Sci-Fi London Film Festival: Artist Depiction

by Liselotte Vanophem

6

THE QUICK SELL
A documentary about three artists (Don Davis, Charles Lindsay, Rick Guidice) and their work with NASA.

 
 

We’ve all got that question: “What do you want to become when you grew up”. The answers might be the “usual” as firefighter, doctor/nurse or policeman/policewoman. Some might even say “astronaut” for their love of space, moon and the stars.

Artists Don Davis, Charles Lindsay and Rick Guidice might not be astronauts but they do have an immense passion for the outer space and have been working with NASA for the last decennium.

They’ve provided the world with incredible paintings and now director Brett Ryan Bonowicz (“Closer Than We Think”, “The Perfect 46”) has decided to turn their work into his own by making “Artist Depiction”.

The documentary is the perfect opportunity for the artists as they can share their love with the entire world but sadly, it could have done with a lot more body and power.

Davis has always been into drawing and first, it was his love for dinosaurs that ruled his paintings but it didn’t take that long before the moon was the centre of his universe.

After being mentored by Chesley Bonestell (the godfather of space art), Davis started working for NASA and created their art for over more than 40 years. Starting from designs about new space colonies to paintings about the moon and to oil painting about an Eden landscape.

He also became a model maker for various television shows regarding the moon, mars, and everything that’s shining up there. In every work he does, accuracy, craftsmanship, and consistency are key.

As passionate about the planets and life as Davis is, is Charles Lindsay, a multi-disciplinary artist. He combines his love for the technology and primary nature to portray existence in areas such as the rainforest or the Arctic.

With his work his also make people wonder what impact the rapidly evolving technology such as A.I. have on the planet and what’s the relationship between scientist and artist? You all get to know it because of Lindsay.

Last but not least in this documentary is Rick Guidice. Just like Davis, he worked on creating design about space colonies alongside Gerald O’Neill. Getting his inspirations from seeing the work of established illustrators, things he has in national magazines or other advertisements, Guidice is a master in creating colourful, vibrant and lively illustrations.

Thanks to these passionate artists you got to see the moon, earth, and the planets in ways you’ve never seen before.

Sadly, the documentary itself might not leave the same impressions behind as the paintings. It’s divided into three big chapters, the lives of the three artists, and each chapter is made out of smaller topics.

Topics the artist are talking about such as “high schools”, “beginnings” and “inspiration”. Some are easy to follow but most of them are too abstract or too difficult to follow. 

You hear the artists talking about something they’re really passionate about but it feels like they’re just leaving out the most important information for us to understand it.

Ok yes, a film is here to discover and to make you think about the world around us but if you have to figure out every second what’s being talked about, something might be wrong.

“Artist Depiction” recently got its world premiere during the SCI-FI-LONDON Film Festival and so far there are no other dates confirmed. The documentary isn’t that bad. The paintings are gorgeous, the work intriguing and the artists are oozing passion but it’s just a little bit too abstract and just not fascinating enough.

 

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