Aug 27, 2017

Two Weeks of Filming in the Canadian Badlands

With a number of recent road trips and travel projects under my belt, there was something especially gratifying about finally shooting a larger project like this in Alberta. In my role as the designated videographer / filmmaker, I worked alongside Canadian icon Tom Jackson, a group of talented influencers from around North America, and a great support team that facilitated our experiences. Together we set out on a mission to explore, document, and capture a slice of the "Spirit of the Canadian Badlands" through a variety of personal approaches.  

Canadian Badlands Tom Jackson Editing Luke

It's difficult to fully explain this project without recognizing that although we were sharing experiences around the Canadian Badlands, we were also each looking to engage and document in different ways. For example, in any given situation you might have found Tom deep in discussion and taking notes. At the same time one of the influencers might have been shooting pictures or interviewing someone for a side story they were going tell. Meanwhile, you could've found me filming a few soundbites, capturing the scene at large, or directly filming one of these moments as it was playing out.

Canadian Badlands Luke Fandrich

Part of what made this experience so interesting was that given the number of locations and events we covered, embracing spontaneity and rolling with what was happening in the moment became our default approach. On days where the schedules were particularly tight we often didn't know what we might be walking into. That genuine curiosity actually added a certain energy to a lot of what I captured - and while I can't say it worked for every moment, overall I came away feeling pretty excited about how these moments looked on camera.

Canadian Badlands Tom Jackson Editing Luke
Canadian Badlands Tom Jackson Editing Luke

One unforgettable highlight was participating in a peace pipe ceremony with First Nations elders at the historic Majorville Medicine Wheel. This incredibly remote location on the Alberta prairie offered some stunning visuals for the project, but ironically the ceremony itself wasn't something that we were allowed to film. Instead, the ceremony became a unique shared experience. I found it enlightening and as an outsider was honored to share in something so rare. 

Feeling further inspired by the visuals from the road trip we'd been on, I found myself watching Dances With Wolves that evening. This seemed especially coincidental when in a few days time I unexpectedly met Graham Greene (who played opposite Kevin Costner in that movie) while filming with Tom Jackson in Drumheller. It became increasingly interesting how a lot of these chapters began linking together as we visited more places and the project unfolded.

Canadian Badlands Tom Jackson Editing Luke
While I'm certain there will be more to share as editing gets underway and new images are posted, I wanted to recap some of what we'd done now that shooting has officially wrapped. Stay tuned, and for more be sure to check out my Instagram @editingluke as well as the Instagram accounts of my fellow travelers below:

Canadian Badlands Tom Jackson Editing Luke

1 comment :

Vi said...

Better than excellant. I'm rather happy that you were not able to film the aboriginal rituals.It's great to see that some things remain sacred to the native people.I certainly love what you do. You do it so well.