NEW MUSIC VIDEO for JAYNE AVAUNT!

"Living Sculptures" as they were called on the set of the "Drowning in You" music video.

Living Sculptures  on the set of the “Drowning in You” music video.

I got the call from Jayne Avaunt almost two years ago about making a music video.

She said, “Girl!! I am finishing my album and I want you to direct a video!” The chosen song changed a few times and when we finally sat down to brainstorm for “Drowning in You” – 18 months later –  three things were clear: I could write any video concept I wanted, but it could not involved her singing on the beach of the ocean with a long flowing dress, and the weirder the better. Check.

Jayne Avaunt - Drowning in You  Video

Jayne and I know each other from drama class circa grade 7, and of our high school graduating class of 300, probably 100 of us are working in our chosen field in the arts: exactly as planned.

Jayne came up from LA at the end of October, we shot the video in Whiterock and on Commercial Drive in Vancouver, and most of the crew at some point asked me, “how do you come up with this stuff?” I don’t know. I secluded myself on Bowen Island for awhile so maybe that did something to me?

The video was finished after New Year and Jayne released it last week!

Drum roll please! Take a look and leave a comment or liket he video on Youtube!

 

Jayne getting ready to tear out your guts!

Jayne getting ready to tear out your guts!

Music videos, Women in the Director’s Chair, and FARGO

A lot has happened in the last month.

I returned to Vancouver from a week of meetings in Toronto, to shoot a music video within a few days of arriving, to then prep for and take a 10 day workshop as one of 8 directors in the Women in the Director’s Chair (WIDC) Story Incubation module 2.0 (where I workshopped a feature I am slated to direct), only to fly out to Calgary the day the workshop finished to begin my first ever job on a union TV show (FARGO) as none other than the flashiest of jobs…The Camera Trainee.

The music video:

Amy Belling (DOP), Hannah Epperson (Musician), Brianne Nord-Stewart

Amy Belling (DOP), Hannah Epperson (Musician), Brianne Nord-Stewart

Was a success. It is in the editing room right now. Being left to percolate as I make not very good money running batteries and cable while Calgary is determined to stay in Winter. It is a blizzard outside.

WIDC:

I didn’t really take any pictures except for this one.

The view from our farewell brunch at WIDC 2014

The view from our farewell brunch at WIDC 2014

I learned a lot. So much my mind was overflowing with information and ideas and some…feelings. Hence the needed brain break which made winter in Calgary sound very appealing. I am glad I am here though.

I do have a couple of cool bosses.

2nd Unit all the way.

Schane (1st AC) and Mark (2nd AC) - Camera Department

Schane (1st AC) and Mark (2nd AC) – Camera Department

And then on top of that, I just used my day off to whip together a video pitch and application package for my short COUGARS CRUISING, to finally get made. Here’s hoping Optik TV’s Story Hive grants are stoked on the idea of COUGARS CRUISING, an adventure dramedy that follows Una, who when diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, will stop at nothing to find her orgasm for the very first time!

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"Living Sculptures" as they were called on the set of the "Drowning in You" music video.

AND THEN…A music video I directed in Fall 2013 was released. Read all about that HERE.

You can expect a new music video with Hannah Epperson

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Today marks an achievement. My first ever production grant. Ever.

I would like to extend a huge thank you to the folks at Public Records for offering grants of up to $7500 to musician and filmmaking teams in British Columbia and Alberta.

Myself and violinist and vocalist Hannah Epperson, have been awarded one of Public Records Winter 2014 awards. You can look forward to a conceptual solo dance video for her song, SHADOWLESS, to be released in early May.

You can also expect other delicious cinematic concoctions from us to follow up our first, “Where Do Songs Come From?

Follow Hannah: @hannah_epperson www.HannahEpperson.ca

The comedic short, “Trolls” Finally available for streaming online!

TROLLS at NSI ONLINE

Well it has been a long time waiting.  My short film “Trolls”, a comedy about two young kids trying to navigate and define was “doing it” really means, is available online at the National Screen Institute Online Film Festival. Released to film festival audiences around the world in 2009, then distributed for TV and VOD broadcast ever since, “Trolls” is a film that launched me into the world as a comedic writer/director/producer/editor. I am still doing all of those things, and I am still making comedy.

The NSI Online Film Festival offers three awards to the film programmes quarterly: Best Film, Best Comedy, and the Fearless Female Director Award. “Trolls” is eligible to win all three. These are cash awards with the smallest being $500, and the largest at $2500.

Thanks to everyone who watched then, and to those who will share it now.

Head to the NSI site HERE, and watch the film for FREE! Leave a comment at the bottom of that page too!

Trolls (2009) 7 min.

Trolls (2009) 7 min.

Banff, Alberta here I come!

What better way to start of a new year of an emerging film career than by being 1 of 8 female directors chosen for the Women in the Director’s Chair: Aspects of Production & Post Production?

Woody & Dave, My “bosses” when I was a grip/electric trainee in 2008

I am lucky to be one of those 8 women.

Between January 15th-19th I’ll be hanging around The Banff Centre for one of the country’s best professional development workshops. In 2008 I attended the workshop as a “trainee” – an entry level position – while I was still attending university. I am thrilled to return as a director and workshop one of my upcoming scripts in development.

Wish me luck!

Drowning in JAYNE AVAUNT’s new music video

At the end of October I had the great pleasure to write and direct a music video for one of my oldest friends, Jayne Avaunt, an LA based singer/songwriter whose music stylings are a smorgasbord of dancey pop beats.

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In December we’ll release the video for “Drowning in You” – the second track off her debut EP, March. Until then, enjoy a small glimpse at the shenanigans of our second morning on location at Vancouver’s own Charlatan pub, on Commercial Drive.

Jayne asked for an unconventional video that was kind of, “…well, weird”. You can look forward to everything from opera singing bartenders, to some very fishy circumstances.  We definitely let Jayne get her hands dirty on this one.

Check out Jayne Avaunt on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, and listen to her EP, March, on iTUNES.

Rising Star Rykka is campaigning because NATURE ROCKS!

rykka- BOBCbannerLast week I had the privilege of what I hope will be a long relationship in making videos for a badass talented lady, Rykka.

It all started when Rykka saw the video I made with one Hannah Epperson, and then looked me up and asked if I could help her with a campaign video for the charity, The David Suzuki Foundation, she is supporting. Did I mention Rykka is in the Top 20 of the Peak Performance Project?

Head to her campaign page and check out all the musical perks for donating!

There is no witty and appropriate title for the topic of “Killing”

kidskillingkids_mka_theatre

While I typically focus on news about my own work here, it is after all the main page of my website about…ahem…myself, I’ve lately been backsliding into the Media History student mindset while consuming media work around me.

I would like to draw your attention to a theatre production/documentary involving an Australian Company in the Phillipines starring grade 9 actors, Kids Killing Kids.

A student is on his knees, begging the noisy crowd gathered on all sides for his life. If they vote for him to die, then the privilege of execution is given over to a competition winner, a lucky patron drawn from the audience earlier that evening. Night after night the scene is repeated, and each night the crowd is bigger, rowdier, and the contest for his life ever more grotesque.

It’s a scene from the stage version of Battle Royale, the infamous blood-soaked pulp novel by Japanese author Koushun Takami…The stage version was adapted for young Filipino theatre company Sipat Lawin by four Australian writers ‑ Sam Burns-Warr, Jordan Prosser, Georgie McAuley and David Finnigan.” - Read the entire article bu Andrew Furhman, AU Timeout, HERE

And then further to and a more widely known documentary film, The Act of Killing, Executive Produced by venerable director, Werner Herzog.

the-act-of-killing-poster1

The Act of Killing is about killers who have won, and the sort of society they have built. Unlike ageing Nazis or Rwandan génocidaires, Anwar and his friends have not been forced by history to admit they participated in crimes against humanity. Instead, they have written their own triumphant history, becoming role models for millions of young paramilitaries. The Act of Killing is a journey into the memories and imaginations of the perpetrators, offering insight into the minds of mass killers. And The Act oKilling is a nightmarish vision of a frighteningly banal culture of impunity in which killers can joke about crimes against humanity on television chat shows, and celebrate moral disaster with the ease and grace of a soft shoe dance number.” – Read the full synopsis HERE

I have yet to watch either of these production and I will likely only see The Art of Killing unless by some miracle Kids Killing Kids goes on tour or I find myself back in Australia in the immediate future, but I have a feeling these works are very similar in a discussion and dissection of human nature, and human behaviour given certain circumstances. I’m excited yet also fearful of what might be uncovered.

I wanted to share these two pieces because two of the Australian writers behind Kids Killing Kids, Jordan Prosser & Sam Burns-Warr, happened to be classmates and/or good friends of mine while I studied film in Melbourne in 2008 – and both crewed and had small cameos in my short film, Why I Fired My Secretary. The 13 other people in that class are some of the most dedicated and talented filmmakers I have had the pleasure to meet, and working with them on dozens of films in the 10 months I was there was a major influence on the quality and confidence I have in my own work.

I highly encourage everyone to follow the theatre and film work of both Jordan and Sam who collaborate more often than not. They are writers, directors actors and well, annoyingly talented. They have a number of hilarious comedic videos you can tickle your fancy with as well so follow them on Facebook.com/jordanandsam as they are freaking intelligent, extremely entertaining, and if nothing else, “really really good looking.”

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Insider’s footage of Cayley Thomas in Studio!

While approaching the August 31st release of her first EP, Cayley Thomas is showing off some of her in studio behind the scenes footage filmed and edited by yours truly.

Check it out and make sure to head over to bandcamp and buy the EP!

Components of “With Cold Tongues” to show at Helen Belkin Satellite Gallery for SWARM

Swarm-Logo2-300x65Components of my short film in progress, With Cold Tongues, an adaptation of a Richard Van Camp short story, will be exhibited at Satellite Gallery in downtown Vancouver, as part of the exhibition, Ten Thousand Suns, curated by UBC Curatorial Studies Candidate, Jeremy Jaud.

Please mark in your calendars the SWARM opening event: September 12, 5:30-9pm!
Exhibition dates: September 13-October 26, 2013

Ten Thousand Suns is “a new group exhibition that features works in sculpture, audio, video and performance by Rebecca BelmoreTanya Tagaq, Luke Parnell, Guadalupe Martinez, Abbas Akhavan, Jamie Look, Ali Ahadi, Erin Siddall, Carlos Colín and Brianne Nord-Stewart. These artists investigate our past and present relationships to resource extraction, the body and land.

“The exhibition brings together contemporary artists from British Columbia, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Ontario, Argentina, Iran and Mexico.  Exploring effacement, memory and remembering this exhibition will consider the layered interconnections of policy with respect to resource-based development projects in Canada and globally, modern technology and artistic practice.”

www.satellitegallery.ca

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