Depeche Mode – Fragile Tension

Music video for Depeche Mode’s latest single “Fragile Tension”. I designed and developed software (using C++ / openframeworks) to process live footage of the band and dancers. The software analyzes the footage, and in real-time outputs visualizations based on motion and numerous user-controlled parameters to adjust the behaviour, look and feel, various different modes etc. All images are generated from this software, then edited, composited and finished in a traditional post-production workflow.

more info at

Credits & Acknowledgements

Video Commissioner: John Moule
Directors: Barney Steel (Found Collective) & Rob Chandler
Producer: Sam Brown
Software design & development: Memo Akten

made with openFrameworks




The raw video shots were broken down shot by shot and various layers were rotoscoped, separated and rendered out as quicktime files. (This was all done in the traditional way with AfterEffects). Then each of these shots and layers were individually fed into my custom software. My software analyzes the video and based on the dozens of parameters outputs a new sequence (as a sequence of png’s). The analysis is done almost realtime (depending on input video size) and the user can play with the dozens of parameters in realtime, while the app is running and even while it is rendering the processed images to disk. So all the animations you see in the video, were ‘performed’ in realtime. No keyframes used. Lots of different ‘looks’ were created (presets) and applied to the different shots and layers. Each of these processed sequences were rendered to disk and re-composited and edited back together with Final Cut and AfterEffects to produce the final video.