Nijuu - Blue

Directed by
Cecilia Reeve

Freedom in water.

Blue is London artist Cecilia Reeve’s hand-drawn animated music video for the musician
Nijuu. Responding to the South Korean artist’s serene, lo-fi style, Cecilia conjured images of an
underwater dream. In this short film, what begins as an ordinary swim in a pool becomes
a lyrical adventure, populated by graceful, anthropomorphic sea creatures, as the
swimmer is transported to an imaginary, underwater world.

For ‘Blue’ all the frames were hand-drawn on separate pieces of paper using a light box. The film is made from over 700 individual drawings. These were then scanned in and digitally coloured. Although this process is laborious, Cecilia finds it rewarding. As she says: ‘I love the textures and
imperfections that pencil on paper offers.’

An avid swimmer, the idea for the video began at Cecilia’s local pool. ‘I discovered a love for these places at art school. They offer solitude and the chance to reflect on things as you swim. There’s something uniquely liberating about swimming: you feel completely free.’ Freedom, she says, has taken on an added resonance during the recent Lockdown.

Reeve 'Aesthetically, I’m very drawn to swimming pools and water. I really enjoy creating and imagining these indoor refuges and exploring ways to recreate the movement of water and images of submersion.

Nijuu’s world is very surreal. In her debut album she explores ideas that she is living in the water where everyone else has become a sea creature. I loved this dreamlike fantasy and wanted to explore it. When I am swimming I often lose myself in my thoughts and forget where I am, this freedom and fantasy that swimming offers was the starting point for my animation.'