For the last three years (including that ridiculous year of 2020) Cameron Fraser and his motley crew of nerds have been putting in work.
What work? Filming Interchange, that’s what. What’s that, you ask? It’s a skate film… Der. With his trusty VX, Cameron’s style of filming is raw and honest and celebrates skateboarding for what it is. No bells and whistles, no gazillion megapixel crispy slow-motion nonsense, just real skaters staking real clips. Add a little 16mm film into the mix and you have the perfect nostalgic cocktail with a side of Sydney’s finest skaters. As if being a talented filmer wasn’t enough, Cam also features on the board in Interchange. What can’t this bloke do? Thanks to that prick called Covid, any chance of a physical film premiere was sadly kicked to the curb. But fear not: Interchange is out this Thursday on YouTube. So, crack a beer or twelve and enjoy the premiere at home. Before you watch it, though, get the inside scoop from Cameron below.
Firstly, who are you and how old are you?
My name is Cameron and I am 22 years old.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Redfern, Sydney.
When did you first pick up a video camera?
When I was 12, I got a cheap little handy cam with a skint $20 fisheye attached to it. Best birthday present ever.
How long have you been working on Interchange?
It’s been over three years, which is pretty crazy to think about.
Who features in the film?
The film features full parts from Riwaz Kazi, George Nunn, Fred Tebbutt, Aidan Ouma, and myself. Fellow nerds Dean Palmer and Sean Thomas Ryan also share a little section.
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Is it all filmed in Sydney?
Most of it is, but there’s also some stuff from a few trips we did to Canberra and Melbourne, as well as from when I went to Europe back in 2018, which was when I met George.
By the looks of your gram, you’ve been filming with these boys for a long time now. What’s it like seeing your mates progress over the years?
It’s amazing to see. It’s funny how different the video looks now compared to when it was supposed to be released early last year; it’s almost unrecognisable. We’ve replaced so much footage because of how much everyone’s progressed.
What keeps you filming on a VX versus entering the crispy digital world of skate filming?
A lot of it comes down to luck. I’ve had my current VX for over six years and have only had a few problems with it, whereas most people seem to just churn through them because they keep breaking. All my favourite videos and the ones I grew up on are all filmed on a VX, so it also comes from a desire to emulate those videos. Also, I’ve tried my hand at HD and I make it look like absolute shit. I’m much more comfortable in my little bubble of obsolete camera technology.
Who has influenced your filming over the years?
Way too many people. Josh Stewart, Dan Wolfe, Jacob Harris, Chris Mulhern, RB Umali, Greg Hunt and Dan Kircher to name a few. I’m not that into Strobeck’s HD stuff, but his VX filming was incredible, and I am still in awe of how good he made skating look. I think the first filmer that made me consciously think about how skating could be presented was French Fred, he’s what really cemented my fixation for filming. In terms of using 16mm film—which there is a good chunk of in Interchange—Dan Magee would probably be the biggest influence in that regard. Blueprint’s Lost and Found was the reason I committed to buying a Bolex and am now blowing all my money on film.
What is the most memorable moment or trick you’ve ever filmed?
This is a tough one. For the sake of the video, I’m gonna say the line where Aidan ollies the light rail tracks inside the Grand Concourse at Central Station. I came up with the idea but it took us a while to actually commit to going and trying it. This was pre-pandemic as well, so it was always crowded. We went one night around midnight with Sam Harris (who helped film a lot of the video) to act as a spotter for us. I would be on the phone to Sam while we were waiting to go at the other end of the concourse, asking him how long we had until the next train would pull in and if the platform was clear. We knew we would only get one try at it, but thankfully Aidan pulled it off and managed to get back onto the platform only seconds before cops came around the corner. Luckily they weren’t there for us but that definitely got me wired up. Probably the most stressed I’ve been filming a clip ever, so it’s pretty memorable for that reason alone.
Best skate video of all time?
Habitat, Mosaic. Words cannot describe how good that video is and how much joy it brings me. Interchange is just my attempt at a cheap imitation of Mosaic, and that will be the case for every other video I make in the future, and I have no shame in saying that.
Catch the live YouTube premiere for Interchange this Thursday, 16th of September at 7 pm. Follow @cameron__fraser on Insta for more info.
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