Sunday, 11 January 2009

Creating a video for "Toys" by Frost* (Part 12)

Well, that's that!

I managed to put the widescreen/higher-res version into Jem Godfrey's hand at the CRS Awards last night. I think that's all I'm going to do with it now - not sure I could stand to do much more with it to be honest.... :o)

To round the process off, here is a list of what I thought I was doing....
Scene1 Bedroom
Frost* wordsearch posted on the forum by fellow Frost*ie gr8gonzo
Copies of Milliontown CD
Boxes of Jammie Dodgers
EIMA BOTY '08 poster (should have been anyway)
Frost* wallpaper and forum message ("Gig tonight, bring biscuits! Jem x")
Darwins radio
Apple computer
Frost* window cling
"Cleanliness is next to Godfreyness" needlepoint
Red Frost*ersisk poster
2 band group pictures and 5 individual framed photos the last of which, Andy's, falls down and out of the door (symbolising Andy's stopping live appearances with the band)
Scene2 Waterfall
Telephone box (Milliontown cover reference)
Gig poster
Box of Bourbon biscuits
Raft loaded with more Bourbons, Hobnobs and Tunnocks Teacakes
OurHero is dressed in swimsuit and rubber ring
Here Is The News - newspaper poster declaring river re-routed by a rock-fall - explaining why there is a waterfall and OurHero didn't know.
Sign warning of "Danger of Falling Down" - first EIMA track name reference
Classic Rawk magazine billboard - the two stars either side of the word "Classic" are Frost*ersisks. The picture is of Frost* "Outstanding" (in their field).
Posters contain three more track references "Pocket Sun", "Saline" (anagram of Aliens) and EIMA itself. The wedding photo on the Hellay! cover (BTW I first saw the word "Hellay" used by Jem on the forum) contains a simplified version of the Frost*erisk stained glass window that features in the EIMA booklet.
The What Hobbit magazine poster refers to the Forums love of "old prog heads" (i.e. Hobbits) and how they just don't "get" Frost*.
A sign to reinforce the fact that OurHero is trying to get to the gig.
Scene3 Ego thru Chorus #1
One of two "mega sets" shot in single takes.
The eGo catapult offers free travel to the gig.
The HITN poster suggests that eGo is a good way to view Mount Frost*more.
OurHero sails straight into the huge nose of the carved Mount Frost*more likeness of Jem.
As he hits the eyes say "Aye" (direct lyric reference)
and the mouth says "No" (not so clear on the lyrics here - the printed word says "the head say no" but after several listens I'm fairly sure that is not what is sung. I think Dec sings "the mind say "no" but it matters little really. I think the meaning is that the eys are attracted to the person that the song is referring to (so they say "yes") but the more cautionary "mind" (common sense) advises against.
The next line "Reason ebb and reason flow away" suggests an out of control following of the impulse and OurHero is surfing the wave bearing the word "Reason".
The waterwheel is just a way to get him up off the sinewave.
The location is the place "Easy" and out hero is heading east.
The HITN poster shows that the bridge as collapsed in 7 or 8 pieces ("bridge", "7/8" and "pieces" are also musical terms).
The skateboard ride goes down and around, jumping over the collapsed bridge.
On the other side, 4 pictures play on the lyric "sell your stock in jealouscide" by showing "a cell" (battery), an aircraft's yawing motion, a stocking, and the side of a cello....cell yaw stocking cello side....I know, it's awful!
Our Hero leaps from the skateboard and catches hold of a crane hook over the loading bay of Milliontoys & Co. Est 1976 (1976 is a track that got cut from EIMA - the 1976 here is not really readable though, still)
A large Pocket Sun newspaper poster "predicts" tomorrow's headline that a Frost* fan accused of some fraud will escape in a Tardis....a shocking future crime, no less.
OurHero gets wrapped up in one of the toys boxes and is thus good to go.
The lorry crashes into a lamp post outside the Wonderland (track name) Experience and OurHero is released and runs into the attraction.
He passes a bottle, the label of which says "Drink Me" with the letters getting smaller - I did have a shrinking effect lined up to use here but there wasn't time in the flow of the song to use it so the label is still pretty unreadable.
Scene 4 Looking Glass
This scene is probably the one of which I'm most proud.
After the Cheshire Cat eyes follow OurHero he passes his reflection in the looking glass.
He stops and runs back again and again we see his reflection.
On the third pass his refection has become a scary pumpkin-headed monster whch freaks out OurHero who flees the scene.
The thing about this scene is that LittleBigPlanet doesn't do mirrors - so the reflection is purely an illusion created by having two sack-boy characters, dressed identically as OurHero and each controled by a separate PS3 controller, run past the round hole at the same time. after the run-back, changed the second sack-boy into the monster and then edited the shots toghether.
OurHero runs into the premises of "Know-where"
Scene 5 Know-ware thru Underground
The sign "Welcome to Know-ware" is a play on another EIMA track title. The main thrust of this is that Jem reported that the back-up DVDs for the first album "Milliontown" turned out to be corrupted so the back-up was lost. The first part of this scene (and the HITN poster) suggest how that might have happened.
There are several great albums back-ups stored on the shelves here;
T3E, Kino, Eyes of the World, Metamorphosis, Dark Matter, Discordant Dreams, Pure, Tall Ships and Milliontown.
When OurHero activates the man-lift, the ladder starts these back-ups domino-ing which leads to Milliontown falling into the open furnace.
OurHero flees again falling through an open man-hole (like you do).
He falls into the museum and lands on the large Frost*erised UnionFlag that is part of ProgDog's election poster. ProgDog is an active member of the Frost* Forum BTW.
To the right of this is the EIMA stained glass window, again.
the ProgDog poster is knocked over and falls against a steel sculpture of "EC" twice. When hit, parts of this are dislodged, causing the Steel ECs to turn to "rust" (as per the lyrics).
OurHero has fallen onto and his whirling around on a floor polisher which sends him sliding past the Venus di Millio, a Frost*erisk with its arms missing, and five pictures and some scales representing the lyric "carpet hides the guilty dust away".
Car (John Mitchell's Connaught)
Pet (fellow Frost*ie Beano's little beagle puppy)
Hides (some leather-symbol style animal skins)
The gilt "E" (The Golden "E" is apparently an award that blogs can win)
Duster (a pink feather duster)
A weigh (The Million Ton scales which catapult OurHero up and out of the building).
OurHero falls down the steps of the Milliontown underground station
Scene 6 Underground thru Chorus#2
Our hero passes a couple of signs that indicate this is like a London Underground station. The line has three stops; Easy (where the water wheel was), Milliontown (this station) and The we are still going "east of Easy".
Another HITN poster reports that Meteors (from the shower mentioned in the HITN lyrics) have damaged the underground and, sure enough, the train falls into a pit, ejecting OurHero into a pipe of some sort.
He goes down and around again this time landing on the stock graph for Jealouscide Inc. (with 2 green letter "I"s....geddit? Jealous, green-eyes?....never mind....).
The best advice (another lyric reference from Wonderland) switches from "buy" to "sell" as his weight forces the stock to plummet and thus represents a fraudulent act triggering the alarms.
Escaping in the Tardis was predicted by The Pocket Sun poster so OurHero takes the shock and jumps into it.
Scene 7 Solo#1
The Tardis takes OurHero to a stage setting next to a huge version of John Mitchell playing a Cort-shaped guitar. The "CORT" in the headstock actually reads "UORI" which is a reference to the EIMA track "You/I".
John Mitchell's T-shirt reads "I dug the hole" followed by the morse for a full-stop. This is a reference to the morse code hidden in the track "Welcome to Nowhere" where the morse says, "I buried Andy".
Scene 8 Solo #2
OurHero runs across a large player piano which is being controlled by a huge punch-card.
the keyboard is white - like Jem's stage rig - and bears the name "FROST*" in the same Godfrey style spray paint like the flightcase he uses for the Roland FantomG6.
The notes played by the player piano are the actual notes of the solo that Jem is playing.
OurHero runs back into the Tardis.
Scene 9 Chorus#3
The Tardis has taken OurHero to the launch site of the free Forum Air hot air balloon.
Our Hero jumps in for a nice calm ride to the gig.
Of course, the strings holding the basket are not properly attached and shortly after take-off he plummets down and around, again.
Fortunately he lands right outside the Arena (John Mitchell band reference) and runs in.
The crowd are all wearing the new Frost* hoodies and bouncing more or less in time with the music.
OurHero runs up and crowd surfs his way on to the stage where we see him next to Jem on the keyboard.
Interestingly, my stage setup predicted the large red Frost*erisk back-drop they now use and the red Frost*erisk label that Andy had on his kick drum (although Andy's version is smaller than mine!).


So there you have it. there were several things I planned to do but missed out for various reasons....for example, the track name references are missing a few tracks but it matter little really.

The question is, what to do next?

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Creating a video for "Toys" by Frost* (Part 11)

Happy New Year!! (a bit late but, hey, that's me!)

Well after a couple of weeks of great fun spent with the family it's back to the drab routine of the day-job today (yesterday, actually). It's not all doom and gloom, though.
The CRS Best Of The Year Awards are on Saturday in Wath with awards presented by Steve Hackett along with Magenta and Frost* playing live. Can't wait….should be amazing.
In the meantime, I'm re-recording the "Toys" video following a request to produce a higher-resolution version. I'm forced to re-record it because, like an idiot, I didn't keep the VOB files from my DVD-RW recordings after I had converted them to (smaller) wmv files.
The up-side is I get to address some of the legibility and camera angle issues I had the first time.
The down-side is that I had forgotten how mind-numbingly tedious it was/is stopping and starting my Philips DVD Recorder for every take - the remote is the worst I've ever used - slow and zero tactile feedback.
Still, if I can get it done before the weekend I can hand it to the band and that will be that….on to the next challenge….whatever that might be….