After the Mean Buzz music video with Pairs, it seems I got the attention of a few local bands in Shanghai.
Round Eye, perhaps one of biggest stage presences in Shanghai and self-proclaimed "sexiest, hairiest and loudest band in China,"... that also serves as a public health warning for Asian women; got in touch about doing a video together.
The video also feature's an overly dramatic intro scene starring Chinese actress Wang Li, a friend of Jimmy the drummer. So this was my first time directing a Chinese star!
The song Suntan, is about the Chinese taboo of getting a sun tan. The concept sounded like a ton of fun, but their idea of shooting on a beach or in public for that matter wasn't going to be easy. We tried for a few locations but in the end we went for green-screen.
The intro and outro of the video we shot one evening at a friend of the band's home.
And then all of the green screen was shot in our studio over the course of one day. We had Chinese bodybuilders, girls dancing in bikini/facekini combos and the band dressed as women.
I have a love/hate relationship with green screen. I love the results and I'm always learning how to do it better. But the editing workload can be draining.
Rather than using photos or stock footage we decided to use animation for the back drop, this is where I met Alex Major of Sloppy Toons. He provided all the illustrations for the video. I've since worked with him on a few projects, he does all of his work with his finger and an iPad!
Editing took about a month on and off. I used Red Giant's Toonit to give the band a rotoscope effect (at about 50% opacity) to help blend them into the animated backdrop.
On it's release we got front page on YouKu, LeTV and Tudou.