Rellos Sandwiches

Production Maverix has got something delicious for you, hungry readers. I’m sure you’ve been looking for somewhere great to eat lunch, haven’t you? I’ve seen that leftover casserole you put in the fridge this morning (I’m everywhere, don’t you doubt me), and it’s sad, man. Real sad. You can do better than that.

Rello Sandwiches is exactly  the kick in the pants your day needs. It’s got the fresh, local ingredients you expect at an affordable price, all served to you with care by the owner/operator. It’s got to be the best place in Ottawa for sandwiches, and Production Maverix was on location to bring it to your screens (and to eat more than a few sandwiches).

When you see the care and attention that goes into every monument of meat and cheese, you’ll have a hard time even getting that newly gift wrapped piece of heaven out the door and back into the dark confines of your office before it’s gone. The old adage about seeing a sausage get made doesn’t apply here.


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Video Lens: A Conversation While…

I realize I’ve mostly focused on the internal goings-on of the Production Maverix team and our projects, but trust me, there’s so much more going on in the wide world of the internet. Seriously, check it out some time. Have you heard of this new “Google”? It’s going to be huge. And I hear there’s this new “Facebook” out there. It’ll never be bigger than MySpace or anything, but it’s exciting nonetheless.

Anyway, Video Lens is a new aspect to the blog, wherein I tell you about something cool and (usually) new that I’ve found. Sometimes I’ll talk about a web series, sometimes a new film, maybe a TV episode or something. It’s a “lens” through which you can all discover “video”, if you will. This instalment, Video Lens is about a series floating its way around the tubes. It has intelligence, humour, and (believe it or not) existentialism. It’s called A Conversation While…created by St. Jake Productions (composed of director Stephen Boatright and the writing/acting talents of Kevin Joiner and Jason McMahon).


It’s billed as an “existential crime drama”, which sounds much more intimidating than the final product. At its heart, it’s a conversation between the St. Jake brothers as they go about their less than reputable business. While they’re burying a body, or lifting merchandise from a loading dock, they talk about life’s big problems. It’s a row about Russell, an argument about Aristotle, a…something about Sartre. I don’t know. It’s good.

And don’t think you need a masters degree just to follow the script, it’s neatly laid out, the language is clear and concise, and there’s a certain layman quality to the way the scenes are written, as befitting a couple of criminals trying to make some sense of their world.

So far there’s one season of the show. Each episode is (roughly) 5 minutes long, cramming a thought provoking premise into a (mostly) unrelated action. Whether it’s discussing the ideas of soulmates and love while counterfeiting a drivers license or ruminating on the ramifications of communication in the digital age while using a stolen credit card, it’s both thought provoking and subtly hilarious. It’s in, it’s out, and you’ve accidentally digested a miniature university lecture that’s been trojan horse’d into an entertaining web short.

It’s a wonderful little series that I whole-heartedly recommend. They’re incredibly talented guys, and they’ve got a Mobcaster page to raise money for a television pilot. In a world where Two and a Half Men and The Big Bang Theory can get 6+ seasons while Arrested Development gets cancelled, we can definitely use some more intelligence on the airwaves.

It may not be the full length, killer television show we need to reboot the broadcast landscape. There’s still going to be the reality television and easy to digest sitcoms that deliver exactly what sells for the lowest cost, but it could at least start the conversation…

A Matter of Taste: Toastmasters

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There are some really great speakers in this world. It’s an invaluable skill that lets you influence people, convey an opinion, and generally impress your peers.

It’s a skill I decidedly lack. There’s a reason I’m behind the camera, rather than in front of it.

Luckily, there’s any number of clubs, even just in the Ottawa area, that can help you become a better orator. Of these, the one with the most immediate name recognition has to be Toastmasters.

Toastmasters is an international, non-profit organization with over 13,000 chapters around the world. It’s a very affordable way to meet new people and work on your public speaking skills. It is focused around working together, with the members themselves helping to critique and improve each other’s deliveries. Ottawa itself plays host to many chapters of Toastmasters, but one of the most interesting (and delicious) has to be “A Matter of Taste”.

A Matter of Taste is a chapter that meets monthly for meetings. They give speeches, they give critiques, there’s a sense of community and camaraderie. The difference, however, is that they meet at a different restaurant around Ottawa. It’s an exciting time, combining interesting conversation, lively speeches, and some delicious food (remember to swallow before starting your speech).

The Production Maverix team was fortunate enough to be at the last meeting, at the Bay Street Bistro. The members were very friendly, and the speeches were top notch. Even as an observer, there was a lot of interesting information about public speaking, and some great examples about how to better present ideas. I can only imagine how helpful the club would be for its members.

In any case, check out this short video. It’s got a great overview of the club, and some mouthwatering soups…burgers…cakes…an apple crumble that looked so…

Sorry, I got a little carried away. The speeches. Their words were like a finely cooked plate of fish, topped with the perfect garnish and just the most exquisite light sauce…

Maybe just watch the video.

SoCapOttawa 2012

The gods descend upon you, puny mortals. The skies open and the Pixel Pantheon step down from their thrones to grace Ottawa with their glorified presence.

Alright, so maybe it’s less of “descending from the clouds” and more “skulking out of the edit suite to brave the light of day”, but it’s still a rare and exciting event.

This weekend, the Production Maverix (formally known asPixel Lens Productions) team is going to be at Social Capital Conference, or SOCAP as it’s affectionately known. SOCAP is a “social media learnathon”, featuring great guest speakers, interesting exhibits and the chance to rub elbows with some of the giants of Ottawa social media. There’s a lot of knowledge to be had from some real masters of marketing in this ever-connected digital age. It’s an ever changing world, and the strategies for keeping yourself relevant to the Youtube/Facebook/Twitter generation are a far cry from the ones that worked for broadcast.

We’ll even have a booth there and everything. It’s going to be cool.

Stop by and say hello, ask some questions. We have an exciting game prepared for all the attendees, with a special prize for a special someone. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, and the only way to be a part of the festivities is to be there in person.