“Can you just slowly caress that mound of moss….draw your hand lovingly across it…”
It can be difficult to explain what I do and how I work to people who haven’t seen it. I blow glass, but don’t use furnaces or ovens. I don’t need a large space, just a small bench with a relatively small but hot gas-fired burner. I am often closer to the hot glass than might be imagined, and the result, while durable, is generally finer and perhaps more detailed than first expected.
This can all be hard to convey in a single image. So, when I had the chance recently to have a short film made showing the way that I work and the inspiration behind what I do, I jumped at the opportunity!
On a chilly day in March I was joined by two filmmakers, Steve and Bridget, who would be spending the day with me in my studio, capturing the glassmaking process on camera with the aim of creating a film of just a few minutes in length.
Steve and Bridget were brilliant from start to finish, seeming to instinctively understand what needed to be conveyed to the viewer, and what a short film could express. They were great at taking my vague thoughts on how the film should be and guiding them into something workable. They spent time beforehand making sure they understood my working process so that when it came to filming, they were already well prepared. They also provided a very helpful guide to how they expected the filming day to go, with timings and what they expected to achieve – and stuck to those timings! I found the experience relaxed and very positive. Knowing in advance what the structure and contents of the film would be allowed me to prepare any components that might be helpful to have on hand during filming.
I found the filmmaking process fascinating. I’m becoming used to arranging product pictures and to having photographs taken of the flameworking process in the studio. Making a film is a very different thing. Much more equipment was needed, and on a typically grey and slightly rainy day in mid-March, it was disconcerting to be working in what looked like warm sunshine (without the warmth!) thanks to the studio lighting brought in by the crew. A photographer is capturing that one special moment; a film maker seems to be playing a longer game, taking a series of movements from which an essence will be distilled.
You can see the resulting film here – which I’m incredibly pleased with! I like its tone and style, and feel that it has captured the essence of my work, and what drives it, incredibly well.
Steve, (firstname.lastname@example.org), has over 20 years’ professional filmmaking experience behind him. He is currently taking on more freelance work, offering an affordable, bespoke filmmaking service to small businesses and individuals to promote and enhance their business presence.