Family Band – Night Song Music Video (w/ Director Kim Krans Interview)

“Night Song”, shot entirely in a single take and without the teeniest bit of post-editing, sees a scramble of projected black and white characters, shapes, and words transforming vocalist and director Kim Krans’ face and form into entirely new compositions every couple seconds. In the brief Q&A below, Krans addresses the concept behind the video and its creation process, and a small gallery of her visual art can be viewed. Their upcoming record, Grace & Lies, will be released via No Quarter Records this month.

 


 

As a band member and the director of the music video, how much of your life would you say is rooted in art and music, respectively? Was this a new type of project for you?

I would say 100% of my life is rooted in art, and that’s the filter I make music through. A bonus of being in a band is that I get to make all types of visual things (live performances, videos, costumes, album artwork) under one umbrella. I’ve done lots of video projects for Family Band but this is the first one explicitly using my drawings, which made it really fun for me.

 

Was it always decided that the film would largely be in black and white?

Yes. Optical tricks and illusions are so fun in black and white. Also the video has a lo-fi, almost zine-like feeling to it, and I wanted to keep it that way. Once you start messing around with colors, making things look too hi-fi and earnest, the viewer’s expectations shift. I wanted the images dumbed down so that when a cat throws a ball to another cat it’s a big deal. The narrative depended on that simplicity.

 

Family Band – “Night Song” Music Video
INTERVIEW CONTINUED BELOW

 

There are a wide array of images presented, some more abstract and some very discernible and cartoonish. How were the projected drawings chosen, and was there any attempt at a narrative?

I initially thought this video would be all patterns, shapes, and trippy optical effects. But once I started messing around with the drawings projected on to the face there were too many weird and funny possibilities to pass up. The characters started coming out of nowhere and I just embraced it. Little narratives popped up here and there and I fleshed those out without getting tied into a linear storyline.

 

What was the approach you took to transfer the proportions from the drawing medium to real life? Was there difficulty in having the images line up as desired?

Every day I would work on the drawings, tweaking the shapes and the narratives. After dark we would project the drawings over my face to see how the images were lining up, and which parts of the storyline were the most fun to watch. I focused mostly on the eyes. If the eyes matched up, then just about any character would work, even Garfield or Yoda.

Direction, Art, Performance by Kim Krans
Technical Direction by Jonny Ollsin
Camera by Josh Allen

Below, you can see samples of Kim Krans’ artwork, which features a whole suite of illustrated tarot cards. You can view or purchase more HERE.

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Written by
Vee Hua 華婷婷

Vee Hua 華婷婷 (they/she) is a writer, filmmaker, and organizer with semi-nomadic tendencies. Much of their work unifies their metaphysical interests with their belief that art can positively transform the self and society. They are the Editor-in-Chief of REDEFINE, Interim Managing Editor of South Seattle Emerald, and Co-Chair of the Seattle Arts Commission. They also previously served as the Executive Director of the interdisciplinary community hub, Northwest Film Forum, where they played a key role in making the space more welcoming and accessible for diverse audiences.

In 2017, Vee released the narrative short film, Searching Skies — which touches on Syrian refugee resettlement in the United States — and co-organized The Seventh Art Stand, a national film and civil rights discussion series against Islamophobia. 2022 sees the release of their next short film, Reckless Spirits, which is a metaphysical, multi-lingual POC buddy comedy for a bleak new era, in anticipation of a feature film.

Vee is passionate about cultural space, the environment, and finding ways to covertly and overtly disrupt oppressive structures. They also regularly share observational human stories through their storytelling newsletter, RAMBLIN’ WITH VEE!, and are pursuing a Master’s in Tribal Resource and Environmental Stewardship under the Native American Studies Department at the University of Minnesota.

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