SILVER SHADOWS - YOU WERE RIGHT
'You Were Right' is a collaborative music video for the band Silver Shadows. It explores an exchange of one’s freedom for the power of prophetic knowledge. The seeker (Megan Low) is guided into darkness by the Guardian (Margo Rhodes), where the Gatekeeper (Colleen Johnson) conducts a ritual of digital metamorphosis. The Seeker must choose between the freedom of ignorance or the binding knowledge of knowing her own fate. I had the pleasure of working with several artists on the animated visions including CondorXXX, NightHooch, and Krisian Lindén.
Role: Direction, Cinematography, Editing, Animation, Sound Design
Client: Silver Shadows / Volar Records
The scenes were all graded in Davinci Resolve Light and edited in premiere by Peter Clark. The echoing dance projections were shot with a single projector set-up and duplicated in after effects to create a psychedelic glitch effect. A large TV monitor was laid flat on it's back to create the illuminated table on which the character's hands were scanned.
The cinematography style was heavily influenced by the films Suspiria, Beyond the Black Rainbow and Enter the Void. Everything was shot on a black magic pocket cinema camera with a voigtlander 25mm lens. Sean Dekkers was kind enough to donate a DJI Ronin steady-cam rig for the single shoot day at Studio Shotwell in San Francisco, CA. Pick-up shots were done in small studios.
The final section portrays a transcendence into pure digital existence, our personalities are melded into pixels and light. It was an interesting experience to see how every artist interpreted the themes and worked within the constraints of two colors and a one second duration. It was also great to work with friends and new collaborators (shout out to Kristian in Finland!)
Several artists worked on the animated vision sequences. Above are the ones created by Peter Clark. Each round of visions were centered around a theme of physical evolution. The first sequence explores our origins in nature, featuring brain coral, skulls, flowers and other natural elements. The second explores our evolution into technology and structured cyber cultures.
Volumetric projections were shot as transitional elements, pulling the seeker in and out of her visions. The projected patterns are also used in her echo-dance scenes along with several animated scenes.
Several practical FX were shot to mix with the animated vision sequences. Several types of lenses and modifications were used including a microscopic attachment. Other optical tricks such as placing a quartz crystal in front of the lens were also used to distort imagery.
All the equipment was rented from Little Giant, which consisted of several C-stands, two Arri L7-C Lights and way too many sand bags. A haze machine and 200ft of construction plastic were also purchased to create the cold hallway scene.
The main shoot was done at Studio Shotwell in San Francisco, California. I was lucky enough to have an amazing team of friends that helped with grip, lighting and camera assistance. The entire shoot took around 10 hours and involved two main stages.
The title graphic was shot practically by displaying the animation on a TV screen with water and plastic over top. Several LED lights were run through a sequencer as the haze machine ran smoke through the strobing scene.
MATERIAL & LIGHTING TESTS
The gas mask was purchased from an army surplus store in San Francisco for relatively cheap. The accompanying jacket and necklaces were rented from a local shop called 'Five & Diamond' which has all sorts of underground clothing styles.
We did a small array of tests to figure out how our plastic would interact with the lights. An early concept revolved around plants being back-lit behind the plastic, which eventually went away as the high price of large plants became apparent.
Director: Peter Clark
Music: Silver Shadows
The Seeker: Megan Low
The Guardian: Margo Rhodes
The Gatekeeper: Colleen Johnson
Cinematography & Editing: Peter Clark
Sound Design: Enternull