Just went out filming on my Super8 in the woods near where I live. Couldn't decide which film stock to use! Opted for Ektachrome 100D, and brought my wide angle lens along with me. It's a beautiful sunny day and the light comes down through the trees like drops of translucent sun batter! The green of the forest is so multiple, and shifting constantly with the sun and shadows, and filming on Auto B and with the shutter open sometimes too is ace. Spinning round with the lens above my upturned eye until I nearly fall over. Ace fun! Getting inside a tree that hides its interior from the light, and letting the camera catch time in the process of moving, and with it, light... I have some 16mm cameras, but I still favour using Super8. It's really nice to feel in touch with a camera, like I know it well and am discovering it as part of my body. Sometimes it feels very intuitive. Sometimes, though, it's as if I'm forcing myself to film when it doesn't feel right, and normally in those situations I end up feeling I've wasted a film, or feel dissatisfied, like I've tried to 'capture' instead of co-exist with what I'm filming. I made a film with my friend Paul about a week ago, and it was completely edited in camera, and fully made in the present, spontaneously, and feels right and somehow complete in itself but still open. It's called "Chrysalis".
Paul had created an installation of drapes hanging from ceiling to floor, creating a kind of material maze, and he performed video projections live for me as I wandered around it. Then suddenly it felt very strong that I needed to film, so I asked him to perform the piece for me again, while I filmed it using my nizo and lots of its brilliant functions, to abstract it, and so the result is very far from a straightforwardly filmed 'document' of the installation, but feels instead like a completely fresh work we made together, and watching it back, we felt it was like something trying to emerge from a multi-layered shroud of cotton-like material, like being inside some kind of woven web or shedding a skin, and it suddenly became very clear that the film had managed to convey the sense of the installation, even though it was created in a completely different way. I love that. The material, form, and subject all seem to fit together in a true way. The mode of its creation too. And the fact that it was fully in the moment and complete in itself, it won't be edited, and we are making a soundtrack for it, composed of loops of the sounds made by the Super8 camera alone. It's funny - I've been working on a film project for absolutely ages, and was feeling like I had too much footage, from 5 years of filming and was getting lost, not knowing how to start to help the film take its shape. This "Chrysalis" creation happened in 30 minutes, and I processed and watched it back straight away, so it was all done in less than 2 hours. It's amazing how it has actually come to enact the very nature of a chrysalis, in that it has unblocked my being stumped with filmmaking, like a butterfly emerging from its chrysalis, and it just all feels very right. It's the first time I've really felt this, and it's really wowed me! It also reminds me how brilliant it can be to make something together with somebody else. A lot of my filming and making I do alone, so it was a cool departure from that. So anyway, I'm writing this post because it's personal and what I'm thinking at the moment, and not something about what CK is planning next etc... I realised that the last few posts have been a bit impersonal, and wanted to redress the balance. I'm doing this blog, and all the CK stuff, for personal reasons, and it's through the personal, I believe, that I can reach the social. I'm very into that idea. I think it's good that CK is a personal expression, not an institutional one, and I will keep it that way.