Underground Film Journal

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Drew & The Medicinal Pen: Naming The Gap

By Mike Everleth ⋅ February 27, 2010

[NOTE: Music video is no longer online.]

Embedded above is a music video for a new song by the band Drew & The Medicinal Pen called “Naming the Gap.” The video is charmingly animated by Donna K. and features a poor woman being hassled by forces beyond her control. There’s also a cute connection to all the animated sequences the heroine is put through, which is fun to spot then watch again to see what you missed.

Drew & The Medicinal Pen began as a solo music project by Drew Henkels, but evolved into a full band including Anna Morsett, Missy Liu and Zach Arlan. “Naming the Gap” is off of the Pen’s second album — the first one with the band. However, this particular song is just Drew and his guitar. I’ve been a fan of Drew’s music since his first CD. It’s very catchy with a nice mix of sorrow and sprightliness.  If you like this song, you can buy the album Heavy Head at CDBaby or on iTunes.

I hadn’t seen any of Donna K.’s animations until just now, but the simplicity of her drawings here really match well with Drew’s music. Things that particularly standout to me are:

  1. I like how the heroine’s position in space changes from one sequence to the next even when her actual body doesn’t move, e.g. one shot she’s lying down in bed, but when the bed disappears, she’s falling down through the air.
  2. Even though there’s no facial expression on the heroine’s face, you still feel her emotional state in each sequence through her simple body movements.
  3. Strangely enough, I really enjoy watching the paper change for each drawing, how you can really see the texture of it in some drawings and the crinkly imperfections in it.
  4. The final transformation.

Donna K. has a handful of other animations uploaded to Vimeo. Some are drawing animation like “Naming the Gap” and others are stop-motion claymation. I recommend watching Diamonds Won’t Keep You Warm, which is short and sweet.

Lastly, Donna K. maintains the greatest “making of” film blog of all time. The blog and the film share the same name: Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then, which is being directed by Brent Green with Donna K. also working on it. The blog is an amazingly entertaining read with wonderful production pictures. I think Drew Henkels helped out on the film a bit, too. Anyway, I’m real excited to see this one. But, for now, I’m real happy to get acquainted with Donna K.’s animation.

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