This video is a short film I made to accompany my song, Quintessence. It was shot in Iceland, over the period of a few weeks this past June, with the help of my two daughters Karítas Árný Sturludóttir and Árveig Mía Sturludóttir who drove with me to several locations and allowed me to capture their natural, beautiful selves in our favorite places all within an hours drive from Reykjavík, where we live. My friend Jónatan Grétarsson, an Icelandic photographer had additionally taken some footage of Karítas, a portrait in motion.
Given that the song is about our connection with nature, and the feeling of stillness, presence and awareness wild places imbue our hearts with, it seemed only natural the visuals should invite those very feelings. I remember them most intensely from my childhood, when spending all hours outdoors in warm summer days was the most magical and fun thing there was. When we become adults, there is always so much to do, and so little time to do it, that we don’t allow ourselves this stillness, this silent communion with nature and with ourselves. Walking without a destination, sitting on a rock unaware of time passing. What’s more, we don’t even feel like we are missing out, for we are always rushing. So much that there is no time to even consider an alternative way of being. But something is always calling us, inviting us to retrieve what had been lost.
Shooting this video, I had spent more time outdoors than I have in a very long time. We followed the weather and often waited for the magical hour of twilight. We took advantage of the 24 hour day light and sometimes went to a location late in the evening when there was little foot traffic. Every such trip felt like an adventure, at a time of day most people were on the couch watching an episode before turning in. Which is exactly what I would have been doing myself had it not been for the filming. It made me wonder, why I had stopped doing this. Going outside spontaneously, just to watch a sunset, or to feel the rain on my face. Me, who has always been so aware of how much I need nature to feel balanced. It felt quite shocking to realize that between work and children, cooking, cleaning, and so forth, I had forgotten to make room for such moments in my life. I forgot to make room for myself. It is as though it was always on my mind, but a part of me thought: “Oh well it will still be there once I have the chance to go and experience it.“ As if it were not possible right then and there. As if I needed some excuse, some purpose beyond that of simply going outside and being in my own company. I think we are all a bit trapped in our routines, for that is how the world is designed. Perhaps it is time to break out of them a bit. To make room for spontaneity, and allow the unexpected to happen. For without mystery, our lives become dull.
So here is to playfulness and spontaneity. Let them not be exclusive to childhood but follow us throughout our lives always. Let us live each day as if it were our last, for one day, it will be.
Quintessence by Markéta Irglová, featuring Emiliana Torrini and Aukai,
Starring Karítas Árný Sturludóttir and Árveig Mía Sturludóttir
Produced by Sturla Mio Thorisson at Masterkey Studios
Filmed and edited by Markéta Irglová
Additional footage by Jónatan Grétarsson,
Color grading by Bjarki Guðjónsson at Trickshot
Made with the help of
Sturla Mio Thorisson,
Tina Dickow and Helgi Hrafn Jónsson,
Anna Kristín and Pétur Ben and Gylli the horse,
Linda Björk Eiríksdóttir and
Her beautiful custom knitted sweaters,
Mary Reynolds and
The elemental realm.
Please visit www.wearetheark.org