creative research / dissertation

John Smith and the use of sound in film

I met again with Brian today. This is part of the initial organising for a taped interviewed for the documentary. He is a printmaker and letterpress printing tutor.

At the meeting he showed me the work of John Smith who he went to Art School within the 1970s. The work made me think about the different ways documentaries can be created and made me reflect on the traditional approach I’m taking. I very much enjoyed the films and I need to embrace some of the ideas to make sure my films stand out from the normal way letterpress is recorded.

#VOICEOVER: John Smith, Associations, 1975 from KALEIDOSCOPE Videoclub on Vimeo.

Sound on Film was a, sadly, short-lived 1997 BBC2 series which featured collaborations between a composer and director that sought to explore a more creative relationship between music and image.

Blight was a brilliant 1994-1996 collaboration between the composer Jocelyn Pook and director John Smith. The film addresses the construction of the M11 Link Road in East London, which resulted in the destruction of the homes of people who were part of an established community. The film’s soundtrack combines the speech of local residents affected by the motorway work, natural sound and Pook’s score for the Electra Strings.

The picture quality of the video recording is variable unfortunately but the film is too good not to be seen and heard!

Blight was an Airtight Films production for the BBC and Arts Council of England.

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