5:31 | United States | 2023
A story about one boy, living on one block, in one crazy world.
They call me Esso, but my real name Josh. I’m a director + photographer living in Philadelphia. Inspired by street culture and the city, I bring that energy to every project I work on. I’m interested in telling emotional, subversive stories that spark empathy and compassion.
I'm primarily a filmmaker, directing commercials, music videos and narrative projects. In addition, I spend my time helping musicians as a creative director + photographer, helping them tell their story through visuals.
When possible, I’m using film as my medium of choice. I like to embrace the characteristics of the medium, which has imperfections and a chemical element that’s hard to control. The Japanese call this Wabi-Sabi and I try to lean into these beautiful imperfections in all my work. There’s an excitement to be found in the beautiful accidents that are unexpected.
I wrote this film for myself, but it’s really a love letter to my family. It’s a time capsule of our life, our house, our block, and our world. When you have kids, the world is small in terms of geography, but huge when you see it through their eyes, through their experiences. As the film slowly developed slowly during Covid, I found the final resolution to zoom out and show how we need each other, especially the artists in our lives and in our communities. They give us much joy and hope, much language for humanity that’s hard to communicate otherwise (at least for me). In the end, I wanted it to be a love letter not only to my family, but also to the role that artists play.
I slowly pieced it together as time allowed and it was cool to see it develop from a small voice over I wrote, to having a more complex world inhabited with the community we live in.
Simon Wann, Eli Wann, Neighbor Bob, Finnegan Grimble, Cam Cornelius