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Dijital Pasaj

Digital Studio students are in-process on a new project called Dijital Pasaj, (Turkish for Digital Passageway.) Each student chose a site in Duluth to document + transform into a short digital narrative, imitating the technique of rotoscoping as a unifying visual style. Inspiration for this project comes from contemporary films which use digital paint to animate live action photography. (see: Waking Life)

view images from our process here:
http://www.d.umn.edu/~jrock2/pasaj_process/

This project is collaborative and explores the idea of random access in digital media. By random access, we mean: a digital experience that offers the visitor ways to navigate through it randomly, at their own pace and order. This opportunity is commonly found on websites, which do not demand we navigate sequentially. Our class is devising an online experience that will allow students on the other side of the globe to visit our unique version of Duluth Minnesota. Visual artifacts will lead to specific locations in our city. Visitors to the site will be able to move through this digital environment, accessing images and short quicktime movies that offer a personal vision of life here. Students are investigating digital formats very common to their experience : video game interfaces, websites and dvds. All of these represent some form of random access, and offer new levels of customized choice to digital audiences.

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interface design by Gen Johnsen + Ivana Savic

Dijital Pasaj Website... in process...coming soon at
http://www.d.umn.edu/~jrock2/dijital_pasaj/


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Gig Night story by Ben Luoma

This interactive project is part of our exchange with Turkish students in Ankara, offering them a quirky view of our city. They will be able to access the website, clicking spots on the map interface to download the short Quicktime movies that take them on a tour of offbeat locations around town.

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Lift Bridge story by Matt Mulliner


The Video + Animation + Games Symposium was hosted by UMD's VizLab in the Kirby Ballroom this past Friday. Students from our campus (and from the Duluth community) mingled with presenters from Minneapolis to share knowledge and enthusiasm for these digital media artforms.

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Interactive exhibits and “hands on� demonstrations were featured at the Video+Animation+Games Symposium, including a sound design experiment station, hands-on video production and filming techniques, demos by Apple, Maya and 3D Studio Max trainers, a game lounge, Kirby Game Room demos of Dance Dance Revolution, Halo, Fight Night and demos of student-made games. Noon keynote speaker Lane Raichert is a Minnesota native and creative and production veteran in the TV animation and computer game business.

I gave a presentation about our Dijital Pasaj project, and students from my classes demonstrated their work for interested viewers. Right now we have no department or academic major (that I am aware of at UMD) dedicated to Video + Animation + Games even though these art forms are so ubiquitous in contemporary culture. Our era won't be known for its great contribution to stained glass, or bronze sculpture or fresco painting...

So, we are opening our eyes and minds to the potential of new creative forms that are driven by innovations in digital technology and a public hungry for customizable gadgets and entertainment. Although we do not offer a major in game design or a class in animation, we do teach several classes at UMD where we try to integrate concepts from these disciplines into creative projects.

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