Audley has released the video for "This That" featuring 4 Visual Concepts and 30 Drawings!
The video collaborators include: Grandace (Producer), JJ Baker (Artist), Nick Federinko (Video Editor), Benji Stiles (Fire Video), Nora Molinaro (Audley Video), and Death To Brand Guidelines (Creative Director).
The "This That" visual embodies a maximal approach displayed through a minimal lens. As the concept speaks on the ever changing state of experience, this collaborative effort brings that flux perspective to life. Everything changes constantly, but that's what makes it all the same.
Audley and JJ Baker worked together for 19 months on the video for "This That!" We got the inside scoop on the making of for "This That."Initial Idea for the Video
Audley: When I first was thinking about what I wanted to fo for This That, I didn't even want them to be in videos. I wanted to scan all the documents and put them in a Cinema4D space. I wanted to spell This That out of little cubes and the cubes would each be a drawing. I remember I showed you (JJ). I gridded out THIS THAT and said if we made 120 drawings we could create a file where people could click through it and move around literally THIS THAT made out of the drawings that were symbolized by the song.
I sent you (JJ) that photo - but then was like oh shit this is almost 120 drawings to cover one letter. From that point - I think we did a really good job of letting the vision reveal itself because I remember we realized that the drawings needed to come first. Once (the drawings) were done then we can figure out how they'll come to life.
Text In Images / Type Stan / DTBG
JJ: ... the drawings were great because I love in my work incorporating text in images so this was a good exercise in incorporating text to stuff. I love the one with Blinding Goddess Creature. I used FKA Twigs as the reference and have light coming out of her eyes which is fun.
And the drawings were great because since I knew I was going to make a number of them I just kind of cranked them out. I didn't think too hard or stress too much about what they'll look like. And they became super fun so it's great to look back and think - yeah - I would do a couple at a time and then once we had them all we were like "What are we going to do with these?" and we started bouncing around ideas for the next steps of the project.
Audley: I remember when you (JJ) sent over the first batch and had words on them, playing with text. You asked me "hey, is this cool? do you want words on these?" I think it helped that we were on the same wavelength of experimentation. We both wanted to push all of these and have none of them be the same typeface.Miraculous Metronome with the cursive coming out of the ticking thing. No Cream Hold The Splenda that was like the fucking steam coming out of the coffee. Shit like that! Towards the end you were just having fun with This That. The one with the negative space that is overlapping. We were like OOOOOOOOHHHH the whole time because we're both really into type.
JJ: We both love Robert Indiana's work. He does the giant "LOVE" and us loving that shit and the negative space between letter and just these things being shapes - we're both very attracted to that. It was definitely fun for both of us to work with text in these things.
Drawings As The Through Line
Audley: Having all of these things going on, it's like okay, this is utter chaos but there is a through line where one image is in every screen no matter what is going on - and it's coinciding with the narrative of the song. It doesn't matter where these blocks rumble or show up or disappear to. No matter where you look you're getting the line. Us knowing that we wanted the drawings in all of it at all times, that allowed us to really push placement and timing. I think that is really cool.
Also when you (JJ) sent over the walkthrough videos (Concept 1) they were all a little different from each other and it was kind of attractive to see the loose line of the constellation where the stars are supposed to be, and how cometimes the line might be a little bit more curved or might take a little bit longer but we are hitting all of these points to create this thing and I remember I was like OOOOOOOOH we'll use more than one of the same attempted video in the final video.
Let's push the maximal even further where we'll have multiple of what people will think are the same video but they are slightly off. That's so cool, that's so real. That's so This That.
The concept of the song itself is everything is constantly changing and it's constantly moving around. Right now it's this and tomorrow it may be that but that's what keeps it the same and it's so fucking cool to visually represent that doing the same video and it being 75% each time. It's like oh hey that is the purpose of this song which is super rad.
Inspiration (Toro / Kanye) Maximalism / Surrealism
Audley: (Toro) did this thing where it would be like the whole background was this super trippy 3d textural aeomeda thing and then it would be the front of the visual and then the back would be this living room and in the living room on the tv would be the music video and then he would kind of like sit on the chair and then perform the song as well.
It was just a really cool way to see you can put a video on top of a video intentionally. I dont know, there is a jarring aspect to it - but when there is intention behind it it's HOT you know what I mean? It's cool. It's not just like oh we need these 2 things to be conveyed just - don't crop it just put it somewhere. It's like - no. We LIKE the almost anxiety that comes along with the over stimulus in this video. Let's push that and see what that concept brings to life.
(Regarding Kanye's Wash Us In The Blood Video) - ... but like the juxtaposition of very calm beautiful serene imagery and shapes next to low quality "you're not supposed to be watching this" video I watched that thing a million times. I was just like WOW how cool is it to put two things that aren't supposed to go together in once space and then THAT be it's own commentary in itself.
Just like WOW. Literally put any two ingredients into a pot and see what it tastes like.
JJ: That is a very surrealist idea - putting two random things next to each other.
Chaos / Audley / Minimalism
Audley: Chaos is not super sext to everyone. But it's like - one clean curved line on one other color is HOT, it's sultry, it's digestible and accessible. I think like going home and making ROY and realizing as long as no matter what I'm putting on the canvas - as long as it's me - that it's good and it is compelling and it is sexy no matter how chaotic it is. I think this video was a really cool way for me to turn the dial the exact opposite direction because I've been depriving myself of maximal output my entire career as an artist.
It's like alright right now things are super maximal, but I'm already working on a shoegaze project for Audley where it's one instrument and it's like we're just going up and down on this rollercoaster of expression and it's super rad that we got to link during this maximal output.
I totally could have hit you up during minimal stuff. I mean I even have those beautiful canvasses of you painting the album art in my room, but i don't know. It's been really cool to explore a maximalist lens together you know?
JJ: It's true. It's funny I almost forgot about those paintings man. And it's almost like the work that we've done together kind of started as minimal where I started painting from photos and album covers. And then I remember that PINK painting I did was a little more maximal and a little more pushing the envelope and then this is even farther down the rabbit hole of chaos and maximalism.
And it's definitely like maximal and minal are kind of like two sides of expression and what not and you kind of like go back and forth between both of them and either one can suit whatever project you're working on.
Yeah and it's funny just thinking about maximal and minimal as these two bipolar things as well as THIS THAT and again it's the concept of the song that has really, even without thinking about it, dictated what we were doing with this song and video.
Benji Fire Video Origin Story
JJ: At first I thought about doing it just walking down the middle of the street by the studio. But then - there was this space under an overpass that was under construction and that space was really interesting so we ended up shooting under there.
The shot that we took ends with a view of Houston so when we played it in reverse you kind of start with the view of Houston and me lighting the images and then you work back from there. That was one of those beautiful things of working through this idea and along the process working and filming in this space that was pretty cool.
Audley: Yeah it came out so cool. Just deciding on that becoming the backdrop was such an easy evergreen, but also a very large decision.
JJ: And it's funny, the whole maximal thing because that video (Fire Burning) could just have been the video, but we were like no no no that is the background that is the starting point.
And I very much feel that with a lot of my work which is like I start with something and I get a background down and it can be really interesting and compelling but I'm like no no no this is just the beginning I'm not done yet I have to keep pushing and I'm glad we did that.
Audley: Nick I met through SLIME (Sylmar) boys and he was just like shooting videos for them and it was always just hanging out at MOTR and shooting the shit, whatever. When I started going on my journey post PINK and into ROY when I went to Dayton, Nick was one of the first people to reach out to me and be like "dude I've been watching what you're doing and I'm listening." you know? I don't know. You meet a lot of people who gas up your work and your thoughts but they never really absorb it enough to try to implement it or see what it would be like if they tried to think what you thought and apply it to their lives.
So I have a huge affinity to Nick Fed from a spiritual standpoint. When we were like oh we can't do this we need someone else it was a no brainer he literally just messaged me that day like "been thinking a lot about gratitude and sldgkjsdlfkjsdlf" and it was like oh man this dude is doing the work this is so dope Like by the way we have 35 fucking videos and we kind of know what we want do you want to hop on a call? I remember he sent me all of these layouts and I remember I showed them to you because I was willing to work with him to do whatever and you were like “these are cool - but this isn’t really what we wanted” which like shoutout to you for doing that because I was totally ready - we were in such an organic pivot phase where it was like “OHH maybe this is it!” and you fought for the initial vision which is dope.
I think like full transparency from the jump like jey man if this isn’t going to work out let’s just figure it out now and no hard feelings we’ll do something together in the future. It’s all love this has nothing to do with ego.
And he was like “you know what I’m going to try” and then in like two hours he was like “here’s a snippet” and it was fucking perfect you know what I mean? And it was like “oh yeah dude - keep doing it.” He crushed it!
JJ: Yeah he crushed it! And very much like he honestly was the perfect collaborator because it was literally like "do the shit that we can't do and also just listen to our crazy bat shit ideas" and he totally did both of those things and killed it and added his own flare and expertise to it and brought such good energy to the project. The biggest of all props to Nick Fed for putting this together and good for You (Audley) for getting him (Nick) to be a part of the project. Such good energy to add to this project.