Cardboard Citizens: St Albans

Last summer, I was working on a documentary in St Albans about the topic of homelessness. It was a pretty eye-opening experience for reasons I expected, and reasons that would never have come to mind. But my favourite part of the summer-long experience, was meeting the people of Cardboard Citizens.

I documented their work over a two-week period with homeless participants as they worked to build a theatre performance for at the end of that fortnight. None of the participants had experience of performing in front of an audience before, so it was interesting watching Terry and Marc cultivate a team mentality in the room, help them push through the nerves of performing on-stage, and design and build the performance’s story from scratch in that time.

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Jade Helliwell @ Nashville Meets London 2018

One day, last summer, I got a DM from Jade. Out of the blue, she said she really liked the tour stuff I’d been producing for Sarah Darling and was wondering if I’d be up for documenting her performance at Nashville Meets London.

It was hard to say no, when she’d asked so politely. Especially after talking on the phone to her the night before and seeing how easygoing she was about the whole thing.

So, I got out of bed early one morning, after signing a lot of intimidating paperwork from the people of Canary Wharf promising them I wasn’t going to be a moron, and headed in to the event.

Turns out, NML is a pretty big deal - which explained the paperwork.

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ZERO

This whole story starts way back in 2013 when I wrote a short sketch script about a superhero. It was called “ZERO” and was a big metaphor for me trying to make films whilst working to pay off uni debt coming off the graduation buzz of university - big fish, little pond and all that.

It was fun and I made a cool little mask for the character of “Wonderman”, but I just wasn’t satisfied with how I shot it. I’d never shot anything that should make people laugh before - intentionally anyway. So, it just gathered dust and was always something I’d talk to Peter, the main actor, about maybe revisiting someday.

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Adée - Hold It Against You

Not long after I’d met Adée in Sweden last September, we’d started talking about potentially collaborating when she was working in the UK in November. I’d pitched her a rough idea I had for a music video inspired by the methods and mindset of BROCKHAMPTON.

It was something that had been rattling around my head for all of summer, that idea of how fast we consume new content and how quickly it becomes irrelevant - post something on Instagram right now, it’ll be so far down everyone’s feeds in a couple of hours, a lot of your followers/friends/family won’t see it.

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Adée - International Women's Day 2019

I met Adée whilst in Sweden on tour with Elle Exxe last year. We clicked straight away, talking about her and my influences from the Hip Hop world. I talked to her about how her delivery reminded me of Vic Mensa and the content was very Noname-esque. It was refreshing to come across someone who got what I was talking about in ideas, and was very gracious about the fact I was slightly deafened by the venue’s sound system and the fact I’d had something like four hours of sleep the night before.

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