FILMMAKER Q&A – Almost Hydroponic Garden Quarantine: All Summer in a Day (2020) – Garett Thomas – Director, Producer, DP, Editor

OR: What was the inspiration for your film?

GT: The “new” shelter-in-place for early 2020 gave rise to new ideas for what else to do on a daily basis in the household, and deciding to photograph daily the progress of the hydroponic garden proved worthwhile.

OR: When did you conceive the idea for your film and how long did it take before it was realized?

GT: This project was more conceived by seeing the existence of the hydroponic garden during the shelter-in-place, and thinking to myself, how can I use my creativity to bring to fruition for viewers a “fun growth spurt”?

OR: What was the most challenging aspect of working in a short film format?

GT: This project I already knew would be short, in that nearly all of it was composed of stop motion photography – there were segments for growth of the plant life, and then mid segments as well where I filmed them one frame at a time moving the camera throughout the garden as if it was being handheld. I hope these mid-segments appear alright, as they explore around the interior.

OR: What was the most challenging aspect of your production?

GT: I’m just glad that the garden continued to thrive for the duration of this project – there have been some since that if not maintained, they can fizzle a bit. Also, getting the stop-motion images in decent alignment can be a bit of a hassle, nudging their proportions and angles to fit just right.

OR: Do you have any advice for first-time filmmakers?

GT: Keep on filmmaking – do not stop just because somebody else says no. This process is always very subjective, and you probably can make it better when you think you may have finally finished. Some call it “gilding the lily” where others say, “there is no lily.” Also, take heart of a team that works well together – there is no ‘I’ in team.