Explanation of Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking:
Already set upon a path of making films that reflect a significant meaning to an audience since 2005 and because there’s no end to the twisting of colour, sound and consciousness into magical experiences, I finally coined the name ‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’ for this style of movie making, in 2020.
Using the standard tools available to the filmmaker of visuals, music, narration and timing of these, in this art form I’ve attempted to create a way that films automatically transmit their meaning to the viewer according to their geometrical layout, skilfully designed to express the inner workings of a multi-dimensional shape, which is often a Photo Collage Art piece that has multiple shapes encoded within it.
Each whole shape of the Photo Collage Art piece or appropriate equivalent has been carefully collated, and itself contains many other simple or complex shapes of different colours and sizes. The design itself not only resembles the places, people and theme of the movie and its various facets, but also holds the keys to meanings of Universal Truths in terms of how colour, spacing, use of shape and photographs merge into the timing of visuals, music and narration.
The Photo Collage Art work or equivalent art piece is thus embedded deep into the timeline of the movie, encompassing and hence emanating the very meaning of the visuals, music, narration and timing of these. Becoming its primary layout, a fractal form of it is then repeated into relevant aspects and sections of the movie, causing the patterns and flow of the shape to be engrained into its very fabric.
Not static, but evolving level to level, twisting itself inside and out again and again just to come back to the beginning and depending on emerging rhythms that relate to the meaning of the themes in each section, the requisite pace of the frequency of the current mood of the visuals and music is designed to rebalance the individual who’s watching the movie, pulsing deeper and deeper to expose the nuances required to maintain a state of balance at each level of their being.
In this way, each aspect of the movie is woven into a rich, multi-dimensional tapestry that resonates all the layers of symbols in the embedded design, into its highest expression of Universal Truth emanating out of its various facets.
On the surface, the visuals contain people, places, what’s going on and other relative factors of the overall theme, yet whilst nevertheless intending to be continually efficacious, the exposure of the inner and secret symbol is silent, except to those who are deeply perceptive and can read this art form of ‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’ at all its various levels.
In this You Tube video here below, Susan describes how she designed the first layer of her movie, ‘Visions of Bosnia’, which is still currently in its first formatted stage, using the ‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’ method.
Book, ‘Visions of Bosnia’, describing ‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’:
The making of the Bosnian movie from the initial moment of the process to actual production is described in much detail in my up and coming book, ‘Visions of Bosnia’.
Using the art form, ‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’, here two photo collage art pictures, ‘Crystal of Time’ (2019) and ‘Diamond Lens, Doorway to Infinity’ (2020) are embedded into the timeline of the movie.
‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’ Workshops:
‘Freeing your Inner Light’, Nov 2017, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Please click on the link here below, for information about this workshop.
Building a Pyramid at ‘Children’s Workshop’, Oct 2017, Pyramid Valley, Bengaluru, India:
Please click on the link here below, for information about this workshop.
Filmmaking career of Susan M. Griffith-Jones:
Gurkha’s Wounds: The first documentary I ever became involved in was in 2002, as the narrator for the Nepalese Gurkhas in Kathmandu’s film about their plight to win rights in the UK. They gave me the script, I edited the English in it and then read it out at the sound recording studio. That was the extent of my involvement!
Building the Buddha: Then in 2005, I was asked by Tagyal Lama, a senior monk of the monastery of His Eminence Chogye Trichen Rinpoche in Bouddhanath, Kathmandu, Nepal, who attends to his extended activities, monasteries and centres worldwide, to be involved with writing and reading the narration for a movie he intended to make and then show at Rinpoche’s up and coming 85th birthday celebrations that year.
However, the situation with the visuals was dire! There were many mini cassettes of footage that various monks had taken over the years during the building of Rinpoche’s new monastery in Lumbini (birthplace of Lord Buddha), but most of them were unusable because the person holding the camera had either sped it too fast across the crowd or scene while recording, or whose hand was shaking so badly, because the camera had been hand held rather than fixed on a tripod.
Due to this we had less visuals to work with, so I ended up helping Tagyal Lama to order and arrange them onto the timeline in a coherent order, as well as choosing the music, plus creating and reading the narration at the sound recording studio. In this way, ‘Building the Buddha’ was born.
Holiness Trip to Mustang: The next movie I was involved in was the making of ‘Holiness Trip to Mustang’. This happened fairly quickly after ‘Building the Buddha’ (link above) and again I worked with Tagyal Lama from Rinpoche’s Jamchen Lhakhang monastery in Bouddhanath, Kathmandu, on both the direction of the editing of visuals, choosing the music, as well as the writing and reading of the narration.
Delivering the Dharma: My next movie was one for the Abbot of a monastery situated in the upper part of Mustang, a district in the very North of Nepal, near to the border with Tibet.
As he was to embark on a trip to South East Asia within the coming months, he wanted something he could show to people as he was going around, to raise money for the renovation and expansion of the building so he could accommodate more young monks and give them an education there.
This time I went to a different studio to edit and complete this movie, taking the full driving seat as coordinator of the film, laying out the visuals and writing and reading the narration.
Circle of Immortality: Fate must have now deemed me ready to produce my own movie, as I found myself suddenly sponsored and on the road towards creating my very own film, ‘The Circle of Immortality’.
The next 3 years were dominated by producing 3 versions of this movie, culminating in the first actual ‘Kaleidoscopic film’ that contains a shape embedded into it – ‘The Circle of Immortality, Version 3 with English subtitles’.
Finally, I could really play! I was in charge of every aspect of the movie from concept to final production and in that sense, had a blank sheet of paper and could move the film in any direction I required.
After discovering what I was doing by trial and error, I embedded an art piece that I’d made in 2005, also entitled ‘Circle of Immortality’, into the layout of the movie. I then thought that if the requisite aspects, like music, narration and visuals were laid out across the movie in the form of that shape that itself holds the meaning within it, then this would theoretically embed the meaning of that shape into the movie and transmit it to the consciousness of the viewer upon watching it.
Another art form, Photo Collage Art that I was just developing in those days too, sprung up when I used an amalgamation of photos from 2 trips to Muktinath in 2005, forming them into several pictures, one of which was the first version of ‘Two Keys, One Lock’.
The second version of ‘Two Keys, One Lock’ was then included in the film, ‘The Circle of Immortality’, where it was depicted at the start of its different sections, to highlight their headings and explain their significance. Its shape holds Universal Truth within its very form.
The lifestyle of local people, Tibetans and the Lamas of Tibetan Buddhism living or staying in different areas of Nepal is shown throughout the visuals of the movie; from the highest Himalayan valleys, to the middle hills of Nepal and the flat lands of the plains touching those of North India at the border.
The full and detailed story of the making of versions 1, 2 and 3 of the movie, ‘The Circle of Immortality’ is told in my book, ‘The Living Pyramid’
KuDung: My next movie was ‘KuDung’, which encompassed the ceremonial activities around the Paranirvana (death of a high lama) of His Eminence Chogye Trichen Rinpoche, in Kathmandu, Nepal, in 2007. Again, I helped with the editing of the visuals and writing and reading of the narration.
Su’Dance: Then came a short, playful rendition of a Sufi ceremony I’d attended in Khartoum, capital of Sudan. Reading a Sufi tale over a photo slideshow of an overnight trip through the Nubian Desert on a bus adds another dimension to the visuals of the Sufi’s dancing at their Thursday night meeting. I called it, ‘Su’Dance’.
Ganga, A River in Distress: Invited by the late Mrs Leela Sarup of Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India to make a movie to campaign against the environmental atrocities occurring on the River Ganga, this tells the story of the plight of River Ganga whose overstrained use by man without proper care for the consequent environmental damage has seen her slowly disappear in parts during the annual lean season. To see this movie, go to the link https://www.pyramidkey.com/crossing-bridges/ and scroll down the page to get to it.
The Golden Bridge and Crossing Bridges: After moving to the foothills of the Indian Himalayas, I met the late Mrs Leela Sarup and late Dr Mulk Raj Dass there. I was to spend the next 3 years making a movie with them that in its first version is called, ‘The Golden Bridge’ (2009), but in its second version (2011) becomes ‘Crossing Bridges’.
Bosnian Movie: The Bosnian movie saga began in 2016 when I met Dr Sam Osmanagich, the discoverer of the Bosnian Pyramid Complex at Visoko, Bosnia, at a conference at Pyramid Valley in South India. Three trips to Bosnia culminated in 2 new photo collage art pieces being made, ‘Crystal of Time’ and ‘Diamond Lens, Doorway to Infinity’ that were thereafter embedded into a first draft of a movie, Visions of Bosnia’ on the Bosnian pyramids.
Susan describes the making of the Bosnian movie ‘What is Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’ and related questions ‘Discussion about Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’
Ganga movie: Having completed taking visuals at many identified points along River Ganga during 2007-2020, and having already made 3 movies on River Ganga, I’m now starting to create a new photo collage art piece, whose shape and internal make up will be embedded into one, final comprehensive movie about the River Ganges, as well as segments of it in separate movies.
This is the story of Ganga, of life and death, of wondrous magic and of healing. But which symbol will emerge, which theme of photos and which undercurrent of wisdom will be exposed through its precise use of shapes, their angles, perspectives and their colours?
These are still unanswered questions that I am endeavouring to uncover as I set out on this new journey of exploration into the heart of the meaning of this mighty river. These aspects will then be placed into these new movies on the River Ganga, so that the transmission of those essential meanings may take place to the viewer through the methods of ‘Kaleidoscopic Filmmaking’, with the aim of causing Mother Ganga to ‘talk’ directly to people.