The gardener's eye

The Gardener's Eye

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Small Gardens Are Like Short Films

Quotes from  ‘The Oscar-Nominated Short Films 2014: Live Action’

“12 Years a Slave” Director Steve McQueen
"The structure of short film is all about narrative."

"You have to say a lot in a short period of time. You think, 'How do I do that? How do I have the maximum impact within a time restriction?' But it could be actually much more effective than a long film. All this thing about short and long--its all about whether it is good or not. Often a short film can be better than a long film. It has nothing to do with length. It has to do with intelligence."

Luciano Giubbilei Chelsea Flower Show Garden

 Matthew Modine Actor and Shorts Director
"As artists you have to find someplace where you can go and find quiet and hear yourself; to hear your voice, because it is small."

Peter Wooster's Garden, Roxbury, CT

2013 Shorts Winner Shawn Christensen
"You have one idea, one notion, and you can take that idea all the way. If it is a strong idea, you can just explore it and you don't have to worry about being complicated. You can do that one simple idea."

Sakonnet Gardens, Little Compton, RI

Peter Webber Director "Girl with a Pearl Earring"
"There can be a purity about a short film. You can take a very simple pure idea...and make it purely cinematic."

"There is something much purer about working with a smaller budget or working on a smaller canvas."

"Short film is a real skill. It is like writing a Haiku."

"You need to have a really good story to tell and you need to tell it really well."

Rosemary Verey's Potager Garden, Cirencester, England

Jim Field Smith Director "She's Out of My League"
"The constraints of making a short sometimes end up being the strongest points."

Michael Trapp's Garden, West Corwall, CT


  1. This is a good thought, illustrated well! Thanks!

  2. I've been struggling with how to make the most of my very small city lot. Thanks for this perspective.

    1. One good idea done well seems to be the theme. Good luck with your small urban plot.

  3. Hi Michael
    "The size of a garden has nothing to do with its benefits. It is the size of the garden owner's brain, heart and willingness that determines whether the garden will be interesting or not."
    Gertrude Jekyll

    Have a nice day.

    1. Thanks, Kjeld. It was remembering that Jekyll quote that struck a cord with me when I saw this documentary.

  4. Loved the way you did this. Great gardens, great quotes! Fun to read and see.



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