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F-stop staff pro Darcy Turenne is an award winning director from Vancouver, Canada. She works on a broad range of projects including commercial shoots, travel films, music videos, and her own art. She is also known internationally from her previous career as a professional mountain biker.
In her twenties, she found her passion for storytelling and visual arts and since then has written and directed for clients ranging from Coca Cola to Patagonia to Jive Records.
Her filming has taken her across the globe: Mongolia, India, Bolivia, Indonesia, and Qatar just to name a few places.
Her latest trip was to Iceland and she was happy to share her experience with us.
You were a professional freeride mountain biker. What made you move from in front of the camera to behind the camera?
Like a lot of mountain bikers, I sustained a pretty bad injury that suddenly made me realize that being a pro athlete wasn’t something that I wanted to carry on doing forever. A few days after injuring myself I enrolled to a master’s degree program in International Communications, and through that I learned a bit about filmmaking because I chose to make a film for my thesis. As soon as I made my first film I was hooked and I retired from mountain biking as soon as I graduated.
What motivates you to continue filming and directing?
Passion! I love it so much! I love watching good film (and bad film too, occasionally). Escaping into another world by watching a film is such a luxury, and being able to create and share those worlds with people is something that I can’t get enough of. There are so many genres of filmmaking, and I feel like the opportunity and creativity is endless. That’s a rare feeling.
Who and what inspires you?
That list is pretty endless as well ;) I’m inspired daily by so many different things. I like to gather inspiration for my films through daily observation of human interaction, art, music – I can never plan how or when inspiration will hit. That’s why I try and stay open to what’s going on around me and stay curious.
Walks/skis/swims/hikes in nature are the vessel for inspiration. I observe a lot of things in everyday life, but usually I am able to put those pieces of inspiration into a comprehensible idea when I’m outside, moving through nature. I would have to say that at least 95% of my best ideas have come to me when I’ve been alone on a hike. Haha.
Like most filmmakers I have a long list of directors and films that inspire me. Andrea Arnold, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Darren Aronofsky, Spike Jonze, the Cohen Brothers – I’m pretty sure my list isn’t too different than anyone else’s ;) But then I scroll through Vimeo or go to film festivals and watch so many wonderful short independent films and I’m blown away by the level of filmmaking today. It’s all inspiring.
Can you describe your time in Iceland?
I went to Iceland because I was selected to be part of their “Talent Lab” at the Reykjavik International Film Festival. Darren Aronofsky was one of our mentors, but mostly we just got to mentor each other. It was an amazing learning experience.
After the film festival, I went on a solo mission with my camera around the southern part of the island. Every day I would hike to a natural hot spring somewhere in the mountains. It was so rainy and windy that the hot springs were usually either warm or cold, but never hot. It was a fun adventure.
How was the traveling with the Guru UL camera pack?
It was the best! So light and easy to carry with my Sony A7Sii that I didn’t even notice I was carrying anything! Also, it got soaking wet every day and dried off really quickly which my camera gear and I appreciated a lot :)
What tips and tricks would you share for using an Ultra Light pack while traveling?
It holds a lot more than it looks, so feel free to bring that telephoto lens! (I forgot to bring mine in Iceland and I regret it)