Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Four Variations on a Theme

A motion-picture logo for my film company precedes each film.  In a way it's kind of a 10-30 second 'micro-film'.  Most of the time I use an artistic moving image that has no home in any of my current projects.
The image above is a frame from a completed concept using a recently discovered 16mm industrial film and re-crafted ambient sound design riffs selected from electronic musicians A PRODUCE and Robert Rich.
Some of the readers of this blog know of the passing of A PRODUCE this past summer.  Some of the projects we were working on together continue to move forward. It really saddens me to think will not see some of these projects, but I know he was looking forward to getting his music out to an expanded audience.
I created four pre-visualizations of this logo, mostly changing the music and editing the imagery to work with the sound design. From that group I will pick the video-logo that works both artistically and one that meets some personal criteria that these logo ideas parallel efforts that are going into the feature films in development.
In this case, the video-logo will replace an outdated video-logo from the film Man Trap which was selected for this past year's Arizona International Film Festival.  The film has been going through a mastering and finishing post-production process since that screening (April 2011) and applying this fresh video-logo will mark the effort to bring Man Trap to its full artistic potential while preserving the original concept and intent that inspired the film.
As part of the process to decide which of the four variations in the video-logo to choose, I made some notes on what I felt were important considerations in the design of each logo film.  These considerations are not absolute, but each has weight and relativity in the decision.....
> Does the logo compliment (in style and impact), the film that will follow?
> Did I learn something new and/or innovate in the creation of the video?
> What artistic risk was taken in the creation of the video-logo?
> Does the piece work as a 'micro-film'?
> Does the video move the bar forward artistically in the creation of these logos?
> Will the viewer gain some insight on the structure and craft that symbolizes a Psychotropic Film?
When the final version of the logo is decided, a link will be posted to the site hosting the film.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Thursday, September 08, 2011

He Left Us Something Special...A PRODUCE (Barry Craig)

Sadly, a friend and musical collaborator on many of my films - Barry Craig (aka A PRODUCE),   passed-away unexpectedly this past Sunday.  My sympathies to Barry's wife Jane, and to his sisters and parents. 
A PRODUCE was a talented person who was prolific in creating unique and emotive music in the genre of ambient, electronic, trance and deep space music.
I will be writing more about my artistic collaborations with A PRODUCE as I collect my thoughts. 

Barry Craig - A PRODUCE

Saturday, July 02, 2011

History Without Words

A long-forgotten engineering development film from the 1960's was located. The 16mm footage records the first test of a revolutionary new gas turbine engine for use in land vehicles, being developed at that time, by Avco Lycoming; a division of the AVCO Corporation in Stratford, Connecticut. 

The engine was orignally known as the PLT25; later the AGT1500. The photo above is a frame from the film, showing a test of the AGT1500 engine being conducted in a M48 tank chasis. The AGT1500 engine has a story. I'm working on ideas to put that history on film.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Short Film Filmmakers

Arizona's Independent Filmmakers with screenings at the 2011 Arizona International Film Festival on April 6th - Tucson. Left-to-Right: Joel Lopez, Brendan Guy Murphy, Bart Santello, Trevvor Riley, and Oscar Jimenez.   For a review of  all the short films screened at the AIFF. see TucsonFilmmakerMagazineOnline

Monday, April 11, 2011

Tucson Review of Man Trap

Here's a link to a review of my film Man Trap with a music score by A PRODUCE.  Man trap was shown at the 2011 Arizona International Film Festival this past April 6th. The review was conducted by Jean Jessup for her film blog "Movie Reviews from a Spiritual Perspective"

Review Link: MAN TRAP Review

I found the review a lucid assessment of how this reviewer perceived her experience of the film. Bart

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Man Trap to Screen in Tucson April 6th

Psychotropic Films is proud to announce that Man Trap, a film about industrial landscapes, machines and the humans that tend to them, will screen Wednsday night April 6th, 2011 - 8pm - at the Screening Room, on Congress Street in Tucson as part of the 2011 Arizona International Film Festival's local short-film program.

On Man Trap - From the Filmmaker Bart Santello:  Deep inside the military-industrial complex, humans toil with technology to assist machines in birthing even more powerful devices.  These counter-intuitive symbols have detached us from our natural world.  Yet machines have become our children and technology our new nature.  Our obsession with technology has evolved the industrial landscape - the ‘man trap’.   Profoundly, each day, we enter the “man trap” to tend to the machines of our creation.”  

"Man Trap" was created from the conscious intention to visually exhibit a factory environment through a series of industrial portraits.  The photographic method intended to artistically capture a hidden visual aesthetic - with images derived from a seemingly an uninspired mechanized landscape.

As machines and technology become more embedded in the conduct of our lives, we have to channel more and more of our time and energy into developing and maintaining these complex machines.

Today, we are making a conscious choice to abandon nature and embrace technology as our source of life. Now in the 21st century it has become apparent that we are engaged in a symbiotic relationship with machines; one of co-evolution and perceived survival.

However, in this seemingly counter-intuitive relationship, humans obsessed with technology have become marginalized. At the same time, machines work tirelessly to build more and more powerful devices.

Integral to delivering the emotional impact of the film is a haunting psycho-active soundscape "You Send Me The Message" by electronic -trance electronic musicians 'A Produce' and 'M. Griffin', from the album "Altara".  (

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Sent into Another World

I was thinking today whether 20,000 years is a short time or a long time to go from stone tools to the ability to travel to another planet......? 
The subject of my current film project: (Valentina Tereshkova) doesn't deal with the answer; just the question. The question of a human's relationship with its machines and the impact of technology on the human spirit. Cosmonauts traveled in the machines of their time. As technology replaces nature as our source of life, I think about 20,000 years ago.  Now we have trained atoms to run our planet. The brain hasn't changed much in 100,000 years. But life is different now.  Where are we; and how will this transition to technology change us?   I want this film to explore those ideas.