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Work / Animation

Parallel Teeth’s cheery world of egg eyes, animated cut-outs and weird illustrated characters

New Zealand-born, London-based director Robert Wallace, AKA Parallel Teeth, has directed the animated music video for Auckland musician Merk’s song I’m Easy, premiered here on It’s Nice That. Starring an animated 2D cut-out version of Merk with fried-egg eyes, surrounded by bizarre characters illustrated by Robert and Caitlin McCarthy, the video has a lo-fi and nostalgic feel ideal for the track.

“Merk was open to the direction as long as it was super colourful and fun, but underneath all that happy stuff a little bit melancholic,” explains Robert. “The two main inspirations were Merk’s paper cut-out album cover and photos of him in his iconic egg glasses. Personally I wanted it to be bold, loose and playful.”

The singer was shot in his studio in New Zealand, and the footage was then cut out and coloured frame by frame, to give it a “rough and energetic” look. The illustrated clan of creatures were added adhoc to each frame in Photoshop, without a strict storyboard, in order “to capture the carefree naivety of early ideas before they were overthought,” says Robert, and allow the video’s narrative to evolve organically.

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk

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Parallel Teeth: I’m Easy video for Merk