Sylvain Chaussée is a filmmaker and photographer based in Toronto. He studied photography in France at Ecole des Beaux-Arts, as well as film production at Concordia University in Montreal. Currently, he works at Niagara Custom Lab in Toronto, mastering the processing and printing of all motion picture film. His personal work is based on experimentation with a variety of processing and printing techniques. He draws inspiration from the abstractions in everyday life, focusing on repetitive patterns, moving forms and natural light.
The owner and founder of Niagara Custom Lab, Sebastjan has spent the past thirty years working tirelessly behind the scenes of the motion picture industry. He has spent most of his life immersed in photographic processes, from a very early start as junior deck hand in his parent’s basement darkroom to starting his own processing lab fresh out of college. His passion for fixing old pumps, scrubbing dirty rollers and working double shifts has recently taken a back burner as the new challenge of a young family has asked him to switch gears, juggling kids having temporarily replacing his relentless driving of the film machine. Always looking ahead, he is very confident in the abilities of Team Niagara to maintain the lab’s position as the premier film processing lab in Canada for many years to come.
Derek Jenkins is a writer and filmmaker living in Hamilton, ON. His master’s thesis at the University of Arkansas focused on white southern masculinity and the films of Ross McElwee. Before immigrating to Canada in 2008, he wrote a weekly sports column at the Arkansas Times and worked in a variety of capacities with the Oxford American. Prior to joining the Niagara Custom Lab team in late 2015, he was a faculty member in Language Studies at Mohawk College . His interests include handmade culture, poetry, documentary practice and personal film making.
Joining the team head on in 2017, Adam has taken the reins on the scanner. Inspired by the idea of a “Custom Lab,” he values the variety of projects that come to the lab and works flexibly and openly to collaborate with each artist. Adam is an experimental filmmaker currently focusing on short films and music videos. Utilizing Niagara’s scanner Adam practices a variety of passes with his film including manipulation, re-framing, rewinding, etc. He is an alumni of Humber College for Theatre Production as well as Film & Television Production.
Ali is the front-end manager at the lab. She is a writer and aspiring filmmaker who studied Literature and Communications at McGill University where she received a B.A. in 2015. She has worked for independent comic book, magazine and chapbook publishers and as a playwright and director for theatre. Prior to Niagara Custom Lab, she worked as an Editorial Assistant at Metro News Toronto where she still writes on a freelance basis. Aside from learning the art of analogue film processing, her interests include personal film making and multimedia storytelling.
Greg is a graduate of Ryerson University’s School of Image Arts and a former Technical Coordinator for the Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto. For the past five years Greg has been in Vancouver working in the Film, Video and Integrated Media Department of the Emily Carr University of Art + Design, teaching workshops, and helping students.
Christina Stewart has a background in Media Arts and is a graduate of the L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation at George Eastman Museum. Trained as a film and media archivist, her past experience includes working with collections held at the Canadian National Exhibition Archives, George Eastman House, Northeast Historic Film, the National Steinbeck Center, and the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Center. She has taught film workshops through archival associations across Canada. Currently, Christina is Assistant Media Archivist at Media Commons at the University of Toronto.
Our Warmest Thank you; Niagara Custom lab wishes to extend a very warm thanks to all those who over the years have worked in a full time, part time, contract, student internship or volunteered their time to help make this place what it is today. Although we have moved several times and grown our facilities and will continue to change we always keep in our hearts those who have helped us along the way.
Martha Henrickson, our original office manager, Mario Marquez; processing, printing and repairs, Willie Marin; film processing and inspection, Alexi Manis; office manager, sales and promotion, Nathan Moles; negative cutting and film inspection, Christina Battle; overall help in all positions, Andrew Lennox; optical printing, lunch schedule and special projects, Blair Hockeybag; film set up and contact printing, Erin Funchion; film cleaning, inspection and overall help, Pablo Perez; office manager, digital imaging, public relations, post office runs, Noah Henderson; film set up cleaning and scanning, Adam Stewart; film breakdown set up and film scanning, Jess Gomes project logging, film set up, breakdown, film cleaning and post office runs.