March 2010 Archives

Weekly Photos 7

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Shoes I tie dyed / tossed a checker pattern on for a display at work.

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Geese at the dam

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Weekly photos 6

More from River City Rhythm's home show.

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Video Response

The film I decided to write a response for was a Japanese animated film entitled, Howl's Moving Castle, based off a novel of the same name. The animators stray away from the typical anime film with both the setting and color choice. They use bright, pastel colors such as pink, blue and yellow, against pale, painted backgrounds to help the characters pop out from the background.
The camera angles vary from the perspective of Sophie and that of the world around her. When she is being intimidated by the soldiers, the "camera" shows the men from her height. This creates the feeling of intimidation, and being closed off from any exits. There are also a lot of over the shoulder shots of the characters, as the oil creatures begin sneaking up on them.
The animators tend to show shots from the perspective of the character a good deal of the time, as shown with when Howl and Sophie first take flight. They show a shot of the two's feet, floating in the air, looking down at the people below. It helps to portray the feeling that it's a kind of scary situation, while the bright colors are able to offset that into a light, almost whimsical feel. By using the brighter colors and less shadow, the animators are able to portray these uneasy situations into a more young person friendly atmosphere, while still keeping the original message intact.
Also, by using the perspective of the characters with the camera angles, it helps to make the viewer insert his or herself into the film as one of the characters. It's a very effective way to make the viewer care about the characters without using dialogue, or using a forward exposition to give the life story of the characters.

China Exhibit Response

We were asked to write a response to a piece of art from the National Art Museum of China. The piece from the Synthetic Times exhibit I chose to write about was called "Eye Contact, Shadow box 1".

http://www.mediartchina.org/hte/eye

The piece features eight hundred simultaneous videos of people "... lying down,
resting". There's a motion sensor in the piece. When a person walks near, all of the videos come alive, and stare at the viewer. It is an interesting play on one of the basic principles of art; voyeurism. The point of most pieces of artwork is for the observer to play a role of someone looking in at a scene, while the people in the scene are unaware. I think it's a great play on the simple idea. Having a piece of art that is "self-aware" and able to look back can bring a sort of discomfort to the viewer, in a new way different from most pieces.

Most of the pieces within the exhibit seemed to illicit fear, or discomfort in some way. It was refreshing to finally see the tables turned on the viewer. The people in the videos also go back to sleep once the viewer walks away. It almost brings in its own viewers. One person goes over, becomes surprised, and leaves. Another person sees their reaction from afar and decides to investigate for themselves. They reach the piece and are surprised by the change.

The cycle goes on as the piece draws people in one by one. I've never had the chance to witness interactive art pieces, but after going through the site, I was very intrigued by the innovative thinking coming from the artists, and how the science of robotics can be utilized to create something aesthetically pleasing, rather than just creating a piece of machinery.

Weekly photos 5

Photos I took at River City Rhythm's home show.

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Three images assignment

For this piece we were supposed to use three different photos to create an image of ourselves.ab-23.jpg

Robots in Love

Flipbook I made using Photoshop and Final Cut.










Weekly photos 4

Finally got a good picture of Inky, the black cat.

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Night photo at the Anoka Dam.

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Edible hibiscus in champagne. It kind of tasted like an organic fruit-roll-up.

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