Bones + Grit
Guidelines to shooting a low-budget music video:
- Plan every aspect of production.
- Be prepared to adapt when your carefully laid plans go careening off the rails. Hard.
- Cast human actors only.
While the concept for the music video for “Bones,” by Saie Saie revolved around themes of exploration and discovery in unfamiliar territory, making director Seth’s vision a reality became its own journey that would test our small crew’s determination, skill, and patience. We were quickly forced to scrap our three day shooting schedule at Dumont Dunes due to safety concerns for our star horse actor, Hinto, so sleep was scarce and tensions high.
Thump. The dull sound of my water bottle falling off the top of our rented RV jolted me from my restless sleep. I extracted myself from between the AC unit and skylight and fumbled for my phone in the dark, scrambling in a moment of “This is not my bed,” disorientation. 1:30 AM. Time to go back to work.
After retrieving my water bottle from our makeshift pen that had zero chance of stopping a spooked 1,000 pound animal, I climbed into the RV to find Tim & Ty’s Solder Shop in full swing. I downed a five-hour energy and joined the operation, splicing and taping LED wires to prep for soldering. My fingers found a rhythm as fatigue grudgingly gave way to caffeine and the next few hours passed in a blur, until a dark blue hue in the sky signaled the coming dawn.
As our beleaguered crew prepared for the final morning of shooting we were held upright by the knowledge that we would soon leave this harsh otherworldly landscape, with or without a music video. Our tiny camp occupied the barren Mojave expanse for just two days, though at times I thought we might never escape. Since arriving we had rescued buried horse trailers, built the majority of our props and costumes, and coaxed a horse into riding in the sand. In short, we had come too far to fail.
Fortunately, this is what we're used to and the product is something we're super fond of: