Olivier Lescot has created yet another intricate world in an animation for Christian Rich’s new music video Shibuya (Ghost II). After creating over two and a half minutes of psychedelic visuals for French producer and DJ Breakbot last year, the Blinkink director is back at it again, partnering with Blinkink’s Parisien partners Eddy to produce a manga-inspired world.
The idea for the 80s-inspired manga universe first came about when American producer and DJ Christian Rich “had some awesome ideas for characters and stories” explains Olivier. “They liked my previous work and so we started developing this music video.” After multiple discussions about the short’s protagonist, Olivier got to work on the character design. “We wanted to create something kickass and gritty, with moments of intense animation and some contemplative sequences.”
And as a result, the narrative of Olivier’s latest animation evolves with the song. As the story unfolds before our very eyes, smooth transitions hook the viewer’s attention while dazzling neon colours and juxtaposing tempos hold the engagement throughout the two-and-a-half minute long animation. “The sound is really strong and we needed visuals to match that,” adds the animator on the matter.
Once the character and background design defined the music video’s overall aesthetic, the design team went onto create the storyboard, which led to the animation. “We didn’t have that much time, so within the storyboard, we have to work out the killer moments and the key poses which would lead the story.”
Finishing the film by ascertaining the expertise of a live-action editor who perfected the film’s movement to work precisely in time with Christian’s music, the end result is an intricately rich animation showcasing many urban and rural scenes. “Christian really wanted to capture the feeling of the 80s animated cartoons that we used to watch as kids,” he says on the animation’s inspirations.
“Our other influences were Akira and Ghost in the Shell, but we wanted to create something that felt contemporary and futuristic based on those influences,” says Olivier on working on this new style of animation. Currently working on a short film whenever he has a moment to spare, it’s difficult to guess what this future development will look like. “I don’t like doing the same thing twice,” says Olivier on his ever-evolving practice. So continuing to push his techniques and aesthetic further into the unknown, we look forward to witnessing the animator’s next project and the imagery it beholds.
About the Author
Jyni joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in August 2018 after graduating from The Glasgow School of Art’s Communication Design degree. In March 2019 she became a staff writer and in June 2021, she was made associate editor.