Behind the Scenes of the music video”Above the Hiding” by The Novelists
The music video for Above the Hiding has been a long time coming. Eric Andersen and Joel Ackerson of The Novelists had the concept for the video long ago, and it was one of the most popular songs from 2016’s album, “Breaking the Script.” Even though it’s now 2018, and the band has a new album release, it was important for this video to be made, no matter the timing.
Above the Hiding is a powerful and very personal song. Written by Andersen, the song details the struggles of a person who is living a life dictated by society and the personas forced upon him. It’s very much a song about overcoming fears and coming to the true realization of ones self.
The band and I agreed that the video would consist of a mix of live performance inter-cut with a narrative story. The narrative concept came from Joel which played with the idea of reflections and how we perceive ourselves in society.
A Room of Hate
For the bands performance shots I wanted to place them in a setting that would also reflect the narrative story taking place. I decided to put them in what I lovely called, “the room of hate” surrounding them with words and feelings the band had provided. Words that had personally affected them through their own lives.
My set designer Hannah Sproul, was tasked to create the room in a studio setting so that we would have complete control over lighting and atmosphere. Hannah built the set from scratch and created an open corner room where we could film the band together and as single shots.
For lighting, I was very much influenced by the film Blade Runner 2049 and specifically the lighting in Wallace’s office, the main villains lair. The scene that influenced me has a harsh back light with the characters silhouetted mostly with a brief key light rotating in and out, illuminating them for a few seconds. The background of the room has a beautiful water pattern moving around, projected from the near by water source.
I took this idea and decided to light the background with a standard projector. I created an After Effects animation that consisting of white blobs slowly moving around the frame, very much like a lava lamp. By projecting these “light globs” on the background I was able to make the words of hate appear and disappear throughout the video. I also employed a rotating key light just off set on a high roller stand and had a grip manually bring the light in and out to create a silhouette with brief moments of fill light. The final light was a harsh back light to give them a dramatic silhouette.
The video had about 7 or so visual effects shots where I needed a mirror breaking effect along with images composited onto shards. Visual effects were created by Cory Anderson remotely from his studio in Maine. He worked with 5K 12bit cineform files and exported the same back to me for color grading.Huge thanks to Cory for doing amazing work!
Huge thanks to my entire cast and crew for making this music video a reality!
To hear more of The Novelists check them out at www.thenovelists.com.
Music – Eric Andersen, Joel Ackerson, Zack Teran
Lyrics – Eric Andersen, Joel Ackerson
From the album Breaking the Script.
The Novelists: Joel Ackerson – Vocals, guitar Eric Andersen – Vocals, piano Zack Teran – Vocals, bass, synths Miguel Jimenez-Cruz – Vocals, drums Guest musician: Jason Thomas – drums
Video credits: Director | Cinematographer | Editor – Bryon Evans
Executive Producer – Heather Hussey Lynch
Video Concept – Joel Ackerson
2nd Camera | Gimbal | Gaffer – Tyler Bourns
Visual Effects – Cory Anderson
Set Designer – Hannah Sproul
Casting & Costumes – Chad Sweet
Grips – Josh Birchfield, Kelly Sasso, Sean McKenna
Set Photographer – Shannon Balazs
Cast: Child Lead – Cooper Mills
Teenage Lead – Andrew Nielson
Adult Lead – Jeff Bentley
Boyfriend – Dustin Barbagelata
Extras: Ashley Robison Lynda Andrus Harper Peggy Andersen Laura Ofstad Kate Cotter Amber Ani Vic Davis Leah Crosby Leah Giesy Ted Levatter