I was in Trader Joe’s the other day and when I got to the counter the cashier placed my basket on top of a stack of baskets that were flipped over, he looked at me and said “sorry it’s ghetto” I told him “it’s fine, it just means you’re creative.” Ghetto rigged has been used to describe putting together something when you don’t have the “right” tools.
Sometimes we have to do what we have to do. I was at a shoot with a friend and half of his camera equipment was delayed on another flight and we had to shoot an executive of a huge company that morning. They flew us out to Martha’s Vineyard for the shoot and she only had time in the morning for the interview. So with no real production company on the island where Jaws killed that woman swimming so many summers ago, we had to make do with what we had. We stacked books so the camera could sit on, we used an iPhone to record sound, we set lights on the book self and we made it happen. Because at the end of the day no one watching will say “hey it looks like their lights aren’t on C-stands!” The cashier should know I didn’t care he had to make a makeshift stand, I just wanted to place my basket down so he could scan my stuff.
I would say if you don’t have any ghetto in you, you can’t be an artist because art is repurposing things or ideas into something that wasn’t there before. Without ghetto things, we wouldn’t have jazz, hip-hop or Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless. Godard used a wheelchair instead of a dolly for that film and I think it turned out okay for him.