Monday, January 29, 2007

The party years

Someone asked me to blog about 'how I got started'- but since I don't necessarily feel I have 'got started' I thought I wouldn't - but then I thought I could blog in stages about how I got to where I am now and then maybe blog about how I got started sometime in the future when it happens (are you still following?)

Let's start with the party years - the whirl of fun and irresponsibility and what-have-you when the mood is blasé and spontaneous. The party years are lucky - things happen easily - opportunities abound - drink flows - dancing goes on til dawn. (ha!)

I finished art school and started being an artist making massive charcoal drawings on pieces of brown paper in my bed-sit in East Dulwich. There was a small advertisement in the local newspaper offering a free video course and I went on it. The small group of us messed around, animating beans and lentils under caption camera and in the edit cut it up with interviews with artists. I was called 'the laughing director'. That video became support material for an application to an Art Council scheme to encourage minority filmmakers. I made a half hour doc about 5 British artists - most of whom have now gone on to great things. With another award, I made an 'anti-narrative' experimental video - shown on C4.

It was a time cram full of private views and launches and parties and openings and previews and screenings and rushes viewings and talks and discussions and so on.

I applied for a one minute film grant and didn't get it. Disappointed I packed my bags and went to Sierra Leone and saw my father again after 20 years. When I came back I was told I had a green-light - the 'lucky' 13th since one of the awards had to be overturned. It was my best yet. Soon afterwards I successfully submitted a 'proper' short film script for a New Directors award.

By now I was certain that making films was what I really, really wanted to do. Ironically this was the time that it started to become difficult.
The free flow of opportunity that I had become accustomed to started to evaporate...


tbc

5 comments:

Facety said...

Those wonderful years, the private views the discussions, a time when everything seemed so possible. so many artists doing their thing. An exciting time indeed.

Optimistic_Reader said...

Is'nt it typical that it started to get hard once you were really committed to it?! It was the same for me with script reading.

Pillock said...

From where I'm sitting, you have 'started.'

Can't wait for next installment.

potdoll said...

Loving reading your story so far! When's the next chapter?

Far away said...

I'll have to spin it out now - to keep my readership up (ho ho)