"There is a passion for hunting something deeply implanted in the human breast." - Charles Dickens
Every year around this time as the air becomes crisp and colors fall from their lofty heights to the audible crunch beneath your feet, we know it is time once again for the age old tradition of hunting. It marks the passage of one season in time to the next for many who inhabit life in the Midwest.
Although we are from the Midwest, it's a far off assumption that we are all avid hunters and have knowledge that runs deep in this area. The subject of hunting and its importance to this region came to us in a roundabout way a number of years ago during the initial stages of casting for a print based project. We were in search of male talent during the height of hunting season and much to our surprise it was difficult to find men available for modeling via our local talent resources. Ultimately we did end up with our talent, but it was more of a process than we had anticipated due to the popularity of the hunting season.
To date, "of Feather & Brace" is one of the lengthiest projects we have undertaken, beginning as a kernel of an idea this time last year. It is also one of the most collaborative pieces we have been involved with. From beginning to end, this project has brought together several masters of their craft spanning the filming, on location sound capture, editing, grading, sound design, graphics, and animation of what would be the final piece "of Feather & Brace." While those of us involved are not hunters ourselves, we knew there was a visual story to tell as well as a level of passion and devotion that carries from one generation to the next. Nick Nalezny, our subject as well as the location he recommended could not have been a better fit for the narrative we set out to explore and document.
Editor Steve Shepherd "Shep" of Spotnik commented on the creative editing process.
"The footage really lent itself to a natural, gentle weaving. The opportunity to blend images in a classic way was evident when first seeing the dailies. Because of the strong point of view, and rich varied compositions, it was fun to play with the three different areas: Home Base, getting to "the spot", and being at the spot. Playing not only with the framing, but depth of the shots, letting some of the cuts (or transitions) happen within a shot through a focus shift or movement of a tree or person."
Through Steve we were connected with Oscar Oboza, an expert colorist at Pixel Farm who we were excited to hear was interested in working on the grading / coloring of the project. Oscar provided great insight and perspective, bringing the color to a point that matched the look and feel of the color we attained with the stills we had shot and colored for reference.
Once we had picture lock on the edit and the color work was underway, we connected with Dave Schroeder of Pilotvibe to finesse the ambient location and interview audio captured by Patrick Schaefer. Dave was able to shape the audio in his own unique way adding an ethereal element to the piece as a whole. The original music and reverberating narrative take this project to another level in terms of blending the visuals with the creative element of custom sound design. Eight Hour Day was once again tapped for the design of graphics and credits. Elemental Motion Media brought the graphic design work to life through animating the various components as they do so well.
Every element in the process of creating "of Feather & Brace" has been crucial to the overall final picture. We couldn't have accomplished this without everyone's involvement from concept to the finished project featured here. A heartfelt thank you to everyone we worked with.
We would also like to thank Tony Franklin for his insight, enthusiasm, and dedication to the creative process to help bring this idea from the sketch pad to the screen as a completed motion piece.
Enjoy and please spread the word of this project's launch. A behind the scenes edit is being cut and will be posted in days ahead shedding further light on our time exploring life through the eyes of those that carry on this fall tradition.