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Interview with Niki Lindroth von Bahr, Director, Writer, and Animator of Stop Motion Short Film "Bath House"

In art as in life, when in the thick of something – a chain of, at times, loosely connected actions and consequences – it can be easy to miss “the point.” It’s often only in retrospect – the moment when one can contemplate, assessing and reassessing an event, whether mundane or abnormal – when one can discover meaning and a “point” to events in life as in art. When in the thick of something, things often feel commonplace, moments of actual weight sporadic, chaotic, and adrift, lost in the moment. Niki Lindroth von Bahr’s Bath House – a 15-minutes-long short film – perfectly captures these feelings of disorder and inconsequential consequence in the midst of the mundane and seemingly aimless. This mood is further accentuated in the film by a disquieting lack of a soundtrack, using dialogue only sparingly which perfectly accompanies Bahr’s incredibly lifelike puppets and animation, together harmonizing and bringing to life moments and an atmosphere that are rarely (if ever) captured on …
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Interview with Katrina Hood, Prop and Set Maker on "Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me)"

The little details are the ones that so often go unnoticed by the eyes of a viewer. Yet it is in those very details that the very spirit of art and where the essence beauty are found. Details guide the mood of the viewer, making them to feel and see everything that a piece of art has to offer – in film they often take the shape of costumes and sets and lighting, in paintings and portraits and sculptures they are often the smallest variations of brushstroke and color. The truth of this claim can often be found when the minute details are omitted from a piece of art – when a painting is devoid of color, a portrait of differentiation of subject and light, in a film of detailed costumes and sets – all of which amount to an overwhelming feeling of an unfinished work, or, at the very least, a sense that something quintessentially lacking, whether overtly missing or intangible in nailing down exactly what’s missing. For the production of the music video for American pop band Spark’s song Ed…

Interview with Roos Mattaar, Animator, Puppet Engineer, and Set Maker on "Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me)"

After Joseph Wallace was entrusted with the job of making the music video for the band Sparks’ song “Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me)” – a song off their new album “Hippopotamus” – the first person he looked to for help in bringing the project to life was UK-based Roos Mattar, who was originally brought on to craft the puppets. However, once Wallace and Mattaar came to realize the ambitious scope of the project in the sheer workload it would take to give justice to the complexity of the video’s many shots and sets, they assembled a team of talented animators, set fabricators, and prop makers, such as Aiden Whittam, Katrina Hood, Heather Colbert, and Mary Murphy, who, together with Wallace and Mattaar, worked around the clock to finish the project within a transient schedule of six weeks.


Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me), after premiering at the Paris International Animation Festival, went on to accrue an abundance of praise from individuals such as Aardman co-founder Peter Lord …

Interview with Aiden Whittam, Animator and Set Maker on "Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me)"

Bristol-based stop motion artisan Aiden Whittam, after recently graduating from the University of the West of Bristol, England, where he earned a Bachelors Degree in Animation, has hit the ground running in the industry, embarking on a few very exciting projects, one of which was Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me) – the music video for the band Spark’s hit song – on which he worked as both an animator and a set-maker.




Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me) – regarding which we published our first in a series of posts about the project last week, featuring our interview with the film’s director, Joseph Wallace – is nothing short of a treasure of the stop motion medium, having successively received a wealth of accolades and praises, perhaps the crown jewel of which coming from Sparks themselves, who hailed the video as, “Perhaps Sparks’ best video ever.”

Seated among his accrued stop motion work, Aiden has worked at Aardman on Nick Park’s upcoming caveman stop motion film, Early Man, wher…

Interview with Joseph Wallace, Director of Spark's "Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me)" Official Music Video

Neon feathers fly and a midnight chase ensues in a 1930s’ Paris imagined by BAFTA Cymru nominated director Joseph Wallace, traversing through streets, caf├ęs, and across rooftops sporting tilted chimneys and scaly shingles in the music video for legendary American pop-alternative band Sparks’ latest hit, “Edith Piaf (Said It Better Than Me),” praised by the band as, “Perhaps Sparks’ best video ever.”


The video is a gorgeous and somewhat psychedelic romp through the stylized 1930s’ Paris cityscape – “Piaf’s Paris,” as dubbed by Wallace – through which we follow stop motion versions of the Mael brothers, Ron and Russell, whom together comprise Sparks, as they follow a large, neon-colored bird – a sight that provides a stark contrast to the otherwise moody, muddy color palette of Wallace’s Paris, composing a beautiful and exciting ambiance of 3-and-a-half-plus minutes of pure cinematic bliss.

The world of the film was built primarily using cardboard, the backgrounds were painted panorama…