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Exclusive Premiere: Hey Ocean! "If I Were A Ship" (Katie Nelson, dir.)

This playful, largely stop-motion clip has a fitting oceanic theme, but then goes deep for shadowplay, neon accents and lots more.

Katie Maren Nelson, director: "The team that worked on this piece consisted of only 4 people; Holly Thorstad, Mike P. Nelson, Emily Fritze and myself.  I knew from the start that I wanted to use different styles of animation and video to give a unique life to the video. Everything for the most part was pieced together with found objects that my team and I turned into something else. I used the bubble wrap to create the feeling of being under water and the mailing tubes to experiment with a process called strata stencil."

"The song “If I Were a Ship” has a very whimsical and tropical feel to it, which definitely inspired the visuals of the piece. The marimbas, shakers, and the occasional ocean sound effects were big cues and made me want to explore a quirky underwater world. In designing this world it was important not to restrict myself to conventional oceanic imagery. A grave yard of boom boxes fill the ocean floor. An oddly shaped “pentapus” swims about squirting ink."

"I also really wanted to incorporate the band in some way. Shooting them was out of the question as they were on tour. I was inspired by the big eyed children paintings of the 70’s and thought it would be cool to create the band into characters using this style. Using photographed elements, scanned textures, and a lot of animation tricks I was able to bring the band right into the video."

David Vertesi, Hey Ocean: "'If I Were A Ship' is a song full of story and imagery and we were thrilled to see that Katie Nelson captured it perfectly bringing it to life with her beautiful mixed media animation style. I feel like the best part for us was the surprise.  It took her a few months of painstaking work and it was totally worth the wait!  We watched the finished video together for the first time and flipped out!  We hope you enjoy it as much as we did."

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