Live Action Fezz – The WL14 Interview

WL14 Interview – Live Action Fezz
Purveyor of: Otherworldly visuals
File next to: 3D without the glasses
Visualizing: Night two of WL14 Friday, February 14th @ Adelaide Hall (250 Adelaide St. W.)

General Chaos Visuals has always been our go-to when it comes to creating an ethereal, dreamy space for Wavelength showgoers to enjoy not only what they hear but also what they see. This year he’ll be working in conjunction with several visual artists including Live Action Fezz, a Guelph ex-pat currently living in Toronto who has made a quick name for himself by doing visuals for bands such as Braids and Doldrums, massive DJ parties and the odd music video. A musician in his own right, he’ll be making us see beyond what we hear Friday, February 14th at Adelaide Hall. Brad Casey spoke to Fezz about his views on uniting sound with vision.

How do you feel about live mixing visuals vs. pre-planned, timed visuals?

Live visuals are always awesome and exciting, although I’ve found through doing this work that it’s also important to limit yourself. It’s very easy to do too much and to over-complicate. It’s actually quite hard to be simple. It’s important to pick the right times in the show to flash all the lights and make things crazy. The audience notices the changes more when they happen at key moments in the songs.

Do you cater the visuals to each performer? Or do you have an artistic vision that happens to blend with the bands you work with?

Sometimes I’m catering to more of the mood of the party itself, and then adapting to each performer. I often adapt in the moment, as my software really lets me create new looks and work on the fly. From what I’ve seen, performers, especially DJs or solo electronic acts, will really respond positively to the energy that a well-designed show can create. I always try to keep things simple as a supporting element to the artist, so as not to overpower them.

You’re working with some pretty serious materials, including 3D projections, streams of LEDs and large prisms. Where do you fit within that spectrum of DIY vs technologically-driven visuals?

I started out working with small to non-existent budgets, which forced me to think more creatively with what I had access to. Working with Matt and Thomas from Mansion, specifically for last year’s Foundry festival, we had to be resourceful with our installations and stick to a limited budget.  

Paradise Animals – Tea Guide – OFFICIAL VIDEO from Fezz Stenton on Vimeo.

On top of doing live video work, you’ve recently made a music video for Paradise Animals. Is the
music video a medium you’re planning on working in more often?

Most definitely. I’m currently working on creating visuals for my own “Video EP” under my real name Ferenc Stenton. I’m planning on creating a unique video for every track using projection mapping on miniature, built sets. I’ve been involved in a few video shoots where I’ve used my projection techniques to generate in camera effects. I’m also creating simple visuals for songs uploaded online for some friends right now.

Are there any artists or venues you’d like to work with, specifically? Why?

I’ve worked with Doldrums several times. They’re always a fun act to work with, as the music has so many changes and strange timings. My favourite show from 2013 was Andy Stott. We had the projector behind him pointing out and filled the stage with smoke, which gave him this god-like glowing effect. My favourite venues are the unconventional venues. Working with Mansion, we’ve had parties at Holy Trinity Church, an old power station (Metropolis Factory), and a big alleyway at Adelaide and John. Having the ability to transform these spaces for one night only makes it that much more exciting. Adelaide Hall also has a special spot in my heart. I’ve done quite a few shows there now and I can confidently say that this is one of the best venues the city has right now.

What do you plan on doing with the Wavelength show?

You’ll just have to come and see!

Live Action Fezz will be creating visuals for night two of Wavelength FOURTEEN, Friday February 14 @ Adelaide Hall (250 Adelaide St. W.).