Drawing Machines: Machine Image

These pieces explore the meanings of regular imagery and objects through glitching. Over the course of this class thus far, we’ve explored different ways of corrupting and glitching videos and images digitally and with the help of machines. My images are from an array of these techniques and projects we’ve been working on this semester, and they all have different visual qualities as well as motivations and meanings. I’ve included two scans that involve a lot of machine influence as opposed to an image taken with a camera. The others are screenshots from databending and rescanning projects.

The projects we were assigned in class gave us the freedom to create our art from whatever materials, videos, or techniques we wanted. The motivation behind each image is specific to the individual project, but for most of these projects, I aimed to convey some kind of nuance with the original object or image I glitched. With my databending videos (with attached screenshots), my goal was to edit and glitch seemingly normal or pristine images to reflect a deeper underlying idea about the imperfections or issues behind these images. For example, glitched imagery of the ocean can reflect the impact of pollution in the ocean or the aspects of the ocean unknown to humans. The glitched video of Tonya Harding’s ice skating performance reflects how hard her life was despite her fleeting success on the ice. The scan of the Empress tarot card expands the card’s tarot meaning of divine femininity, which can be seen through the scanning and rescanning of the female pictograph. 

With rescanning, we had the liberty of recording and editing videos, while with databending we altered other ones. With the scanners, we created our own visuals while experimenting with the machine’s influence on our images. My process with all of these was mostly trial and error: I would start out with a more vague idea, which would change and shift as I attempted to get the desired result. When I got unexpected results, it inspired me to try different things, and the process would change unexpectedly. My favorites at the end of scanning sessions would end up being ones I did in a spur of the moment as opposed to the straightforward ideas I had going in.

This project was a lovely way to express myself. Glitch art is a very interesting process that allows you to experiment a lot with your art while also being able to stay specific to your initial ideas. The spontaneity of the inspiration that came from this art was very valuable. It helped me to feel like a more creative person and made me excited to continue experimenting in this class.

Author: Aysu Aricanli