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The Atlas Moth
“Your Calm Waters”
From the album “An Ache For The Distance”
Profound Lore Records
Directed By Ryan Oliver
Chicago band The Atlas Moth plays a style of doom-friendly metal that blows open any possible pigeonhole. This dark, impressionistic video directed by Ryan Oliver features candle-lit incantations and a burial at sea. Not for the faint of heart.
– watch the film –
– official selection –
– about the project –
I’m fortunate person for knowing and befriending Stavros Giannopoulos and for having the confidence from his band to have developed and directed this video.
Our crew shot on two separate days, two weeks apart if I remember correctly. The days were, as you may guess from the video, split up into terrestrial and underwater photography.
The chamber set was built in the bottom of a loading dock where there was a nearby drain for the ‘bottomless basin gag. A green screen was rigged at the entrance of the chamber and the top landing of the stairs was built with two interchangeable tops. The stunt top had a cutout that housed a makeshift water tank disguised as the basin, once our character dunks herself inside the video takes off.
The underwater photography was filmed at a local scuba shop’s indoor certification pool. We rented the pool for the day and lined the pool with specialty non-shedding, black fabric to make the walls disappear.
Aside from the actress, Catherine Dughi, (the only one not in a wet suit may I add) there was a large crew of us in the pool for 12 exhausting hours moving the shoot along. Camera was on scuba tanks while many of us, myself included, snorkeled the whole day while puppetering and constantly arranging pounds of dry ice to create fields of white, vaporous bubbles. Coming up to the surface to talk was often necessary, though we did have good exchanges with crude sign language underwater as well.
It was a thoroughly fantastic experience and I may never shoot anything quite as unique as this video.