Sunday, November 6, 2011

Blogging and Bragging about Kids

I feel that I have to blog just to keep up to date with it.  Not a lot is going on.  Well actually a lot is going on but nothing really blog worthy.

Doug has been working.  He is working for our son-in-law Mike who is in the movie industry.  I explain his business that way because it's rather difficult to explain what it is he does if you don't know the industry.  About fourteen years ago when our daughter Nicole and Mike were living in our basement suite, Mike was an apprentice grip.

Mike and Nicole
A grip is the person(s) on a movie set who look after most of the  wiring, rigging etc.  In the credits of a movie you will see "grip" that was Mike.  While Mike was doing that he "pinched" a flag.  Now - a flag is a cloth (green screen) clad square/rectangular metal frame which is used to cover something up and replace it with something else.  Suppose you were making a western and in the middle of the set there was a car that could not be moved.  Hold a big flag in front of the car and replace it with a wagon.  Get the picture.

So Mike came home with this "pinched" flag and wanted Doug to help him take it apart and figure out how to make them.  Long story short - 14 years later - he has three businesses (two here in Vancouver and one in Toronto) making these flags and just about everything else.  Another example.  We were in the shop the other day and there was this very pretty model who was being measured to a spandex suit so that they could make her a lizard.  You all saw Avatar - that's the idea.

He is very, very successful.  Our daughter Nicole runs the accounting end and Mike does the leg work.  They went from one old treadle sewing machine in our barn to having 20 employees and contracts all over the world.  He recently supplied Ang Lee who was making the movie - Life of Pi - in Taiwan.  The production company needed another small bit and rather than have it shipped, customs and paperwork, they paid to have Mike fly over with it.  Cool - 4 days in Taiwan and he got to meet Ang Lee.

So what does Doug do, well a little of this and a lot of that.  Doug is also doing lots of finishing work on the house they have in East Vancouver.  As we speak he is staining the siding for the garage.

I hope you found this interesting. We are very proud of them.


Jim and Sandie said...

Wow, very impressive. I never really knew what a grip was. Saw the title in the credits and that was it. Good blog post.

FULL-TIMERS...OCT. 17, 2009 said...

That is amazing. I didn't know there was such a thing as a "grip" who "pinched" flags. I was wondered how people get started in some these very strange careers. So glad they are both so success. You two should be very proud. Mike and Nicole should also be so proud!

Wanderin' said...

A lot of people put those movies together not just the people in front of the camera. I found it interesting!! Good for Mike. Best of luck to him for continued success and for keeping Doug busy.

~~Sue and Doug~~ said...

there are some interesting jobs out there and it sounds like your 'kids' have the market cornered on this subject!!!

Linda Sand said...

Thanks for explaining. I've often wondered what a grip is. Sounds like a cool job. Way to take something and run with it, Mike. :)

mskayndan said...

life is good when you have variety! Very interesting and at the very least not boring!You have lots of reason to be proud of them!

mskayndan said...
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