It’s been a super snowy week here in Sapporo but I’ve been staying busy. Work is picking back up after the holiday break, and I released a new music video to boot! I talked about the song “Olm” last week so this week I thought I’d shed some light on my video creation process, give you a little making-of info. So strap in!
Olm Official Music Video
Well wasn’t that trippy? Deep dreamy even? Of course I have my own ideas about what the video “means” but I think I’ll leave that aspect of the art up for interpretation. Part of the fun of making art, for me at least, is the fact that the creator’s message or vision will probably not be what the viewers take away from it. (That’s part of the reason I enjoy language as well.) It’s almost like a second unique act of creation that happens after the main work has been completed.
But no, today I’m just going to get into the sources and techniques I used during the making of the video.
I used three B movie sources for the main content of the film. All of them in the public domain and all of them terrible movies (one’s pretty fun, but still awful). I wanted to match the song’s image of caves and dragons, so I dived into online archives looking for scenes showing specifically those things. I can’t remember the total number of awful B films I had to watch to find this stuff, but it was worth it.
The opening scenes are taken from a 1959 film called “Beast from Haunted Cave” by legendary director Roger Corman.
A group of gold thieves pull of a heist and flee into the snowy wilderness, only to be pursued by a horrible, spider-like monster.
Lot’s of good cave scenes, but the actual monster is more of a spider thingy so I avoided most of the ending content.
After the introduction I switched over to some shots from “The Incredible Petrified World” which was made sometime between 1957-1960 depending on who you ask.
Four people lowered in a scientist's (John Carradine) diving bell are trapped in an underwater cave.
Overall a pretty boring film, or in nicer terms it’s very “relaxing” to watch. BUT it has my favorite character: Crazy Old Underground Man. AND it has the best closeup shot of a smiling face I’ve ever seen. Which I used not only to kick of the first chorus, but I loved it so much I stuck it in the thumbnail. A movie with very fun clips to use, not so much fun to watch.
Just after that crazy face scene I shift over to another 1960’s film, “Goliath and the Dragon” to tell the bulk of the second half’s story.
The fabled muscleman faces assorted deadly creatures in his struggle to reclaim his kingdom and the woman he loves.
This movie, oh man, this movie is incredible. Horrible acting and story, best monster fight scenes. I definitely recommend sitting down with popcorn for this one. It also had some excellent dragon fighting scenes with a pretty good Claymation model transitioning into a horrible puppet model. The best part is clearly Mark Forest, the macho lead actor. And it all adited together nicely for a damsel in distress/hero moment.
After cutting together the movie I decided to take advantage of the Deep Dream photo editing I’ve been experimenting with lately. I thought that a trippy scene would work nicely to emphasize the chorus of the song. And what better shot to use than that creepy, creepy, handsome smile from Petrified World.
Deep Drive only really works on photos. There is a way to do videos but I didn’t want to get too bogged down in coding. So I took the last frame of the closeup and Dreamed it 24-30 times, each frame crazier Than the last. This meant no moving images, but in hindsight I think that would have been too disturbing for the song. Freeze frame into trip was it.
After putting it all together I didn’t like the sudden shift into color or the clarity of the dream footage, so I had to edit the shot to visually match the other clips. Here’s a look at the original take of the face melt. This is directly from deep dream without any editing done aside from blending the shots together:
With this footage complete I did the same thing with the skeleton footage and then had my transition into dragon land. All I had to do was finish editing together the other shots, figure out a nice way to get into and out of the parts in color, and then match the cuts to the music. Overall the video took about two days to research/find footage, and then three days to make and edit together. I was really happy with the result given the time I had to spend on it, and I hope you enjoyed it as well.
I’m definitely looking forward to using this method in a more refined way in the future now that I have a better idea of the workflow. Perhaps in the coming months? We’ll see.
Deep Dog Dreams
Another benefit of working with deep dream for the video, is that I’m getting better at working on my own photos! I did a couple really fun pictures of my family’s dogs. It’s so fun to take these old photos and spend time with them while creating something beautiful and new.
The most interesting thing about deep dream is the randomized changes that happen with the generated images. Sometimes things come out way better than I’d expected they would. Sometimes, however, they come out a little bit goofy or scary. Here are some of the failed tries of the Lexi pic.
Anyway, I hope you found that little glimpse behind the work interesting! It was certainly fun to do, and I’m really happy with the result! If you liked the song you can stream it or buy it. (Which will help me make even more fun stuff in the future!) And if you liked the music video you can support my YouTube channel by sharing it around! Spread that creepy cave smile love.
I’ll be back next week with some of my 2021 resolutions. Now that the January releases are finished I’ve had a bit of time to relax and think about the coming year. Until then,
Stay creative, EB