Saturday, 25 February 2012

It is done. Alex and I finished the film a couple of days ago for Haunted Landscapes, the script is now tinkered with and complete and I have gone through everything as best I can. Now I just need to book my train.

Now its done, it feels much better, an obvious statement I realise, but an important step for me to grapple with my next project. Often, when I am accumulating ideas, images and texts it often gets to the point where the waters are so muddied I wonder if anything will ever be resolved and with the added stress of working with film for the first time, I am amazed that I have managed to get it done with days to spare. Couldn't have done it without the knowledge of Mr P.

My next task is to re-read properly the script for my first major film work and I am nervous. A much bigger project with a complex cast and multiple identities to grapple with as well as visiting and looking for venues that are appropriate whilst hiring actors to hold it all together. Oh lordie. I haven't been able to give it any time for fear of muddling it up with the Haunted Landscapes, but now the time is here.

Amidst this I have decided to move from my current studio to a location that is nearer to home in an attempt to be efficient with both my time and costings. I have not been able to concentrate on making a significant body of work outside of a project for the last year or so, and I will need to be nearer Norfolk for the next few months to get the next film in order, so mixed emotions about leaving Cambridge and moving studios back to Suffolk. Lets hope it works out.

So, head around a complex cast, I will hint at what happens over the next few weeks and I will maintain the drawings for Empire as I go..exciting times.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Does anyone have an eagle?

I have just returned from a week of teaching at West Dean College in West Sussex. This was the first of three pre-booked teaching sessions and I have to say I loved it. After the initial worries of knowing how the place works in terms of practicality, the 'where is?' and the 'this is what we are going to try to achieve' moments, I had a great week sharing knowledge with a diverse group of teachers, students, experimentalists and practitioners who made the whole experience really enjoyable. I am back in another month.
I am still finalising the last things for my talk at the end of the month having just prepped a talk for South Essex College on Monday. Its odd how things like presentations come in at the same time.
The filming is still taking shape with the great help of Alex Pearl, who has allowed me much time out of his practice to pursue the art of film making. I have realised that I have more confidence in being a director rather than a film maker, but we will just have to wait and see what happens in the end.
I am still drawing mostly, which has allowed me time to think about where my work is heading and I have to say that this is the most excited I have felt for a while although still following the free fall experience of making new work to tight deadlines to new audiences. Talking of which does anyone have an eagle?

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

I am currently writing the script and making new work for a presentation at The University of London at the end of the month. Using appropriated texts from three sources, I am weaving a new narrative that is suggestive of the complexities and subsequent breakdown within the mind of John Ruskin. I have employed an actor to read the narrative and will be showing a film and some stills between each reading.

Ruskin was a complex man, on the one hand he developed and maintained deep and complex thoughts, on the other he showed his frailties in babbling non- sensical text. The theme throughout will be based on the hauntings within his subconscious coming to the fore.

Because of my possible Ruskin haunting at Brantwood House in the summer when I stayed in the room that Ruskin had his most major breakdown where there was a true sense of the man himself being present, I have based the content on his relationship with his cousin Joan, his lectures to little girls about the value of crystals and crystalisation and the opaque referencing to fireflies that Ruskin taunts his audience in many of his written and oral pieces over time. I will include a number of objects, landscape and visual references to the content of these written works as well as include drawings, film and sound.

This is a new venture for me and a precursor to making a large film based piece later on in the spring. Lets hope it goes well.

In other matters, it was great to meet Margo Spiritus and Rebecca Wilson from Saatchi last week and was very flattered by their comments about my work overall. Both have been very supportive with features, comments and interviews other the last year and it was great to meet them both in person to say thank you.

I will be talking to BA students and staff at Southend College in a couple of weeks about my work (drop me a line if you want an invite) and it will be great to get back in touch with everyone from TAP and beyond.

Anyway enough chatter, I have a script to write..

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