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© 2019 by MARISTI LLC. Maya Aristimuño

"The Solution To Chaos" 

Unfinished Film, Personal Series: in French

Published on Adolescent Content​

 

translation: A girl once told me that art is the solution to chaos... So I started asking myself if what she said was true. Until the day I finally believed it. And I believed in myself.

 

(above)  My older cousin Sophia came to visit when I was lost in this fading dream of becoming a film director. Sophia has always been somebody I look up to: throughout the struggles in her life, she always maintained a mentality that art is the solution to chaos. She even has a tattoo that says so in French.

 

So, in a way, what happened during her visit now feels like it was inevitable: I was taking photos of her and suddenly decided to put French “subtitles” over the images to make them seem like screengrabs from an old foreign movie. I titled her “unfinished film” The Solution to Chaos, though I had no way of predicting that others would follow. 

 

This unfinished film is the first of many, all featuring their own characters and stories. Whether the subtitles are made up to fit the vibe of the photos or written as a reflection of the actress, each unfinished film represents a story in the picture show of life.

"Lost" 

Unfinished Film, Personal Series: in Tagalog

Published on Adolescent Content​ 

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For my second unfinished film, I decided to feature Lani Parilla. She’s a young filmmaker/photographer in NYC. When I discovered her, I was immediately stunned by her makeup skills. I wanted to create a vibe showcasing somebody’s talent, so while continuing the journalistic documentary-style film format, I interviewed Lani about some recent emotions in her life. She explained that there’s a clear line between what she wants to do with her life at this point, at age 19, and what people have been telling her to do. Her mother’s native language is Tagalog, so the subtitles were translated accordingly. 

 

The first film featured a person very close to me, and I soon discovered how unchallenging that was. I decided to make the second unfinished film more of a challenge by picking somebody I’ve never met. For this shoot, I worked completely backwards, and I absolutely love the result. 

 

First, I was walking through Greenwich Village during the golden hour, noticing the architecture and lighting. I knew I wanted to do a film showcasing different lighting styles. Next, I started hunting for cool people to photograph. Lani stood out to me in particular because of her short-cropped dyed hair, unique makeup looks, and dope art (she organized Art in the Park x Instagram). After she agreed to be photographed by me for the film, I called up my go-to stylist Destinee, who is the founder of House of Diablos. I interviewed Lani as she reapplied her makeup, and I learned about how she's been struggling with finding something to passionately pursue. I had all my locations in mind, so Destinee styled quickly, and I shot without a script. The next day, looking through the photos, I took my notes from the interview and wrote a short story to fit the four photos. The second unfinished film now brings up the points of the safety of what’s known, and the fear of the unknown.