Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Critique 1: Horizon Lines

Horizon Lines was a performance art by Claire Stephens at the Galena Creek Park. The performance is focused around the idea of lines utilizes instruments including the clarinet, guitar, xylophone, and violin. There were also short breaks between each piece with poems that were written and read aloud by different artists throughout the performance. The performance was very relaxing and unpredictable with half of it being played as written and the other half being improvised. Instead of using a gallery space or room, Claire used a location outdoors and within nature to fully experience the horizon lines beyond the trees at the Galena Creek Park.
 Before even starting the performance there was a path that we had to follow that was lit up with lights leading up to the site. It was a very cold but relaxing walk. The path was a little uneven, curvy, and steep and the sounds of twigs cracking as I stepped them and the rustling of the trees as I was walking up felt almost as if it was part of the piece. The thought of horizon lines made me think about the randomness and unpredictable sounds like those I experienced during my walk up to the performance site. The title itself made me think of standing somewhere high up and looking towards the horizon and listening to the sounds surrounding me as I watch. Claire performance did what I had imagined. Her use of location where we were surrounded by trees felt as if we can experience what the looking into the horizon would sound like. Not only does it set the mood for the performance, the sounds from nature also added to the sounds of the instruments playing the songs. The way that it was also dark out side helped us focus more of our attention to what we are hearing rather than seeing as well.
The idea of lines made me think about the silhouette of the mountains. As the performers played I closed my lines and imagined myself following the lines of the mountains as if they were like the lines to a song. The unpredictable nature of the songs they played made it  easy for me to not think about how it should go but instead made me go with the flow and let it be. The way they played the songs and improvised as some parts was very intriguing because it gave the musicians control over the listeners to create a sort of image in our heads.
The breaks between the songs were poems that were written and read aloud by other artists. This was very interesting because it added to the nature of lines. I thought it was a smart idea to include different artists reading their poems about lines than just a performance of songs. It helped break away from it being a concert to a performance art piece. The different poems read by the different artists helped glorify the idea of lines which helped us appreciate lines more than just a line itself. It also defined lines as something more than just a line such as the lines of words across a page or the lines that follow the horizon.
In the end, the Horizon Lines by Claire Stephens was a great piece of work and something to experience. Lines were always something that we thought of as seeing but Claire did a great job in showing that line can be more than just a line draw between to points on a piece of paper. Lines can also be heard and played just like how we were listening to the performance. It was a wonderful piece and I enjoyed every second of it and it left me thinking about what more a line can be.

Monday, December 9, 2013

BYOB video

The BYOB project was an exciting experience. It was very chaotic with all the lights from the videos projecting on the walls and the mixing of sounds coming from the projectors. I chose to do a video of Rhea and I singing "I'm Just Your Problem" from the hit cartoon show Adventure Time. Although the theme was about the holidays, I was going to do an acapella of a Christmas song with just my voice. However, due to the lack of time, I decided to use a video of Rhea and I singing the song in our office at work to add to the holiday cheer. The song may not be about the holidays but it was something fun to add to the cacophony of lights, images, and sound.

Cut up vinyls

Cutting up vinyls and replacing pieces of them from another record was very interesting and the outcome is very unexpected. During the process of cutting up pieces for my vinyl project I cut my thumb with a box knife and was unable to finish. However, I did try and play with using rounded edges in a "squiggle" like fashion versus straight angles like a triangle to makes things a little more interesting. Two the vinyls that I was planning to use was a rock genre record by Asia and a dubstep themed record called The Animators. I thought the two records would create an interesting mix between the relaxing sound of rock and the intense beat of dubstep. The outcome of other classmates vinyl pieces were very interesting and the sounds were chaotic. Destroying vinyls seemed like a waste but in the end, the outcome became something new and intriguing to listen to.

The Vinyl Arena

Rievv, Rhea, and I were inspired  by project called "Vinyl Rally" by Lucas Abela. Lucas made race track out of record vinyls and used a toy car with a needle underneath it to scratch along the surface of the vinyls as it races across the track. Movement and sound were the biggest factors, but we also wanted to incorporate the viewers as participants to create the movement and sound. We decided to play with the idea of using toys as Lucas Abela did and came up with the idea of using a popular kids toy from our childhood called Beyblades. We thought it would be fun to use the idea of play with these iconic toys. Like how Lucas attached a needle underneath the toy race car in his project, we put a needle on the tip of the tops so when we "let them rip," the beyblades would scratch along the surface of the vinyls as the spin and battle around the arena. The arena itself was made by cutting up triangles to form a hexagon which we thought would be a unique shape to form the arena aside from using a circle. Since we were working with stuff from the past, we decided to incorporate the vinyl covers from the vinyl records we used to decorate the arena and give it a childhood memory look.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Not So Church Fine Arts Tour

Not So Church Fine Arts Tour

One of the things that inspired me were video games and their use of sound. Many video games such as Call of Duty uses sound to create a world where the user can tell whether something is to the left or right of a person or if it was far away or close by. One of the things that inspired me was the Oculus Rift and the ability to make a player first person in virtual reality. I was inspired by the idea to put someone in a virtual world with just the use of sound. In a sense, making the user feel like as if the real world is the virtual world. One of the games that I was inspired for this audio was a game for the Oculus Rift called Lost in the Rift. The game is a first person horror game where you have to find a girl. The game ends up taking you to a tunnel where you travel deeper and deeper in maze like hallways as you try to find her. The game uses sounds such as ominous winds blowing and creaking doors that create a creepy vibe that makes you tense up as you force yourself to make another step. It also uses sounds of the character's loud breathing and staggered steps to heighten the tension of the game. I wanted to create that same creepy vibe and incorporate it into a tour. I used the sounds of the game as a reference for my audio to create that same kind of tension and vibe the game provides as you follow the ghostly tour guide around the Church Fine Arts Building making the listener the main character in this real life virtual tour.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Webcam song

When it comes to recording stuff on a webcam especially when it's live, nothing is really ever prepared before hand but rather thought of and done on the spot. We decided to do a cover of the song "I'm Just Your Problem from the hit cartoon series "Adventure Time." We came up with and dramatized a short scene where we altered some of the lyrics and made it so we are fighting with each other about what song to sing on a live stream webcam and progressively made it more personal. We both purposely ended up messing up at the end to signify why we were fighting anymore and to also show that during live spontaneous performances, it's never going to be perfect on the first try.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Always Watching

This piece was inspired by the sounds I have collected. Many of the sounds are captured inside busy buildings and from me walking around. When listening to my sounds I felt as if I was being followed by someone and the sound of walking became my focus. Even though there is an abundance of noise in the background I become almost claustrophobic as I focus more on the footsteps. In this triptych I tried to bring out what I was feeling in that moment where I felt like I was being watched and hearing the same repeated the same words, "always watching" over and over again as if it will never go away, because anywhere and everywhere I am I felt like someone was always watching.

My sounds: