Thirteen diverse creators from across the globe contributed shorts to this online film festival. They had five days to conceive, develop and complete their productions. None of them used a camera.
Instead, they relied on royalty-free assets from the Adobe Stock library, which includes more than 16 million videos, 150 million still images, thousands of audio tracks, and sundry other assets, and employed Adobe Premiere Pro for editing.
"We knew many customers were turning to stock as their shoots were canceled" amid Covid-19, says Patty Nozato, marketing director for global campaigns at Adobe Stock. "So we thought, why not give Adobe Stock to some of these creators and ask them to get creative and make something that proves that creativity thrives, even in the most challenging times?"
72andSunny helped Adobe devise the project. You can watch all the films on YouTube, or see them with additional context on this WePresent hub (WeTransfer is a partner on the project). As you might expect, the work runs the gamut: happy and sad, uplifting and tragic, immersive and esoteric—it's all there. Most contributions lean toward an artsy aesthetic, relying on pace, narration and audio elements to convey a range of meaning and emotion.
In "We Fight but You're Fabulous," Daina O. Pusic presents wide-ranging and frequently farcical conversations with Mom. Images of fish, giraffes, old books and Earth viewed from space provide an absurd but oddly apt counterpoint:
One of the most striking films, Jasmine McCullough's "Classified," explores the use and misuse of labels across race, gender and sexuality, employing a retro-VHS look and other surprising effects:
"At the beginning you are hearing this audio, and you find yourself focusing on what's happening in the box," McCullough says. "You're trying so hard to figure it out—then, midway through, you realize that those voices are telling you, 'No, stop trying to figure me out, just listen to me.' "
Vivek Vadoliya initially intended the "The Portal" as a commentary on the coronavirus—in fact, it was inspired by a Financial Times report on the subject. But the project evolved into a surreal manifesto of sorts, a quest for liberation and transcendence inspired by the world of dance:
" 'The Portal' feels like it belongs in a gallery," Nozato says. "It is less of a narrative film and more of a digital fine-art piece. The scenes are handled with such taste and elegance, it almost seems impossible to believe they weren't shot specifically for this film."
Next there's "Muya," a deeply felt coming-of-age/coming out story from Graydon Sheppard:
"This process was great because it felt limitless," Sheppard says. "And also scary, because it felt limitless."
"The best part of the collection of films was seeing how open, personal and vulnerable the filmmakers were in sharing their stories," Nozato says. "It was also so incredible to see that they were able to build these beautiful stories using just stock assets, and in such a short time period."
What's more, the festival provides a potent showcase for Adobe's wares, as the company once again leverages cinema to focus on the creative community.
Each film runs between two and six minutes. You'll find extensive behind-the-scenes stories and creator interviews here, while Jason Levine, principal worldwide evangelist for Adobe Creative Cloud, hosts this hour-long film-fest premiere:
Creative Agency: 72andSunny Los Angeles
Post Production: HECHO Studios
Music: Epidemic Sound