Optical illusion music video VFX

Director Abbie Stephens required numerous VFX shots for All We Are’s surreal music video ‘Keep Me Alive’. Optical illusions and scenes with missing elements were created using only editing, masking and rotoscoping, with no CGI’d elements.

For each shot that required elements to be cut out or missing, seperate plates for the foreground elements and background elements were filmed, so that they could be added over/under. Numerous plates were filmed to add additional elements and mask out others, with objects such as picture frames mounted on support clamps that were masked out and rotoscoped to match the shots. Scenes having camera movement required layers to be synced by time-matching, before being rotoscoped with animated masks. One of the more challenging shots required a wine glass to fill up with ’emptiness’ before spilling over itself, which required concentrated use of roto brushing and careful management of multiple layer masks.

Director – Abbie Stephens
Producer – Paz Parasmand
Director of Photography – Franklin Dow
James Kearsley – VFX Artist
Fiona Coveney – VFX Assistant
Editor – Nathan Green
Colourist – Houmam
Wizard Focus Puller – Will Hadley
DIT / Camera Assistant – Raf Curtis
Stylist – Coline Bach
Production Designer – Antonia Lowe
Hair & Make Up – Elaine Lynskey
Runner – Jonathan Baker
Runner – Tom Flower

Assistant Editor – Jamie O’Donnell
Executive Producer – Claire Stubbs
Video Commissioner – Natalia Maus
Editing at Cut & Run
Grade at Electric Theatre Collective
Graphics at JKStudios

Project Information

Director: Abbie Stephens
VFX: James Kearsley & Fiona Coveney
Producer: Paz Parasmand
Agency: Partizan

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Music video VFX, Optical illusions, Camera trickery, Live action


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