Monday, May 13, 2013

Second Life

Creating myself in second life was fun but difficult to make it look like me, with the given options.  I would have put my own face on the avatar but I have done that in the past playing Sims as a kid and now realize how weird and freaky that is!  

I took photos of myself at the ocean because that is where I grew up for the first 18 years of life.  The sea, boats, sunsets, diving, and anything else that has to do with living along the coast is a part of me.  I've never been to a light house, however.  But that's what's great about virtual reality, you can do anything you have never done before.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Project 6 Self Portrait

I am not the biggest fan of Blender.  In comparison to other 3D programs, it is unintuitive when it comes to basic movements and navigation.  Multiple times I had a tool not work at all and then I would restart the program (on three different computers) and it would finally work.  For being a free program, it is a wonderful tool when an intermediate user, in my opinion.  However, as a beginner, I was "frustrated" with not being able to portray my ideas as easily as in other programs I have used. 
Despite being new to 3D programming in this sense, I decided to rely heavily on my artistic side.  What I sort of like about the outcome of this project is how imperfect it is.  If I had been givena paint brush or pencil, I'll openly admit I would have a realistic portrait of myself as a result.  But Blender had stripped me of my talents and threw me into a world I am not familiar with.  So, in a sense, it took opening a new door (or clicking on a foreign program's icon) for me to realize I need an imperfect self portrait of myself- because who is perfect? 
After hours of many trial and errors in building a self portrait, and refusing to do a very simple representative item of myself, I decided to scuplt a face from a UV sphere...and after about twenty tutorials later, I resulted in the above images!
I almost left the portrait of me colorless, to portray that a computer would view me as a simple, gray sphere stripped of color- because we, as people, percieve so much more than computers.  However, I like an idea that I heard when watching The New Aesthetic: that we are presenting our culture to technology.  We have to teach technology our ways so they can reflect it back.  So I made the decision to make my representation of myself a gumby-green.  I loved gumby as a kid and it falls into the roots of digital media, stop motion with clay.  So I'd like to think of myself as starting in the roots of art and working my way out to the complex and infinite branches that it has to offer, whether it be digital media, painting, drawing, or any other form I'm interested in.
The only other 3D program I have worked with is SolidWorks, and the engineer side of me prefers that much more than Blender.  But maybe it's not so much the mathematics it involves but rather the fact that I actually know how to us it!  Blender, however, was a trip to learn and I enjoy the scuplting tool very much!

Monday, April 29, 2013

New Aesthetic Post

Divers Arrested After viewing so many of the videos, photos, and posts that display complex understatements, news information, artwork and other aspects involved in advancing technology, I found a post that particularly grabbed my attention over others on The New Aesthetic's blog. This post truly opened my eyes in how technology exists in the "real" world.

The short post merely informs the viewer that some divers were arrested near Alexandria by Egypt's naval forces because they were caught cutting a submarine line belonging to Egypt's main communications company. Aside from the politics involved in this post, as some saboteurs might be behind this event, what truly struck me was how technology is involved in our world today.

Every day we hop on the intangible waves of the digital world and communicate with someone at point B while we sit over at point A. Although it might occur ever so often to us that the internet and other digital forms of communications exist physically somewhere in this world (in this case, under the sea)--aside from the fundamental knowledge we contain on how it exists intangibly--we understand that it lives around us and encompasses our every day lives with accessibility.

What created an eye opener for me was reading about divers accessing the true source, or heart, of a certain communication and vandalizing it's existence. What seems invincible and always present in our lives suddenly becomes non-existent and lifeless. The figure of speech for cutting the cord suddenly becomes physically applicable and to something that seems it could never be tampered with. The fact that Egypt struggled temporarily with communications and bringing back a technology that seemed it would always exists brings a certain fact into my mind: that as invincible and autonomous as technology seems to be in this day and age, it is still fully dependent on human actions and our nature. One person's intention to rid this intangible phenomena can actually develop into the action of ending it's existence by the snip of a cable.

So what really struck me is we have progressed so much in technology that I, as a human being in this technical era, have become so dependent on it that suddenly when it doesn't surround me (or in this case a particular country) it seems unreal. I couldn't fathom what our world would be like if suddenly all forms of our communications and digital sources were "snipped" from our lives.

What has concealed itself as tangible instead of intangible over the years because we are so involved in it, blows my mind when it abruptly reveals itself as dependent on us instead of us being dependent upon it. It is a circuit of dependence. For something that we rely on so much, and even be intangible, to be taken away from me seems unreal. In my mind, or society's, it is expected that we will always be able to communicate with that one person at point B, thanks to the phenomena that elusively exists in our atmosphere.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Corruption of the Damned.. without the corruption or the damned...

This film was very time consuming due to not knowing (and still not sure) of how to save my progress to go back and work on it more.  So I ended up recreating this 4 times.  However, redoing it so many times led me to discover cool new tools and ways to express the style that George Kuchar shot in.  Finding the time where my friends and I were all available was difficult at first as well.  I want to thank them though for helping me out with shooting!! 

Some things I am proud of in this film are the spliced pieces I made using the "blade" tool in order to create the 60s style of choppiness.  Some frames would be skipped in earlier media and I was happy to create some of that effect on my own.  Although, I wish I could have added more of that choppy look in the beginning.

I also enjoy the audio use.  I chopped up the original audio and placed it in the appropriate places when a new scene appears.  I am happy with the mood each part of the audio I chose creates.  I am also happy with the Charriots of Fire audio I added.

I came up with the name to clarify that I don't nearly capture any of the concepts Kuchar did; it merely would have been too long and weird of a film.  Just this mini scene was already pushing the time limit we had.

Anyways, here is my piece, "Corruption of the Damned... without the corruption or the damned", based off of George Kuchar's "Corruption of the Damned".

Sunday, March 10, 2013

It was slow goings for me at first.  The hardest part so far is simply timing when my friends can go out and film with me.  I finally had a day to shoot a few clips, which I might go back and redo.  But so far I know exactly what I want to shoot, I have some clips, an understanding of the audio and editing I want to use, and a mini narrative I pulled from the hour film I chose.  Here are just a few of my edits so far.  I haven't compiled anything together yet and the audio is not what it will be (I just chose a random song from youtube to cover the random audio going on while filming), but I feel it'll be smooth sailing from here on out due to my extensive brainstorming.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Reading 2 Questions:

Did the creation of media as an art act as a catalyst for other arts (because of the competition) or did it temporarily slow their progress (because of the obsession with television and other medias)?

Are films that were produced mainly for product sale or mass consumption equally as much of an art as those created mainly for artistic purposes; or do medias created solely for artistic purposes hold more values conceptually?  Examples to discuss would be movies such as Pan's Labyrinth, Life is Beautiful, and Kill Bill vs. digital medias such as an exhibit called "Bloom" in the Nevada Art Museum that projects seismic activity in the form of playful, colorful, and popping circles, or "blooms"?

I chose "Corruption of the Damned" by George Kuchar because of the random scenes he creates.  I wanted a video that I have a lot to work with and found that in his piece.  The idea would be fun to play with as well!