Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Final Project - Live Forever

My final art project is entitled "Live Forever" and is a combination of animation as well as the program Eyecon. Here is an example of the finished animation, without the sound:

The project is set up in the stairwell of the CFA building, and walking up the stairs looks something like this:

This project is a compilation of four different aspects of my life merging together. I've taken images I've either created or found that represent Home, Spirituality, Relationships, or Music, and made 4 different animations to each. I used the Eyecon software to create the sound for my project. In this way, the viewer in a sense can choose what they want to hear as they view my work. The project is a self representation of myself but also has an element of interactivity so the audience can semi-control the project.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Artist Lecture - Manuel Alfaro

On Thursday, May 3, Reno artist Jose Manuel Alfaro gave a lecture at the Church Fine Arts about his current exhibition titled “Death, Drugs and La Linea” showing in the Sheppard Gallery. Alfaro is a Mexican-American artist who works in the theme of Chicano political art. He is mostly inspired by three types of artwork, including ancient Aztec art, Muralist, and Chicano Muralist. Alfaro compares the ancient Aztecs to current Narco culture of Mexico. In both cultures, violence is prominent and they have a preoccupation with warfare, expansion of territories, agriculture, and domination over others. The cartels today see themselves as Aztec warriors, and glorify death and the killing of others in their culture. To Alfaro, his art is a way of illuminating the problem of drug cartels and corruption in Mexico that many people are unaware of. He believes that his art can bring forth social issues and can have an impact on people who see his art. In contrast, Alfaro also showed a mural he painted at Lincoln Park Elementary School. This mural showed a young girl on the far left side, and as you moved right the painting progressed through the stages of her life until graduation. This mural is far from the political art Alfaro worked on for his exhibition, and the theme is much more light and happy. Alfaro said that he enjoyed doing both works, because “Death, Drugs and La Linea” brought attention to a real social problem in Mexico, and the mural made him feel good when people stopped to look and take in the whole painting. Alfaro’s exhibition will be showing through May 11 at the Sheppard Gallery.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Exhibition Review - Kevin Kremler

Kevin Kremler is an artist from UNR  who recently had his exhibition in the Sheppard Fine Arts Gallery in early April. His exhibition was titled Postcards from the Grey Area and featured 4 distinct pieces of work. The first was a sort of photo booth that took a picture of the observer as if they were Norman Rockwell painting a self portrait. The camera then printed out a postcard for the viewer to keep, the digital copies were for Kremler to keep. Also in the exhibition was a crayon drawing, an installation of small TVs with images of an x-rayed skull, and a see-saw like structure involving sand. Kremler likes to make work that challenges people’s common perception of art. He likes to show people that there are all different kinds of art that can be appreciated in different ways. I really enjoyed the concept of the giant crayon piece as a postcard. Someone expressed concern that the piece could get destroyed through the mail, but that is really all a part of the project, since it is an oversized post card. To learn more about Kremler’s work visit www.unrtist.com

Progress Critique 3

I've started with some animation, and here is what I have so far:

Monday, April 9, 2012

Progress Critique #2

This week, I created the first two graphics in Photoshop. Here they are:


My next step will be to create the other two, and then bring them into Adobe After Effects and animate each of them separately, then intertwine all of them.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Artist Lecture - Barbara Davidson

Barbara Davidson is a photojournalist for the Los Angeles Times who recently came and lectured at UNR on March 29. She was being presented with Frank McCulloch Courage in Journalism award for her photo series called “Caught in the Crossfire”. The photo series chronicled Los Angeles gang violence, but showed the subjects of her photos were the families that were not directly affiliated with gangs, yet were still effected by gang violence. Her photos told a powerful story about the people in Los Angeles, and how normal the gang violence is for them, it’s almost a way of life. The photos were done in all black and white, and showed portraits of people, a lot of the time children, who had been injured by stray bullets, or families that had lost loved ones. She said that the subjects she photographed were more than willing to help her with her project, because the families want to talk about their loved ones because they recognize that they are often forgotten but the community. Davidson decided to do this piece because she felt that this was a story that most times goes unreported in Los Angeles. She says she realizes that her story is not easy to talk about or to listen to, but it is an important story to needed to be told. “It’s really hard to tell these kinds of stories, which is why many people don’t,” said Davidson. To see Davidson’s work please visit www.LATimes.com/victims

Monday, April 2, 2012

Progress Critique #1 - Research

After developing my ideas fully about how I want to accomplish this project, I created a project calendar to keep me on track up until the final due date on 5/8. Here is the calendar:

For this stage in my project, I decided research of all the tools I will be using would be best. I completed some of the Lynda.com tutorials, including tutorials on Adobe Flash and After Effects. After researching both animation softwares I decided to go with After Effects. I've also experimented with Eyecon, trying to figure out how it works and how I will attempt to use it for my final product. I've also considered the sound that I will be using for the animation, and decided I want Eyecon to control the sound instead of the video. So instead of laying a soundtrack on the video file of each animation, I will upload sounds into Eyecon - clips of my favorite songs, sound effects of my life, clips of different people talking, readings of my favorite quotes, etc. These sounds will be randomly changing as a person moves across the space. In the calendar as well as my original idea, I said I would create 4 separate videos that will tie together and each video will change according to Eyecon. Now I will create one single fluid animation that will loop through all four canvases, and the sounds will be randomized.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Project 2 Proposal

I want to create a piece that is similar to the triptychs we made in Art 245. I want to collect around 20 images - either that I found, that I scanned/took a picture of, or that I created in Adobe Illustrator, and paste them together into a digital canvas on Photoshop. The idea I was thinking of was creating 4 separate scenes that each depict an important aspect of my life. The 4 aspects I want to use are Home - Reno/Tahoe, UNR life, how I live, Relationships - family, friends, mentors, etc, Spirituality - religion, culture, beliefs, and Music - my favorite form of recreation. Since these are all aspects of my life, I think they can intertwine with each other. So, I want to animate each scene together as a sort of life story either through photoshop or flash, and then use Eyecon to shift between videos when someone walks across an open space. The different videos will will be the different perspectives of each scene. Each separate scene will interact with one another at certain points depending on where you are standing in the space. This work will be projected on a big screen.


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Final Critique

I realized as the deadling was getting closer, that I had never actually given my work a title. So here is the installation iLight:

You can find this on the 2nd floor of Church Fine Arts, near the ProjectNV gallery.

iLight is a photo series installation consisting of 18 portraits. The portraits were created with a 10 second shutter speed, in which the subject used my iPhone to light up their face, then draw through the air with the iPhone. The end product created a sort of "light painting" in conjunction with the portraits. Of my 240 contacts in my phone, I successfully photographed 30, and narrowed that 30 down to 18 to print for the final project. Each person got to select his or her own light color, as well as draw whatever shape they liked. The only direction I gave was how long to hold the light on their own face, and when to start drawing with the light. In this way, each photo is a personal representation of the person being photographed. If there are any questions, please comment below!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Week 5 Progress

This week I am selecting the photos I want to use for the project, and I will start printing out the photographs. Here are the photos I will be using:

Monday, February 27, 2012

Week 4 Progress

This week I tested out printing to see how my final product would look. I printed on both glossy and luster-glossy paper finishes. While there are appealing aspects to both types of paper, and both are very similar, I think I would like to print on glossy finish paper, because that shows the highest contrast of color in the picture.

My prints will be 11 x 17 or larger, depending where I can buy the paper, and hopefully I can print some copies to show next class. Here are some new portraits for this week:

Monday, February 20, 2012

Week 3 Progress

I have been continuing to take photos, and finding as many subjects as I can that will pose for me. Here are some more portraits from this week:

I want to concentrate now on how I will be showing my work. I'll be printing the photos on either a satin finish or glossy finish photo paper. I was turned away from glossy at first, but the extra shine might really make the light in the image pop. I will have to do some experimentation with this before I commit.
I'm still playing around with sizing, but 18 x 24in, maybe a little bigger seems a good size to make my subjects appear life-size.
I won't be framing the photos, I don't want any borders to distract from the photo itself.
I will still be shooting as long as I can still find willing subjects, but I want to get started printing right away. Next week I plan to experiment a little with the different types of paper and see what I like best for the final product.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Week 2 Progress

After the critique of week one's progress, I decided to take my project in the direction of portraiture. I was given the idea to tie in the cell phone I'm using as a light source into the overall projects by photographing my contact list as the subjects. My contact list is made up of friends and family, some of whom I talk to everyday and others I haven't spoken to in years. The first respondents to my project inquiry have acted as my guinea pigs in experimenting with this light portraiture. Here are some of the results of my first few subjects:

I really like the results of this, and I'm going to continue with the theme of photographing the contacts in my phone, then illuminating them with my phone.