AI music video made on a smartphone

March 24, 2024 - 10:25
To create the music video, Phạm Vĩnh Khương has been adopting multiple AI applications on a smartphone to generate unique and realistic images, ranging from natural landscapes to historical landmarks, and ancient paintings to modern photographs.

Director Phạm Vĩnh Khương films with his smartphone. — VNA/VNS Photo

By Phương Hà & Lương Hương

Young director Phạm Vĩnh Khương is finalising his long-awaited major project - the music video Bức Tranh Đại Việt (The Painting of Great Việt Nam), aimed at honouring the cultural, historical, and national values of Việt Nam.

To create the music video, Khương has been adopting multiple AI applications on a smartphone to generate unique and realistic images, ranging from natural landscapes to historical landmarks, and ancient paintings to modern photographs.

The 32-year-old has over 10 years of experience in filmmaking using a phone, earning him the reputation as a master of the genre.

After the success of many projects in graphic and 3D films, he continues to explore and experiment, adopting AI in filming with smartphones.

“This is a film about my homeland, so I cannot simply describe and command AI to create images with its limited resources when it comes to capturing landscapes, people, and historical events,” Khương said.

Khương experiments on filming with smartphones and AI assistance. — VNA/VNS Photo

To obtain information for the project, he had to reach out to both Vietnamese and international photographers to use their photographic works, especially award-winning photos.

He spent a significant amount of time studying and expanding his knowledge of Vietnamese culture and history. He also rediscovered his own photographic works taken during his time as a photographer or during his travels across different regions of the country to provide additional resources for AI.

Afterwards, Khương performed technical operations on his smartphone to ensure the most authentic and smooth connection possible between these resources.

The music video is not a historical one, but rather a film created by someone who loves the national culture and history, according to Khương.

“The film may have some imperfections, but it represents my contribution, as well as that of the photographers involved, in promoting national culture. I temporarily refer to this as a music video because it encompasses both visuals and music. I want to praise the land where I was born and raised and honour the country with its spirit of unity in the face of foreign invasion," he said.

“I aim to celebrate the essence, culture, and image of Vietnamese women, so undoubtedly, this is the most 'ambitious' project I have ever undertaken."

Khương devoted a significant amount of time to the project, up to 700 hours, as well as many sleepless nights to write scripts and choose locations and resources.

"It was like an overflowing source of inspiration that urged me to take relentless action. I made this video out of love for my country and also for myself because I enjoy exploring new things and challenging myself. If this pioneering effort becomes popular, it means I have found a cost-effective solution for film production, making the film industry more accessible to young enthusiasts who have ideas but lack the means to bring them to life," he said.

The Painting of Đại Việt will be the first music video to show respect for the country that is created solely with AI technology and smartphones, without the need for cameras, computers, or professional software.

He hopes that it will inspire future generations and provide audiences with a unique and emotional experience when they contemplate the beauty of Việt Nam through the perspective of AI

A scene in 'The Painting of Đại Việt', a film created with AI assistance by director Khương. — Photo courtesy of the director

Earlier, in February, Khương collaborated with Runway, a platform for filmmakers using AI, to create his first short film. The film addresses the concerns of humanity amid rapid advancements in technology.

The film was conceptualised, scripted, and produced in about 100 hours. It was his first time exploring the sci-fi genre by combining elements of abstraction, imagination, and metaphorical imagery.

Khương said he used the image blending capabilities of AI to create a cohesive narrative-driven artwork with a clear objective, rather than just being a collection of demo trailers. The completed film has been uploaded to platforms such as YouTube, Vimeo, and various specialised groups at home and abroad.

The film was screened as part of the promotional campaign for the application on the developer's own platform. This is the first for such a film to be entirely created using AI and solely on a smartphone in the country.

After the non-profit project of The Painting of Đại Việt, Khương plans to further study the market, algorithms, and AI techniques, combining them with 2D-3D film editing software to continue his creative journey and produce even more unique and distinctive films.

"Initially, I had no other choice but to film with a phone. However, as time went on, I found it intriguing because rapid advancements in technology brought about new experiences," he said.

"Despite now having a strong team with modern equipment, I still use smartphone to shoot. For me, the phone has become a close companion and a part of my identity for many years." — VNS