The first time I saw Josh Ritter perform was in a small venue in Arlington, VA. I was there because of a handwritten postcard I’d received days earlier, suggesting I come to the show. That night, in a small venue that doubled as a restaurant, he shared his music over clanking silverware and hushed conversations. I was transfixed. In the years since, Ritter has released three critically-acclaimed albums and has been described as one of the greatest living songwriters. Last year, he took his words to paper and released his first novel, Bright’s Passage.
Knowing Etsy’s commitment to both storytelling and craft, I was thrilled when his manager reached out to me about the video for a single from Ritter’s new EP, Bringing in the Darlings (out today on iTunes and in indie record stores near you). I am so excited to announce the world premiere of this beautiful, handcrafted piece of art, right here on Etsy.
The stop-motion animation for “Love Is Making Its Way Back Home” uses photographs culled from over 12,000 pieces of construction paper to animate a nighttime drive. A team of nearly twenty artists, editors, directors and product assistants ushered the video into being. The group started with storyboarding and computer animation before converting the digital graphics to paper cutouts (frame by frame), photographing those 12,000 cutouts and then stitching them together into four minutes of paper animation. As production designer Sam Cohen said, “We had to determine ahead of time which images to cut as positives or negatives, how to anchor the cutouts to the paper frame that surrounds it so the pieces wouldn’t fall out, as well as a host of other problems. It was definitely the most labor intensive video we’ve been a part of.”
In addition to the video premiere of “Love Is Making Its Way Back Home,” Ritter has teamed up with Etsy to open a shop. The artists behind the video have created a limited run of screenprinted posters based on a selection of frames. Each poster will include one of the die-cut construction paper cut-outs, as well as an mp3 of “Love Is Making Its Way Back Home.”
Video produced by Erez Horovitz of Prominent Figures.