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15th August 2019
Fantasy strip
Title of film: Brooke Candy, XXXTC feat. Charli XCX & Malibu Miitch
Director: Dejan Jovanovic & Luke Abby
Production Company: DE-YAN
Multidisciplinary creative studio DE-YAN, fronted by Dejan Jovanovic, crafts elegant artistic visions across design, branding, architecture, events and visuals. Their credits include breathtaking work for luxury brands Dior and Omega, and tech monoliths such as Google and Samsung. It’s their latest music video work for the ever-exemplary Brooke Candy that caught our attention, however, so we slid into their IG DM’s and got chatting with Dejan about the art and craft behind the studio’s stunning output.
Brooke Candy, XXXTC

You fell on to our radar with your incredible Brooke Candy music video (more on that later) so could you give us some background and context as to who / what De-Yan studio is?

DE-YAN is a multidisciplinary design studio, founded by me (Dejan Jovanovic) in 2014, with studios now located in both the US and Europe. Our areas of expertise have evolved over time and include creative concepting, experiential and architectural design, motion, graphic and interactive design within luxury, fashion, living and, most recently, music. Our design and art direction has won the studio a number of awards notably including ADC, One Show and Cannes Lions.

Given our studio’s multidisciplinary nature, our client partners really vary and include brands, artists and designers such as Louis Vuitton, Samsung, CFDA, Saks, Google, Omega, Tommy Hilfiger, Nike, Renzo Piano and many more.

CFDA 3D motion design

Your work spans design / animation / installation and more so could you tell us about your background and how you came into this creative field with such a breadth of different artistic skills.

I have a strong background in multidisciplinary design and started my career as an art director in a more traditional advertising setting. Beyond the conceptual portion, I always enjoyed executing things myself, however there often came times at traditional agencies where an external partner would be hired to execute ideas for us. After a while there came a point where I realized the best way for me to not only conceptualize and execute my ideas, but also really find opportunities to push creative/artistic limits was to start a studio of my own.

A Human experiential design

Tommy Hilfiger experiential design

A lot of your work exists within the fashion and luxury space – why do you think there is such a creative synergy between design and digital culture / creative technology?

Design within fashion and luxury has always inherently relied so heavily on artistic innovation and, generally speaking, the most innovation in today’s world is taking place in technology – that’s where we come in. Brands approach our studio when they are ready to experiment and create trends and experiences in a technologically-forward consumer landscape. With our studio’s 3 core disciplines (Architecture/Events, Graphic Design/Branding, and 3D Motion/CGI) we can approach any project with full creative freedom and without any boundaries – the studio team is super diverse and collaborative which allows us to approach projects from all sides to make the impossible, possible.

Samsung

Likewise you’ve worked with some leading tech companies – Google and Samsung to name two – how do these creative projects differ to working with fashion clients?

Working with fashion clients has allowed so many doors to open up for new opportunities that have challenged the studio to grow and continue to innovate. We love a challenge, so when we eventually caught the attention of these leading tech companies it was super exciting to infuse our fashion aesthetic and approach into their worlds. Similar to companies like Google and Samsung, we’re experimental at our core and see eye-to-eye with commercial brands who like to “think big.” We’ve developed great relationships with these brands because we always take every ask and over deliver with creative, innovative solutions that span across everything we do.

Samsung Unfold, Times Square

Brooke Candy feat. Charli XCX & Maliibu Miitch  – how did this incredible collaboration come about? Were you contacted by Brooke directly?

We’ve always been fans of Brooke and identity with her as an artist because she’s the perfect example of someone open to trying basically anything. So when she approached me and a good friend of ours, Luke Abby, to create a cool video for her new track, it was a no brainer!

How do you go about concepting and prepping a treatment for this sort of visual work? Were a lot of the ideas for style and tone laid out in advance or was the process more iterative and organic, evolving as you went?

We treated this process really collaboratively as we would with any major fashion brand, and started with a clean slate.

We first dove deep into Brooke’s song and lyrics to understand what she felt was most important to visually convey, then put together a handful of innovative concepts that could help set her video apart from everything else out there right now.

Brooke is close friends with Luke Abby which helped establish a strong relationship and working dynamic for us, and made the process much more natural and authentic from start to finish. Luke is a friend of mine and very close with Brooke. We’re always so excited to see what he’s up to, so it was great to collaborate again. He brought such a great energy on set so it was super fun to work with him.

Brooke Candy XXXTC

What were the most demanding creative and technical elements to complete within the piece?

While CGI development can be one of the most challenging aspects of a project like this, it’s really our bread and butter and what we were most excited about when approaching this video in particular.

All of the creative for this video was done by our studio team which is made up of about 20 creatives across disciplines, and on this video in particular we had a team of about 10 working on everything from production and art direction to 3D motion, video edit, custom typography design, album art, AR filters, merchandise product design and more.

 

Which tracks are currently dominating your playlist?

 When in doubt, Frank Ocean. But I’m also very into some up-and-coming artists like Lil Nas X and Merlot. Billie Eilish has definitely exceeded “up-and-coming” status, but I’m a big fan of hers as well.

Credits

Brooke Candy, XXXTC

Production & Creative Studio: DE-YAN
Directed by: Dejan Jovanovic & Luke Abby

Styling: Simon Rasmussen
Hair: Charlie Le Mindu
Make Up: Selena Ruiz
DOP: Scott Keenan