|Canecutter, Keep and T. Benjamin|
Actor Tel Benjamin has shot and edited an insightful clip visualizing the creative process of an engrossed and inspired Keep, the pseudonym of a Sydney-based curator and visual artist currently studying at COFA/UNSW, as he illustrates a GMCS surfboard to an engaging track by Canecutter.
Growing up with a father who had crafted his own surfboards, as well as seizing the opportunity to explore surfboard hydrodynamics for his Engineering Degree thesis at USYD, Geordie McSullea’s desire to design his own board using his father’s expertise and his researched findings seems an inevitable outcome. Hand-shaped and finished as to maximize the planning force, a feature suited to Australian surfing conditions, Geordie’s board encapsulates every element of his surfing experience, from inherited knowledge and education to location. During the board’s creation Geordie asked Keep, who he has known and grown up with from a very young age, to illustrate the board in admiration of his design aesthetic and as a way to creatively collaborate with a close friend.
Capturing Keep in the moment of creation, Tel Benjamin's clip has been cut to include sweeping shots, experimentation with focus and juxtaposed close-ups as to visually demonstrate Keep's process in action. After discussing Tel's first "thrilling" creative experience behind a camera filming a "dodgy 80's cop parody", Keep suggested that Tel shoot a promo of the board being illustrated, an opportunity Tel took and ran with. Keep's creative method is presented chronologically, revealing not only what can be seen in the final product, but also the sketching, erasure, overlaying and finishing required to get there. As the day turns to night there is the shot of a lamp being turned on; a transition from natural to artificial light which exposes the amount of time and energy put into the work. These visuals are enhanced with a track by Canecutter. Working on a project with Keep and Cancutter did not come as a surprise to Tel who explains that, "...Keep, Canecutter and I have been very close friends for a number of years now. We went to High School together and have always been a great support base for each other's creative outlets... We have all begun to discover our own reasons to create and really discovered what drives us and our work it was sort of inevitable that we would end up working together."
Canecutter’s track ‘Sleeping Habits’ begins with booming sounds amid a reverberation of crepitating electricity, which suddenly builds with echoes, flowing wails and fast high beats that disrupt the calmness of the track, but are still rhythmic and euphonious. This electronic music is not quite the beach-boy inspired song or man-with-guitar expected of a surfing video, allowing the clip to remain focused on the artist and his process as the subject. Canecutter describes the space in which he creates his music as “pretty bare… just a white room, its kinda nice like that, like a blank canvas to get making stuff,” though he laughingly discusses the desire to “…get some plant life to inject a bit of life into it.” Though this comment was made tongue-in-cheek, it loosely describes what Canecutter’s track has done for this clip in the inverse. Just as Canecutter's creative space is constantly filled with various sounds and beats, but is in need of something tangibly interesting, ‘Sleeping Habits’ injects audible life and vibrancy into a clip of visible creative motion, something the clip needed to give it the immersive quality it is able to boast.
The pairing of Tel's camera work featuring Geordie and Keep's collaboration, with Canecutter's music, is an inspired choice. It will be interesting to see how these boys work with each other and independently in the future. For an interview with Tel, Geordie, Keep and Canecutter go HERE.