“There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”
- Leonard Cohen
I am very proud to be part of an incredibly smart, heartfelt and inspiring independent feature film going to camera later this month. Director Kate Johnston and I have been working hard at scouting some remarkable locations in Toronto’s Cabbagetown, Ward’s Island and other pockets throughout the city for what will be a beautiful film about romantic love, friendship, mothers and daughters. The plot’s central love triangle features Kate Trotter, Christine Horne and the film’s own brilliant producer and co-writer Shauna MacDonald.
I’m very excited to capture this project on the RED Scarlet and work with some of my favourite people in bringing the cinematography to life for this project. Many thanks must already go out to PS Production Services for coming on board to help us bring this story to the screen.
Over the past 3 years I’ve been snapping photos of things that have been left on the side of the road for a series called “Discard”. Sometimes a photo happens because the upholstery creates an interesting contrast against its bland surroundings. Other times it’s not about the furniture as much as it’s about the environment in which I find it. Sometimes it’s the strangeness of the arrangement itself, like this pyramid in Langley, B.C:
Recently I decided to cut the prints up and start arranging them as collages. Here’s an example of how that got started:
I’ve shot banished couches, shelves, electronics, beds, pianos and TVs in downtown Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, San Francisco and Los Angeles, but my favourite are the collages of the suburbs of Toronto. Maybe it’s because I grew up there, so the dismissed items seem to have more personal history attached to them, as if they’d once played an important role in their homes before being ditched so unceremoniously to the curb:
AND LOOK! I’ve taught myself how to make an animated gif so that we can observe the collage process IN MOTION:
Almost a year after wrapping THE CHESTER KIDS I went back up to Stayner, ON and Wasaga Beach with Travis Ainley to shoot promotional photos with leads Stu Hammill and Brandon Coffey. We shot a few rolls of black and white 35mm film. Results of the day:
The Toronto International Film Festival will be screening two films that I had the pleasure of shooting, “SOAP” and “DEADMAN”. Both will be presented in the Short Cuts Canada Programme 3.
You can find more info on both of these films on the old NEWS section of my website
SOAP was directed by Dusty Mancinelli and shot on S16mm. DEADMAN was directed by Chelsea McMullan and produced by Vision Entertainment and the National Film Board of Canada.
See the schedule and synopsis for SOAP and DEADMAN by clicking on these links.
Darryl Marks on location at Ezra's Pound in Toronto
Production on the 35mm narrative short “A Display of Emotion” wrapped back in June 2009, and now post-production is also complete. Writer/Director Stéphane Dirschauer wrote a charming situational piece about a man who unwillingly finds himself trapped in a slew of emotions ranging from anxiety to anger to contentment, all within the real-time story of six minutes. Coming from a devotion to French New Wave cinema, Stéphane was eager to involve lush close ups using the shallow depth of field specific to 35mm film, an earthy colour palette in the production design, and the immediacy of handheld camerawork in some of the more spontaneous and suspenseful scenes in the film. Camera operating on this project was my good friend and collaborator Mike Dawson. Gaffer Michael Armstong achieved our cool, soft window lighting look and helped me subtly supplement the available fluorescent lighting in an underground parking garage. Knowing we would have to rely heavily on the practical lighting in this location I opted for the Vision3 5219 stock, which worked wonders with the shadow detail and allowed us the flexibility to follow the action spontaneously.
Stéphane and I spent a considerable amount of time scouting our two locations in Toronto, and were ultimately very pleased with the look of Ezra’s Pound coffee shop on Dundas Street West and the quiet sterility of the CNIB underground garage in North York.
All camera, lighting and grip gear was supplied by Curtis Petersen at PPI Camera here in Toronto. Stéphane and I completed timing of the film to HDCAM with colourist Brett Trider at Technicolor.