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How Are Music Videos Made

K
Kiera King

There are three main stages to making a music video: pre-production, production, and post-production. In pre-production, the artist and director come up with an idea and storyboard for the video. During production, the planned scenes are filmed. In post-production, the footage is edited together and promoted on social media. Music videos promote the artist's music and label. They are usually funded by the artist's record label, with more popular artists receiving higher budgets, though some cost-effective videos can still find success.

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Music Videos
How are Music Videos Made?
There are 3 stages to how music videos are made, these are; pre-production, production
and post production.
Pre-Production:
Pre-production is the all of the planning before the filming
starts. During the pre-production process, the production
team/director/the artist or band need to come up with an
idea for the music video. They should decide whether they
want the video to have a narrative, performance or concept
based so that they can start brainstorming ideas for the video.
Sometimes the artist or band already have an idea for the
music video when they recorded the song; therefore, they
then need to approach a director to help them visualise their
ideas. Once the idea for the video has been chosen they
should create a story board. Story-boards are a useful
resource for the pre-production process as they help to
visualise an idea and allow make the production process for
the music video a lot smoother. The story-board will also help
when it comes to editing the music video (post-production)
because it allows the editing team to see how the director
wanted the video to flow. After this, casting and locations
should be sorted out so that the production of the music video
can start.
How are Music Videos Made?
Production:
Production is the process of filming the footage for the video. During this all of the scenes and
planning from the pre-production will be captured. Lighting, framing and composition are
important factors that need to be considered during the production process in order to make
the music video aesthetically pleasing. Depending on the type and genre of the music video
different stages are followed in order to follow conventions. For live performance videos,
they'll sync footage with shots from various angles from a concert/gig. For a dance videos,
they will record takes of the choreographed dance scenes or the band lip-synching to the pre-
recorded track and then dub the synced up pre-recorded track over the footage. For animated
videos, they generate the animation either specifically synced to the pre-recorded track, or
completely independently.
How are Music Videos Made?
Post- Production:
Post- production occurs after all of the filming has
finished. The main part of post-production is editing the
footage. There are a lot of editing software available to
use, some more advanced than others. Some of the more
advanced software includes Final Cut Pro and Premier
Pro; this software is generally used for editing footage
for music video because it has more options and looks
more advance than a basic editing software such as
iMovie. When it comes to editing cuts generally occur to
match the pace and tone of the video, so that it works
well in conjunction with the song. Promotion/
advertising for the music video is also part of the post-
production process. Social media sites are a good tool to
use for promotion because it the sites are popular
amongst teenagers and young adults which are generally
the target audience for music videos. Using social media
to promote the video is also good because the videos can
be easily shared which will allow more people to see and
find out about it.
What is the purpose of music videos for
artists and companies who make them?
Artists make music videos because it is a good way to promote the singles from their albums.
It allows them to express themselves creatively which might help them to attract their target
audience. By promoting the music, it means that more people will find out about the band
which could result in them having more people who want to buy their music; this therefore
benefits both the artist and label that they are signed with.
Product placement is becoming more and more evident in mainstream music videos. A
brand/company will pay an artists/band to feature their product in their music video; this
helps to generate publicity for the company and allows the artist to make more money from
the video. An example of product placement are the range of products available from beats.
Their headphones and speakers feature in numerous pop and hip hop music videos. Product
placement has become so popular due to the global scale and success of music videos which
is due to websites such as YouTube.
Famous Music Video Directors:
David Fincher:
David Fincher is an American director and producer, notably for films, television series,
and music videos. For his music videos Fincher has worked with a variety of artists from
different music genres. Some of the artists that he was worked with include; Rick
Springfield, Madonna, Aerosmith, Michael Jackson, Foreigner, Billy Idol, The Motels, Nine
Inch Nails, Wire Train, Sting and George Michael. Fincher has won two Grammy Awards
for Best Music Video, for his work in "Love Is Strong" by The Rolling Stones in 1995 and
"Suit & Tie" by Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z in 2013. In addition to this he has been
awarded three MTV Video Music Awards for Best Director, being one of the most awarded
directors in the category. He also earned back-to-back MTV Video Music Awards for Best
Director in 1989 for "Express Yourself" and in 1990 for “Vogue" both by Madonna.

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How Are Music Videos Made

  • 2. How are Music Videos Made? There are 3 stages to how music videos are made, these are; pre-production, production and post production. Pre-Production: Pre-production is the all of the planning before the filming starts. During the pre-production process, the production team/director/the artist or band need to come up with an idea for the music video. They should decide whether they want the video to have a narrative, performance or concept based so that they can start brainstorming ideas for the video. Sometimes the artist or band already have an idea for the music video when they recorded the song; therefore, they then need to approach a director to help them visualise their ideas. Once the idea for the video has been chosen they should create a story board. Story-boards are a useful resource for the pre-production process as they help to visualise an idea and allow make the production process for the music video a lot smoother. The story-board will also help when it comes to editing the music video (post-production) because it allows the editing team to see how the director wanted the video to flow. After this, casting and locations should be sorted out so that the production of the music video can start.
  • 3. How are Music Videos Made? Production: Production is the process of filming the footage for the video. During this all of the scenes and planning from the pre-production will be captured. Lighting, framing and composition are important factors that need to be considered during the production process in order to make the music video aesthetically pleasing. Depending on the type and genre of the music video different stages are followed in order to follow conventions. For live performance videos, they'll sync footage with shots from various angles from a concert/gig. For a dance videos, they will record takes of the choreographed dance scenes or the band lip-synching to the pre- recorded track and then dub the synced up pre-recorded track over the footage. For animated videos, they generate the animation either specifically synced to the pre-recorded track, or completely independently.
  • 4. How are Music Videos Made? Post- Production: Post- production occurs after all of the filming has finished. The main part of post-production is editing the footage. There are a lot of editing software available to use, some more advanced than others. Some of the more advanced software includes Final Cut Pro and Premier Pro; this software is generally used for editing footage for music video because it has more options and looks more advance than a basic editing software such as iMovie. When it comes to editing cuts generally occur to match the pace and tone of the video, so that it works well in conjunction with the song. Promotion/ advertising for the music video is also part of the post- production process. Social media sites are a good tool to use for promotion because it the sites are popular amongst teenagers and young adults which are generally the target audience for music videos. Using social media to promote the video is also good because the videos can be easily shared which will allow more people to see and find out about it.
  • 5. What is the purpose of music videos for artists and companies who make them? Artists make music videos because it is a good way to promote the singles from their albums. It allows them to express themselves creatively which might help them to attract their target audience. By promoting the music, it means that more people will find out about the band which could result in them having more people who want to buy their music; this therefore benefits both the artist and label that they are signed with. Product placement is becoming more and more evident in mainstream music videos. A brand/company will pay an artists/band to feature their product in their music video; this helps to generate publicity for the company and allows the artist to make more money from the video. An example of product placement are the range of products available from beats. Their headphones and speakers feature in numerous pop and hip hop music videos. Product placement has become so popular due to the global scale and success of music videos which is due to websites such as YouTube.
  • 6. Famous Music Video Directors: David Fincher: David Fincher is an American director and producer, notably for films, television series, and music videos. For his music videos Fincher has worked with a variety of artists from different music genres. Some of the artists that he was worked with include; Rick Springfield, Madonna, Aerosmith, Michael Jackson, Foreigner, Billy Idol, The Motels, Nine Inch Nails, Wire Train, Sting and George Michael. Fincher has won two Grammy Awards for Best Music Video, for his work in "Love Is Strong" by The Rolling Stones in 1995 and "Suit & Tie" by Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z in 2013. In addition to this he has been awarded three MTV Video Music Awards for Best Director, being one of the most awarded directors in the category. He also earned back-to-back MTV Video Music Awards for Best Director in 1989 for "Express Yourself" and in 1990 for “Vogue" both by Madonna.
  • 7. Famous Music Video Directors: Director X: A protégé of Hype Williams,Director X has been noted for his high-budget, distinctive music videos for popular singles. In 2015, X founded his own production company, ‘Creative Soul’ in Toronto, Canada. Director X has made videos for a range of artists, including; including The Wanted, Usher, Fifth Harmony, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Korn, Nicki Minaj, Zayn, David Guetta, R. Kelly, Nelly Furtado, Justin Bieber, Drake, Little Mix, Rihanna and Iggy Azalea. Some of his most famous and well recognised music videos include, ‘Hotline Bling’ - Drake, ‘Fancy’ - Iggy Azalea ft Charlie XCX, ‘Yeah!’ - Usher and ‘Work’ - Rhianna ft Drake. Director X has won a handful of awards for his music videos such as MuchMusic Video Award in 2016 for Best Hip Hop Video for ‘Hotline Bling’, Juno Award in 2013 for Video of the Year for ‘hyfr (hell ya f*****g right)’ as well as BET Award for Video Director of the Year in 2016.
  • 8. Famous Music Video Directors: Mark Romanek: Romanek is an American filmmaker whose directing work includes feature films, television, music videos and commercials. After a few years writing screenplays, Mark Romanek decided to focus on music videos and signed on with Satellite Films. He has worked with many top- selling artists and bands from different genres of music. Mark Romanek was given his first Grammy Award for Best Short Form Video in 1996 for "Scream", by Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson. The video, cost $7 million to make, is noted as one of the most expensive ever made. He has also won two other Grammy Awards for Best Short Form Video which is more than any other director. One of his notable videos was for the Nine Inch Nails song "Closer". Its critical acclaim was only matched by its controversy. Other videos directed by Romanek that have received awards include the VMA winners "Free Your Mind" - En Vogue, "Rain" - Madonna, "Devil's Haircut" -Beck and "99 Problems" - Jay-Z. In 1997, Mark Romanek received the VMA, Video Vanguard Award for his contribution to the music video industry. The latest music video to be filmed by Romance was Taylor Swifts’ “Shake it Off’ in 2014.
  • 9. Famous Music Video Directors: Joseph Kahn: Joseph Kahn, is a Korean/American film and music video director. In 1999, he started his own production company with Chris Lee, ‘SuperMega Media’. Joseph Kahn has worked with a range of artists, all of different music genres. Some of these include; Snoop Dog, Backstreet Boys, Kelly Clarkson, Muse, Janet Jackson, Chris Brown, Blink 182, Eminem, Taylor Swift, Shakira, Black Eyed Peas, George Michael, Ke$ha, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry as well as many others. Kahn has collected multiple Music Video Production awards over his years as a director. In 2002, Kahn won his first Grammy for the music video of"Without Me” by Eminem which also won the MTV VMA's Best Video of the Year. He has won multiple MTV Video Music Awards with nominations for Best Video of the Year for Britney Spears "Toxic", the Pussycat Dolls "When I Grow Up", Britney Spears "Womanizer", and Eminem "Love the Way You Lie”. Recently in 2015,Joseph Kahn has directed 4 music videos for singles off of Taylor Swifts’ album ‘1989’. These videos won MTV's choices for Video of the Year, Best Pop Video, Best Female Video, and Best Collaboration. He also won the Grammy Award for Best Music Video of 2015 for Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood" ft. Kendrick Lamar.
  • 10. Finances:The funding for a music video usually comes from the record label that the artist or band is signed to. However if an artist is unsigned then they must find their own way to fund the for their music video. The amount that an artist/band has to spend of their music video depends on the popularity of both them and their record label. Popular and big record labels such as Sony Music Entertainment are more likely to give their artists a high budget when it comes to their music videos. One of the most expensive music videos, is ‘Scream’ by Michael and Janet Jackson which cost around $7 million to make. The video takes place on an elaborately-built spaceship and shows Michael and Janet having fun, while simultaneously being angry about how the media had been portraying them. Another expensive music video is ‘Express Yourself’ by Madonna. This cost $5 million to make; the video was inspired by the 1927 film ‘Metropolis’ and shows the singer dressing in a masculine fashion. Generally music videos that cost less to film are mostly performance based and don't have a concept or narrative; this means that less resources are needed to get sets and costumes. An example of a relatively cheap music video is ‘Praise You’ by Fatboy Slim, which was filmed for around $800. This cost covered a replacement boombox and food for the cast and crew. At the 1999 MTV Video Music Awards, was nominated for Best Dance Video and won Best Direction and Breakthrough Video. This proves that music videos don't need a large budget to be successful.