Tuesday, December 31, 2013

final mix

Just wrapped up the final sound mix for the final edit of Hangs Upon Nothing. Silhouetted in this photo is Mike Regan, sound engineer and contributing musician for the project, hard at work mixing at Another Country in Chicago. It was an 11 hour session. Mike has done so much work on this project it's ridiculous. Without him, the original score would have never been possible. We're really excited with how it's turned out.

The few screening we've done so far were with a near final edit of the film, and a rough audio mix. Final edit is now locked, sound mix is done, and just a few more technical things to finish up. Looking to arrange many more screenings in 2014. If you have interest in Hangs Upon Nothing being shown in your area, hit us up on the contact page of the site:


Sunday, December 8, 2013

next screening - Santander, Spain - Dec. 15

Sunday, Dec. 15, at 8:00pm/20:00h, Cine Los Angeles, Santander, Spain.  More info here:

If you are in that area, hope you can make it out to the screening!  We are screening a near final edit of the movie, the same version that has shown at the Honolulu Museum of Art and the London surf Film Festival.  The Cine Los Angeles theater looks awesome.  It is a classic movie theater that was built in the 1950's.  Carlos Restegui who runs it is a surfer and and someone who is passionate about showing surf films on the big screen.  He seems like quite a character.  This theater was passed down to him by his father.  A big thanks to Carlos for making this happen and for giving Hangs Upon Nothing a prime time slot!  Pictured below is a photo of the theater from way back.


Monday, November 25, 2013


Hangs Upon Nothing was awarded an Honorable Mention at the London Surf Film Festival as runner up for best film.  A big thanks to everyone who made it out to the sold out screening, and a big thanks to Chris Nelson and Demi Taylor, the fest's organizers.  

Here is what Chris had to say about the Hangs Upon Nothing screening:  "Just wanted to drop you a line to say that the screening of Hangs Upon Nothing went down a storm. The film looked stunning on the big screen and the show was a sell out."

The above S16mm film frame is from the climax of the movie.  I was shooting into the sun one morning with Mikala and Daniel, and I remember looking through the viewfinder at some amazing colors and amazing waves exploding and thinking that this would be a special session.

Thursday, October 31, 2013


The checkered patterns are seaweed farms, 16mm film frame.

3 days left until the European Premiere of Hangs Upon Nothing, tickets here:  https://www.riversidestudios.co.uk/online/performances.php?eventId=1111:3217

Magicseaweed posted a piece that Chris Nelson put together about the film here:  http://magicseaweed.com/news/hangs-upon-nothing/5727/

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

European Premiere - London Surf Film Festival

I'm very excited to announce that the European Premiere of Hangs Upon Nothing will be happening soon at the London Surf Film Festival.  Looks like an amazing line up of films:

Tickets will be on sale soon.  If you are in London, hope you can make it to the premiere!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Monday, July 1, 2013

world premiere: honolulu - july 20

Hangs Upon Nothing is going to premiere in Honolulu, Hawaii, on July 20, 7:30pm, at the Honolulu Museum of Art's Doris Duke Theatre. Tickets available here: http://www.honolulumuseum.org/events/films/13788-hangs_upon_nothing

I am going to be making the trip there to narrate the film live with a mic, similar to how surf films of old were toured.  It's 88 minutes long.

This S16mm film frame is of Demian Amar during a really memorable sunrise session. It's one of my favorite shots in the movie. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

atoll, orion, & a poster

16mm film frame of Chuck Corbett paddling back out in the distance. I shot this footage from the deck of Chuck's boat, the Tuaraoi, anchored in the calm lagoon quite far away. There was a bit of a breeze, and the 60 foot boat rocked back and forth slowly and gently. I used a really long lens and my tripod. In motion these shots have a really nice life to them, there is this gentle sway to them.

Two days ago we added the final percussion touches to the finale of the soundtrack, a song called Orion. Aside from deciding on a song for the end credits, the original score of the movie is now done. Orion is an 8 minute song that stretches over the last few scenes of the film. My idea for it was something that had the feel and scope of the earth and space, I also wanted it to be the sonic equivalent of a grand finale at a fireworks show. It's sort of fitting that the final song of the film was by far the hardest to create. 

This Rogers marching drum is a big part of the soundtrack, and you can hear it in the trailers. It's the deep boom, the one you feel. In the movie it feels like the pulse of the earth to me. That's kind of how I've looked at it in the soundtrack. You don't always notice it, but it's there.

I bought this drum on a whim about ten years ago from Dynamite Music in NW Indiana. I noticed it up on a shelf, and figured someday I could probably use it for something...turns out it has helped shaped this soundtrack.

Rough sketch of a poster concept I've had for a while now for the film, a lineup of silhouettes of all the surfers in the movie.

Monday, March 11, 2013


I've got all the final 2K color corrected footage back now and just started going through it today.  Really stoked with how it's turned out.  Couldn't be happier with it.  A huge thanks to Ryan Emerson and crew at Process Blue in Connecticut for their work transferring well over 20,000 feet of film, and coloring all the select shots that are in the final movie.  It was a ton of work.  It's been awesome collaborating with Ryan on this project.  

Here is Process Blue's site: http://processblue.tv/2/

This is definitely one of the most spectacular waves I've seen.  And the light during this end of day session was absolutely beautiful.  I shot this from the boat and it was during this session that we nearly got flipped by a very wide set.  My heart stopped for a moment as the small boat went vertical and we just scratched over the lip of the wave as it threw over just under and then behind us.  

Jem Cresswell shot photos in the water this session and got some amazing shots.  One empty in particular that I'll post sometime soon.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

shooting stars

I taped the trigger button down on my Canon AE-1 to get this photo, with a little pebble under the tape to engage the trigger.  That blur around the tripod is me shooting time-lapse footage of stars out at my cousin's place in rural Indiana last month with my Bolex.  I shot frame by frame, 30 second exposures or more, some up to about 5 minutes each, holding the trigger button down for the duration of each exposure.  This was the coldest weather I have ever tried this in, it was well below freezing.  I dressed for it with snowpants and winter boots and thick mittens.  I did this for hours at a time, and had to work out a method where I'd switch hands for exposures because the longer I did it the more feeling I lost in my fingers.  My coffee froze, actually turned to ice.
By the end of my first night doing this, I turned on my headlamp and found that all my gear including my lens was covered in frost.  By the end of the second night shooting, my feet were almost completely numb.  I had originally planned on shooting this out in South Dakota, and after experiencing what it's like trying to do this in the cold, I was really glad I was only an hour from home.  The shots turned out, even the one where the lens frosted up.  Really excited about that.  They were the hardest shots to shoot of this entire film project.  This was the final roll of 16mm film exposed for Hangs Upon Nothing.  I was really surprised by how red one of the stars that makes up Orion turned out in the footage.  It's completely red. I plan on opening the movie with shots from this last roll of film. 

this project on fb: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Hangs-Upon-Nothing-a-16mm-surf-film/246361802068338

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


Shot the final roll of 16mm film this week for this movie, and dropped it off at the lab today. I froze under the stars out at my cousin's place in rural Indiana, clicking away frame by frame, shooting time-lapse of starfields. By the end of one four hour session one night I turned my headlamp on to discover all my gear including my lens covered in frost. The next session a few nights later was not as frosty. I hope those shots turn out. Doing final color next week on the digital transfer at a post-house called Process Blue in Connecticut. There's a ways to go on the original score, but that's coming together nicely. And I'm looking into how to do an independent tour with a 16mm film print of the movie and a 16mm projector or two, mixing in our music and adding in some live narration too. That's the biggest goal. Stay tuned

Thursday, January 3, 2013

it's nice under here

S16mm Bolex film frames.  This session won't be in the movie, but I really dig a few shots from it.  I think they probably work better as still images than motion picture footage.  I love diving under beautiful reef waves and looking up at them as they pass overhead, feeling the force of them move through and seeing the sun shine through the moving water.  One of the most beautiful places to be on earth.