Making Progress Makers’ Films: Filming with Patricia in Caithness

2 May 2011 in Crafts Blog, Visual Arts & Crafts

Ok, so stupidly this will be a photoless blog entry. I got so carried away with the moving pictures I completely forgot to get any not moving ones. Lesson officially learned. Although this is very much in keeping with the rest of the entry as it was a day of learning lessons all round.

For example, lesson number one: Never assume that it will be blustery windy day in Caithness, despite overwhelming meteorological and historical evidence to suggest that it probably will be. With all our best laid plans firmly in place, Patricia, myself and Brian (Patricia’s very patient and obliging model) set out one Sunday morning in April to set them in motion. And I am always very aware that my hindsight can be a bit too rosy so I was very pleased to find that the location we had decided upon before was just as I remembered from my previous visit: striking and dramatic and beautiful and lots of other wonderful adjectives that I am not clever enough to summon to my fingers right now. But as I mentioned before, we had banked on the usual Caithness weather conditions so, although I was very pleased to be spending a day working in the glorious sunshine with some very nice people, it also threw a little bit of a spanner in the creative works. But as the proper Scots that we are (two native, one honourary), we were not going to let something like unforeseen weather conditions get in our way and so,  from the word go, we set about adapting our original plans to tie in with the most wonderful un-Scottish conditions that were thrust upon us.

From this moment on the day went smoothly and enjoyably (well I speak for myself when I say this. Patricia’s model friend Brian might possibly be one of the most patient and good humoured people I have ever met and can be sure to expect lots of wonderful karmic recourse for the amount of time he was happy to spend shrouded in black wool and tarpaulin on such a sunny spring day).  Patricia had brought lots of examples of her work with her so we had lots to work with and, due to the much aforementioned sunshine beating down on us, the effects of the light on the glass and metal work were really beautiful and it wasn’t long before the day was drawing to a close and we had all we came for and there was nothing left to do but eat the picnic we had forgotten to eat in the middle of the day because we were so immersed in the day’s purpose.

And, after all our initial weather based turmoil, Patricia made the very excellent point that had the conditions been as bleak as we had hoped for we would never have survived being out and about in it for so many hours. So retrospectively I definitely feel that it all happened for the best.

Upon my return from Caithness all that was left was to edit the footage into something that would reflect the enthusiasm and vision of the day and hopefully the final video has done just that. Amanda and her critical eye came to see me towards the end of this editing process and her advice, as both an objective audience and an industry professional, was invaluable to the final realisation of the film and will most certainly come in so useful for the three films that are yet to be made.

And I’d like to finish with a backdated wellwishing for Patty with her “Bones & Beasts” exhibition, I’m sure it’s brilliant and I can’t wait to take a trot up to Inverness to see it for myself!