Surf filmmaking at the grassroots level has never been healthier. Cheaper equipment and the growth of video sharing sites have provided a fertile proving ground for aspiring creatives to compete with more established names. This autumn the London Surf Film Festival will celebrate the best of these projects, while providing a unique opportunity to see them on the big screen.
The independent festival is a showcase of international surfing’s best feature films, documentaries and indie films, plus the pick of short film productions from Britain and Ireland’s homegrown talents. Accompanied by Q&A sessions, talks and workshops with legends of the surf, as well as a gallery show, live music sessions, makers and doers and more, the London Surf Film Festival is the ‘must attend’ event for purveyors or the glide.
One of the best loved facets of the festival each year is The Shorties contest. While the main festival is open to all entries, The Shorties contest is open exclusively for surf filmmakers from, or based in, Britain and Ireland.
“The Shorties is a way for us to celebrate the short and support the wealth of surf filmmaking talent that is coming from our shores,” Festival Director Chris Nelson says Festival Director Chris Nelson. Until 22nd September filmmakers are invited to submit their short films of up to five minutes that explore all aspects and angles of surfing and surf culture through documentary, stop-frame, animation or anything in between. In this competition, it’s not about whether your waves are big or small, it’s about the way you chose to shoot them. Or don’t. After all there’s more than one way to tell a surf story.
Shortlisted entries will be showcased on the big screen as part of the 2013 London Surf Film Festival programme. These films will be judged in the category of LS/FF Shortie of the Year by the screening panel, comprised of some of the most influential names in surfing. “It’s a real opportunity for homegrown talents to flex their creative muscles on the world stage,” says Chris Nelson. “Previous winning Shorties include ‘Uncommon Ideals’ by Chris McClean and Mark Waters and ‘The Shaper‘ by Crayfish Films, both films going to make an impact globally, scooping numerous awards.”
Despite some tedious trends for grainy filters, interminable lens flares and super-slow-motion, wave capturers around the world continue to push the level of their art form, whether it be through innovative angles, pioneering locations, or challenging subject matter, and those short-listed at the London Film Festival represent clotted cream of the crop.