Friday, January 28, 2011

Music Concept & References

To establish the other worldly mood, I plan to use atmospheric guitar sound scapes through out the piece. Plus, I plan to experiment with varied time signatures and poly rhythms, which I believe help create minimal music with a strong groove. It involves overlapping different time signatures, and the different grooves go in and out of phase which I think has a mind-bending quality.

TesseracT - Concealing Fate

The intro clean guitar motif has such a strong ambient feel. It is contrasted with the heavy over-driven guitars in the background. The clean guitar pretty much stays the same through out the piece and maintains the atmosphere, while the other instruments take the liberty to travel around. The chorus here has that groovy feel that I was talking about earlier.

Massive Attack - Dissolved Girl

This again has that quality, where the electronic drums and the repetitive samples establish the main groove and stays constant through out the piece while everything else wanders around it. The bass is very heavy and almost loud in the mix, which I believe is done purposely because it makes a kind of meditative mood. You could almost just focus on the bass line and reach a trance state of mind.

Visual Concept 1

Floating Guitar God on Lotus

This visual came to me in a dream about a few months back. I think subconsciously, I was trying to create a guitar God in an image similar to the God-images that I had seen as a child in India.

The image I saw was a fat man hovering over a pink lotus. His body was completely bleached white with out any hair. And he had a tube coming out of his head that suspended him from some extremely tall red colored tree behind him, like as if he was a fruit hanging on that tree. He had two long black lines on his face, and he played a red guitar, while seated in the yoga lotus pose.

I believe this is very similar and drawn from the Hindu God Laxmi, who signifies wealth and success. Her iconic image is her sitting on a lotus with a sitar and two elephants behind here forming a heraldic pose.

I want to use this image to create a supreme character in the piece around whom part of the visuals revolve. In the background we'll have two more characters to create the complete composition, very similar to the one with two white elephants.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Lighting Reference: Cassandra

Lighting reference for the Head Selection scene from "Ajax and Cassandra."

"Ajax and Cassandra" by Solomon Joseph Solomon, 1886

Lighting Reference Video: The Fountain

A collection of scenes from the movie The Fountain.

Lighting Reference Video: Unoder

This video shows how there can be still be a wide variety of interest in the frame even if the set itself is very minimal. Here the focus is much more on the costuming, often allowing the background to be nothing more than fog and rolling gradients. The lighting its self is soft but not so much so that its impact becomes less dramatic. While many of the actresses are often more flatly lit than in the Tool videos, the inclusion of the highly bright rim light to separate the characters from the dark background adds to the drama of the event and the overall softness giving it more of a feeling of high fashion or art akin to the films of Paramount in the 30's.

This gives it a sort of glossy exterior and with the addition of the slow motion, makes one feel as if they're watching porcelain dolls act out this highly ritualized sort of drama on a theater's stage. While obviously not very realistic, that isn't the point. This continues the sort of themes that we are looking into with the ideal of symbolic meaning and ritualism.

Under Byen - Unoder from Daniel de Vue on Vimeo.

Lighting Reference Video: Parabola

Parabola is an intriguing video. It too has its own feeling of self containment, creating an environment natural and wholly unique to itself. What is most interesting to me in this video is its emphasis on symbolism. These symbols can be linked to a sort of secret knowledge, the use of the apple for instance or the star contained within the circle (not necessarily a pentagram but invokes such imagery, perhaps pointing to its more ancient meaning of fertility or birth). The camera its seems to hold on the images often allowing for a cut in closer than originally further emphasizing its meaning.

The use of depth of field creates a kind of murky or hazing feeling through much of it giving it the viewer the feeling of always wanting to look deeper into it. This also has a sort of revealing effect, allowing these symbolic items to ascend out of the mist.

* Produced by David Bottrill
* Art direction by Adam Jones (guitar, backing vocals for Tool)

Lighting Reference Video: Schism

Lighting reference from Tool. This video is interesting in perspective to our project with the use of dark, minimalistic sets and full body makeup. The lighting which appear like reflections of lighting lilting across the area help add to this overall tone and atmosphere of the surreal and mystical. The music itself while changing in measure all the time creates a sort of meditative state in conjunction with the video's sort of slower pace.

The characters exist within this world, though strange and at times even unrecognizable when trying to find a human element to them, they seem completely natural to their environment and setting.

* Produced by David Bottrill
* Art direction by Adam Jones (guitar, backing vocals for Tool)