Inspired by the 1972 American feature-length pornographic film “Behind the Green Door”, this work represents some of the key emotions Du was experiencing during constant bouts of depression in 2014. Choosing a music video as the format, he produced it with “Blue” by Elephant Dee because according to him, “this song gives the listener a quality of mysterious calm” and “brings out my inner power to directly face those blue feelings”. Using artistic expression as catharsis, he sought to honestly and authentically represent his feelings, making “Blue” an obvious choice.
“I was going through a deep depression at the time, so this project was a chance for me to throw everything out of my chest. Initially I heard this song “Blue” by Taiwanese artist Elephant Dee, and somehow it resonated with me a lot. It was like a therapy to me, I’m not exactly sure why. The original music video was perfect. But I saw an opportunity to express my own feelings by creating my own version, which is more about how I personally feel about the music. It was meant to express how I became blue under a very personal circumstance.
During my creative process for the script and the storyboarding, the 1972 American feature-length pornographic film, Behind the Green Door, was my biggest inspiration.
My visual vocabulary was always pretty straight forward. I don’t like to trick my audience with anything they can’t be connected with. We now live in an oversimplified world. We own the rights and spaces to decide in which way we like to think. So I just lay everything out in their basic visual forms in front of my audience, I felt like that is the most comfortable way for me to be creative. The lyrics mentioned ” the fish is blue”, I literally prepared a fish and asked my actress to hold it at that exact moment; And the song is called blue, so for the coloring process, I colored my video clips into a bluish tone. I believe in the power of direct, honest messaging. People feel good about the quality of being honest, even it looks not that smart, people will accept you for being truly open to them. People own their own mind, and design should never be used to trick people or force people into certain standard.”
After Effects, Adobe suite, DaVinci Resolve
So the preparing and scripting is the most important part, once you have a rundown for how you gonna shoot, everything will go really smooth, even some unexpected issues happen, you can just skip or think of something else immediately. And rundown is basically how you arrange your shooting on that actual day, that involves many real-life coordination, like the location, props, and your crew’s activities. Just arrange it in the best way you think you can get things done quickly. And remember, the actual shooting day can be a huge mess, you just need to get through this one day.
And then come to the editing part, color all the clips first with DaVinci Resolve first, then import everything into after effects. I do everything else in after effects, so I don’t have to switch back and forth from one to another.
This work was selected by the American Institute of Graphic Art (a professional design organization founded in 1914) to be featured on their Members Gallery, where only the best works promoting the AIGA community are displayed. To be completely honest, this was a huge surprise for me. Some people felt that the video was really weird. I am totally cool about that. In fact I take that as a compliment.
After this project, I made my decision to focus on motion and video as the direction of my career.