Nov 29, 2018

The music of Uncle Foreigner: Museums

Sounds to look at art by

keeping things a e s t h e t i c

Nov 26, 2018

Tweet of last week: Glass bridges and farmers’ markets

Of course we read the Shanghaiist

Nov 25, 2018

You’re eating fat birds

Thanksgiving in China, behind-the-scenes

Presenting our very special Thanksgiving episode! Which features very little of the real, traditional American Thanksgiving!

Our friends were so great to help us out filming this. You may not be able to tell from the video, but none of them are professional actors. They’re just our friends ;)

Also, I am notorious for overestimating people’s level of English reading. Back when I was writing lessons for middle schoolers, I’d have to revise them at least three times to make them simpler. The same happened here, but I was able to do some quick rewrites on the fly to find everyone’s level. And, as you can see in “Behind the ‘Facts,’” they practiced like mad to get it perfect!

When working with friends and amateurs, Peter and I try to be as organized as possible, so we’re not wasting anyone’s donated time. We also try to keep an eye on the fun level in the room. Originally in our script, we had a few more sequences to film, but by the time we go all the individual lines filmed, we decided to call it a wrap. Everyone had worked really hard, but they were still enjoying the evening. I felt like we could have pushed it and gotten the extra jokes, but the mood would have turned from “friendship through a difficult challenge!” to “this slog is never-ending and we’re not friends after tonight.”

Something that always impresses our non-filmmaking friends is our slate. It’s such an iconic signifier of the movie business, that people are really impressed to see one in action. The real reasons we use one are two-fold. Firstly, when you’ve got a lot of video files to sort through and upload, it’s helpful to have a literal signpost stating “Scene 1, shot C, take 3.” This way, you don’t have to scrub through the entire file to figure out what’s going on in a given shot. Secondly, the clap gives you a spike in the sound that is incredibly helpful in matching video with the recorded audio. Our software is OK at doing that automatically, but I have had to do it by hand more than a few times.

So another Thanksgiving has come and gone. For the past few years, our actual Thanksgiving celebration has been going to Peter’s Tex Mex for the expat turkey extravaganza, and this year was no different. Except, this year they comped us our meal! Thanks, Peter’s! Luzhou is always welcoming us, all over town.

Nov 24, 2018

The music of Uncle Foreigner: Yield

Trafficking in sounds

We’re all going somewhere, and we need something to listen to on the way! Here’s the sounds of “Yield when we die.”

Nov 23, 2018

Instagram always: Cast photo

Our Thansharing friends have a fabulous meal

Our friends came together for a hot pot Thanksgiving, to help us make our Thanksharing spectacular. It was a lot of fun to make!

Nov 19, 2018

Tweet of last week: Who drew that?

A guide to the Hello Uncle Foreigner animations

And that’s how you know.

Nov 18, 2018

Cultivated progress: Making art, individuality & punks behind Chinese walls

Uncle’s Shorts #38

We tackle Art this week, in about 8 minutes. So, you know … it’s pretty thorough.

The ending animation we did with our new Adonit Pixel stylus and this nifty animation app I found for my iPad. Animation, as you may know, is pretty labor intensive, but it’s also a lot of fun, so we’re excited to start expanding our repertoire in that direction.

Dave’s interview takes place outside of Luzhou, actually, in a suburb called Naxi. He brought us to this great little BBQ place, where you cook your own meats right on the table. I love cooking my own meats right on the table!

Nov 15, 2018

Instagram always: Turkey Toons!

A Thanksharing animation

Nov 12, 2018

Happy Thanksharing, to all our fellow Foriegners

A time of year to spread existential cheer

This holiday season, we’ve declared Thanksharing! It’s a time for friends and family to get together and tell each other how awesome Hello Uncle Foreigner is! Your roommate’s brother studying Mandarin; your cousins who travel to China each Spring Festival; your ski instructor … Thankshare with all of them the glories of HUF. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to catch all the latest videos right when they hit the ‘net.

And happy Thanksharing to all Foreigners, wherever you are!

Foreigner

  • A person whose homeland is a country different from the one in which they are presently extant
  • A super-rocking band that you love
  • One of a tribe of wacky misfits who has always felt a little on the outside of everything, but has found a spiritual home in the works of Hello Uncle Foreigner

Nov 10, 2018

True electric power

Uncle’s Shorts #37: Visiting a Chinese temple

Luzhou autumn starts cold and rainy and ends colder and rainier, but there’s always a brief window of weather that’s just, like, the Platonic ideal of a beautiful fall day. This year, my friend Michael invited me out for a hike during that time, and even though I was incubating a cold, there was no way I could say no. If the sun is out, you must go.

We took a trip out to Fawang Temple, about an hour outside Luzhou. Peter and I had been out to the temple on Fangshan Mountain a few times, but Fangshan is for tourists, Michael told me. He said that Fawang was much better. And he was right. It was gorgeous and peaceful, and a really nice day outside of the city.

This week’s Uncle’s Shorts episode also features an interview with a young man English-named Curly. He was Peter’s student back at Tianfu Middle School, and for many years now has been living in Singapore pursuing his higher education. This interview takes place before he shipped out; at the time he told us that he got travel sick on the trip from his nearby hometown to Luzhou, but it seems like he made it to Singapore OK.