25 Jul TOKiMONSTA – “Clean Slate” / Toki’s Monstas Animated Interactive Music Video (w/ Director & Artist Interviews)
In the brightly-colored music video for TOKiMONSTA‘s “Clean Slate”, featuring Gavin Turek, adorable creatures galore get beamed down from outerspace as well as give you control over placing their sticky behinds.
fourclops ::) are an incredible duo consisting of Jeff Greco and Eli Stonberg, who create interactive music videos for unique web-browsing experiences.
Their work for MNDR’s “C.L.U.B.” takes information from your Facebook feeds and integrates it seamlessly into a music video footage.
A two-person animation, illustration, and live performance unit comprised of Jason and Aya Brown, Overture use intuitive and improvisational collaborative processes to “reach creative places neither could arrive at on their own.”
This dreamy, jiggling piece entitled “Mr. Sandman” features music by The Kleenrz.
Toki’s Monstas is obviously a play off of TOKiMONSTA’s name. How was the entire piece conceptualized, and what is the idea behind it?
Eli Stonberg of fourclops: The idea of a sticker book music video has been something that Jeff and I have been kicking around for years. We had previously made an interactive coloring book music video for the band Au Revoir Simone and felt like this would be a great follow-up.
Jeff Greco of fourclops: We love the idea of collaborating with the viewer to create a creative piece that they can then keep and share. Traditionally, music videos are about directors interpreting the musician’s work; now the viewer can interpret, play and create along with us.
We knew there were going to be three locations in the video, so we came up with lists of creatures and plants found in these types of locations and took elements from existing creatures to create familiar but alien forms that could live on the planet.
With so many people involved, what was the workflow like? How long did the project take?
Eli Stonberg: The project went from January to March. We were able to work simultaneously on many of the elements and then put them all together in the end. One of the cool aspects of collaborating with so many people is that our individual choices inspired each other. For instance, Overture had begun their sticker artwork before our stylist Ellie Carey came on board, so she was able to design the wardrobe in watercolor style that would fit with the monstas. And conversely, one of the last things that Overture designed was the instruments that the monstas have in the end of the video. They modeled the squid monsta’s instrument based on the instrument that Ellie made for TOKiMONSTA.
Jeff Greco: Sometimes these projects can be very sequential, but like Eli said, it was really helpful to be able to do so much work in parallel. One of the first things we completed was a proof of concept sticker book demo, and I was able to start building off of that before the actual video portion had even been shot.
What kind of programming was involved? Were there difficulties between conceptualization and execution of the idea?
Our goal is always to create something that feels really fresh and new — there’s never an instruction manual for what we’re building so there’s a lot of potential for headache, but this project didn’t have too many bumps in the technological road. Keeping all the monstas in sync with the video we shot proved a little tricky.
This “music video” possesses very exciting implications for the future. What expectations, if any, do you have for this realm of artistic practice? Are there any projects similar to this one that have stuck out in your mind?
Jeff Greco: My only expectation is that projects will continue to break out of traditional molds in new and surprising ways. For over thirty years, music videos had to be 4:3 audio/visual tracks under five minutes that MTV could rotate through their lineup. Now they can be experiences that utilize the full range of immersive technology available. Watch for collaborative experiences, long-form experiences, location-based experiences… the interactive video “Do Not Touch” for Light Light’s “Kilo” by Moniker is a great example of showing how the web can turn a video into a super-fun collaborative experience.
Eli Stonberg: Chris Milk and Vincent Morisset are the early pioneers of the genre that I look up to. If anyone is interested in checking out more interactive videos, 2Pause has a great curated channel. It’s an exciting time because so few interactive music videos have been made, so there’s a lot of new territory to explore. I expect to see more and more interactive videos pop up over time. As it stands, labels are a bit hesitant to try new things, but I’m optimistic.
TOKiMONSTA – “Clean Slate” (Toki’s Monstas) Music Video Credits
Director: fourclops ::)
Artwork by: Overture
Executive Producer: Jack Richardson
Producer: Judy Craig
Director of Photography: Tarin Anderson
Director of Technology: Jeff Greco
Editor / Compositor: Andrew Hakim
Asst. Editor / Colorist: Eli Stonberg
Stylist / Art Director: Elie Carey
1st AC: Ian Barbella
Gaffer: Patrick Hubbard
Electric: Steve Mansour
Key Grip: Rex Kenney
Grip: Nick Lancaster
Hair / Make Up: Fenex
Still Photographer: Alexandra Brown
Directors Assistant: Elliot O’Dea
Production Assistant: Dan Meyerowitz, Katy Cain, Leah Stone
Intern: Megan Niquette
Special Thanks: Chuck Schwarzbeck
Production Company: The Masses
Director’s Agency: United Talent Agency
Record Label: Ultra Music