Surachai – Temple of the Weakening Sun

This version of Temple of the Weakening Sun is an abbreviated cut from my live show which you can see January 22nd at Bl_k Noise. Please forgive my technical ignorance regarding anything video, and even audio – I still have no idea what I’m doing. We hope you enjoy.

Pre Production
We researched high frame rate cameras that were cost effective and came up short. The only way to achieve what I was envisioning, without a compromising work around, was using the Phantom camera. The Phantom Miro is an interesting camera which turns a few seconds of footage into a few minutes. It shoots in 3 second bursts, making choreography and planning essential for a useful shot. Luckily the Phantom has onboard editing for heads and tails which helps with cutting the fat and saving disk space. While researching, most footage we came across of the Phantom was clinical, uninspiring and more or less used for experiments and tests – we wanted to create something that was thematic, stylized and story driven. Naturally, I drew inspiration from the world which my previous album artworks lived in, works by Sarah Sitkin (Heavy Mask, To No Avail), Kraw (Heavy Mask, Ritual), and Emilie Elizabeth (Instinct and Memory, Ritual) and expanded on it. The Metal piece, made by Hvnter Gvtherer, and cloak, made by Wulfka, were repurposed from the Instinct and Memory album artwork.

The music was created before any of the story was conceived or written down. I wanted to have the soundtrack create a story through its arrangements and overall mood. Because of the constant versioning up between music and picture, its drawn out process that required constant access to an editor. The tracks were composed using the TTSH and Cwejman S1 MKII with the Arturia Beatstep Pro. The Prophet 6 contributed some background textures and guitars were added after screening a few versions.

Production
The shoot took place in Cape Kiwanda, Oregon over 2 days. A beautiful and deceptively dangerous place where five people died from accidents in the 8 months leading up to the shoot. Being a small crew of 3, we had to wear many hats behind the production. In general and with many exceptions, I was assigned to throwing the cape, Anj was behind the camera, and Francis scouted locations and acted as a general wardrobe / makeup artist. The first day was characteristically Pacific Northwestern with constant cold rain and overcast which obviously is not ideal for a mostly nude model and our gear. The locations didn’t help either for Zara, she was barefoot on slippery rocks, wet sand, mud and grass. Zara was incredibly patient with us, the weather, the wardrobe, and technical difficulties. She came over and watched the selects with us everyday and was quick to learn our unorthodox way of working.

Post Production
Zak and I passed picture and music edits back and forth for a couple weeks and worked out something that flows very well in a live setting. After some debate we decided that the full length was appropriate for a live setting (where you’re forced to watch) but too long for a normal viewer in front of a computer and decided on a concise and impactful edit for the public. Anj worked on color correction. Francis rotoscoped a lot of details of out the shots like tattoos and piercings, or the climax shot. I tried to stay out of the way in post.

Release
After considering several different physical releases to accompany the film, I felt that this was a learning experience to the many planned future endeavors and that getting the world to see Temple was more important than recovering costs. If you want to support, buy music or merch at my Bandcamp.

Created by Surachai, Anj Puglise, Francis Kmiecik, Zak Kiernan.
Metalwork – Hvnter Gvtherer
Wardrobe – Wulfka
Starring – Zara Luttrell

All photos by Francis Kmiecik
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7 Responses to “Surachai – Temple of the Weakening Sun”

  1. Lex January 11, 2017 at 10:52 am #

    I’ve been very much anticipating watching this. Thank you for sharing the piece along with the background production production information and insights. If you ever felt the urge to share the “full length” piece I know that I’d be very interested in seeing it.

  2. DW January 11, 2017 at 1:23 pm #

    This is your most impressive work to date. Great job.

  3. thekillbot January 12, 2017 at 8:24 am #

    this fucking rules. always love your posts

  4. Anonymous January 12, 2017 at 10:57 am #

    This is something really really special. Incredible work!

  5. Anonymous February 28, 2017 at 8:44 am #

    Do you plan on releasing the audio for download?

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