The Dirtchamber sessions
Updated: Apr 13, 2020
The Dirtchamber sessions is a great name for a post and I wish it was my original thought...but no. This is the title of an album released in 1999 by Liam Howlett of 'The Prodigy' that I just found in the dark recesses of my album collection. I guess this is one of the benefits of lock-down, I have tuned down Spotify and gone old school...flicking through album covers, reading liner notes and generally having a very chilled time going analogue.
So, how is your personal isolation going? Here in New Zealand the rules are pretty strict but I can unequivocally say that I whole-heartedly support the tough restrictions placed on our personal freedoms for the greater good. It is very encouraging to hear directly from our science community who on the face of it seem to be getting a fair hearing from our government. Having studied Science Communication, I am often only too aware how ineffectual some scientists are at getting their messages across to the general populous, but in this case the overwhelming buy-in that Kiwis have shown to getting a handle of Covid 19 is heartening.
Yes, I know that for 90-odd % of the population, getting Covid will amount to nothing more than a nasty cold...but for once it would be nice to think that we could forego the desire to endlessly consume and spare a thought for the more vulnerable members of our society and to be honest...I really haven't found self-isolation arduous at all. For the first 14 days after arriving back from Australia I barely stepped outside the boundary of our property and then it was only to walk around the empty golf course opposite. Since my two week isolation ended, I have re-discovered the joy of taking photos and have been taking a camera with me when stretching the legs.
Sure, the economy is going to be massively impacted by the harsh rules imposed to stem the transmission, and we will very likely be in recession for some time with massive unemployment...but it has been nice to wander deserted streets and take time to stop, watch and listen to the bird-song that has returned with vengeance. Hopefully the global impact of tighter borders and a freeze on travel will see the environmental gains carried through this period of lock-down extend well into the future.
I am certainly not immune to frost-Covid hardship as the industry I work in has been pretty much decimated overnight. Though, people still have a desire to consume visual content so hopefully there will be an impetus to get busy telling stories again...just without the same reliance on advertising spend? In the meantime we might need to be creative and resourceful with images that had already been captured prior to the planet grinding to a halt. As a friend commented recently: 'archive shows could be the new black'
With this in mind, I managed to cobble together a short clip this week from footage shot last year, to explain the philosophy of Biodynamic viticulture at Felton Road. They needed some video for an overseas distributor to share with their client base so it was a good exercise to see if I had enough material to make it work and whether my logging system would pull through.