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May 11, 2006

Final Project


For my final project I drew stensils in Photoshop and used them to paint the images on to cloth.

I didn't do much online research for this project because I already had some ideas set in my mind. I wanted the images to be simple and semi-abstract. I also wanted them to by "my style". It was difficult to come up with images to put on my clothing becuase I like everything to be very plain. I was trying to stick to only nature imagery, however I did allow myself to push this boundary a little.

Stensil making was very difficult for me because a lot of the images I had in mind didn't make good stensils. It is tricky to find create stensils with any detail at all without having floating pieces. Originally I had intended to use some of my photographs to make stensil by making the photos extremely contrasty. I found that this was a dead end. Then I decided to try my luck at drawing stensil in photoshop, I had a little more luck with this. I haven't ever drawn on a computer before so it was sort of a challenge, but I made due. I also had trouble cutting the stensils out because I haven't ever used razor blades for this purpose before. I bought four different kinds of clothing paints (one a spray paint). I made a test strip for each, waited 24 hours for the paint to dry, and then washed the strips. After multiple washings all of the paints started to wear out. I went through this process with two other paints before I found one that I was happy with. It was tricky to paint on some of the fabrics that I used because they didn't absorb the paint very well and they stretched while I was applying the paint.

Even though I had a lot of difficulties with the process and the materials I was happy with some of the final images. It is really rewarding to work this hard on a project and end up with something that you like.

May 1, 2006

Charlotte Davies


Charlotte Davies is a Canadian artist known best for her work with virtual reality. She has studied many areas of liberal arts and has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Before moving into work with virtual reality she worked with a variety of media including painting, filmmaking, and animation. In the mid 80's Davies put these endeavors on hold and began exploring computer technology as a means of creating virtual space. At this point she became the founding director of Softimage and helped this company become the world's leading developer of 3-D animation software. This software has been used to create effects in such films as the Matrix and Jurassic Park.

Davies' digital art incorporates "3-D localized sound and user interaction based on breath & balance." Many people that have experienced Davies' virtual reality spaces have commented that they have a "powerful effect." Some still-frames of Davies virtual reality work can be found in the book Digital Art by Christiane Paul. Her work is under the category of Digital Technologies as a Medium. I really like the still-frames in the book. The images are interestingly strange and abstract to the point where I wonder what some of the shapes are. I would really like to experience Osmose because I have a stong feeling of connection with nature and it would be interesting to experience this type of space virtually. I would really like to experiment with this type of work. I'm so used to seeing framed art that has only visual appeal. It would be exciting to create work that addressed more of the senses.

The Mirror of Matsuyama



A digitally narrated version of the old Japanese legend "The Mirror of Matsuyama."

I searched for a long time before I came across this legend. It was difficult to find a story that could be told in 10 frames without any words. After deciding that this was the story that I was going to use, I did a lot more research before I was able to create the imagery particularly the clothing.

I wanted the story to be easy to follow even though there was no text. I also tried to keep the imagery interesting. I struggled with a balance between variety and unity. I felt that it was important to have a mix of close-up scenes and far-away scenes in order to keep the viewer interested. At the same time I wanted to make sure that there was still unity between the frames so that they would be identified as a series.

I decided to draw almost all of the imagery. This was a huge challenge for me because I have never had much skill in the drawing department. I figured that this would be a good opportuntiy for me to stray away from my comfort zone and try something new. However, I did allow myself to incorporate some of my photographs as background imagery.

I am pleased with how this project turned out. However, it is a little akward for me to view this as my work because this is the first drawing project that I have completed. I feel that this project is a successful digital narrative because I have asked many people without previous knowledge of this legend to view this series of frames, and they have been able to follow the story.