On Dance Film | Derek Pedrós
On Dance Film
Derek Pedrós is a film director and photographer that trained in Tenerife and Barcelona.
Being an islander is more than a sense of belonging.
It is a mark that lives and accompanies you all your life, wherever you go or live.
It is feeling complete in a place where others feel isolated.
Free, where others feel limited.
It is sometimes feeling the enormous need to flee, and always the brutal need to return.
This dancefilm is about what we share who have grown up with the rumor of the waves marking incessant pulse.
About those of us who have grown up in a place where we have the opportunity to meet who we really are.
When and how did your journey begin as an artist?
I discovered my inner need as an artist ten years ago when I studied photography in my hometown (Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain). This was like an epiphany for me, it was incredible to find the natural way I think and feel, in a visual way.
Then I moved to Barcelona, Berlin, and Valencia to focus on this trip.
Along the way, I discovered the movement in the image with the film and discovered that I had a certain sensitivity to movement. This obsessed me and opened many doors for me to develop more deeply.
A few years ago I connected some points in my life, and I started to investigate dance, a field in which I am now completely focused, and it is the strongest reason to investigate and develop my career.
Since then, the need to do, to know and to develop has grown in me.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
I'm a visual person, and that's why many of my inspirations come from photography and film. And of course the dance itself.
However, I think that the world of music videos had a great influence on my work since I was a child I was very obsessed with MTV. I loved the intensity in a small space of time, the ability to conceptualize ideas. And the freedom to try new things.
Now I am absorbing knowledge and inspiration in all the fields I can: literature, illustration, painting, photography, film, music, and sound design. I try to read and see about everything. I feel that the more interests and information I have, the more points I can link when I want to say something with my films.
What is the general process you undergo to produce your films?
First of all, I meet a dancer who inspires me and awakens in me the need to say something. This something is usually a personal question about my life or a theme that I need to understand.
(For example in one of my current projects: understanding whether my passion is a blessing
that works as an energy to continue or a burden that will consume me.)
When I have this question, I start researching myself, my life and the subject itself. I discuss this with the dancer and try to filter this personal question through the character, life and movement of the artist. Seeking to achieve a perfect blend of life and ways of thinking and feeling. We design the boundaries where we can investigate, and make a safe area where we can
After talking a lot, the idea becomes stronger, and the images begin to reach my brain and I can start to mentally see the atmosphere of the film. Then, in an organic way, all the decisions such as music, spaces, color palette, sound design, rhythm, and quality of movement come in without any imposition. As if the film took on its own needs.
Could you describe a bit of your film?
I make dance films, where I use dance and movement as a language to express in the most concise way, subjects that are very difficult to express with the use of words. Movement allows me to talk about passions and strange emotions without being explicit, it allows me to awaken feelings and moods that are impossible to express in other ways. It's the easiest way I could find to express myself.
What would you say is the biggest takeaway from your film?
This question is hard to answer for me, I don't know exactly what are the best qualities in my work.
To answer I think I can use the feedback that I receive when I talk with dancers, choreographers or people from the filmmaking world that appreciate my work. They usually talk about the poetry of my images and the organic union of the parts. The elegant use of nature and the delicate atmosphere that surrounds it.
What was one challenge you faced while creating the film?
I think the biggest challenge was making all the projects by myself, with low resources and spending a lot of time in the process. In some projects, I have some help from friends, that always brings me the opportunity to be more accurate in what I am looking for.
But my biggest handicap is always doing everything all by myself.
On the other hand, this challenge brings me the opportunity to learn a lot about filmmaking, dance, and all the aspects of my films.
Thanks to that I gain the ability to deal with a big workload, have more knowledge to express my ideas better and develop in different areas that I never touch. I now think that this is necessary to appreciate the work of the people with whom I will collaborate.
What projects are you looking to pursue in the future?
Now I am looking forward to deepening all aspects of my work (narrative, color design, etc.), to know more about this art and of course about myself. This I think will give more strength to my work.
I am also looking to collaborate with passionate artists from other areas of filmmaking, people with whom I can learn a lot, and get their energy to take my films to another level. And finally, I want to internationalize my work.
I want to work with dancers, people, and landscapes from different parts of the world. To take on new cultures, ideas, and spaces to inspire my future films which will help me to grow as an artist.
That's why I'm moving to Vancouver this September to live in Canada, where I hope to continue evolving on this exciting journey.