MAKING CADENCE: Elka Kerkhof and Danny Loyden during the creation of short animation film Cadence to be screened at the Grafton Regional Gallery on Friday night as part of Grafton Festival of the Bike.
MAKING CADENCE: Elka Kerkhof and Danny Loyden during the creation of short animation film Cadence to be screened at the Grafton Regional Gallery on Friday night as part of Grafton Festival of the Bike. Cass Samms

Crew steps up Cadence in film's sprint finish

DIRECTOR Danny Loyden and his crew worked around the clock on the finishing touches of Cadence.

"Four days straight," Mr Loyden said. "We just finished the animation film after a really late night yesterday morning."

Coming in at just four minutes 40 seconds, the Cast Net Productions film, which reflects Grafton's rich history on two wheels, was no ride in the park.

Mr Loyden started the project in September with mentoring from experienced screenwriter Elka Kerkhof. He said the pair often played tag team to ensure it was ready to be screened tomorrow night as part of Grafton's Festival of the Bike.

"I woke up at 4am one morning and she was going to bed," he said. "I would see her final process of editing the sound, I'd do something else then when she got up again we'd arm wrestle ideas.

"Right up to a couple of days ago we were still doing voice-overs with Meg Lucas and my partner Sammy Lovejoy to tie in some of the images and the story."

Artist Cass Samms provided the digital drawings for the film, put into motion by Mr Loyden and Ms Kerkhof.

"Her beautiful drawings on Wacom pages look like they've been drawn on paper but they're all done digitally," Mr Loyden said.

"We were almost happy with the whole thing, then there was just one little thing at the end, so we called Cass in on Sunday to draw a change.

"There's been a lot of discussion, and the story has changed multiple times from the original script.

"When we started to draw some of the ideas we started to realise very quickly things needed to change.

"It's been massive and we've come from nowhere really, as far as we had a concept in our mind, but really no idea how we were going to do it."

FILM CREW: Script writer Sammy Lovejoy, actor Meg Lucas, composer Craig Freeman and director Danny Loyden prepare to embark on animation film project Cadence at Grafton Regional Gallery for the Bike Town exhibition in 2019.
FILM CREW: Script writer Sammy Lovejoy, actor Meg Lucas, composer Craig Freeman and director Danny Loyden prepare to embark on animation film project Cadence at Grafton Regional Gallery for the Bike Town exhibition in 2019. Caitlan Charles

Craig Freeman created original music and helped with sound design. Mr Loyden said the project had been a real team effort, and the final product evolved as a team.

"It's been really fun being the director and involved in all the process," he said. "Certainly we've found a good little team that can work together.

"It's looking really good and we're excited about showing everyone.

"It's very original, very local, but also very global."

Mr Loyden plans to send Cadence to film festivals around the world and hopes to fund his next project off its success. First though, he gets to run it past the local critics as part of Grafton's Festival of the Bike.

"All that's left to do now is to screen it to our friends and the Clarence, and get some feedback from there.

"Sound mastering would be the next thing, and then sending it all around the world, and hopefully get some laurels and funding to do our next one, which we have ideas for."

The Cadence preview will feature talks from the artists involved in the project and starts at 6pm at Grafton Regional Gallery, where multi-media exhibition Bike Town is also featured.

The Bike Town and Cadence projects have been made possible by a Heritage Near Me grant from the NSW Government.

Wheelmen in the Clarence - a documentary film by Mr Loyden about the region's cycling history - was screened during last year's festival.

GRAFTON FESTIVAL OF THE BIKE

Grafton Festival of the Bike consists of a series of events leading into the 59th annual 228km Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic which leaves Memorial Park from 7.15am Saturday.

The festival launch is at 6pm tonight at the Clocktower Hotel followed at the Saraton Theatre by a screening of documentary The Bikes of Wrath - a funny and insightful documentary about five Australians cycling 2600km from Oklahoma to California retracing the steps of the Joad family in The Grapes of Wrath, and exploring the novel's core themes of migration, inequality and the perceived land of opportunity.

At 8am on Friday, competitors from the Oliver's Real Food Racing team will join Grafton Public School students and members of the community at the intersection of Breimba and Bacon streets in Dovedale for the weekly Bike Bus.

A new instalment on race day this year will be the Midday Rotary Family Fun Ride, providing an opportunity for community members to put their freshly inspired cycle legs into gear, leaving from Memorial Park immediately after the dust settles from the start of the race proper at 8am.

Then on Sunday at 9am there will be a leisurely guided cycle tour along Grafton's new Cycling Heritage Trail.

While the second annual Grafton Festival of the Bike is set to be bigger and better than the first, organisers have warned it's only a sneak peek at what's to come when the Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic celebrates 60 years in 2020.

"We're' getting ready for next year's 60th anniversary," Grafton Cycle Club's David Hislop said.

"It's all about getting more people into the town, and the more people on bikes the safer it is for everyone."

FULL PROGRAM OF EVENTS

Tonight

6pm: Gala Opening at Clocktower Hotel

7.15pm: The Bikes of Wrath at Saraton Theatre

Thursday

6pm: Premiere of short animation film Cadence at Grafton Regional Gallery

Friday

8am: Grafton Public School Bike Bus at Breimba/Bacon St

2-6pm: Retro Bikes Australia Show at Oliver/Mary St (Fri-Sat-Sun)

4-6pm: G2I Sign On and Street Party at Toast Espresso

Saturday

7.15am: 59th Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic starts at Memorial Park

8am: Family Fun Ride at Memorial Park

Sunday

9am: History Rides Again - Cycling Heritage Trail starts at Memorial Park

March 28-May 19: Bike Town multi-media exhibition at Grafton Regional Gallery  


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