Private Project

Still Life

Still Life is an intimate encounter with the world around us, a symbiotic interplay between image and sound that is a metaphor for the balance and harmony found in nature. It is an alternate reality which brings to light the fascinating life-forms that may exist in our natural surroundings if we take the time to see and experience. In this thoughtful exploration of nature’s cast-offs the question arises, “Is there still life in these seemingly inanimate objects?”

  • Richard Nelson
  • Richard Nelson, Lucie Gagne
  • Alan Sirulnikoff
    Director of Photography
  • Richard Nelson
    Sound & Music
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Experimental, Short
  • Genres:
    experimental, animation
  • Runtime:
    11 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    March 31, 2014
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    35 mm
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Richard Nelson

Richard Nelson is a filmmaker, musician, and multi-disciplinary artist living on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia, near Vancouver, Canada. His work explores diverse perspectives through integrated media.

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Director Statement

The film Still Life draws the viewer in with evocative natural subjects that at times might be unrecognizable. One is encouraged to move past "what is it" and venture toward a more sensory journey of sight, sound, and imagination. It is an exploration of a lesser seen part of the natural world that we may often pass over without so much as a glance, but a closer visual investigation seems to reveal that more may be going on below the surface and beyond our immediate levels of perception. Seaweed, old leaves, a small piece of bark, or a discarded vegetable root; all are participants in this film, and some stir up associations of enigmatic beings, native art, landscapes, mythology, and possibly, a sense of the mystery and beauty that surrounds us.
The basic idea was to have the images inform the soundscape and for the soundscape to lend the images an expanded voice. The goal was that neither the sound nor the images should overpower the other, but rather, that they should establish a balanced, symbiotic relationship, working together effortlessly to make each other relevant to the context.
The photography was done with color slide film using only natural light; and so, in keeping with the 'analog' methods used in capturing the images, the soundscape was created with a sensitivity toward maintaining a natural and 'organic' feel, as was the contemplative and exploratory pace of the film.