Illustrator, animator and filmmaker Raman Djafari has developed a firmly established following for his wildly imaginative music videos and films for those including Lucky Chops and Fjaak which won major animation awards at La Guarimba and Animattikon, respectively. His latest however might be his biggest venture yet – and the biggest pop star collaboration this year – as Djafari directs the video for Dua Lipa and Elton John’s Cold Heart.
The video sees four Elton John inspired claymation-like 3D characters dressed in flares, Elton glares and other 70s disco attire. The 3D characters arrive by escalators through a portal in space, to a camp, glittering party. As they dance, 2D hand-drawn elements from shooting stars to giant flowers adorn the frames, adding an ethereal energy.
The inspiration for this glittering, studio 54-like environment was inspired by “a post-lockdown feeling to get back to a place where we can once again enjoy and feel music together in a fresh 2021-kind-of-way”.
Hand-drawn illustrations of Dua Lipa and Elton John by Seo Young then arrive to invite the 3D characters to explore more of Djafari’s vivid interplanetary landscapes where each character dances on top of their own planet.
On his Instagram, Djafari expressed “just the thought of having a project of mine be seen by millions of people made me really anxious […] I knew that this would bring a lot of attention but it’s nonetheless a bit overwhelming… Seeing how great it has been received was a wonderful feeling though.” He also sings the praises of his “amazing” team who he urges people to follow. “This video wouldn’t be what it is without each one of them.”
Raman Djafari / Blinkink: Dua Lipa and Elton John, Cold Heart video (Copyright © UMG, 2021)