Passion Projects: 50|50 Sessions

By Chelsea Carter

Find out how Katherine Gillham and AHTOH//Anton Nelson compose, film and produce music videos in Vrumi spaces.

50 | 50 Sessions is a collaboration between a creative director known as AHTOH//Anton Nelson, and composer/singer Katherine Gillham, which finds different spaces to perform and film new song arrangements and original work. They have used Vrumi to find spaces for all their recording and filming sessions to date, AHTOH//Anton Nelson explains. 

The collaboration is a 50/50 split – Katherine handles all the music and I handle all the visuals. We started working together in June 2015 and we’ve recorded a film almost every month since September. So far we’ve worked on rearrangements of popular compositions – Enjoy the Ride by Morcheeba, Snow by St Etienne. We shoot Katherine recording the song live and we choose a different space for each recording and film.

It takes a while to choose the right place on Vrumi – we need to see all the pictures and talk to the host. We’re very specific. We need enough space for multiple cameras and a good, lively sound quality – it usually takes us a little while getting into a new space to establish what sort of sound it’ll produce. Cool and crisp? Warm? Deep?

The space also influences the visuals. For our most recent recording, Snow, we’d planned to shoot in black and white. The house – a small place in west London – just had a particular décor, colour scheme and lighting that made us realise it would feel much more like a 1950s’ piece with a blue tinge to everything and Katherine’s mouth picked out in red lipstick. 

The process is simple. Katherine will send me rough demos before the day. We pick the room and chat to the host and fix the times, usually starting earlier than the typical booking. It takes us an hour to set up, an hour to record all the different takes and then we’re editing. We finish in a day. 

At this stage, this is a passion project – we’re doing it in our own time and funding it ourselves. If we were to record this in a studio, on the clock, with the next person waiting their turn, there’s no way we could do it as frequently. With Vrumi, it’s maybe £100-£200 all in, room hire, recording, editing, everything. It makes it possible to be creative without worrying about time and money. It’s freedom, basically. 

We both work with commercial brands in our day job and we understand how important it is to keep the money flowing and do successful work. But it’s important for creative people to step out of that now and then and let the juices flow. You can’t do that in conventional spaces. So Vrumi is almost the third partner in our films.

If you'd like to start your own passion project, why not book an inspiring space of your own?

Posted by
Chelsea Carter
On March 31, 2016
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