ISHIKI + videography + music + dreams
Will is an inspiring young, creative, film-hustling dude.
Joel and Mel caught up with this vibrant young videographer, filmmaker and aspiring musician in the online world. It’s been a few years since Will’s last digital exhibition at our Substation Art Gallery, but boy has he been movin’ and shakin’ since! We find 23yr old Will in Melbourne now, chatting from an incredible production warehouse! Read on for contagious energy and smiles…
Where are you in the grand scheme of things and what are you up to in the current covid-19 situation?
I’m living in Kew at the moment and working on music videos, doing stuff with the master MC Soul Manic on two music videos currently, and using the iso time to really do the nitty gritty editing, for example as I posted on insta recently, I’m currently on the 25th draft edit of the latest music video! (haha)
So yeah, we’re really diving as deep as we can at the moment just to make everything perfectly right. It’s a lengthy process and good excuse to fine tune the details! ‘Cos we have to stay inside so, yeah…(haha) what better way to spend your time than to calibrate.
How did you get into music video production? Can you tell us a bit more about your business?
I started a small video business with just myself last year called Ishiki, which in Japanese means ‘awareness’, and I really want to take the company into a thought-provoking landscape to bring up ideas and make people think about stuff. Like when a video’s over, they go “wait… wait… what does that mean”, and they watch it again! Eventually I want to be doing film and cinema, but right now I want people to be getting off that YouTube video and thinking, “daamnn that was something different”, “that’s actually really cool”…and then they don’t just follow the YouTube, they actually search something up, they actually think about something. I really want to push that with Ishiki. So that’s why I went with the name, ‘cos it does mean awareness and consciousness.
Tell us a bit about your first music film project
It would probably be a Close Counters gig, I think it would’ve been a 420 gig at 808, which I think was the bar in Hobart back in like 2013 or something! I just rocked up with my Canon 60D and shot their gig of about 100 people and it was a lot of fun! It was great. From there I did another gig with them at Mobius, then had a bit of a break for a couple of years finding my passion for music and writing music. Then I moved to Melbourne for uni which didn’t really gel with me so I dropped out and I re-found the passion for video’s and I did a couple of videos in Melbourne with some friends which was fun. Though small collectives usually end up failing, and that one failed as well. But it was a good learning experience!
After that I moved back to Tassie, and did some more work with Close Clounters. Through that I scored a gig with What So Not, which was great! And then that lead onto even more work down in Tassie through the Goods Shed. After that I did Alice in Wonderland, PNAU, and the Goods Festival. After all that, I moved back up to Melbourne and thought, “I can actually do this stuff, this is what I really want to pursue, this sort of life and career path”.
I guess it felt like it’s right in front of me and that I could really do it, and being in Melbourne would mean a lot more, bigger gigs. After about a year of living in Melbourne, my friend Hannah couldn’t attend Groove in the Moo to shoot a gig, so I went and filled in for her and it was for these two Melbourne DJ’s called The Mai Sisters, who really killed it!
After that set, I sent a photo to one of my favourite Dj’s who was headlining the show, Flosstradamus, a picture of me with my camera, and about 40minutes later I got a text back on my Instagram saying “Come on through”, so I ran through Groove in the Moo as fast as I’ve ever run before (haha)… I jumped up on the stage and just started filming! At first the stage manager was like “Hey, what are you doing here?!?” and then I showed him the message on my phone and he was like “cool, you keep doing what you doing” (haha). It was unbelievable! Cos I guess it’s a bit unconventional to listen to that sort of hard EDM Trap as your regular music, but I was just all about that in year 11 and year 12, on the bus in the morning, at school in class, it was just what I was listening to all the time, really heavy trap drops, haha.
“It’s amazing how one minute you’re in class listening to music and a couple of years later… you’re the barrier between one of the biggest Trap DJs in the world and his ten thousand audience members!”
It’s amazing how one minute you’re in class listening to music and a couple of years later, you’re up on stage next to the guy! And you’re filming him, getting a really nice tight shot, like walking in front of the DJ! Like you’re the barrier in-between one of the biggest Trap DJs in the world and his ten thousand audience members! It was definitely one of the greatest experiences ever. When that happened, I just thought, “THIS IS IT, THIS is what I want to pursue, lock down and turn into my career!”
What advice would you give to any other young creatives who want to get into film projects like this?
Focus on what you WANT, and follow every opportunity to attain it! Sit yourself down, look into the mirror or meditate, do whatever you need to do and tell yourself you really want to achieve THIS! You’ll feel good, as soon as you say it, you close you’re eyes and visualize it, you’ll feel good straight away. Then you just hold onto that feeling! Ask yourself if this is what I want, how do I go and get it? Then listen to yourself and go and get it, follow that pathway which feels the best! ‘Cos if it turns out badly, you’ll have learnt something from it and you’ll bounce back stronger. I know I’ve felt good before going into projects and they’ve failed, but I know exactly how it’s going to fail if I see that again. So the lesson you learn from failure is invaluable! And if you don’t take the shot, you wont make it so…
And where do you see things leading to for you?
Great question! Ideally, I want to be a cinematographer and shoot feature films. I’d love to have that directing control, like a ‘director of photographer (aka DOP)’, set it all up and do all that. I love the visual aspect. I live for it! Ishiki is very heavily centered on live videos and music videos and I think it’s a great stepping-stone. I don’t see Ishiki as being the be-all and end-all of my film career. I think it’s a great start and something I’ll always hold close to my heart. In terms of long-term projects, you probably won’t see Ishiki as the DOP; you’ll probably see ‘Will Joseph’. That’s the long-term goal.
Who are the mentors that you look to for inspiration and guidance?
I get a lot of inspiration from Instagram, there’s a lot of great DOP’s on Instagram and a lot of accounts for cinematography. A lot of equipment too, which is a big thing, like if I can go to a set and there’s a 40ft crane or massive sky box, im just like “wow that’s great!” so I’ll follow all the rigging accounts on Instagram to see what other creative things people are doing to achieve shots which is super inspiring!
If you’d like to follow Will on social media lookup @Videoishki on Instagram and follow https://www.facebook.com/videoishiki/
Shout out to Will’s friends @IcarusCreative on Facebook and Insta too!