I was pleasantly surprised by the feedback from my exhibition. It definitely made me think a lot more about how the footage affected people and how I could use this to my advantage. The main feedback that came through was that I needed to layer my sounds more. They liked how I had developed my imagery but felt that the sounds should replicate the footage. In terms of the actual space, the film was shown it did work very well. I liked how the space was small and claustrophobic as it added to the anxiety of watching the film. This is something I need to think about further when it comes to displaying my work.
Last term I became quite obsessed with surveillance and how many people are watching us? Part of the reason I decided to make GIFs of my own face was that I wanted to distort an image that had perhaps already been captured and I also wanted to see how I scrutinized my own image. This led me to think about Panopticism. Do we change what we are doing on a day to day basis because we think we might be being watched, even when we are completely alone? Are we being constantly monitored online, and if so how does this affect us? Do we change our searches in fear that someone else will find them? How much do people think about their information being sold? I want to make a film based on this idea that perhaps we are never truly alone or our minds never let us think we are.
A link that explains Panoptiscism well – https://www.slideshare.net/Rinu21Kirk/michel-foucault-panopticon
Two articles that have influenced my research –
‘The Government’s creepy obsession with your face’ – by Dan King for THE WEEK
‘The Watchers’ – by Jonathan Shaw for HARVARD MAGAZINE
When starting this project and looking into scratch films I quickly became obsessed with individual frames. How can you control a split second? Chris had recommended I watch the Best Brand Beauty Film which turned out to be by Frank Lebon and a massive inspiration.
The first GIF I made was done by photocopying individual pieces of paper and reprinting. I like how the face slowly faded out the more it is photocopied.
Click the link to see the video – Gif of me
This was my second attempt this time I decided to test out drawing onto the image as I know this is something I want to replicate in my scratch films – I did not perfect this and think it can be done a lot better. The writing I did was perhaps too obvious. I scanned in each image this time and although I think it is still effective, I think the texture and the way the images change with the photocopier is better.
Click the link to see the video – Gif of me 2
My final attempt was trying to mix two people together to find an awkward beauty in there faces. I found that when you leave the scanner up you get a black background which I thought worked well.
‘A deviation from a minor social expectation’ – is the definition of awkward.
Click the link to see the video – Gif Imen
This exercise definitely taught me how to control a frame and the importance of composition.
I found that when I make films I often end up putting words into them. I had always chosen to write in my own handwriting for three reasons.
A) Because I think it is honest – and when studying the topic of awkward it is so important that you are honest with the audience and you are dealing with such a ‘real’ subject.
B) Frank LeBon always used handwriting and I think it is very effective.
C) It is incredibly difficult to work intricately when working on such a small scale.
Despite the third point I have chosen to still look into some awkward fonts. For me, I think the way I will change the style of writing is through the thickness and softness of the pen.
This exhibition was really influential to my work. It showed me how calculated scribbles can become incredibly interesting to look at and quite beautiful. This nicely tied in with my research from the last term as, when asked how to draw awkward, a lot of people drew squiggles. This ironically is quite an awkward way to think of awkward.
I have always been a huge fan of Mark LeBon, Franks’s father. It is quite clear where their styles have met. In my opinion, Franks’s aesthetic has been one of the most popular in the past couple of years as he has made music videos for James Blake, ASAP Rocky, Mount Kimbie and done campings for Nike, Rimowa, Palace and Burberry to name a few. He has a fast pace style of editing which I think is crucial in today’s society where everyone’s attention span is so low. His work has always intrigued me as I have never been able to figure out his technique. It is a mix of handcrafting and digitally editing. This is something that I hope to achieve in the future. Frank is an image-maker and can make the most mundane things look interesting. If I am to use found footage I could well be faced with dull footage which I will then have to turn into a new piece of art.
Below is a picture that was taken by Tyronne LeBon, Franks’s brother of Frank. Tyronne also has a very interesting style that has also influenced my work.
The majority of my research when looking into scratch films was simply looking at other artists’ work and seeing what I thought was interesting or not. What works what doesn’t work – and what can I take and develop further?
Different techniques –
Basic – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cn5e2NvvELI
Steven Wolshen (beautiful work, talks about his inspiration)-https://vimeo.com/groups/animation/videos/354952077
How to stitch together – https://www.exploratorium.edu/pie/downloads/Scratch_Film.pdf
Echo Film Center – https://vimeo.com/331090978
Scratch film junkies (very old school and dated) – https://vimeo.com/channels/scratchfilmjunkies
Norman McLaren (so interesting, all to do with music) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0vgZv_JWfM
McLaren, Loops ( a classic, look at the colours – how does he get paint to dance?) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=69&v=6JvOqeEtFRY&feature=emb_title
Library of scratch films – http://www.edgeofframe.co.uk/tag/direct-animation/
McCullin is a war photographer and therefore there is such a deep sadness in his photographs. However, this exhibition looked at the landscape of Somerset. My parents live in somerset, so to me, this landscape is a very happy place, of fresh air away from London. The juxtaposition of what I see and what McCullin photographs are incredibly interesting as they are so, so different. Obviously, McCullin has been affected by his past but it is fascinating to see how people react to the same thing.
When trying to emote people how much of how they feel about your piece is down to the piece or down to their past experiences – and does it matter?
I think as long as they feel something then you have done your job as an artist well.
McCullin’s use of bold lines is extraordinary and when scratching onto film I think it would be interesting to trace his lines to form abstract shapes.
I could film the countryside of somerset from my viewpoint and scratch in McCullins lines from his viewpoint. That could be very interesting?
I started looking at Calder because I became fascinated with composition and how much it mattered – it turns out it is the most important thing. To do this I cut out the individual shapes in Calder’s work and tried to reimagine them in a different composition. Every time the painting did not feel right, it did not have the balance and the same feel. I tried my own playing around with different shapes to create a composition. This exercise has been very beneficial because when I start scratching onto 16mm film I will not be able to have much detail so little marking will make a huge difference. I have to start drawing abstract shapes more.
As I have expressed before it is very important to me that there is energy in my work. If there is no energy then there can be no emotion, good or bad. Smiths’ work much like Jackson Pollocks has a braveness to it. The work is unapologetic and bold. This is something I need to get better at, picking up a pen and just drawing and not being afraid of what mark is made on the paper. Sometimes when you draw without thinking this is when the best ideas come out. When I start scratching onto film I can not rub out or start again. Whatever mark I have made I will have to live with. This is why looking at Smiths’ work has inspired me to be a little braver and actually just get on with it.