Recently crowd funding sites such as ‘Kickstarter’ and New Zealands own ‘Social Backing’ have become increasingly popular in helping independent projects come to life. Its a way to get creative projects off the ground by getting small donations from a large number of people, and sometimes the end result is big. One successful campaign being the surf film project ‘Under The Weather’ by New Zealands own Damon Meade. We caught up with Damon to talk about where he is at with the project now, and what we can expect moving forward.
SO UNDER THE WEATHER SMASHED ITS TARGET BY OVER $4000 YOU MUST BE PUMPED! IT WAS TOUCH AND GO THERE IN THE FINAL DAYS TO REACHING YOUR GOAL, HOW WERE THE NERVES??
Yeah pretty stoked! The campaign definitely needed all of the time it had and with a few days to go it was still about $5k off it’s target. I wasn’t so much nervous, I guess I was just proactive over the whole period and as time began to run out all of the work that I had done previously helped push it over the line I think. I treated it as a full time job and did everything I could think of to get it over the line, and as the days ticked down everything seemed to fall into place.
CLOSEUP DID A STORY ON YOU WHICH WAS A BIG BOOST IN GETTING THE CAMPAIGN OVER THE LINE. HOWEVER I HEARD THE TV CREW SHOWED UP AT THE BEACH DURING THE BEST HOUR OF THE BEST SWELL WAINUI HAD SEEN IN 12 MONTHS.. MAZ QUINN IN THE WATER… I KNOW IT DOESNT TAKE MUCH TO MAKE YOU PANIC BIG GUY, HAHA WAS THERE A MEADE JAMMA??
Haha, yeah that was a situation. Looking back, I was super lucky that the crew at socialbacking.com had organized this Closeup story. I had driven to Gizzy chasing a swell and the film crew ended up flying down right when the tide got good on the best day. I’d been filming for 4 hours already when they arrived and hadn’t really got any gold, just nobody had made a good one. Right when they arrived the tide had just turned and Maz all of a sudden got 2 bombs – but I couldn’t film them as the Closeup gig was pretty full on and they were getting all kinds of shots of me – interviews etc. The interview took 90 minutes and during that time I saw at least 5 that were about as good as they get. It wasn’t a panic, but I was definitely in a state of disbelief that I couldn’t film at what seemed like a key moment for surf this year. But the Closeup thing was really positive and it definitely gave the project a major push being on primetime TV. It got a lot more eyes on it and was the deciding factor in getting the film over the line. It was a good experience in itself.
BEFORE WE GO ANY FURTHER.. ESSENTIALLY YOUR SITTING ON 18K WORTH OF CLIPS, HAVE YOU TRIPLE BACKED THOSE FILES UP YET??
Double backed up mate. It’s the only way.
WHAT CAN WE EXPECT IN THE LEAD UP TO THE RELEASE OF UNDER THE WEATHER?
There will be a series of 10 web clips that shed a bit of light on the places we’ve been, waves we’ve found and surfing clips that aren’t quite good enough for the film. There will also be blog posts and photos, framegrabs etc from time to time on longwhitecloud.tv or on the facebook page
WHO ARE THE MAIN SURFERS INVOLVED WITH THE FILM?
Filming started around 5 or 6 months ago and a lot of it was shot within 2 hours of Gizzy. I built up a good solid clip base with Ricardo Christie – making the most of while he was home. I also filmed a lot with Bobby Hansen, Johnny Hicks, and Maz Quinn. Some of Maz’s stuff goes back about 12 months and are just clips that I’ve held back. More recently I’ve been doing a lot of work with Luke Cederman and plan to do a fair bit with Billy Stairmand as soon as he gets back to NZ. There’s plenty of other guys who will be in there too, for example Alex Dive hands down got the best clip over the last 2 weeks and that will definitely be in the mix. There’s a lot of other guys too who I hope to get some work done with in the time we have left for filming.
AND HOW DO YOU SEE THE STRUCTURE OF THE FILM WORKING? SESSION BASED OR INDIVIDUAL SURFER BASED SECTIONS? OR A MIX OF BOTH?
I guess that’s what I have about 3 months to get my head around. I like the idea of the session based structure but it can be quite tricky in NZ. Wave quality plays a big part in this – and it’s not always about pumping surf. Sometimes we just need the right onshore wind that is good for airs, and a bank that breaks the same all day long so crew can try stuff over and over. Or a day of high quality waves. It’s about creating a situation where the crew all surf together as much as possible. Then it comes down to them all being out there on a really pumping day, or a good rampy day and all getting at least three A-clips each in one surf. I think a trip based and location based structure is quite likely in places, and there may have to be a combination of short section based parts mixed in as well. Ultimately it depends on what happens over the next 10 or so weeks – anything can happen and the process will shape the way the film is put together.
LASTLY WHEN CAN THE FROTHERS OUT THERE EXPECT UNDER THE WEATHER TO DROP AND IN WHAT WAY WILL IT BE AVAILABLE??
The film is due for release in early December and will be available online for free download or vimeo viewing. It will also be available for purchase for those who prefer a hard copy over a digital download. It will be hopefully linked through a heap of sites online, but the best bet is to keep watching longwhitecloud.tv for the latest updates!