Author Archives: abbybrecher

Comment: AfterEffects Reflection

Working with Adobe AfterEffects has been an extremely pleasant experience, especially in contrast to the challenges I faced when working with Gimp. What I enjoyed most about Adobe AfterEffects was its easy format. A lot of the program’s functions resemble those in Photoshop, making it a relatively easy transition. Despite this initial ease, AfterEffects challenged me by forcing me to test my patience when working with a new program. I caught myself trying to get through this project as soon as possible, rather than taking the time to enjoy the process and create high quality work. After realizing this, I made sure to go back over each piece of my AfterEffects project, to make sure that my initial impatience did not affect the quality of my work. I focused the content of my work on the questions of space assignment we did via wordpress a few weeks ago. I liked the abstract questions that I proposed, and thought that it would be visually striking to have such open-ended questions rather than telling a story like in the “Dakota” video we watched in class. When it came to animating the text and bringing it to life, I tried to utilize AfterEffects’ functions to personify the meaning behind the words. For example, I ask the question “What determines where one space ends and another begins?” I chose to animate this question by having the text stretch across the screen, suggesting that space is everywhere and there are no clear divisions between spaces. Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.49.03 PM I also utilized color to emphasis words and highlight distinctions between the assorted vocabulary, such as in this photo example below: Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.49.11 PM Furthermore, AfterEffects provided me with several opportunities to both learn about myself as a worker, and learn about utilizing a new computer program to create art. I am pleased with the developments I have made regarding both, in addition to the work I have created in class all semester.

Conference Project Post #3: Glitching Heimbold

As the semester comes to a close and there is less than a week left to finalize my conference project, I feel confident in the work I have accomplished. I am at a really good spot with my work, and only have a few final steps to take before reaching completion. Over the past few weeks, I have been working in photoshop and ImageGlitch to create graffiti style images and glitching to contribute to my panorama photo collage of Heimbold. I have already included most of the glitches I plan to use in past conference updates, and below is a photoshop image I was playing with over Thanksgiving break. Unfortunately, I have come to the realization that this image does not coincide with the overall theme of my piece, and therefore will not be included in the photo collage. I’m choosing to share it anyway because I personally really like the work I did and I think the image would make a really cool sticker. Screen Shot 2014-11-30 at 3.06.00 PM I have also assembled my panorama images of Heimbold to complete the full panorama, and I have made progress with regards to the presentation of my piece. Originally, I was planning to mount my work on plexiglass and suspend it from the ceiling, but I ran into issues with the plexiglass due to sizing conflicts. Instead, I am now planning to purchase foam core from Staples in order to mount my piece, and I have spoken with Janine about the location of my installation (I’ll keep that a surprise for Monday). My piece will influence the space it occupies by hanging from the wall, therefore suggesting an immediate and obvious interruption to the flow of the space. Additionally, I think that the glitching effects will contribute to a new perspective on Heimbold’s exterior, therefore influencing the overall space that my piece occupies. When considering a class reading to connect my work to, the first thing that comes to mind is when Claire Bishop states that social collaboration and conceptual/ sculptural practices are all “linked by a belief in the empowering creativity of collective action and shared ideas.” This quote resonates with me and my work because I took a lot of my initial inspiration to reframe Heimbold from class discussion. Specifically, when we analyzed the visual code of Heimbold. Hearing the class voice its concerns over the building’s visual aesthetic inspired me to create a new visual aesthetic, therefore showing that my creativity was empowered by shared ideas. Overall, I am extremely pleased with the work and progress I have made on this project over the course of the semester. I have learned so much about new glitch techniques and tricks, which I am very excited about utilizing in future projects. As well, I have also stretched my creativity in order to include class motifs into my inspiration.  

Conference Project Post #2: Glitched Heimbold

I have made a lot of progress on my conference work since the first wordpress assignment. Most recently (as in 5 minutes ago), I purchased several materials that I will need for the installation of my photo collage. Such supplies included a plexiglass sheet, fishing wire, and ceiling hooks, so that I can hang my final project from the ceiling and have it serve as a more interactive piece than simply a collage hanging on a wall. In addition to exercising my credit card on amazon, I have also put the photo lab’s scanner to work. I began experimenting with scan glitching, a style of glitch art in which I play and move my photo while the machine is scanning it. I was extremely excited to try out a new style of glitch art, and I’m even more pleased with the results. Below is my favorite piece of scan-glitching that I definitely plan to use when I assemble my collage. Screen Shot 2014-11-20 at 12.27.24 PM I also used the scanner to upload a graffiti drawing that a boy drew for me on a date. I’m planning on playing with the image in photoshop over Thanksgiving break, to add color and clean up the image into something bright and exciting to include in my photo collage. man I’m really excited about the shape my conference work is taking, and look forward to watching it grow even more. I am continuing to take inspiration from Dada photo collaging styles, in addition to several readings from class. One reading that stood out to me in particular was the interview with Barbara Kruger, in which she said “if architecture is a slab of meat, then so-called public art is a piece of garnish laying next to it.” Kruger went on to describe public art as having a “decorative function.” I definitely visualize my conference work as a garnish, serving as a decorative function in Heimbold. The more I think about my piece and the more effort I put into it, the more I see it as having a dual function of decorating the environment as well as improving it. Hopefully the class and the audience will feel the same way.

Conference Project Post #1: Glitch Collage

For my conference project, I am going to make a photo collage of Heimbold loosely inspired by the style of Dada photo collaging. The aesthetic of Dada photo collaging embraces chance, accident and improvisation which are all important themes when designing a space intervention or any type of street art. I envision my photo collage as a panoramic photograph of Heimbold’s exterior, with collage components inspired by glitch art. I am currently in the initial phases of my conference work: I have taken the panoramic shots necessary for the initial skeleton of my collage, and I have also begun glitching a few components of the photos (as seen below). smoke sign    heimbold sign These glitches are only the beginning of what I’m hoping to accomplish in this conference project, but it’s difficult to say what else is in store. The meat of my photo collage work will be drawn from chance and improvisation, resembling the style of Dada collaging. I plan to glitch a few more pieces before printing and beginning the actual collage. This piece should be viewed as a visual reframe of my environment. Heimbold is a building I tend to be frustrated with frequently in regards to its aesthetic (as discussed many times in class and wordpress) and I’m hoping to express this frustration and create a new visual aesthetic through this conference work. When considering where to place my finished piece, I am still unsure. I have yet to feel inspired by a specific space in Heimbold, but I am currently keeping my eye open for a installation space. Ideally, this space would be somewhere that would also enable the viewer to compare my reframe with the original, aka outside of Heimbold. The concept of a visual reframe that I am trying to embody through this piece can be tied to the conclusion Saskia Sassen makes in her writing regarding public interventions in massive cities. Sassen writes that “the work of design produces narratives that add to the value of existing contexts…” Although I am still unclear about exactly what my new narrative will be, I am confident that my conference work will successfully contribute a new narrative to the one already existing inside Heimbold.      

Space HiJack: Donuts

For my space intervention assignment I decided to fill a box with donuts and hide it somewhere in the main lobby of Heimbold. What inspired me to use donuts as my point of intervention for this box assignment was the inevitable reaction that donuts bring: happiness. I knew that this was the emotion I wanted my box project to inspire because it is the opposite emotion that I interpreted when analyzing the visual code of Heimbold a few weeks prior. When I walk through Heimbold, I always notice the unpleasant demeanor of my peers. The students in Heimbold tend to look forlorn, upset, and extremely preoccupied with the art they’re making. I wanted to try and reverse this negative environment and bring the people of Heimbold a little bit of happiness. unnamed-1   unnamed What amazed me the most about this assignment was the immediate success of my box. Within seconds of hiding my box, I saw students flocking to the box to grab a donut. I was confident that dessert would stimulate a positive response, but I didn’t expect the response to be so immediate. Within 10 minutes, all of the donuts were gone and there was a crowd of students in the lobby of Heimbold smiling. I am extremely pleased with the success of my box assignment, and even more satisfied knowing that I managed to wipe the frowns off of cranky SLC students’ faces, if only for a few minutes.  

Comment: Formulary for a New Urbanism

The first issue that Chtcheglov addresses is the concept of being bored with the city: we know how to “read every promise in faces” and we have to “strain to discover the mysteries on sidewalk billboards”. Even when taking into consideration the massive amounts of street art that fill the walls, streets and alleyways of cities, I must agree that we are indeed bored with the city. When it comes to designing my own personal formula for a new urbanism, this boredom is the first issue I want to address as well. Despite the thousands of un-boring things New York City has to offer, it seems to me that the visual aesthetic has become uninspiring. Those who venture to the city, regardless of their familiarity with the big apple, are expecting to see billboards, graffiti, dirt and grime. A citizen walking down the street IS in fact bored, and probably will walk right pass the incredible street art found next to a fire hydrant. In my formula for a new urbanism, I would want to redesign the city to have people appreciate the street art and the capitalistic art as well. Capitalistic art to me is defined as the art on billboards, advertisements, etc. Even though the huge electric sign for H&M in times square is probably one of the biggest eyesores out there, I would like to reshape the attitude of the city so that we wouldn’t see it as an eyesore. Instead of seeing the sign as a lame attempt to make us buy something we don’t need, it could be perceived as a display of sparkling lights that come together to create something big, bright, and inspiring, even if that inspiration is trying to sell you leggings for $19.99. In order to design a new urbanism, I think that the current urbanism needs a major attitude adjustment. By changing the way we see all forms of art, may it be advertisements, street art, or something in between, we will be able to erase this boredom that Chtcheglov references. Rather than losing the “Temple of the Sun”, we can bring that temple back by appreciating our surroundings and admiring the craftsmanship behind ads and street art alike.    

Questions of Space

  • Is space a physical thing? In which all physical things are to be located?
  • Are there areas where space doesn’t exist? Does space exist everywhere?
  • What distinguishes different spaces?
  • What determines where one space ends and another begins?
  • Is authority the determinant for public vs. private space?
  • Is it possible to have complete, private space?
  • If there is a language of space, how is the language applied? Can everyone speak this language or must it be taught to us?
  • If the language of space is not inherent, how does one teach the language?
  • How does society influence space?
  • Is there any space that is completely uninfluenced by society?

Visual Code of Heimbold

What initially strikes me about the visual code of Heimbold are its colors, and the lack of coordination between them. The building’s main lobby, featuring the cafe, is the perfect example of this. The colors in Heimbold’s main lobby can essentially be divided into two categories, the first being the combination of cool silver with woody light browns. The juxtaposition of these two colors, in addition to the angular design, create a specific modern aesthetic which is severely compromised by the second category of colors. Rather than maintain consistency, the wall facing the cafe and the chairs across the lobby both  stand in striking contrast to the aforementioned color scheme. The wall is a less-than appealing shade of yellow, with bright yellow and red circular chairs nearby. These clashing color schemes detract from Heimbold’s lobby’s potential for visual appeal. What I find most visually striking or aesthetically pleasing about Heimbold’s lobby are its high glass ceiling, and open window along one side. These prove to be great sources of light, and complement the silver and wood components of Heimbold’s color scheme. I occasionally envision this space with a more consistent color scheme, and I think Heimbold’s lighting would be further emphasized. A space’s lobby is extremely important in regard to analyzing its visual code. The lobby is the first space the individual walks into, and therefore responsible for the individual’s first impression of the space’s visual code. Furthermore, I think Heimbold’s first impression is skewed due to the poor contrasting color choices, which detract from Heimbold’s potential aesthetic appeal.
For my sticker project, I chose to reframe Rihanna to show the truth behind her popstar image, which is reflected in one of her tweets. In order to accomplish reframe, I utilized text as a point of intervention. By placing Rihanna’s tweet across a photo of her, I reframed her bad bitch image and revealed the truth. Deciding how to efficiently utilize text as a point of intervention was the biggest challenge in the reframe assignment. Initially, I wanted to use basic text and typography to present Rihanna’s tweet, but after critique and consideration, I realized that the text needed to be taken to another level in order to successfully and powerfully reframe Rihanna’s image. Instead of simply utilizing a text box, I placed a screenshot of Rihanna’s tweet across her face. This made the text a much stronger point of intervention, because it was accompanied by twitter logos that strengthened the reality of her tweet, in addition to providing authentic twitter typography. Furthermore, by utilizing text as a point of intervention, I made the negative side of Rihanna’s social media presence and image visible. In terms of placement, I plan to put my sticker on the doors of bathroom stalls in the women’s bathroom in Heimbold. Specifically, I want to place the stickers on the side of the door that the viewer will look at while using the restroom. Determining the placement of my sticker was a particularly interesting experience, especially when considering the genders of the bathrooms. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to place my sticker in the bathroom, but when I went into each bathroom with my sticker, the context varied incredibly. In the men’s restroom, the sticker took on a significantly different meaning than my original intent. Rather than enable the sticker’s message, the environment of the men’s room seemed to take on a “double negative” vibe and made the sticker appear to be promoting submissive behavior and domestic violence. This vibe was even further strengthened when I placed a mock-up of my sticker next to a sign promoting safety on campus, with specific numbers to call in case of domestic violence. Noticing this change in the message of my sticker based on the environment was my favorite revelation in this assignment. It amazed me how much a space can shape the meaning of a visual intervention or piece of street art. unnamed-1      unnamed