Compiling scrapbooks has been an integral part of my filmmaking practice from the beginning. These books are made from scraps of photographs, photocopied and found images, newspaper clippings, written fragments, quotes, letters, lists and my own notations.
The process of keeping scrapbooks is a vein of activity that runs continuously from day to day, from project to project. I use them as a way to collect my thoughts and record whatever catches my interest or sparks an idea. Maybe because my ideas stay on paper for such along time that I have found it necessary to keep the research process as rich and tactile as possible. There is physicality to keeping scrapbooks that throws up new ideas, associations and narratives.
Often I have looked over my books and wondered whether these collections of fragments, scribbles, starting points and dead ends are actually my main body of work and the films are by-products of that process. This brings me back to one of the first things I learnt at art school – The process is the product.