The Charm Offensive
The Charm Offensive are Vancouver based synth-pop musical artists looking to have a series of music videos created to coincide with the release of their forthcoming full-length studio album. Each single off their current EP has its own unique identity and the client's aim is to have each video carry the spirit of every song in a unique way, a visual narrative to suit the individual sound of each song.
I was tasked by the client to devise a concept that paralleled the song thematically. However, after several meetings with the band it became clear that the best way to approach this project would be to devise a storyline and visual palette that matched the song in mood and tone, without trying to directly mirror the lyrics. I created several plotlines that could potentially work in achieving this goal, and eventually landed on the story that conveyed the spirit of the song in the most concise way possible, without being too literal. Conceptually, my aim was to have the narrative work to engage the audience through teasing the exposition very gradually throughout, which meant testing a series of storyboards with third parties to ensure that the final narrative was communicating what was intended.
Shot over the course of 4 days throughout the interior of Lynn Canyon Park, the bulk of the filming took place in the daytime under varying lighting conditions and I colour corrected in post to give the effect of a gradual transition from day to night. The editing process is where the visual narrative really began to take a more concise shape. I used a multi-layered approach to the visual composition while integrating elements of warm reds and violets to contrast the de-saturated blues I used to characterize the desolation of the wilderness wherein the story takes place. The day before shooting commenced, one of my actors took ill and needed to be replaced. However, as I wanted both characters to have a similar aesthetic, I could not find a last minute replacement that fit. I stood in, which presented its own set of unique and interesting challenges for shooting.
The initial final edit was an eight minute short film that existed in one linear timeline with the music commencing at the 4 minute mark until the final frame. However, after testing the video with several audiences, it became apparent that a more traditional music video format would communicate the story in a more clear fashion. In order to achieve this, I condensed the footage and opted to have the story exist in 2 separate timelines in order to tie everything together coherently. The result was a video that told the story that we intended, while engaging our audience more directly throughout.