Boston: My ‘Hometown Glory’

As I near the end of my third year at Boston University, I can firmly say that Boston has become more of a home for me than I ever thought it would. The history, the contemporary, the scenery, the lack of a street grid system, the T, the Pru, the food, the food, the food, and the people…all of it is quite a large percentage of what’s made my first 3 years in college the most incredible unexpected experience.

And then, one fine Boston Marathon day, my beautiful city went up in smoke – literally.

I could waste the rest of this post talking about the bombing and the terrorists. But I don’t want to give them attention. Instead, I present a tribute to my favorite city in the entire world. Boston. Forever beautiful. Forever strong.

In other words, Boston’s the hometown glory I never expected to find.

Take it away, Adele.

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Raising the “Banner” Against Bullying

2012’s spring break brought me an interesting idea for a music video. I hadn’t made one since September of the previous year, so it had been a while since I’d done something completely creative without restrictions.

There had been a bunch of reports of suicide from bullying, and just bullying in general, and I found a goldmine of inspiration in that. Someone can always tell you to be your own person, but that isn’t enough. You have to stand up for yourself. Not take shit from anyone for who you are or what you are, in the case of aliens.

LIGHTS’s newest single “Banner” allowed me to visually illustrate that idea. The idea of being lost in a forest of evil, and just realizing that all you can be is human, was the foundation of this video – one of my definite favorites to date.

I had a lot of fun filming and editing this one.

Raise your banner. Hold it high.

Video: LIGHTS – Banner

Date Uploaded: March 14, 2012

Note: The video is blocked in Germany. My apologies fellow Germans. Not that I have anyone from Germany reading my website…at all. Just throwing it out there.

Shameless Promotion: My Own Video Reel

After all the past work I’ve done over the years, I figured it was high time I created a video reel or promo to display as the main footage on my YouTube channel to introduce people who happened across my work to everything I’ve done so far.

Not a bad first attempt. Certainly makes me seem way cooler than I actually am.

Video: Chris Roys (Promo)

Date Uploaded: December 7, 2011

“Some Boys” Shouldn’t Win: A Death Cab For Cutie Video

When Death Cab For Cutie’s newest album Codes and Keys arrived at the end of May 2011, one track instantly embedded itself in my mind’s playlist. Obviously that track, from the title of this post, was “Some Boys.”

Up until this point, I had made music videos for the emotions and artistic visuals I could bring out of the music. This time, I wanted to tackle an actual issue in modern society. Death Cab’s song spoke of boys who pretty much just suck in relationships. What better way to portray that then to illustrate boys who can’t even handle the person they’re in the relationship with?

i.e. abuse.

I broke out of my shell with this one, even enlisting another actress to help me out, one of my lovely best friends: Emily Ross. I basically just told her I was going to fake abuse her, and she was an absolute star about it. We had a lot of laughs fighting with each other.

The real question is, who won the fight? Watch and find out.

Video: Death Cab For Cutie – Some Boys (Music Video)

Date Uploaded: June 13, 2011

STOP SMOKING ALREADY…But Really: a PSA

My first semester at Boston University involved a mandatory communications class called COM101. One assignment we had was to show how a wordless argument conveys its message without using words. You could choose an advertisement or some sort of vehicle for the assignment, but I decided to create my own video for it.

I noticed that many more people smoke in cities than back home…so I focused on creating a PSA about second-hand smoking, using one of my roommates and another friend, Kendall.

It’s nothing special, but I love good dramatic nonsense. This is that nonsense.

Nonsense that got me an A! (Sorry, that was very conceited of me.)

Video: Second-Hand Smoking PSA

Date Uploaded: October 2, 2010

Note: The video is blocked in Germany. My apologies fellow Germans. Not that I have anyone from Germany reading my website…at all. Just throwing it out there.

The Mountain’s Summit: Applying to NYU Tisch

New York City + filmmaking = gold. Gold = New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.

There’s absolutely no question about it: NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts holds the best film program on the east coast. Nothing else to say about that. It’s the truth, because no other east coast school allows for such hands on learning from the start. The school was my goal when I started looking at colleges in 2008. It was the first one I’d ever been interested in.

The application for Tisch involves a creative portfolio, including a dramatic essay, a creative resume, and a submission of a short film less than 10 minutes long. This was the school I wanted to go to more than anything. The chance to live in the Big Apple wouldn’t ever come so easily to me ever again. Now or never.

That meant I had to go all out with everything I had learned from teaching myself Sony Vegas, the non-linear editing program I use. My main interest lay in television, so I focused on creating a pilot, if you will, for a television show. Up until this point in my career, I hadn’t ever really used other actors besides my family and myself in my videos because I just didn’t trust other people to understand the vision I was going for. To this day, I still have a hard time with it. If I do ever become a director one day, it’s going to be my biggest fault: not believing in the actors.

But this project opened my eyes to the possibilities. And I knew I couldn’t make a video for my application without using other actors. I took a leap of faith, and Spectrum was born.

The end of March came, bringing my decision with it. I was accepted. Freaking ACCEPTED.

And now you question me: “Uhhh…dude, you’re at Boston University. What gives?”

What gives? How about NYU Tisch’s $60,000 tuition? How about their highest financial aid packages only offering $9,000 in aid that’s not federal loans? Who the hell can pay for that and live after those four years?

I sound bitter. I’m not. Maybe only five percent bitter. More bitter towards private universities and their ease in sucking the money out from under people’s feet. No…on the contrary, Boston University was the best choice, in the end – money aside. I wouldn’t be in Australia right now if it weren’t for BU. I wouldn’t have the amazing friends I have. I wouldn’t be executive producing a student-run television show. I wouldn’t have the most incredible internship at ZSPACE, learning 3D animation and motion graphics, if not for BU.

This whole video application process was simply a learning experience. You don’t have to go to the best schools to get the best real-life experiences. You don’t need the best to become great at what you do.

So, NYU, thank you. Ranting over: let’s watch Spectrum.

Video: Spectrum: ACCEPTED NYU Tisch Portfolio Film

Date Uploaded: April 2, 2010

Note: The video is blocked in Germany. My apologies fellow Germans. Not that I have anyone from Germany reading my website…at all. Just throwing it out there.

A Blip of Advocacy: ‘Primeval’

This is absolutely the number one silliest thing I’ve ever done on my YouTube channel.

Primeval, a show that used to run on ITV1 in the UK, was one of my favorite shows until it was recently cancelled-but-never-officially-cancelled earlier this year (or last year…can’t remember, oops). Running for five seasons so far, it was basically about dinosaurs appearing in present time and starred an ex-S Club 7 member. Obviously that’s why I watched it.

ANYWAYS. After the third season finale, the show was abruptly cancelled for financial reasons. It was eventually brought back to life for two more seasons, but before that, I was quite the upset lil dude. They ended the show on the hugest cliffhanger ever!

So I took the show’s opening title from the third season and uploaded it to YouTube as a way to advocate for the show.

I know, I know, I’m such a martyr. A rebel.

(Hey, it did get renewed for two more seasons. Kudos to me?)

Video: Primeval – Series 3 Opening Theme / Intro

Date Uploaded: June 7, 2009