Ed Boxall an artist/musician and dear old friend, recently asked if I’d be interested in making a video for a track on his upcoming “Wild Ones” album release.
Back in the (distant) day, Ed and I had a band called “Sunshine Head” and I have always loved his songwriting and art work, so it was a swift and simple ‘yes’.
The track he chose was titled “Dance Beneath A Diamond Sky”, the Bob Dylan reference immediately endeared me to it.
Ed was happy for me to have free rein to do whatever I wanted and after listening to the track a few times an idea presented itself.
I took some existing footage I had shot on a beautiful old Russian Helios 40 85mm lens in a nearby wood and a whole stack of illustrations Ed had sent me.
I had been planning on experimenting more with AI image generators after my initial experiments a year ago as much had evolved in the space. This seemed like the perfect project on which to play.
I fed both the footage and the drawings into the Deforum extension for Stable Diffusion, using prompts generated from Clip Interrogator. This produced some interesting shifting animations of the static footage and dreamlike hallucinations of Ed’s original drawings. I also generated some additional elements to layer into the video using variations on the song’s title as prompts.
Everything was blended together in After Effects and a grade applied to complete the look.
I wanted to make something that didn’t look like it had been generated by AI, something that was using it more as a tool to play with my original footage and Ed’s original drawings. Not only was it more satisfying to use these tools to create based on work done by our own hands but (for me at least) it dismissed a lot of the ethical hand wringing that rightfully accompanies a lot of things being produced by it.
We hope you like it.
See and order the “Wild Ones” book and Ed’s other work on his website www.edboxall.co.uk