Take Five with…Aya Tanimura

08.11.2016 - Posted by : Black Dog

With bedazzled bullhorn in hand, director Aya Tanimura has emerged with several gorgeous music videos in the past few months. From Bea Miller’s captivating “Yes Girl” video to Charlie Puth’s emotional “Dangerously video to her most recent stroll along the beach with Disney’s Moana and Alessia Cara  in “How Far I’ll Go”- Aya has certainly been busy! We caught up with the girl boss herself to talk about what inspires her, what it’s been like working with up and coming superstars and what advice she has for the public at large.

 You’ve been very busy these past few months with the so many videos- Bea Miller, Charlie Puth, Alessia Cara- all such young, incredible talents! How has it been working with them and what was your favorite part of these shoots?  

It’s great – I don’t think I ever matured past the age of 14 so I feel right at home with the youth of today! I think my favorite part of working on these shoots is getting the opportunity to collaborate with extremely talented artists before they get jaded – they are still human and I can connect with them directly without having to go through an entourage of 10!bts-dangerously-3-of-38

So how did you land in the music video space? 

I never set out to make music videos – I always had a lofty goal to create features (which is still a lofty goal), but I had the opportunity to create the lyric videos for Katy Perry’s last album and was given complete creative freedom-so I let my freak flag fly. These videos really blew up which in turn caught the eye of a few agencies and that’s how I got signed to Black Dog and the rest is history (or should I say herstory? Sorry… couldn’t help myself!). It was very cathartic to know that there were people out there that enjoyed my weird sensibility, I think making the lyric videos gave me the confidence to fully embrace my style!

Your work is beautiful! Who or what has been your biggest inspiration? 

Margaret Cho, Hal Ashby, Iris Apfel, Christine Vachon off the top of my head in terms of industry people, but to be honest (as cringe worthy as this sounds) – my inspiration is really the world around me. It can be a conversation I overhear waiting in life for a coffee, a Facebook update, a facial expression my dog makes… anything really!


What are you currently obsessed with? 

I have many an obsession (I’m slightly terrified to divulge them all so publicly for fear of shame and ridicule but here goes): The smell of colored pencils, the sound of leather soled shoes on concrete, Crunch Wrap Supremes-no meat, substitute beans with 7 packets of fire sauce-The Batchelor, Obese animals, Biore nose strips…just to name a few. 

No shame at all! If you could tell the world one thing what would it be? 

Do not fuck this up

Get out and vote Hillary

Trump is a nut job

While I cannot vote in America … I am using all the power I have to try and help my beloved adopted home not go down in flames. Vote!


You heard it here- go vote! Don’t miss Aya’s latest videos for Charlie Puth “Dangerously” (above) and Alessia Cara “How Far I’ll Go” for Disney’s Moana (below).

Aya Tanimura has a lot of exciting things in the works, keep up with her work here.

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