While a streaming digital file is hardly the preferable medium for watching any of Stan Brakhage’s movies, the mere presence of a great piece such as The Wold Shadow (1972) on the internet is nevertheless a welcome viewing option available to anyone who may not have the opportunity otherwise.

Inspired by a vision of an anthropomorphic shadow during a stroll through the woods, The Wold Shadow — which took a full day to create — is a luminously stuttering film that finds the filmmaker fashioning the craft of landscape cinema as an homage to what he calls “…the god of the forest”. Its production consisted of Brakhage placing a plane of glass between his camera and the trees in the distance, shooting a single frame of celluloid, painting on the glass, shooting another single frame…and so on, repeating the alternating process. The result captures a striking vision of nature with a mind of both cinema and painting, merging two visual arts whose modes of representation are distinct from each other yet meld wonderfully here as a testament to the ‘new ways of seeing’ that Brakhage consistently sought with his work.