A Stop Motion Adventure

Hey hooligans! We hope you've checked out and enjoyed our newest lyric video for "Need (No Love)" -- but if you haven't, take a look:


This lyric video is created with stop motion animation-- more specifically cutout animation.


Growing up, I enjoyed creating short skits with my friends and editing the footage together. Considering I also have a love of animation and pretty much no actual artistic talent, stop motion animation was on my radar. I experimented with it briefly in high school, but never actually finished a project.


In talking about our next lyric video, Cisco and I came up with the idea of stop motion and decided that we could definitely pull it off now. We'd use magazine cut-out letters to create a lyric video. "Need (No Love)" seemed the obvious choice for the project.


The song, "Need", itself came together rather fittingly in a cut-paste style. Back in the fall of 2016, Cisco had written a song with only a verse and pre-chorus. When it came time to figure out which tracks we were going to record for the album early the following year, "Need" was not on that list as it was unfinished. Then, Rob came up with the chorus melody almost out of thin air and we spliced the two ideas together. After some lyrical tweaking by Cisco and each of the band members adding their parts, it became a swift addition to the album.


For the lyric video, I spent a little over a week cutting out ideal letters in my spare time to create a library from which we could spell out the lyrics to the song. This included individual letters and chunks of words that could be used to build the lyrics of the song.



Cupcake tins allowed for easy sorting of letters

The next step was a sort of story-boarding -- laying out the complete lyrics out of the letters we had cut out. This process proved to be a bit more time consuming than anticipated... and also put our dining room table out of commission pretty much until the video was complete.



Then comes the fun part-- the actual animation. We set up a tripod with the camera facing at the ground and taped a white piece of paper on the floor to mark our spot. Working backwards for the most part, we laid out where each lyric would end and then animated the paths of the letters into that formation. Each frame is a new photo; over 3,000 photos were used to create the video.


And with an awful lot of file organizing on the computer side of the things-- each section was plopped into place in the video with each photo acting as a frame and a frame rate of roughly 10-15 frames per second (there are a few sections that the frame rate is higher or lower in order for the animation to line up with the music). That's a pretty low frame rate, but it adds to the choppy, cut out feel of the finished video.


It was quite an experience putting this one together. An experience that may or may not be repeated in the future. We hope you enjoyed the finished product of all that work!


-Kelsey

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