Duke Filmmakers on Durham’s Artistic Bloom

Those working in creative fields know that your surroundings – from your studio space to the people you choose to hang out with – have a major impact on your creative product. There is also a good chance that the cultural fabric of the city you live in is a key influence as well. Enter team Durm from our Bloom Film Challenge, who’s self-titled film Durm was one of our five finalists and took home the Award for Best Soundtrack, presented by Silk®. This film explores how one young designer takes inspiration from his home in Durham, NC.

We asked filmmaker Prashanth Kamalakanthan to tell us more about the film.

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Discovering Gabe’s story

We stumbled upon Gabe’s story through a mutual friend, and we instantly thought the blooming of his art and business alongside Durham, NC’s own recent rise was incredibly inspiring, especially given his fairly young age. We’re Durham artists, too, witnessing and living this whole phenomenon, and we thought the story of the artistic explosion in Durham—as seen through the lens of its participants—was important and potentially inspiring for other creative members of the community as well.

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Emerging as a filmmaker in the age of technology

We’re filmmakers in a time of great abundance of filmmaking tools and an unprecedented public literacy for the moving image—we all watch so many films today, in so many forms, made in so many different ways. As part of this newest generation, these circumstances make it more important than ever before to try and remove the artifice from reality, see things as they really are, and show people how they are participants in both the good and the bad of our new world together.

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On his love of filmmaking

For me an early moment was simply shooting my grandmother, a 75-year-old non-English-speaking widowed Indian housewife, when she came home to visit. I remember her seeing the first moving images of herself ever and being mesmerized by the screen. Instilling that sense of childlike wonder at seeing the world fresh at every moment, I think, is unique to film. I’ve been in love with filmmaking ever since.

How do you take inspiration from your environment? Tweet your response @SOW.

Are you an up-and-coming filmmaker looking for opportunities? Sign up for our mailing listDurmpresented by Silk® (@LoveMySilk) made its debut on Pivot TV (@pivot_tv) June 2014. Not sure if you get Pivot? Find out at getpivot.tv.

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