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I’ve always been fascinated how human emotion can be portrayed without using people or dialogue.
“These Four Walls” is about daring to explore a world that is bigger than you know. There are a lot of reasons to not do something or not feel something. Those boundaries and walls are put up by ourselves. Once we’re able to step outside of them, we can truly realize the endless possibilities the world has to offer.
TFW was made with the same sensibility as The One Days: HK shorts. I was traveling through the Tuscany area of Italy with my brother. Armed with one camera, we explored and captured the city in it’s most honest and natural form. The difficult part about making this short was figuring out how to present the story. Before leaving for the trip, I knew I would be seeing some breathtaking scenery. Shooting the scenery wouldn’t be too challenging. But how would I piece all the shots together to make sense and keep people engaged? That’s where the pinwheel came in.
I like the pinwheel because it’s something that everyone is familiar with. To me, a pinwheel always represented a kind of innocence and childlike playfulness. This personality was crucial to the short. Also, the movement of the pinwheel itself is interesting to look at. It doesn’t rely on anything except it’s surroundings to spin. And also, in terms of practicality, it’s a just simple toy that’s easy to make and transport.
I was considering writing some text that would appear throughout the short. Text that would tell viewers what the pinwheel was thinking and feeling. However, after I finished a first cut, I felt it was much stronger without the text. It felt too forceful and unnecessary to describe through words when the images and music are already full of emotion. Also, by leaving it open, the short might speak to people in more than one way.
Also, if you’ve read up to here, then thanks. Thanks for giving something like this a chance. It does take some patience to watch and it might not be everyone’s “cup of tea” but I hope you can appreciate when we mix things up a bit :]
Here’s a few fun facts about the short/trip:
- Most of the scenery is from Florence except for a few shots from Tabiano
- We took a span of 2 days to capture all the footage in the short
- There’s actually quite a bit of footage I had to leave out because the whole thing was getting long
- The opening scene of the pinwheel opening, took five hours to make (construction and filming)
- I had to spend 3 euros and ride the carousel twice by myself to get the last shot
- This was my second time being in Italy. The first time was in 2004
- The short was made with a Canon 5DII (for you geeks out there)