Interview With Aussie Music Video Director Nick Kozakis
February 19, 2015
Australian Director, Nick Kozakis, stopped by Ditto Music to give you some handy tips and insights into what inspires him to create music videos for artists.
Hi Nick! Firstly, tell us a little about what you’ve worked on.
I’ve had the pleasure on working on many music videos, from independent talent all the way to ARIAA award winning artist. For the past year I’ve developed, co-directed and edited my debut feature film “Plague”.
What are some your favourite videos and/or directors?
I would say that some of my biggest influences would probably be David Fincher (how typical to choose the best). He came with a unique perspective into the music video world, rather than just opting to do performance based clips, he pushed the visual boundary and infused a heavy narrative to accompany the tracks lyrics. Take for example George Michael’s “Freedom” video clip, he was able to cinematographically guide that so beautifully, but also intermix George Michael’s heavy stance on stepping away from his “public persona” past.
Spike Jonze also cracked the code on making the coolest, and most original music videos. With not just engaging visuals, but by adding merriment and soul to what the audience watches.
Since you’ve obviously got a bit of experience in a wide array of music genres with your video clips, what advice would you give to artists who want to make a video?
How can they prepare before coming to someone like you?
The best thing to do is be 100% sure of what track you want to release. It has to be something that you’re prepared to listen to 50 -60 times on the shoot day during playback. Also patience is a virtue, make sure you are well organised and give enough time for development, there is nothing worse than rushing out a concept to fit it in to a release date.
What kind of budget would you recommend for a first video?
Make sure the budget can roughly cater for the idea that you might have in mind. There is no point low-balling the video clip if you’re expecting buildings to explode.
What are some things to be wary of?
Communication! It’s the biggest factor to a music video succeeding or failing. Make sure that everyone has the same frame of mind and shares the final vision during the developmental process.
How do they find people like you to make their video?
I’ve always thought that music videos are a great platform for collaboration between you and the creative team. It can be something special! Most of the time, I tend have a rough idea of what the artist is looking for, and from there we write emails back and forth till we are both locked into the same result.
What if they wanted to create their own video? Any tips for the DIY artist?
This is a hard one to attack; I can only express this from my own path that I’ve undertaken. If you are attempting to do it yourself, allow for the final product to not come up exactly the way you expected. The best thing that comes from that is experience and identifying what went wrong, from there you can perfect that craft over time till it becomes second nature.
On the other hand if you are the lucky few that nail it on the first go, now you have the option of two career paths.
Now for the ultimate question; what makes a great video?
In my opinion, there are many factors that can create spectacular videos, the only thing I can say is to try and incorporate an original narrative when best suited. Whether it be linear or completely abstract, it gives a lot of depth to the lyrics that you’ve worked so hard to communicate to the audience and your fan base. Whilst performance based clips are great, I always feel that using the lyrical content to accompany the true message of the song can really bring it to life.
Remember that you can setup your own Vevo page with Ditto Music to get your music video to the world! Head to www.dittomusic.com/channels/create to create your Vevo Channel now!
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