In August I was approached by Gavin Mehrtens to shoot unit stills on a short he was producing called Every Quiet Moment. He described it as a story about the impact of dementia on individuals and families, a topic close to their hearts and I was really interested in getting involved because it’s quite different to the sorts of films I’ve worked on before.

The story revolves around three generations of a family taking the grandfather out to scatter his late wife’s ashes in the forest where he asked her to marry him decades before, and cuts between the present day and his youth in flashback. Sadly, the grandfather is suffering from dementia and has trouble even remembering his wife, which is particularly hard for his son to deal with.

london unit stills photographer every quiet moment alzheimers - Unit Stills: Every Quiet Moment (2013)

I was only able to be on set for one of the two shoot days, out at Black Park near Pinewood. It’s a fantastic location for this story, with the trees becoming a character in their own right as the grandfather wanders off the path by himself and gets lost amongst them. Later on in the day I switched over to the second unit who were filming the flashback footage on an actual Super 8 camera – very cool!

Interesting factoid: at some point out in the fields while filming the flashbacks something must have bitten me on my hand between my pinky and ring finger. I didn’t notice at the time, but on the way home my hand started to itch and the next morning it had swollen pretty big, like when you blow up a rubber glove! I couldn’t clench my fist, or hold a camera, and it stayed that way for a couple of days before slowly ‘deflating’ back to a less alarming size. I’ve still got no idea what bit me.