Sunday, 7 March 2010

Carlos Lopez Etrada & Cameron Clark "Chocolate" (Jesse and Joy 2010)

The sun shone so brightly today we sat outside. Cheerful day, cheerful song. You’ll love Chocolate by the splendid Jesse & Joy. It’s not just chocolate though, piped icing sugar, biscuits, candies and heaps of the sugar itself. It’s not every day you see all the props for a film boxed up and wished fervently your name was on the package. Directed by Carlos Lopez Etrada with lead animator Cameron Clark, the four minute music video is a sweet mix of digital animation and stop motion work. Cameron explains how he "pre-animated the motion for every shot with After Effects and then used a combination of Dragon Stop Motion, a projector, and a small team of animators to basically trace the motion that I had created digitally". The process works so very well. Completed in four sleep deprived weeks the crew made 3,000 shots of edible confectionery. In essence the two artists strum and sing in a series of framed poses as chocolate bean outlines, or gingerbread man and woman, or leaping over pink wafer rooftops. So biscuit trains blast out sugar steam, Joy is seen as a sand animation save she is formed from more of the granular stuff, and toasted picture puzzles have the sun and moon stamped on them, looking at once colourful and scrumptious. I genuinely like the music, a lilting, happy song, and the crew have compressed so many original confections into the piece that there is not one second lost. Words fail to do justice so have a look behind-the-scenes. In how many videos do you see the guys exhausted at the start of another busy day commence by melting chocolate with a blowtorch? Mexican brother and sister duo Jesse and Joy Huerta released their album Electricidad in September of last year and is now destined for my iPod. One of the finest music videos around at the moment, with not only an ingenious concept but a glorious use of colour and spectacle. And lest I forget, the crew comprised recent graduates and existing students. Working for peanuts or chocolate beans, I guess. Great work. Sake yesterday, chocolate today and, yes, coffee tomorrow. Such riches.


Cameron said...

A wonderfully thorough post, Ian. Thanks!

Ian Lumsden said...

Thank you for that, Cameron, a pleasure. I am unable to be thorough about all the material I feature due to lack of time. It's also pleasant to have a thank you.