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Master filmmaker highlights the importance of mental health awareness

Simeon Quarrie

 

Rotolight are proud to be able to share the story of championship freediver, Helena Bourdillon, produced by Master of Light, Simeon Quarrie, and his team at VIVIDA. 1 in 6 people worldwide have experienced a common mental health issue in the past week alone; affecting people from all walks of life.

Helena first developed chronic depression at the age of 11, but didn’t recognise it until the age of 26, when she was preparing to commit suicide. It was on a trip to Thailand 5 years ago that Helena discovered freediving and found that the calming silence when she was submerged was the liberation she needed to recover. Five years on, Helena is the deepest female freediver in the UK; representing Great Britain at the biennial Individual Depth World Championships in 2015 and 2017.

Collaborating with Master of Light, Simeon Quarrie and his team to bring her story to life, Helena wanted both to educate and to inspire others to reach out. “The film may have me in it, but it is the story of thousands and thousands of people who have had or are currently suffering from a mental illness and, by talking about it, I hope I can dispel some of the stigma and encourage others to reach out and seek help,” Helena says.

Simeon used the Rotolight Anova PRO 2 and NEO 2 on set to light both the interview with Helena and the darkened studio shoot. Setting the Anova PRO 2’s CineSFXTM to flicker on the side of Helena’s face, Simeon was able to create striking shadows that capture the darkness and fear that she experienced in that time.

“It’s an honour that Simeon and his team at VIVIDA would let Rotolight be a part of this eye-opening and remarkable campaign that really drives home the importance of rallying against the stigma that often accompanies mental illness,” says Rod Aaron Gammons, managing director of Rotolight.

Rotolight encourages anyone who is struggling to reach out – do not suffer in silence. In the UK, you can call the Samaritans for free at 116 123, or email them on jo@samaritans.org