“Eyeoneye” is an archetypal Andrew Bird jam. All the audible hallmarks are there: lilting voice, crystal-clear whistle, jaunty, jangly rhythm that leaves listeners just a bit jollier. In order to capture the spirit of both song and artist in a music video, director Yu “Ewan” Morita took cues from the lyrics and created a fascinating, warm-and-fuzzy journey through Bird’s own body. “I thought it would be interesting if I expressed what is happening inside our body–the reactions we have when we get emotional, and what kind of images develop inside our brains,” Morita tells Co.Design. “I didn’t want organs to look gruesome because the melody is very soft and gentle, so I came up with the idea of felt design.”
The concept was developed over the course of a single phone call between Bird and Morita, who found they shared a common vision. And though the video’s spirit is decidedly analog, its execution was entirely digital. “Everything was done on my Macintosh,” Morita says. “I made all the pieces first, then animated them, and added shadows and thickness so they looked like real felt.” With a style that has been described as Terrence and Howard by way of Carl Sagan and a touch Powers of Ten, perhaps Morita’s greatest coup was creating a charmingly accurate depiction of the musician himself. “I had a hard time with his face; I made so many felt-Andrews in order to find the one perfect felt-Andrew,” he says.
The video’s handmade aesthetic made it a perfect fit for a May premier on . . . Etsy? Yup, the crafty juggernaut had an exclusive and now hosts an Andrew Bird shop featuring totes, buttons, and CDs of the new Break It Yourself album.