Stolian Heights is an aspiring indie band based in London. Using the internet's power of connectivity, it sourced a music video for its latest single, only meeting their director in person for the first time when presenting their story to FITCH.
In a search for a director for their first music video, indie band Stolian Heights discovered a novel platform that brings together likeminded bands and creative artists. Radar Music Videos is designed for record labels, bands and artist managers to connect with film directors from all over the world who can produce content for them for a pre-agreed budget.
All the band needed to do was post their brief with available budget and the song on Radar’s website and wait for creative directors to pitch their treatments. After receiving 10 of these over the following three days, including some from USA and Australia, they selected their director, Stanisalava Buevich.
Says Stolian Heights, “We were immediately drawn to her idea and trusted her vision. And despite us both being based in London, we decided it was not necessary to meet in person prior to the shoot. Her previous work with short films and music videos gave us the confidence that she was the right person for us. So after a chat over Skype and several emails back and forth establishing details, and then working together on the edit via Dropbox, our video was done. The whole process from posting a brief on Radar to getting a complete video was just 2 weeks.”
Stanislava explains how she felt that they all connected straight away: ”The original treatment was pretty much exactly as the video turned out to be. The band liked it straight away, as they told me, and didn’t want to change anything to it.”
Stolian Heights were keen not to infringe on her creativity and were very open-minded from the outset. Though they had our own ideas, they recognised that working to a strict brief could limit the creativity of a director.
Stanislava wanted to play around with the purpose of make-up, exposing the idea that it’s used to both beautify and hide a person.
“I wanted to reverse it and use make-up as a tool that actually reveals something about the character – in this case her inner demons, and makes her not exactly ugly, but definitely not ‘pretty’. I had a brilliant make-up artist for this – Mika Swiatek – whom I found online and hadn’t met before the shooting day. The actress Sarine Sofair did an amazing job too. She’d never worn contact lenses before and was in a lot of pain, but she pushed through it and I think a simple little detail like that added a lot to the video.”
Watching the physical transformation of a person in the video is strangely compelling, and its subjective nature better allows the audience to engage emotionally. It’s a slightly unsettling, but emotive piece of work.
In the end, everyone involved in working on the video was really happy with the result.
Lead vocalist Katherine Somova and director Stanislava met in person for the first time when presenting their unusual project to FITCH as part of the ongoing series of PropaganDa talks to share the new ways of working successfully together on a creative project in today’s world.