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Anthony Mandler 
Music video director case study
About 
Antony Mandler is and American film director, music video 
director, television commercial director and photographer. 
He was born on April 18,1973 and he has mostly collaborated 
with popular artist Rihanna as a music video director, 
creating 16 music videos together total but has also created 
music videos for artists such as Jay-Z, Beyoncé, Eminem, 
Usher, Shakira, Taylor Swift, Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, 50 
Cent, Ne-Yo, Nicki Minaj, Drake, Snoop Dogg, Cheryl Cole, 
M.I.A., Mary J Blige, fun. and Lana Del Rey. So it is evident 
that this is a hugely successful music video director with 
experience working with so many famous artists.
Some of his videos 
Uses scenery a lot in this video, 
expansion of time, low key 
lighting and black and white 
filters. He also uses a lot of 
imagery such as the horse on the 
plains, the fire and the rewinding 
of the footage fixing the house. 
He also uses bright light sources 
to link lyrics and visuals when the 
words ‘shine bright begin’. 
(http://www.youtube.com/watch? 
v=lWA2pjMjpBs) 
Diamonds, Holy grail and find your love 
Fairly performance based with loads of 
attention to mise-en-scene. Uses editing to 
switch between Jay Z and Timberlake with 
interesting transitions. Lighting is mostly 
low key which is consistent with 
Diamonds- Rihanna. Dark colours and 
powerful light sources along with dancers 
make the video conceptualised as well as 
performance based. Expansion of time is 
also used a couple of times like in 
diamonds, but in this to relate to drug use. 
(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AIdX 
isPqHc) 
This is the first of the three videos I 
chose to sample that has text in it, 
which supports conceptualisation, 
but in this context introduces the 
issue in the story. It features links 
between lyrics and visuals like in 
Goodwin's theory which is also 
present in the other two videos. 
This video however features high 
key lighting because of the club 
settings and daylight. 
(http://www.youtube.com/watch? 
v=Xyv4Bjja8yc)
Style of the director 
Recurring trends in the videos of Anthony Mandler include the use of lyrical and visual links, 
musical and visual links, low key lighting, close up conceptualised images, the expansion of time 
and also carefully constructed mise-en-scene. As for type of videos Anthony Mandler produces, 
they are mainly performance based, focusing on the artists representation and advertising them, 
however this is usually accompanied by a conceptual underlining which reflects the subject of 
the song. 
Non-recurring things that I think are very interesting include the use of text in the 
opening of the video ‘Find your love – Drake’ which features an interesting philosophical 
statement that is used to engage the viewer. Secondly he uses low key lighting in one of the 
videos which I think isn’t as regularly used in music videos of late as most go for the mysterious 
high contrast colour scheme of lighting. 
Finally I think that the use of short clips of video to connote meaning which feature 
heavily in the music videos of Anthony Mandler are extremely interesting as they turn them 
from absolutely performance based videos to having these underlining meanings. He does this 
in all three using for example a video of wild horses in Diamonds, a use of dancers under sheets 
in Holly grail and grafitti saying ‘Guilty till dead’ in Find your love. They all add meaning to the 
songs the artist are singing.
How I will apply features of his style 
The style of the videos that Anothony Mandler makes is interesting and is clearly very popular as 
he is a famous director that has worked with many famous artists. So clearly he is doing 
something right, however his videos seem to be very supportive of the Male Gaze theory (1975) 
by Laura Mulvey, with their objectification of the females in the videos , especially in ‘Find your 
love’. This is something I see as a lazy way of drawing attention that most artists use to stay 
popular with male audiences, but even if I was prepared to create voyeuristic videos of women 
to draw interest to my video, I wouldn’t do that in the video I am aiming to create as it isn’t 
relevant to the song. 
I would also not be able to use the low key lighting that he uses frequently as my 
video will have to reflect the cheery mood of the song and lighting such as this isn’t suitable for 
this aim. I will aim to reflect what he did in ‘Find your love’ with the high key lighting to introduce 
happiness, although my video won’t contain any of the dark themes he has in his. 
Something of his I will use is the linking between lyrics and visuals he likes doing, 
supportive of Goodwins theory of uses and gratification, which I think is relevant to my video as 
the lyrics in ‘Mr Blue Sky’ are perfect to target this. Accompanying this will be the huge amount 
of metaphorical imagery that Mandler uses in his videos as I think ‘Mr Blue Sky’ can be given no 
end of complex underlining meaning just like the ones in Mandler’s videos.

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Anthony mandler post

  • 1. Anthony Mandler Music video director case study
  • 2. About Antony Mandler is and American film director, music video director, television commercial director and photographer. He was born on April 18,1973 and he has mostly collaborated with popular artist Rihanna as a music video director, creating 16 music videos together total but has also created music videos for artists such as Jay-Z, Beyoncé, Eminem, Usher, Shakira, Taylor Swift, Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, 50 Cent, Ne-Yo, Nicki Minaj, Drake, Snoop Dogg, Cheryl Cole, M.I.A., Mary J Blige, fun. and Lana Del Rey. So it is evident that this is a hugely successful music video director with experience working with so many famous artists.
  • 3. Some of his videos Uses scenery a lot in this video, expansion of time, low key lighting and black and white filters. He also uses a lot of imagery such as the horse on the plains, the fire and the rewinding of the footage fixing the house. He also uses bright light sources to link lyrics and visuals when the words ‘shine bright begin’. (http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=lWA2pjMjpBs) Diamonds, Holy grail and find your love Fairly performance based with loads of attention to mise-en-scene. Uses editing to switch between Jay Z and Timberlake with interesting transitions. Lighting is mostly low key which is consistent with Diamonds- Rihanna. Dark colours and powerful light sources along with dancers make the video conceptualised as well as performance based. Expansion of time is also used a couple of times like in diamonds, but in this to relate to drug use. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AIdX isPqHc) This is the first of the three videos I chose to sample that has text in it, which supports conceptualisation, but in this context introduces the issue in the story. It features links between lyrics and visuals like in Goodwin's theory which is also present in the other two videos. This video however features high key lighting because of the club settings and daylight. (http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=Xyv4Bjja8yc)
  • 4. Style of the director Recurring trends in the videos of Anthony Mandler include the use of lyrical and visual links, musical and visual links, low key lighting, close up conceptualised images, the expansion of time and also carefully constructed mise-en-scene. As for type of videos Anthony Mandler produces, they are mainly performance based, focusing on the artists representation and advertising them, however this is usually accompanied by a conceptual underlining which reflects the subject of the song. Non-recurring things that I think are very interesting include the use of text in the opening of the video ‘Find your love – Drake’ which features an interesting philosophical statement that is used to engage the viewer. Secondly he uses low key lighting in one of the videos which I think isn’t as regularly used in music videos of late as most go for the mysterious high contrast colour scheme of lighting. Finally I think that the use of short clips of video to connote meaning which feature heavily in the music videos of Anthony Mandler are extremely interesting as they turn them from absolutely performance based videos to having these underlining meanings. He does this in all three using for example a video of wild horses in Diamonds, a use of dancers under sheets in Holly grail and grafitti saying ‘Guilty till dead’ in Find your love. They all add meaning to the songs the artist are singing.
  • 5. How I will apply features of his style The style of the videos that Anothony Mandler makes is interesting and is clearly very popular as he is a famous director that has worked with many famous artists. So clearly he is doing something right, however his videos seem to be very supportive of the Male Gaze theory (1975) by Laura Mulvey, with their objectification of the females in the videos , especially in ‘Find your love’. This is something I see as a lazy way of drawing attention that most artists use to stay popular with male audiences, but even if I was prepared to create voyeuristic videos of women to draw interest to my video, I wouldn’t do that in the video I am aiming to create as it isn’t relevant to the song. I would also not be able to use the low key lighting that he uses frequently as my video will have to reflect the cheery mood of the song and lighting such as this isn’t suitable for this aim. I will aim to reflect what he did in ‘Find your love’ with the high key lighting to introduce happiness, although my video won’t contain any of the dark themes he has in his. Something of his I will use is the linking between lyrics and visuals he likes doing, supportive of Goodwins theory of uses and gratification, which I think is relevant to my video as the lyrics in ‘Mr Blue Sky’ are perfect to target this. Accompanying this will be the huge amount of metaphorical imagery that Mandler uses in his videos as I think ‘Mr Blue Sky’ can be given no end of complex underlining meaning just like the ones in Mandler’s videos.