Lucidity 2013 has come and gone, leaving 6000 souls filled with love and inspiration, new friends and new perspectives. As time passes and everyday tasks fill our consciousness, we might find ourselves wondering: “Did this really happen?” and “what does it all mean?” We have thousands of amazing photos showing us that yes, it did happen. We are also very grateful for the talented filmmakers who have created beautiful pieces bearing witness to those three magical days in April.
One film that touched our hearts is “Journey to Lucidity, the Planted Seed”. We were deeply moved by this film and we wanted to find out more about where it came from. Read on for an interview with the project’s creator and director, Brendon ‘Wolf-Shield’ Culliton’s.
Nicky: You live in Ontario, Canada. How did you first find out about the Lucidity Festival and what inspired you to attend it?
Brendon: Back in November of 2012 I made another movie about a festival called Three Days of Light in Asheville NC. Following the success of that movie I wanted to continue to explore the theme transformational festivals because they make an incredibly exciting backdrop to be able to tell a story. Not only are they a place to meet some amazing people and allow spontaneous events to occur, but they also allow me to implement themes I am personally interested in, such as the evolution of consciousness, unity, and in the case of the Lucidity Festival – the topic of dream exploration and perceptions of reality. Once I heard about the Lucidity Festival I was instantly drawn to the idea of attending. I knew it was going to be bigger and more vibrant festival than my first – and as such, I knew that there was potential for telling a very powerful story through- one that I intended to entertain, educate, and inspire as many people as possible.
Nicky: What is the premise of the film, and why did you choose to tell the story from a first person perspective?
Brendon: The basis of the movie is about my journey through the festival. I awaken under a tree and am greeted by a beautiful goddess. She gives me the gift of a pinecone and sets me off on my way to ask people about it as I explore. The film blends the lines of the dream state and the waking state with myself being unsure as to which and what this might be. The movie plays out through the people I meet along the way, and the process of being in the moment and following my intuition.
Telling the story from the first person perspective was the obvious choice for me because it has been a technique I have been working with in the journalism style of videos I have been making for years now. I feel that using the first person method allows me to walk a line between being fully in the moment and filming it at the same time.
On the first day of the festival I actually went through a process where I was pretty overwhelmed – some things just weren’t clicking in the natural ‘chaos’ of the festival environment. Eventually we filmed the first scene. After that I slowed down for a bit and had to reflect on what it was that I was going to do with my time here. With the help of some new friends who I had met, I was able to make the choice to let go of my original plot line/scenes idea. But fortunately, since we did still have the first scene filmed – I was still in a good shape to run forward with the core element of my original idea – the pinecone. With my camera in hand, and doing my best to remain aware of my surroundings while still making conscious choices along the way, the movie began to emerge.
Nicky: What is the technology you used to support that point of view?
Brendon: I filmed the majority of the movie on JVC cameras. In addition to that I also had a GoPro, for which I made a custom hat mount and used for some first person shots you see in the movie, such as the martial arts scenes. Naturally the purpose for that was to be able to bring the audience into the experience.
I am the person who is behind the camera, but part of my intention is to reflect the idea that this story isn’t mine alone – it’s our story. Working with the hat mount, plus a shoulder mount for the JVC cams, plus a mini steady cam gimbal, I am able to bring the observer into the story in a way that not a lot of other movies do. Whether people were or weren’t at the festival, they can watch this movie and be brought into it as much as they allow themselves to be.
What also makes this movie very effective is the soundtrack, provided by my good friend Billy Mayes III of Infinite Third (www.facebook.com/InfiniteThird). I really enjoyed working with music he had already created and see something new emerge. The whole process of editing was very synchronistic.
Much of the soundtrack for the movie is available for free as one of the albums Billy has shared. People are welcome to listen to it now, though my wish is for people to wait to hear it the first time within the movie for the full fresh effect it provides. http://music.infinitethird.com/album/moments-in-the-raw
Nicky: East Asian martial arts are a recurring theme in the film. How do they relate to you personally and to your festival experience?
Brendon: One of the things that made Lucidity Festival 2013 great was the variety offered through the different villages set up. You had places like The Healing Sanctuary, The Lovers Nest, and the one I was really excited about – The Warriors Den. Knowing ahead of time about the villages allowed me to anticipate how they would play a role within the story of the movie. As opposed to the movie just being a ‘documentary’, I intended for it to feel more like an adventure movie.
Early on in the movie you see me walk into The Warriors Den. Though I have never been taught professionally, martial arts have always been a passion and inspiration for me. Obviously I think of someone such as Bruce Lee as a role model and teacher. “Be water my friend.” is one of the most profound statements that I live by, and is reflected in the themes of the movie. The practice of martial arts is a way for us to become more in tune with our physical presence and awareness. Healthy body, mind, and spirit is something I live by. Martial arts relate heavily to themes of discipline – and I feel that discipline is a key element with all spiritual practices – ESPECIALLY dream exploration. Practicing discipline through martial arts allows discipline within dream exploration practice to come more naturally.
Of course promoting martial arts does not mean I support violence. The training game you see in the movie is known as Sadu (which was first introduced to myself and many by our good friend The Atlantis King). This is a simple game where each person is trying to gently make contact with the other person’s chin. It is a game of flow, awareness, reaction, anticipation, and mutual respect. A game such as this can become very meditative and is something anyone can try.
Nicky: This is not your first documentary. What other film projects have you been involved in?
Brendon: I have been creating consciousness-shifting media for close to 5 years now. Ever since I got into video production I have always had a ‘knack’ for it. Even at a young age it was amazing to notice the synchronicity of how projects would come together. I went to university/college for film. In 2009 I created Paradigm Shift – a project that is still evolving as we speak. It started with a club in my college, which has since evolved into my city, and then into a global network of communities. The genesis of this began with me making videos to present and document the shift in consciosuness as it was happening then. All of this can still be found on the website at www.ParadigmShiftCentral.com – something we encourage anyone to get involved with. We also do a weekly radio show that I host live on Saturdays at www.facebook.com/ParadigmShiftRadio. So within all this I have been creating a variety of videos with different styles. All of which can be check out on my youtube. Since 2010 I have created 4 full length movies. My first movie was not directly related to the Paradigm Shift project, but was still a huge part of my spiritual growth. It’s a very real film about a Canadian soldier who was killed in Afghanistan. The film has received numerous recognitions and was even played in the parliament building of Canada for our politicians to see. People can find out more and order it online at www.IfIShouldFall.com – it is a very spiritual movie in its own way.
Nicky: The “Journey to Lucidity” is now available online. Will you also be hosting screenings at specific events?
Brendon: One of the goals of this project is to make it available and seen by as many people as possible, which is why the movie is available to watch and share on Youtube FOR FREE. Not only does it promote and educate about the Lucidity Festival, but the movie carries also with it very potent underlying messages. What the audience receives from the movie is going to be unique to their relationship with it.
I am inviting people to contribute after watching the movie based on what a project like this means to them. Contributions help support my work as an artist as I continue to create more consciousness shifting media that is entertaining, educational, and inspirational. To contribute please visit the current Indiegogo campaign.
The story does not end when the credits roll. This film is designed to inspire people to take affirmative action in their life by stepping into their roles with courage and confidence. I invite everyone to be a part of this ongoing adventure and in particular join me on Sundays when I host Paradigm Shift Radio LIVE –an interactive community show to help assist in the evolution of consciousness. www.fb.com/ParadigmShiftRadio
There are many great things on our horizon, and I look forward to sharing and celebrating this adventure together.
Thank you to everyone. To Jonah, to Spencer, to every single person who was at the festival or wishes they were. I look forward to seeing many of you again next year in 2014 when we will continue the story of our Journey to Lucidity.
-Brendon ‘Wolf-Shield’ Culliton