Experiencing Wonder With Gina Martynova


Young creative Gina Martynova has accomplished a lot so far – her experience spans illustration, graphic design and fashion design, and her travels have taken her to the likes of New York, London, Moscow, Bangkok and India… Born in Moscow to a Russian father and a Russian-Chinese mother, Gina spent her childhood in Thailand as a result of her father’s UN interpreter gig. A prominent aspect of Gina’s artwork is her alter ego the “Starry Eyed Gypsy” who she describes as an “alien botanist scientist gypsy that travels to various different planets” and is currently “experimenting and observing human nature.” There are certainly some insightful encapsulations about living in her aptly named docu-short by the Brass Brothers titled “Wonder.”

We chatted with Jesse Brass, one of the filmmakers behind this wonderful vignette and he shared some details on the thought processes behind the film, the project, the lead-up to this point and more. Take it away, Jesse!

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On getting started with filmmaking…

My brother and I shot a short about my mother, who is an artist, for a Vimeo weekend competition several years ago. We won the competition and loved making the film so much we went on to reach out to other artists in our community to make similar profiles. The series began to develop a tone and unique voice. The focus was less on the art and more on the lives and motivations of the artist.

On starting the Making Art series…

At the same time I had started a creative blog which I began to comb through mounds of content to populate. Constantly coming across new art I began to really enjoy the process of discovering and sharing art. One day I came across some work by an artist from Toronto which I thought was exceptional. I had the idea to reach out to her and see if she would be interested in being featured in our series. She was very interested and I decided to not only feature her, but to make a series specific to artists from Toronto. I successfully ran a Kickstarter campaign and then was off to film Making Art Toronto. By the time we had finished our edit on the six films we shot in Toronto we had received four Vimeo Staff Picks and been picked up by creative and art blogs from around the world. Since then, I have traveled to Philadelphia and New York to shoot similar series.

On Making Art with Gina Martynova…

Gina’s film is the third of seven films in the Making Art New York series. I was drawn to Gina’s work because it was something I hadn’t seen before. It was full of Wonder. Her matching of fashion, beauty, culture, and the bizarre and unexpected intrigued me. I looked her up and found out that she was both in fashion and art and that she was both Russian and Chinese. I thought that there was likely a good story there.

On crafting the tale…

[Going into filming], I did not know what the story would be about – and never do. That is a big part of our technique. When we film we try our best to follow the artist’s lead, to have a real conversation. So our story is not contrived or forced, but genuine to the artist.

On what’s coming up next in his story…

Making Art is my obsession. I love every aspect of it, from the people I am connecting with to the stories we are telling to the impact the stories are having. I don’t know what’s next but I’m excited to find out.

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The rest of the Making Art series can be found on Vimeo or the Brass Brothers Films website. Mosey on over to Gina’s Nuvango portfolio to gape at her art in starry-eyed wonder.

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