Mark and Angela Walley are a husband-and-wife filmmaking duo based in San Antonio, Texas. In 2010 they established their independent production company – Walley Films, dedicated to the advocacy of the arts in their community. Every film that we have watched made by Mark and Angela Walley has a story with a fresh reveal and a picture perfect portrait of an artist hard at work. In the interview below we reveal how the Walley’s compliment each-other as partners in fantastic film making.
What is a common thread or technique that a viewer should look for in all Walley videos? We are inspired by the people we work with, and we strive to make each documentary film unique by matching the mood of the cinematography and music to that of the artist’s work. We hope a common thread in our films are each artist’s ability to tell their story, whether that’s through the interviews we conduct and/or visually capturing their process.
How do you two compliment each other as a film making team? We like to think that Mark really watches and Angela really listens. Film making is equal parts audio and visual, it’s important to make sure we are illustrating what the artist is saying in a unique way. It’s easy to literally show what is being said, but you have to go beyond that and we’re able to do so by keeping a balance between seeing and hearing.
Out of all the documentaries on artists you have done, which artist’s work do you like the best? That’s kind of like choosing our favorite child. Angela: If I had to pick, it would be performance artist Jimmy Kuehnle. I just fell in love with Jimmy’s work and know we could produce a longer length film following his many projects. Mark: An artist we approached to make a film about was Chris Sauter. We had met Chris while both speaking at an event and we immediately identified with the ambition and creative approach he has towards the work he is making. We hope our films are as engaging and thoughtful as we found his work to be.
How do your tastes distinctively differ? It’s funny how much we think alike. Since we’ve essentially grown up together over the past nine years, we’ve really developed similar tastes in movies, art and music. It’s rare that either one of us gravitates towards something the other wouldn’t like or at least appreciate.
Who would be your dream artist to create a documentary about? We would love to make a documentary following writer, artist and filmmaker Miranda July. We are inspired by her ability to live in different creative worlds and to cross boundaries we often find ourselves within.
How do you describe digital media? Extremely convenient and terribly addictive.
What do you look for in content? In interview content we are listening for statements that reveal some truth behind why the artist makes the work. In visual content we are interested in being voyeurs in the process. Both kinds of content should bring the audience a greater appreciate for the artist’s work.
What is your favorite camera to use to create a digital documentary with? Why? For the past year we’ve been creating films with a Canon T2i DSLR. It’s several pounds lighter than our previous camera, and you really can’t beat the quality and convenience in that price range.
What about living in San Antonio, Texas inspires you? San Antonio is such a wonderful place to be. The art scene is as welcoming as it is diverse. People often ask when we’re going to move to nearby Austin, but we prefer to live in San Antonio, not only because our family is here, but because there is a real need for our work.
What is the film you two take the most pride in accomplishing? We are proud of all our films, but we are always most excited about sharing our latest film. We just released a documentary following the creation of a beautiful mountainous sculpture by Japanese artist Yasuaki Onishi at Rice University Art Gallery.
Between the Walley’s flawless camerawork and the beautiful and intimate imagery of work of the artists they document, Mark and Angela Walley have an incredible collection of films. Spend a couple hours or spend a few minutes each day and discover something in the Walley Film library of film art.