So my first official directed music video is finally coming out as of tonight. If you read my earlier blog post you know it is for artist PlayWryte’s single “FIGHT CLUB”. Now if youve seen the very fast paced teaser, you might be in for a little suprised as the actual song is not very fast, it is actuality quite slow, but a slow teaser would be a boring one . Anyhow, Below I am going to post the video, and then go into some details of the process.
This was a a fun process that I definitely learned alot from and enjoyed every moment.
So how this all came out was just a fortuitous circumstance that PlayWryte added me on facebook while I was itching to do a music video. I had worked with Fetus Productions/Broadside Productions editing music videos for Luke Leanord such as Inferneon “GRAVEN IMAGE” and The Absence “ENEMY UNBOUND”, (Side Note : Just actually saw ENEMY UNBOUND for the first time online, looks like whoever uploaded did it wrong… shouldnt be squashed into that 4:3, but what can you do…) and then came in to do final editing/fix sync/color correct/add graphics to Beebs and Her MoneyMakers “HAND OUT” . Doing all of those really made me want to explore into music video territory, So when PlayWryte said he was looking for to do a video, we began a dialogue.
PlayWryte sent me his track for “FIGHT CLUB” and I listened to about 3 different versions as he fine tuned his sound, and instantly knew what kind of video this was gonna be. It wasnt flashy, It wasnt about anything other than the artists message. So I felt it needed to be black and white, with the focus being just a man in the city, a street poet of sorts. I then came up with a style sheet and sent it off to him. (see below)
I honestly went right to looking at the one video I know really was created to just give off a hip hop vibe that was more about the artist then the flash, “99 PROBLEMS”. The feeling of the video leaves you feeling like you just went through and received your dose of hip hop, without being bashed over the head. That mentality is what I was going for, PlayWryte agreed so I moved into preproduction.
Preproduction consisted of me bringing in my UPM Dantina Claire, who since acquiring her services for my short film ACTRESS has become my go to for any production, I honestly have never met someone who can get things done as fast or as good as she does, and you never have to ask more than once. Confidence in your people is a great thing, and she is a great up and coming talent that is a blessing to whatever production she is on. She finds a way to get me whatever I needed, whenever I need it. This shoot required the locking down of a location, and she got ON-LOCK skate shop of downtown Orlando to let us shoot, and she never even broke a sweat. Then on to location scouting for the rest of the shoot, which as stated, was going to be in downtown Orlando. I got with another talented filmmaker Adam Johns to come on board as a additional camera that I knew I could trust shooting additional angles while I focused on my own, as well as helping me with location scouting. I spent a weekend downtown taking pictures of various locations, which then brought to Adam who joined me on a another weekend outing downtown to do test footage of shots for me to be sure of framing and color correction. Shot on T2i 50mm 1.4 and 25-70mm 1.4. Editing Final Cut Pro. Color Correction Magic Bullet (see below)
Once all this was complete, and PlayWryte agreed to everything, we set a weekend downtown to complete the video. (SIDE NOTE: This is Florida, it was July, IT WAS HOT AS HELL) Dantina made sure all locations were secured, as well as making sure I was getting my shots and keeping the crew hydrated and as comfortable as possible. For the actual shoot, I decided to use the 5D for the main camera, and the t2i for a secondary camera/slow motion camera that would be manned by Adam. I brought on the talents of Andrew Sankovich to do my steadicam work. Andrew has become the go to guy for Steadicam as he makes a name for himself. His dedication to getting the shot right was key, especially in the ridiculously hot weather, If you have ever seen a steadicam rig, its not small.. or light so Andrew was a soldier. Day 1 consisted of Andrew doing all moving performance shots based on locations I discovered prior. The 2 locked down performance shots in 2 separate locations were then knocked out and it was on to day 2. Day 2 was the skate shop location shoot as well as the alley and walking shots. I tried to get these done as soon as possible because the heat was definitely a little bit on the unbearable side. I am very lucky to have had such a great crew and an artist who didnt get frustrated in the heat.
After all that was locked down, I got cranking on a teaser for the video SEEN HERE. I really wanted to make something that gained attention, and believe an edit such as shown could really do that. Then it was into editing mode. I really got into the video and made sure that It felt paced correctly, as well as creating a feeling that you were following the artist. I then brought in the graphic talents of Miguel Reyes to give me a slick title sequence for the video. PlayWryte would come in for routine milestone check ups, a final fine tooth inspection to make sure all lyrics were in sync, and then we were done.
I have really appreciated PlayWryte’s professional demeanor through the whole project. For a young up and coming artist I believe he really has a focus you dont see in many young rappers. I am excited to see where how his future continues to grown, and can only hope that a video by me can assist him in that adventure. Thanks again to my whole crew! You guys have been awesome! On to the next project!