The crashed computer took the wind right out our sails. It could not be repaired. Apple agreed to replace it, but not before the broken machine was received at their warehouse. And that was delayed while the authorized repair shop attempted, without success, to copy the data over to a new drive. We lost a day and a night of work on the souped up computer. And the new replacement computer has only just this week been delivered to Abbott Imaging. It will take a day to set it up. Then, if this new machine does not also fail in some way, we will be back to two computers for the last week of editing.

Looking back, the crash last month was really traumatic. The final week we blocked off in our calendars for film work was suddenly wide open, but with no clarity on whether the 18 hours of data were truly lost or how long the faster computer would be missing from the editing process. Our progress slowed considerably, but it did not stop. Abbott Imaging has continued editing on the one remaining, slower computer. And once we knew what work had been lost, next steps came into clear view. In the last weeks we have also continued with other support and recovery tasks to make sure we have a great event on our new premiere date: April 25, 3 PM, Simmons Hall, MIT .

Here is the updated film poster:

I followed up with my local paper, the Arlington Advocate, in late March, and was interviewed by the same reporter who interviewed me for the April 2014 article . Ami Olson Campbell asked great questions. My answers summarized what I have been sharing through my kickstarter updates over the past year: lots of unexpected and fun details that happen when you try to do something you have never tried before, and no one else, to your knowledge, has tried before, either. I thought I was creating an exploration of my pysanky and in the process explored creating an original film. Now I’m looking forward to reading that story in the newspaper, which is scheduled for publication on April 23, 2015 and will hopefully be available on by Saturday the 25th.

At the premiere, JoeK and Erin of Abbott Imaging will join me for a Q&A after the screening and then we’ll have a reception arranged by our wonderful host at MIT, Ellen. During the reception people will have an opportunity to talk with us, but also view the stars of the movie and some of my other pysanky that are not in the film. For that purpose, I took delivery of a small display cabinet yesterday. I have assembled and tested it out.

I want the premiere to be a multidimensional experience, so my plan is to give every audience member a blown out egg to hold and feel, and at some point break, either accidentally or deliberately. 

It’s a 125-seat auditorium, and although I don’t expect a capacity turnout, I do intend to blow out about 120 eggs. I’ve done 60 so far and I found a new way to do it that doesn’t involve my own lungs: compressed gas in a can. If partially aimed at the hole on one end, the light breeze of air pushes the raw egg out the other end, much as my lungs can. When I blew the compressed gas full on into these chicken eggs, the shells cracked apart and the contents exploded out, making a slimy mess! So this, too, among all the activities connected with this project, is a delicate balancing act. 

By the time the premiere event is over I expect these eggs all to be broken. Lucky for us and in the spirit of an institution accustomed to untidy youngsters, MIT has agreed to cleaning up any stray broken shells we leave behind!

In addition to the egg breaking fun, I hope to heat some beeswax during the show. As all pysanky artists know, the lovely fragrance of melted beeswax always permeates the making of pysanky.

After the premiere I’ll be working on fulfilling the remaining kickstarter rewards. This may take a little extra time, but I expect to have everything shipped domestically by the end of May and all international rewards out by the end of June.

Also in June, Abbott Imaging is looking into having a screening and pysanky exhibition in Toronto. From there, who knows? If response to the film is good, maybe a screening in New York, San Francisco, Berlin ….? We also plan to investigate submitting the film to some festivals. The project continues! If any of you have other ideas, please leave them in the comments.