A film directed by Gilles Blaize
Gilles Blaize’s “Aldous in London” is a short documentary with something of the dramatic structure of a musical – breaking into, not song but, interludes of painted animations. Gilles had the notion of extending what I had done in “New York New Work” and wanted to see how the over-painting would work if it was incorporated into live-action footage. The idea was to replace the postcard with a film-still so that the animation would move seamlessly between film photography of real life and the painting being dubbed onto the scene.
We recorded over two days. The first day Gilles interviewed me in the studio, on the second day he filmed me going out drawing; together we took a stroll from the old place in Charing Cross Road down to the Thames and over the river to Waterloo. (I didn’t know it then that is where I’d be moving my studio to.)
The plan was to make a five minute try-out but once Gilles had edited what he wanted from the interview he had twenty minutes of my pub pundit cod philosophy to cut and fit his film around. A job which he spent the next few months doing. Time which included capturing the stop-motion footage for all the animations (an unexpected technical problem he discovered came with the vibrations from the tunnelling for Eurostar going on at the time which meant Gilles having to reallign and adjust almost every frame!) Each of the animations had a piece of music appropriate to them composed by Dryden Hawkins; to find an individual musical identity for each of the animations can be a bit tricky, particularly when some of the painting takes ten seconds to materialise. He did a great job with the sound, as I think you’ll agree. We’re a team; Dryden, Gilles and myself. Hope you enjoy our efforts.