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film title sequence + motion graphics work_062117

memphis titles

it’s been a while since we updated this blog thing. it occurred to us that we really need to make a record of our gradual move into the world of film title sequences. unfortunately the way this website is constructed means that it’s hard to highlight this kind of work, and so we hope this article gives you an inkling of what we’ve done and hope yet to do in this field.

over the last few years we’ve been asked to do an increasing amount of motion graphics work for films, and whilst the work is often relatively rudimentary in terms of graphic design, the projects have certainly been respectable. in this regard it’s worth noting what kind of films we’ve worked on and observing the more subtle compliment a thing as simple as a typeface choice or type placement can offer a film. which isn’t to say we wouldn’t rather do something more explosive graphically, but more often than not a film doesn’t need that. not at all.

anyway, after a while in this business you realize that you need to just let the work speak for itself, rather than doing a whole lot of talking about your process or whatever. so here are a series of title cards and stills from various film productions, where you can see our motion graphic design work at play.

 

light up the night
co-directed by matt sundin and caspar newbolt. featuring drawings by john delucca and animation by josiah newbolt.

light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles
light up the night titles

 

entertainment
directed by rick alverson.

entertainment titles
entertainment titles
entertainment titles
entertainment titles
entertainment titles
entertainment titles
entertainment titles

 

dark night
directed by tim sutton. featuring in-film poster design and ‘google maps sequence’ compositing.

dark night titles
dark night titles
dark night titles
dark night titles
dark night titles
dark night titles
dark night titles
dark night titles

 

take what you can carry
directed by matthew porterfield.

take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles
take what you can carry titles

 

live cargo
directed by logan sandler.

live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles
live cargo titles

 

memphis
directed by tim sutton.

memphis titles
memphis titles
memphis titles
memphis titles
memphis titles
memphis titles
memphis titles
memphis titles

 

the convention
directed by jessica dimmock.

the convention titles
the convention titles
the convention titles
the convention titles
the convention titles

 

pavilion
directed by tim sutton.

pavilion titles
pavilion titles
pavilion titles
pavilion titles

 

muito romântico
directed by distruktur.

 

stay tuned for more work from us for jonas carpignano’s a ciambra, matthew porterfield’s sollers point and ari gold’s the song of sway lake.

cheers.

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memphis amongst best film posters of 2014_121614

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MUBI and slate have put together a list of their best film posters of 2014. we’re honoured to say that our poster for memphis came in 7th place, and must again thank adrian curry who put the list together for the recognition. it goes without saying that such an accolade would have been impossible without the belief and support of?tim sutton and the rest of the film’s crew. it’s not often that a relationship?of this kind allows such a level of artistic?freedom, and furthermore that this is one particular collaboration that’s only just getting started.

cheers,

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fotos + essay, underscore magazine_121514

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after a brief hiatus,?singapore’s underscore magazine?has relaunched with its?’arrival’ issue. included amongst its pages are two essays?of note; one by 65daysofstatic guitarist joe shrewsbury ? a?piece?which in fact opens the magazine; the other i wrote to accompany some photographs i took of a post-hurricane sandy manhattan?2 years ago.

here’s an excerpt from the latter ?

as i?walked around captivated by the things i?saw, i?stopped occasionally to send messages to the internet using my phone. observations, sensations and imagery as i?best i?could translate into words, shivering slightly with excitement in this unkempt, eerily unfamiliar, home city of mine.

“brooklyn reaches out its sparkling arm of a bridge tonight, cars dripping down it. the inky towers of manhattan stare quietly back.”

“a?family quietly opens a hydrant with all their tupperware waiting thirstily in the trunk of a car.”

“the occasional cab down a street reveals people on benches, talking together in the dark. shivering cigarette tips like fireflies.”

“expensive apartment blocks dead monoliths bathed in moonlight. candlelit windows flicker here and there, like everyone?s watching TV in sepia.”

and so on.

you can read the rest of the essay here, and you can see the original set of photographs i took here.

of course?nothing compares to owning an original copy of underscore. the latest issues is hardbound with?canvas and sports a?handwritten cover.?if you have the means, do grab yourself a copy.

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cheers,

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thanks for calling_093014


the video above is for ‘thanks for calling,’ the new single by our friend and long-standing collaborator, alessandro cortini. a man of many side projects, we have been fortunate to be most closely involved with sonoio, arguably his most lyrical outlet to date. it’s no secret that the dialogue between us is a constant thing, but it was around the time?memphis?was being shot that our discussions regarding a video for the?song really started to bear fruit. the treatment matt sundin and i put together was a personal one that we felt tied strongly to the lyrical themes of the record and also?harked back to the european filmmakers that had featured so heavily in all of our upbringings, for one reason or another.

that summer we found ourselves on the ground in los angeles. our producer,?friend and hero?katharine o’brien had already introduced us to the?fantastic?director of photography,?monika lenczewska, and we were scouting locations, machetes in hand, in the creeks of the santa monica mountains. monika’s enthusiasm and humour as we hacked through the undergrowth planning each shot breathed new life into the project, to say the least.

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soon enough emails were flying back and forth with various crew members and our crazed?psycho-drama?was beginning to look like a reality.

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casting, always the rogue element in any film, certainly took us to the brink. we’d crawl out of building sets deep in the forest and find ourselves sitting in a coffee shop or in front of a computer picking gunk?from beneath our fingernails,?looking at actors and actresses. the trick of course with this?film was that we had to find someone willing to play not just the swanky?LA party goer, but also the sunbaked, blood-soaked, creek fiend.

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with an entire nation of poison oak cleared away,?half the garbage in the surrounding 2 mile radius dragged into one spot and a crew of 20-30 people making a home somewhere long a trail through the forest, we hit the first day and watched marshall allman awake from his fall???delirious, smashed and looking for little more than a sip of water.

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naturally things got out of control and as marshall was dragged away by some curious ‘locals,’ we got into our fair share of technical scraps too. as he pretended to piece together the reasons for why his world had been turned upside down, we?hauled machinery around rocks, through undergrowth and in and out of ponds.

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as the day went on we threw everything?we had at marshall to try to keep him down. including a?specter of his wife, played by a rather radical looking daveigh chase. pretty soon he was telling us?exactly how he planned?to kill everyone in sight.

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technically speaking one of the highlights of the shoot was hugh bell bringing a prototype of his incredible?MOVI rig to the set. when the ground is basically all big rocks, this thing kept the shots looking and feeling like we were floating like a feather across the landscape. naturally it also allowed us a few evil dead style movements through the forest, which?was?cool. having hugh on set meant he could take apart the rig in a split-second to make any necessary adjustments as we moved forward and tried new shots ? an advantage we never took for granted.

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all the while we just tried to keep track of things.

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the next day and night we were in a convoy of cars racing around corners on one-way roads throughout the forest canyons. first we did a few runs with monika?and hugh?sitting in the back seat of the mustang, then,?with an?enormous camera strapped to the back of another truck like the outboard motor on a boat, we set them off by themselves. we then?coaxed marshall and daveigh deeper and deeper into a screaming match via?a walkie-talkie?hidden in their car, as we swept back and forth across dark canyon roads ??our lights out, unaware what might come from the mist at us with each new bend.

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it was a two and a half?day shoot that ended by the side of the road early on a saturday morning.?all of us, exhausted but content,?stared?down into a fog filled canyon stretching out toward the ocean. as our 1965 mustang’s headlights cast our shadows into the early morning mist, we wondered equally if we’d got every shot we needed and how good bed would no doubt feel when you’d driven yourself into the ground in this way.

editing the film was a tough process, as is always the case. there are many ways to skin a cat as they say, and this one was often?screeching as we did it. we ended up with not just 3-4 different edits of the video, but also two entirely different mixes for the song itself. in the end alessandro made the call as to which combination should be the ‘official’ cut. however we?also agreed that one of the other cuts made a good accompanying piece in terms of the different interpretations of the narrative. edit-wise it doesn’t vary hugely, but the colour grade,?sound design and song mix set it apart in ways that are worth?experiencing ? the song mix in particular couples well with the?new sound design and puts a different emphasis on the percussive elements of the outro.

this ‘director’s cut’?we present for you now ?

cheers.

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memphis awarded movie poster of the day_082914

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our poster for tim sutton’s memphis was kindly selected as movie poster of the day by adrian curry on his blog of the same name. adrian writes for film comment, MUBI?and is the design director for zeitgeist films. we’re thrilled to have made the cut ? thank you, adrian.

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film posters (part 3)_060414

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here’s another selection of film poster work from us. once again, some of these pieces were used whilst?others ended up hitting the cutting room floor.?either way they all offer an insight into our working process with our collaborators,?and consequently the?overall climate of film poster design today.

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once again a huge thank you to all the filmmakers who’ve given us the chance to work on their films. the process is always as thrilling as it is educational.

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giles vs. huffington post_052814

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giles was interviewed for huffington post a couple of weeks ago. the piece, which sits?in their small business section,?is important to us as it expresses concisely how far we’ve come as a company and where we stand ideologically to this day. it’s not often?you get?an exact thing you can point at whenever people ask you where you’re at, but now we have one. a huge thanks?to brian kil for granting?us this opportunity to be this outspoken, and on such a high platform.

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65daysofstatic japanese tour promo video_051214


65daysofstatic, no strangers to touring japan, asked us to put together a small promo clip for their forthcoming japanese tour. using footage we shot the last time they toured out there, this piece gives you a little taste of what it’s like to be right there with them on the road to such places.

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call girl_031114

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in the last days of 2013 whilst on a longish trip back to england, i sat down with my brother to watch a film called call girl. we didn’t know anything about it – in fact i’d picked it up because i liked the typography used for the film’s logo. it was close to midnight, we filled our whiskey glasses and slung the disc into the playstation. i said one word during the entire viewing. in fact i said that one word twice. the word was ‘fuck.’

call girl came out in 2012. it’s basically unheard of here in the US, and even harder to get a physical copy of. heck it was tough enough to find a pressing of the soundtrack that anyone would ship to england, let alone new york. whether this is to do with the controversy that surrounds the film, or simply because for some reason it failed to pickup a good distribution deal, is unclear.

call girl documents a political catastrophe in the 1970s that is still such a sore matter for those involved in sweden, that the film had to be heavily edited after it’s festival screenings in order for it to make the public domain. without going into the story, i’ll add that it’s one of the most beautifully written, shot, edited, scored, acted and packaged films i’ve seen in a long time. after watching it i immediately picked up a copy for a friend in england, and have since screened my copy for as many friends as i can in new york.

soon after returning from england i began to steal an hour here or there amongst my regular projects, to piece together notes, take screen snapshots and cut together various layouts. a day or so ago a much larger film related project landed – one that would truly require every second i had left in each day – and i had to save the files, export them and put this particular aside to rest.

there’s no real need to go into why the posters turned out the way they did, but they certainly follow my long-running ethos that the artwork supporting a film or record should in every capacity echo the tone, message and overall aesthetic value of that work. i hope you enjoy each of the 10 editions i’ve put together in different ways, and ultimately take the time to see the film (and buy the soundtrack) as soon as you can.

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my gratitude to daniel carlsten who’s typographic work on the film drew me to it. my congratulations to ?for such masterful directing, to hoyte van hoytema (let the right one in) for a level of cinematography the likes of which i wish every film could be blessed with, and lastly to mattias b?rjed for an incendiary soundtrack. one i am?still trying to get on vinyl.

for more information about the film click here.

cheers,

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memphis_011414

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tim sutton’s new feature film MEMPHIS is having it’s US premiere at the sundance film festival this week. the film stars the incendiary singer willis earl beal and chases, in the form of a filmic essay, the ever-fleeting soul of the creative process. as some of you know we have had the great honour of working on this film and you can read more about that in an interview we did with black book magazine here.

since putting together the posters for the film, we’ve created a small teaser site to celebrate the sundance acceptance. additionally the film has since been written up in dazed & confused magazine. to say that it’s a thrill to see the film (not to mention one of our photographs) in that legendary periodical would be an understatement.

here’s wishing the whole memphis film team all the success at sundance and beyond. it’s not often enough that films as experimental and searching as this get this sort of recognition.

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thanks to indiewire you can view a brand new trailer for the film below. do please immerse yourself for a moment. to paraphrase one of my favourite songs – nothing quite like the feel of something new.


lastly, if you have the means – see willis earl beal perform live. he’s touring europe in february and i can honestly say that there are very few out there of his caliber. lyrically, musically and performance-wise, he will most assuredly smash you to pieces.

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