INTERVIEW WITH DIRECTOR JOOST VAN DEIJZEN
Hey Joost, how is this whole quarantine working out
“At first it was a bit of a shock of course, just like any other creative the question: "What now?" popped up in my head. But somehow the quarantine and the behavior of people in lockdown was very interesting to me, I started researching. From scientific researches to podcasts and videos. I came across this one video. The video was about a priest, he had this really interesting point of view: "Embrace the quarantine and think of the ways we can use the free time we have now.” it all made sense to me: There’s no distraction, you don’t have to work from nine till five, you don’t have to go to the gym and you don’t even need to, or can see your friends every day. All the projects you had in mind, but never had the time for, now is the time to finish them! Everything became very real and pure to me. Eventually, this mindset was the main inspiration for the TNO Commercial.”
That’s a positive point of view you have! How did you become a director?
“It all started with my media studies in Haarlem, it was a very broad study. My first creative interest started in the music industry, at first I wanted to be an artist manager. During this period my father and I went to New York, I thought it would be nice to take a camera with me. So I did, I bought this easy camera for 100 euros and just started filming random stuff. When I came home, I edited all the short videos together and combined the video with a Wu-Tang record underneath it. Then I realized I can combine the two worlds: the music and the film industry.
Eventually, after my media study, I decided to take two more minors, both were focused on film. I learned a lot about production, writing video concepts, and focusing on making a story come to life. I made some ugly movies at first, but I had to start somewhere. It was a phase of constant trial and error, but that gave me the motivation to continue with creating."
How would you describe your style as a director?
"With every video, I try to make the storyline not too obvious, so the viewer can create their interpretation of the video. It’s like giving all the tools, but in the end, I still want the people to use their imagination. Next to that, esthetic is very important to me. Especially the rawness of a video, but I also pay attention to small details like people’s behavior and clothes. That's something I like to highlight in my videos."
Where do you get your inspiration from?
"It sounds a bit cliché, but I get inspiration from everything: friends, people, music, architecture, museums, and traveling. For example, the identity and ideologies of The New Originals fit me perfectly, so for me, it wasn’t that hard to find inspiring people that represent the brand. Amsterdam itself is a huge inspiration to me, we have a lot of high leveled creatives out here. Combining those creatives in one commercial gave me a lot of energy."
And of course, sometimes you have to work with brands that don’t fit your identity at first. But I think that’s also a form of inspiration. Because you have to dive into a brand and search for things you have a connection with, that’s inspiring too. Then you’ll learn new things and your view will expand."
What are your dreams as a director, what do you still want to achieve?
"A lot of things! For example, making a video for Patta is one of my biggest goals. That’s because I know them for a long time, their progression is huge! Their brand represents Amsterdam, freedom, and creativity. This mindset fits me perfectly. My other biggest dream would be a worldwide commercial for a fashion brand from a higher segment like Nike, Adidas, or Gucci. These brands are trendsetters and have a big influence on the fashion industry. It would be dope if I can dive into the brand for 3-4 months and create a new trend within the fashion- and film industry by making a video in my style. Besides that, I would love to make a video for a brand that would like to share a big social message."
Do you have some advice for the next creative generation?
"Try to get as much inspiration out of everything, back then I used to make the mistake to only look at commercials, movies, and videos from other directors. Because I wanted to work in the film industry, now I realize you can get inspiration out of everything. And then I’m not talking about your computer screen, eventually, those screens make us numb. Think bigger, you can get inspiration from going out, museums, traveling, meeting new people, listening to different kinds of music, art, architecture and so much more.
And: don’t give up! Again, it’s maybe a cliché but it’s true. In the past, I worked on a lot of projects that just paid the bills. But they didn’t make me happy or suited my vision really. Think big, but not too big in a short amount of time. And with that I mean: Make a true selection of your goals, divide your goals into different steps. When you’re young you don’t always know what you want to do immediately, but that’s all good. Go traveling, do an internship, and if you don’t like it. Just try something else, don’t give up, eventually, you’ll find your thing.
With this being said, I would love to thank The New Originals for the opportunity they gave me, it was super inspiring to work with all these Amsterdam based Creatives. All the people who worked on the movie were driven to move a step forward in the creative industry, we did this together!”