The surf movie is a perpetually evolving phenomenon. We have seen new lens filters, innovative camera angles, novel locations, generic mutation and all manner of eccentric soundtracks. So what more can be done to push the artistic boundaries of this much loved genre? Award winning British filmmaker, Chris McClean, isn’t sure if he has the answer.
Monday 2nd September will see Chris breaking new ground with his latest film Urchin Howl which premieres exclusively through Instagram – a first for a surf film. Urchin Howl will roll out through the platform across seven days with a new 15 second episode presented daily at 1200 GMT. Showcasing North Sea barrels, grinding Irish point breaks, hollow Central American beachies and gnarly Scottish Slabs, it features the talents of some of the most exciting names in European surfing: Kepa Acero, Fergal Smith, Freddie Meadows, Gabe Davies, Nico Von Rupp and Reubyn Ash.
Perhaps it’s a dark alley from which he will quickly retreat, or maybe internet attention spans will shrink to such an extent over the coming years that 15 seconds will seem an eternity. McClean remains open minded about the manifold mediums through which wave riding may be transmitted.
“I like the idea of presenting surf film through a variety of formats, from the live cinematic experience with an audience, to the challenge of short format digital bytes,” says Chris. “It was an idea I was thinking would work with a series of teasers for various projects, but ended up really liking how it looked. I threw the idea to CJ Mirra, he came back with the killer track that worked well with the choppy quirky style, so we ran with it. It’s awkward but that’s what I like about it.”
Chris McClean exploded onto the world stage in 2011 with his short film Uncommon Ideals. Capturing the frigid delights of the North Sea through sublime cinematography, evocative poetry and a haunting soundtrack from UNKLE, it swept all before it on the film festival circuit. In February this year his follow up Beyond the Scars beamed the Doggerland project into the homes of the masses via terrestrial TV.
For more information visit: http://urchinhowl.tumblr.com/