Watching the result of those few days of filming, hearing myself in a video for the first time speaking about my work, really hit me the guts with how lucky I feel to do what I do. I’ve worked really hard to get to this point, and, tentatively, I feel a bit more convinced that it’s all going to work out and keep rolling.
Beyond all that business/existential angst though, is a certain clarity I have now about my work. I remember when I finally got brazing. I can still feel the sensation of that particular braze, it hit me suddenly. I remember feeling like it wasn’t all happening at once, that time was sliding forwards normally, rather than it being on fast forward with heat and brass and spilling everywhere and my hands being somehow both stupidly leaden and ineptly rushed like it had always felt before. It was a very specific moment – where I could marshall the heat calmly, tease the brass just so and it was happening without too much frontal lobe action required.
And now, with some more years on from that point, I feel like I’m getting a handle on the depth of feeling I have about processes and approaches, about how I want things to look, to work, to feel. I’ve got hard and fast opinions about this stuff now. I’ve got a look that I want. I’ve got firm functional requirements my bikes all need to fulfil: the cables have to run like this, the dynamo has to be there, that kind of thing. I’ve got a process that is beginning to emerge, an aesthetic coming into focus. Something that feels clear when I see it, that says: Clandestine.
Watching this film Dom made about me, all that honed into view for me. It pulled into focus and I felt embarrassed almost that I said some of this stuff. But my heart’s always been on my sleeve, my shonky little tattoos on my arms and my gobby mouth spouting opinions.
I’m extremely honoured that Jamie and Dom wanted to make a film about me, and I’m blown away by the hard work they put in, and the incredible result.