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  • Fishtown Films

The Fishtown Films Way - Other Life

We made Other Life in 2008. We were asked to participate in a Mashup Festival during the Source Festival in Washington, DC. Along with Kelly Mayfield of Contradiction Dance, we set out to tell a silent love story.

Kelly is a wonderful collaborator, and with her and her dancers help, we made this wonderful piece. I’m not sure it’s ever screened outside of the greater DC Area, but we’re still incredibly proud of the work and the film.

Here is what the Washington Post said at the time:

"...One of the evening's three offerings was an elegant and winningly mysterious stylistic melange. "Other Life," a 15-minute movie by Austin Elston, Emily Gallagher and Kelly Mayfield, told a wistful love story through balletic modern dance and stylish black-and-white footage.

Choreographed by Mayfield (founder and artistic director of Contradiction Dance), the film interwove an intense, closely embracing pas de deux sequence -- Mayfield and Boris Willis, in resonant interpretations of two lovers -- with sequences evoking an elegant boudoir and (shades of "Anna Karenina" here) a 19th-century train station. Terence Nicholson's melancholy original score, with its minimalist arpeggios and yearning string sounds, gave way now and then to suspenseful footsteps and ticking clocks. With enigmatic silent-movie-style captions (along the lines of "Doubt returns!") and resonant imagery -- billowing train-station steam, faces captured in an ornate hand mirror, fleeting glimpses of subsidiary characters portrayed by other dancers -- the piece was stirring and poignantly open-ended." -- Celia Wren

Read the entire Write Up here:

We shot it on an Canon X-L2 - which, just last year, we passed down to another aspiring filmmaker. Back then we were filming to miniDV, and while HD Cameras had recently come out, we weren’t sure that it was better than what we were using.


It’s quite amazing how things have changed. On our feature - Here Comes the Blackout, we shot on a Mirrorless Camera - the incredible FujiFilm X-T3 - with reusable cards. This change in technology has allowed us to move from boxes of Single Use miniDV tapes (Magnetic Tape housed in Plastic) to reusable (probably still plastic) SDXC Cards. And while the continued use of plastic in design and execution is still not optimal, not every battle can be won over night, and reusable is infinitely better than Single Use.

It’s about Progress, not Perfection. Make Art. Not Trash.

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