Student film on BBC The Social

8 April 2020
Film maker Elliot with Davey who features in the film

3rd Year Press and Editorial Photography student Elliott Caunce has his film featured BBC Scotland’s The Social. We caught up with Elliott to find out about his film.

What is the film about?
The film is about a very Scottish man who's been self-isolating for the last 12 years in a tent in The Highlands. The film explores his decision to “go into the wild” after being diagnosed with Cardiomyopathy.

How did you meet Davey?
For my final major project I decided to explore the theme of off-grid living in Scotland. I met Davey completely by chance while on the way to meet another hermit who is known to live in one of Scotland’s remotest regions. I bumped into Davey and we got talking - I couldn’t believe my luck.

Davey’s decision to live in the wild is not for everyone. He lives several hours hike from the closest train station and there are no roads anywhere close by. To get supplies he has to walk for three hours to Scotland’s remotest train station and then take the fifty minute ride to the closest town. He fills his ruck sack with three weeks worth of supplies and hauls them through the hills back to his tent. I found his way of living totally fascinating and even more so now with all the self-isolating going on.

What inspired the film?
I am mostly interested in telling human interest stories but I’m also a huge fan of the great outdoors. I don’t consider myself a landscape photographer so I wanted to find a story that incorporated people in this environment. I have now met three hermits and continue to look for more as this project evolves.

How did your film get on The Social?
In Scotland, The Social is a popular platform for new and upcoming talent in the Scottish film industry. I applied to be a contributor back in November and completely forgot about it until I got an email back saying that they were really interested in my work. I then had to interview before being commissioned to do my first piece. I believe The Social platform is due to be rolled out over the rest of the UK in the future and I encourage other student filmmakers to take part.

What’s next for you?
I am currently editing part 2 of the series. Fortunately I shot the footage before the current lock-down so I just have to get to the edit finished. Right now I’m focussed on finishing my degree but afterwards, I’d like to continue making documentaries and working as a Multimedia Journalist. 

See more from Elliot on Instagram: @followmytracks