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A handmade tale 

The Handmade Analogue Filmmakers Collective invites you into its meticulous, experimental, hands-on world.

  • HFC
Handmade Film Screening
Tuesday, January 29, 7pm
The Bus Stop Theatre, 2203 Gottingen Street

Of the art forms, filmmaking is usually one of the most collaborative—anyone who's sat through the credits of a Marvel movie (all of you) knows this. But there is a different kind of filmmaker, one who makes movies alone, by hand.

"You're kind on of your own, in your own darkroom, doing fine work like scratching on tiny frames, painting on the film, sticking stickers on the film," says Dawn George of Halifax's Handmade Analogue Filmmakers Collective, which is hosting a screening of Atlantic Canadian handmade films on Tuesday at the Bus Stop. "This is a way to bring all of those people into a room and share our films."

The screening features 14 shorts from the region—"we have a sizeable bunch of films coming in from Sackville [NB]," George notes—that will be screened in multiple formats, including digital and 16mm. "There's painting, scratching, toning, some people have buried their film," says George. The screening is co-presented by the Atlantic Filmmakers' Co-operative which "has a fridge full of film" should your interest be piqued afterward.

The films' varied creation methods make them experimental by nature, employing methods like rayogramming, "painting with light on film," George explains. "You can put flower petals or needles on the film, and you're in a darkroom, and then you expose that to light. The film will be exposed except for the image." Caffenol—a combination of instant coffee, vitamin C and washing soda—allows the maker to develop film in an environmentally friendly manner.

It also means that there are no David Finchers or Wes Andersons in the handmade film world, meticulously plotting out every single second—it's not possible. "That's the magic of it," says George. "They call them happy accidents."

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