Shinrinyoku is the product of an impromptu dance session in the New England region of the United States. Tom and Mayumu asked me to film, and I agreed on the condition that someone else edited.
After, we reviewed the footage and Tom convinced me to edit the piece, anyway. I agreed, and to my pleasant surprise, it has since appeared in several festivals.
Perhaps the funnest story about Shinrinyoku is that I happened to be passing through Prague, and I ran into Tom--to which he informed me that our film would be featured in Jerusalem at the same time that I would be there later in the same tour. The very day I arrived in Jerusalem, I walked into the building where the film was playing...and realized I had no idea in the hundreds of rooms where I should go to; Tom hadn't mentioned that part. After several minutes of searching, I heard the Levi's (the musician and the second shooter) music, and I followed it to where our film was being featured. What a surreal experience walking in on an audience watching my work in a theatre half way around the world.
This film has appeared in the Contact Dance International Film Fest in Ontario, the Machol Shalem International Dance Festival in Jerusalem, and the Outlet Dance Project in New Jersey.
Cervantes, Western Australia
I work frequently with Marlo, and I'm one of the luckiest photographers alive for it. We've spent most our energy on creating photo content rather than video, but recently, we've begun to shift our focus into a new direction. Sessions Everywhere is a small part of a bigger vision, a name for playful movement sessions that happen outside of the studio. Each environment presents a new challenge, and adapting a movement vocabulary to it is part of the fun. My goal as the videographer is to similarly adapt my shooting style to the environment and the mover, playing with light, wind, and surfaces in my own visual way--while tripping and falling through the sand... We had to hike through the bush to get to this location, making noises to scare off potential snakes and unknowns, but it was worth it.
Impromptu is a theme, apparently. I was asked to be an athlete in this, but I ended up brainstorming with Nadia and coming up with an idea. We brought the film to life in two, go-with-the-flow, takes--which resulted with me (of course) breaking the pole and ending the shoot. Everyone involved didn't know anything but the basic idea until Nadia and I yelled out directions as the story continued. The energy of the freestyle was so intense; we knew we had something special. "C4" shot the footage on his Sony alpha and handed the footage over to Hansabu, the owner of the gym and the pole camp I and the others were teaching at.
A year passed.
Nothing was done with the footage. I asked for it, and I edited the film in a fury over the course of a week. I'm quite proud of how it came out, as pulling limited shots together into something resembling a planned shoot was difficult. This piece was designed for pole dancers, but is well worth the watch.
Heder is a film that resulted in that random meeting with Tom in Prague, and then in Jerusalem, that I earlier mentioned in the Shinrinyoku description. He told me that Shinrinyoku had done very well, and was extremely well received. He and Mayumu asked if I would fly out to Japan and film his newest personal project--Heder--in a month's time. Of course I dropped everything and agreed. Tom is a creative genius bordering on madness, and this entire performance was planned with several levels of meaning behind it. Anything he creates is interesting and challenging and highly artistic. He asked that I shoot with that mad-genius method in mind, sending me examples of psychological genre examples in dance films. I did my best, and within the short amount of time I was still in Japan, our short cut of Heder got two competing offers for his performance. The process of this first actually-planned shoot was also Tom's first actually-planned shoot, too. The full film is expected to be out in 2018.
M I R R O R M O
Ah, yet another impromptu shoot. I hadn't planned to film, but I had my usual photography gear with me. I put my settings in, and since I had no lighting with me, I chose to take advantage of the dark and large space we were in (a room in the famous Sadler's Wells Theatre). I'd planned to shoot Marlo, the dancer, in a strictly "useful" fashion rather than artistic, but she kept drifting off frame, or hugging one corner of the screen. In post-processing, I realized that instead of being annoyed at this problem, I could create this kaleidoscope effect. I rather like the vintage-simple effect of this edit.