A baton twirler has one final practice during the day – Bec Sandrine is set to perform that night. Visually compelling, this rhythmic performance entices the viewer into its clutches. Rose Hendry’s In the Fog, In the Flame screened as part of the Music Video strand at ASFF 2016.
A: How did you first get involved in creating a music video for Bec Sandridge?
RH: Bec wanted to spread her Australian wings so she left home and headed to Glasgow. This in itself was amazing to me, it showed some guts. She busked in Glasgow and found her way pretty quickly. She is a force and she delicately knows what she wants and through this she came across my cinematographer/other half’s work. He put us in touch and we took it from there.
A: How much do you think that the film showcases an element of collaboration, and if so, how did this feed into the creative process?
RH: There are so many moments in the process of filmmaking that are a real collaboration – every part with every person. I think collaboration also comes in many guises including practical and physical limitations, in the most positive sense! Limitations and boundaries are good. One of our limitations was access to the interior gym hall which led to us shooting Bec’s performance as a night exterior. This had knock on effects including shortening the time we had to capture Bec’s performance. I think she is such a strong performer I got away with this. I didn’t direct her at all and wanted to see what we got first off. Our collaboration was me watching, her doing. The other collaboration was with Jessica the baton twirler. I have such admiration for the world of Baton Twirling, they are all absolute stellar athletes with a drive and humble attitude that is really infectious. She was an absolute joy to work with and I hope it is just the beginning of a wider creative collaboration.
A: Did you take inspiration from any other music shorts you’ve seen?
RH: I used to go to ballet classes when I was at secondary school and a friend of mine did baton twirling like what is in this video – she actually was a massive part of the casting for this. I was always intrigued by it and witnessed the dedication and hard work that went into it alongside the amazing jewelled outfits. When I saw Emily Kai Bock’s video for Grizzly Bear’s Yet Again it immediately took me back to this memory with all its glitz, sweat and tears. I’ve been really encouraged by Emily Kai Bock’s music videos. The Grimes video came out just as I was out in the open after being in a bubble at Art School. I think it’s important to grab on to a guiding light. I’ve been quite self-reliant when it comes to my practice, I’m working on changing this and reaching out more, so Emily has been that encouraging inspiration to me.
A: How is this project different to your other films?
RH: It was filmed in London, on location, where nowhere else would it highlight more that time equals money! Which is completely different to my short films which were filmed on small sets I designed in unused spaces that I borrowed and had access to over a longer period of time meaning more time spent by myself and friends who I roped into helping me, in turn meaning it’s all made for very cheap – these were labour intensive, and takes longer but you can do more for very little money. Previous to this video I was directing small scale commercial projects so had experience of how to produce something under time and budget constraints on a paired back production. Saying this I would however approach the same kind of project very differently, I learnt a few things from doing it.
A: How did the music shape your direction for the piece?
RH: I’d had the idea about seeing someone practice and fail and then smash a crazy trick they had been trying to nail for a while. The quality of Bec’s voice with the 1980s music production both clicked with the rough idea I had. The structure of the song was the map for the video.
A: How has the landscape of film festivals affected your practice?
RH: In terms of narrative short film I am aware of film length in relation to programming. I love watching short films, music videos and commercials (I love seeing the ads in the cinema before the film, I make sure I get there in time) Film festivals in relation to my practice – I love going to film festivals!
A: What do you have planned in terms of future projects?
RH: I want to make a 10 minute short film, I’m working on that.
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1. Rose Hendry, Bec Sandridge – In the Fog, In the Flame. Courtesy of Vimeo.