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August 20, 2014

How to make a Lumia music video in just a few hours

When portrait and music photographer David Norbut jumped on a train from Wilmington, Delaware to New York, he had no idea he was about to create a stunning music video using a Lumia 1020.

And when you look at the end result, Lascaux by the band Aircrafting, you would never guess that the project went from inspiration to completion in a single day. Impressed by the raw beauty of David’s video, we decided to have a word with him about how it all happened.

david norbut profile

“Jon (the singer/guitarist of Aircrafting) and I talked over beers of ideas, concepts and inspiration,” David explains. “I guess it was a perfect storm. I was testing out the Lumia for a Gryyo/Microsoft partnership right around the same time I was thinking more about moving pictures. So the discussion came up with the guys in Aircrafting and we just went for it.”

A video of moving photos

Next, “with nothing more than a feeling and the demo playing on our phones,” he found himself riding out of the city from Brooklyn to Queens to a sculpture garden in Roslyn, NY. The video was shot with just a few takes of each scene.

“We had a loose idea of how we wanted to do it, but I was relying more on the idea of making moving photographs then anything else. I wanted the video to have the same feel as my photography. That was the most important aspect for me,” David continues.

“I looked at every scene as a photograph first, naturally. Whether I was thinking about light and composition, or how I was going to move through a scene. I just shot it how I wanted to see it. I don’t even think it was a constant intention. I remember saying it aloud to the guys in the band right before shooting… And that was it.”

Don’t overthink it!

David shot the music video in a matter of hours in order to achieve a raw, organic feel. Though, in hindsight, he thinks he could’ve used a few more takes and shot more b-roll, you can see how the quick work translates into an intense yet dreamy and fluid atmosphere on the video.

lascaux lumia1020 video shots


But how did the Lumia 1020 fare? Though we‘ve seen the fantastic end result, we were still pleased to get the thumbs up from David, too: “Honestly, I had few challenges,” he says. “I would have preferred controlling the aperture, but after all it is a smartphone. It really worked well.”

Finally, David treated us to a few tips to aspiring Lumia music video directors. “Be confident in your vision. Work with down to earth musicians. Don’t spend too much time editing or overthinking things.”

Have you ever tried to make a music video on your Lumia? If so, please tell us all about it in the comments section. And if you haven’t, David’s tips are a good inspiration for getting started. We’d also love to know your thoughts on his Lascaux, so please type away down below!