I had someone ask on instagram the other day ‘the feathers are cool, but do they mean anything?’
It has always been interesting to me when people ask about meaning and generally the questions is ‘what does it mean’ or ‘how did you do that’ or ‘where did you shoot that’ or ‘when did you do that’ all asked more than WHY?
At first I had a quaff at the question in the van with my buds from Towers and Trees, as we were driving from London, ON to Eau Claire, WI.
‘It’s metaphor!’ I said
‘Why ask the question!’
‘That’s such a silly question’
‘Figure it out,’ were all my answers at first.
I used to play another video I made for the song ‘The Country Where I Came From’ while I sang it at Younglife Camps and I would always get asked ‘What does it mean?’
I think there is a thing about art, and maybe a thing about video’s that I like when things are a bit abstract. It’s kind of like a fantasy where you can take things out of reality, and you are allowed to, and it’s almost encouraged. There is a part of making a video where you want it to be weird, to be visually appealing, and have a ‘wow’ moment or an ‘ah ha’ moment. And in music video’s you have way less time to build a reality that is very similar to real life, so most of the time you end up using a few visuals that are more metaphorical or representative, because it’s hard to wow the internet these days, and it’s pretty hard to build character and setting in less that 4 minutes with no dialogue or anything.
I think the goal of Blue Above The Green was to present a reality that is pretty universal – (hiking through the woods in the spring with a tinge of love in the air) but represent that in a metaphorical way.
Firstly - The feathers hold an idea of chance, and I think infatuation and love and relationship are represented well by them. They fall, and they rise and they swirl around. The wind affects them, and their own properties and shapes and size even without the winds affect their path from point A to point B.
Secondly – In this song and video, there is theme of ascension. The lyrics (‘looked down onto our toes’ the ‘up in the sky we saw the trestle overhead’ ‘up above the canopy of trees’) and certainly the title (Blue ABOVE The Green) combined with the images, present this idea of ascension. I think falling in love supports this, but I often think of it more as an ascension of love, and certainly this song presents it that way.
The images of the water falling, the feathers falling off the bridge, the scattered feathers, the shots upward as well as the 4:3 aspect ratio, were all intentional in presenting this idea that love is this acension, and a potential rise and fall, the way a mountain’s tree line rises and meets the blue of the sky. (below is my text conversation with Robin a couple days before about the treatment)
And I think in reality, this ascension of love and relationship is no straight line; it’s a path. The path loops and swirls, it rests and it get’s beaten by the wind; there are so many factors that affect it’s getting from point A to point B. It’s the reason why the opening title sequence in the movie Forest Gump is amazing, and it’s more amazing when you go back and watch it after you’ve watched the entire film.
My answer to the question ‘do the feathers mean anything’ was – Have you ever watched Forest Gump?