I’m not sure if it’s good or bad that I keep finding little films all over the place. This one was on my server, ready to be podcast, but somehow slipped through the cracks for a few months. I made it in Dawson City in the spring for part of their One-Minute Film Challenge. Rozalind MacPhail made the soundtrack. It was shot on 16mm film. In you’re in Victoria next weekend, check out CineVic’s Sweet 16 Film Celebration, November 6th, 7th and 8th. Deco Dawson will be visiting and giving an artist’s talk, and a film I made last year, called “Alone” will be screening on 16mm.
Back from Dawson City now, still trying to catch up on everything I left behind in April.
The “Experiment” workshop at MediaNet is starting this weekend, and I’m still trying to get everything ready. I think there are still a couple spots left in the workshop if anyone wants to take it. On another note, I’m off to Toronto in a month-and-a-bit to go to Phil Hoffman’s Film Farm. I’m giddy about the whole thing.
The Dawson City One-Minute Film Challenge went beautifully last weekend. We ended up with 25 films for the screening. A really great show and get-together, all sorts of little gems. Here is a film I made for it, called “boots.” Rozalind MacPhail made the music.
This is an abstract piece, shot on 16mm colour film, and transferred with an early-80’s telecine, that lags a little with the colour channels. I think it’s quite obvious what it actually is, but visually interesting nonetheless. A part of the journey. David Parfit made the soundtrack. You can find all sorts of his wonderful creations here: www.davidparfit.com
This is a photogram piece, on black and white 35mm film. It was made during a workshop with Kerry Laitala during this year’s AntiMatter Film Festival, using electrical components, nuts, bolts, screws, and a mini cassette tape. The soundtrack was made on my circuit-bent Realistic keyboard.
This month at Open Space: The Deceleration Chamber.
The Deceleration Chamber is concerned with two entangled ideas: the elasticity of time—especially slow time—and how time is specifically experienced when one is away from familiar surroundings: on tour, traveling or on vacation. Encountering the unfamiliar, being lost or disorientated affects how time is perceived, how data is recorded and recollected, and how all of us choose the mode by which we measure, mark or experience the passage of time.
Artists Scott Amos, Frédérick Belzile, Scott Conarroe, Nathalie Daoust, and Daniel Tom explore differential time scales and refer to time not only as interval or measurement, but also as an active element in the construction of art. The Deceleration Chamber offers compelling time studies that directly and indirectly play off the habits, schedules and the erratic timetables of permanent and transitory populations.
It’s up until August 16th at 510 Fort St. in Victoria, from 10 to 5 Tuesday through Saturday.
With the help of Brian Macdonald and the the staff and volunteers at Open Space, I installed a 9 channel video installation for the show titled “Our Victoria.” This is a clip from the ninth channel. Colin Hander and Mike Wolske did the sound.
Here’s the little Blurb I wrote up about the piece.
Victoria is a city of postcard images, but the most impressive things never seem to make it to the printer. The Inner Harbour and the Parliament Buildings provide the background for millions of snapshots a year; They are the basis of visitors’ memories of our city. Although they are a part of our city, they are not the places that we frequent, the Victoria that we know and love. They are the parts that we show to others. The magical parts of the city we keep to ourselves.
When visiting other places, time passes differently, more slowly, you take notice of little details: the weathered bricks on a building, the intricacies of power lines, the reflections in windows. Everyday objects and places are rendered extraordinary by simply taking the time to observe them.
Our hometowns have similar delicate features, but we seldom notice. They are simply distractions that we pass by.
Our Victoria is a nine channel video installation, made to emulate old home movies. Although filmed in 2006, it looks as though it’s from past decades. The nine televisions are nine individual rolls of film, raw and unedited to emulate the frenetic nature of home movies and the raw memories they capture. It is an intimate look into the places that only the most adventurous visitors will see, the places that you won’t see in brochures, the places that have not yet been reduced to postcards.
This new film is for the “Seek Cover” show tonight at The Project. The idea behind Seek Cover is to create a new artwork (performance, painting, anything goes) based on an existing artwork. I made a film, inspired by Stan Brakhage’s “Mothlight.” I collected all of the dead bugs out of the windowsills in the house, and our neighbour’s house, dissected them, and taped them to strips of 16mm film. flys, bees, a spider, a moth, and a few giant mosquito-lookin’ things. I felt a little weird doing it, but the results are pretty cool. I think part of the charm of it is the texture created by the tape, and the air bubbles and fingerprints it trapped. I’m calling the piece “Flypaper.” In the spirit of Brakhage, I didn’t put a musical soundtrack to it, instead I just recorded the sound of the 16mm projector as I was digitizing it.
Made this one for the Victoria Film Festival’s “My Victoria” Film contest. They wanted a one-minute Victoria-centric film. While wandering around the immerweb, trying to figure out what to do for the film, I stumbled into the the raciest historical tidbit about my quaint little town. It’s about an architect named Francis Rattenbury. Adultery. Murder. Juicy stuff. Here is the film I made:
I ended up winning the “Capital History Award” for it, and did a little interview with the Susan McLean from the Provincial Capital Commission. I found it online here: http://www.bcpcc.com/pages/news.htm
Rattenbury scandal provides fodder
for Capital History Award winner
March 2008 – Not only did Francis Rattenbury design Victoria’s signature buildings, including the Parliament Buildings, the Empress Hotel, the Crystal Garden and the CP Steamship terminal, but the renowned architect was a key character in the raciest scandal of the 1920s and 30s.
The steamier side of Rattenbury — from leaving his wife for a younger woman to his murder in England by his chauffer who was having an affair with his second wife, through to her stabbing death — provided a smorgasbord of tantalizing historical tidbits and fascinating imagery for Victoria filmmaker Scott Amos.
Combining archival photographs and new video footage, Amos pieced together Rattenbury’s sordid final years for his short film “Victim of an Evil Seductress” to win the Provincial Capital Commission’s Capital History Award at this year’s Victoria Film Festival.
Thanks to the internet, Scott was able to conduct much of his research on the renowned architect, accessing historical information and archived photographs. Using a 1952 16-mm Bolex camera, he began filming. Working out of his basement, Scott processed the film in buckets of chemicals, deliberately scratching the black and white film to make it look old.
Originally from Ontario, Amos hitchhiked to Victoria 10 years ago, with a guitar on his back and $20 in his pocket. It’s the story films are made of and was the topic of his second film entered in this year’s festival entitled “Waiting.”
Earning some money busking in Bastion Square, he eventually earned a writing degree from the University of Victoria, where one of his professors handed him a video camera for a film project. It was a pivotal moment in Scott’s life. “I got myself into huge debt buying equipment,” he laughed. He also started making short films.
Now a Teacher’s Assistant in UVic’s Fine Arts Department and working at Medianet, a video co-op business, Amos is a five-year veteran of the Victoria Film Festival. The My Victoria category suits his style, he says, providing an avenue to show off his work. “I make a lot of Island-centric movies.”
“The festival is a great way to be exposed to artistic work that you wouldn’t normally see,” he said. “There’s a lot of local and Canadian content and it’s great to see what’s happening in my field.”
The My Victoria competition is an opportunity for local artists to have their work shown on the Big Screen and to expose people to the unique voices of the local independent film community, he added. It also provides an incentive to film a changing world, he noted. Amos is the first to admit the world, as most people see it, isn’t his cup of tea. “The real world doesn’t interest me,” he said. “I live it every day so I don’t need to film it. I’d rather film a world that doesn’t exist or to see the existing world in a way I’ve never seen it before.”
But add an experimental twist and it’s award time for Amos.
This started as an old educational film called “I am Joe’s Spine.” And then I wrecked it a bunch. I buried myself in my basement lab, and listened continuously to the new Run Chico Run CD that I got. It’s called “Rocket Surgery” and it’s fantastic. Thankfully, the band has let me use a snippit of their song “Slow” to accompany the film, so you can hear how cool it is yourself. Their myspace is here, and their website is here, but I have no idea where to buy the album. I got it at their show…it’s on green vinyl too! Did you hear that?
GREEN VINYL. Badass.
“I Am Fine” was made by scratching at the old film, with a bit of chemical manipulation, and then some compositing and digital effects on the ol’ computer. I’m hoping the Chicos’ll let me make them a music video over the summer. we’ll see.
and, like I promised, here is the Quicktime version.
Round number next in the film-a-week project.
This is some 16mm film that I found in my basement, that I had shot, but never processed. Now that I can look at it, although I shot it for no particular reason, it seems to have some meaning to it. It’s a little cliche, so I couldn’t bring myself to say it outright, but it’s there in the footage. It has to do with perception…or something like that. Perhaps the creepiest thing I’ve ever made. You were warned. Film by Scott Amos, Music by Mike Wolske.
And over the next week, I’ve decided to repost all the past episodes in Quicktime format for a video podcast. I just can’t handle how bad YouTube mangles everything.
This is a little experiment I did, making inkblots with clear acrylic and india ink. I pressed as many copies as I could, then took photographs of them, and lined them up, overlayed and composited them. I threw a little motion blur on them too, to smooth out everything. Some interesting textures.
Part 13 of the 2008 film-a-week project. Film by Scott Amos, music by Mike Wolske (altered by Scott Amos)
And a higher quality Quicktime