Traveled half way across the country from Wisconsin to California so I could follow my dreams of becoming an actress. I'm documenting my adventures along with the struggles of the true Hollywood story of a no name girl trying to break into the filmmaking industry. I'm not going to sugar coat anything or lie about my experiences to make the journey sound better then what honestly is going on. I will be revealing the true reality, the success if any, and the heartache of what happens when trying to reach this one in a million dream. So come on this roller coaster with me and my dog Gizmo to see for yourself what it takes to make it, what it doesn't, or maybe you'll realize this dream could in fact be for you.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tapings & Camera Shopping

I found out that most of the shorts i have acted in out here in California, i will not be getting the footage to use and show people online. This really is a bummer since i acted and took of a few days to work on those projects without even getting paid. I did those projects because i was told i would be getting the footage to use for my acting reel (a reel is a must for actors to show casting directors and agents their acting ability and why they should want to work with them). Instead of being upset or getting angry about the situation, i am just irrated to the point i don't want to do non paying films for anyone anymore. I am actually really glad this has happened because it made me realize i need to just buy my own camera and make my own filming projects. I concluded, instead of wasting my time and energy to try to get the footage i already shot months and months ago, i should just come up with my own scripts and film when i want to instead of waiting on other people. I have editing programs as well so i could edit the short movies after filming them. The other day during our taping session (Past Blog On Tappings) we decided to try shooting a scene with both of us and edit it to make it look like a film scene. It actually turned out okay for our first try. We shot it in my tiny apartment so we couldn't get the best angles, nevertheless it was more of a test run to see if it would be doable. We do have much more to learn and figure out how to make the shorts look really good and professional. I look at it as you have to start at the bottom and work your way up to achieve the best and that is fine by me! Because months down the road the videos will start looking better and better! Practice makes perfect!


After editing our scene i realized that if i am going to create short films i am going to need to invest in a better/professional video camera. Therefore, Gizmo and i went off to Best Buy to look at the SLR cameras and get some information. I am not sure what camera to get. I do like the 5D and 7D cameras but i can't afford that right now. I am looking at something around or under a thousand dollars. If anyone has any advice on what cameras would be best please let me know!


This improv exercise relationship is that we are best friends and took us a few years to save up enough money to travel the world. We are in Spain our first stop and my best friend lost our tickets to get onto the plane to go to our next destination. We don't have enough cash on hand to afford to buy another ticket; however, she found a lot of cash in an envelope in the bathroom and we are discussing what we should do with it.

Nicole is talking with Casey at a bar. They are senior college students and they're chatting about spring break. Nicole is a wild child who just wants to make life fun!

This audition reading is from Disney 365 
It is one of my attempts for the commercial read of our tapping sessions.

-jahnna randall

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Working in Flash for Next Website I'm Designing

Today i worked in flash to practice and keep getting better at learning how to use it. Flash is streaming animation for websites (since i am a web-designer, it is a good idea to know how to use flash in today's generation). Flash can be used throughout an HTML website or can be used for the whole website. Flash files are referred to as Flash movies. Flash is .swf files that are fast to load on a web browser and make websites less boring in my opinion. I haven't worked with flash on my web designs much but that will all change for the next website i am creating. I am working on a web series site for "One Night Stand" which is a show about a Minneapolis rock band and the truth behind the rock-star life.

Starting off today, I did two simple flash exercises to get my feet wet and created a fake bar banner along with a green alien who runs around the screen. I took snap shots of the finished products but you can't see the animation since it is just a picture.

After finishing the two simple exercises i realized flash is similar to other web design programs i use like Photoshop and Dreamweaver. By all means flash isn't exactly the same as those programs but i thought it was similar enough for me to understand how to use it. Convincing myself flash is comparable, i attempted to create a gallery for the One Night Stand web series.  Assuming I'd get a good head start with designing the beginning of the gallery; however, i actually got close to finished with it (may add more photos later with a scrolling sidebar). I attached photos below of what the gallery looks like; although, you can't see what it actually does. When you hover over a picture with your mouse a blue line appears on the top letting you know you can click the picture. Once you click the photo you'll hear a camera sound and the picture fades in from white like the photo was just being taken. I haven't designed the background of the site, as of right now it is just white with no other creation besides the photo gallery.

Some of the coding for the Gallery

Feel free to comment, critique, or ask questions

-Jahnna Randall

Monday, April 25, 2011

Morning Scare

Today on our morning run it was a little different yet kind of scary. I go to this park that is close by and i run around it; however, when i was done i started walking away from the park and this old crazy guy started screaming and cursing. It didn't faze me much since a lot of people out here in California do that on the street, but when he started to follow me that's when it become not so normal. My first instinct was to pick up Gizmo so he couldn't do anything to him, such as throw him into the street or grab him. My second instinct was to beat the read light before he could. Which i did, however he just walked through the red light. So then i knew 100 percent he was following me. I knew right there and then to walk slow and not lead him to where i live. He finally gave up, turned around and walked the other direction when i stopped and wouldn't keep walking. It was a little intimidating. I didn't realize i needed to bring my mace out with me during the day. I guess you never really know these days. Gizmo and I are fine now but wow, what a scare to start off the day. Might need a glass of wine after that LOL!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Sunday!

This Easter was a little different for Gizmo and I. Last year at this time Giz and I headed up to San Francisco but this year with money being a little tight we stayed in the LA area and ordered in. I wasn't in the mood to cook a dinner for just Giz and I so we ordered some delicious Thai food.We got Red Curry with beef and steamed rice with shrimp wontons for appetizers. However, next time i will make sure to get the wontons fried, but other then that, the food was wonderful. After a great dinner i went to a church down the road with a friend to watch some outstanding dancing and singing. I hope you all had a wonderful Easter:


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Morning adventure & Wedding Invite

Would of been nice to go here!
On our morning run we noticed a school that had outdoor lockers. How cool would it be to have outdoor lockers! When i grew up as a kid (in the cold Wisconsin area) there was no way of us having our lockers outside since it was usually below zero.

But this is were i went...burr too cold!
Also on our run/walk we went to a Thai restaurant to get their to go menu so Gizmo and i would be able to have a good Easter dinner tomorrow. I asked them if they will be open tomorrow and they said yes; however, on the to go menu it said closed every last Sunday of the month. So if they aren't open tomorrow, we will either order from a different Thai restaurant right next door or order papa johns! Whatever Gizmo feels like when tomorrow comes.

On the way back i got in the mail a wedding invite, dang we are all growing up. I am excited to go back home for two weeks this summer and see all my friends and family and of course drink a little with my Wisconsin buddies at the wedding!


Justin & Erin Wedding Invite!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Car Audition and the Beach

Yesterday i had an audition for a car commercial in Santa Monica. My commercial agent gave me the notice the night before for me to audition for the role of women #1. The description of the character was:
She should have a demure, shy quality about her. Be physically delicate and attractive, ( not model) approachable, someone we would want to meet
There was no script involved for this commercial audition so i packed up Gizmo and we headed to the west-side. There wasn't much traffic but looking at the other side of the freeway it was stopped pretty badly which meant going back home was going to be a problem. I found the audition building right away, parked, and filled the meter machine. When i entered the building there was quite a lot of people inside (other casting projects were going on as well), but i found my audition and signed in while looking over the boards. Boards are a piece of paper with a description/photos that explains to an actor what they will be doing in the commercial. It is always a little intimidating for me when i have no clue what the casting director is going to have me do. Right after i signed in, the casting director called my name and i went into the casting room. There were two other people inside which i think were probably the directors of the commercial shoot. The casting director had me slate (say my name) and then had me make car trouble noises and that was it. I said thank you and then left the building. Most commercial auditions are very similar to this one, where the casting director has the actors do random things while putting you on tape. After leaving the room i noticed to myself that i was not at all nervous. I usually am nervous for commercial auditions because you don't get any practice or thoughts of what you will do until you get into the room and at that point the casting director is taping you, so your first choice of what you are going to do counts a lot! With the unnerves of that commercial audition, i really believe my taping auditions are really paying off!!! (Past Blog on Tapings)

I wasn't even in the building for more then ten minutes and since i pumped the meter machine full of quarters, i knew Gizmo would be tempted to stay for awhile since the traffic is bad going home. With the puppy dog eyes he gave me i couldn't resist so we walked to the beach.



-Jahnna Randall

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Video Audition for Co-Creator of the Blair Witch Project

I had one of my taping audition classes yesterday (Past Blog on Tapings) and i thought i would tap a scene for an actual audition for the co-creator of the BLAIR WITCH PROJECT. He is casting a new action adventure webseries and is looking for a character named Lizzy who can play 18-20.  Lizzy is Kurt's steady girlfriend of two years and she is a free spirit, but a loyal friend. So i figured why not give it a shot. So below is the audition tapings i sent over for the webseries. I sent over two different versions of what i thought Lizzy could be like. The first version is a free spirit and laughs things off a bit and the second version is more carrying/concerned over Kurt. In the scene i am talking to Kurt and his best friend Daryl about the weird things that happen to Kurt where he should have been seriously hurt but nothing ever seems to happen to him.


For the improv exercise the relationship was that we know each other because i gave my baby up for adoption. I was seventeen years old when i gave her up and the father was my first love. I called the now mother to meet up for lunch and i am asking if i could see Emma since it has been five years.

-Jahnna Randall

About Taping Audition Scenes

A friend of mine get together during the week to have our own acting audition class/rehearsals.
We both go onto showfax (a website that has the sides/scripts of all the projects happening in Hollywood) and print off a scene that we believe we would be cast for or we might be called to audition for. We then memorize it and put each other on tape (video camera) just like how the casting directors do it in the room. First i will film her and ask her to slate (Name and character she is reading) and then she will do the scene while i read along as the other character just like an actual casting director would do. Then we switch positions, i read my scene, she tapes and becomes the casting director.

It is a great learning lesson and keeps our acting chops up to date. After we tape we then watch the video to see what we look like. It is amazing because when you put yourself on tape you can really see if you have any bad habits. Which could be biting your lips, looking down too much, reading the script too much or what i noticed for me was i moved my eyebrows way way toooooo much.
I started really focusing on actors in movies now and i noticed they are so still. Their faces don't move much and all of their emotions and what they are saying is in the eyes.

We also tape commercial auditions as well during our acting class.
Commercial auditions are much different then film auditions. When auditioning for a commercial casting director you are still being video taped but the style of scripts are shorter and most of the time there is a board in the room. A board is a big piece of paper that is standing on the side of the camera. This is for the actor to recall their lines towards the camera instead of glancing down at a script in your hands. This board sounds like a piece of cake and easy for an actor; however, that board is the devil in my eyes. Why i say that is because it is so easy to just stare at the board and read it; therefore, on tape an actor reading the board and not delivering their lines looking into the camera comes off really bad on tape. Which leads to an actor not getting hired.

Before we tape our audition pieces and commercial reads we do an improv exercise. We give each other a small scenario of our relationship (who we are to each other) and then jump right into the scene. An example of a relationship could be we are sisters and i lost her puppy. With improv there is no dialogue written out, you work off of each other, and use your instincts to express how you really feel. So it's kind of like real life where you speak your mind but in an imaginary place.


-Jahnna Randall