By Chloe Kent

NINETEEN-YEAR-OLD Callum Scot Bugbird, a Bass Coast local, is celebrating his first festival at Bass Coast Shorts this weekend.

Part of session two on Saturday, April 9, at 4pm, Goodbye My Mate is a melancholic tribute to Callum’s father’s mate, Polly, who died by suicide during lockdown.

“It means more to my dad (for his friend) to be a part of the festival. Polly’s music is played over dad’s beach art,” Callum explained.

For Callum, this film is his third major piece.

“In years 10 to 12, I studied media and got an interest from there.

“In year 12, I made a horror film during lockdown, and at university a mock TV news programme, which further developed my skills.”

Moving forward, Callum hopes to keep film as a hobby with side projects.

“I hope to do more, but I’ve got a job I’m really enjoying – although I am looking forward to joining the group for filmmakers.”

His style more aligned with psychological horror, with character pieces and a slow naturalistic pace, Callum likes compilating shots.

“In the horror film I had eery music over a time lapse – a hint towards the character going crazy and eating his family.”

Goodbye My Mate by contrast is a different piece of work for Callum but one he is proud of and glad to be showcasing to a wider audience.

“Dad is working on music production to see if Polly’s songs can be uploaded online (to a larger audience).

“My dad hadn’t seen Polly in person for a while.”

This physical barrier, however, did not affect their relationship.

“Polly was always quite an isolated person and drew a curtain over his life and ultimately his mental health.

“Our short film is a commemoration to Polly’s life and his music as well as highlighting the importance of offering support to your close family and friends.

“It’s important to look out for each other because they might not speak up.

“Always be kind – you never know what someone else is experiencing.”

If you need support, talk to a GP or health professional. Beyond Blue is available on 1300 22 46 36 or beyondblue.org.au; Lifeline on 13 11 14 or lifeline.org.au; MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978 or mensline.org.au.