Oftentimes, the title of “Director” is associated with the person directing the scenes in movies and shows; however, that is not always the case. Yingjie Jin, for example, is an art director who has directed multiple music videos.
One of her more recent projects has already reached over 80k views on YouTube and features the artist YA QI in her song—IMMA DO ME.
The song centers around the ideas of self-empowerment and authenticity and serves as a reminder to stay true to oneself and to pursue one’s goals relentlessly regardless of what others think.
The song is a reflection of YA QI’s personal experiences and how she was able to break free from the societal expectations and people who were holding her down.
As the Art Director, Yingjie was responsible for captivating the audience with mesmerizing cinematography, vibrant colors, and most importantly, a compelling storytelling approach.
She comments: “In the initial planning stages, I collaborated closely with Director German Belkin and the artist Ya Qi to develop a powerful visual concept that aligned with the song’s themes of self-empowerment and authenticity.”
She started by transforming a bar with pink and purple tones into a visually striking stripper club. She also used key props to enhance the narrative, including a broken mirror that was strategically placed to communicate the inner struggle of the characters on their journey of self-discovery and acceptance.
One of the main scenes is located at a gas station and features YA QI’s break-up.
In designing this scene, Yingjie comments: “I created a sense of greenish lighting and surroundings, subtly conveying a feeling of discomfort and tension. The greenish tone served to emphasize the man’s negative emotions, making him appear more unpleasant in contrast to the artist’s self-empowerment.”
One of the biggest challenges in the creation of this music video was, in Yingjie’s words: “…maximizing the impact of [the] art while still meeting the audience’s curiosity.” In other words, she had to balance the artist’s unique vision with the aesthetic preferences of the general audience.
To do this, she added stunning visuals, including money in the air, pole dancing, and intense gunplay. All these visuals served to heighten the story’s tension and engage the audience while still ensuring a natural flow between scenes.
Yingjie’s work proved to be a success, with the end result being an engaging and emotional music video that quickly gained the attention of a large audience.
Throughout her work as an art director, Yingjie has learned the importance of constantly pushing the boundaries and seeking artistic growth in every project she works on.
On that note, she comments: “Life is still long, we should experience more, understand more, and accept some new things around us. For me, the art direction of each new film is my exploration of a new field, and I am very curious, excited, and full of enthusiasm.”
As for the future, Yingjie plans to continue to make music videos for talented artists. She finds that music videos allow for more “unrestrained imagination” than narrative film does and hopes to use that to her advantage.
All in all, Yingjie Jin is a talented art director who is pushing the boundaries of scene design with innovative ideas and engaging art.