We love hearing about our fellow Imagination Connoisseurs’ journeys through geekdom. And Synthia Barlow has a particularly compelling story that looks like it may end with her submission to the 1st Annual Intergalactic Imagination Connoisseurs’ Film Festival this fall. We anxiously await her entry!
Hi, my name is Synthia and I have been a fan for a short time and a long time. Please allow me to explain. I have known of your work from the movie you directed and I saw it 50 plus times since the first time I rented the movie on a whim. I saw Shatner on the cover, whom I love and respect, and me being a die-hard Trekkie since I was 10, I’m 48 now. I watched the movie and when one of the characters mentioned my all-time favorite group, a group that I loved and have even saved my life at one point in my youth, YES (the name of the classic rock group by the way), I was in love with the film.
A little about me, I’m 48 as I mentioned before, and I’m an amateur screenwriter you know since I haven’t sold anything, I have a few scripts that have won a couple of film festivals, and I’m still learning the craft. I’m a transitioning male to a female transgender person, so I was born a male, now becoming a female. I’m not ashamed of what and who I am, although I have lost a marriage and some friends and relatives along this journey.
I turned to the world of entertainment to heal the pain of loneliness and being unwanted. I started to write and learn the ways of storytelling and crafting imagination into a form of communication. I have always loved the art of film and all that it is and what it can be. It was what I needed to survive the dark times, the times when I couldn’t be myself and had to lie to the world. See after my marriage ended I was just surviving one day to the next. I had to be a man because housing and jobs and other opportunities weren’t really open to people who were like me being transgendered.
So, I started to write and study filmmaking and continued on.
I don’t know if it was fear of death from the invisible enemy (the virus) or the way it tore up our world both mentally and economically. Whatever it was I felt a deep feeling of mortality, thinking that if I touched the wrong thing or forgot to wash something, I would be another victim. I can remember how I have given up that part of me just to survive life.
Now I was regretting what I had done. I was missing a part of myself that I thought had gone away, that I thought I made go away to survive. I needed to be what I was, I needed to be her again. So began the slow process of once again beginning to transition both body and soul back to who I truly am.
Then came a point when my hours were cut severely due to the places around my city closing down, some for good. I was depressed and couldn’t write or create anything, I was hanging my head down both depressed and exhausted from all of the negative news coverage and warnings.
Then I heard a voice. A voice of a positive man came from my earphones and raised my head and I looked at my monitor and there he was…..Rob. I started to listen to this man. I wanted to learn more, his thoughts, and his ideas. Nice, he had a channel on Youtube, awesome, I will now follow.
After that, my creativity started to pop up again. I had extra time now, so I started using the video editing software that was honestly just sitting there, remember I was a writer not too much of a filmmaker, I would make a video, either music or just a short story. So I used stock footage either from a website or youtube. I would just put something together, just to do something.
I could still hear my friend, who was a director of indie movies here in Houston, always tell me, “Stop waiting for someone to discover you and go out and do it yourself.” Yeah I did contests and festivals, but I never went out and shot anything, so now I was going to do just that, but how was I going to do that?
I had grabbed what money I could and started to collect all the gear I could, so I could teach myself to shoot what I needed instead of what I could get. I watched Rob for motivation and positivity. I would eventually learn more about Rob and I would study his movie more. Shot after shot, and how I could be a better filmmaker.
When I found out about Rob’s film festival, I knew I had to do it, no matter what the cost. I wanted to show him that he was an inspiration to me. Flashforward to October 1st, today. I’m proud of what I have shot, is it Gone with the wind or Kramer vs Kramer….no, but I still made this movie.
It’s called “I’m Good.” I wrote it, shot it, made the music for it, I did everything. I hope people will enjoy it. I’m in the mists of making a horror movie, don’t worry I won’t act in it. I will write and shoot it. Sometime next year. Thanks and blessings to you Rob and your house.