Shooting aliens in London.

2010 seems to be shaping up as a super busy and very interesting year. Being appointed official photographer for the Adelaide International Arts Festival was a refreshing change to shooting film stills, which these days constitute the majority of my work load. I love documentary photography and the festival is as diverse as it comes. With my faithful cruiser bike as transport, I found myself racing between gallery openings, opera, theatre, the writers festival, a fireworks spectacular and the festival club; all in one particularly busy day. It was a treat to be working on the second job in a row in my home town Adelaide, and definitely a challenge to juggle family life with an erratic work schedule.

Northern Lights building projections on North Terrace, Adelaide.

As the festival drew to a close several film opportunities seemed to be emerging at the same time, and I needed to play my cards carefully to ensure I was available for what I could only speculate would be the best project. It was the UK film Attack the Block that locked me in first and on the last day of the Adelaide Festival I delivered my hard drive of some 8000 images and jumped on a plane to London.
The first feature by writer/director Joe Cornish, and my third film with producer Nira Park and her company Big Talk Productions, Attack the Block is a very London film and far from the type of projects I tend to work on in Australia. The story centres on a gang of teen-ages who find themselves fighting for their lives and defending their tower block housing estate against an alien assault. The fast paced script uses London street jargon cleverly and has a moral story within its science fiction plot. I was fortunate to have the freezing northern winter break pretty much on the day I arrived, but it is still very fresh outdoors as we shoot all through the night in between showers, the crew a huddled mass of black, thickly clad, Gortex wrapped figures in beanies and scarfs.

[IMAGE] Attack the Block crew outside an East London housing estate used in the film.

Once again I am staying with my friend Dan Mudford in the basement of his Tooting flat. It is always a pleasure to see him and his enormous and eclectic music collection is my companion through the countless hours of editing I make for myself by shooting over a thousand images a night.