Colin Solal Cardo
Mr Solal Cardo,
If it’s ok I’d like to send a few (3-4) Q’s your way, for publishing on mvwiki.com, videos.antville.org
A: this brings me back! I used to read & post on antville in the early 2010's
Anyway here are the Q’s
Q: You’re one of the most legendary dirs of La Blogothèque’s era, who succeeded into other endeavors, how the fuck did you do it
A: Haha. Thank you. Ok so no short answer to this but I think even from my early days I tried to establish an identity that I could call my own. It's quite tricky when you join a preexisting project with an established aesthetic to make your mark and stand out. First thing I did was change the design of the titles. Seems like a small detail but the original titles were kind of iconic - killing them signified a change of era and that yellow typeface I did began to spread everywhere on Blogotheque-copycats, music videos etc. Artists would also ask for it when working with Blogotheque even when I wasn't directing. It became a branding element that cut ties with the Vincent Moon videos and was a sort of power move from me. I was probably over my head at the time but it worked. I also made sure my name was visible. I wanted to be recognized for my work beyond the Blogotheque brand. Then it was just a lot of fighting to push the enveloppe on our videos. I pushed for bigger cameras, DOPs, steadicam, crane, choreography, narrative elements etc. at every opportunity - a lot of times sacrificing my pay. I got branded a difficult director by the team but it really helped me standout as our usual take-away show fare was becoming ubiquitous and not so special anymore. At the same time, Blogotheque was still this incredible platform for a director - so many opportunities to meet great artists! This way my work got noticed by other artists and commissioners and I started getting music video requests more frequently. That being said, it took a long time as I joined Blogotheque in late 2008. It took fucking ages in my opinion, countless days and all nighters of hard work, no money and was such a slow, step by step process - there is no magic formula. But I still consider myself lucky.
Q: What’s your fave music vid, yours or other
A: There are a lot of videos I've made which I'm quite emotional about because they represent different eras of my career - the Blogotheque era was definitely a wild ride - it would be a bit long and self indulgent to list them all. There is this video that we shot in Tokyo in 2011 that I will never forget, it was a single take and felt afterwards like I had woken up from a dream. It was the first time that I truly felt like I had achieved something that was as good as the videos that made me fall in love with Blogotheque in the first place, I was very proud of it. It also got shared by Yoshihide Otomo at the time which is a legendary Japanese musician, the video went a bit viral in Japan. I still tear up when I watch it because it reminds me of this shooting experience which was so profound for me - and I was also obsessed with this song.
My fav video from another director is probably Robyn - Call Your Girlfriend by Max Vitali. When I saw that video I was starstuck and it made me wish I had made it. It's very simple and not necessarily impressive from a directing point of view but for me it's such a perfect blend of cinema-verite and pop. It tells a story with very little: camera movement, dance and pure pop star charisma. I love big toys and expensive setups as much as the next guy but at the end of the day this simplicity is what I aspire to do.
Q: Are you headed towards a feature film career
A: Maybe ? I don't pressure myself into it. I hope so. I have just directed a documentary short movie for a Canal+ series and it was a beautiful experience, even the screenwriting part which was maybe my biggest concern since I don't have a lot of experience in that field yet. I am also writing a script for a visual album for an artist that I can't disclose yet. That would be a step in the right direction.
Q: What other thoughts go through your head
Q: EXTRA What inspires you
A: I watch a lot of movies - a LOT - and love to reference them in my work. I'm always looking out for cool art outside of my field too. Paintings, litterature, contemporary art etc. Fashion! I love fashion and being able to peek into this world and work closer with designers as been one of the joys of these past years for me. Some fashion shows also have these incredible sets and that can be super inspiring when writing a pop video. I also spend a stupid amount of time on instagram bookmarking and screenshotting and making moodboards. Inspiration doesn't always come easily so it's important for me to be up to date and see what everybody is doing, it motivates me. Even during my Blogotheque days when I was just a session director I would watch every music video every day (shoutout to antville and videostatic). I was obsessed and even when I saw something I hated it pushed me to create something better.
Q: EXTRA What do you want the world to know
A: Film is not dead. Fuck an Alexa ;)
Q: PLUS What connected you to LB
A: This is a true web 2.0 story for you. When La Blogotheque was starting out in Paris it was still the early days of Youtube, like 2006, 2007. People who did web video content where eventually meant to meet as it was such a small community. I was not involved in music but I had this video games blog that we created with a programmer friend. I was obsessed with video games - in another universe maybe I'm still having a career in that field... Anyways there was a web show I loved called the 1Up Show and it felt so new and exciting to me, it inspired me to create my own show. I hired a friend who was also a young games journalist and we just did it, literally in my teenage bedroom. The show became successful quite quickly in video games communities around the world and big forums like NeoGaf helped spread the word. Soon after, we got represented by the same Paris agency as Blogotheque. After a year of that show I became a bit tired of it and worried that I was losing the plot. I was still dreaming of becoming a "proper" director and was jaded by the video games industry. In 2008, I go to this random cocktail party and meet a guy who tells me he's doing this show just like ours, but with musicians. He offered me to join them. I said yes. I was 21.