This brief is an opportunity to explore new methods and media. A wide range of responses to the brief are anticipated. These could be in the form of photographs, drawings, paintings, prints, models/maquettes, text, film and digital, sound-works, etc. Digital processes should be a key component in the production of the artefact – however the final outcome needn’t exist as digital media per se.
- A resolved artefact and portfolio, based around the key theme and informed by your research based on your Stage 1 proposal. If the artefact is practically manageable and available, please use it within your presentation.
- A 100 word positioning statement, including a title, description/materials and rationale.
- Documentation of research and development, including drawings, paintings, photography and other physical work.
- Learning Journal.
- Sketchbook work.
Additionally, we would like to see video documentation of your final piece, up to 2 minutes in length. This video should tell the story of the work from concept to realisation. This may be submitted by the end of the following week (Friday 8th March).
Monday 18th Feb - Launch
Deadline for video documentation is a week after the design domain deadline Friday 8th March.
Jen Email To Do List:
“Please sign up to a slot so that we can have a group discussion about…
– Your idea (has it changed at all?)
– Your intended plan / methods
– How to structure your two weeks.”
Speak about idea – how people imagine/worry about/think about their futures and if this is positive or negative. Original ideas about a speculative way to measure these thoughts or creating an effective impactful piece? Should the outcome be digital or analog? Considering puzzles – possibly mazes? Currently considering creating sketches in processing? Maybe an interactive sculpture outcome? What about a 3D environment?
A maze always has a beginning and an end but if you’re stuck trying to solve your future only time/the present could have the answers therefor the maze is closed of people solving problems which don’t exist. I am considering the maze to be a key aspect in my code because it’s a great representation of what I’m trying to portray. A maze can also cause feelings of stress/panic and claustrophobia as you can’t see a way out and you get yourself lost and tangled just like if you were to imagine planning your future.
Creating a minimal survey to help with the possible direction for this project. The feedback for my first part proposal was that the question I narrowed down to was also still very vague which is why I wanted to get more opinions on specific things I wonder about.
Is imagining the future positive or negative?
Specifically, is it positive to solve problems you don’t have yet?
Is solving problems you don’t have yet good or bad for your mental health?
Is this an issue you struggle with? (relate to questions above)
Personally I think I do struggle with problems I don’t have yet and I don’t think this is positive as constantly living in the future is very tiring and difficult.
A tweet that has just been advertised on my feed which brings up another important issue of how social media is further inducing stress upon young people as they see perfect lives on Instagram that they also want to achieve but their real lives don’t look like famous people’s Instagrams. This further causes panic when trying to plan a future life.
- Creating an object that can be put over the head which can be interactive and immersive allowing the viewer to feel panicked by the situation just like if they were struggling to resolve a problem in their mind.
- Creating a soundscape shown as headphones and a blindfold for the user to experience noise coming from both sides.
- Creating a unity piece similar to my getting into unity project which focused on an immersive landscape environment.
- Experimenting in processing by creating puzzles which are unsolvable. Possibly creating a small booklet as an outcome made up of the processing outcomes.
I want to start by creating a maze generator that has no exit I feel like this will allow me to analyse some code and see if I can put this together before jumping straight into the final also I hope this helps me finalise and visualise my ideas. I started by looking on open processing and I wanted to edit the sketch on processing however I realised a lot of people were inspired by Dan Shiffman who created the sketch in P5.js so I think I will take the same route and try to change code created by someone who published their code on open processing.
This is the sketch I will be editing and amending. Also I will be watching the Dan Shiffman videos shown below so that I can fully understand the code I am working with.
Some mazes created with a different cell width/height to create more simple or more complex maze.
Generative mazes on P5.js.
Visual representation of the survey taken earlier, sketchbook. Do you struggle with solving problems you don’t have yet? Answers – Yes:6 No:4.
21 February 2019
What is it like to spiral when solving problems which don’t exist yet?
I have been considering fortune cookies recently and the messages inside them. Rather than telling someone a prediction of the future what if the simple note contained a provocation? For example, ‘Imagine that your house is on fire, what do you take with you?’ this is obviously a simple question but once you start analysing it and try to solve it you start to consider how much could you carry? What matters? Do you really need anything physical or would you run out? Would you wait and call the fire brigade? All the questions spiral from one and some people think like that and get themselves in a spiral while others don’t consider these questions as often. Bare in mind that this is only a possible future this may never happen to you and even if it does you might not act as you have planned because there are factors you might have not considered for example how big the fire is? Whether your asleep or awake? Is it nighttime or daytime? And all these things can also be considered, however think about how much energy and time this kind of thinking/imagining/planning and solving can take from a person. Basically I think I could use these kinds of questions as provocations and invitations to get involved with solving problems you don’t necessarily have yet but are connected to possible and imagined futures.
A sketchbook pages expressing the ideas addressed in the paragraph above.
One of my possible outcomes I am considering is to have these questions/provocations in a container into which people can reach and read the questions. This is where my survey results come into play as not everyone worries about the future in the same way this would be an individual experience for everyone who decided to interact with it. Also if someone one continued to read more of the questions, hopefully, they would start to go into the spiral I am trying to portray as they would be overwhelmed with scenarios that don’t have an easy way out or a simple answer just like being stuck in a maze with no way out. This would allow the viewer to determine the balance as it would be their decision if they want to keep reading or stop.
I am also considering a different outcomes based on the same idea. I am considering creating a soundscape with these kinds of questions which would play on headphones that create a 360 kind of effect as I would play around with the sound and which ones play more on the left earphone and which ones plain the right creating an overwhelming surrounding hopefully causing a panic.
Cynthia recommended this book to me as she said it reminded her of my concept and idea I have ordered it and hopefully it will come in time for me to get inspiration for this project. I will insert some quotes below which I think agree/help further explain what I want to present though this project.
“We weren’t looking forward to anything in particular so much as we were simply looking forward” pg 10
“When people stop looking to the future, they start looking at the present” pg 11
“As we obsessed over the future of this and the future of that, we ended up robbing the present of its ability to contribute value and meaning.”
Stopped reading at Page 26. Went to the library and took out a copy of the book to read over the weekend.
I have decided to create the soundscape as there was no project this year that necessarily required sound and I really haven’t explored it much this year the only time I did was during control where the sounds were already existing and mostly songs therefore I wanted to use my own voice and work on the mixing and creating an overwhelming sensation through headphones. Keeping away from visuals isn’t like me but I have and will continue to explore some of my ideas through sketches and drawings in my sketchbook which will be documented here therefore I don’t feel like I am missing out on the visuals I have just decided it would be more effective to simplify this piece as sound can be very effective on it’s own. For now I will practice mixing the soundscape with some of the questions and ‘imagine if’s’ that I have written down in my sketchbook so far. I still have a lot of decisions to make regarding what will be said and whether I want other sounds or just my voice in the final piece.
Mikolaj helped me set up so that the audio is of high quality and I will be using Adobe Audition to edit the soundtrack.
To do Monday:
- Record all the audio clips you’ll need
- Look at the soundscapes project from last year to refresh memory
- Decide which effects you want to use
Mon 25 Feb
Next steps – I need to work on the soundscape and editing it to create the panic I am trying to portray. Also once theses finished I will need to consider how I want to present this in the Reid. Because the exhibition is in the Reid I have the added bonus of the chaos that will be happening, I purposefully don’t have visuals to make sure the viewer focuses on the soundscape and the business of the Reid will help with the panic I am trying to evoke. I am also considering whether to have the soundscape play on a loop or whether I want to create an interface for the exhibition so the viewers can listen and start it at the start, if I was to do this I think I would use processing.
The process of recording
I have decided this will be a personal piece of work and my intention for the final is to allow the viewer to enter thoughts whether they relate to this issue or not. If they do then this will be a familiar trail of thoughts if not it is a way for the viewer to take a moment and consider how other people process imagining the future.
My way of recording will start with a sentence and a question I have already written down in my sketchbook however that is the starting crutch from there I will be improvising to make sure the soundscape sounds real and authentic rather than rehearsed and tried. When recording I really focused on my pronunciation which means it isn’t very exiting on its own meaning it will be up to my editing to create something emotive and provocative. I am hoping to record a few different trials of thoughts that I can then mash up and play from left and right separately and use effects to add depth, also I want to use volume.
Editing each recorded file so that there are no gaps of silence as I recorded the sound slowly to make sure my pronunciation was good.
The audio files have no gaps making it sound very panicked and fast. I then played with overlaying the tracks and deciding whether they are played out of the left or right headphone.
Once I edited the 4 files I was happy with I exported each track so I could further manipulate them. I made a new composition and started with a single track playing on both headphones. The track then becomes more complex as the tacks are overlaid and I added effects like reverb to create some depth the track becomes very isolating and then fades to one where I question why we even worry about things ahead of time. I feel like this is successful and I could leave it like this but I would like of it was longer and even more overpowering which is why I will record more files and edit them adding them to the final extending the whole soundtrack.
Suggested topics to add to composition : lost phone and lost passport.
Wed 27 Feb
- edit : phone charger, lost passport and car accident files
- fill in statement
- print statement
- work on interface
- finish editing make the clip 2 mins
Editing the final multitrack. Right now I am working on how the individual tracks come into the soundscape and where they are placed and at what volume.
What is actually spoken about on the tracks? It will be difficult to make out everything as the intention is for it to be extremely chaotic so I will just write a little about each one below :
- The cancelled train. This one goes into a spiral of solutions like maybe I can get a subway or a bus is there even enough time? And goes onto the consequences of being late which are extreme like getting fired.
- Spilled water on Laptop. This one is more about financing will you have enough money to fix it or buy a new one and then goes onto what if you can’t and won’t be able to do your work or homework or whatever you needed it for.
- House is on fire. What do you take with you? Is there anyone around? this particular scenario is strange as you won’t ever really be able to prepare yourself because you don’t know where the fire will start or how bad it will be and it’s not likely if you create a plan in your mind you will be able to follow it in such a stressful situation anyway.
- The lost charger. Your phones out of charge and you’re lost, can you ask someone for help? What would you do in this situation? This track is modern as in the past people weren’t so attached to their cell phones, especially when they didn’t exist. It also considers different scenarios like what if you get kidnapped and your phones out of charge? This can easily lead to another spiral if the person starts imagining different ways to beat the attacker.
- The lost passport. You’re abroad and you lost your passport, how do you get back home?
- The car accident. What if you get hurt and lose a leg. This will change your life will you be able to do all the same things you can do now? will you deal with all the adjustments you will need to make?
- Insurance. This is the final clip and this one in itself shows how people plan for the future by having insurance and paying for something which hasn’t happened yet JUST IN CASE! ALWAYS BE PREPARED! So this track is there to make people realise even if they think they don’t solve problems that don’t exist they really do and the track ends with questions to the listened/yourself of why do we even do this and torture ourselves this way.
Right now I am working on the processing sketch which will play back the audio file.
So far I have this however if someone pressed twice the file plays but doesn’t stop the last file which was played, basically at every press of the mouse the file duplicates.
I have figured out a solution if the mouse(mousepad) is pressed the audio will play, when a key is pressed the file will stop playing incase something is wrong or the files are duplicated the user has an easy way of fixing it.
Right now I am deciding how I want the interface to look, I am worried that if I over complicate it or make it too eye-catching it will become something visual which the listener can distract themselves with which isn’t my intention. On the other hand I am worried this is too basic.
In the end I decided it will be more effective if the screen is very dull and unimportant as this will allow the sound-work to be the main focus and the only reason I decided to have an interface was to allow the listener to listen in a linear order rather than placing the headphone on in the middle of the soundscape if it was to play in a loop.
My Final Statement which will be displayed next to my sound-work:
I think Open Studios was successful, everything worked and played as intended on the day. I know that compared to my last year’s box of jelly this was a much different exhibition which I am happy about. I have the chance to explore and try new things that I wasn’t very good at before and I’m glad I pushed myself to create something simple but effective.
I created my documentation using Premier Pro, I thought it would have been extremely challenging to create a visual documentation video based on a sound work but I think I pulled through and created an interesting video. Sadly the soundscape was a little shorter than the video so the audio starts when you can see me recording audio in the video and stops before the exhibition reactions, hopefully this doesn’t affect the video negatively. Also since the audio finishes before the end of the video I believe it allows the viewer some time of reflection even before the video is finished and they already know what the listeners are reacting to. I tried to keep it simple and clear so that very early stage research and ideas are presented here in the Learning Journal rather than confusing the viewer since the video is meant to only be 2 mins long.