Dan Browne

By Edwin Rostron

Alberta (2014) by Dan Browne

The work of Toronto-based artist Dan Browne is often concerned with perception and our environment, exploring the contradictory and complex relationship we have with both. It observes the surfaces and systems of natural and technological forms, and reveals the presence of memory, loss and anxiety within the fabric of physical spaces and locations. Like many of the filmmakers featured on this blog, I first came across Dan’s work online. The scope of his vision and the powerful sensory effect of his films were clearly apparent in that viewing context, and when I showed his 2014 work Alberta in the first Edge of Frame screening in June, the film was transformed into a truly immersive physical experience.

Dan’s work often forefronts the technology of image-making to explore how our perception constructs the environment we experience, and also how our environment molds perception. Works such as Alberta and memento mori (2012) present a heightened vision of perceived experience, a dizzying, endlessly rolling palimpsest. In other works like his ongoing Grids project, he explores the moving image as part of the environment itself, describing it as “video wallpaper for a future environment in which screens will be so proliferate that they become architecture”.

Dan’s work has screened and won awards at many festivals and venues worldwide, including Rotterdam International Film Festival, Centre Georges Pompidou, London Film Festival and TIFF Cinematheque. He has collaborated on projects with Carl Brown, Peter Mettler, Michael Snow, and members of the Loop Collective, and is currently a PhD candidate in the York/Ryerson Communication and Culture program. I am thrilled to present Dan’s fascinating and thought-provoking answers to my questions below.

Gulf (2016) by Dan Browne

Can you give some biographical background about yourself?

I was born in Montreal in 1982, and grew up in Toronto, where I have lived for most of my life. I have a supportive partner and a son who is now two years old. I work in a variety of capacities as a filmmaker, and also with an assortment of other media contexts, including photography, installation, performance, sound, painting, drawing, sculpture, and collage. These days I am completing a PhD in the York/Ryerson Graduate Program in Communication and Culture, where my research focuses on relationships between art, technology, nature, language and aesthetics.

Excerpt from Poem (2015) by Dan Browne

How long have you been making films? How did you first get into making art and more specifically into filmmaking?

I have always been drawn towards making art, from as early an age as I can recall. I recently rediscovered some colour experiments I made with markers on clear slide film when I was very young, and these made me realize that my trajectory as an artist began at a high point followed by a decade or so spent learning the ‘rules,’ and another decade or so spent unlearning them (a process in which I am still engaged).

My mother was a script supervisor and occasionally brought me onto sets to be an extra, which contributed to an early interest in filmmaking. My father is passionate about photography, and sometimes I would help him develop prints or collaborate on small projects. I recall encountering his copy of Michael Snow’s Cover To Cover (1975) at a formative age and having a revelation at how utterly new the camera and moving image arts are in comparison to the previous forms of art history. The fact that these media are barely a century old implies vast territories remain uncharted, which is an exciting proposition that most people tend to forget because technological environments are so quickly taken for granted.

Le Paradis n’est pas artificiel (2016) by Dan Browne

I made my first 16mm films at Ryerson’s School of Image Arts, where my initial week of classes coincided with 9/11. The following four years were a series of lessons in how the dominant media structures create and sustain hegemony, and by the time I finished with school I was thoroughly disinterested in working within the culture industry. This disillusionment was given a positive form through the inspiration of several teachers who approached media as forms of authentic and intimate personal expression, especially R. Bruce Elder, whose experimental film processes course I took the year after Stan Brakhage passed away. It was clear to me how desolated Bruce was by the death of his friend, and his lectures alternated between personal anecdotes, close readings of manifestos and poetry, lucid explanations of technical processes, and showing films (always twice) that were genuine revelations, made by filmmakers I had never previously heard of. I began to gain awareness that the avant-garde was the source of the innovations that previously inspired me in commercial cinema, and provided an arena for making that resonated with the artistic and philosophical traditions I was passionate about. Narrative cinema became a total blind alley for me, and the ability to make films on my own, in an intimacy equivalent to what most artists in other disciplines maintain, became my calling. I knew that it would be nearly impossible to pursue as a career that would offer some sort of stable income, but I followed it anyway – it was simply too rich of a tradition to ignore.

Passage (2016) by Dan Browne

Your practice encompasses a wide variety of elements, from 16mm to digital video, to digital animation and performance, photography, prints and installations. How much do you feel these different works relate to each other? Do you feel like these are all different aspects of a whole or more like separate, discrete avenues that allow you to investigate different ideas through the different mediums? How much is your work driven by the processes and materials of the different forms?

I hope that my body of work has some cohesion, but it is not something that I actively enforce – if nothing else, the common denominator is always myself. The work that I am most pleased with, and which I consider to be most successful, is usually a mystery to me until after it is complete, and sometimes it remains this way permanently. I am interested in exploring the grammar of media, and branching out in new directions is very much an integral part of that process. I tend to develop my approach based on the properties of a medium that I am most interested in exploring, and this usually has to do with some aspect of my experiences in perception or what I perceive as a problem to be solved.

My work evolves as a response to the process, rather than a pre-existing idea, and I resonate with Jonas Mekas’ credo, “I am not making films, I am just filming”, where he describes the act of creation as a form of unbounded ecstasy. I would love to perpetually exist in that state, but at some point it becomes necessary to shift to an analytic mindset in order for the work to be completed and achieve a public and independent existence. I often feel it necessary to let content sit for a period of time before I can return to it with enough perspective to ask what shape it would like to become. As a result of this working method, and due to the fact that I am constantly making new things, I tend to have a perpetual backlog and my output tends to oscillate between new and old projects. Sometimes I find that shifting between media is useful as a way of cleansing my palette – using a computer for extended periods can be exhausting on the body, and makes returning to analog formats very satisfying, for example.

Working with media today is a challenge because there are new convergences in formats taking place all the time, while also increased fragmentation within each area – the terrain is constantly shifting, and this affects not only the tools but the modes of circulation as well. I am more interested in considering media as emergent phenomena than as established forms, and I think that exploring grey areas between different territories and languages is one of the vital functions of the arts. In fact, I would say that I am more interested in focused explorations of these grey areas than I am in making or looking at art – I find works that avoid these issues to be generally quite boring and conservative.

memento mori (2012) by Dan Browne

How did your film memento mori (2012) come about? Was it clear to you as an initial idea or did it build up over time? Can you talk a bit about the technical / physical processes involved in generating and building up the layers of imagery and sound? How conscious or unconscious was your working process?

memento mori is a project that encompasses the span of my entire photographic practice at the time of its making – there are over 128,000 discrete images included in its making, and these are structured in cyclical forms that involve substantial repetitions and layering. The project was initially conceived as a prelude for a larger unfinished work, which was a diary film composed of all the video recorded with my first digital camera. Due to various reasons, it became impossible to finish this piece, but at some point it occurred to me that I ought to do something with the still images from the camera as well. I was digitizing my archive of analog photographs at the same time, and when I realized that all of this material was available on a single hard drive, the concept for the film as a sort of autobiographical Gesamtkunstwerk was born. I was inspired by Hollis Frampton’s notion of incorporating deliberate “misfortunes” or “breaches of decorum” into a systematic work, and so there are some extra elements added in: the first movement has a patina of early camcorder footage, which burns colour fragments into certain frames, and the film concludes with the earliest video record I have of myself, ice skating with my father.

memento-mori-roadsunsetxlarge-1471019790For Paul Sharits, still image from memento mori (2012)

I developed my method of working with still images gradually over the span of eight years, and was initially inspired by a system that I was using to convert digital material to film by translating video sequences to still images that were re-photographed, frame by frame, with an animation stand. I realized that I could also do the opposite by processing still photographs as 24fps video –the basic formula for any time-lapse – and so I started shooting with my digital camera nonstop, which was easy because the images could flow from the memory card to the hard drive without any need to constantly purchase new tapes or reels. This revolutionary aspect of digital media seems to be almost entirely taken for granted already, but it had a major impact on my practice because I could shoot to my heart’s content without having to worry about the expense and storage of materials to the extent that I would have if I had been producing the same volume of content using analog formats. As I began processing images in this way, it shifted my approach with the camera towards taking thousands of photos at a time, basically filling the memory cards whenever I could. I began to experiment with layering, looping and blending the same image sequence at a variety of speeds to produce a phasing effect similar to some of Steve Reich’s early compositions. The result was that a finite set of photos could generate a potentially infinite dynamic video sequence due to the variations and chance combinations of the layers. The representations of space and time held similarities to both the visual structures of Cubism as well as the tesseract-like quality of Reich’s music, where one can acutely sense dynamic shifts in timescales.

Recomposition (2008) by Dan Browne

These experiments began as disconnected sequences, and I eventually assembled a portion of them into a short silent work, entitled Recomposition (2008), but it was challenging to share the results because all of the intricate details vanished when the final product was exported onto a DVD or posted online – it looked like a soupy mess of pixels due to the compression. This was before working with HD video was widely accessible, and it took another three years of letting this material sit before I revisited these sequences, prompted by the idea of employing this process as a means for addressing my entire photo archive. At that point I found that I could re-author everything at a higher resolution, which also entailed a shift in aspect ratio. It only became possible in the last five years or so to adequately present the level of complexity and detail of this approach in video, and it is still sometimes a struggle because codecs are normally designed to prioritize similarities between frames rather than discontinuity.

The important thing to note about this compositional process is that it provided a means for embracing both intentional and chance-based structures, which is a consistent theme in my work. I reinforced this in the editing stages by alternating between these two approaches while arranging picture and sound, beginning with a structural approach to arranging material and then taking cues from synchronicities that occurred by chance, carving out elements to mediate harmony and dissonance, and allowing the overall form of the work to emerge as a dialogue between myself and the material. This working method allows for both conscious and unconscious processes, and even the possibility of a machine unconscious, or whatever might be a more appropriate analogy.

One of the principal themes I sought to explore in memento mori is how vision is shaped by technology. There is a commonly held notion that in the moment before death a person sees their life flash before their eyes like an accelerated motion picture. While this is a fairly adequate literal description of what happens in memento mori, what is much more interesting to me is that this particular idea just so happened to come into fashion at the same time as the cinema and the camera arts were widely established. This correlation reveals one of the ways that technology functions as a metaphor for interpreting experience – by mediating our understanding of space and time, it deeply influences our ideas about mortality, as well as our aspirations towards immortality.

memento-mori-handtexturexlarge-1471019790Reaching, still image from memento mori (2012)

During the making of memento mori I was dealing with the deaths and illnesses of several people who were very close to me, and the project is very much a crisis work generated in response to those events, which forced me to consider my own mortality in a way that I had never done previously. This consideration was framed within the context of my ongoing anxieties regarding the destruction of our planetary ecosystems, and the increasingly probable future that Earth will largely become a desert by the next century. This reality only gets worse with every passing year and at this point seems to be completely inevitable unless some sort of massive change occurs immediately, and yet hardly anyone talks about the issue with any seriousness – our so-called “advanced” civilization carries on with its business as usual in an unconscious and somnambulistic fashion, while we gradually foul our nest beyond repair. Most people seem to be able to keep this awareness out of their daily minds, but it is all that I can think about sometimes, and often leaves me asking the same questions about meaning that emerge when one is forced to consider one’s own mortality. This foreboding awareness of ecological catastrophe also places the images of trees, clouds, water, etc., that are consistent elements in the film in a new frame of meaning, as people might one day see these landscapes as a paradise to which they no longer have access.

memento-mori-autumn-leaves-2xlarge-1471019790Autumn Leaves, still image from memento mori (2012)

The intent of memento mori was to work through the pain of a profound sense of loss in order to develop a revised notion of death from how we normally experience it – to understand death as a inevitable process, and therefore one that must be accepted, honoured, and even celebrated on some fundamental level, as the force that creates the soil from which life grows. This idea is addressed most explicitly by excerpts from lectures by Alan Watts and Ram Dass used in the soundtrack, which consider death as an act of liberation that can reaffirm meaning rather than remove it. Such a realization risks being trite and false, a truism that we can understand intellectually but not emotionally, and that is why the film employs such a great deal of perceptual violence – it is meant to be a challenging experience that require active work on the part of the viewer to make it all the way through. Hopefully that work is pleasurable for most, but I was open to the option that some people might be shocked or disturbed by the experience to the point of being forced to stop watching it. Shock can remind viewers that they are experiencing a film with their entire body, that they are not merely a pair of floating eyeballs – it is a crucial step to emerge from somnambulism. The film is an ecstatic vision on the brink of annihilation and in that sense it is meant to overwhelm; it always generates an emotional response for me when I view it from start to finish, because I see so many of the places and people that have given meaning to my life.

memento-mori-greenlampflowerxlarge-1471019790Electric Blossom, still image from memento mori (2012)

The soundtrack also incorporates whales, birds, and field recordings from indigenous cultures around the world as an archive of aspects of our world that is slipping away, preserved as an echo. The archival impulse of the work reinforces its theme of mortality – as Derrida outlines in Archive Fever, the Freudian death drive is central to the archive, which attempts to isolate and preserve materials in stasis – but this is subverted through its over-extension, by cramming so many images and sounds on top of each other to that they are barely legible at certain points. The use of superimpositions results in the contents of images being destroyed while simultaneously creating something new, and this destruction is furthered by the velocity of their presentation, which causes forms to dissolve as quickly as they appear and makes it difficult to take everything in consciously. I wanted the work to be generative and limitless, and the visual and acoustic polyphony forces the viewer to make constant decisions regarding what to focus on, which means that each viewing can reveal new relations between the images – a garden of forking paths.

This desire for mutability is also why I chose to present the work in a variety of contexts and formats: there is a 60 minute extended version for looped gallery installation, extracted still frames have been displayed as a photographic series, and I have re-interpreted it several times in a live performance context, remixing the images in collaboration with two of the musicians whose work is featured in the soundtrack. I also shared memento mori publicly online before it was ever presented in a cinema, and so in this regard it could be considered as an Internet artwork before being a “film” or anything else.

Vanishing Point
, still image from memento mori (2012)

Your work with digital animation is very intriguing and works as a fascinating counterpoint to your other moving image work. How did you begin making this work and what techniques and processes do you employ? How would you describe your ideas behind it and its relationship to your other work?

My first films were hand-painted on 16mm leader and I have always been interested in moving images made without the use of a camera, but there has always been a certain tension between that vein of exploration and the works I have made using cameras. I have done a variety of experiments in digital animation over the years, but the first mature project is Grids (2013- ), an open-ended series of video paintings that are each recorded in a single take using live image-mixing software.

Grids series (2013- ) by Dan Browne

Grids came about during a period where I did not have time to focus on any new large-scale projects but was feeling restless in my inactivity, so I decided to establish a context in which I could improvise new works in real time. Each installment remixes material from a variety of sources, ranging from original content to found footage (and even other works within the same series), through an interface that remaps their pixel information into simple geometric formations, represented as either a point or line. These shapes are modulated through basic algorithms of movement, scaling, rotation and distortion to generate patterns that develop slowly over time, producing a variety of optical effects that play with the illusionistic depth of the Cartesian coordinate system. I perform all of this live with MIDI instruments and intentionally do not plan anything in advance.

The inspiration for the project came from my passion for visual music cinema, which is a tradition that I think is in need of some contemporary rehabilitation from its widespread banalization as computer screensaver. The Grids series flirts with the realm of the screensaver, but filtered through a sort of post-minimal-meets-free-jazz aesthetic. The project is a step towards a catalogue of dynamic and endlessly evolving video wallpaper for a future environment in which screens will be so proliferate that they become architecture; today they can be employed within public spaces that have televisions that show boring commercial programming and 24-hour news channels. The entire series is currently available on YouTube and accessible to the public; this might change at some point in the future if I do a gallery show with them, but since they are all sketches that require minimal effort, I like the idea of sharing them freely.

I distinguish these works as being distinct from my films in the sense that they are meant for an ambulatory viewer whose attention and environment can be variable instead of fixed. They are intended to be marginal and environmental and could be shown in a gallery, cinema, or any other context, and if people want to listen to music or have a conversation in their presence that is fine, whereas I wouldn’t suggest those conditions as ideal for viewing my silent films, which have fixed durations and more intricate rhythms.

Reflections I (2016) by Dan Browne

Can you talk a bit about The Lost Cycle (2016) – how and when these films came about and how/why they are emerging into the world now? How do you feel they fit into your overall oeuvre?

The films in The Lost Cycle were all shot many years ago, and have been rattling around in the back of my mind ever since. In some cases, I withheld them because I thought they contained mistakes or were incomplete, but in most cases I just never had an opportunity to share them. The catalyst for their completion was that I recently made new prints of all my 16mm films for distribution (via CFMDC and Light Cone), which is something that I had been meaning to do for years but always had difficulties finding the sufficient time, money, or studio space. To make matters worse, in the process of moving between various residences, all of my elements had gotten completely mixed up, creating a mess where I was no longer sure where anything was or if certain items were missing or damaged. In the process of going through my negatives, I found these otherwise lost moments in my filmography, moments that had meaning, which I had intended to do things with but never got around to doing, and decided to release them as a coming to terms with my karma for the medium.

Seven different short films emerged out of the material, which I have opted to release individually and as a series. As I mentioned previously, my films usually sit for a while before I am ready to complete them, but in dealing with this batch of works the process felt different, as the space between their inception and completion was quite substantial, and my practice has moved primarily into the digital realm since memento mori. In fact, all of the locations in The Lost Cycle are also depicted at various points in memento mori, as I was shooting with both film and digital cameras at the time.

Reflections II (2016) by Dan Browne

Almost all of the films are highly personal and relate to intimate family spaces. Reflections is a serial work shot on a lake that I have visited every summer with my family for nearly thirty years, and which is a very formative place for me. I shot Quanta (2008) there, as well as most of my earliest landscape studies, and since Quanta was made using black and white stock, Reflections came out of a desire to reintegrate colour into this subject and examine its varied potentials. Water is something that I am continually returning to, especially that particular body of water, and so I opted to make these two films the first parts of an open-ended series that I can extend at a later point if I want to. Seasons: Fall is also part of an unfinished quartet that I hope to continue, which concerns the dirt path from the main road to my cabin in that same landscape. The events in Passage and Field were trips that I took with my younger brother, and the train tracks and cornfields in those films feature predominantly in memento mori.

Quanta (2008) by Dan Browne

Gulf is the most recent in terms of its chronology, and out of all the films it is the one I knew I needed to finish immediately. Gulf was shot on a beach in Cuba on a trip that took place just a few weeks before the Deepwater Horizon oil spill began, which lasted for nearly three months and contaminated the Gulf of Mexico with 4.9 million barrels of oil. For a long time, I considered the footage worthless because it was considerably damaged: the loop in the camera malfunctioned, causing a flicker that obliterates the image in an unpredictable and intermittent rhythm, and the airport x-ray machines fogged a portion of the negative. It was only after I realized the connection between the footage and the Deepwater Horizon spill that I came to recognize these interventions enacted a form of violence that interpret the tragedy almost as an omen. I have never seen a similar flicker effect used intentionally in a film before, and when the print is projected it can be difficult to tell whether the issue is with the projection or the film itself. While the anxiety it creates was initially displeasing to me, in the context of the massive dead zone that was created in the Gulf of Mexico by the oil spill it makes perfect sense as a depiction of the lapse between representation and void.

During this same trip, I also shot Flightfilm, the final work in The Lost Cycle, the negative for which was also partially fogged by x-rays. In this case, the fogged imagery matches the cloud landscape in the film, and its wobbly rhythmic pulse carries over the flicker effect seen in Gulf. It’s interesting to me that the cycle concludes with these two instances of the medium literally breaking down or visibly decaying – I think it is an apposite metaphor for the status of film today, not only within my own practice, but also in the context of the broader media landscape. These accidents are beautiful, and they serve as an interesting argument for the medium-specific strengths of 16mm – when digital technologies break, they often result in content becoming completely inaccessible instead of transformed in a way that might produce a similar silver lining.

Flightfilm (2016) by Dan Browne

The Lost Cycle is ultimately an investigation to see whether it is worth it for me to continue working with this format, which is expensive and time-consuming, or if this will be my last stand before surrendering to the digital realm. I would love to continue using 16mm, but it is so costly once everything is factored in that it is difficult for me to feel free while shooting to take the sort of chances I want to take with it, as my work is almost entirely self-funded and I like to have the freedom shoot on a constant basis. Switching back and forth between formats is an option though, so we’ll see what happens.

You have worked collaboratively in some of your films and performances; can you talk a bit about the importance and effect of collaboration within your work? You are part of the Loop Collective, can you tell us a bit about this and its effect on you and your practice?

With the exception of soundtracks, I generally avoid collaboration when making my own films, but that is mainly the result of the circumstances in which I work, and I enjoy collaborating on other people’s projects and in other media, such as installation and performance. I have recently begun to branch into live video mixing performances where collaboration with musicians and other artists is an essential component. Most recently, I was paired with Montreal-based musician Karl Fousek for a live audio-visual performance based on the Grids series at Vector Festival in Toronto. The festival’s curators, Skot Deeming and Martin Zeilinger, proposed the collaboration and we performed without any advance practice session – it was a great experience and I hope we can do it again soon.

I’ve been lucky to work on some projects by artists I greatly respect in a range of capacities over the years, and in that sense collaboration has been a key aspect to my development as a filmmaker. These projects include videography for Michael Snow’s Reverberlin (2007), image and sound processing for R. Bruce Elder’s The Young Prince (2007), sound composition for Carl Brown’s Memory Fade (2008) and Blood Sugar (2016), and assistant camera and editing for Peter Mettler’s The End of Time (2012). The musique concrète compositional style that I employed in memento mori was largely informed by my experience in developing similar soundtracks for The Young Prince (in collaboration with Ajla Odobasic) and Memory Fade, where in both situations I was granted freedom to create a composition without any reference as to how it would synchronize with the image aside from the total duration – it was only after the picture and sound negatives were printed together that the sync was finally established. This leap of faith forced me to consider sound as entirely independent from picture, functioning as a simultaneous but distinct event.

Trailer for One Another, a live performance by Karl Fousek and Dan Browne (2016)

Delving into all the other lessons from these projects would take too long to get into here, but if I had to summarize the most important effect of working with these artists, it would be that I was consistently treated with a level of respect that forced me to recognize myself as being on equivalent rather than subordinate terms in the working relationship. Having your work taken seriously by well-established individuals whose work you respect is invaluable in learning to take your own work seriously as well, which can be a difficult prospect at times, especially when you are just starting out and the vast majority of people think your work is too weird or wrong or completely irrelevant, as is often the case when I try to explain what I do to people who are unable to conceive of filmmaking outside of its narrow definition as a screen translation of a script with actors and industry baking. That type of relationship can be difficult to come by – it is nearly impossible on a commercial film set, where economic considerations force a clear hierarchy of power with zero interest in the ideas of those who occupy a lesser rank – and I do my best to pay it forward whenever possible.

I have also been lucky to be involved with the Loop Collective on numerous projects, and I am extremely grateful to its members for providing a great deal of encouragement over the years – especially Izabella Pruska-Oldenhof, who has always been one of the greatest supporters of my work. Through Loop, I organized several years of experimental film screenings that were free to the public, which allowed me the opportunity to see a lot of great works that are hard to come by. Lately the collective has not been as active because most of the members are working full time, parenting, or both, but this year I am happy to have curated a touring programme of recent works by Loop members for the collective’s 20th anniversary, which we also have celebrated with the release of a book publication on our history. While experimental filmmakers can often be lone wolves within their own practices, Loop is a good example of how collaboration can occur through affinities between common sensibilities and approaches.

I believe that presenting the works of other artists is an under-acknowledged but important aspect of maintaining one’s own artistic practice, because it provides a context of understanding one’s place within a greater milieu and connects various communities that benefit both the filmmakers and audiences. The truth of the matter is that only a very few people make efforts to show this sort of work in comparison with the dominant entertainment industries, and truly independent filmmakers and artists need to support each other as best they can, because we are all so marginal that most of it, even many of the great masterpieces, are just a few steps away from the dustbin of history. Without such essential forms of labour it is difficult for anyone to make a lasting contribution.

On Sundays (2007) by Dan Browne

What are your current and future projects?

At the moment, I have three longer works that are partially complete but I haven’t been able to find the time to work on them, although they are aching for my attention. The first is a follow-up to memento mori, a travelogue that encompasses photos taken between the conception and birth of my son, and is as much about life as the previous work was about death. The second is a time-lapse portrait of a bay window in my previous apartment, which is also seen in Poem (2015). I photographed this window for an entire year using an intervelometer, and because the process was semi-automated, I now have more pictures of this one subject than the entire rest of my photography combined – there may be enough for a feature-length work, but because duration complicates things exponentially, it may be some time before I am able to complete it. The third film is a similarly grandiose remix project that is nearly feature length, entitled Heavenly Bodies, and is based on content derived from my live video performances. I have already shown it a few times in its current draft version, but plan on revising some sections further, although the last ten minutes are perfect and might be the fullest expression of the potentials of the moving image that I have made thus far.

reflections_ii_5_300dpiStill from Reflections II (2016) by Dan Browne

I also still have at least one or two other incomplete 16mm films, plus my video diary project (the current edit for which is 16 hours), and lots of camcorder tapes sitting around that I would like to do something with eventually. So I have enough material to keep me busy for a long period of time, even if I don’t shoot anything new – which I will, of course – and it’s just a matter of finding the opportunity to work on these things. However, right now my primary objective is to stay focused on my PhD dissertation, which I would like to complete within the next year, and so I will be taking a bit of a hiatus before diving into any of these projects in depth.

Filmmaking is only one aspect of my life and I don’t like to define it as my singular purpose – I would rather prioritize being healthy and happy, cooking good meals to share with friends, going outside for walks in nature, and spending time with my son. It’s important to work a little bit each day to sustain one’s practice, but finding a successful balance is even more important in order to live a good life, which at the end of the day is what this is all about.

Dan Browne’s website is here


© Edwin Rostron 2016