It took me a long time to complete the activity proposed for the bursary. Truth be told it still remains uncompleted. With the approval of a-n, I sidetracked the funds and earmarked them for other, related items, for which a need had emerged in light of the conclusions I came to regarding the viability of a local(ish) facility for artists wanting to use cine film: it seemed that if I wanted to up the awareness of and interest in the potentials of this medium, I would have to start off on my own, by myself, in my house, self sufficient. It is not financially viable, or even sensible, to travel those distances for facilities, but maybe growing up in London and cutting my teeth at the London Film Makers Co-op had spoilt me.
Now, on finally completing the blogging activity, I can report that the workshop I have waited over a year for is (hopefully) to happen next March. Next March! Waited over a year for?
Yes. This workshop is rare. Possibly the most valuable thing I have learned from my bursary activity is that I may be the only remaining person in Britain with a desire to shoot and hand process the enigmatic Double 8 film format. All the more important then that I become proficient in processing and handling the film myself if I seriously want it to have a roll in my practice. I shot one of my first films on Double 8, using an old Fujica which was the most reliable member of my Double 8 camera collection. I have a passion for this format, because it gives the possibility of ‘messing about’ with image production right from the off in the camera. The celluloid is 16mm wide, the camera gate is 8mm wide, you shoot the roll, open the camera in safe light, flip the roll over, put it back on the start spool and shoot all over again, down the other half of the film. The lab splices the 16mm strip into two 8mm strips and there’s your footage. To my mind there is a whole lot of ‘messing’ I can do with that if the lab are not involved. When I found the workshop listed at Gauge Film I knew I had to be there. But this particular workshop gets cancelled when there are insufficient sign-ups. This workshop is rescheduled for months later, but is cancelled because of problems with the organisation’s building. I tell the organiser how keen, even desperate, I am to do this workshop and he explains it may not run again because hardly anyone is ever interested. I’m on an email alerts list. My bursary period runs out. I spend the money.
Finally, I come to publish my written blog posts, which have been languishing in a folder on my desktop, and uncanny as can be, I go to the Gauge Film website to check the url to make a hyperlink in the text, and there it is, my long awaited workshop, scheduled for March 2019.
Am I soon to find out I truly am the only remaining person in Britain with a desire to shoot and hand process the enigmatic Double 8 film format?