Monthly Archives: April 2017

Video Mapping: Projector Night

IMG_20170420_201551330 My experience of projector night was very positive. I enjoyed getting to display my work as well as see the work of my classmates projected all over the walls and ceilings of Heimbold. I especially liked seeing how much variety there was in the different work that people had created, despite it all originating from the same software. I enjoyed how our projections temporarily transformed the building. At first, having never been to a projection show before, I had a hard time envisioning what it would entail. Walking around Heimbold and seeing the different spaces available for projection, as well as seeing what my classmates tried during rehearsals, helped me to get a clearer understanding. To plan for projector night, I first thought about which of my videos would make the most sense displayed in 3D space. I chose one conference video, “My Never Sunshine,” which has a consistent theme of a blue sky with clouds, a rainbow and birds. I decided to project it onto an uneven surface of a ceiling in Heimbold so that the pipes on the ceiling would create interesting angles and shapes when combined with the projected image. This video also has song lyrics in the form of kinetic text. If I repeated this projection now I would get a speaker to play the song audio as well. IMG_20170420_202552312 The second video that I chose to project is a shape motion video with morphing outlines on a background that changes color. IMG_20170417_194444729_HDR The third video I worked with was one I called “Geometric Outer Space,” which involves shapes and lines with repeaters moving across a background of tiny points that appear like stars in space. Although the star background unfortunately did not show up in the projection, I thought that the lines with repeaters looked interesting on the ceiling. IMG_20170413_201125617 I think that my geometric shapes video was probably subconsciously influenced by Yayoi Kusama’s infinity rooms, especially those that are reminiscent of outer space, such as Aftermath of the Obliteration of Eternity, and her infinity nets, which inspired the star-like points in the background of my piece. kusama_33 kusama_21 The main problem I had while preparing for projector night was that I had technical issues, first setting up the Video Projection Tool software and then getting the computer I was using to communicate properly with a projector. After figuring out these issues with the help of a classmate and our professor, the rest of our rehearsal time went much more smoothly. I played around with different shapes for my projection, and tried matching the keystones to various angles in the architecture of the building. I also tried out mapping on various surfaces, including through a doorway onto a ceiling inside the room, on a flat wall and on a ceiling. In the end, I decided to map onto a ceiling with spillover onto the walls on either side, because I thought it was an interesting use of space and worked particularly well with my sky-themed video, creating a kind of immersive experience for someone underneath it and looking up. IMG_20170420_203617458 Prior to our rehearsals, I thought that video mapping for an audience would be more of a stressful experience than it turned out to be. By the time projector night rolled around, I felt fairly confident in my ability to set up my projector and my VPT map, and overall the experience was quite fun. It was gratifying to be able to show my friends some of my work displayed in an interesting way, as well as to see everyone else’s projections. I expect my maps to be experienced as fun, cheery and lighthearted, due to the use of bright colors and nature themes. I think that the kinetic text in one video also added an element of intrigue, since people would have to stop under the projection and concentrate to read the words. IMG_20170420_202648520 I was surprised by how much projection can change the appearance of a video, making simpler images look more complex as they interact with the building, toning down brighter colors, and hiding small details. If I understood these effects when I first started making videos, I would have included more saturated colors and made my shapes take up more of the space in my videos. For the geometric shapes video in particular, I would have made the lines longer and narrower, and made them move across the screen more quickly. I would have increased the size of the stars in the background so that they would have been visible. Overall, I was pleased with how my work looked, and how it worked in the space I chose.

Video Mapping: Projector Night

IMG_0968 IMG_1022 IMG_0957 IMG_0966 IMG_0963   I thought that projector night was really fun.  I had a blast putting up my work onto the walls and having people see it.  My friends came to look at the work, which made the experience even better.  It’s a wonderful experience to have your friends see work that you have worked on for a while.  I thought that the night went well and everyone’s work looked great.  I liked seeing what everyone put on the walls, and how they decided to map them onto the walls. What I did to plan for projector night was fairly simple.  I decided to use half of the classroom to project, and I liked the segmented walls.  The segments in the walls made a nice guideline to place my videos in.  I treated each segment or two as a video and combined multiple videos together.  While preparing for projector night, my projection got larger and larger.  Originally it took up half of the height of the wall, but when projector night came about, the projection reached the entire length of the wall.  I think that almost everything that happened during projector night happened as expected.  One thing that did not go as planned was a change in my map; some segments got distorted and deleted, and then the others got messed up, so I had to start the maps over. I think that my maps should be seen as cheerful and fun.  I use a lot of bright colors and fast movements to create a more playful vibe.  I think that my maps looked as they should have, and I am happy with how they looked.  I mapped them how I wanted to.  However, if I were to map the same work again, I might map the videos half on the wall and half on the floor.  I think that that would look pretty cool.

Video Mapping: Projector Night

map_01_molina Preparing for projector night was exciting and fun (only the slightest bit nerve wracking)! VPT is a great tool that allows for so many more options that I would have thought in projection. Quickly I loved the idea that one could import multiple videos and combine them in different arrangements in order to make something different. At the beginning of using VPT I enjoyed using the live camera combined with pre-made videos. The idea that a person could walk into a projection and see themselves is simple but could be a powerful tool. I played around with the camera feature in class and ended up with a still image of my eyes overlooking the classroom from above. Only slightly disturbing but it allowed me to play around with other tools VPT offers like blur edge , masking, and blend modes. map_03_molina The idea I went into projection night with was: display a central video then surround that video with others and utilize blend mode and blue edges to make the videos appear as seamless as possible. The videos around my central video were the same composition but without the kinetic text. The only thing I didn’t catch was that there were a few seconds at one point in which main color in the central video changes to an orangey color but the surrounding videos stayed blue. This made for a little odd appearance but not a totally mismatched one. Something I wish I had thought about before going into Projection night was that my use of blurred edges would perhaps eat up some of the text in the central video. Simply, if I centered the text a little more in After Effects the blurred edges would have appeared a little bit cleaner. map_02_molina Overall I was very happy with the end product of my projection and happy with my planning. My video viewed to loop seamlessly- another aspect I enjoyed. It is difficult to be completely satisfied with any of my projects. I always go back and think, oh well if i did this… or did that.., but over all I got more done with the time I had than I thought I would. unnamed-1 Projector Night itself was not absent of pressure. The idea that I could not create the projection in VPT before hand did scare me. I prepared myself earlier and allowed myself more time before class to play with my projection in VPT and get it to look how I would have wanted but it is always different once the projector is on. I closed out and started over at one point because I became frustrated with what I had done. I wanted to create something that was interesting to look at more than anything. I hope all the people who experienced my projection felt the least bit interested in all the colors, shapes, and different moving parts of it. It helped to step away from my projection for a while and experience the projections of my  talented classmates. It was a fun and inspiring night. unnamed-2unnamed Projecting was a much more of a fun experience that I would have thought. I would have liked to play around a little bit more with masking and with creating shapes out of my animations as well. If I am able to project again in the future I would most certainly like to work a little bit more with the architecture of a building and space. I also enjoyed the concept that the viewer can become much more of a participant in the projection through the use of the live camera option on VPT. It is in this similar sense that the kinetic text is quite demanding. It tells you what to do, and I wanted to give limited space when reading it. It is simple, odd, and I hope these things were the littlest bit conveyed to all who viewed the projection.

Video Mapping: Projector Night

SAB_Projector_Night_01 In my experience, I enjoyed projector night. Preparing for the art show surprisingly wasn’t too stressful for me, though to be fair I did plan ahead for what refreshments I would bring as well as what I would use to decorate my installation. Projector night was not only a welcome break from conference work, but was also presented as an informal, casual event so I felt comfortable being a playful goober with my peers and classmates.
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Photo of Sabrina Holloway taken by Yuci

As for how I planned for the night, rehearsals as well as the content of my work played a  major part. Rehearsals gave me sufficient time to experiment with where to project my content in the building, as well as a chance to explore what my classmates were experimenting with in terms of location as well. With enough time to plan for the spot and to adapt my piece for that chosen spot, I felt prepared for the art show. In terms of the decoration aspect of my installation, I brainstormed what would match with my piece. Given that my piece was kinetic text with a strong narrative following royalty, I thought of a simplistic and inexpensive way to convey that. I changed the table that held the projector from a tool into a prop. So I covered the plastic table with red fabric I luckily had (beginner seamstress and fabrics galore) to cover the surface as well as cover the front of the table to hide the cords connected to the projector as well as my backpack. Also, I used scrap paper and hot glue to craft paper roses with text written on them and scattered the roses atop the table and pinned a handful around my projection to visually tie the installation together. SAB_Projector_Night_05 When the audience saw the text aspect of my piece, some of them read it aloud. I was flattered but at the same time embarrassed to hear my work be voiced by someone. I wasn’t sure how the audience would connect with my piece, though I’m glad humor was one of the results. The audience members were curious about the paper roses, especially when I mentioned that I hand-made them. SAB_Projector_Night_03 SAB_Projector_Night_02 Overall, I think my work came across pretty well, though next time I would project on a surface that is easier for legibility of the text, as well as lessen the amount of shape motion on the screen to allow for more room to see the kinetic text itself.

Video Mapping: Projector Night

Projector night was an extremely nerve-wracking experience for me. This wasn’t my first time presenting my art in an exhibition, but becoming involved in the use of VPT made it seem like a new experience altogether. There was so much to take care of; from setting up my projector correctly, to making sure my map was interesting and aesthetically pleasing, to making sure my laptop didn’t fall off of the table. Ultimately, though, I believe that it was a good experience, not only to become acquainted with video mapping, but to become more acquainted with presenting my art in an exhibition in general. Due to the several mishaps I had with acquiring the proper equipment to project, I had to miss all three of the projector night rehearsals. I did, however, practice mapping on my laptop. I also intended to overlap stock footage with my After Effects creations, but didn’t know that I wasn’t allowed to use them until Angela told me later on the night of the exhibition. In all honesty, without the stock footage, I didn’t really know what to do with my maps. I mostly just stuck to two predetermined maps I had for the whole night while shifting colors. projectornight6   I really enjoyed shifting the colors of the different videos I screened and explored the different effects of combining colors. I usually went by a pattern of analogous colors, as they are, to me, more calming to look at, but used complimentary colors as well. Along with the colors, I liked overlapping different videos or different parts of the same videos over each other. It made for a surreal, almost “trippy” experience. I wanted my maps to seem as if they came from out of this world, and to also bring a sense of inner calm to the viewer. (The window on the bottom corner didn’t bother me that much.) projectornight4 Since I was in a very versatile spot of the building, I also explored with mapping in the space around me. I enjoyed seeing how different one thing can look on several different “screens”. projectornight3 projectornight5 projectornight1 My inspiration came mostly from music. I wanted to recreate the calm and the awareness of my surroundings that I feel while listening to ambient music such as that by artists Casino Versus Japan and Tim Hecker. I was also inspired by 1960s psychedelic visuals…
"For My Right Damaged Eye",  Toshio Matsumoto (1968)

“For My Right Damaged Eye”, Toshio Matsumoto (1968)

…and the surrealist 1998 video game LSD Dream Emulator. maxresdefault Even if my maps weren’t the most dynamic, I think that my goal to create surrealist, colorful, and calming visuals was a success, especially with the help of maneuvering my projector into several different places.
My mom and my friend.

My mom, my dad (not pictured), and my friend came to visit me that night and give me much-needed support.

 

Video Mapping: Projector Night

  IMG_9478 Projector night came and went so fast! It was both nerve-wrecking and wonderful. It was great to show my family and friends some of the things I’ve been working on in Digital Tools for Artists. It was also a great culmination of my After Effects work and video mapping. I spent a lot of the night talking to my family and friends and mapping. I think that was supposed to be part of the objective; I still feel like I wish I could have spent more time experiencing what my peers had created! I heard theres was amazing work all around! IMG_9441 When I started video mapping in class I took my favorite video and was trying to transform it. On its own it has a nice visual effect, but I wanted it to do more. By chance I was playing around with the layers and placed the map into a cube. I was very pleased with the results. It gave my visual effects a three-dimensional quality. During the rehearsals, I then made multiple cubes of my video by constructing multiple layers and that really elevated my map! I was excited every time I did it. Though my map consisted of multiple layers, the whole map put together felt as one. The arrows of one of my video just melted into the other. map_1 It was a lot more nerve-wracking to map in front of an audience. My main focus was to map out different geometric shapes that would add a new dimension to videos that I already felt created optical illusions. My main focus was to map in geometric shapes. I noticed that they added a new effect to my videos. At the beginning of the night I started with a pyramid map and then switched to a single cube as the night went on. About an hour in I decided it was time to create a multi-cubed map. My family had actually showed up for the night and were kind of standing over me. They were asking a lot of questions and they made me a bit nervous. But some of my friends told me they liked seeing me map which made me feel a little better, but mapping in front of an audience was okay I guess. To be honest, I might have preferred to have the maps set up and then just switch between them (super Type A), but I guess the night was all about the process, and that’s alright with me (Type C). What made me nervous was that sometimes the layers can be finicky. For example, I’ll shape a layer into a diamond but sometimes the layer will invert and the video plays outside of the map and I can’t find the “drawcorners” and try to change it back. So then, I’ll have to delete the layer, but for whatever reason it’ll delete the layer that I made before the one I was working on, and that fact was what made me nervous! But in the end, it all worked out! IMG_9422 I thought my multi-cube map was successful with one of my videos, and because of that I decided later on in the night that I would see how it would look with another video of mine. It was very “trippy”, possibly seizure-inducing…!! Overall, it was very cool. The first video felt like the map was moving like a wave, or at times, like waves crashing into each other in the most seamless of ways. The map with the new video felt like it was spazzing out and then moving across the wall! It was both alarming and visually-pleasing, which made me feel like I effectively executed what I wanted. I wanted the viewer to feel a sense of shock but also mesmerization. map_2 map_2b It would have been nice to be in two places at once though. I liked my location because even if you were on the lower level or outside, my map could be seen and you didn’t have to be in my direct space upstairs to experience it. During the rehearsal I was playing around with different walls to map. In the entryway of Heimbold is a wall of wooden panels. I had taken my multi-cubed map over there to see how it would look. That was particularly striking because the dark space in between the panels created another layered effect over my map which was a surprisingly effective physical layer that added dimension to it. tri_warp_projection_reverse_allyson_panton   In retrospect I am very pleased with how the whole night went on. If I could do it again I would start out with the multi-cubed map and only change the video once instead of making 2 additional maps like I did. I guess it was cool to see how I created it and see the map take form and unfold! BUT I would have really loved to see my peers work more. I also might have set up the space so I could change location half way through the night to the entryway. The two hours flew by and the night was amazing, but so short! Overall, I’m very happy with my night and happy I got to experience it with loved ones :) IMG_9444   IMG_6220 2   I got meme’d (by Danielle Levy)!

Projector Night

Projector night, even for all its preparation, was something I didn’t expect.
My prop.

My prop.

At each rehearsal, I tried out a different spot in my area — the corner, in between the railings, the two walls created from the division of the archway — and on the last rehearsal finally settled on the spot above the doorway. I felt it created the best illusion out of all the projection spots: it became a colorful pyramid or architectural decor instead of just lights on a wall. Mapping for an audience felt much more stressful (I wanted everything to go smoothly initially, but felt even more pressure to do so with people), but also enjoyable. I was excited to show off my work to my friends and peers.
Experimentation with shapes.

Experimentation with shapes.

IMG_20170420_201628026 My work blended in the surroundings but the movement still catches your eye, so I wanted to do just that: take a familiar spot and have the viewer look at it more closely and with a different perspective. I was familiar with the software before projector night, but actually projecting it gave me a different perspective on how to frame my art and place it in reality. What worked was my mesh — I was able to place it in the exact same shape and location from rehearsal to the real thing. What did not work as well was my projector. I happened to grab a brand new projector on rehearsal night compared to the semi-new brand I had used for rehearsal. It was not bright enough, unfortunately, and I had to perform a swap which ate into some of my presentation time. Though the area was required to always be lit and my projection was slightly washed out most of the time, the new projector made it even worse. What surprised me was how my projector was not in the way too much. People walking on the stairwell and in front of the door managed to mostly not block the projection. Though I had many animations I liked, some of my least favorites were actually the ones that projected the best because of the bright colors. I also decided to use my patterns I had made and mix my videos with it because I included the patterns on my posters and felt it was false advertising if i didn’t include my patterns. I also brought my Kermit doll as a prop to put on top of my projector to distract viewers from looking straight into the light. Also frogs were heavily featured on my posters and I felt that a frog needed to be included in some step of my presentation. In the future I would like to include more work with live cameras and graphics combined.
Yes, this is the same audience member.

Yes, this is the same audience member.

Conference Project Proposal: Animate with Simple Elements

image4 (1)image5 (1)   I am taking Art and Perception class with Elizabeth.  From that class, I have learned artists such as Paul Klee and Wassily Kandinsky who were interested in flat paintings that are composed from simple elements.  I am inspired by how simple shapes can create complex and beautiful compositions. My another intention is to practice my skill of using after effect by animating paintings or a composition.  The process of giving a work the motion also challenge on my creativity.   Also, I want to animate something base on my previous work of abstract and simple shapes, inspired by Paul Klee and Wassily Kandinsky.  I believe that abstract shapes are much more compelling, natural, and sophisticated.  If time allows, I am also going to rework with my animation with interesting colors. For me, sometimes a better animation archives without too much design and plan at first.  I don’t want to set my mind on what exact design I will create.  I want to explore as much different effects as I want for my animation, just to experience different effects. The above pictures I took from my sketchbook was also my expression of lines and shapes in a repetitive pattern.  They are also going to be a source of my animation design.   1) first project: animating Kandinsky’s Blue: blue-1922.jpg!PinterestLarge Wassily Kandinsky, Blue, 1922 I am starting with expressing my imagination on different part of the drawing: the bull’s-eye like group of circles, the upheaving waves, the ladder-like line group etc.

Urban Installation: Jenny Holzer

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“For the Capitol”, 2007, Washington D.C.

American conceptual artist Jenny Holzer has created revolutionary urban installations that have been exhibited throughout the world, with a strong focus on visual displays of text in public spaces. Holzer is particularly relevant to the study of urban installations and public art, and has contributed to the ongoing quest to bridge the gap between the public and the private that is inherent to cities. The latest volume of the Urban Screens Reader, edited by Scott McQuire, Meredith Martin and Sabine Niederer, presents a collection of remarkable essays that strive to explore and challenge the nature of urban screens in modern cities. The first part of the reader offers a historical exploration of public media displays and urban screens. In his essay “Messages on the Wall: An Archeology of Public Media Displays”, Erkki Huhtamo discusses commercial billboards: “It really was a huge emblem supposed to imprint an idea – the trademark – into the minds of the passers-by.” (p. 21), and through her subversive artwork, Holzer seeks to counter the capitalist usage of billboards and broaden its social, political and cultural possibilities. By embedding her work in the urban landscape, Holzer transforms her art into a lived and shared experience. Through language, Holzer provokes city dwellers and invites them to be active participants of the city experience, rather than simple spectators of society as Guy Debord would put it. Holzer is best known for her “Truisms”, her statements that are somewhat self-evident, that she projects onto billboards, LED screens, buildings or historical monuments, through the most minimal, raw medium of text. Holzer first projected her “Protect Me From What I Want” piece in 1986 as part of her “Survival” series (compiled in 1983-1985). The piece was installed on an elevated billboard in Times Square in New York City, and the text is lit up by LEDs. The projection addresses, in an ironic yet authoritative manner, the power of consumerism and the frenzy it entails. Through this short and simple statement, Holzer acknowledges the overindulgence and excess inherent to modern society and capitalism. By projecting it onto a billboard in Times Square, Holzer directly challenges this society of consumption and spectacle that we live in. What is so fascinating about this piece is that Holzer succeeds in transforming a self-evident statement into a subversive work of art, by embedding it precisely in the representational emblem of capitalism that is Times Square. The success of this piece lies in Holzer’s achievement to both mock the global consumer as well as herself, through the most suggestive representative display of the advertising billboard. The form and content of the piece also represent a duality that is essential to the piece. The statement “Protect me from what I want” suggests society’s desire for excess, yet the form of the piece could not be more simple. These two elements complement each other and are what make this piece so great: the visual form informs the meaning of its content and vice-versa.
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“Protect Me from What I Want”, 1986, Times Square, NYC

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“Protect Me from What I Want”, 1986

Her project “For the City” (2005) is a series of light projections of selected poems by Wisława Szymborska, Yehuda Amichai, Henri Cole, Mahmoud Darwish, and other celebrated writers. The light installations were projected onto the Rockefeller Center and the New York Public Library. The poems were projected in motion, just like credits rolling at the end of a film, engaging city dwellers to interact with the piece by reading the poems as they moved. In this piece, Holzer displays the power of language through its highest form, poetry, using poems that speak of emotions of hope and pain. Simultaneously, Holzer projected recently declassified U.S. government documents onto the Bobst Library of New York University. By projecting these documents, Holzer speaks to the thin line that separates secrecy and transparency, as well as private and public. The texts projected were selected from the Freedom of Information Act passed in 1966, so here again, Holzer expresses a duality through the form and content of the piece. The name of the act, Freedom of Information, suggests the free access to information, and so, by literally projecting the act onto a public building in a public space, Holzer merges form and content in a way that is particularly subversive yet feels so evident. All of the light projections that constitute this series express ephemerality as the words scroll down the buildings, succeeding each other and then disappearing. Every city dweller that passes by these installations shares a similar experience, but may witness different phrases being projected. In that sense, the project really addresses the relation between private and public, through its content but also through the concept of individual versus collective experience. The project is public, yet one’s experience is unique and individual.
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Freedom of Information Act projected onto the NYU Bobst Library, 2005

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Poem projected onto the New York Public Library, 2005

Her project “For the Capitol” (2007) takes a similar form as “For the City”, composed of light projections of texts. The installation was composed of a series of quotes projected from the John F. Kennedy Center across the Potomac onto the greenery of Roosevelt Island in Washington D.C.. The selected quotes are from the two presidents, John F. Kennedy and Theodore Roosevelt, and scrolled down the greenery onto the water like film credits, just as in “For the City”. The quotes speak to ideas of peace, war, patriotism, the environment, governmental power, the responsibilities of a president, people’s responsibilities as citizens, and the role of artists in modern society. The ephemerality of the piece engaged the public to participate in it by actively reading the quotes, that strived to engender reactions. In this sense, Holzer’s piece aligns with Bourriaud’s view that Liliana Bounegru speaks of in her essay “Interactive Media Artworks for Public Space: The Potential of Art to Influence Consciousness and Behaviour in Relation to Public Spaces”: “Art, therefore, becomes in Bourriaud’s view an urban experiment, no longer something to be looked at, but something to be lived.” (p. 206) The ephemerality of Holzer’s piece is in that regard of essential importance as it suggests the experimental and social quality of the piece. The projection of the piece was not rehearsed or static, and was very much contingent on the presence and participation of the public.
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“For the Capitol”, 2007, projected onto Roosevelt Island

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“For the Capitol”, 2007, projected onto Roosevelt Island

Blackspace: Urban Obstruction

DSC_0105 The Black Space projects are systems that explore the constraints of darkness. My project plays on the idea of urban obstruction and access to public spaces. The projected video presents the reality of fenced open areas on the New York City Housing Authority properties. What should be accessible public land utilized by the affordable housing occupants turns out to be a long series of barricades wrapping around the buildings. While the video is projected, three lamps shine on the screen, making it invisible to the observer. The audience has to pass between the screen and the lamps and use their body to obstruct the light in order for the video of the urban barriers to be noticeable. In this project I continue to draw from my interest in architecture and urban design. The idea was born during lunch at the Office of Urban Design at the NYC Department of City Planning where I currently intern. A few urban planners were complaining about protected open areas in almost all Public Housing and expressed the difficulty of the ongoing conversation to remove the fences. In addition, I have been heavily influenced by my research on psychogeography and especially the book “The City As Interface” by Martijn de Waal. DSC_0110 DSC_0098 At the beginning my video was played through Processing and responded to mouse pressing. When the mouse was pressed, the program chose a random place of the video and played it from there. In order to challenge myself in developing a more self-evolving system, I altered the code. Once the mouse was pressed, the program chose a moment of the video based on previous input. First, when the mouse was pressed, it generated a random number from 1 to 5. Then it utilized the frame count at that moment to calculate the new start of the video. For example, when the random number generated was 1, the new start was calculated by subtracting the current frame count from the entire length of the movie and then by subtracting 1. Each number had unique operations attributed to them. That way the system has a degree of autonomy and choice as to what to reveal to its viewers. Running the project in front of a small audience in an isolated setting during the rehearsal was very successful. People were enjoying blocking the light and observing the video from that “obstructed” perspective. That position definitely focused their attention and allowed them to meditate on the video more than if it was projected regularly. I feel like the project would have been stronger if I had access to brighter lights. When none was covering the lamps you could still see a little bit of the video. During the show my work was challenging to enjoy. Due to constraints of space I had to constantly switch off my entire setting to allow other students to present their work in total darkness. As a result, my work was often omitted. In addition, there was very little space between the lamp and the video and it was difficult to encourage people to pass by it in a classroom/gallery setting. Moreover, altering the code made the video run very slowly and thus was harder to experience the urgency of the theme. In the future I would like to experiment with various spatial arrangement of the work as well as variety of obstructing lights. Perhaps adding colorful lights would enhance the experience of the work and make it more appealing to play with. Arranging the work in some sort of wide hallway or on the path to other works would also encourage viewers to engage with the system. Similarly, instead of using the laptop and its trackpad for pressing the mouse, it would be interesting to build a separate visually attractive devise of the same function that would invite the audience to influence the video. Lastly, developing a more successful code that could make the video run faster is recommended. Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 4.58.52 PMScreen Shot 2017-04-25 at 4.59.12 PM    

Conference Project Proposal: Found Poetry

My conference project will consist of two videos which utilize kinetic text and animation. The central theme is found poetry, or words found in the world and transformed into something poetic. They also utilize animation of shapes and figures to add to their visual interest.
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Still from ‘Fridge Poetry.’

The first video is titled ‘Fridge Poetry,’ and its inspiration is exactly that. I own a set of small fridge magnets, each with a single word printed on it, and my fridge is covered in odd poetic sentences created by my roommates and I. It always amazes me how limited words can combine to convey a new meaning. The video is intended to be a visual representation of a fantastical fridge, with the magnetic poetry as kinetic text being the focal point. I made around 80 individual word tiles, and I animated each one to appear as if someone was dragging it from its place lined up on the bottom of the fridge to form new poems. The pace of motion is varied, which I hope conveys the sense of an invisible someone thinking about what they want to write. To reenforce the fantastical element of a fridge that almost appears alive or slightly magical, I added a list of imaginary chores.
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Imaginary chores.

I may also add ‘living’ magnets, such as a flower magnet that unfurls its petals or a frog that hops around. I’m still thinking through this idea. This video focuses more heavily on the words than the second one, and its background is a static image of a refrigerator (my refrigerator in fact, photoshopped to remove the real, boring chore list and to create a blank slate for the animated poems to form).  
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‘My Never Sunshine’ projected onto a ceiling.

My second video, titled ‘My Never Sunshine,’ is a mashup of the songs “You Are My Sunshine” by Charles Mitchell and “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers. I had this idea because one day I got both songs stuck in my head, and thought that a combination of the two would work well. Since I’m not a musician, I looked on YouTube and found that in fact two artists, Justin Sinclair and Jamey Geston, had recorded a live performance of a mashup of the two songs. (Watch it here.) The concept of the video is to juxtapose the lyrics in the form of kinetic text with the recorded song. I scrambled the lyrics of “You Are My Sunshine,” jumbling the words within the song to create a new poem of sorts, and interposed it with the lyrics of “Ain’t No Sunshine,” keeping each song separate. My hope is that this will create an interesting cognitive dissonance for the viewer as they are reading one thing and hearing another, with both the visual and auditory elements strongly resembling the original song but not matching it. I also used different font colors to emphasize the difference between the songs. My rationale behind using black for “Ain’t No Sunshine” and yellow for “You Are My Sunshine” was to denote the absence or presence of sunlight. Here is a brief excerpt to give an example: Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone You are my grey, my only dear It’s not warm when she’s away You make me mistaken when skies are sunshine Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone The idea of a lack of sunshine led me to a background of clouds, which the camera appears to pan over as the video progresses. I wanted to create the appearance of drifting slowly through a skyscape. The background utilizes pattern, with the clouds forming a somewhat repetitive pattern, and some of the individual clouds themselves being made up of patterns. At strong beats in the song, I will add new visuals, such as a rain cloud, a rainbow, a sunburst or a bird flying. Despite the melancholy tone of the song and the lyrics, the overall effect is somewhat cheerful due to the use of bright colors and crisp, clean lines.
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Still from ‘My Never Sunshine.’

My motivation behind this conference project was to combine kinetic text with pattern, since they are the two parts of our course that spoke to me the most. Found poetry works well for me because I love words but struggle to create completely original creative content (I am more comfortable with writing essays than poems). I like that found poetry takes something already in the world and transforms it into something new and different but somewhat reminiscent of the original. I have also always enjoyed small pieces of found poetry in the real world, such as clever license plates, song mashups, bumper stickers, street signs and bathroom stall graffiti poetry. They have a surprising and whimsical effect that I hope to emulate with these videos.

Conference Project Proposal: Storytelling

SAB SovereignFor my conference project, I will make 3 animated texts in Adobe After Affects, each around 4 minutes long. The text in each animation will convey a short story in a poetry-like and narrative fashion. Each animation will also involve shapes moving across the screen to further convey the story being told. I will play with fonts styles and manipulation of the text to add a bit of texture to the animations. (i.e. play with font size, placement on the screen, and other effects like opacity) Also, I might add audio to each animation where I would sing the poetry as if they were lyrics to a song, but I am dedicated to that idea yet. SAB MazeMy motivation in creating this project is curiosity. I want to mix creative writing and poetry with the shape motion and kinetic text skill set I have gained in class. In the above image taken from one of my animations, simple rectangles are placed vertically and horizontally near one another to convey the illusion of a maze in a dark room. The text itself is bright yellow for visibility and because that is the color depicting the narrator and thus the narrator’s “voice”. The text itself is also placed in a way to movie the viewer’s eye through the maze as they read one word to the next to then form the full sentence. As some background information, kinetic text is commonly used in the opening credits or end credits of movies. For example, the famous artist, Kyle Cooper, has made several opening titles to popular movies such as Flubber starring Robin Williams, or the first Spiderman movie. In each of those movies, the text reflects the theme of the film–Spiderman focuses on the adventures of a man bitten by a radioactive spider, so when the producers and actors of the film are introduced, there are animations depicting the names of the people being caught in spider webs. Spiderman’s title sequence can be viewed on Youtube here. SAB SketchbookIn terms of my process, the above image is an example from my sketchbook on how I storyboard the animations. I jot notes for what I want to happen in each frame, and I sketch where I want the “characters” to be for each line of text. Though the character’s aren’t always on screen, this snippet of a scene does have the two characters present. In these four frames, the purple character narrates while the yellow character, the main narrator and the same speaker from the previous image of walking through the maze, walks along a half circle representing grass. A blue square represents the sky and a gray square that the purple character stands on resembles a dungeon that is mentioned and established earlier in the scene. Though the shapes are simple, they are still able to convey meaning to the viewer without needing to be realistic. For example, the characters are simply a circle for a head and an upside-down triangle for a body, but the viewer can still infer that the two shapes is a person who can speak, or narrate the story to the viewer themselves. As for the rationale of the project, in class I would encounter creative blocks. Animated GIFS were too short to fully deliver an impactful story, and shape animations lacked a guiding focus. I found kinetic text to be my strong suit in that I could combine my ability to tell stories (hence the conference title of storyteller, hur hur) and what I learned from the class. GIFs, while short, could give a taste of a story, a snapshot or a flash fiction, but not a longer narrative. Shape motions could give the sensation of movement and texture but lacked any narrative. Kinetic text, however, guides a story arc that is longer than a GIF, and is emphasized with texture from shape motion. In terms of the content, my stories may be rated PG friendly, but they are often bittersweet. I am usually inspired by antagonists from video games or novels that have a disheartening backstory and I enjoy channeling that sorrow into a story that reflects their perspective…which is often a sad one since they aren’t the heroes of the day, but the villains.

Conference Project Proposal: Interference

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Outside of Carlos Cruz-Diez’s Chroma Installation at the SCAD Museum

I will be making 10 animated gifs that will be focusing on color, line, and viewer perception. I want to manipulate viewer perception by creating movement/moire effects and producing an interference of colors.
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Serigraph from Carlos Cruz-Diez’s Chromointerference Exhibit

During a trip to Savannah, GA I went to the Savannah College of Art and Design Museum (SCAD Museum). It was there I saw an exhibition of Carlos Cruz-Diez’s work and learned about what he calls, “chromointerference”. He places colors side by side and their unique wavelengths add up to a new color, a color that isn’t actually there but only a perception of the eye due to interference and light. I’ve always been fascinated by optical illusions and graphic art. Most of my work is in neutrals, or black and white. I was very inspired by the use of color in Cruz-Diez’s work and want to implement more color into my work as well. Carlos Cruz-Diez worked as a graphic designer and taught graphic design for many years and was inspired by other op artists and studied the work of Georges Seurat and Josef Albers. Josef Alber’s wife Anni Albers was a great textile artist and printmaker and produced patterns with optical illusion effects, like in her Second Movement II.
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Anni Albers – Second Movement II

  Victor Vasarely has also been an inspiration for me during the course. I’m especially fond of his Delocta serigraph.
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Victor Vasarely – Delocta serigraph

  Graphically moire effects speak to me because they produce a sense of movement and sensation that isn’t actually present. As your eye moves across Second Movement II some tiles seem to recede and others move to the forefront. Also, there is a wave sensation that makes me quite uneasy, which to me, tells me her effect works! I too want to create a sense of uneasiness and motion like Anni Albers and Carlos Cruz-Diez. For me, I will be working more with lines though as opposed to primarily geometric shapes. My previous work and practice with chromointerference have informed me that the movement produced by moire helps to enhance the interference. With gifs, at least the ones I create, the movement is very fast paced. It’s very easy to perceive things being there when they aren’t actually. It’s only until you really take your time and study something that the truth reveals itself. By interchanging lines of orange and cobalt blue,  if small enough or far away enough in distance, the eye will perceive the color as pink. By interchanging lines of green and cobalt blue, under the same terms, the eye will perceive the color as turquoise or a light blue. I want to further explore this interaction in my conference work and also try and produce new interferences.
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Serigraph from Carlos Cruz-Diez Chromointerference Exhibit

My previous work in creating rhythms in tile and patternmaking has been “regular”. I hope that working to produce a moire effect will take me out of the regular rhythm. With this project there is so much that can be done outside of the geometric scope that I’m used to so I will try to also broaden my choice of rhythms. My first plan of action is to work on the colors and their interferences. I will use at least three colors in each gif and each gif will have different predominant colors. The world is my oyster here, so to speak, so in Photoshop I will be experimenting with different interferences. Only until I come up with enough different ones I will start designing my gifs. I like to sketch first before going right to creating in the software. So I will come up with different effects I want. Perhaps one will be more wave-like, another jump out at you, one appear to get smaller etc. By studying the work of op artist like Victor Vasarely, Bridget Riley, Josef Albers, as well as Anni Albers, and Carlos Cruz-Diez most prominently, I hope to not only be inspired by what different visual perceptions can be created but also create my own.
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Closeup of the outside of Carlos Cruz-Diez’s Chroma Installation at the SCAD Museum

I think my work as a whole will be very striking. I understand that Op Art is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I hope that by using more color in my work it will resonate more with a wider audience. I personally think that the use of moire effects, as well as, chromointerfernce will create a double visual effect that will be a little more different than what most people might see or think of as Op Art. This conference work will make me a better graphic designer, not only due to the graphic quality of the work but also due to the use of color that I’m not accustomed to and the emphasis of trying to work a little bit more abstractly. I think at least the chromointerference will encourage curiosity. That’s exactly what I like to do. I like to make work that makes the viewer ask “how?” as well as question the the work and themselves. I’m not afraid or upset when someone might say, “What exactly is going on here?!”.
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Serigraphs from Carlos Cruz-Diez Chromointerference Exhibit

conference project proposal

At the beginning of the term, when we watched art works of Motomichi Nakamura, I was affected by how he used his own culture as a source of material. In his videos, there is a thematic color spectrum of red black and white; which are important colors for Japanese culture. cini1 So for my conference project, I wanted to use the same idea for my own culture. I am from Turkey, and turkey harbors a great variety of Islamic and roman art. I am influenced by the tile forms called Cini, a style of ceramic glaze. Tiles have ottoman arabesque patterns such as tulips and cloves. Through my conference project I want to reflect the fluidity the tiles have by using after affects. I am using four primary colors; turquoise, red, navy and white and planning to redirect the lively patterns in the tiles with color changes. Screen Shot 2017-04-16 at 11.54.45 PM  

Radical Games: Master Cube

d1fd2907396e9a36752890bc8745a4c8 Master Cube is about a young man named Davis. Davis is a store greeter sick of his work and the people in town. He envies the heroes he sees pass through the store, taking what they please for their quest. Davis has very little for him in town, and tries to venture outside but the guards won’t let him, they say it’s too dangerous. He can leave if he can pay off the guards by working tirelessly as a greeter for hours and hours, the thought of which makes Davis want to blow his brains out. A robed figure calls out to Davis and promises to pay the guards for him if he signs his soul to him. He agrees and is told to seek out the great cube center, in the forest. He travels to the center, and is initiated into the Master Cube Society. To do so he completes 3 trials and then is sworn in by the leader. The leader tries to kill him for aligning with the cube better than he did. Upon defeating the leader Davis is summoned to the cube dimension where the master cube will change the universe for him in one way. Davis chooses to make the universe a universe where people will like him, and the cube makes everyone in the universe him.   IMG_20170306_155223 My game is radical because my goal with the game is to make the player feel that joining a cult is their best option.  Most people view cult members as aliens or freaks that must have been insane to give in to a cult’s ideology. I want my game to play with the idea that anyone could be put into a situation where they view joining a cult is smart of them. The life of the character Davis is unfulfilling, and players play games to fulfill needs. Basic needs such as wanting to have fun, or needing a distraction from every day life. This game initially does not offer the player what they want in the world to proceed or explore the world, and the fastest way out is to join the cult. Development is tricky. I’ve never been an artist with visual arts like drawing or painting and so the art design aspect of development has been tough if not overwhelming at times. Getting everything to look and feel right visually can be very frustrating. Luckily I’m used to using programs similar to Unity so that portion of development has been smooth. Unfortunately development rarely gets to building in Unity as the art still needs work! The ability to make pixel art that looks anything like what I want it to be has been the most surprising about my abilities to make the game. From paper game in class I’ve learned that my ideas are clearer than I thought they were visually, but I need to learn to better express my ideas so as not to confuse people as to what’s going on or going to happen. The biggest way my game says a lot with a little is the design of the player character. One look at him and you know he’s miserable and bored with his life and the people around him. I’m also trying to get the player to feel the way the character looks in the rather small space of a simple town store you’d find in most RPGs but rather than being the hero that comes and gets cool gear, you simply greet the heroes as they come in. The player can clearly see that there are others more important than themselves and so hopefully they will want to be more like the heroes and quickly realize how nearly impossible it is to do without some sort of outside help, or rather extreme patience.

Conference Project Proposal: Bueno, Claro Que Si

molina_roto My conference project will consist of three animated videos with a length of 3 -6 min each. I will be using kinetic text and rotoscoping in order to create a series that reflect on my heritage as a Cuban-American. Rotoscoping is the act of tracing/drawing onto each individual frame of a video in order to create an animation. In the past I have used rotoscoping by bringing in the video footage into adobe flash, creating keyframes, then drawing on another layer’s keyframes in order to make the animation. With this conference project I will attempt to use the roto brush in after effects instead in order to achieve the same outcome. My goal is that each animation have kinetic text with accompanying line animations. In the photo above the video layer is apparent, and so is the layer above it on which I have sketched out what I want to be presented. Then the video layer will be deleted, and I will be left with a mini animation. Each mini animation will then be brought into after effects and find it’s home in a video. I will be using a Wacom tablet to draw with, and will be collecting footage of myself, and friends in order to create the mini animations. Many of the animations will not have color except for a few. I want to concentrate on bringing the animations in and working it with text. I hope each will tell a story.
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Julia Pott, Belly.

Julia Pott makes surreal but beautiful animations. Her animations have much movement and incorporate a lot of different sorts of materials including real images. I want to incorporate some of what Julia Pott does in her animations into mine. I hope to work with more colors, incorporate real world images, and create mini animations that have a lot of movement to them. A lot of her work can be viewed on her Vimeo at:  https://vimeo.com/user2401669. sketch_molina The title of the Conference Project: Bueno, Claro Que Si, reflects what the project will be based on. The project will be based on my own personal experiences as a Cuban-American. Much of the kinetic text involved will be in my 2nd language: Spanglish, of course. Video #1 will be based more specifically on my experiences working in the sneaker department in a Macys where 90% of the customers only speak Spanish. Video #2 will focus on myself in relation to my parents and my grandparents and will be a better reflection on who it is I am. Video #3 will be a recounting of some of my grandparent’s memories of Cuba. Only video #3 will have a audio soundtrack. For video #3 I will be using footage I took of my grandmother retelling stories, some of this video will be rotoscoped, and some of the audio will be used. I have sort of storyboarded/ sketched out what each of the animation will look like. A sample of what this looks like can be viewed above. The end product, I hope, will be a bit of a mixed-media series comprised of three animations.    

Urban Installation: Candy Chang

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Candy Chang installing “Before I Die”, 2011, New Orleans

Artist Candy Chang has created a multitude of profound urban installations that reflect on the dynamics between community and isolation, and the ways “shared places can cultivate reflection, perspective, and kinship.” Chang is particularly focused on the relation between individual liberty and social cohesion, and has made great participatory public art works that seek to address this relation. With a background in urban planning, Chang has worked with communities all over the world, and approaches her art from a particular perspective that is not just of the artist. Her involvement in urban planning has forged her art in many ways that speak to the issues Martin de Waal addresses in his book The City as Interface (2014). In investigating the ‘parochial’ and ‘public’ domains, de Waal notices how “as a result of increased mobility and the individualization of lifestyles, parochial and public domains have started to overlap more and more.” (p.16), and he explores the role of neighborhoods in modern cities through those domains. In his chapter “The Neighborhood as an ‘Interface’ in Every Day Life”, de Waal quotes Kevin Lynch’s description of the behavioral and symbolic aspects of city dwellers and the spaces they dwell in, from The Image of the City (1960): “how city dwellers, from their everyday lives also attribute symbolic meanings to places.” (p. 50) This description is essential in understanding the socio-spacial dynamics inherent to all cities and their different neighborhoods. In her works, Chang strives to attribute particular meanings to places, by blurring the line that separates individual liberty and social cohesion. Chang’s installation “Before I Die” (2011) is a participatory public art project, through which she invited city dwellers to reflect on life and death, and share their personal aspirations, anonymously, but in a spirit of unity. This project came from Chang’s personal experience dealing with grief after losing someone she loved. Through this public piece, Chang aspired to connect with her neighbors and connect the neighborhood itself. The project was originally created on an abandoned house in her New Orleans neighborhood, which she covered in chalkboard paint. Over the paint, she stenciled the prompt “Before I die I want to _____”. The project was extremely successful and the wall quickly filled up with different yet passionate contributions from city dwellers. In fact, the project was so successful that 2000 “Before I Die” walls have been created since then all over the world in over 70 countries including Iraq, China, Brazil, Kazakhstan, and South Africa. This project is extremely powerful in the sense that it asserts how public spaces can become a platform for city dwellers to empathize with each other, even if anonymously. This project creates a communal bridge between neighbors and in a way resolves the predominant urban issue of finding the right balance between individual liberty and community building.
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City dwellers participating in “Before I Die”, 2011

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Completed mural of “Before I Die”, 2011, New Orleans

In her public installation “Grief is a Beast That Will Never Be Tamed” (2017), Chang addresses, as in “Before I Die”, the emotional concept of grief. This project came from the realization that modern society has completely turned away from displays of mourning and the contemplation of death, which leads many people to go through this extremely universal emotion in complete isolation. The project was inspired by the Crete myth of the Minotaur and the first installation was created in Heraklion, Greece, in 2017. This installation invites people to meditate on the concept of loss and grief and attempts to provide a public ground for shared experiences. The collage that accompanies the text is built from pieces Renaissance and Baroque paintings, including The Entombment of Christ by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri (1656); Salome with the Head of John the Baptist by Caravaggio (1609); and Michelangelo’s Pietà (1499). Here again, through a beautiful and poignant piece of art, Chang strives to reconcile the private domain of the psyche and public domain of collectivity through the universal experience of grief, death and life.
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Candy Chang installing “Grief is a Beast That Will Never Be Tamed”, 2017, Heraklion

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City dwellers walking past “Grief is a Beast That Will Never Be Tamed”, 2017

Chang’s installation “The Atlas of Tomorrow: A Device for Philosophical Reflection” (2016), is an interactive mural that offers an opportunity for self-reflection and guidance in a society where emotional well-being is far too often disregarded and swept under the rug. City dwellers who walk past this mural in Philadelphia, where the installation was created, are invited to spin a dial to select one of the sixty-four fables along the wall for introspective guidance. This project was designed through the idea of art as meditation, and is composed of numerous stories and artworks that speak to the inner turmoil one is often forced to experience alone, without guidance. The installation consists of over 200,000 dots finger painted by Chang and the Philadelphia community. In that sense, the creation of the project is itself an act of meditation on what it means to belong to a larger group of human beings, and how we all shape each other in various ways. This project is extremely touching and offers a hopeful perspective on the place of humanity in modern society.
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“The Atlas of Tomorrow: A Device for Philosophical Reflection”, 2016, Philadelphia 

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City Dweller interacting with the wheel, 2016

Through her artworks, Chang offers a creative yet highly philosophical contribution to urban life. In many ways, her pieces help develop a “web of public respect and trust”. (p. 52) It seems as though Chang aligns with sociologist Jane Jacob’s perspective: “Jacobs considered it important to achieve a certain harmonization between a neighborhood’s private, parochial and public domains.” (p. 53) Chang’s contributions to the urban landscape seem to offer a perfect balance between the private, parochial and public domain, through experiences that are highly individual yet extremely communal and powerful.  

Conference Project Proposal: Glitches

doodle 12doodle 14doodle 13 I am making a series of glitch art.  It’s made with the programming language, Java, and it’s made with the program processing.  The series takes patterns that I made with Gimp and shifts the pixels around to create a glitch effect.  The art pieces are constantly changing, and the original image is almost completely unrecognizable.  I wanted to make this series because I think glitches look really cool.  I wanted to learn how to make glitch art, and I also wanted to do more art with coding.  This project allows me to combine both programming and glitch art.  The project should be a series of short movies that show patterns changing into glitches.  The viewer should see the change in the pattern, and they should see the pieces change a few times throughout the movie.  My intentions for this project are to make interesting movies that surprise the viewer with unexpected glitches.  So far, I think that my works look good, but I also think that they can go farther.  There can be more changes in the work so that the glitching doesn’t stagnate at a certain point.  With more change in the movies, I think that the series will be interesting to watch.  I don’t know that the movies will look good in a typical sense, but they will definitely be fun and interesting to watch.  I don’t think the movies will necessarily look good because they are glitches.  Glitches aren’t supposed to “look good” but they are interesting.  I plan on trying to add some more things into the code that help change the art over time.  That way there is more change and the works look more interesting.  All of my pieces are made with a variety of colors and patterns.  Motion is used to change the are over time and add movement.

Conference Project Proposal: Music and Motion

Since the time in class we watched Motomichi Makamura’s video for the song “We Share Our Mother’s Health” by The Knife, I’ve been interested in creating motion graphics to go along with music.
A still from "We Share Our Mother's Health".

A still from “We Share Our Mother’s Health”.

  I have watched other animations to songs since and found inspiration in Faye Orlove’s video for the song “Townie” by Mitski. For my project, I have decided to create two 4-minute animations to go along with two tracks I will create in GarageBand. At the moment I do not plan on incorporating lyrics/vocals in the songs because I would have to find a vocalist. I plan on creating one track with the “classic” band setup (lead guitar, rhythm guitar, bass, drums) and one track that is more electronic and experimental. The animations will be made in After Effects. Though both of these videos focus more on creating familiar objects (medical tools in “Our Mother’s Health” and markers in “Townie”), I aim to make my animations more abstract and focused on motion graphics. I am interested in doing this because I’ve always had a passion for music and find animation that goes along with music to be extremely pleasing. Since these are just videos, the viewer should simply be able to play them and enjoy the audio and visuals simultaneously. I plan on aligning the animation with the beat of the music using markers at specific points. The lack of lyrics may cause problems as in these examples the lyrics heavily helped to distinguish the tone/focus of the animations, but I believe an abstract animation can be just as pleasing to watch. I plan on making the tracks first and then gaining inspiration from what I hear to make my animations. Obviously rhythm will play an important part in these animations, influenced by the music. Repetition will also most likely be important as I plan to repeat certain animations during parts of the music that also repeat, such as the chorus. The pace of the animation will probably be in line with the pace of the music. The other factors, such as color, scale, and pattern, will vary but are not as important at the moment. Side by side, music and motion appeal to the senses in a unique way that I hope to achieve through my project.