Processing Paddy

Another Paddy Crean workshop is wrapped, packed, and still being processed by the brains of over a hundred participants. This one was a landmark in many ways; the first without Brad Waller’s presence. The first where staff were given mainstream teaching spots. Several new faculty were in attendance, including RC-Annie and a couple of women from Germany. Lots of regulars absent though, as will happen- more and more over time, as the list of people I think of as part of the Paddy family constantly grows but the number of faculty who will be able to come at any given workshop does not.

I ended up teaching three courses, and assisting a few others; I taught

  • Basic Unarmed on day 1, which was a fairly small class as most participants already had that covered
  • Selling Death, a class I designed to help give actors more ideas and tools to make more interesting, well informed choices about how to play characters dying- and killing, or thinking they face one of the two. This one was a full class, and a popular one. Several students have approached me afterwards to continue the conversation and get references for further reading (I primarily used Col. Grossman’s On Killing and On Combat, Keegan’s Face of Battle, and a few others from my library). I have a feeling this is a workshop class I’ll be further developing and trying to offer again, and/or perhaps turning in to an article sometime.
  • Working Indie Film for the many participants of this workshop who either want to make their own low or no budget movie or have their buddies ask them “Hey, you do stunt stuff right? Can you do that for this movie I want to make?”. While they (and I include myself in this) are not qualified or experienced enough to justify working as a stunt coordinator on a full budget, legit production, there’s tons of these small-fries videos being made that are lucky to get anyone with any stunt or film fighting experience. This class was proposed in the hopes of giving such students a few basic tools to help them in planning out shots, shooting fights as a coordinator or second-unit director or director, and thinking about their place in that “industry”. The time was too short to actually do much shooting though, and I wasn’t as organized with this class.  I know the demand’s still there, and the folks who came said the liked the class, but I know that just for myself, if I do this type of class again (and I probably will) I’ll want to put more time in to course prep.

I also had the deep joy of assisting my Paddy (every two years) friend Ian Rose with a rapier and dagger vs. rapier and cloak class, and assisting student Thomas Potter with a SWAT tactics class he volunteered to lead after one of the instructors had to back out.

Tomorrow’s a (very) long day of travel to get home, so maybe I’ll have time for more updates at that point.



  1. Posted January 5, 2011 at 3:32 am | Permalink

    I’d be interested in the other resources you used for Selling Death. I’ve been doing a lot of writing/brainstorming on related topics lately.

    • Posted January 5, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

      I got some more good recommendations in conversation with one of the other faculty members here as well (Scott Brown, who teaches medieval German swordsmanship)… Maybe I’ll try to throw together a bigger list and share in a future post, once I’ve had time to go through my notes.

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