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VSCO – Make it with VSCO

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Creative agency AKQA has produced a three-part documentary series with production company PRETTYBIRD and creative channel VSCO, whose mission is to help everybody fall in love with their own creativity.

The films respectively profile the New York-based painter and illustrator Mónica Hernández, the London-based illustrator, filmmaker and collagist Shaquille-Aaron Keith, and the Montreal-based photographer Gab Bois, and are led by British underground filmmaker Jess Kohl.

VSCO – Make it with VSCO — Gab Bois

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Director Jess Kohl commented: “For the VSCO Make It Anyway campaign, I wanted the whole look and feel of the series to be a celebration of the creative process and for the films to be works of arts themselves. Through conversations with our three artists - Gab Bois (Montreal), Monica Hernandez (NYC), and Shaquille Keith (London), I identified symbols, tensions and colours that run through their work and weaved them through the films. 

I used strong colours to define each artist and give each film a strong visual identity and a sense of otherworldly etherealness. Creativity doesn’t need to be grounded in reality, and I was really excited to have the opportunity to work on a campaign which I could approach really visually, different from my previous work which observes real life. But, I still wanted the message of each film to be universal and relatable - procrastination, low self-esteem, loneliness - so whilst they’re dreamlike in their aesthetic, the stories are very much grounded in reality.  

VSCO – Make it with VSCO — Shaquille-Aaron Keith

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This was my first global campaign, shooting with 3 DP’s across 3 cities in 6 days. We chose to shoot on 16mm because it soaks up colour so richly, and is reflective of VSCO - many of the apps filters reference analogue film stocks.”

The series explores the ever-evolving nature of the creative process, with each instalment, blending intimate original footage with insightful examinations of the artist at work, to explore who the artist is, where they’ve come from and how they create. A mix of transparent observation and artful symbolism conveys the various themes of each artist’s life and creativity, showing how their unique life experiences drive every new creation.

The films are scored with abstract soundscapes, and include spoken interview segments that discuss the importance of creating despite any internal or external blockers, expectations, or judgements.

VSCO – Make it with VSCO — Mónica Hernández

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