Elementary Kinship

Atmospheric Music Video Harnesses the Elements for French Musician, Colleen’s Latest Single

I’m Kin, the latest single from multi-instrumentalist Colleen aka Cecile Shott is a haunting musical journey signposted by literary and mythological references steeped in allegory. It’s certainly feels fitting that the video, directed by Christophe Thockler, is itself a standalone piece of conceptual art.

“Considering that Colleen’s music is electronic but made with real and ancient instruments, I thought it would be interesting to express this dichotomy and work with organic materials and, at the same time, create a very numeric piece of work with a complex montage and video interferences like, for example, chromatic aberrations,” said Christophe.

The video is an abstract exploration of elemental materials which dovetails beautifully with Colleen’s melancholic vocals. Using the lyrics as an inspiration, sparks fly, ice melts and nature itself begins to bleed. Christophe uses a combination of stop motion and video techniques to create a dynamic visual palette. It can be a painstaking process, as Christophe works alone, covering everything from photography to post production, but the results are definitely worth it.

We were eager to find out more.

The Plus: How did you come to work with Colleen?
Christophe Thockler:
I must say I did not know her until she saw some of my videos and decided to contact me to talk about a possible collaboration. I immediately fell in love with her amazing beautiful music and her universe. Then we started talking about ideas for a music video.

TP: What part of the video are you most pleased with?
It may sound a bit cliché, but I am pleased with the whole video. I would probably not say this for all of my other videos, but the challenge here was to use all these different materials and still create something homogeneous, and I think that the whole is quite coherent.
If I had to choose, maybe it would be the bleeding flowers sequences; they metaphorically fit the lyrics so well, and this mix of yellow and red looks really nice. I like the idea that these images embody life and death at the same time.

TP: You work in lots of different fields for diverse clients, is juggling those a challenge?
I really love this. I love the idea of working on a very artistic music video, then, the next day designing web applications for accountants or web artwork for corporate companies. It’s challenging, but at the same time very motivating, you never get tired of what you are doing and you meet a lot of different people.

TP: What’s on your playlist at the minute?
Right now, I am in the middle of the beautiful, gloomy and moody trip hop song Strange Hours by Recoil. I listen to music almost all day, I really love music! If some of your readers like this style, they can explore a dark trip hop playlist I did here, it’s full of great tracks: http://www.deezer.com/playlist/13154412

TP: Are you working on any new projects currently?
I just finished a new music video for the electronica artist Michna, for Ghostly International. Both the label and Michna love the video, so, I’m pleased, and waiting patiently for the release date.

The making of…