Visual storyteller specializing in music and dance media. Based in Seattle, serving the world.
- “Classic” by Pacific Ballroom Dance
- “NPR” by Can’t Stop Won’t Stop – Puppet Rap!
- “Grief” – A Dance Short Film
- “Run Away” – A Dance Short Film
- TV ads for Liberty Coin & Currency
- Republic Services Roosevelt: Generating Power from Refuse
- Blackmagic 4K tests: battery life, data and record time
- Timelapse for Buzzfeed
- Roxanne – Tango Short Film
- “Sharper Tool; Bigger Weapon” – The RA Scion redux
- Three web Spots for Familyshare.com
- Garrett Gibbons Demo Reel 2013
- Ayron Jones & The Way – Feedin’ From the Devil’s Hands
- You don’t know what the word “Storyboard” means, do you?
- Dance choreography films for Katie Baillie
Category Archives: Video
If you ever have an opportunity to make a rap video starring custom puppets, I hope you take that opportunity.
When Can’t Stop Won’t Stop released their LP “Wildebeest” in 2013, I pinged the group about doing a music video for a song on the album. They were 100% interested, and the plan was to film something when I was next in Los Angeles. Over the next two years it felt that my work in L.A. either didn’t line up with times when they were in town or I didn’t have time to tag on an extra project while down in California.
Eventually a window aligned when the group was sort of available at the same time that I was sort of available, but during that week, none of the vocalists would be in the same city – they were scattered all over the USA. My first though: make an animated music video! My second thought: use puppets! The band was down with the idea, so I began putting out feelers for excellent puppeteers.
My brother Morgan helped me find Randall McNair of Widgets, Inc., who is basically a reincarnation of Jim Henson. He and his wife Lucy proved to be amazing people to work with. They brought a lot of creative juice to the mix and were total professionals in every way. They have a fair amount of film experience, as well as tons of live theater experience, and they were patient with the rest of us while we worked through the learning curve of filming puppets in action.
Shooting the “NPR” video today and tomorrow with the homie @garrettgibbons – Is my nose really that green tho?! A photo posted by CANT STOP WONT STOP (@cswsmusic) on
We began filming in Utah, near where Randall and Lucy live (they had just come back from a few weeks working on a show in Alaska). Filming was relatively straightforward once I started figuring out how to film a puppet in action. The train footage was hilarious to film because people kept walking through the aisle, and they had to step over Randy and Lucy, who were laying in the aisle with their arms raised between the seats to operate the puppets. One security guard just casually stepped over them without batting an eyelid. I guess they see far weirder things on those trains.
We filmed the first verse in front of David Eff’s pink truck that sells frozen bananas, and put out a call to fans to invite them to come and dance it up. Here’s a behind-the-scenes video clip of Randy and Lucy in action, obviously rapping along with nearly every word from the song:
Another boring day at the office. @cswsmusic @davideff #film #smallhd #provo #musicvideo #puppet #hiphop #sesamestreet @widgetsinc A video posted by Garrett Gibbons (@garrettgibbons) on
My favorite setup was the recording studio (June Audio Recording Studios in Provo, Utah), which was a shot I had previsualized early in the creative process, and was thrilled to see the footage turn out almost exactly as I had originally envisioned. Normally, during the development process things change and evolve, and the process is a journey that leads somewhere I hadn’t initially planned. When this happens, though, and the strong initial vision is brought to fruition without mitigation, it feels great.
#Repost @cswsmusic with @repostapp. ・・・ Gee, it feels surreal. Handheld Hawkins bedeviling the mic. #overgram #notsorry @smallhd #juneaudio A photo posted by Garrett Gibbons (@garrettgibbons) on
The Mercedes SLK 500 was a blast to work with, as well. David Eff found this car and its owner at a local car show a few weeks before production began. He wasn’t entirely sure what he was committing to, but there’s something special about being able to turn to an elderly gentleman and say, “Sir, can we have this puppet drive your car?”
Never fear! Our puppet rap video has a Benz and gold chains. A photo posted by Garrett Gibbons (@garrettgibbons) on
We filmed the green screen footage in a park, using one pink bike that I bought from a thrift store for $5 the morning we filmed it. I wanted to harness the cheesy chroma key composite feel of early-90s Sesame Street, and I feel like it turned out just right.
All in all, this project was a blast to work on. Can’t Stop Won’t Stop have a huge amount of energy; I hope to be able to work with them and the McNairs in the future! Enjoy the video!
“Run Away” is a short film based around the dance known as Rumba, performed in the International Latin Ballroom style. It is part of my not-for-profit Dance Short Films project.
The creation of this short film began when I heard “Don’t,” a beautiful and haunting piece of music by Camila Recchio. I immediately asked her for permission to use it for a dance piece, then began talking to dancers. Natalya and Umario ended up finding inspiration in the song, and after I gave them a few general story beats and concepts and images that I wanted to include, they choreographed the movement and developed the story between the characters.
“Run Away” has many themes, which may mean different things to different people at different times. To me right now, it’s about the death of a relationship. It shows the tragedy of a once-thriving friendship that is now dead at the core. In many ways, this short film deals with similar themes and visual motifs as my short film “Time Withers” (2011) (choreographed by Elisha Thompson), but while that film ends on a hopeful and inspiring note, this one is deeply tragic.
- Directed, Filmed & Edited by Garrett Wesley Gibbons
- Performance & Choreography by Natalya Zrazhevskaya & Umario Diallo
- Music: “Don’t” by Camila Recchio (Produced by EOM & Andrew Savoie). Used by permission, All rights reserved
- Production Assistants: Daniel Suchman & Race Newkirk
- Filmed on location at Blakely Harbor on Bainbridge Island, Washington
I filmed this entirely in 4K on the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K (some shots in ProRes 422 and others in CinemaDNG raw for a little more dynamic range), using an assortment of Canon EF L-series lenses. The camera was often mounted on either a Kessler Crane KC-8 or a JAG35 shoulder rig. The SmallHD AC-7 SDI monitor was invaluable on this shoot, since its color rendition and brightness outdoors is far superior to the built-in display of the Blackmagic Production Camera.
Camera setup from yesterday’s @danceshortfilms shoot: Blackmagic 4K, SmallHD AC-7 monitor, Kessler Crane, Switronix V-mount battery pack. A photo posted by Garrett Gibbons (@garrettgibbons) on
The editing workflow involved first using Resolve to create 1080p proxy files (with a basic Rec 709 lut applied), which I used for editing. Once the edit was locked I exported a shot list that was used to conform the edit to the source media in Resolve, where I finished the coloring process and exported in 4K. The fade-in effects and a few final visual effects were then added in After Effects (the transitions were created using the Video Copilot plugin called Twitch), including a bit of extra sepia processing on the “happy past” clips (because I wasn’t entirely happy with the look I created for it in Resolve). The closing titles were also created in After Effects.
Here are two TV spots I filmed and edited, working under the direction of Mike Johnston at Bigger Picture in Seattle. The is Liberty Coin & Currency, based in Portland, Oregon. The campaign is based around pairs of people who are fundamentally opposed in some way or another, who agree that Liberty Coin & Currency is the place for coins and gold.
The Presidents spot was a lot of fun. Besides two great actors and some fun period costumes, the hair and makeup was amazing. These two men completely transformed for this part.
The Twins spot is based around a classic rivalry between two colleges: the Oregon State University Beavers and the University of Oregon Ducks. The twins were each played by the same actor, and this was a challenging spot to nail down timing on because of the banter involved.
I have recently spent some time with Bullseye Creative, an ad agency in Seattle, working to produce some internal and promotional media for a few facilities run by Republic Services, a national waste-management company. This facility in Roosevelt, WA is fascinating: while essentially a landfill, they capture the methane gas produced by the waste and produce over 20 MW of energy, which powers most of the region and has an excess that is sent to California.
The facility is beautiful and looks fairly pristine, and is as clean and green as waste management comes. My favorite aspect: rather than use poison or guns to control their seagull population, they have an on-site falconer. More to come as additional pieces are finished!
Buzzfeed used one of my timelapses for their latest YouTube video, “The Science of Being a Teenager.” My clip starts around 0:35 and is also the final shot. They made a great video, check it out!
I recently had the pleasure of filming this short dance film with Natasha and Umario for DanceShortFilms.com. We filmed in one of the oldest buildings in Seattle, located in Belltown.
Just for fun, I made a reverse version. It was fascinating for me to watch so I uploaded it as well!
I was asked to make three very different web spots for Familyshare.com, all during the period of about one month. The budgets were decent but the turnaround time was extremely fast, so it was an interesting challenge to get all of these out the door within such a short timeframe.
The first spot is essentially a short film, meant to be a non-cliche, unconventional Christmas message that could be shared during the holidays. It was only six days from pitching the treatment to finalizing the edit. During that time I found the location, auditioned and hired actors, hired a wood carver to make some custom pieces for the story, rented the other props, and began pre-producing a second web spot for Familyshare.com.
Based on “The Street” by Allan Seager (published in Vanity Fair in 1934), but often misattributed to Harry Buschman and others, here is “The Window”:
It’s been a while since I’ve updated my demo reel. Maybe I was just waiting for the right musical inspiration? This one is long – just over four minutes – but I also made a 90-second sizzle reel for those with less interest or shorter attention spans. Thanks for watching! It’s been an amazing last few years.
Here’s the full-length version, set to “On Saturnalia Eve” by RA Scion (feat. Blake Lewis):
Also, the 90-second version, set to “Woodwalker” by RA Scion (feat. Mark Shirtz):
Here’s the latest music video I’ve directed, “Feedin’ From the Devil’s Hands” by Ayron Jones and The Way. This group was awesome to work with, and I’m also especially grateful for the other Seattle-based musicians and performers (including Sir Mix-a-Lot, Grynch, Davin Stedman from Staxx Brothers and Kitty Kitty Bang Bang) for being involved.
I highly recommend checking out some of their other work, including this bluesy jam, “Baptized in Muddy Waters,” produced by the excellent Session Seven Media in Seattle. Ayron Jones & the Way will be playing at Bumbershoot 2013, and their full-length album will be released this Fall.
Dancer, teacher and choreographer Katie Baillie hired me to direct, film and edit two of her pieces of choreography. She took care of the dancers and costuming; I picked the set, lighting, and the film-related aspects. The resulting two pieces are very different from each other, but showcase her diversity as a choreographer.
I primarily used a Canon 5D mkiii for these shoots, supported by an 8′ Kessler Crane, which was a lot of fun to haul out into the field. Thankfully, Luke Wesson helped me tote gear before he took behind-the-scenes photos.