Monday, April 24, 2006

Week 13

April 18, 2006

I was not in class this week because I had another meeting with a lawyer that I had to attend and took much longer than expected. The other times that you have class, I had class as well. I did however meet with Jess, Meredith, Derrek, and Julie to present my idea for my final project and get feed back from them. I was torn between my first and second idea and after meeting with everyone and getting their perspective it seemed like everyone thought my second idea was stronger.

Research Video Ideas

My first idea is to have two separate scenarios going on that don’t really have to do with each other, but they will have the same characters. Each sequence will have voice over commentary. Having the voiceovers mixed up so that they do not match the actual scene they are describing will convey the confusion. This will make the viewer question whether to believe what they are seeing on the screen or what they are hearing. The first scenario will be surveillance. First of someone entering a stir well and walking up two flights then turning into a long hallway and the camera will be in the middle of the hall way so it is in front of the subject and then behind to vary some camera angle. The subject will turn and look behind and then back down at a piece over paper as if directions. They will play with the piece over paper turning it over and squinting to try to make out an unclear number and maybe make a phone call to try to get a hold of someone for clarification only to get a busy signal. They will walk to one end then back to the other of the hallway, attempt a couple doors that will be the wrong number and then locked. Finally, the subject will go down one floor enter the hallway and again look both ways start one way taking a few steps look at a door number and turn the other way again try a door ask for someone when the door is opened, and upon finding that that person doesn’t live there they will give up and just walk back down the hall way. The other scenario will have someone walk up to a vending machine or a food counter and look at the menu or what is in the machine and start to go for one thing and then another and another before finally choosing one. If ordering at a counter he subject would stand in front of the menu and question different options, “this sounds good or ooo that sounds good, or oh what about that?” Then, they will go to order start ordering one thing then change or ask a question, answer it themselves, and order something else. Because of the constant change of mind and talking quickly, the person taking their order and even the viewer will get confused in the visuals. Keep in mind that the voiceovers will not correlate.

My last idea is to take pictures of a bunch of road signs starting with simple ones and have all the images the same as in the sign in the same place and the back ground the same (i.e. sign on the right of image not centered and surrounded by trees). I will record in surveillance a busy intersection with cars going all different directions (i.e. the light next to Shaw for Comstock and Euclid in the middle of the afternoon or the light next to I-81 and Adams Street). I will start with a slow pace of the simple signs and the intersection calm and then build up pace with the intersection more busy and the signs will start to move so the viewer has to look for them rather than them always knowing they are on the right side or something. The signs will also get more confusing. There will be sounds of cars and honking and all of that as well. I will end by zooming in on a sign that says “Be Prepared to Stop” because I will build up speed an suspense and then just stop providing no resolution to make the viewer confused and questioning what is next. For this, problems that could arise are not getting good footage of the intersection at key times as well as fitting in the signs in a way that will flow. I’m not sure if I will use still images of signs or actually video them. This idea and the one prior I think are my strongest ideas and I’m not sure which I like better or will present the feeling and effect of “confusion” most successfully.

My last idea is to play around with the camera angles for effect of confusion. I will have the camera on its right side, upside down, and then on its left side, but will not have it straight up and down at all. I will also alter the white balance to give some distortion to the images. In this, the footage will be some surveillance of somewhat random things that do not have any relationship such as having the camera on the ground to watch some feet going by and people smoking at night and zooming in on the smoke. A problem with this is that it could be hard to make it flow having the different clips.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

6 Important Things Learned

This semester I have learned so much about art in this class. In the first week when we took the quiz to find out what kind of learner we are I found that I am more of a sequential learner. I some what was aware of this before because I know that I like things organized and in order, but knowing this for sure and have suggestions in summary really pointing out that I like things to be visual, but I like them oraganized and not just thrown together. This has come through in my projects so far this semester as I almost always have my projects organized with a general progression and don't really have an understanding or like very abstract art. I have learned a great deal from our critiques because it is the first time I have really been in a class where majority of the discussion of work comes from the class and our peers rather than just having the teacher give their imput and move on. I have learned to be analytical of other peoples work as well as my own. By participating in the critiques I have gotten better about putting my thoughts into words for other people to understand and have a dialgue about rather than just keep them in my head and listen to others interpretations. Looking at other peoples work and really paying attention to the small deails has also made me pay more attention to my own work and I think it has improved. I have heightened my senses for sound and pictoral elements to be able to add to discussions in critiques. I have also learned the importance of the behind the scenes elements of design that I never noticed before. I have learned to pay attention and notice the relationships of lights and darks, colors, and lines as well as the placement of the objects within the frames. These small elements never would have jumped out at me before, but now that I notice them, when they are executed they pull a piece together and make it flow much better. I learned to work with the different equipment that was new to me. I had never worked with an MDR, video camera, or digital camera other than taking pictures with friends for fun. I had never worked with any of the computer programs we used this semester such as iMovie and Sound Studio, so I learned how to use them. I really enjoyed working with iMovie and seeing how you could pull together a bunch of still images and make them look as if the image is truely moving as if it were a video.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Week 12

This week we worked with the video cameras more and we able to play around with specific elements that make the footage more interesting. I learned the importance of the camera angles, zooming, lighting, framing of the subject, movement. At first I thought this assignment to play with action figures was pointless, but it allowed us to focus on these aspects of film and through the multiple attempts and the changing of characters so to speak. This chance to be playful with our angles, and the content allowed us to explore and become comfortable with the camera for our research project. I learned how to alter technical components of the camera to make the images more clear and interesting with the white balance and how important it is to change it whenever the situation changes. I didn't realize that you needed to change it when you go outside or back inside or even just in a shadow; I thought that once you set it when the camera was on it would stay set until you turned it off. Also, I learned how to import the video by connecting the fire wall cord, make sure the iMovie button is on "camera image", have the camera qued to the start point of the footage to be uploaded, press the import button on iMovie and the play button on the camera, and then when the footage selection is finished press the import button again. I learned how important brainstorming before starting a project is and how indepth you need to be sometimes after seeing scrapbook and photo album of the visiting artist. I am struggeling with where to go with my research video for our final project. My topic is confusion, but I'm not sure how to convey it in video. I am not familiar with using a video camera, so I'm really unsure of how to use it. I had a few ideas written out for class today, but they were very sketchy and not fully thought out ideas. It was very helpful to break into pairs to bounce ideas off of someone else and get feedback and just have another persons ideas to think about seeing how they would convey my topic.

Week 11

This week I learned to really see other people's work and tried to pick out some of the little details that were intended, but maybe are not obvious or just looked over because they are seem routine such as Danyelle's attention to walking down the stairs with the left foot taking the steps each time and the right just following rather than taking the next step. It is interesting to see how each person's research subjects are conveyed in different ways in each new medium. I enjoyed the the longer crit today because it allowed us to talk about the work longer and having people talk about their own work a little bit more extensiveIy than before. I learned to listen to more peoples input and hear how other people interpret or react to the pieces or specific elements of them. I'm happy with my research stills piece, but we didn't get to mine in the crit today. I struggled with it for awhile, but I think it was successful in the end. I used alot of effects to distort the images more to add to the confusion of the varying images. I'm interested to see the reaction from other people next week.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Week 9

Time Codes For Video:

Walking from College Place Angle 1 00:00:00 - 00:01:38
Walking from College Place Angle 2 00:01:38 - 00:05:06
Over Looking Statue in Middle 00:05:06 - 00:07:43
Over Looking Statue on Side 00:07:43 - 00:10:16
Looking Down on Calc Clinic 00:10:16 - 00:15:38

This week I learned more about paying attention to the visual aspects of the images with lights and darks appealing to the asthetics of the video along with the sound relationship. I learned how to use a video camera changing the white balance and altering the microphone wind screen and other menu settings. Also, I learned to change the angles of the camera playing around with making a servailence video so that the subject matter is interesting when you are not moving the camera at all for the whole 5 minutes.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Week 8

This week I learned about the gray areas with the combination of sound and images or movies. Watching DJ Spooky's "Rebirth of the Nation" was a good example of this. Talking through it in our different groups and analyzing his work also made me more aware of aspects I had not picked up on such as the relationship of the hip/hop sound along with classical orchestra sort of foreshadowing the growth and evolution of black culture today and the creation of hip/hop. I learned how to import sound into iMovie to make it correlate to the sequence of images. I learned to use the effects to change the images and use transitions.

Reading Questions: "Speed" by Oliver Sacks

1. Sacks' describes conscious perception with photography and still images. He talks about how he focused on a fern taking pictures hourly to see the uncurling and curling of it over time, which would take takes, but with the images he was able to put them together in a flipbook and make the transition look as if it only took seconds. In relation he talks about shooting a hummingbird in succession capturing the individual flutters of the wings going up and down. This relates to frames because he was able to slow down and seed up real life motion by capturing the movement in numerous individual frames and depending on how they are put together and at what speed they are shown they either slow down the movement or make it go faster.

2. This concept of controlling the pace of the frames can be carried over to our videos and how the viewer experiences our video because we can change the speed to which each image is shown making it slow and on the screen for a couple frames or seconds so the image is completely visible for the viewer, or we can only flash the image for a single frame or only a few so the view only gets a quick glimpse of the image, but may not be able to completely grasp the full image or the detail. With this we are able to distort the viewers sense of time by making something that would normally take a long time only take a couple seconds as with the fern, or make it alot slower as with the hummingbird.

3. I can't find any quote or refernce to Jameson...?

4. The power of intense attention has a strong influence onf how we experiences the rate of time. As Sacks says, when we are aware of time as when we are bored and pay attention to the passing of time it seems to go much slower, but when we are involved or engaged in something, time seems to fly by in a sense. With a boring class or watching a movie that is of no interest to you, you look at your watch and your attention drifts to other things or your mind wanders and you wonder how much longer is this going to be focusing on your freedom at the end and it seems as though that class or movie is so much longer than it acutally is and can feel as though it even doubles in time. However, time never changes. On the other hand, when we are doing something we are enjoying like at a party or engaged in a converstation with friends or watching a good movie where we are sitting on the edge of our seats awaiting the next event, time seems to go by so quickly and you can't believe the event is already over. This is what he means that intense attention can make time go fast or very slow.

5. The concept of intense attention seems similar to "the zone" article. The idea of going into the zone you loose grasp of your surroundings and block out all other things around you and are totally absorbed in whatever that thing is you are doing, but if you are not focused on that item, then your environment can serve as a huge distraction.

6. Michaux's theory of how we experience dreams comes through his referense to the use of LSD and high when you are on them as you feel like you are going 1000 times your normal speed in your thoughts. His theory is that our dreams are able to move at a much faster speed than we do when we are awake because in dreams we are not confined to any environmental or realistic boundaries of rational, but instead we are free in our imagination.

7. Michaux's theory of how we experience dreams relates to ambiguity because ambiguity is our creation when we are about to use our imagination without any constraints. Ambiguity is the creation of what we invision as the LSD high, but without the acutal use of any substances, but just the confusion, fast pace, and creativity.

Week 8: Stop Motion Crits

March 7, 2006

It is prety fluid it was a really cool effect that you had with the figure drawing.
The naration was that it told the story of a subject and it being drawn and then the story comes full circle and the starts to dissapear.
My gut reaction was that this was really interesting it reminded me of a music video of incubus with the figure drawing him self then turning in to the drawing. over all i think it turned out very well.
---Derrick Chafin

I really like it. I find it creative especially with the reversal and julie drawing backwards. I think that it was a very creative idea. Also not only is this a fluid piece but it shows a narrative structure. It tells a story, a person is being drawn line by line and then once the sketch is basically finished the images start to dissapear. I find this very amusing b/c as an artist I sometimes feel like this happens to me (in drawing class). I draw an image and finish it yet after i'm done I have to start all over again and produce another sketch. I feel like it is a neverending process and that I am not really accomplishing anything, b/c I have to start all over again.
I like how you focused in on specific parts of the drawing at times, it created a nice variation. The focus is also very crisp.
-Meredith Banzhoff

i really like the subject matter. i thought it was very creative. it had a flow to it and didnt need to be as fluid as some others. it have a very cyclical stucture, starting and ending at the same palce. i loved that about it. the lighting was good too.
~Kieran Carmon

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Week 7

This week I learned how to change the white light on a digital camera so that the pictures show up with true color starting with a true white, which also improves the contrast of the photographs. I learned how to use iMovie. I learned how to import digital pictures into iMovie and how to put them together in a sequence to make it appear as if they are actually moving although they are only stationary images. I had fun playing around with the filters and changing timing sequences to make images move quickly or slowly for varying effects.

I shot a total of 158 pictures, but I only used 83 in the final project. I noticed that each picture had to be shown for about 10 frames for you to be able to see the image and have it still look like it is moving. For some pictures I had them stay for longer. Some pictures were visible for 20 frames or so. I took risks with changing the timing of some of the pictures. Some a few pictures only flash for 3 frames while the rest show for about 10 frames and then for most of a visual some pictures were shown for 20 frames. I also played around with making the sequence of pictures come in a round as it started and ended at the same point. I think I could have maybe played around with some of the effects for this, but I liked it being plain and instead of focusing on the effects, you notice the images more. Also, I think I could have improved it if I had had more pictures of progression of the drawing to make it look more fluid.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Week 6

This week we learned to use the entire studio period as to work on our final research sound project. I learned that I need to focus my attention better and not take such long breaks. I learned to focus on the overlapping of my sounds and narration for better execution. I learned to play around with having sounds over lapping, but having different sounds play through different speakers simultaneously. I also learned how to make language and words to amplify the sounds they are with because in the past projects we were not allowed to use any language, so I enjoyed playing with all of that.