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Blog | Cairn Production


Happenings and Musings at Cairn Production

An Anthem for Scotland?

Did you know that Scotland does not have an official anthem?

This 10 minute film asks the question do we now have an anthem as chosen by the people?

Commissioned by Scotland’s national orchestra, the RSNO, it tells the story of the song Flower of Scotland and its rise to anthem status.

A bit of folk, sport, history, politics and luck its a story worth telling.

Web Trends 2014

 Some interesting thoughts gathered by iStockphoto

Infographic: Top 10 design trends, November 2013

eLearning – everywhere!

eLearning – across all the platforms

Discover how we used our production and storytelling skills to deliver cross-platform eLearning for the Scottish Ambulance Service.

Smartphones, Tablets and eLearning were made for each other.   Now that you can pick up a tablet for under £120, this new delivery channel is going mainstream.




Nothing happy about ‘Happy Birthday’

Unbelievably the song Happy Birthday is not in the public domain.


We filmakers would be in trouble if we used it and Warner Music Group would not be happy if they found out.

They reportedly collect “upward of $2 million a year from film and TV fees off the song,” and their copyright is not scheduled to expire until 2030.

The good news is that there are some alternatives.  Listen to them HERE

They are not all for family celebrations!


Filming in Brazil

Just back from a 10 day development trip to Brazil.  Working with Conflux on a large scale outdoor street theatre work as part of the 2014 Commonwealth Games arts programme.

2013-10-21 14.07.35Look out for it – PERCH, A Festival of Flying and Falling

2013-10-27 15.26.31

Will be projecting onto buildings in Glasgow.  Just wish we could I could find one like this!

Tractors and Trophies – Prime Time Doc for BBC Scotland

This 60 minute documentary was co-directed and produced for sister company – Rolling Pictures. Its our third project for BBC Scotland and broadcast on Thursday the 7th of November 2013.

Filmed over the summer and edited over the autumn its had a great reaction which was satisfying as it was very hard work!

It featured a large amount of film archive from 1949 – 1986.

What it’s about –

Young farmers will compete at just about anything. From the coveted categories of stock judging and tug of war, to the dafter contests of pillow fighting and best decorated toilet – you name it, there’s a trophy for it.

Tractors and Trophies offers a unique insight into Scotland’s Young Farmers Clubs, past and present, and reveals what’s behind the social phenomenon that is Scotland’s Young Farmers Club – a strange mixture of competition, dating agency, and rural university.


A Night Shoot

On a cold dark night . . .

We shot this film profiling the lighting of  The Auld Kirk at Alloway.

This national monument is the setting for Roberts Burns’s poem Tam o’Shanter

When chapman billies leave the street,

And drouthy neibors, neibors, meet;

Using a DSLR camera for beauty shots and a conventional HD camera for interview we get an insight into lighting designer Nich Smith’s response to this unique setting.


Filming In China

Taking A Scottish Hogmanay To China

Over Hogmanay 2012/2013 the opportunity to document The Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s first tour of China came up.

Filmed over 10 days as the orchestra gave six performances in five cities across two provinces, the Cantonese region Guangdong and the northern province of Hebei.  Cities visited – Shenzhen, Beijing, Guangzhou, Tianjin and Macau.

Sounding Good

In this project the ambition was to capture the back stage and front of house action.

Given the nature of the subject, it was also important to capture the very best sounding recordings possible.  With some very helpful venue technicians, this was achieved.

Keeping It Short

Rather than deliver a longer form project of perhaps up to 25 minutes.  It was decided to publish the films in shorter chunks, themed around subject areas.  To accommodate the short attention spans of web viewing everything was presented as a Pinterest page with video served from YouTube.

This was an amazing project to be involved with.  I will certainly not forget the reception we received in China.



SURGE 2012

 The Pallet of Surge 2012 DVDs has arrived!


All the artists from this years Surge Festival of Street Arts are keen to get thier hands on them.



Yak Yak Yak

Online: Talking Heads Are Boring!

We expect more when we hit PLAY.

The research proves we demand short content rich videos to keep our attention online –

Read more here from the  Guardian Technology Column.