Grace and Lies, Family Band‘s new album, came out July 24. “Night Song” is from this new record. Family Band is a collaboration between vocalist Kim Krans and her husband Jonny Ollsin, former frontman of the metal band Children. They have no shortage of creative talent, as you could see also from Kim Krans’ artwork.
“Night Song” video is directed and illustrated by the same Kim. In it, the singer’s face is embellished with a series of simple black-and-white projections. It looks simple, but it’s starkly beautiful. The videoclip is shots entirely in a single take and without the teeniest bit of post-editing.
The video editing is based on a slow short cut, keep in rhythm with the song. More than a metronome, It’s like a visual timer. Hypnotic and obsessive, this video bring all your attention, as there is no other near by you. All in black and with, with strong and sometimes annoying contrast.
All is build on two different layers.
The first one is constant: singing Kim’s video, a black and white close up on Kim’s face, static.
The second changes, and it is, rhythmically: an all black frame, or white paintings (made with Paint as software, yes, Paint…Have you ever think it could be cool?!) in black background, or masks, that make visible parts of the first layer, creating illustration with Kim’s face.
This three second layers are interchanged, sometimes speeding them up.
In the last minute of the video, the rhythm changes many times, until became something like a flashing.

When Imprint asks Kim how did she come up with the direction for this video, she said: “The sample beat in that song always reminded me of being at a slide lecture, if someone just kept pulsing different images in front of you. That got me thinking about making an animation of sorts, with drawings that shift and change and create a narrative. I thought it would be more interesting to have a protagonist that you see interacting with the drawings, and once I started working with how they look over the face, I realized we could do all these crazy things. When you do an animation, sometimes people are tempted to make it look really good or real, and having the beat establish when the drawings would change allowed me to make it funny. When the cats throw the ball over the head, it doesn’t need to go thirty-two frames for you to understand that it’s being tossed. We went with the comedy of it.
It was such a fun project because the drawings were loose, and they weren’t as finicky as the usual work that I do, but still really expressive. The whole project was a great release.”

We report an interview, made by Redefine at the videoclip’s director. Krans especially speaks about the concept behind the video and its creation process.

As a band member and the director of the music video, how much of your life would you say is rooted in art and music, respectively? Was this a new type of project for you?
I would say 100% of my life is rooted in art, and that’s the filter I make music through. A bonus of being in a band is that I get to make all types of visual things (live performances, videos, costumes, album artwork) under one umbrella. I’ve done lots of video projects for Family Band but this is the first one explicitly using my drawings, which made it really fun for me.

Was it always decided that the film would largely be in black and white?
Yes. Optical tricks and illusions are so fun in black and white. Also the video has a lo-fi, almost zine-like feeling to it, and I wanted to keep it that way. Once you start messing around with colors, making things look too hi-fi and earnest, the viewer’s expectations shift. I wanted the images dumbed down so that when a cat throws a ball to another cat it’s a big deal. The narrative depended on that simplicity.

There are a wide array of images presented, some more abstract and some very discernible and cartoonish. How were the projected drawing chosen, and was there any attempt at a narrative?
I initially thought this video would be all patterns, shapes, and trippy optical effects. But once I started messing around with the drawings projected on to the face there were too many weird and funny possibilities to pass up. The characters started coming out of nowhere and I just embraced it. Little narratives popped up here and there and I fleshed those out without getting tied into a linear storyline.

What was the approach you took to transfer the proportions from the drawing medium to real life? Was there difficulty in having the images line up as desired?
Every day I would work on the drawings, tweaking the shapes and the narratives. After dark we would project the drawings over my face to see how the images were lining up, and which parts of the storyline were the most fun to watch. I focused mostly on the eyes. If the eyes matched up, then just about any character would work, even Garfield or Yoda.

Direction, Art, Performance by Kim Krans
Technical Direction by Jonny Ollsin
Camera by Josh Allen

Enjoy and rethink about Paint!

Family Band – Night Song

Artist: Family Band
Kim Krans
June, 2012
Illustration, Short cut, Motion Picture
What's Cool:
Have you ever think that Paint could be cool?
Posted by
January 24th, 2013

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