by Doctor Science
Since my mind has been desperately distracted by the following fanvid, I am going to share it with you!
"Starships", by bironic. Music by Nicki Minaj. Lyrics may be NSFW; singing along loudly with them is *definitely* NSFW. And you may be tempted; I certainly am.
I'm working on a post about the Star Trek reboots, was reminded of this vid (which I saw when it first came out last summer), started re-watching, and just. can't. stop. It's partly the song, which is extremely catchy but also has at least 3 distinct moods: happy-bouncy, sense of wonder, and ludicrous speed. Bironic then matched each musical mood to clips from movies and TV shows to bring out all the ways I love the idea of space travel: with joy, with wonder, and with excitement.
What does this have to do with bouillon cubes? For me at least, fanvids are the most concentrated form of creative expression, because each clip comes from a much larger source work. To make a bouillon cube, you take out the water and (theoretically) leave the flavor behind, concentrating it. In a good fanvid, I feel as though the clips take out the time in the sources, leaving behind concentrated emotion. In this particular case, hundreds of hours of source gets boiled down to 3 1/2 minutes of vid -- bironic used 257 clips from 39 different movies or TV shows. I haven't seen absolutely all of her sources, but I *have* seen most of them and have strong feelings and associations with them.
For instance, at 1:50 in "Starships" Nicki Minaj is singing "if you want more" and the matching clip is Scotty talking to Captain Kirk. I immediately associate this with Kirk's habit of asking Scotty for "more power!" and "more speed!", while Scott has to explain that no, she can't do any more ... probably. And then there are a series of rapid clips showing others of my favorite engineers, giving just a bit "more" to get the job done. It's a lot of associations and the emotions that go with them, packed into just a few seconds.
Bironic described her process:
I made this vid in a week and a half at the end of April while working six-day weeks at my day job. That's how much time there was between when I first heard the song/got permission to submit it to Club Vivid, and when Club Vivid vids were due. Words cannot describe the scramble to get enough source—I only own about a third of the above—plus make all the clips, figure out the best aspect ratio, find a good vid structure, define constraints (e.g. only clips where people look happy/enthralled to be flying; only ships in space, not in atmosphere, except for launches/crashes), etc.The latter is particularly notable -- I figure she managed to get the percent white dudes down to about 50, which is one of the things I like to imagine about space travel -- that the heroes can have all kinds of faces.
Having done a bunch of vids before definitely made this one possible; it was like previous experience built up to allow me to do this one in the allotted time. I knew how to rip and encode and clip several different kinds of footage. I figured out how to deal with a Premiere letterboxing problem. I knew that like half the clips needed speed work. I knew how to export for DVD when it was done. All of that and more meant technical problems didn't defeat the project and I had a little more time to devote to things like making sure this wasn't an "all white guys, all the time" show.