Lights, Camera, Action!

Olympus Pen Camera

This is a little doodlewash of another object I love, my Olympus Pen E-P5 digital camera. My first blogging days were as a photoblogger, so photography has always been something I’ve enjoyed. I sketched it so ridiculously fast that I got a little lost in the circles and the perspective is wonky, but it’s still rather camera-like. This is why I need to practice my close-ups!

I never really became an amazing photographer and I think it was mostly because there are too many technical aspects to it. Though I could get my head around the composition, I didn’t have the patience for all the various F-stops and aperture settings and post-production wasn’t something I enjoyed.

Thinking I wanted to try again last year, Philippe let me get this little semi-pro camera just prior to another adventure I was starting. I was an Executive Producer on a Hallmark movie called, Northpole, and was heading off to Canada for the shoot in Montréal, Québec. And it seemed like as good excuse as any to invest in a pricey new camera.

Since the movie story was about visiting the actual city where Santa lives, we were specifically shooting during a time when Montréal was covered in ridiculous amounts of snow. It was so incredibly cold that I started stumbling at the end of the first day because I could no longer feel my feet, apparently a requirement for walking.

Philippe and I went up the weekend before my portion of the shoot, since he hadn’t been to Canada before. On the Sunday of our weekend together, we were told by another producer that we could stop by that day’s shoot. The director was Douglas Barr, which I thought was awesome since he was Howie from The Fall Guy, a show with Lee Majors that I always watched with my dad.

While I was at the shoot, I was discussing final preparations with the costume designer and art director when Doug came up to say hello. He moved to the side and had brought over our lead actress, Tiffany Thiesen (formerly Tiffani Amber Thiessen of Saved by the Bell and 90210 fame). She was friendly and lovely, but I hadn’t really watched those shows much so I didn’t have the same fan boy reaction. Philippe, however, had seen those shows and was ecstatic to be meeting her! (yay! The price of that camera will now be forgotten!)

Philippe was flying out the next afternoon, as I would be staying the week for the shoot, and we had planned to have a lovely breakfast together before he left. That evening I got a call from another producer who asked if I could meet Santa and Mrs. Claus for their fitting very early the next morning. So I told Philippe that there was a change of plans. He would now be meeting the Clauses, which honestly, how many people could say they’ve done that?

Okay, in reality we spent the morning watching old Hollywood royalty, Robert Wagner and his wife Jill St. John, try on wigs and clothes. But it’s still not something you get to do every day. Philippe, however, was exhausted and more than happy to be heading back home to Phineas. I then spent the week freezing my butt off during all night shoots, realizing any of the glamour of movies is reserved solely for the actors on the red carpet.

When I finally made it back home, I discovered a small dent on the top of my precious new camera. I was initially upset, but the stories that little dent evoked were well worth it. I’d spent over a week in Santa’s magical city of Northpole, freezing my jingle bells off sure, but also surrounded by Christmas lights, elves and reindeer. Another memory to add to my cabinet of curiosities, and a life experience I will not soon forget.

Recommended3 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
  1. artandmoondreams 7 years ago

    Great story, love your sketch…giggling about freezing jingle bells. ;D

  2. Carol King 7 years ago

    Great story. Love the drawing of the camera. I never mind if something is a little wonky. It gives it personality. And a sense of the artist.

  3. Kit Schuetze 7 years ago

    I’ve seen that movie :>) Love the camera and the wonk.

  4. Sharon Mann 7 years ago

    Love the story, I’ve seen the movie several times. Your camera sketch is fabulous!

  5. Teresa Robeson 7 years ago

    I didn’t know about your glamorous past! You are a man of many faces (though lacking jingle bells since those froze off…or did you get them surgically re-attached?). 😀 Your camera doodle is fabulous! I wish I could tell stories like you!

  6. Jill Holmes 7 years ago

    Love the camera–and I love mine, too, incidentally. And I’ve had the same issues with not really wanting to commit to getting all the speed/f-stops, et al, right and perfect. I still love to point and shoot, however, and I’m sure I will do it often until I am no longer strong enough to hold up a camera. Thanks for letting me know you don’t HAVE to know everything about photography to be happy with your work and your use of it in your life. 🙂

    • Author

      You’re quite welcome, Jill! I think all art is just a matter of enjoying the moment and the making! Too much pressure on technique sucks the fun out of it! 😉

  7. Margaret Hunt 7 years ago

    Ok now you are a name dropper…Hallmark lol…and I think I have seen that movie too…Love the camera…they are a pain to draw…at least you got a good story for your dent…dropped my camera on a tile floor at the art story on King St in Charleston…end of that camera!!

    • Author

      Lol…yeah…dropping names. Hehe…and cool you’ve seen the movie Maggie! Sorry about the camera though…oh no! I don’t think I would have had the “fond memories” if mine had exploded on the floor. 😥hehe

      • Margaret Hunt 7 years ago

        And I really liked that camera an old top of the line digital Kodak. Bet we will watch that movie again. My sis who lives with me LOVES any hallmark movie and when it’s Christmas time we both binge on them.

        • Author

          Awesome!! That’s so cool! There’s a sequel coming out to this one later this year, so you’ll need to tune in and watch Northpole: Open for Christmas! 😉👍🏻

          • Margaret Hunt 7 years ago

            So does that mean you got to freeze to death again?!

          • Author

            Nope…I left Hallmark to move to new adventures just before the shoot started. So I only worked on the script and pre-production which is a MUCH job! Lol

      • Margaret Hunt 7 years ago

        Ps my sister will be impressed when I tell her I know somebody who produced a hallmark film. 😊

  8. kirkistan 7 years ago

    I’m crazy about the sketch.And great story. You are a story machine, mister.

  9. Kari 7 years ago

    What a great story! My youngest was reading along with me.. She recognized the names of the actors but not from past shows.. Tiffany Thiesson from White Color and Robert Wagner from NCIS.. Lol. Your camera is fabulous! The details are amazing!

    • Author

      Lol…funny how different the generations are, huh? 😉 That’s awesome Kari!! Glad you like the camera…I’m still trying to figure out details in closeups. You can get away with more in large scenes. Hehe 😊

  10. memadtwo 7 years ago

    I agree with Kirk. “The Doodlewash Chronicles”…I can see it on Amazon now! (K.)

    • Author

      Hehe… thanks Kerfe! ❤️😃 It would certainly be an odd little book…random illustrations and stories about whatever came to mind. 😊Not sure anyone would buy it! Lol

      • memadtwo 7 years ago

        You might be surprised! Or perhaps given current interests, a coloring book…?

        • Author

          Thought about that, but the market seems really flooded now! Hehe…I’m sure the right Doodlewash product will emerge at some point! 😊

  11. Omg what Kerfe said! Wow, you’ve got some amazing stories to tell, Charlie! Looking forward to mooooooore! Ho ho ho!! :)))) And great sketch!

    • Author

      Thanks Laura!! 💜💜💜😃Glad you liked it…this was a fun experience and there were too many stories to tell about this one. Might add another or two from the movie this Christmas. Hehe Glad you liked my wonky doodlewash!! 🙂

  12. Sand Salt Moon 7 years ago

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, ah … Charlie? Can you make me a star???? LOL! I love learning more about you.

    • Author

      Awww Cynthia, you’re already a star!!! 🌟 Someone obviously got to you first! Hehe And my IMDB is pretty short and pathetic! Lol 😊😊 Hehe…glad you liked the story!

  13. Jodi 7 years ago

    Oh Mr. Executive Producer! You have so many talents, so many awesome stories – and I ADORE this camera!!! A little wonky is what is makes it so specially Charlie-Oy! I wish I could draw like that – yeeesh!

    • Author

      Hehe… I have had a lot of adventures!! 😊 Thanks Jodi! ❤️😃 Glad ya like the camera! And you can totally draw like this…grab a pen and just get wonky!!! 😉

  14. Jacob 7 years ago

    These are such a fun way of finding out little tidbits about you Charlie! There’s a story not everyone can tell, for sure.

    Lovely drawing. Cameras are great objects to draw, I think – not entirely sure what it is about them, but they are. I can’t use one to save my life, though! I try to avoid them at all costs.

    • Author

      Thanks Jacob!! 😃 I never really mastered using them…and probably should practice drawing them more. Lol But it’s fun to see what memories come to mind when I sketch something. I have no idea what I’m about to reveal next! Haha 😊

  15. […] finally ended up getting married during the weekend of my movie premier in California last year. I remember Tiffani Theissen telling us, “You just got […]

  16. Nancy 7 years ago

    So I was over at the Lego post and I bopped over here to see what the whole movie thing was about. You, my friend are a man of many hats! Sounds like an amazing (yet chilly) adventure. I would have been pretty pumped to see Robert Wagner. I always thought he was pretty suave!

    • Author

      He was!! 😉 hehe… Really nice guy! It was a really fun thing to do! New adventures ahead!! Thanks for bopping by! ❤️

  17. amaryllislog 7 years ago

    Such a wonderful story and great connection to your fabulous camera! Oh cold weather, how I dread you.

  18. […] I would end up working on a movie later in life, I never fully realized my childhood dreams. Perhaps that’s why I bought an expensive antique […]

  19. akashprabha 7 years ago

    i like so much of this one. so please continue this type of stories…

    and i congratulate to you..

    • Author

      Awww…thanks friend for the lovely encouragement! I sincerely appreciate that! Thanks so much for reading! 😊😃😃

  20. […] acquired a couple of years ago that appears at the end of the movie I worked on called Northpole, during my brief stint as an Executive Producer. It looks like a miniature dynamite blasting machine, only festively red with a candy cane […]

  21. […] walk on Santa Monica beach in Los Angeles while attending a meeting back when I was working on a Hallmark movie called Northpole. This actually happened by accident as I hit the “Home” button on the rental […]

  22. […] It made me want to grow up to be a movie director. That never happened, of course, though I did get to be a movie producer once and that was pretty […]

  23. Delores Azary 5 years ago

    What a wonderful experience! If that little dent in your camera could talk, it would recall the wonderful time it had! Thanks for sharing with us!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 5 years ago

      Aww thanks, Delores! 😃💕 I was so mad about that dent when it happened, but then realized it was just another piece of a beautiful memory!

      • Delores Azary 5 years ago

        I would have felt the same way. I started using a Hobonichi which is Japanese, I learned they believe that things like this are just part of the story and not to get upset about things that happen, like the dent. It would be hard to not get upset, but you have the right thought about it being another piece of a beautiful memory! No other camera has that story to tell.

  24. Teri Casper 5 years ago

    Fascinating and wonderful story!

  25. […] contraption, that appeared in the Hallmark movie I helped produce called Northpole. That was such a fun experience, and brings back lovely memories. Getting to work on holiday products at Hallmark for years was […]

  26. […] of my life has been spent trying, failing, and often succeeding at things that I had no business doing in the first place. It strikes me that we live in a culture that often favors experience over drive. Even if […]

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