Monday, June 19, 2006

Maui Film Festival - given the boot for being discovered with a camera taking a photo of hula dancers


••••••••••• Sunday, June 18, 2006 9:33:47 PM Pacific/Honolulu •••••••••••

I was always one to test the fates. I got kicked out of the Celestial Cinema tonight because I was making photographs after it was announced, no pictures to be taken. My creativity got the better of me. I was stoned and made a poor judgment call when, after I awoke from the agony in my body, the spotlightted hula dancers were irrestibly beautiful. I wanted to capture the rim-light around their bodies cast by the spot light, with the audience (in pretty much total darkness) behind the dancers. OOOOps!

I saw someone coming toward me as I held the camera to the ground on an exposed tree root for a solid surface and held the shutter down for the 5th time, trying to capture something? At the gate, everyone was searched and told not to bring in camera phones, or video cameras. I wanted to capture the beauty of the setting with a spirit body during the evening and thought if I could get the camera in, there might be a model and opportunity over one of the fairway hills.

Two of my friends (one of whom gave me the tickets to the show) warned me not to bring my cellphone in as they would be collecting those with photographic ability. When I got to the security check point, I had already put my cellphone in the car and came back with my pack which had my still camera in it. I was never directly asked if I had a camera. I was even frisked with a wand and let through as the first of two security people turned the other way as I was passing. He never questioned me directly about cameras. The second just wand'ed me around my middle. When he got to my left pocket it went off (Perhaps discovering the knapsack over my shoulder and hidden by my jacket in the same hand. He patted my pocket when it rang out (right below the camera in the knapsack) and let me go in. That someone could be locked up for carrying a camera to a movie is absurd! What has our world come to? I can understand why of course. When designing Creativity Cafe, I made sure our showrooms were protected by infra-red spotlights that would flood the sensor chip of any commercial camera rendering it useless.

I had figured if I was asked if I had a camera I would have had to say yes, but I wasn't directly asked. The sunsets have been great from the Golf Course and I wanted to do more spirit body stuff not thinking that I would be challenged. wrong! It was a cloudy night. I was in torment with my back so I put out my sleeping bag and lay down - not giving a second thought about taking photos - until the hula came on. It was so beautiful. Realizing I was tempting fate and dancing with danger, I went to a place behind the dancers so I could have the backs of the dancers in my photo and the crowd in the background. I took 5 long time exposures before the security guy walked up and said "What's that in your hand" II showed my still camera. He challenged me, took the camera, called for assistance and drove me to the front gate in a golf cart not saying a word. When he'd walked up and caught me, he said I was being arrested.

I had to sit there in the golf cart - until Keith was fetched to escort me to retrieve my sleeping bag and make sure I left the show. Carol, who'd given me the extra passes (so it was no big deal financially) was surprised to see me leave. I told her I had a camera and left it at that. The bottom line is that this incident becomes just another example of my creativity moving me beyond logic and control. Clearly my conditioning as a child, forbidden to do what my spirit's guidance to do what felt right to me (being curious, listening to my inner directives and senses about things). This resistance to control - about authority preventing my creative expression is I think what was behind this rebellion and why it came up. Another
point against me for those who are counting.

I am reminded of a similar incident at little beach recently. Myself and three others came out of the park after the 9pm closing. We had been singing and in fact it was the night I took that great photo of the couple in the moon light. We were the last cars out twenty minutes late, and the police challenged us: "you are here past curfew, you are being arrested and we are locking you up!" We were in shock. He mock'd a call to get headquarters to send for the patty wagon. Eventually the cop let us go.

At the festival, they called Keith (yes, it was a bit embarrassing as it's the second time my creativity got me in trouble at the Festival). I didn't have ill intent so I wasn't feeling guilty. Keith kept telling me to just listen as the security guy insisted my still camera takes video. Excuse me but it doesn't, yes it does the officer insisted. No it doesn't I repeated going on record. He might have let me back in to see the show as the Festival folks suggested they just check it. But he was determined to punish me because i would not let his accusation of having a video camera pass without contest.

Here is what I think is going on. I was thinking about how when i was growing up - being Mr creative in a world of normalized tv watchers, there would be times I would never follow my controlling parents' insistence to do things their way, in their world. I was born to be different. I am different. Confining my creativity when it is not a threat to anyone, and in fact is the breath of my life as well as the unfolding force of god incarnate - is contra indicated if we truly want change in this world. That is why people fear creative people. They are the harbingers of death to the old regime.

When I feel the urge to create, I do it... I have paid my price for that privilege. The incessant pain that keeps me needing to lay down and stay medicated is both a blessing and a curse. This I have come to know (but not yet figured out how to profit from). Now that Creativity Cafe has been crushed by the forces of nature--for now) I am free to pursue my healing of body, mind and heart.

I dance from computer to camera to guitar to live event production to music recording, etc. on and on. So when someone wants to take away my creative tool, my instrument that really is no threat to anyone... like the flute playing that got me in trouble at the festival a few years ago... i was just feeling so good in the festival atmosphere that is so much a part of my world, that I love so much I was sharing my gifts like a flower shares it scent. It can't help itself, it was made to blossom and so am I. Its just that I have been born into a world of enforced restrictions to doing what comes naturally... whether same sex couples getting married, or a photographer being inspired to record a meaningful image from his life experience... These things do not hurt anyone, and yet they are against the law. How can you respect laws created to protect power and insure unfair competition in business.