Ever since Dale Kamp introduced me to Philip Bloom’s work, it has been a fascinating experience for both of us, while watching his films, to attempt to put a finger on what exactly it is about his films that enthralls cyberspace audiences and captivates the hearts of thousands. How did he manage to get over 18,000 followers on Twitter and have several short films on Vimeo with plays in the hundreds of thousands? (Okay, I realize that if you film yourself being kicked in your lower regions and post it on YouTube it will instantly get over a million views, but this is Vimeo we are talking about. Quality viewers who demand quality content.) Is it the bokeh? The slow motion? The fast motion? The excellent choice in music? The people sitting there staring into the camera? Or is it something completely separate from the films themselves, like his gentlemanly British accent, perhaps?
Philip Bloom has become a phenomenon, albeit on a much smaller scale, similar to Steve Jobs. He’s the only guy whose short films have their own RDF. DSLR filmmakers all across the globe hail his word as law. At NAB, one of the largest video and audio tech conferences in the world, swarms of video neophytes blindly pass by that one guy who made Reverie (which I will always consider the seminal DSLR film, by the way) in hopes of being able to get a glimpse of Philip Bloom. I really hope he is on Canon’s payroll, because he’s sure sold a lot of cameras for them. Or perhaps, like Jobs, he opted to receive only a $1 per year salary.
Well today, thanks to Cristina Valdivieso and Jon Connor of Canon Filmmakers, his keynote speech is streaming on the web. Even though he wasn’t wearing a black mock turtleneck, thousands will hang on every word he says. I particularly enjoyed his final words of wisdom: it’s not the gear, it’s what you shoot, so go out there and shoot some great stuff!
Here it is, in all its glory: