“In everything I do, I endeavour to espouse and inspire enthusiastic novelty. My intention is for that to come through loud and clear in my interactions with everybody I meet. Especially you.” – Burning Dan
Last year I spent the very end of my J-term in Park City Utah, by myself, at Sundance.
Why? Well aside from my overwhelming desire to spend all my time watching off-beat indie films and animated shorts – this was a trip spurred on by an overwhelming sense that I, Mary-Caitlin Hentz, was floating. I had gotten into a pattern of artistic passivity, subconscious complacency. I wasn’t writing, I wasn’t creating; I was asleep. I was stuck with one foot in college and the other in daydreams that sat at least a full year outside my reach. I was frustrated with my transience and my perceived inability to be doing what I’ve always wanted to do.
So I packed a suitcase, bought a ticket, and left.
Days go by, and all of a sudden I’m getting my sparkle back, that insatiable need to put words on paper, to paint, to sing, to swim. Screening after screening, lecture after lecture, bar conversations and sidewalk talk with people like me, people who can’t imagine another path or course ahead of them – people who know themselves too well to fight their daydreams.
This wholeness, however, didn’t reach it’s full potential until the very end of my trip. The night I found Lexy and the rest of the hitRECord team. The very second I met Lexy, a whimsical mess of red lipstick and 40’s flair, I knew it was the beginning of a lifelong friendship. She shimmered and smiled like a disney princess, her spirit overtaking everyone she met with optimism and beauty – she’s the one that introduced me to the endless possibilities of the world of remix culture.
Her boyfriend Joe, an actor, had started a hitRECord five years earlier with the help of his brother (Burning) Dan and friends. The idea behind the website is stated by Joe as such:
“We create and develop art and media collaboratively here on our site. So rather than just exhibiting and admiring each other’s work as isolated individuals, we gather here to collectively work on projects together. Videos, writing, photography, music, anything — we call them all RECords. Now and then, when I think something we’ve made has come out especially well, I approach the traditional entertainment industry to turn our work into money-making productions; and then we share any profits with the contributing artists.”
I logged on, and the passivity dissolved. hitRECord allows us to work together as artists and as people to create lasting relationships and beauty across oceans and time-zones, culture and class -this is what I had been looking for all along. A playground for my own overactive imagination, were whimsy and passion are born and bred, upheld and revered.