DAMBE by Alex Simpson

Last year a good friend of mine photographer Sebastian Barros asked me if I’d consider teaming up and self funding a project which he thought might have legs not only a strong stills concept, but a captivating and unique piece of moving image also.

Not one to shy away from an adventure we dove head first into the pre-production of what was to eventually become DAMBE, a film we’re both incredibly proud of and thrilled to finally be sharing with people.

The film follows Taye, the reigning Dambe boxing champion of his local community in Lagos, Nigeria. Often called ‘Fight Club - Nigerian style’, dambe fighters wrap their arms in rope with the aim of knocking down an opponent in one strike. It is fiercely competitive and largely undocumented.

With such great content in the can the footage has been shaped into two seperate films, a ‘short short’ 90 second explosion of action, and a slightly longer 8 minute short doc.

We’re trying our luck and have entered the films into a couple of festivals so things have to stay under wraps for now, but here are a few stills to whet the appetite.

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ghd Education Shoot | Behind the Scenes by Alex Simpson


A little snapshot into what was a crazy busy, but ultimately very productive 2 day shoot for haircare gurus ghd.

It was fantastic to be able to stretch some creative muscle and play with interesting light set ups for the backstage inspired creative, who would have thought a mirror and a tray could provide so much character to the shots!

Photos: @ashmartinphoto

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Plymouth College of Art Commercial by Alex Simpson


Last month I headed to the South West to direct 'The Thinker and The Maker', an exciting commercial project for Plymouth College of Art. PCA commissioned this film to entice prospective students to the college and needed a piece of moving image that would excite and inspire in a way that tied in with the art school's approach and practices. After nearly a year in the making and various delays it was all systems go and everything came together just in time for the 2 day shoot.

The collaboration between branding agency Lovers, local production company The Media Workshop and the college itself was a fantastic experience where I got to bring my creative fantasies to life. Rather than being handed a finalised concept, the brief came to me completely open and I had the rare chance to draft an idea from scratch. Seeing it brought to life all the way from initial scribbles in a notebook to calling cut on the last take was very very satisfying!...and now onto post-production...

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Phase Eight SS18 Bridal Campaign by Alex Simpson


I really enjoyed working on this project for Phase Eight's new SS18 bridal range. The team were looking for creative campaign imagery that would stand out amongst a plethora of videos online and sit well with their look book which was shot on location in Portugal last summer.

So with our shoot date set for late November and an East London studio booked we had a challenge on our hands!

To mirror the stills we opted for a romantic vibe, bring the outdoors in. Shaping light to cast long late afternoon sun shadows and flittering reflections across our models face. The result is a soft atmospheric set of films that works perfectly alongside the stills, website and social offerings.

 

Ghost Dream x Refinery29 by Alex Simpson


Last month I teamed up with online fashion and entertainment hub Refinery29 to generate some stylish advertorial video content for Ghost fragrances.

The brief was to integrate Ghost Dream into a 20 something's going out routine before hitting the town and capture three different looks currently trending retail rails.