Underground Film Journal

Posted In » Online Cinema

Short Experimental Film: The Pool

By Mike Everleth ⋅ September 12, 2012

[vimeo 32115389]

Take a nice hypnotic dip in Christine Lucy Latimer‘s The Pool with a trio of male swimmers who show off their agility in and out of the water. However, using a unique visual distortion technique, Latimer’s swimmers don’t so much appear as though they’re cooling off in a refreshing cement pond as they do look like they’re diving into the surface of the sun.

Although not intuitively discernible via watching the finished project, The Pool is a complex mixed-media project that was made using found 16mm film “projected through a broken glass plate and captures by two daisy-chained video cameras (one analog, one digital).”

Abstract image of a man wading into a pool

Furthermore, the video signal was then further manipulated through a Vidiffektor, a custom-built signal-interrupting device built by James Schidlowsky. To see what the device looks like, here’s an image of it uploaded to Flickr.

The effect of all this distortion is a powerfully hypnotic ebb and flow of images. The shimmering quality of the water reaches out and washes over the entire frame, as if the entire film was perhaps filmed underwater. It’s also a very interesting inversion of the “cool” blue color palette of water and sky into a “hot” miasma of yellows and oranges, creating the exact opposite emotional response that one normally might have when thinking about diving into pool.

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