Inspiration

As we move into the edit process, it is time for me to take a bit of a back seat in the proceedings and let Sloane and Adam (our editor) work their magic.  For me, stepping back a little will help me watch our first assembly with ‘fresher’ eyes.  After writing the script, the novel and being present for the shoot, it is a little difficult for me to be subjective at the moment.  A little time always helps to regain clarity in these matters and I know my patience will help.  Of course it’s a bit like being a kid on Christmas morning – you know all those great presents are waiting for you, but can’t go and open them until everyone else is awake!

We found this skeleton in a cupboard with a plaque reading '1952 Hide and Seek Champion'. Just kidding - it is one of the many amazing items at Stuart Learmonth's place.

Meanwhile I am attempting to shift gears – from the manic organisation of the  shoot to a slower, more sedate pace.  I am playing with a few ideas for the score, but I never like to get too detailed until I am actually writing to picture.  I find that watching the inner rhythms of the piece – the speed  a character walks or waves their hand – to be the required skeleton for me to drape the musical structure over.   This early composition process for me is more of a ‘pencil sketch’ or ‘mood board’ – exploring possible feels at the piano.  I am looking forward to getting stuck in to scoring properly – but that won’t be until the edit is finishing up in a couple of months.

I have also been thinking about the next film rather a lot, however I am not going to tell you anything about it.  I like to write a script in secret and then show it to Sloane (cold – I don’t tell her about it either) to get her feedback.  If she likes it then I am happy and I know it is worth continuing with it.

These elongated phones feel very Terry Gilliam to me. I imagine banks of operators with curt haircuts, stabbing at the buttons with their long, bony fingers.

I do want to tell you about our trip to the prop houses yesterday, when we dropped a few odds and ends back at Trading Post and with Stuart Learnmouth. Both of these companies have been incredibly supportive of our film and we owe them a huge debt of thanks.  Not only do they have an amazing array of props to hire, but they are also lovely people – highly recommended.  We had a little time at Stuart’s and he invited us to go and explore his Alladin’s cave of vintage beauty.  I snapped a few images in my iPhone and they accompany this post.

I love the design of these old packages, it immediately transports you back to another era. They are like little edible time capsules.

What I find fascinating about old objects (and buildings, too – I love to touch old buildings) is that each seemingly innocuous one has a story.  Someone designed the item, someone else made it.  Later another, unknown person, transported it to a shop, where it was sold to a nameless customer by a long-dead shop keeper.  I can’t help but think of all of those people – what were their stories?  Did they listen to jazz, smell lavender, fall in and out of love?  Were they good people?  Did they ever go hungry, or holiday in Rome?  Did they live life, or did it just drift by them?

I highly recommend a trip for any writer/composer/designer/artist/poet, etc. to a prop house.  A few moments with the right object sets off a million sparks of inspiration – like tiny fireworks of thought on a chilly evening.

'Operator, can you connect me to Chelsea 415 please'...'connecting'...'Hullo, Hullo. Marjory, it's me, Charles. It's a boy. I'm a father!'

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