Unsigned: Fernando Lazzari

February 10, 2016 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Trained in graphic design but obsessed with moving image, this director is worth watching.

Fernando Lazzari grew up in Buenos Aires watching tons of films from around the world. He didn’t set out to become a filmmaker but later on had the opportunity to use live action in some of the pieces he was creating, so jumped on it out of curiosity.

While studying graphic design, he started doing 3D animation and motion graphics, first working on TV idents and commercials. With a formal education in graphic design, he started with a strong foundation. He never took courses on animation or CGI, but learned by sitting down, watching tutorials and working hard on his craft.

He spent some time working at MTV Networks shooting a lot of live action in an environment that favoured experimentation, before he took several courses at film school as well.

Finishing the short piece Montserrat was quite big for Fernando’s career. It took him a while to fully develop a concept that married the live action, the type and the poetry, and articulate them on a two minute piece. But it was worth it. It ended up generating a lot of interest and was exhibited in many galleries and festivals. It was also the first project he did mixing 3D with live action, and since then he’s been exploring that path until recently finishing his music video for Reid Willis, The Slow Knife.

He plans to keep developing his style with a good balance between commercial and artistic projects. The constant advances in film, animation and VFX technology generate great tools to keep exploring new forms of narrative, whether for commercials, music videos, films or other exciting new formats. He’s interested in all of them.

Watch some of his work here:

Signed: Dropbear

January 15, 2016 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Agile's latest signing has a vibrant reel of graphical, stop-motion delights.

AKA Agile Films’ newest director Dropbear (whose real name is Jonathan Chong) remembers being enthralled by the stop-motion animations that Sesame Street used to feature between segments when he was a kid. He’d wake up unreasonably early on Saturday mornings to watch cartoons and always being loved being taken to the cinema. 

He studied graphic design at university and his love for film and animation laid dormant until his final year, when he discovered Jan Švankmajer, Hayao Miyazaki, the Bolex Brothers and Henry Selick.

After graduating he worked as a stamp designer at Australia Post for a few years and at other design studios, before deciding that he wanted to work more with moving images. He taught himself by making simple animated loops and experimenting with different techniques such as rotoscoping, stop-motion and motion graphics and found a lot of the techiniques of graphic design were transferrable. Over time he began to get more animation work and less graphic design projects until he became a full time animation director.

His big break came in 2009 after completing his first stop-motion music video for Hudson and Troop's track Against the Grain. An animation using coloured pencils, it went viral within days and was featured on a number of influential sites and blogs. The global exposure launched his career as a stop-motion animator and ever since he’s been thrilling the internet with his meticulously crafted music videos.

Watch some of his work here:

Unsigned: Jon E Price

December 2, 2015 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

A promising self-taught director with a relevant ad agency background.

Jon E Price is a self-taught director who grew up in Southampton on a diet of VHS film and 90s rap before moving to Birmingham to study, where he developed skills in concept writing and art direction.

After graduating he schooled himself in filmmaking in the day and worked at a comedy club by night before moving to London to work at a 3D design studio. He quickly showed interest in producing and directing content and did so for many sports, lifestyle and car brands, before working in advertising.  

Jon left Havas Worldwide last year to focus solely on directing. His latest film, Underneath the Noise is a short doc about the funding cuts in British Basketball challenging the 2012 London Olympics legacy. Starring players from North & East London and featuring poet James Massiah, the film celebrates London’s raw talent. It premiered on Dazed Magazine’s Doc X channel and the film received a Vimeo Staff Picks, Jon’s second. 

Whether it’s a factual piece or a narrative film, authenticity is important in his work and he likes to explore character led pieces, unearthing personal nuances.

Jon’s debut short film ‘Wander With Me’ is a coming of age tale about two mods, shot on location in North Wales. The film was scored by Joe Newman and Gus Unger-Hamilton of Alt J, giving the film mass appeall helping it receive great online success.

He continues to develop his portfolio, creating branded content, pitching on music promos and has a couple of short films in development.

Watch some of his work here:

Signed: Olly Goodrum

November 15, 2015 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Nice Shirt’s newest signing has an unflinching, realistic style.

The latest director to sign to Nice Shirt Films has had a short but impressive career so far. Unsure of what he wanted to be when he grew up (who is?), Olly Goodrum studied Multimedia production at Nottingham Trent University. In between studying he watched a lot of movies and worked for the Fire Brigade, a job that involved looking at pictures of fatal road traffic accidents and house fires.

For his graduation piece he made a music video – Consequences of the Kill by Casually Sunshine – and it did very well for him, winning in the 2011 Lovie awards and earning five official selections at international film festivals.

Deciding he wanted to become an editor he took a master’s degree in Audio and Visual Production, but he soon started to become dissatisfied with the footage he was cutting. He started shooting his own footage to practice his editing and ended up making a short film in the process.

His second short film, This Is Vanity, was an unflinching drama about a single mother struggling to protect her disabled daughter. The film was shortlisted for BAFTA 2014, BIFA 2013, was broadcast on Channel 4 and 4OD, picked up three awards, six nominations, 16 official festival selections and a Vimeo staff pick.

After further honing his craft on a few commercials and music videos, he’s signed to Nice Shirt films to take his career up a notch. Hopefully we’ll see much more of him soon.

Watch some of his work here:

Signed: Feel Good Lost

October 20, 2015 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Multitalented director Brendan Canty is building a career on the back of one breakthrough music video.

Feel Good Lost is the working name of Irish director and multi-disciplinary artist Brendan Canty. He started out making unofficial videos for music he loved and within a few months The Creator’s Project described his work as the 'Best Unofficial Music Videos on the Internet’.

In September 2013 Brendan made a video for a then unknown artist called Hozier for his track, 'Take Me To Church'. Made for only €1,500 with a DIY ethic – friends as extras and locals’ houses for locations – the powerful narrative video went viral and has over 300m views and two MTV VMA 2015 nominations to date - Best Direction and Best Rock Video.

Brendan also designs installations and live visuals, having performed his work at various clubs and festivals (including a visual residency at La Machine in Paris, Longitude, Iceland Airwaves, Athens Video Art Festival and Electric Picnic). Last year he was voted one of the 50 most creative people in Ireland by the Irish Times.

Now he's represented worldwide by Academy / A+.

Watch some of his work here:

Unsigned: Jack Flynn

October 7, 2015 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Filmmaking inspired by the interesting stories of interesting people.

Born and raised in Newcastle, Jack Flynn always loved art and music. In art at school he used to paint from photographs taken on his Pentax K1000. On his art foundation course at Newcastle College his photography tutor told him he had 'an eye for photography' which was enough to inspire him to continue with the subject and take a photography and film degree in Edinburgh, where he worked on a mixture of photography and film projects.

After graduation he moved down to London, about 5 years ago, and started assisting photographers, focusing on those who also shot moving image. Armed with a 5D he started shooting behind-the-scenes films on photo shoots. It wasn’t long before this progressed to being commissioned to short films for brands and ad agencies.

Over the last few years he’s shot for brands such as Converse, Vodafone and Stella McCartney, including an internal documentary shot over six months for Stella McCartney filming in both China and Japan.

Jack uses filmmaking to explore interesting people’s lives, telling their stories in the most evocative ways.

A recent film he shot (with fellow filmmaker Nick David) was at the Freed of London ballet shoe factory in Hackney. “The factory is a very ordinary building from the outside and one that you would pass by without a thought,” he says, “but inside there is another world. The contrast between ballet and the factory floor here was really obvious yet there was a real connection with the sheer physicality of both disciplines. We found some great characters working there and the their individual stories and experiences began to become the main focus of the film.”

Now as well as commissioned work, Jack is working on more short documentary stories of his own.

Watch some of his work here:

Signed: Linda Callenholt

September 3, 2015 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Love sign a Swedish talent with a witty, naturalistic style.

Over the past 10 years Linda Callenholt has established herself as a storyteller adept at directing actors and creating visually driven and nuanced films.

Having studied at Chelsea College of Art in London where she was awarded First Class honours and worked with Peter Saville, Linda began her career directing music videos, art installations and animations. She has since earned a reputation for her blend of realistic, documentary-style films and her visual ability.

Linda has amassed a strong TV commercial portfolio, including her Cannes nominated Italian Slasher film for the Elmsta Horror Fest that showcases her subtle, witty sense of humour and strong perceptive skills. Her ad career has led to film and television, where she most recently worked as director assistant on ‘Monica Z’ (2013), a biopic about Swedish singer Monica Zetterlund.

She’s currently working on a documentary and several short films. And she’s clearly a director respected by her peers, having been a film jury member for award ceremonies such as the Swedish ‘Golden Egg’, Roygalan and the prestigious Eurobest.

She is repped by Matt Francis at The Love Commercial Production Company.

Watch some of her work here:

Unsigned: Joan Guasch

July 20, 2015 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

With an agency background and a taste for experimentation, this Catalonian talent is one to watch.

Barcelona native Joan Guasch is fascinated by the emotions moving images can transmit, but he’s come to his role as a director via a circuitous route. He studied graphic design in Barcelona, worked as a designer and art director for a few years and then got closer to filmmaking when he became a producer and post-production supervisor at the advertising agency Tiempo BBDO.

With his love of filmmaking ignited, he travelled to the New York Film Academy to pursue directing. An audodidact all his life, Joan has also taught himself the skills of editing and colour grading and has found work in both roles over the years.

Since then he’s been directing music videos for bands around the world using a range of experimental techniques, taking a new approach each time. It’s served him well, earning him attention in the form of several festival features, Vimeo Staff Picks and commissions for more bands.

He is also a regular teacher at design and audiovisual schools, such as IED Barcelona or CITM-UPC, and ocasional speaker at design and film conferences.

He’s currently seeking representation so he can push his work in music videos further and use his experience to work on ads.

Watch some of his work here: