Text of the PoemThe Hills
It is too late in the year for such weeping, I tell you, be still, the winds of our sighing have left the hills in disarray and it is late, now, for us to be singing like this, undressed, together, speaking quietly, as if to forget just how late. It is just. How late? As if to forget speaking quietly, undressed together, to be sighing like this. And it is late, now, for us, to have left the hills in disarray, the winds of our singing. I tell you, be still for such weeping. In the year too late. It is. Too late in the year. For such weeping, I tell you, be still. The winds of our sighing have left the hills. In disarray, and it is late. Now, for us to be singing like this, undressed, together, speaking quietly. As if. To forget. Just. How late it is.
Process NotesThe impetus for this film-poem came in the same way as Shell of the World began--Valerie noticed a mesmerising pattern of shadows on a wall and filmed it with her iPhone. We decided to use the text of "The Hills", which we felt would allow for more musical dialogue with the piano than a narrative or highly imagistic piece might. To keep in harmony with this interplay of the music and words, I composited natural images together, using the shadow footage to combine them into organic textures.
Technical NotesI used ffmpeg to deconstruct the iPhone footage of shadows into still frames. I then panned over nature texture images from openfootage.net in iMovie, and deconstructed these videos as well. I then used the ImageMagick convert command to create a shell script that loops through each still, compositing images together using the corresponding shadow still's black and white values as an alpha transparency mask. I did this in two passes:
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