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31st October 2013
Wheel of life
Title of film: Wheel
Director: Carl Addy
Production Company: Mill+
Mill+ director Carl Addy's stunning first music video for London-based duo, We Are Shining, is a blow-your-socks-off montage of stills and footage made into hundreds of gif sequences

Let’s start at the beginning. Where did you train, how did you get into vfx and what led you to directing your first music video?

I kind of stumbled into direction and animation. I studied design/illustration and advertising. After having my own design shop I found clients were asking me for treatments on commercials… cut to a few years later… and I am mostly working on broadcast commercials, title sequences and web content. The music video was a natural transition where it was just about waiting for the right opportunity and fit for my brand of crazy.

Did you collaborate closely with the band We Are Shining or did they leave you to it creatively?

The band was very hands on, everything was collaborative. Essentially we wanted to channel their influences but through a visual filter much like their music, which is heavily sampled and re-appropriated.

It must have taken forever to create Wheel – was it late nights sleeping on the sofa while you were editing it together? Did you have a team of pixies helping you or was it long nights all alone?

Yeah it took a while. It was a real exercise in perseverance, to be able to keep looking at the layers of complexity with fresh eyes. We had a small team of Mill+ animators, editors, designers and illustrators all in the hot tub.

How did you go about sourcing all the stock footage and what was behind your selection decisions – was it an instinctive process that you felt you could easily manipulate the image or did you choose images to fit with the feel of the music?

It started with the band supplying stills and footage that they felt were influential to them. Then we built a story around it and forced ourselves to fill in the blanks with elements that felt true to their sound and the larger narrative.

What were the main challenges of producing this film?

Trying to keep it visceral and not over polished… and the hours.

Credits

We are Shining, Wheel

Director: Carl Addy

Production company: Mill+

Executive Producer: Luke Colson

Designer: Alexandra T. Pelham

After Effects Artists: Kwok Lam, Matt Whitewood, Markus Nogueira Rosen

2D Artist: Bob Granger

Editor: William Barnett

Colourist: Houmam Abdallah