Blog
We Carry with Us

We all carries with us the potential for being wild.

Is this a good thing? Well, if we are creators then why not?!

Why is it that being wild equals being destructive? Why not take those impulses that make you feel like cutting loose and translating them into work that can help the world evolve?

I believe this can and should happen. I believe it is important for my own well being and those around me to continue to make stuff.

What if, instead of the following the fear of the “what ifs” and instead we made stuff anyways?

I leave you with that to ponder.


Darkness is important as it reveals the light

Everyone, at some point, feels a little down. It is simply a part of the human condition. We should stop telling ourselves that it’s somehow bad to have these moments. Physical pain is a way of your body telling you that something is wrong. Like that, these moments are pregnant with information that reveal what is wrong from another, and deeper, level.

Now, what I am not saying is that we need to feel sadness in order to feel happiness. No.

What I am saying though is when or if you do feel down do not be so quick to move from that place as it is the source of great insight into the human condition – into your personal condition. We are all different in this regard. Only you can know what your condition is like. Only you can see it. Therefore only you can fix it. Others can help but in the end only you can fix yourself.

11374415_169294680080591_395726560_n

So, next time you feel down do not distract ourself with some meaningless activity. Don’t just go and do something, anything, in order to make yourself feel better, or at least not feel bad. Instead use that time wisely. Spend some time in that place. Sitting quietly watching the feelings. It might reveal something. But be gentle while there for it’s a fragile space and one must be careful. Look too closely and the feeling will dissolve. Don’t look at all and knowledge will not reveal itself.

Overtime and with practice I promise it becomes easier.

 


Getting Stuck

I’m sitting in front of my computer trying to find something to write about. I’m feeling blank. Slept badly, I guess. Is this writers block? No…I don’t believe in writers block. But I do believe that ideas need time to appear. And that sometimes, but not always, they appear when we simply let go. There we are! There’s the idea for today. And that is, the notion of letting go and it’s opposite of trying to hard.

Letting go is also a practice. It can be scary and thrilling. But it is without a doubt a useful skill to acquire. Letting go lets me get unstuck. As it did just then…Letting go is the releasing of conscious effort and just seeing what happens. Some people like to plan. Sometimes this is good. But it can also lead to a rigidity in thought and outlook. When you see yourself getting stuck…let go! let go! let go! Trust me it will be worth it.


Silence is a Practice

Silence is something I’ve cherished over the years. It was hard to find at times. Something I longed for when I could not find it – as if life was out of focus. I’m not talking about the silence of sitting alone. I’m talking about the silence of a still mind.

Why was this? How is it that this kind of silence can be so hard to find? Surely it’s a matter of going into a room alone and sitting there watching your own breathing. Meditate for 5 minutes at your desk during a lunch break. There is your silence you might retort.

Well, here is the thing: Some days are too busy; some too slow. And we are often left in the middle, balancing on the edge between stress and boredom, ever aware we are falling left or right. So it’s a balancing act. This is the practice. Yes.

Now, if you have family or a partner then double the issues that prevent balance. Culture, lineage, and idiosyncrasies couple together to make the practice even more difficult.

Or do they?

Perhaps we can learn from each other. Working together and learning from issues of culture, how you were raised, or those “little things” that make you, you…or your partner, them. Working together as a team to create an environment where the practice is rewarded, not judged. Where silence is not a form of punishment but a practice worth cultivating.

But it is true that silence that is a lack of noise is needed at first in order to create silence of mind. Don’t conflate the two but do know that one is needed for the other to be practice.


The Power of Introspection

Introverts are not shy. Not always. How do I know? I’m one. And I’m not shy.

You can google Myers Briggs test, and do the test. It was helpful to me. I hope it is for you as well.

But what I wanted to say to you today is this: introvert or extrovert; these are mere orientations. Know this. Understand this. From understanding come unerstanding. When integrated into your own life it becomes wisdom. Wisdom and skill can then be used to help ourselves and those around us have better lives. Lead better lives.

Introspection couple with a basic curiosity will lead you evolve. Of this I have little doubt because I’ve seen it. The human condition is not fundamentally stable. We can change; we do change. Healing is the result.

 

 


Hiding?

Day two of this new daily blog practice. Yes it is a practice.

I’ve been reading, or more correctly listening to Seth Godin a bit over the last few days. Turns out he is much more than just a business marketing guy. He cares about the world and more importantly, people. I like this about him. And he has some interesting ideas about our future too. That is why I was listening.

Indeed, Seth is the reason why I am trying (again) to reboot writing here. See, over the years I have written long posts about philosophy, short ones about life, and all shade in-between. Nothing felt right. I did not know why. Which is probably why it never really lasted.

And he did not tell me anything I did not know already in his talks but he did point out something that was slightly hidden. And that is the degree to quite I hide. Hide from myself. From others. Those l love and love me back. What makes us do this? White knight syndrome perhaps?

How Seth pointed it out was this. “whenever you find yourself scared by doing something you are on to something. Make a ruckus!” Simple. Straight forward. And missed my many…including myself for many years. It’s vague enough to be inserted back into the readers life as they see meaningful. I did just that.

Firstly, here is why I missed it (in part). I am not afraid of most things. Change? No problem. Uncertainty? Nope! The unknown? Never – I have got on a plane and left Australia without much of a plan several times in my life and enjoyed that feeling.  Not for a holiday with money in the bank but with almost nothing. Because of this I’ve always thought myself quite robust in this regard. I’ve started projects time and time again with a real fear it might not work out but I’ve done it because I had to see for myself. I believed in an idea and myself enough to at least try, and when it failed (as most have) I have picked myself up off the floor, learning something from the process, and tried again.

But I wrongly assumed I did not suffer at all from the type of fear Seth was talking about.  No. For it is scary to be vulnerable in front of another. Indeed in front of you. But if we do not do this are we really leading a full life? I’ve banged on about leading a good life for years. Turns out I was hiding from it all along. Now comes the work.

 

 

 


Finding Time to be Quiet
HHDL thanka

Screenshot from a video I made years back while in India doing my PhD.

Today I feel like writing. I woke this morning feeling good.

I sat in front of my computer. Turned to youtube trying to find inspiration with a Seth Godin interview someone tweeted. But in the end all I was left with was a headache and a feeling that I am not honest enough to have anyone take me serious. It’s a depression place to be in. I mean I believe in myself. I feel like I can make art that people are interested in seeing, hearing. reading.

Finding time to be quiet will always make me a better man.

Clarke


Fineart Photography Project about Emotions

About the Photographer

Clarke_Portraits-287x300Clarke Scott is a director and photographer who draws on his years of philosophical education and contemplative practice to tell stories of human potential. With a keen sense for the profound and an honesty of spirit Clarke’s projects often reflect his own concerns for a life well lived.

“I’m trying to capture the essence of how we are. Be it a fleeting moment on the streets of Melbourne, or a highly stylised contemporary portrait shoot, in all my work, and indeed my own life, the search is always for what it means to be. This manifests in those raw and rare moments of vulnerability where we see through the mask we present to the world and into the essence of being. This is what I am searching for. I cannot explain it, really. At least not with words. It is something I feel. And I see it when I feel it.”

Over and above my film and video directing work I also shoot headshot and portrait photography under the banner of Portraits of Melbourne. I shoot actors, corporate clients, business owners, and individuals who want professional headshots for their business websites, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social-media accounts.

But I am very interested in the visual arts as a medium for exploring the human condition and much of my film and video work is about just that.

My first feature film, A Thousand Moments Later (due for release in 2016) explores the notion that love is a choice. That who and how we love is in a large part our choice, not fate! Knowing this empowers an individual.

A shot film I shot in 2014 called, If I had another day is also an exploration into the human condition — looking at grief and hope in particular.

Clarke’s work has been featured on http://www.cinephiliabeyond.org/clarke-scotts-another-day-complex-touching-filmmaking-endeavour/

and The Age run a piece of his work earlier this year http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/movies/monk-turned-filmmaker-clarke-scott-shoots-his-first-feature-film-20150430-1mwowt.html

About this Project

In this fineart photography project I wish to explore emotions. How we hold them and how we deal with them.

The brief for this project is “brief” and I want it to be that way because I want you to bring your own understanding of emotion to the project. I will direct you but it will be minimal when compared to directing someone in narrative film work.

So I am looking for various types of people to be apart of this project. You will need to be willing to explore what it means to be human in interesting ways.

General requirements:

  • Anyone with a genuine interest in exploring the human condition.
  • 18-35
  • Male or female
  • this is a non-paying gig.
  • artistic/semi-nude

I am hoping to exhibit selected photos as a series in the near future – possibly within the coming months.

In exchange for your effort you will get the high-res files from the session along with the final edited and colour-graded selects (copyright will remain with me of course).

If you would like to be apart of this project please send your portfolio and/or reel to clarke.scott@gmail.com and I will contact within a day or so to discuss the project further.

And if you’re interested in such things I recently wrote down some random thoughts about photography as a means of exploring the human condition here.

Below are a couple of examples photos from the first three session of the fineart photography series on emotions.

DSC03113

4U0A3720

4U0A5017

 


Cinema and Fineart Photography

Recently I started a new fineart photography project on emotions.

So I’ve been thinking about this over the past few days: Do Cinema and fineart photography have anything in common?

Can stories of human potential be rendered in the still frame as much as it can in the moving one?

Can a filmmaker also be a photographer?

4U0A3645

The answer to these question, I believe is, …hell yes!!

Win Wenders has published photography books for years. And his film work stands alone as evidence of the former question.

Glendyn Ivin an Australian director, and a source of personal inspiration, has published several photography books from a TV series he directed here in Australia called Puberty Blues.

So yes…there are great filmmakers who are also great photographers but the question remains: is there any cross-over between the world of cinema and photography beyond the fact they are both visual art forms? And if so, how?

I believe the answer to this question is both yes and no. Or rather the answer lies somewhere between the two, and exactly where that is will depend in part of the artist, not the format.

This is true because while filmmaking and photography are visual in form they function differently in how a story is not only rendered but also received. That is to say, both photography and cinema can tell stories and they do so differently.

Here is how:

Moving images are dependent on a relation between other sets of images for context and meaning, and a viewer will relate to these images as such. If no further information is supplied confusion will ensue but a filmmaker can also use this device as a method to deliver a big piece of information later on. Either way, we are always aware that if we missed something in a movie, more information may be coming to fill in the missing pieces.

Photographic images, however, are less dependent on further information outside of the frame itself. And importantly the viewer is cognizant of this fact during the viewing experience. Confusion may still occur but someone looking at a photo is aware of the fact that no more information is coming—even if unconsciously so.

Understanding this is all the information supplied provides the viewer with the task of filling in the informational gaps themselves—even if unconsciously so.

However, it is not as if photographic images must tell a complete story or have all the information in that single frame to tell the story. No.

Sometimes it is the case, for instance the picture below, that information is deliberately left from the frame because the artist (in this case Todd Hido) wants the viewer to fill in the missing pieces from their own experience rather than searching for some obfuscated meaning.

One might say that a picture must have enough information to tell a story but not, the story. And I think for this reason a directors creative motivation is as important as her/his aesthetic when it comes to the telling of story, because it is these motivational forces driving the creation of art in the first place, and this can lead us towards any intended outcome of the artist.

So if cinema is storytelling with multiple pictures positioned in a certain and very deliberate sequence, and photography is storytelling with an image that may or may not be related to other images (if said image is part of a larger body of work) and both have utility with regards to shifting an audiences perspective cognitively, is there really a difference between the two?

I believe there is for photography affords a greater space to linger over an image — to muse; to ponder.

In my view this is the power of photography — at least from a fineart storytelling point of view. That is not to say, this cannot happen in movies. It can. It does. But film delivers information over a longer time-frame and therefore is engaged by an audience differently. Plus, if it is true that meaning is relational in film, then the images must be less nebulous than they are in photography.

Perhaps we could draw a rather loose analogue with prose and poetry here. Film is to prose what photography is to poetry? That does not seem too long a bow to draw! Right?!?

Either way, photography gives a viewer the space to fill in those gaps from their own experience—to wonder and wander over and about a piece. Couple this with a degree of self-awareness and we learn something about ourselves from the experience of viewing the photograph. Not just from the photography itself but from the experience of experiencing the picture. It is as if the experience of engaging with the image shifts consciousness and it is this that takes beyond mere entertainment, just like poetry. At first we may experience the mere beauty of the words but as we wonder we begin to see meaning beyond the words. The meaning is found through the act of trying to find meaning.

Cinema on the other hand leads a viewer along a path of understanding. Like a philosophical argument it’s outcome to predetermined by the its author. And the author leads as carefully from pone point to another along a path of understanding to said outcome. And it is the relational nature of film itself that gives cinema this power.

4U0A3720

As I mentioned above, to some degree, I see my film and photography work a little like writing a novel or a poem. Both are special to me. I want to create both. One is a lot more work than the other but in a very different way. Both allow me to tell stories of human potential but do so in a very different way.

I love about both but for very different reasons.