July 19th, 2012 | Category: The Banff Centre, Midsummer Ball, Artist Fund, Canada
The Midsummer Ball is the biggest fundraising event of the year for The Banff Centre. It is a gathering of the most significant donors and corporate sponsors for a social weekend of entertainment and celebration. Every year the Film and Media department produce a video for the event to highlight the Artist Fund and show some of the activities that benefit from donor support.
I proposed a visual style based on environmental portraiture, photography that reveals a scene and the identity of a subject through an image of their surroundings and not just the person. So we would see artists in their natural habitat. The idea is to invite the viewer to observe a scene of creative activity but then for the artists to address them directly from within.
The starving artist image had to go- we are dealing with savy investors here so a sure bet is way more attractive. I wanted to show some of the more prolific artists that come through the centre rather than the younger newbies. Better established artists simply have more to say, more chrystalised ideas and stronger philosophies relating to the arts. Also their work highlights the greatest successes and the extent of what is possible with the right support.
In the case of Aszure Barton we stepped out of this style to show a more varied view of her practice.
The theme of the Midsummer Ball this year was "visionaries". So I decided to ask one question: what is a visionary?. In the end I riffed on this subject in interviews for a range of varied responses and coverage, but the goal was to make a link between artistic vision and the vision of those who support the arts.
All progress was discussed and approved with the clients (the development team) and lots of creative and conceptual discussions led us to this end. I really enjoy this process and my preferred way of working is to first establish and agree on a set of assumptions that we can count on along the way. It always pays to fully undertand in detail the purpose of the video, the target audience and the client message. Armed with that information I can make confident creative decisions throughout that lead to content which exceeds the client expectations.