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Alchemy (Starring Leah Tokelove)

Ed Andrews, a filmmaker I've crossed paths with in my freelance life, contacted us with a new video featuring Sideburn favourite, Leah Tokelove. This is what he says about his new film...

I'm a freelance film director and Director of Photography. I've shot a number of documentary films on motorcycles for the likes of Influx and Dainese, and generally been interested in flat track racing for a number of years. I find it really exciting, because there's always an element of 'teetering on the brink' which I find compelling. It's almost like you are watching the rider gamble with each corner - seeing how close they can push at the edge of disaster. And it looks stylish as hell as well! I'm afraid at the moment I'm more of a voyeur than a participant but I do intend to give it a try at some point soon.

Early in 2016, I worked as DoP on an ad for BikeSure that starred Leah riding around the King's Lynn track wearing different types of helmet. [see below]

I really enjoyed watching Leah ride. She looked so comfortable on the bike and she came across well on camera. A year or so later, I dropped her a line about shooting something random, arty and non-documentary just for fun. She was up for it.

While talking to Leah, she mentioned about her dreaming a lot about racing, about waking up from vivid dreams and having that moment of confusion whether it was real or not. I think dreaming about doing something shows how much you love it. It's infected your subconscious I heard Alan Moore [famous graphic novel author] talking on a podcast about the dreams being a genuine reality, just a non-embodied one, and it worked with the visuals. It seemed like a better way to present the idea instead of interview soundbites (I do a lot of that in my professional work). Also, some friends of mine are in a band called Concrete Disco and their new single Alchemy felt right too. It all came together like a Jacquard loom!

I make films for a living, but I also do it as a hobby - I love it. I do a lot of side projects as it allows you to be experimental with ideas and have complete creative freedom. I really wanted to shoot with the Super16 film aesthetic to reflect get the coarse, chaotic and dirty nature of the sport. I used vintage Zeiss S16 lenses on a modern cinema camera, and had a lot of fun making it.

Read our full feature on Leah is Sideburn 25

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