In conversation with filmmaker DOUWE DAATSELAAR. We thought it’s about time to get to know our (new) Treehouse residents a bit better. Curious about Douwe’s biggest inspiration and favorite shooting location? You’ll discover it (and more) below.
ROBBERT: What inspired you to make your first film/video?
DOUWE: It was a winter's day and I felt like going outside. I grabbed my gimbal and smartphone and went for a walk. That’s how I created my first b-roll video. I had always been interested in photo and video, but decided to apply myself to learning more about it so I could eventually make videos for companies. I was at a point in my life where I didn’t know which way I wanted to go. At that moment, my new goal came into focus.
ROBBERT: Did you study filmmaking or are you self-taught? How would you describe your work?
DOUWE: I studied marketing and communication rather than filmmaking. Through online tutorials and a lot of personal application, analyzing and teaching myself, I made progress. My experience so far has been broad. I gain a lot of experience, speak to a lot of people and end up in different industries. Authentic, pure stories attract me the most. I want to bring reality to the fore.
ROBBERT: Are there any upcoming projects that you’re excited about and want to share with us?
DOUWE: Some people are getting a lot of inspiration during the corona crisis, and some feel confused. I’m somewhere between. I do feel more aware. I think there’s a story in this. On a commercial level, I’m attracting more and more productions. It's nice to be part of that and to help the companies communicate to their audience, and others, in these times.
ROBBERT: Which other artists have influenced you, and how did they affect your thinking, filmmaking and career path?
DOUWE: Peter Mckinnon is pretty well-known. He's a filmmaker and a photographer with a big reach. I love his film and editing style and get a lot of inspiration from it. I also like the way Matt D'Avella makes films. The technique of rather static and sharp filming complements the interesting and funny pieces of documentary he makes. There are many more filmmakers, but I follow these two the most. Robbert, you recently pointed me to a beautiful documentary by Robby Müller and how interesting that was. In the docu, Living the Light, the purity comes to the fore again. I love that.
ROBBERT: Now that you have your own studio and are embedded in a community of like-minded peers, how do you think this will affect your work?
DOUWE: At Treehouse there is a growing community. The bbq is on, everyone throws a piece of meat on it. Here and there groups of people are talking, taking into account the 1,5 meter social distancing, of course. We all find a passion in creating a certain form of art. This can be a great subject of conversation. You’re surrounded by like-minded people. That elevates you, and besides, it’s also fun.
ROBBERT: What if we gave you carte blanche, what subject and shooting location would you choose?
DOUWE: Good question… I'd like to go into the mountains. Totally different from the commonplace. Somewhere there's a dream behind a place like that. I think this has to do with choosing a location that’s not like what we’re used to here in Amsterdam. It’ll result in other creations.
Want to see more of Douwe’s work?
Check out his website and Instagram page.