Creative Arts

OK GO’s New Video a Visual Treat and Circus of Optical Illusions

Screen Shot 2014-06-17 at 12.58.49 PM

Wheeeee! Take a break and check out this new vid for OK GO’s song “The Writing on the Wall” — and try to figure out which way is up…or down. I watched it several times to try to make sense of what I was seeing: On one hand it’s very 2014 in concept, on the other the ‘effects’ aren’t CGI, they are totally basic, simple optical illusions, filmed with hand-held cameras.

Yep, as you may have guessed, this video is all about how two people in a relationship can experience things differently, even if they look the same from the outside. Love this creative, visual way of exploring that idea.

As Rolling Stone reported:

Taking nearly three weeks to assemble and 50 takes to get right, the video attempts to add motion to the geometric paintings of artists like Felice Varini and Dan Tobin-Smith (who designed the cover of Jay Z’s Blueprint 3) while remaining true to the track that inspired it, a pre-break-up report from a relationship in which two people keep seeing things in different ways. The connection becomes explicit during the bridge, when a rolling camera deciphers a message that reads, “I think I understand you, but I don’t.”

“It was important to me that we didn’t add a layer of meaning that’s not already there,” explains frontman and co-director Damian Kulash. “We wanted to be able to have messages in there, but I didn’t want them going throughout the entire song in way that would make you feel like you were reading the whole time.

Screen Shot 2014-06-17 at 12.59.07 PM

Related on Eco Chick

Leyla McCalla Reimagines Langston Hughes Poems as Songs

Want to Feel Awesome (Right Now)? Watch India.Arie’s Brand New Video, “Just Do You”

Starre Vartan is founder and editor-in-chief of and the author of the Eco-Chick Guide to Life. She's also a freelance science and environment writer who has published in National Geographic, CNN, Scientific American, Mental Floss, Pacific Standard, the NRDC, and many more. She lives on an island in Puget Sound with her partner and black cat. She was a geologist in her first career, and still picks up rocks wherever she goes.