionsWhileImpaired, Artemus and I talked with Terrance about what he wanted to do after graduation and joked that maybe he'd come work for Christmas in July 1982 and we'd produce his movies.

Though Terrance isn't quite ready to run full speed with us (he starts grad school in the Fall), he graduated last weekend and it's with pleasure that we call THE COLORED HOSPITAL, written, directed, and edited by Terrance Daye CHRISTMAS IN JULY 1982 production. 

click image below to watch

"Decisions While Impaired" premiere

The process of commandeering and eating a meal with your significant other should always be a relaxing, enjoyable, even fun process, but for whatever reason it can be such an impossible, dreaded task. With this film, we wanted to have a bit of fun capturing all the emotion wrapped up in a situation we all can relate to.  "Decisions While Impaired" in the first in a short film series we are working on, stay tuned and enjoy the film!

ATL Nights and Art

This past saturday I was a part of the launch of a wonderful event put together by Jamaal McKnight of Studio 94. The event was called #bestfootforward; providing another platform for creatives and artists to not only showcase their talents, but link with others in a nice comfortable environment. I'll tell you this much, when you make self-serve alcohol and Red Velvet cupcakes a part of the menu, folks will get comfy real quick! Will Mitchell, who is a local muralist said to me the get together had a totally different feel to it, "kinda like being in Boston or something". I haven't spent much time in Boston, but I can agree that it def had a very welcomed, mellow and unique vibe to the schindiggery. Being around the brick and architecture of the Fairlie-Poplar district had a lot to do with it for sure.

I exhibited a few pieces from my "US" photo series, I kinda forgot to take photos of the uhhhh photos, but that just means you need to come out and see them in person next time. I ain't frame them joints up all purty for you to just look at em online! Modou Jallow also put up work from his photo series he shot in Nicaragua and Debbi Snax had a fye ass chalk mural up to serve as the backdrop for performances and such. Oh yeah, we projected our new film "If You Know the Words, Feel Free on a building! It was lovely night.

"If You Know The Words, Feel Free" film premiere

If you can see these words, I'm thankful you are here, we're doing something right. Although I do enjoy a good written word or two, I just kind of like talking the way I talk. So instead of a description of the film that sounds like a third person PR person wrote it, what I tell you about the film will be from what I've been trying to put in one of the books I have all over the place about my own life. Right now it's all sloppy in a spiral notebook, I've move it to a fancy leatherbound joint later!

"If You Know the Words, Feel Free is a film about life; the various ways it tests, molds and prepares us to live it. Life is something we all experience differently, but it still stands as a song we at some point, all know the words to. It doesn't matter how we know or who taught us. It doesn't matter what octave you choose to sing in, be it nice and easy or double time, a common thread is not hard to find.

This film was made for anyone who has ever had to question themselves and why they're here. Anyone who has ever wondered when things will get better and if you're as good at what you do as everyone seems to think. This film is for those who worry about dying before you find out. This film is for anyone with extreme self doubt but project equal amounts of confidence. To all those who ever wanted to speak loudly but couldn't figure out the words, hopefully this film can be the start of your outline. To all those who are not sure how much further you have to go, don't give up…ever. This film was made to spread love and create understanding of a community and a place; the human community and where you may rest. We all connect thru shared experiences. No matter where you're from, how you grew up or what you're trying to do, everyone finds out that being an adult ain't easy. There are some things you just can't prepare for or be warned about by those who've adulted before you. 

This film features a group of people, artists and creatives inhabiting Atlanta, all hoping to find and define our success and legacy, ranging from painters and graphic designers to musicians and authors. The power of the shared experience that is life and trying to live it the best way you know how is what brought together all the people who helped make this film possible. Now, on this beautiful Friday, October 16th of 2015, we invite everyone who understand this song, feel free to listen, watch and experience. Feel free to share with others. If you know the words, feel free to sing along.

-Artemus Jenkins

"If You Know The Words, Feel Free" Trailer

We're pretty excited about this film, we got a bit experimental with the style and it came out really well. Not like those experiments you hide in the corner for years until you get your life together. This film is about our lives and the lives of many others in so many ways. For now check the trailer out and stay tuned, more info on screenings and all that good stuff coming.

Film will be premiering October 16th!

Last Week...

what a lovely crowd

what a lovely crowd

...was exciting. We spent it finishing a surprise film project that screened last week during AfroPunk. "If You Know The Words Feel Free", its a stylistic change for sure that I lookforward to exploring more. It was received really well. What's it about? I'll have the trailer ready in a bit, here are some photos from the first screening though, we're planning another real soon : )

Smoke and Mirrors Season Deux: Finale

The final episode is here guys, it's been quite a journey for our characters and in real life. People are finally taking webseries more seriously and they should, this ish is hard work! Relationships are too and the series ends as the gates of Cuffing Season open up. Hopefully you all learned some do's and dont's to apply in your own lives. Either way, we are thankful for all the support from the returning fans and the new ones we made. We're looking forward to producing more content since it's clear now you all like us a lil bit. Stay tuned to what we have in store, we're honestly just getting started, thanks alot guys!

Smoke and Mirrors Season Deux: Episode 3

Things start to get pretty interesting when Kia and Laloni are in the same room, which side you on? #TeamKia or #TeamLaloni

Be sure to check out smokeandmirrors.vhx.tv so you can watch the entire series right now! Use this code "LVLESS82" to get the series at the discounted rate of $3 for this week only!

Smoke and Mirrors Screening #tbt

On July 7th, 2015 we had an event celebrating the return of Smoke and Mirrors, screening the first couple of episodes. Of course we wanted people to see what we had been working so hard on, but it really served as an opportunity to get people off their phones, from behind their computer screens and into a physical space. Webseries like Smoke and Mirrors, bring people together from all over the world with common interests and at the heart of it all, films were meant to be watched with others. Afterwards you can talk about how it made you feel, likes, dislikes and develop an experience around what you saw in the 2-3 hours you occupied the space. 

Afterwards we had a very engaging discussion about some of the themes within the series, like sexual expectations between the genders, dealing with your exes past, balancing love as a creative and a few other cool topics. It was a great night filled with great energy and we're very thankful for all the people who helped us make it happen simply by being available. Special thanks to Sean Fahie, Shannon Evans of Studio No. 7, DJ Wally Sparks, Quianah Upton, Miya Bailey, Maurice Garland, Tashiya Umoja, Savanna Keo, Spencer Charles, Zoa, Terron Phillips, Geoffery Dawson, Artie and Divine, Fred and Amber, Ashley Tweed and all you lovely folks who filled that place with your positivity.

Peep the gallery below, you might be in these somewhere : ) Photos were taken by the talented and lovely Zoa , peep more of her work here.

Smoke and Mirrors Season Deux | Episode 2

Sometimes in love, you're going to have to compromise but what happens when the thing you have to compromise is your status? See how Dixon handles a little roll reversal.

Be sure to check out Episode 1 as well and if you'd like to go ahead and see all the episodes visit smokeandmirrors.vhx.tv

 

Smoke and Mirrors Season Deux: Episode 1

Season Deux has arrived, hope we didn't keep you waiting to long. We pick where we left off, with Dixon still figuring out how to get a handle on things and needing every bit of support he can get from a familiar face. It will be a fun and exciting season over the coming weeks and of course you can keep up with the latest here, but if you want to skip ahead and see the season unfold on your time $5 will get you the entire season right here in addition to more exclusive clips and content from what has been our finest work to date.

If you haven't signed up for our email list please do, we will be posting updates weekly about the series and if you just cant wait to see what's next visit smokeandmirrors.vhx.tv

Thanks for the support!

#TBT: On Set

We would all be very lucky to have people in our lives who can smile like this over the simplest things...

I can't say I expected anybody to be as happy as KarynRose was when I told her we had a slate this go round, but it happened as you can see. I honestly think it was a bit of a morale booster in the less fun times of shooting. 

We are officially a week and some change from the season 2 premiere of Smoke and Mirrors so I figured it would be appropriate to share a few photos I was able to grab between shooting, acting and internally being a bit of a nutcase trying to balance it all out. As terrible as that may sound, it’s always fun and there isn’t anything I would rather be doing…guess that makes me a crazy person *kanye shrug*

Be sure to peep the trailer and PREORDER the entire series HERE.


July 15th!

Smoke and Mirror's officially drops July 15th and this time around you can watch all the episodes right when you good ready. Visit our VHX  and pre-order now for $5, with access to this site you can watch all the episodes, behind the scenes, outtakes and more. Thanks for the support, enjoy the official trailer!

Smoke and Mirrors is back guise!

Welp, it's taken quite a bit of doing and stressing but such is the nature of creating art. We've seen the youtube comments, IG posts, what to watch lists and so on and we appreciate the hell out of it all. Aside from the fact we had more story to tell and we love what we do, one of the determining factors in us deciding to give this a go one mo gin has genuinely been the response we get from people in real life. Let me tell it, don't nobody really know what I'm doing or making; we see the views and comments, but I don't go outside expecting people to actually talk to me about it. But, that's what I get for thinking.

Smoke and Mirrors really became something that made me realize the power of shared experiences when people in real life, in the street, from state to state would randomly come up and do things exactly like in the video above. This is not a dramatization, people kinda sorta be recognizing me and it started out kinda weird. However, once it kept happening, it became easier to get good feedback from people in realtime and truly understand the impact of what we do. It was never a thought in my mind when we created the series, but it is a very nice side effect. I'm not at all concerned about being any type of internet famous just to be seen, the thing I like the most about people's willingness to share their experiences and what they took from the series is the creation of dialogue and expanding people's view on life. THAT is one of the main reasons we do what we do and we want to keep doing that.

So yeah, here is the first piece in what will be a nice summer of content from the folks over at Christmas in July 1982. We appreciate your support for our work and are gonna keep fighting the good fight, being dope and such. Stay tuned guise, peace.

Bird Brains

Bird Brains

“Friends, bow wowmp, wowmp, wa wowmp, womp how many of us have them…” that’s how I imagine those sounds in the beat would be spelled out, don’t judge me. Seriously tho, how many of us really do? I’m a definite believer in the birds of a feather flock together ideology. Not so much from the standpoint of, if you see a group of 5 guys on the block, all dressed in a very traptastic way, you just assume they all sell drugs, but more from the standpoint of how people think. You see birds are simple; peacocks won’t kick it with pigeons and eagles ain’t fuckin with either one of them. Human’s have a bit more choice in the matter, hopefully you’ve ceased associating with people just because ya’ll both really like Tru Religion Jeans and really began wondering if how your mind works, coincides with the people you give your quality time to.

For example, sometimes or most of the time when we see a celebrity or public figure constantly making bad decisions, their circle of influence comes into question because there has to be a few people who can talk some logic into this nincompoop right? Why is this person so hell bent on repeating the sins of the past when there must be people possessing a sliver of sense around? Well it’s no different with your own friends and in the case of Smoke and Mirror’s Dixon and his friends. Phil and Geof didn’t want to see Dixon suffer through this breakup, so they offer their takes, more than once, on very similar behaviors Dixon repeats with nothing positive to show for it.  Now by no means was he obligated to follow all of the advice because his friends also have things to figure out, but at what point do you acknowledge your serial committment of fuckery and try a different method? Especially when you keep hearing “You might be going about this the wrong way” fifty-leven times. On the flip side, as the surprisingly insightful friend and advice giver, when do you just toss your hands up and say “You know what I love yo stupid ass, but you stupid sometimes and you don’t listen, figure it out your damn self and hopefully come back smarter…still love you tho!”

I’m not sure if there is a season for conversations such as these, but I’m pretty certain many of them are happening right now. After all, Valentines Day has passed, spring is coming up, some of you dipped into the recycling bin for V-Day and remembered why that one person was so cool, but the thought of why ya’ll stopped fucking with each other in the first place currently escapes you. Possibly because ya’ll are too busy ravaging each other with “Papi Pacify” playing in the background and pizza on the way, but that’s yo business. You know who does remember why you broke up tho? Your friends, the people who you share something in common with, although hindsight doesn’t appear to be one of them and because you have some sense, you don’t plan on telling them about this because you’re more interested in pleasure not side eyes.

What old habits are you trying to break free of? Do you have a support system that is interested in getting you to that level of understanding that doesn’t involve making the same mistakes twice? Are the birds you flock with capable of helping you fly higher? I want to hear from you down below in the comments section, stay tuned!