Clip of the Week with Jane Ensor’s Psychedelic Ocean
Here’s something different for CLIP OF THE WEEK. Instead amazing and progressive girls of the sea shredding in the waves we’ve decided to go a bit alternate. Presenting the talented motion editor and artist Jane Ensor. Jane is one of those girls that you meet and you instantly have a calm, soft and balanced aurora come over you. She takes everything in. Jane has grown up surfing competitively and as a free surfer now representing O’Neill. Her surfing is fluid and clean just like her approach to life. More often than not these days, you’ll find her carving it up on her mullet board, making the most of the Summertime slosh but that doesn’t take away from her surfing, she still dominates the line up and holds her own in any surf.
Psychedelic ocean is an artwork. Take a moment to remove yourself from what you are thinking and consumed with, open your mind and thoughts to something new. Jane takes us diving under the waves and swimming through the ocean with a new set of eyes and a new perspective. Enjoy.
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What is Psychedelic Ocean is and where does it come from? As a kid I was always making videos of trips, events or as gifts to my parents, because seeing things in motion was always a step better than a still photo, your hearing sense is brought into a memory and it makes it that much more special.
Making videos took more time than taking a snap, but the time was worth it and it taught me to appreciate whatever it was I was editing. Psychedelic Ocean was a fun little personal project which turned into an obsession. Now it is my business name as a motion editor.
One day I was playing round with this video of this particular wave I had shot up at Palmy, which had heaps of turbulence, it was texturally intriguing. I wanted highlight every beautiful texture that wave was made up of. To intensify the motion and shifting shapes the wave was creating I added music, I picked a song with heaps of bass and went for it.
I then had the wave dance along to the beats and sounds by adding different layers and colours, slowing it down, speeding it up and rewinding it. Which made the wave have a psychedelic feel to it, it was alive, the whole energy of this wave became intimidatingly magical.
This is the overall aesthetic that surrounds this project, it all fits together into the context of this one idea, that the ocean has a mind of it’s own, it is a body.
From then on I was obsessed with the idea that I could somehow highlight my refined perception and sensibility of the ocean and my natural surroundings by using these techniques, making the general tone of it quite abstract.
The whole thing is theoretical, I’m not thinking about this, this is just happening, the final product is the result of that.
All I wanted to do was give back and thank the ocean for handing me so many incredible visions and experiences. My way of doing this was to create short videos of what was in my mind at different times. I can now look back at these in appreciation, knowing I have seen such power and beauty from such an intimate perspective. It is extremely gratifying.
What kind of mind space do you have to step back into to view it? Extremely contrary to my shooting process, when creating these videos, I lose myself in my computer glow. It’s a process where I can not be too self aware… To see how time can dissolve when your so intensely connected to your subconscious has been a pretty powerful and satisfying experience and I am forever grateful for this.
Because I am immersing my faith into this project I am constantly inspired from above and below the surface, so when I am shooting it is always very Eclectic. I constantly find myself in very fortunate scenarios, where things happen by chance rather than intention. and I feel like it is the ocean just showing off, saying “hey look what I can do, I’m magical”.
I have started to incorporate more natural landscapes and surroundings like rock platforms, headlands, flowers and trees. The videos have become more variable the more I create. In the last month I’ve made an edit about The big island of Hawaii and now I am editing one about my partner’s journey hiking, surfing and spearfishing around New Zealand.
Are there any messages you want people to get from the clips or is it purely a self interpretative journey? The idea is to make art that is powerful enough to change the way people think. I have a lot of nostalgia for the experiences the ocean has given me, so I have created these videos to convey how my brain perceives nature and bring beauty to things that are sometimes overlooked.
I think it’s important to stay connected to the present and understand the beauty of simplicity. A lot of people are stuck in society’s paradigm and I think people need to see things for how they really are, even if it’s just occasionally.
Stop. Look around. Take it in. Remember it. Every chance you get.
The ocean gives me guidance and clarity of everyday life. The ocean has so many positive chemicals pulsating through it. It’s giving freedom away for free. You just have to respect it and give it thanks in return.
What does the editing process involve for you and what kinds of techniques you use to create the effects? When I hear a song I instantly match it with a piece of footage stored on my hard drive, and then map out what technique I’d like to use for every beat and sound.
I love intense music with a lot of bass and buzz about it. It has to resonate deep within for it to be worthwhile.
I feel like the ocean’s energy and vibrations are like the melody and the beat. On a calm day you have chilled out slow music and on a moody stormy day, you have an up tempo bass style song, because there is a whole lot more energy, displacement and shifting in the water, with more patterned layers of ocean surface and swell.
I use different colours to emphasise distinct feelings I want the image to convey. Obviously black and white and darker colours makes the whole tone of it dark and volatile. The colours are changing constantly with the ever changing and unpredictable ocean and natural environments.
In reverse, people look sinister and unnatural, where as nature in backwards motion is not as unsettling. It’s a beautiful contrast, which symbolises going back in time. I think time is a really interesting concept, if I was to make an image speed up it causes a feeling of urgency or excitement, you can’t keep it once it’s gone, but when images are slowed down it is a more calm and transparent experience for the viewer.
I also use layering processes using After Effects or Final Cut. A lot of this is trial and error with blending techniques, opacity, colour balance and exposure changes. I use up to 5 layers, depending on the message I’m trying to convey through the chosen images.