Filmmaker Josh Brine reminds us just how good simple can be in Creativity is Intelligence Having Fun, which follows brothers Jacob and Luke Cowdin as they get creative with some scrap wood from their Portland, Oregon backyard.
We talked to Josh about filming the brothers, having dogs on the set and why authenticity matters.
Mountain Life: How did you find Jacob and Luke Cowdin (or did they find you)?
Josh Brine:Gratefully, Jacob and Luke Cowdin have been two of my dearest friends for the past few years. I met them through my wife whom has known them several years.
ML: What was the inspiration behind the video?
JB: The inspiration for this video was born in a pub on a late weekday night. Between beers and our love of skateboarding the idea was raised, what if we built a shortboard? You know, from scratch? Naturally, the lightbulb went off and the desire to film this process came next. Likewise another beer.
ML: The set-up is refreshingly simple. Talk about your vision.
JB: My vision was to make a story that brought out the simplicity and honesty in Jacob and Luke’s approach to building their shortboard. They create and design because they love creating and designing, not because of the money or reputation. Therefore, when I began creating this story my priority was to keep the sincerity of their craft unharmed. Too often I think filmmakers, audio producers, you name it, tamper too much with the “product” that it loses its authenticity: the very thing that drew the filmmaker or whoever to the story in the first place. So, for me this meant intentional handheld camera-work, fewer produced shots and having fun.
ML: Anything really great (or really difficult) happen while filming?
JB: Hank, my dog (well, puppy back then), fell asleep in the wood chip pile. And Jacob landed a really sweet nose manual I was lucky to capture. Other than that the day was really fun and relaxed.
ML: Is there some implied commentary about reducing our waste, or are we reading into it too much?
JB: I’m ashamed to say: no implied commentary about reducing our waste.
ML: What’s next for you?
JB: Nothing specifically. I suppose, continuing to enjoy filmmaking. I try not to force films or stories anymore. I prefer to wait for the lightbulb to go off.