Bri Castellini: How to Kill Your Darlings – @stareable

 by Bri Castellini

I don’t care how talented a writer you are, how witty your dialog, how ingenious your story weaving- it’s almost guaranteed your scripts are several pages too long. But especially when your story is good and your dialog competent, it can be easy to convince yourself you’ve done enough and you’re ready to shoot. Think again- today we’re talking about killing your darlings.

Defined: a “darling” is an element of your story (usually at a script level, but occasionally is a particular prop or piece of wardrobe) that is disproportionately important to you than the story itself.

An example is a three-page witty dialog sequence that you love because it’s funny and clever but doesn’t actually move the story or the characters forward in any way, or a particular poster on a character’s wall that would be expensive or difficult to attain but is an inside joke amongst the cast and crew.

Defining and deciding to kill your darlings is an exercise in understanding the purpose of every moment, every character, every word, and every beat in your story, but that can be difficult. Let’s make it simple.

Do A Table Read

Because screenplays are mostly dialog, it can be easy to write off long conversations as too long because the individual lines seem short and “it’ll be faster when the actors talk.” It’s hard to actually make that call without hearing those lines aloud, though- there’s a reason even veteran showrunners still do table reads on major network shows. Even if you don’t have all the parts cast yet, get a group of actors and friends together and hear your work, and pay attention to the moments of waning interest. In theory, a table read is engaging to everyone the whole way through the same way watching a new movie is. But if you look up from the page and pay attention to the readers who aren’t speaking, you’ll notice at which points they start to zone out. The sections with the most glassed-over eyes are the ones you should reconsider.

Furthermore, if your script is comedic and you haven’t heard a chuckle in over a minute, something’s wrong.

Cut transitions, intros, and outros

What is the absolute shortest version of your story where it can still make sense and be impactful? Arthur Vincie, the creator of Three Trembling Cities 1, suggests you “cut the first 10 pages out and see if the story still makes sense. About 60% of the time it does; the other 40% usually just require some tweaks.” Obviously not every web series has 10 pages to spare (or 10 pages in an episode), but the point stands- introductions are worthy exercises in figuring out your narrative, but they aren’t always the actual best place to start the story.

In a similar sentiment, Tim Manley, writer and co-creator of The Feels 1, talked about cutting his scripts on our podcast Forget The Box as a reaction to his other co-creator Naje Lataillade explaining the various shots a particular episode will require. Tim recalls that “my brain will trigger- ‘that sounds like a long day.’ And I’ll be like, you know what? The whole scene takes place in one room. And actually I cut the beginning and I cut the end…. But what that actually does is boil it down to the most interesting part anyway. So the constraint, from my point of view, forces us to only do the parts that you really need, and in the end honors viewers time and honors everyone’s time.” And isn’t that how it should be?

Ask yourself: do you need a page of a character leaving one location and arriving at another? Are we learning anything from that, or are you worried people will get confused about where she is? Sometimes, it’s actually better to tell instead of show, if telling takes a single line of dialog and showing is two minutes of screentime.

Combine or cut characters

Alicia Carroll of Fishing explains that her “personal vice is characters. I always have too many. The challenge becomes deciphering which ones are necessary, which ones can composite together, and which ones have to cut.” Especially on a web series, more characters means more people to coordinate schedules with, more pages of dialog leading to longer shoot dates, more bodies to feed and keep comfortable on set, and just generally more variables to account for. And often, that many people aren’t necessary.

Ask yourself- is the purpose of this character to have a world and path of their own, or to move the plot forward in a few key scenes? If it’s the former- great! If it’s the latter- give those key scenes to another character who is fully fleshed out and who is not just a prop in service of your plot- it’ll give more gravity to those moments because the characters are more integrated with the story by nature of the fact that there’s more to them than their main plot significance.

Have someone else do it

Presumably, the reason you’ve been made aware of a “darling” is because you showed your script to a friend or colleague. If you trust them, or have another person you trust, why not give them a go? Give them a new document to cut what they wish, then read over the new version yourself. If you don’t notice something’s gone or it only takes a small rewrite to connect the dots between sections previously separated by darlings, it might be easier to let them go. (shout out to Dana Luery Shaw for suggesting you let someone else do the dirty work)

Save stuff for later

In The Good Place podcast, which I highly recommend, the writers of the show talk about how when a joke gets cut or changed in an episode, it doesn’t get purged from the Earth. Instead, jokes that don’t make it to air end up in the “candy jar,” a document of funnies pitched to dip into when in need of a laugh or some inspiration.

When we talk about “darlings,” we call them that because they’re good, they just might not be good for this particular project or moment. So don’t reject them entirely- protect them and put them in a list of things you want to revisit eventually. That can often help with the sting of killing them- maybe we should rephrase to “gently guiding your darlings to a waiting room because they aren’t needed quite yet.”

Do you have an example of a darling you’ve killed? Or do you have another method for identifying and trimming them? Let me know in the comments!

Peggy Bechko: “Tell The Damn Story!”

by Peggy Bechko

Whether you’re writing a TV show, a movie, a nevel, you-name-it, one simple truth stands out:

Tell the damn story.

What, you say, “simple? How the heck can I keep storytelling simple?”

Somewhere I heard, “a screenplay is a simple story complexly told.” Sounds reasonable. Having written novels (a lot) and screenplays (less so) I can tell you there’s a heckuva difference.

If the script you’ve written feels like a novel, you’re in a lot of trouble. For me, a script is tight and fast and sharp. A novel is more leisurely as the writer gets into the heads of characters and tells the readers things that could never be put up on a screen.

Even if it’s an action/thriller, the writer has much more leeway. The novel is much more dense; there can be a lot of set-up before the plot kicks in. (Actually these days the novel should kick in much more quickly with plot points as well, but that’s another issue.)

Look at it this way. If you’re already writing screen scripts you know you’ll need to come up with a logline and a treatment and a pitch. If you can’t come up with a crisp logline and/or a tight pitch, then you may have written a novel in screen script format.

How many times have you heard someone complain, “the book was better than the movie.” The simple fact is a novel offers more depth and detail. A screenplay simply can’t accommodate the broader scope of a novel and thus many times things the book reader loved won’t be up on the screen.

So going back to the story, simply put, it will be different from the viewpoint of the novel writer and the scriptwriter. The screenwriter who adapts novels to script well aren’t simply pasting scenes from the book into scriptwriting software and tweaking. Nope they’re using storytelling skills, pulling the spine of the book’s story forth and transforming it into the cinematic version of the story.
This frequently means great divergence from the original book and always means leaving things out. Sigh.

Keep it simple. Beware your own lack of faith in your story to the point where you are cramming in lots of characters, complications on top of complications, red herrings, flashbacks and amazing action sequences that just don’t belong.

All of that’s a distraction from the story. Instead of exploring the idea behind your story you’ve buried it and hidden its beauty. The script reader will spot it immediately.

In the end, however, the script and the novel have a lot in common.

There’s the simple story complexly told. It’s the writer who brings the execution to the story telling. It isn’t simply a great ‘concept’.

There’s the premise that delivers on a promise and manages to bring something clever and new to the genre. Think about the movies you’ve seen and loved and the novels you’ve read and loved.

Script and novel need a hero folks can root for – one with a flaw that traces right to the center of the story.

There’s the conflict that must escalate apace and the added twists that grip the audience.

The place where script and novel diverge is the description. Novel is allowed more depth and detail. Script must be lean, but with such sparkling description that it creates the environment with such targeted detail that brings forth the tone of the story while managing to convey subtext.

Supporting characters of both novel and script are complex, compelling, and dimensional.

Dialogue is crisp and real and allows reader or watcher to know that character just by speech.

Finally there is the satisfying ending.

Always we look for the storyteller with a voice. Script or novel. The writer, the one who tells the story must know what their story is truly about at its very core.

Keep it simple. Know the core. Do this and your writing will reach the heights you’ve envisioned and aspired to.

Peggy Bechko is a TVWriter™ Contributing Editor. Learn more about her sensational career HERE. Peggy’s new comic series, Planet of the Eggs, written and illustrated with Charlene Brash-Sorensen is available on Kindle. And, while you’re at it, visit the Planet of the Eggs Facebook page and her terrific blog.

Bri Castellini: What Is The Goal Of Your Web Series? – @stareable

 by Bri Castellini

You can’t have it all. The Stareable Film School blog has a lot to say about doing each part of production to the best of your abilities, but at the end of the day, unless you’re independently wealthy and a close personal friend of Lupita Nyong’o, you’re going to need to pick your battles. The best way to do so is to define the goal of making your web series and understand the priorities and sacrifices that come with that choice, as listed and explained below.

As always, I’m not saying this list is definite- everyone’s situation and opportunity is different, and maybe you’re the exception to the rule. However, we all need to accept that as indie creators, we can’t do it all, and in order to give ourselves, our teams, and our projects the best chance to succeed, we need to be thoughtful about the way we go about our process.

Goal: Gain an online audience

Prioritize: Story, multiple episodes, marketing, and base competency 9

Sacrifice: Long episodes, multiple locations, large casts, quick results

But Why? Gaining an online audience is allegedly (we’ll get to this) the biggest reason why people make content for the web, for good reason. An audience is validating, raises your profile to decision makers and industry connections, and might even help pay you to continue making the content you love. Building an audience is also incredibly time-consuming, and I’m exclusively talking about the work occuring after the project is already shot. Due to the amount of money and time and favors you’re going to spend just in the marketing phase, I recommend, at least for your first project or two, trading longer episodes with more locations and cast with more episodes, so you have more runway for your marketing efforts to succeed.

Of course, you also need to, as Snobby Robot puts it, ‘deliver the goods.’ So make sure your story is solid and your show is watchable on a technical level. There’s always room for improvement as your profile rises and your resources bulk up, but an audience has to start somewhere.

Goal: Sell concept to TV

Prioritize: Pilot, season screenplay, festivals

Sacrifice: Multiple produced episodes, transmedia, marketing

But Why? Let’s all be real with each other: when we say our goal is to gain an audience, what we really mean is that with enough attention we’re hoping to be the next High Maintenance or Broad City. Fair enough. But if TV is actually your goal, building an audience might not actually be the only (or best) way to get there. With a beautifully produced pilot, a solid season’s worth of scripts, and some festival acceptances, you might not be seen by everyone, but you’ll have a much higher likelihood to being seen by the right people. It’s rare that industry executives browse YouTube in their spare time, but they definitely send emissaries to festivals to check out the fresh meat pre-chosen by festival programmers. And when people with decision-making power do check out your work, they’re far more likely to consume a pilot then they are to consume a 30 episode season, no matter how great the episode 7 twist is. They’re busy people, so make your first impression count, because it’s likely all they’ll see.

Goal: Showcase [insert skillset here] for future employment

Prioritize: That skill, base competency 9, festivals

Sacrifice: Anything that doesn’t immediately serve that skill, marketing

But Why? Even writers benefit from a visual portfolio piece, and certainly cinematographers and actors and directors are hard-pressed to prove themselves without a visual component on their resumes. A web series is a great “show, don’t tell” tool- far more persuasive than spending five minutes explaining that your greatest weakness is that you work too hard. But if the point is to showcase your screenwriting, maybe don’t worry so much about lengthy establishing shots of the beautiful lake and a four-minute single-take tracking shot around the winding spaceship corridors. Instead, tell a great story with compelling dialog and submit to a few festivals in that category so you can add “award-winning” to the beginning of your role for extra resume/reel flavor.

Goal: Make money

Prioritize: Researching brands/partners, versatile script, pilot, marketing

Sacrifice: Multiple episodes, season scripts, full creative control

But Why? From what I understand, the few ways you can make money from a web series specifically (eschewing multiple revenue streams for the purposes of this conversation) are selling merchandise, finding a distributor that pays, setting up a subscription service for superfans (a la Patreon), or partnering with a brand. As such, similar to wanting to sell to TV, you should focus on an amazing first impression (a great pilot) and then building an audience around that content promise to leverage with buyers and distributors. Or if you want to go the true independent route and use that content promise to get people psyched enough to want to pay to make the rest of it, like the creators of Binge. In any case, make a single something great and don’t make more until someone gives you the money to do so.

Goal: Increase representation

Prioritize: Tropes research, base competency 9, marketing

Sacrifice: Large cast/crew, multiple locations

But Why? Often a project comes together because a creator gets frustrated with the lack of representation of some subset of humanity, like Gal Pals 1 and lesbian representation or Sam and Pat Are Depressed and mental health awareness or Binge 1 and people with eating disorders. The thing I want to emphasize here is that there’s a reason traditional media keeps telling the same stories- the people who want those stories have had more experience, have more power in decision making, and have the benefit of being seen as the default, so they don’t have to try as hard. One bad white guy action movie doesn’t immediately flag all future white guy action movies as not worth it, but we all remember the Sony hack 1 and how long it took female superheroes to bounce back from Catwoman and Elektra.

As such, if your goal is to increase representation, you need to first, make sure your story avoids or recognizes certain harmful tropes for those communities, and second, make sure your series is good. Is that fair? Of course not. I wish we were in a world where subpar straight rom coms and subpar queer rom coms were judged with the same scorecard, but they’re not. You don’t have to be perfect, but you have to be thoughtful and watchable.

Goal: Tell a story you couldn’t tell any other way

Prioritize: Script, actors, project completion, base competency 9

Sacrifice: Marketing, quick results

But Why? There’s a difference between making a show and telling a story. There’s a happy medium, but if your main goal is just to tell a story, tell it! Don’t worry about the rest. It may take longer to get it right- it’s a passion project after all, and passion is rarely an efficient thing to chase- and it may not find a broad audience since the story, not the promotion, was the focus.

Goal: Finish a project

Prioritize: Finishing the project, scheduling in advance, deadlines

Sacrifice: Marketing, base competency 9, ambitious elements

But Why? Sometimes the best way to start your career or the best way to get your groove back in a period of artistic doubt is to just finish something. Maybe it’ll never see the light of day. Maybe it shouldn’t. But finishing something is as worthy a creative goal as anything else on this list, so give yourself permission to chill out. Just finish it, learn from it, and use it as a jumping off point. Rome and film careers aren’t built in a day, but that first day is still crucial.

Are there any goals I missed? Any misplaced priorities or sacrifices? Let me know in the comments!

John Ostrander: The Uncivil War

by John Ostrander

“Fuck civility!”

Chuck Wendig

Chuck Wendig, an author of (among other things) Star Wars novels and comics, was working on a Darth Vader miniseries for Marvel when his editor informed him he was fired. Wendig said it was “because of the negativity and vulgarity that my tweets bring… It was too much politics, too much vulgarity, too much negativity on my part.”

It should be noted this is Wendig’s characterization. Marvel has not commented beyond confirming Wendig had been removed.

On October 6, Wendig tweeted: “There will be renewed calls for civility. Ignore them. They ask for civility as a way for you to grant them complicity in what they do…Civility is for normalcy. When things are normal and working as intended, civility is part of maintaining balance. But when that balance is gone, civility does not help return it but rather, destabilize it further. Because your civility gives them cover for evil. . . Note: this isn’t the same as calling for violence. But it is suggesting that you should not be shamed for using vigorous, vulgar language. Or for standing up in disobedience. Or for demanding acknowledgement and action in whatever way you must. . . Fuck Trump. But he’s just the ugly fake-gold mask they’ve put on this thing. Fuck all the GOP, fuck that blubbering, bristling frat boy judge, fuck McConnell, Ryan, Grassley, Collins, every last one of them. Fuck them for how they’ve shamed victims and helped dismantle democracy. . . They will tell you to smile, that we need to get back to business, that we gotta heal the rift and blah blah blah — but that’s the desire of a savvy bully, who wants you to stop crying after he hit you, who wants you not to fight back. But you can cry. And you can fight back. “

Basically, as some put it: ”Fuck civility.” 

Wendig triggered a lot of replies including, especially, some conservative to right wing fans and pros with the apparent desire to stir up enough noise to get Wendig fired – which it did. That’s a thing now. Electronic bullying designed to intimidate, belittle, or in the case of Chuck Wendig, cost them a gig. Hit them in the pocket book. It’s no longer a battle of ideas or even competing philosophies. It’s kill. It’s destroy. The offense is that the other side exists.

My question is – did Marvel and/or its parent company Disney clearly state in the contract with Wendig that this kind of language and this kind of attitude expressed on the Internet could be cause for termination? Did they warn him at any point before he was fired? Or did they just pull the trigger? Are they making it easier for the trolls to win? The trolls have a plan: raise enough of a ruckus and you can damage your opponent/victim. You can silence them – which is the real purpose. That’s how you win – and that’s all that matters to them. Go for the jugular. Forget the argument being made; attack your opponent personally. If it’s a woman, threaten rape or death.

What do you do? Chuck Wendig suggests replying in kind. Former AG Eric Holder said: “It is time for us as Democrats to be as tough as they are, to be as dedicated as they are, to be as committed as they are. Michelle [Obama] always says, ‘When they go low, we go high.’ No. No. When they go low, we kick them.”

Here’s my problem. When Trump is gone (that day will come) we’ll still have this festering wound. To my mind, that’s the real damage to the Body Politic. I’ve heard comparisons made between our era and Germany before WW2 but I don’t think that’s the most apt comparison. I’ve read history and the current rancor feels to me like this country just before the American Civil War. That’s what we’ll still have to deal with when Trump himself is gone; that will be his lasting legacy.

I don’t have an answer. I don’t know how else we oppose the trolls. I fully understand the desire to fight fire with fire. I feel it, too. To fight the enemy, however, do you have to become the enemy? If we do, haven’t we lost the real battle? The only thought I’m left with is this:

Fuck incivility.

John Ostrander is one of LB’s favorite writers in any medium. It’s been awhile since he’s been here, but now John’s back with a new column at a new blog, PopCultureSquad, where this piece first appeared (with lots of pictures even). You can learn more about John and his many masterworks HERE

John Ostrander: My Own Private Film Fest

by John Ostrander

It’s starting to get chilly outside which makes it a good time to stay indoors, get cozy, and watch movies. Sometimes – usually by accident – I find I’ve created my own personal mini movie festival around a theme or a certain actor or genre. I have a Christmas mini festival and Mary is putting together a Halloween one.

I did it recently around a specific time and place; Britain just before or early in the Second World War. All the films were, in one way or another, historical movies. Some characters are repeated in more than one film although in different interpretations and, of course, the events overlap but without being repetitive.

I wanted all four films to be of recent manufacture; time lends some perspective. However, we also have to remember that we as viewers know how the overall story turns out. When you’re a participant in the middle of it, you don’t, and that causes some anxiety. For example, we — at this time — don’t know how the story of the American adventure with the Trump Presidency is going to turn out and that is causing some anxiety.

If we go chronologically, we’ll start with Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day (2008) directed by Bharat Nailuri. It stars Frances McDormand, Amy Adams, Lee Pace (you knew him as Ronan the Accuser), Ciaran Hinds, Mark Strong, and Shirley Henderson (Moaning Myrtle in the Harry Potter films).

The story is set in London just before World War 2 and, while a romantic comedy, the sense of the coming war’s dark shadow overlays it. There are constant reminders and two of the older characters who lived through the First World War have a deep dread of the coming conflict.

The cast is uniformly fine. Ms. McDormand would later win an Oscar for her performance in Three Billboards. . .and is just as fine here. Ms. Adams, besides being a terrific actor with fine comedic chops, also has a beautiful singing voice and makes interesting use of it here. Her character, Delysia, is a nightclub singer who intends to star in a West End musical and go on to Hollywood.

The trick Ms. Adams uses is that Delysia isn’t quite as good a singer as she thinks she is. Amy Adams IS a very good singer but she allows Delysia to be not quite as good (I heard and adored Amy Adams in Enchanted and the gal can sing) and that plays into a key moment in the climax.

Miss Pettigrew serves as a good prelude for this mini-festival, setting the stage for the war to come. It’s also a very delightful and entertaining film, one that I’ve watched often.

Next up we have The King’s Speech (2010) directed by Tom Hooper and starring Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter, Derek Jacobi, Michael Gambon, and Guy Pearce. Firth won the Best Actor Oscar for his performance as King George VI.

The movie is set just prior to and through the opening weeks of the Second World War. Firth’s King George VI (aka Prince Albert, aka Bertie) has a bad stammer and during the course of the movie receives speech therapy from the unorthodox Lionel Logue. His brother Edward becomes king on the death of their father but must abdicate when he resolves to marry the American divorcee, Wallis Simpson and Bertie must ascend the throne.

The climax of the film focuses on the speech Bertie must make on the radio to the country and the Empire following the declaration of War between the U.K. and Nazi Germany.

The slender thread the film tries to sell us is how vitally important it is that the King make the speech without tripping over his own tongue. I’m not unsympathetic; I had a bad stammer myself as a boy. I find it difficult, however, to entirely buy just how truly important the speech was. Perhaps it was; I wasn’t there.

The movie makes the climax suspenseful and the cast carries it off and the movie won a bucket of Oscars, including Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, and Best original Screenplay (David Seidler). It was also nominated for several others, including Best Supporting Actor (Geoffrey Rush, who should have got it), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Helena Bonham Carter) and six others. Again, a film I’ve watched and enjoyed many times.

Side note: Harry Potter fans will note the number of Potter film alumni in The King’s Speech, including Ms. Bonham Carter, Michael Gambon (Dumbledore in most of the films), and Timothy Spall, who plays Churchill in The King’s Speech, also did Wormtail in the Potter series. It may be a rule over in the U.K. that each film must employ x amount of actors from the Potter Players.

We now come to 2017’s Darkest Hour (directed by Joe Wright) which overlaps The King’s Speech quite a bit, taking us from pre-war up through the early months of World War 2. Gary Oldman won his well deserved Oscar for his portrayal of Winston Churchill.

The movie, like The King’s Speech, climaxes with a speech – in this case Churchill’s famous speech to the House of Commons on June 4, 1940 of “We shall fight them on the beaches. . .”

I was unaware just how dark the hour was until this movie; there were real discussions in Churchill’s cabinet of surrender. The British army was trapped (along with French and Belgian soldiers) on the beaches of Dunkirk on the coast of France, with the real probability of being captured or annihilated. There was little that would keep a Nazi invasion from taking the island kingdom and that would have made a very different war.

Oldman’s Churchill is very different from Spall’s portrayal in The King’s Speech and the relationship between Churchill and the King is quite different in the two films. It’s very warm and rather friendly in the prior film; not so much in Darkest Hour, although the two do come to an understanding and support each other.

Oldman’s portrayal of Churchill stands right up there with Daniel Day Lewis’s portrayal of Lincoln. It should be regarded as definitive. You don’t see the actor (hard to do anyway under the clothes and make-up); you get a sense of watching the person although it is just one film’s version of that person.

This film seems to defy the Potter Player’s rule although there seems a good representation from the Dark Knight trilogy that Christopher Nolan directed. Oldman, of course, did (Commissioner) Jim Gordon in all three films and Ben Mendelsohn, who is George VI in this film, also played Daggett in The Dark Knight Rises.

Mentioning The Dark Knight trilogy also brings us to the last film in our mini-festival, 2017’s Dunkirk, directed by the Dark Knight’s director, Christopher Nolan. The film has a sprawling cast but it would be hard for me to pick a central star. It does HAVE stars such as Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance, and Kenneth Branagh, but the story has no central plot and so no central star, IMO.

This film very definitely overlaps the climax of Darkest Hour and is referred to constantly in that story. It is, in fact, central to the resolution of Darkest Hour. Dunkirk is not an easy movie to watch; Nolan is not temporally linear with his plot. Several stories are going on at the same time and we see events first from one perspective and then another. Keeping it all straight can be demanding but it is rewarding.

A key element in the film is the score by Hans Zimmer. I’m appreciative in general of film scores but this one really stands out for me. It is relentless. Not only does it help unite the film but it also keeps tightening the tension. It ratchets up your pulse and doesn’t let it drop until the end of the film. It’s very effective but almost too hard to take. If you have a heart condition, I’d be careful. Seriously.

Dunkirk does have a Potter Player in Kenneth Branagh and, of course, its connection to the Dark Knight trilogy is the director, Christopher Nolan. Yay, pop culture!

By my reckoning, all these films occur within about a three year period, 1937 to mid 1940. Each film, taken by itself, is a very good film but they do benefit from seeing them together. All four are fiction and fiction is allowed to change facts to benefit narrative; they all have different goals and different takes on the characters. That said, I think taken together it can give a feel for that time. One of the primary benefits of fiction is that it can give context, to understand people in a given time and place.

Hopefully, someone in the future can do that with our time and place. I wonder what they will say and which of us will be there to hear it.

John Ostrander is one of LB’s favorite writers in any medium. It’s been awhile since he’s been here, but now John’s back with a new column at a new blog, PopCultureSquad, where this piece first appeared (with lots of pictures even). You can learn more about John and his many masterworks HERE