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2010 March

30 Mar


Fri 2nd and Sat 3rd : A Small Cinema in Widnes

March 30, 2010 | By |

This Friday and Saturday, every hour from 11 till 5, Re-Dock presents:

A Small Cinema in WIDNES!

For the first time since 1983, Widnes will have it’s own movie theatre.
A family-friendly short film event in the guise of a traditional cinema experience.
A temporary picture-house installation in a small shop in Widnes town centre.

Each show lasts just over half an hour.

Kid’s Matinée – 11 and 12 o’clock

Classic cartoons and new shorts for kids. All adults must be accompanied by a child!

Eye Widnes – 2 and 3 o’clock

Archive films, new animations, familiar faces – Widnes as you’ve never seen it before.
Featuring new work by Owain Bentley and Tim Brunsden

Scrambled Eggs – 4 and 5 o’clock

An eclectic selection of bizarre short films for an Easter Saturday at the movies.


advertisements for local shops!
local memories of cinema!
classic trailers for films you love!
Local heroes – films by local film-makers!
Ushers to show you to your seat!
popcorn and ice-cream!

64 Albert Road, Widnes

(just next to Barclays bank, opposite the Imperial pub)

(google map)


A Re-Dock project. Thanks to Halton Borough Council for its financial support.

22 Mar


No Comments

Hudds via Barnsley via Arsenal

March 22, 2010 | By | No Comments

hudds via barnsley

As I entered my teens, my mum would often say to me “you don’t always need to go to Huddersfield via Barnsley”. She was doing this as a way of warning me about over-thinking things – often to do with girls, but also in relation to work. Whilst I haven’t literally been via Barnsley since taking my girlfriend to see Kubrick’s ‘Eyes Wide Shut’ at the cinema there in 1999, I have repeatedly managed to over-complicate things, whether that be in search of romance, or on the quest for the ultimate (and self conscious) creative endeavour (indulgence).

Even as I’m writing this I’m jumping between paragraphs, adding a bit here, moving something else there. I’ve already written the end, and made notes for the next bit. Whilst that’s not necessarily the same as overcomplicating things, it says something of how the mind likes to jump around when being creative.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that I like to go the long way round because it helps you make the kinds of connections, associations and leaps of imagination that you couldn’t have gotten any other way. There, I’ve said it. We can all go home now. But in fact it’s taken me writing every other paragraph preceding and following this one, before I could boil it down to that.


In his book ‘The Element’, Ken Robinson discusses how humans, unlike animals, seem unable to just ‘get on with it’. We have to have ideas about things, and wonder what the meaning of it all is. Everything becomes re-made, re-imagined, re-interpreted. “C’est ne pa une pipe” – Magritte’s work highlights how our fluid our perception and projection of the world is, and ultimately how we love to question it all. The mind can get lost in these ideas and all too easily bend back upon itself. My mother on the other hand is a Yorkshire woman of mining heritage, and though an extremely sensitive, open minded and creative woman herself, knows when to call a spade a spade. “C’est une cosse”.

Maybe it’s my footballing heritage that is to blame. Despite being born and raised in Huddersfield, I and my brothers were raised as Gooners (my dad’s family came from North London). Arsenal Football Club have been transformed under the tenure of Arsene Wenger from “boring, boring Arsenal” to the Barcelona of North London. Their creative style of play – one touch passing around the team – is a joy to watch, except when you’re an Arsenal fan and you would rather see a result than a sexy build up leading to nothing in the final quarter. My friend used to wear a t-shirt with a Nietzsche quote that said “My idea of paradise is a straight line to goal”.  Arsene Wenger clearly has his own philosophy, and Arsenal seem to have a quest for the perfect goal at times rather than the easy goal, but I wouldn’t necessarily want to change them.

I like making connections and having weird ideas on the way to a solution – that is my mind doing its ‘total football’ thing. Finding those dead ends and secret passageways. It is both a skill and an expression of myself, however, applied to all areas of life all the time, then it does cause problems. The imagination is a wild dog and it will drag you where it wants. Sometimes you have to let the dog off the leash.

I know my mum is right about not taking the scenic route all the time, but at the same time it’s just the way I like to do it. Oddly enough, the last time I saw Arsenal play was when they came to Huddersfield for a pre-season friendly last year, and they didn’t travel via Barnsley. Nor did they play as such – they fielded and team of youngsters and won 2-0. They’ll learn.

18 Mar


Framing Motion

March 18, 2010 | By |

I’ve been waiting patiently for the press launch before I could put this one up. Here is the trailer I made for Moves 2010 International Festival of Movement On Screen. The theme of the festival is ‘Framing Motion’. The logo is by Smiling Wolf. And the festival takes place from 21st – 25th April in Liverpool and across the UK.

I was asked to create a piece of “artwork”, and whilst ultimately this is a just simple sting for a festival, the openness of that brief allowed me to explore my practice of using live layered feedback to create much more organic forms and movements. It may not look so slick, but its an achievement for me personally as I’m not a motion graphics designer. Instead of using After Effects or Motion (which scare me I’m ashamed to admit) I used the tools I do know: live camera feedback and Isadora.

The theme of Framing Motion was an interesting one for me to play with, as it is about the context in which movement occurs. With this video i tried to merge the movement and its context through the use of a feedback loop, in which the ‘frame’ of the image is a central visual element rather than a peripheral one.

This is not a straight forward feedback loop either – I was able to isolate changes in the image (‘difference’) and re-inject these back into the animation, but with changing tints. So what we see are essentially the movements between frames, rather than the direct content of the frames. The things we see are the things we can’t see. Apologies I’m babbling.

The sound, a track called ‘Palindromes’, was by my good friend and sonic structuralist Amos. As the name implies, the track is structured so it sounds the same forwards as backwards. This encouraged me to make both an intro and an outro video sting, but I’ve only put the intro one up here.

Anyway, cheers to Gala at Moves for giving me a stab at this. Thankyou to Tom for the excellent music. Will hopefully be creating some live VJ mixes during the festival alongside Tristan “TV Lux” Brady-Jacobs. Be sure to come and enjoy!

17 Mar


Toys for Boys

March 17, 2010 | By |

tech desk

I’m currently providing some reactive AV for a project working with kids across two schools in Chester. Every week I set my stuff up and the kids develop a performance with dancers and musicians whilst I provide reactive projections.

This week though I was given an assistant, a little girl called Kirsty. I gave her the job of activating switches an changing colours. I simply gave her the korg nano pad with red green blue and yellow stickers on the pads, and let her change in time with the performers.

It worked well because whilst I had some fancy patches going on in Isadora and lots of great tech all cabled together, the key changes could be controlled via this very simple interface. So, with a little introduction, Kirsty was able to guide us through the show with flying colours.