Tiny Films – Fiona Watson

A salute to the day – a fly past by birds, which goes by the lovely title of “Murmuration” – a naturally occurring phenomenon. Filmed by artist Fiona Watson.

Fiona Watson has made a series of tiny films – lasting simply between one minute and two minutes in length.  These are very do-able for anyone who a camera which records video, and some basic editing equipment.

Here is one video recorded out of the train window on a journey, edited and set to music.  It seems to tell a small story, with a haunting piece of music and an everyday intercity journey (Edinburgh to Glasgow).

In another tiny film, she took black and white photos throughout her day and called it “A Printmaker’s day in 90 seconds”.


Most of her video output is land art – recorded by a beach, with stones, twigs, whatever.  One of her simplest is just the tide itself – sometimes going forward, sometimes back.

This is so simple.  All it is, is the tide coming in.  The film is reversed occasionally.  But she has recorded at just the right moment, where there is some pink in the sky to keep it from being grey-cold throughout.  And the sea has such meaning in so many ways – it shows the influence of the moon and our solar system, it’s nature, like much of life it ebbs and flows, it is like a breathing in and out, it’s movement, it has different moods….. it is a well-known metaphor.  So you can read meaning into it.


Creative Ideas to Take away:

Record a journey by any mode of transport (as long as you’re not the one driving!).  Edit with music appropriate to how you’re feeling or experiencing life at the time, to a tiny film length: less than 2 minutes.

A day in your life: take photos with mobile phone – you could even set a timing reminder beep on your phone to do so.  Next day, review and find suitable piece of music or sound and edit into a brief video.  What is interesting about Fiona’s film is that she has used the everyday.  Films which most people make and share on Facebook are of going to a special evening celebration, party, music gig.  But the everyday is interesting in itself.  Try leaving the finished film for a few days and then reviewing a couple of times.  Do you notice something with fresh eyes?  Share the video with a friend who hasn’t seen you for a while or doesn’t live nearby – and listen to their observations.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s