Film à Sketches offers a divergent definition of visual storytelling. What propelled you to delve into the concept of an “editorial in motion”? 


The audience these days is very smart and can read the tone of a film instantly. At the same time, it is rather common to use lots of cuts and give a lot of visual information quickly. I wanted to go against this trend and slow down, focusing on the mise-en-scène and the small nuances in the performance, making the audience savour the moment. I had seemingly unconnected ideas for Film à Sketches so after some consideration I figured making a series of short snippets instead of a classic fashion film would be a natural way for the narrative to unfold. This way, it reminds of the fashion editorials where images often have different settings and are only loosely connected with the models and the tone.

What was the collaboration with the Georgian brand Situationist like? Why did they take the spotlight in your series?


It all happened very naturally. I came to Georgia for an extended holiday and then decided to shoot the project there. There are quite a few interesting local brands and a high level of local talent and craftsmanship. And from a whole lot, the style of Situationist spoke to me the most. It comprises a very unique look, impeccable tailoring and libertine spirit. When I was planning the film series, I knew that because of the very little action happening on the screen every element had to be special. Situationist’s clothing with the beautiful arrangement by Nele van Olfen, stylist on the project, gave a certain armour to our cast and united them into an ensemble of characters. 


I also wanted to achieve a look hard to pin down time-wise. Generally, when you see a fashion film, there are the cues which give you an understanding of which trend cycle/time it represents. I wanted to “confuse” the audience a little and use the cues to send mixed messages. Situationist fits this idea perfectly. Irakli Rusadze, creative director of the brand, makes garments that have a very nostalgic, but at the same time modern feeling about them. The brand is versatile and eclectic and it follows its own way. Some of the films are on a gloomy, malicious side, some are more humorous. Locations also range significantly and yet there is always a fit between the environment and the characters. The clothing connected the films together.


How did you leverage the rich landscapes of Georgia to add to the overall aesthetic and narrative of the project? 


Georgia’s nature is absolutely spectacular and diverse. You can shoot anywhere. However we wanted to try to find some less known area which would seem more neutral. We did not want to have a “Made in Georgia” cliche. We ended up shooting the outdoor scenes in the Kvemo Kartli region near the village called Assureti which was founded by 72 German families from Swabia in the beginning of 19th century. It still has a beautiful Lutheran church which is seen in two films. The water scenes were shot at the Algeti Reservoir. 

The storyboard appears intriguing. Walk us through locations you used for your editorial in motion. 


We were incredibly lucky to find those amazing locations. The fencing was shot in the gym in Vake, Tbilisi where the national team of Georgia (they are doing very well lately, especially in sabre) is training. I trained there for a month and then they were so lovely to allow us to shoot. There is no particular reason for fencing except for my personal interest. My dad was a serious fencer as well so maybe it comes from childhood. 


We shot the photo studio scene in Saburtalo, the university district of Tbilisi. I invited Roman, a 70 year old chess player whom I met in a chess federation during location scouting. He had no idea about an amazing Georgian fashion scene and yet he is now in the film which I find very cool. The woman taking pictures is Lika, local tv producer. To me, she looks a lot like Annie Leibowitz – I don’t know if anyone noticed it but that was the idea. The office scene was shot in a beautiful Architecture Bureau in the old town. I imagined a Pink Panther inspired film. These two girls are very busy working so one of the girls is so surprised to see the mysterious figure that she faints. Another one is so busy on her phone that she does not even notice him. That was probably the hardest take in the whole project as we had to make sure the tailoring looked great after each attempted fainting. 


Lastly, the 12th film is the first film featuring all models together, so it was perfect for the closure. We did think that it would be great to add some small joke into it so I asked our Sound Recordist to be in the shot. It’s a standard gag used in many films or sketches. It’s just another way to counterpoint the serious “fashion” feeling – not taking ourselves too seriously. 


Considering the visual part of the series, can you share some insights into the process of selecting and integrating sound effects and styling elements? In what way did the collaborative nature contribute to shaping the overall vision and execution of the project? 


The video material itself is very understated and subtle so the music and sound effects played a key element in shaping the tone. I wanted a diverse range of references to be used. We took a look on various crime films from 60s and 70s such as Point Blank, American Friend, Le Samuraï and etc. We also used some simple ambient sounds for shorter clips, to “fill” the atmosphere and achieve the dreamy texture. There were lots of long and enduring nights of back and forth sessions with the composer and the sound designer to create the perfect score. This department definitely took the most time. 


8 to 30 seconds seem like a limited time frame to work with. Yet, as brief as it may be, what challenges did you face while working on its post-production?


It was definitely a breeze to edit the project as it features one or two cuts in 11 films! Only the photo studio scene needed some proper editing work. Music, Sound Design and Colour Grading did take a lot of time as it was very important to find the right solutions to fit our tone. 


Maintaining a loose connection yet preserving individuality in 12 short films — how did you achieve this narrative structure? 


We shot a lot of material and we actually had a lot of different options. There were 15 films in the beginning. In the end we decided to stay on the number 12 as it’s a very symbolic number and it just felt right. The key here is that some films are just short snippets while others have a narrative. To me, this eclecticism makes the project more light hearted and interesting. 

What kind of response or impact do you hope to elicit from viewers? In your opinion, will this format gain momentum in the future?


I hope the audience will be brave and patient enough to watch and enjoy one frame lasting thirty seconds. And of course I hope the subtle content will gain momentum in the future. In the end, we have a lot of screens and something has to play on them.


What are you working on next? 


I am working on two fashion films at the moment. First one will be a dark Berlin take on the tango scene. The second one would be an homage to 60s European thrillers, we will shoot in Piemonte in Italy. 


Thanks for having me!

Video Director: Vladislaw Sinchuk (@vladislaw_sinchuk)

Cinematographer: Boris Ulitovsky (@ulitowski)

Stylist:- Nele van Olfen (@nelfenfen)

HMUA: Sofi Abuladze (@sofiabuladze)

Composer: Anatoly Volochay (@volochay_anatoly)

Sound Designer: Karina Kazaryan (@kptransmission

Cast: Mariam Atanelishvili (@nnaman0), Perry Ope (@perry_ope), Milan Lee (, Anuki Kapanadze (@anuki.kapanadze) @IC Model Management (@icmodelmanagement)


Interview by Tatev Avetisyan

All clothes from Situationist