It should be a progression of moods and feelings. - Stanley Kubrick
Compilation of shots from Blok, Ika, Eva and a music-video for The Quaint. Gradually the separate films will become available for viewing online.
Combined director’s cut of several commercials for international sportswear-brand AGU. This video is the result of 8 days of shooting in Italy and Austria with a total of 10 models. Will be available online soon.
Touching story of a girl who gets a long distance call from her dad... Started out as a cinematography and sound design exercise, but turned into an ambitious project. This project is a great case study of how I like working: patiently working with a small team and a creative DIY-approach to achieve cinematic production value. The film will be available online soon.
For my Master of Arts final project I developed and tested an alternative methodology for narrative filmmaking where the story grows from the visuals instead of vice versa. I created miniature fictive environments which inspired actors to play out a spontaneous narrative. These improvisations were documented, and served later as the basis of a green-screen shoot. Using visual effects, the footage was finally combined with the original fictive world. This resulted in the short film ‘Blok’, in which a man is looking for the source of a heavenly voice in an uncanny world...
Director’s cut of an internal commercial for an international telecom brand. Produced by L-A-D-A (Caviar Amsterdam), camera by Carline Hansen, post by The Compound, voice-over by Jeremiah Fleming, music in collaboration with Boudewijn Boon.
With my studio being located in the governmental district of the Netherlands, I was asked by the Supreme Court - my former neighbours - to make a film marking their move from a historic palace to a modern building by KAAN architects. The film was the centrepiece of the Royal opening ceremony. The original soundtrack is written by Maarten Feteris - the president of the court.
A commercial for funeral director Bas Poelstra. Music by Mattie Poels.
I often use my music-skills in projects, but when making free work I create music through improvisation. Starting with classical piano-lessons as a kid, then getting into piano-improvisation to extend my creativity into music. Later expanding my studio with electronic (analog) and acoustic instruments to experiment and develop a warm hypnotizing sound, influenced by The Cinematic Orchestra, Ennio Morricone, Vangelis, Keith Jarrett, Radiohead, Sigur Rós, Portico Quartet, etc.
Several years of atmospheric photography.
is indistinguishable from magic. - Arthur C. Clarke
Within my employment by tinker imagineers, I was responsible for one major experiential show-zone of Chocolate Nation, a ‘Belgian chocolate experience’ in downtown Antwerp. We created a huge fictional machine to visualize the manufacturing process of chocolate; from bagged bean all the way to dripping melted chocolate. The creative process started with rough sketches of steampunk principles to visualize production steps. Resulting in a detailed animated 3D-model and a full 4 minute show simulation in Virtual Reality (VR). From there on the construction was a 1:1 conversion of my 3D-model to reality; an amazing process to behold. Employing a multitude of showtechniques such as light, 24-channel audio, smoke, scent, CGI projections and complex kinetics, we were able to deliver a very rich 4-minute experience to the visitor. Construction, showcontrol and av-hardware by Flink, sound design by Walvisnest. Video of the full visitor journey. © tinker imagineers
Within my employment at tinker imagineers, I was part of the core team behind the BBC Earth Experience. This immersive experience, with bespoke narration from David Attenborough, features breath-taking footage from Seven Worlds, One Planet, projected on multiple multi-angle screens using the very latest digital screen technology. My initial creative vision was that the monumental projection walls should be slanted towards visitors to create comfortable viewing angles. This approach resulted in a large sculptural landscape with exciting sightlines and an adventurous visitor experience. When further exploring the space, the visitor discovers smaller immersive zones dedicated to life in water and micro-life. This was an epic dream project to participate in - collaborating with the world's best creatives and technicians. Now open in Earl's Court, London since 30 March 2023. Watch the trailer or visit the website to book your tickets. © tinker imagineers
Within my employment by tinker imagineers, I was one of the core creatives behind museum Tirpitz in Denmark (architecture by BIG Architects). I was the experience designer of an epic 4D projection-mapping show in which the museum room darkens, and we take the audience on a 7-minute trip through 200.000 years of life around Denmark's western coast. My role was designing this experience, from paper-prototyping to storyboard to opening, and included the direction of actors, composers, technicians and visual-effects-artists. In 2020 the museum already welcomed its 750.000th visitor! Watch a short interview with me here. © tinker imagineers
Within my employment by tinker imagineers, I was one of the core creatives behind museum Tirpitz in Denmark. I was the exhibition/experience designer of the most amazing object in their collection; a huge canon bunker from WOII that could had shot its 600 kg grenades into warships 50 kilometres away! We emphasize the feeling of being inside a war-machine with careful lighting and interactive sound-design. Using interactive projections we show ghostly appearances of the machine that was not yet finished when the war ended, and tell all supporting stories through an audioguide. © tinker imagineers
Within my employment by tinker imagineers, I was the lead spatial designer on a 500 m² experiential space, located inside the T2 training campus. We concepted a 3-hour interactive live-show, focused on getting kids (age 10 - 18) excited about STEM (Science Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). We designed an interactive creative workshop space; a kind of science center 3.0 meets scifi cleanroom meets minecraft. Central in the space an abstracted metropolis emerges and the surrounding pixelated landscape houses five thematic workstations. The game-play is focussed on improving the fictional city's quality by employing modern technological solutions. While problem-solving, the audience learns about creating solar panels, designing a smart grid and programming a kinetic floor amongst others, using a combination of tactile and digital exhibits. After finishing our design process, the project was tendered internationally. Subsequently, we collaborated with the talented teams of the Yipp (interaction design), Bruns (construction), and Ata Tech (hardware and lighting). Video of construction. Video of the visitor experience. © tinker imagineers
In a few years, an entirely new Natural History Museum will open its doors in Copenhagen. Tinker Imagineers won the international tender to design almost 4.900 m2 of exhibitions, that cover the entire history of our planet, from its formation to the present day. I was part of the winning competition team and became member of the core creative team as one of the museum's lead exhibition designers. The new museum will open it's doors in the coming years. © tinker imagineers
Within my employment by tinker imagineers, I was lead (experience) designer of the renewed Airborne Experience, which is an 800m² immersive exhibition that was originally designed by my colleagues in 2009. The renewal encompassed some new scenographic areas, more cinematic lighting and better articulated human figures. But most noticable a completely new AV-approach with an ambitious 60-channel sound design and more immersive use of projected media. After experiencing a rough trip aboard a glider plane, the visitors disembark into the panoramic Dutch landing meadows. Soon they experience how the initial optimism turns into heavy fighting as they hit into resistance when trying to take the Arnhem bridge. The visitors behold the horrors of the final resistance that took place in the area around the museum itself. Finally they join the soldiers when fleeing back over the Rhine river... Construction by Kloosterboer Decor, AV hardware/showcontrol and lighting design by Rapenburg Plaza, sound design by Walvisnest, animation market garden by Lieke Milder. © tinker imagineers
Close to my place of birth, a very ambitious creative project was initiated; the immersive art maze Doloris Meta Maze. Berlin based art collective Karmanoia were the creative lead on this 400m² permanent art installation, in which I got involved after an open call for artists. I ended up creating one of the 40 rooms; a subtle experience in which the guests witness a flock of fireflies living inside a peaceful forest. It was very satisfying to design, build, program and compose music for my permanent site-specific artwork. The visual aspect is generated live; even when spending hours inside my room you will not see the same ‘firefly dance’ twice. The Meta Maze is a truly unique art-experience - I strongly recommend visiting. Thanks to Stroom Den Haag for financial support.
For electronic band Yukon Club I developed live generative visuals by creative coding inspired by their music. I created my own VJ software from the ground up, which also contains an interface for creating a semi-automatic synch lightshow, controlled over DMX. On stage I am the 4th band-member; playing my system live to generate both the visuals and the lighting on the spot, resulting in a holistic spontaneous AV-spectacle. Video of our live show on 3FM national radio.
Nachtgloed was an innovative site-specific projection installation for ‘Into the Great Wide Open’, a small (7.000 visitors) but very popular Dutch festival. Using animated projections we effectively turned a forest into a huge 3D-display and breathed the forest to life. Combining the illuminated trees with calming soundscapes, we immersed the audience into surreal atmospheres. Collaboration with Gregor van Egdom, who was responsible for the projection-system and logistics.
Fedde van Erk, Sander van Hooijdonk and I designed a float for world’s largest and UNESCO-protected flower parade in Zundert. Using theatrical devices like sound and the illusion of light we recreated the childhood memory of having a monster below your bed. A team of over 100 volunteers of district Klein Zundert constructed the design in a towering size of 9 metres tall and dressed the float with thousands of dahlia-flowers.
I was invited by The Artbutchers to create a site-specific installation for De Aanschouw, a series of weekly mini-exhibitions since 2001 (!) in Rotterdam. I am always experimenting to find surprising ways to combine my disciplines. The process of creating ‘Perpetuum 100’, was an action-reaction between video and motors, resulting in this ‘kinetic video sculpture’.
My studio-workshop is a laboratory without rules. A space where I can experiment, follow my curiosity and inspiration, and express myself in a wide variety of mediums.
I am regularly supporting installation artist Mickey Yang in realizing complex immersive installations. Many of her projects are time-based - involving multi-channel video, multi-channel audio and carefully synchronized kinetic elements. This video shows the project ‘Upaya’ and it's making-of video, and this video shows ‘Closed Eyes’.
Museum Catharijneconvent, our state museum of religious art, hosted a 6-month exhibition on how Pieter Bruegel's art shaped the modern archetype witch. Part of the exhibition-design by Platvorm, was a room in which visitors could join a witch on a nightly broomstick flight above the city of Utrecht. I took the project from there to create a themepark-worthy experience; creating a stereoscopic film, composing a soundtrack and engineering electronics to add synchronized 4D wind-effects and showlighting.
A collaboration with Theatre of Wrong Decisions - a collective that responds to sensitive issues in today’s world through short videos based on sculptures by Ingrid Rollema, underlined by still-relevant quotes by Shakespeare. In Groningen we took the opportunity to make a large video-installation inside the Tschumi-pavilion - a unique pavilion for public display of video-art. Projection technology provided by BeamSystems.
The permanent exhibition ‘Papiria’ in the children’s books museum is a vivid, atmospheric experience. Six thematic caves, like the cave of love, adventure, and silliness, contain artefacts and RFID-controlled games. Employed by design-studio Platvorm I participated in the materialisation of the design. Next to my work as junior spatial designer, I evolved to be 3d-2d workflow specialist, which involved writing a proprietary Vectorworks script in order to accurately design the 2 kilometres ‘ribbon’ of prints that went onto the sawa-landscape. The exhibition received the Cinekid ‘Best New Media production’ award.
Inside the Bartholomeus hospice in downtown Utrecht, guests are invited to step aboard our timemachine. The adventure takes them through 650 years of history, starting in 1367, when the first stones of the hospice were laid. The animation, with surround sound and synchronized showlighting, is composed out of parts of many archival paintings and photos. The project was a great collaboration with a talented team: illustrator/animator Hilde Buiter, composer Robert Jung, voice-over by Ingmar Heytze and show-technology by Flink. The permanent exhibition was opened by queen Maxima, so she was the first to take a ride in our experience.
My experience in computer graphics comes of great use when designing. It gives me the ability visualize the audience experience, and to create engaging imagery to sell and communicate my ideas. I also offer these skills on freelance basis.
I am only passionately curious. - Albert Einstein
Firstly for all non-Dutch people wondering, my name Gijs, is pronounced as ‘Gheis’/‘Gize’/‘Gice’. :)
I am active as filmmaker and experience designer. These seemingly distant professions actually share the same tools to tell a story: design, technology, light, sound and music. Being active in both worlds I am able to come up with refreshing innovative results.
Currently I am employed parttime by Tinker Imagineers as experience designer. At Tinker I was one of the core creatives behind the exciting Tirpitz museum, and am currently one of the lead designers of the new Natural History Museum of Copenhagen.
A brief overview of my creative life; I spent my early days in the Dutch countryside building haunted houses, waterslides and a rollercoaster. In my teenage years my dreams outgrew the backyard’s size, so I started experimenting with film, photography, animation, (interactive) computer graphics and music.
Studying industrial design provided a solid base to continue combining creativity and technology. Then ending up in an exhibition design studio (Platvorm) felt like coming home: it combined all of my interests: design, architecture, film, sound, lighting, technology etc.
The following two years I lived in London, attending my Master of Arts in Narrative Environments at renowned art- and design-school Central Saint Martins. I experimented with combining my passion for film, image, design and music, was mentored by production designer Alex McDowell (Fight Club, Minority Report), and spent many hours studying the Stanley Kubrick archive.
Back in The Netherlands I made another dream come true by setting up a studio-space in the royal district of Den Haag (Denneweg), where I can develop exciting creative projects and continue to follow my curiousity.
I participated in projects for...
I get inspiration from...
- william turner
- roy andersson
- edward hopper
- la grande bellezza
- hayao miyazaki
- portico quartet
- 2001: a space odyssey
- gregory crewdson
- joseph wright of derby
- the third and the seventh
- lucas zanotto
- tim burton
- cinematic orchestra
- kings of convenience
- dougal wilson
- universal everything
- charlie chaplin
- ryoichi kurokawa
- peter greenaway
- ian pons jewell
what I can offer you
I am very comfortable in designing and directing complex multidisciplinary projects. I am a creative-technical problem solver, with a logical design process, strategic creative ideas, clear communication and enormous passion for creative projects. I love using my toolset and open mind to help you tell your story and engage your audience.
I make engaging films and commercials with carefully crafted cinematic qualities and distinct atmospheres. I function best when patiently working with a small multi-disciplinary crew and an innovative approach to tackle complex ideas and achieve cinematic production value. Being skilled with camera/light, music/sound and visual-effects I can work very efficiently and communicate clearly (e.g. storyboarding using refined previz-animation).
I design engaging, innovative experiences for festivals, museums, themeparks, brand experiences, shopping-windows etc. My abilities span the whole process. This includes the production-phase, for which I can employ my network of reliable passionate craftsmen in construction and electronics.
I also offer my services as freelancer. I have especially proved valuable when working in exhibition design studios.
I am valuable during early brainstorms. I have up-to-date multidisciplinary knowledge and experience in design, technology, art, film, music. My industrial-design background results in logical reasoning, but also being very open-minded and easily coming up with innovative cross-disciplinary ideas. I embrace the challenge of clearly communicating complicated content.
I am passionate about making the experience come alive from the very early stages of the design process. Visualising using photorealistic collage techniques allow me to quickly create engaging atmospheric imagery that sells and communicates the ideas. Additionally I use animation/sound or build rough (interactive) prototype-installations to provide early inspiration and insights.
Gijs Leijdekkers (B.Eng, MA)
Studio Gijs Leijdekkers
filmmaker and experience designer
Den Haag, The Netherlands
Join my newsletter to receive an email when I upload a significant new project to my website. I will send out no more than 4 newsletters per year.