ADG Perspective

September-October 2017

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Page 10 of 75

editorial P E R S P E C T I V E | S E P T E M B E R / O C TO B E R 2 0 1 7 9 editorial ANOTHER MILESTONE by Michael Baugh, Editor It started in 2007, this full-color PERSPECTIVE, and it has come out in alternate months, six times a year, ever since. This is the sixtieth version, the ten-year anniversary issue. For seventy years, the Guild had wanted to publish its own magazine. The minutes of old Board meetings revisited the idea regularly, but it never got off the ground. Two earlier publications—small, black-and-white, with stapled spines—breathed life for a few months, and then expired, brought down by their editors' need for a day job. During the golden era of the studio Art Departments (a period I saw in its waning in the 1970s at Universal and, to a lesser extent, Columbia Television), newbies like myself could walk through the drafting rooms, astonished at the drawings for all manner of projects, large and small, period and contemporary, filled with gritty realism and wild fantasy. After lunch, we would cruise through the stages, checking sets under construction and fully dressed. It was an extraordinary film school, one that is sadly now closed as we increasingly work separately in Boston or Toronto or New Mexico. The craftspersons then —Art Directors and Illustrators, Scenic Artists and Set Designers—were generous with their knowledge. They shared tricks while working, and in the evenings when bottles of alcohol often appeared from the bottom drawers of Art Department desks. PERSPECTIVE has been my personal obsession. I have designed and constructed each page. I brought it to life ten years ago to become a contemporary version of the studio Art Department, so readers could pour a glass of wine and sit down to see how the newest forms of gritty reality and wild fantasy are brought to life. In essence, though, this magazine has really been created by its authors who have written more than 350 articles and have taken readers behind the scenes to their drafting boards and stages. These writers have been generous, in the same way earlier artists were generous, showing newbies the tricks they have learned. Now I am retiring. This is the last issue I will edit, the end of the longest job I have ever held, a full fifth of my fifty- year working career. PERSPECTIVE has been part of my identity, a central part of my life through so many changes, so many milestones. I continued sporadic Production Design projects at the beginning, but stopped designing films in 2008 and began devoting full-time every other month to this new career as an editor. When my wife Jackie and I began searching for a more idyllic spot to live, I brought PERSPECTIVE along on my laptop to work on while we looked at farms and vineyards. Things changed substantially—and for the better—when the Guild brought in new artists in a half dozen job categories in 2009, and PERSPECTIVE had more crafts to explore. When I moved out of Los Angeles in 2010, I took PERSPECTIVE with me and each issue thereafter has been created in my office here in the home I built on a small farm in Paso Robles. In 2013, Scott Roth asked me if I planned to relinquish the magazine soon, since I had clearly retired from the industry and might want to play golf or sit on the porch. I told him I didn't golf, and my porch was right through the French doors of my office, so I would continue editing PERSPECTIVE until its sixtieth issue, this one, September/October 2017. He didn't believe I would last that long. Sometimes I wasn't sure I would, either. When I lost Jackie three years ago (has it really been that long?), PERSPECTIVE filled many of the empty days that followed, allowing me to push back the grief with busy correspondence and the pressure of deadlines. Four days from now, I will bottle my first wine—a whole ten cases of Grenache Blanc, and pass another milestone. I'll miss editing this magazine, and I'll check the mailbox regularly to see how it grows and changes. I may even submit an occasional article to the new editor. More milestones.

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