New Stop-Motion Collage Video!

Winston C.W. asked me to make a video utilizing collages for his beautiful new single, Business, from his upcoming new album. I’ve never done anything like this but wanted to try using stop-motion animation, and love the way it came out! Here’s a little bit about how it was made:

I wanted to have a central character that travelled through different landscapes that start stark and desolate, that literally reflected the lyrics, and gradually moved towards more luscious and abstract environments. I like the contrast of nature vs. science fiction/fantasy to tell a story of physical vs. mental spaces and how they coexist.

But mostly I just really like this song and wanted to have a little guy wander lost through a big weird world and hang with animals along the way.

Books/mags used: Canyons of America, Canadian Landscapes, 1980’s National Geographic Magazines, 1970’s OMNI Sci-Fi Magazines
After spending some time with the song, my process was the following:

  • Find backgrounds/environments that might complement the song
  • Find a main character who could travel through these scenes; I found a superhero character with his back turned and a heart on his cape, which I thought was perfect for what the storyteller is going through. I also like how small he is in comparison to the vast worlds he moves through.
  • Pick out scenes that would flow in a story and alter if needed. For example, I cut lines behind hills in the cactus scene, both for cacti to emerge out of and so the main character could fall into seemingly a cave, which is the next scene.
  • Find other characters and smaller environment objects to add to backgrounds and interact with the main character. Some of these I already had cut out from my collection. Have some of the other characters/objects continue into the next scene to support a continuous thread.
  • Write a sticky note for each scene describing what happens, like a storyboard for a movie.
  • Once I had all my pieces for a scene, I’d tape the background to my desk, position my stop-motion camera app above the desk and start taking shots, moving the pieces the smallest amount after each picture, until all scenes were compiled and put to the music.