Scotica Summer 2024 Update

June 3, 2024

The snow has melted from the tops of the mountains and, as I write, I’m looking out over Highland landscapes as they’re turning more and more green. It’s pretty nice to be welcoming some warmth after a long winter, although I’m less enamoured with the return of the midgies.

Meet Scotica’s New Creative Director: Rachel Sarah

Hi. That’s actually me! I thought it was apt that I write this blog post, as it’s me we’re welcoming to the Scotica team. I’m Rach, and I’m so excited to be joining Scotica as Creative Director.

I am a multi-skilled shooting producer-director, thriving on narrative-lead documentary work, and commercial campaigns centred on stories with real meaning. My work focuses on our connections with nature, landscapes and wildlife. I seek exploration and adventure, but I also look for purpose and creating things that drive others to act positively, whether for the environment, for others, or for themselves.

I have always been an advocate for collaboration in this industry. When I was going through the process of moving up to the Scottish Highlands last year, I was also deciding on how to continue my own business and practice as a filmmaker, as a production company. Scotica and I crossed paths and now, many months later, we’re doing this together.

Breaking Trails with GORE-TEX

Taking us back to slightly colder temperatures, we’re reminiscing on our last shoot in Rjukan, where we were shooting alongside TCO for GORE-TEX’s brand new film series, Breaking Trails. Breaking Trails follows pairs of inspiring individuals as they forge paths and form connections in the outdoors. Each episode sees two remarkable life journeys intersect on a physical trail, where our intrepid duo learn from each other’s experiences and find common ground despite their differences. We shot the first episode of the series, which focused in on athletes Jesse Dufton and Tamara Lunger, as they reflect on overcoming adversity and personal tragedy while ice climbing in Rjukan, Norway.

A search for Scottish mountain hares

We’ve wrapped production and are now into the edit for our short film that focuses on Scottish wildlife photographer, Karen Miller, and her relationship to the wildlife she captures. This project has been pure joy, taking us hiking with our long lenses in the snowy hills of Glenshee, to early morning starts in the centre of Glasgow, and then back into the quiet, natural spaces of Highland woodland spaces. For us, this project encapsulates some of the most important values we hold – highlighting our connections to nature, to wildlife, and to landscape, right here in our backyard.

A brand new journey into warmer days, and beyond

As we’re heading into sunnier days, we are finding ourselves in familiar territory. We’ve been wandering, cameras in hand, within new woodlands. It’s brilliant that we are continuing to work alongside environmental organisation Forest Carbon on a new slate of projects for 2024, capturing the team on the ground, the beauty of our outdoor spaces, and the work that still needs to be done.

We’ve also treading new paths, currently deeply in pre-production for several new documentary projects, writing new governance for Scotica, and we’re still in the midst of creating an AI policy, which has been a real eye-opener, as we’ve watched the industry change in real time as we’ve been writing. The website has seen many changes, and we’ve updated our values to better reflect the new paths we’ll be venturing into as a business.

Have a browse of the website and the socials for these refreshed, visuals, values and more. For now, I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes from our new values:

”We shed our ego; creating a positive space is one of our most fundamental values at Scotica. Creative collaboration is at our core, and everybody is valued and heard.”

Here’s to the future. Through the years I’ve gone from solo adventure filmmaker, juggling everything myself, to putting together bigger and crews for more complex shoots, and now this merge with Scotica.

Together we are pretty excited to continue creating more beautiful work that centres important and impactful stories in the outdoors.

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