I began with photographs of myself dancing. (Vanity disclaimer: Alter egos are a driving force in my life. Either film or video, I am able to will myself to do almost anything. I have found that photo directing other people takes as much skill and supreme commitment on their part as imagining the shot, in the first place.) My initial plan was to create a stop motion about a closet dancer—someone who is too shy to dance in public, but becomes a superstar behind closed doors. Then plan B went into effect. Over thanksgiving, my epiphany was to commit, random acts of dancing in public, and so I recruited a friend. The theme broadened to performance art.
above are shots of process: the fabricated stage and my cut out placed in it. I thought hand-written title text was appropriate to the unspoken anyone can be an artist of performance theme, but no, it failed; too sloppy, I agree.
the original storyboard below: (although during the creative process, plan b went into effect)The communication channels, I chose to apply to my show opener are image (video and still), music and text. The hierarchy is as follows: video absolutely drives this opener. Narrowing down the information to essentials from three separate performance scenes was difficult. The thirty-second time limit was both suffocating and helpful. I wanted to put in everything, but I have learned, a story becomes weak when too much repetitive information is given.
The music is strangely melancholy; a better description would be thoughtful. I wanted to avoid at all costs a mindless, superficial electronic dance beat. In some and maybe most cases, performance is something that originates within the fragile spirit and evolves into an expression previously possessed by the deep recesses—slightly melodramatic, but true. It’s fun and freeing, but absolutely not a superficial experience; that’s all I wanted to convey.
I chose to fabricate a stage with paper, drawings and fabric since the stage before me is only imaginary. My influence was the Science of Sleep sequences when the character, Stephane flashes back and forth, in and out of reality. To contain the text in a resonating manner, I placed it within the rays of colorful spot lights. My stop motion “me in a red dress” shots in the fabricated stage background are powerful and could have overtaken the hierarchy, but my need to allow the video to include intro shots to establish the scene (i.e. me walking into the laundromat) and crooked stares from each of my victims, reduced the space available.