Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Human Condition

          After creating the found footage video, being able to shoot my own video seemed like it would be easy. However, it was not. Well, it wasn't until I found my concept. I decided to look into the concept of the human condition, particularly focusing on curiosity, isolation, and a fear of death. The human condition is supposed to surpass all details like gender, race, and class; it links humans together. What excited me the most about this project was the cooperation I received from my friends. Two people assisted me in the film, Marissa, the actress, also offered to create a small original score for the film with harp. Christy, another friend and vocalist, also offered to collaborate in the musical piece. I feel very lucky that they lent their musical art to my short art film. I may not have used as many filters and transitions as I did in my found footage film, but I do feel like I pushed myself further in other ways using the Final Cut Pro software. I especially appreciated the opacity and overlay features for this project, as I feel it allowed me to express something that would have been potentially difficult in the previous versions of the software. If I could change anything, however, it would be I would have remembered to remove the actress's keys, as they advertise Lawrence University, which places too fine a point on her location, removing ambiguity.

I Want to Line the Pieces Up

I Want to Line the Pieces Up is a short film about the human condition. Specifically, it focuses on the ideas of curiosity and fear of death, ideas that are very much a part of this concept.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Appropriate Appropriation

          From the beginning, I had a clear concept of what social issue I wanted to critique in my video. I chose body image in women. However, as soon as I knew what I wanted to do, I realized all of the problems I would face. How do I appropriate without stealing? Is that under five seconds of that song? What if someone already remixed this, do I need to remix it further? It seemed a daunting task to make such a short video. A question I found myself pondering often during my process was how changed and broken up do sound clips need to be to no longer be considered the originals, as I did not want to infringe on the many copyright laws that exist in this day and age. As Lawrence Lessig states, "We thus live in an era of "illegal art"-not because of the political message of the art, not because of its morality, but because to use and reuse without permission is deemed a crime." I focused a large amount of effort into making sure I stayed within legalities during my process, but I learned you have to be very mindful and always paying attention. I agree copyright should protect artists and people, but then again if the material is changed sufficiently, I think artists should be able to use more than a measly five seconds. Lawrence Lessig also wrote, "The mix produces the new creative work-the "remix."" My question as an artist is still the same: how do we properly remix media to create art if there are laws at preventing this every step of the way?
          Copyright issues aside, I also wasn't sure I would be able to completely avoid the PSA feeling while making a video about a social issue. My art does not normally focus on issues like this, so I really had to push myself to create an artistic video using found footage without stepping on any legal toes. I feel as though I was successful, but my video may still be a bit too linear for my liking.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Modernly Antique

          After doing research and collecting a lot of information on Evan Baden, I definitely feel like I now understand his outlook on new media art. Evan Baden is young, at age 26, he is only five years older than I am. He continues to successfully exhibit his undergraduate body of work, as well as his current body of work-oftentimes around the world. I feel slightly unsuccessful knowing how much he completed by the time he reached where I am in school! I'm joking of course, slightly. I really appreciated the fact that Evan Baden still uses a film camera, a Canham 4x5, to be exact. I feel like he produces formally and aesthetically beautiful images using the hybrid method of film negatives scanned into Photoshop. Process aside, I very much enjoyed researching Evan Baden. His two main bodies of work deal with how technology affects the youth of today. When I was in my first darkroom photography class, almost every project I completed involved technology as a large part of my subject matter. I was able to identify with Evan Baden's concepts, as well as think very deeply about how technology has affected the way I personally have grown up. I am referring specifically to The Illuminati series, which depicts youths blankly staring at technology, bathed in an ethereal light. He exhibits with other modern artists, including Ai Weiwei and Kalup Linzy, but he really doesn't have a lot in common with them, artistically. I think his critique of youth and technology has a lot more in common with Ryan Trecartin. If Evan Baden continues to produce works and builds off of the concepts he has already produced, I am sure his place as a new media artist will only continue to be assured.