Our newest member Elliot has always been drawn to film, due to his natural fascination with the creative scope of the industry. As someone so incredibly involved in their work and with a crazy obsession to create and bewilder, it’s hard to feel lacking in motivation and direction. When I spoke to Elliot, we discussed the feelings that come with the ups and downs of being creative, and it reminded me of how much I hope that the !GWAK community can offer people a chance to be understood and inspired by others.
Elliot is best known for his film ‘Starman From Heaven’ which features another of our members (Milo Wilson). The film clearly displays his unique visual style and interest in themes of music and fashion, while the high quality of the finished film also gives insight to a common creative tendency to create perfect work out of consistent pressure.
The film has original songs and was made on next-to-no budget. Despite this, it has some super talented cast members, beautiful locations and offers a true cinematic viewing experience. The film takes us through the sexual challenges that protagonist Eddie faces, the impact of his career choice on his relationship with his parents, his terrifying first efforts at public performance and what happens as his confidence grows. Using the varied backdrop that Brighton provides, Elliot’s journey rips along the seafront: from performance venue, to a confession to his parents; from an awkward encounter with a girlfriend, to another performance…will the ambitious singer songwriter triumph or will he Die a Death? Will the girlfriend disappear? And will Eddie confront his uncertain sexuality? All matters to be resolved when viewing the complete film! You will not be disappointed.
Elliot is also known for his stop-motion animations ‘Boabolly Gunther’ and ‘Archie and Pip’. Although he had no idea where to start, he was drawn to the medium and entirely taught himself. Beginning with no resources, Elliot borrowed and bargained with a variety of people to produce these films. ‘Boabolly Gunther’ was inspired by a storybook that he wrote and illustrated for his graphic design course. Elliot is clearly developing a style which involves monsters and fantasy worlds. He has always been enticed by macabre subject matter and hopes to work on some ‘out of this world’, psychedelic films in the future. He is certainly inspired by films such as Coraline (Dir. Henry Selick) and Alice in Wonderland (Dir. Tim Burton).
At the age of 18, Elliot has already screened various films at local venues and works with a certain professionalism that I can definitely learn from. He works with a variety of filmmaking techniques, frequently illustrates designs for characters and settings and even makes music on the side. His work is bustling with a creative richness yet he doesn’t always feel so driven as his work may give the impression of. I think it’s really important that we open up this discussion because I think it has relevance to anyone creative. Elliot has a vibrant portfolio of work to share like many of us but we, as creative people, are increasingly under pressure. Predominantly reinforced by social media, is the stress to constantly showcase our current work. We feel that it should always be making something better than our previous work and we feel like our worth is measured by our productivity. It’s unrealistic. I hope that !GWAK can help maintain people’s inspiration and motivate them a little, even when they’re not being so productive. We have so much work to celebrate like Elliot’s here and we want to share it with great positivity.