Martha: A Picture Story

82 Minute Documentary


Director: Selina Miles
Production Co: Projector Films
Producer: Daniel Joyce
Co-Producer: Bethany Bruce
DOP: Selina Miles, Marcus Autelli
Additional Cinematography: Michael Latham
Edit: Simon Njoo
Post Production: ZIGZAG Post, with colour grade by Angela Cerasi

Brisbane based colourist Angela Cerasi colour graded this feature documentary in collaboration with ZIGZAG Post in Sydney, who managed the post-production on the feature.  Angela also colour graded all the social marketing videos to celebrate the film’s release.  This incredible documentary was directed by Selina Miles, who specialises in telling human stories, usually about art.  The feature was produced by Daniel Joyce for Projector Films.

In 1970s New York, photographer Martha Cooper captured some of the first vivid images of graffiti appearing on the city’s subway carriages. Decades later, Martha realises she’s become an unexpected icon of the street art world – her visionary photography having inspired the spread of graffiti art around the globe. Now, at age 75, Martha must navigate her way through this vastly changed culture.

The documentary contains a blend of interviews as well as archival and contemporary footage showing Cooper accompanying urban graffiti crews.

This review from Hollywood Reporter called the film, at the time of its release in April 2019, “Eighty of the happiest minutes documentary-lovers are likely to spend in a theater this year”.  You can’t get much better than that!

The documentary also shows Martha’s earlier years, including how at 20 her goal was to be a National Geographic photographer, how she travelled to Thailand for the Peace Corps then made a solo motorcycle trip from  Southeast Asia to England, developing a portfolio that earned her a coveted internship at the magazine.  Living in Japan, she became fascinated with the local tattoo scene and later published a book on the topic.

The feature documentary premiered at Tribeca Film Festival 2019 and was the winner of the Sydney Film Festival 2019 Audience Award.

To see another documentary Angela Cerasi colour graded in collaboration with ZIGZAG Post, check out this Stan original documentary series, The Dawn of the Dolphins.