If there are consequences, they have yet to be found. This is the story of a girl divided by her two weaknesses, which leads her to live two love stories simultaneously. One we see her enjoy, one we see her suffer. The film, titled “NOT YOUR GIRLS”, is a fusion of fashion and documentary. It reflects the gaze of this confused teenager, at the point of losing her conscience and living her passion with freedom. Art director, Alexan Sarikamichian, tells us more.
Can you split your heart in two? Can you be in love with two people at the same time?
TELL US A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT YOUR ROLE AS A DIRECTOR IN “NOT YOUR GIRLS”; HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA?
NOT YOUR GIRLS is the continuation of my previous work of which there are many similar themes. For example, young characters in love and the nostalgic atmosphere involved in human relationships. This selection was different though because there was a love story between two women. In my opinion, they have a special and particular beauty. We tried to work on the strength they own and highlight their best characteristics. We tried to tell the story by taking into consideration each detail, not just a pretty view. Collectively we wanted to be able to transmit the story.
WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO TELL THE STORY?
Rigoberta del Tesouro contacted me some time ago because she liked my videos. She worked with costume so we thought we could do something together, unfortunately the project didn’t work out. We kept in touch and I asked her to be in front of the camera for our next project. That’s when I found out she had great charisma and that she could be the protagonist of a love story between two women. I knew she was going to put a big effort in the project and be very courageous. I wanted to make an emotional video but I also needed to find the right chemistry between the two girls.
After that it became really easy for me to contact the other protagonist. I called Agustina Leal, someone I really feel confident with, and on my second line I told her she had to play a very courageous scene where she had to act like a “Lolita” and expose herself on the middle of a bridge with a highway full of cars at the back. Something similar to Aerosmith’s “Crazy” video. When she agreed to do that, I knew the rest was done.
I had already worked with Anahí Roy, and I asked her to participate but we could never find the right time to get together. I knew she had a special energy and attitude. Anahí has a special behavior that was really present during the moment of shooting. She has such an intensity that makes as all awake all the time and such a natural beauty that I didn’t want her to wear any makeup; I wanted her freckles to be shown. In the end we decided to add something distinctive to the character and she only painted her eyebrows.
WHAT WERE THE DIFFICULTIES YOU HAD TO FACE AT THE MOMENT OF SHOOTING?
The shooting was done at a time when we were all really busy, so to coordinate a schedule was really hard. Anahí was on the last year of her course to be a fashion designer. Agustina was working night shifts at a bar and Sebastián, the photographer, was working on a variety of independent projects. This is the first time I’ve worked on a video with almost no technical crew too. There were only the actors, Sebastián and myself.
IN “NOT YOUR GIRLS” THERE’S A MAGNIFICENT WORK ON PHOTGRAPHY. DO YOU GET INVOLVED IN A LOT OF THESE ASPECTS?
Sebastián Ferrari understands my style and we complement each other. He is a thinking person and very down to earth, but I am extremely passionate and anxious. We create the perfect balance. He takes care of the technical stuff that I don’t know about, and I use my intuition and my ability of observation. If there is something I like, then we keep it going. The locations are well known places in the city of Buenos Aires and we always worked with natural light. We didn’t have the time nor budget to get a whole illumination plan. That is something I’ve been doing in my projects for a very long time, I produce and film with the elements that I have and I don’t give it up for being ambitious. It is the only way I have to do things right now.
HOW WAS “NOT YOU GIRLS” FINANCED, IF AT ALL?
As it happens most of my works are independently created. I’m the producer and I finance the costs it takes. However, as it was a short project with a lot of exposition, I needed the actresses to give it all. I feel that they worked with such love and dedication that, in a way, they owned the video.
WHAT AESTHETIC REFERENCES DID YOU USE TO INSPIRE YOURSELF?
My first inspiration was to work on the girls, as I chose them I had to know what they could give. We created the characters according to the feelings they gave on me, their movements, physical appearance, looks and even the clothes they wore. We captured their essence and that was the starting part of the video. I find them very special. They are the kind of girls that show themselves on social media, through pictures, art, paints. I considered them artists so I checked out their posts and pictures to capture something useful for the character.
We all shared our inspirations and that helped us get into the atmosphere. There are two movies that I really liked as well, “Mommy” by Xavier Dolan and “la vida de adele” by Abdellatif Kechiche for the chaos and the romance.
HOW DID YOU SELECT THE MUSIC?
It is a song called “Imanes” which means “Magnets” in English, by a band called Piscis Machine. They are from Argentina. I liked them as soon as I heard them so I wrote to Agustín Della Croce, told him that I had an independent project and I wanted to create a short film and add a soundtrack. I asked them if they’d let me use the song to complement my work and I showed him some frames of the film. Fortunately, he said yes and showed a lot of interest. I’m very happy because we both could share our art.
WHAT IS THE MAIN INTENTION OF THE VIDEO?
My videos are mostly done for the internet. I think this platform reaches a lot of audiences. My previous works were shown on many magazines and web sites from all over the world. I think this is the most courageous one and will get a special interest because of the theme, the aesthetic and the love we put into it.
Choosing to tell a love story between two women was a decision to open people’s minds. We wanted to show real women and vulnerable teenagers in their lives, and see them learn by what they chose in life and by giving love.
I believe the images on the video show different states of mind and you can see that the characters are going through different situations, from having fun, to making love or even feeling lonely when they are with the wrong person. I think that in every situation the main goal is to create a feeling or a sensation to make the spectator feel affected in a way that allows them to solve the puzzle from the outside.
art director and producer ALEXAN KEVORK SARIKAMICHIAN / ALEXAN FILMS
director of photography and color grade SEBASTIAN FERRARI
editor NICOLAS PONIEMAN
stylist RIGOBERTA DEL TESOURO
actresses RIGOBERTA DEL TESOURO, AGUSTINA LEAL AND ANAHI ROY
with thanks to FER CALVO, FRABULOSA, BANANA FISH, ROOMIE, LYON, POLYESTER
soundtrack “IMANES” BY PISCIS MACHINE