NYU

Thankful

Good evening and thanks for stopping by!

If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you know that my financial situation almost kept me from accepting my spot at NYU Tisch last spring. But what I haven’t told you is that my financial situation almost kept me from entering my second year at Tisch.

The Truth

I had to use all my savings and resources on just making it through my first year of film school. My family, friends and even anonymous donors put a lot of work into making my dream of film school become a reality, and I did end up having enough money to make it through the year, for which I’m incredibly grateful.

As you now, my semester was filled with lots of stressful events that kept me busy, and the truth is that throughout the entire year I had no idea if I’d even be able to afford a second year at Tisch.

I chose not to worry about it, because I wanted to believe God would provide, somehow.

The Bread and the Bananas

My close friends started to notice this “economical scarcity” on my eating habits, while others probably thought I was “just on a special diet consisting of bread, bananas, yoghurt and peanut butter.” I’m not a big fan of either of those foods (certainly not after this year…), but I found that it was cheap enough for my budget and it gave me what I needed to keep going.

However, I received the most wonderful email a few weeks ago. If you follow me on Facebook and Instagram, chances are you already know, but I’ll tell you again.

I got to know I’ve been accepted as a NORAM Scholar and was selected as a recipient for a scholarship that will help me close the financial gap between what I get in funds from Norway and my Tisch Scholarship.

As a result, I’ll be able to attend NYU Tisch for another year!

It’ll still be tight, and I’ll probably have to sustain myself on a few more of those banana sandwiches in this upcoming year, but receiving this scholarship lifts a huge burden off my shoulders. Combined with my reporting job this summer, I might even be able to afford some actual meals.

God is so good, and he does, indeed, provide.

Here are some pictures from the award ceremony at the Nobel Institute in Oslo:


Three Lavelles. My sister had to work, and couldn’t make it to the ceremony. But the three of us had a great time.

 

Have a blessed evening,
Maria

 

Psalm 23.

To be Norwegian Viking

Good morning from Brooklyn!

After a blizzard and hours of delays in Oslo, I finally made it back to NY last night. I was meaning to give you a little update on how my documentary shoot went before I left, but I suddenly got my hands so full that I had more than enough with just catching my flight.

To make up for my absence, I’ll try my best to make it up to you with this post: Not only will you get a sneak peek of the film; you’ll also get a full interview with me talking about it, haha.

Right before I flew back to the US, I was asked to do a quick interview with a TV-station in my hometown. You can watch it by clicking on the video below, and you can turn on English subtitles by hitting the white square in the bottom right corner.

Video by Hnytt: Karen Hesseberg & Olav Husås.

To watch some of my previous TV-appearances, CLICK HERE.

Anyway, the documentary-shoots went really well, thanks to all the wonderful people who helped me out.

A Viking-doc in the making.

A post shared by MARIA LAVELLE (@lanoet) on

 

The Viking Club at Karmøy welcomed me and my camera with open arms, and rarely have I worked with someone who were able to act as naturally as these folks — despite having to deal with a big furry microphone floating inside their field of vision at all times. The final product will be a short cinema-verte style doc. Stay tuned for more info.

Photo: Cecilie Udstuen.

Special thanks to
– The members of Vikingklubben Karmøy.
– Cathrine Glette: Line Producer.
– Fredrik Skauge: Boom Operator.
– Cecilie Udstuen: Production Assistant & Set Photographer.


Photo: Cecilie Udstuen.


Photo: Cecilie Udstuen.

Nothing summarizes the final day of shooting like this final picture does. It was so cold that both Fredrik and I had trouble hitting the buttons on our gear with our frozen fingers, and the winds were so strong it almost lifted the camera off its tripod. That however, seems to be the norm for my shoots. I shot “Over the Bridge” in the dead of winter in South Dakota, with temperatures below -16 F (-27 C),” TENDER” in rain and thunder, and now this, haha. I must be Norwegian for a reason.


Photo: Cecilie Udstuen.

I’ll keep you posted throughout the process.

Have a blessed day,
Maria.

Happy New Year!

I made it back to Norway shortly after a successful semester-ending at Tisch, where all of us 1st year students got to show our work at an open screening. I could not be happier with the reaction from the audience, but more importantly, as I sat in my seat and watched 35 other black and white MOS-films, I was almost touched to tears by the feeling of absolute gratitude. The opportunity to learn the craft of filmmaking at one of the world’s most preeminent film schools is enough to bring out that feeling in itself, but I realized that none of that would’ve been the same without the amazing bunch I now have the privilege of calling my classmates and friends.

To see the films they’ve all worked so hard on these past few months just added another layer to our bond as a class, and I think we all left the screening room with different perspectives on both ourselves and each other.

From our first week together. This is not even half of us, but you get the idea. Photo: Flynn Yang.

The day was completed with a premiere party and dinner with my dear Crew 7.

Now, after about a week of doing nothing at all, I’m ready to bring this blog back to life.

You see, this is actually the first real vacation I’ve had in years, so I wanted to make the most of it. By “real” I mean no working or reporting, no intense training sessions in preparation to half-marathons or other extra curriculars, no social media, and no pressure from anywhere or anyone. It’s been pure bliss and very necessary, but now I’m ready to get back to work.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Years from the Lavelles! Photo: Gerd Dagsland.

I have to produce and shoot a short documentary before school starts in mid-January, so I better get that started asap, but I just wanted to stop by and say hello.

Have a blessed New Year.

Much Love,
Maria

Beach

As you know, I’m incredibly proud and thankful to collaborate with Skjaeraasen Jewelry, and since a hint of autumn just hit the city, I wanted to share some of these photos before the summer fades too far into the past.

Please check out their website:
www.skjaeraasen.no

The designer, Kristin Skjæraasen, worked around my otherwise minimalistic style to find jewelry that I don’t just like, but LOVE — and that’s an accomplishment in itself!

Photo: Rannveig Froestad. Jewelry by Skjaeraasen.
Photo: Rannveig Froestad. Jewelry by Skjaeraasen.
Photo: Rannveig Froestad. Jewelry by Skjaeraasen.

 

PS!
If you, after looking at these photos, think that I’m even close to this elegant in real life, let me remind you of who I really am …

Most of the pictures ended up looking like this:

Or this:
(Because I’m always cold and had to warm up between every shot).

But I like running, so it was fine.

This post Part 2 out of many more. Click to see Part 1 HERE.

 

Until next time.

www.skjaeraasen.no

 

Jewelry

In my mind, things that involve cameras are rarely a waste of time. So, when the opportunity to try out “jewelry modeling” came my way, I decided to go for it.

Stepping in front of the camera — as opposed to hitting the shutter myself — really forces me to punch my comfort zone in the face, but I keep telling myself that I’ll be better behind the lens if I know what it feels like to be in front of it.

The jewelry is from Skjæraasen, a Norwegian brand that designs and produces jewelry and interior articles. I’m so honored to collaborate with them — even if they’re based at the opposite side of the country, and we had to shoot the photos here in Haugesund.

My friend Rannveig is a great photographer, and effortlessly filled the geographical gap between two corners of Norway.

I’ve never been big on jewelry, but the designer, Kristin Skjæraasen, somehow managed to figure out what works with my otherwise minimalistic style, and I love it.

I’m excited to show you more of the collection in another post, but please check out the Skjaeraasen website in the meantime.

Skjaeraasen. Photos by Rannveig Froestad.

As you already know, I can be pretty goofy –especially when I’m uncomfortable– so don’t you dare think I kept up that RBF (Resting Bitch Face) the whole day — it cracked rather quickly. Big creds to Rannveig who captured the very few moments in between where I looked decent.

Also, before I get any questions about the tattoo: No, it’s not new, and yes, I could write a whole post about it. Maybe someday. Those of you who are close to me know why that’s a topic for another post.

To see the photoshoot I did with the talented Mike Shafer earlier this year, CLICK HERE.

Have a blessed Friday!

Maria

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