Thursday, April 22, 2010

Digital Illustration: Feel of the City

Our assignment this week was to create an illustration on photoshop in either the themes of feel of the city or grunge and beauty. I had a bunch of photos that I accumulated over the course of the semester that went more with "Feel of the City." My image is of city hall - I played with the colors and applied a posterize effect. The background came from the picasa album. I also added a silhouette of the city skyline and a silhouette of a bare tree. This was a really fun way to end our work on photoshop!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

“My Own Little World”

This assignment was to create a “bad” music video using iMovie and GarageBand. I chose the stop-motion technique where hundreds of still images are used to create a short video (I used over 800 photographs!) My roommate Jill was the photographer and she followed me on my journey from my dorm room to the Student Center where I am very isolated and “in my own little world” despite being amongst hundreds of other students. This process of stop motion in addition to using the programs of iMovie and GarageBand was brand new to me and definitely a learning experience. I edited the song, “First Day of My Life” by Bright Eyes using GarageBand and incorporated that into my final piece. This project definitely opened my eyes on just how difficult creating and editing a video can be! I hope this isn’t too shabby for my first attempt!! Enjoy.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lynda Barry Lecture

Lynda Barry was without a doubt the best lecturer all year! She was hilarious, quirky, unique, and inspirational at the same time. She was engaging and very easy to pay attention to. For once, I was actually interested in the lecture hour and didn't fall asleep! The audience was roaring with laughter bringing some to tears! Lynda grew up on a farm in Wisconsin, went to a small school (through a scholarship) and learned a lot about narrative writing. Her big overall question of the lecture was "What is an image?" Her definition went something like this: something that triggers in your mind from immediate thoughts. Right away, I noticed her passion and drive - she absolutely loves being a cartoonist. Her book is a graphic novel that is part memoir, part collage and part workbook in which Lynda instructs her readers in methods to open up their own creativity. She stressed the imagination and how to, in a sense, revert back to a child's mind because children have very active imaginations. At the end of the lecture, she did something a little unexpected! Lynda belted out a song without moving her lips! Everyone gave her a much deserved standing ovation!

My Pet Tiger

For this week's assignment, we had to do another composite image using Photoshop, but this time, with our own photos. I used an image of myself hugging my dog, however, I cut out my dog and put a photo of a tiger in instead. Thats where I got the idea for "My Pet Tiger." To make the tiger look more like a pet, I put a collar on him, and added a toy ball and a bowl with food. I wanted to put the tiger in its natural habitat. Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Manipulated Current Event Photo

The assignment this week was to find a current event photograph and manipulate in some way in order to change its meaning. The Grammy Awards Show that recently took place was a great example of controversy and drama between Kanye West and Taylor Swift. As I'm sure most people know, Kanye ran on stage as soon as Taylor Swift received her grammy award, took the mic from her, and angrily announced his belief that Beyonce should have won for best video. In MY photo, I made it seem as if Kanye West was happily giving the grammy to Taylor!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Controversy: Photo-Manipulation

In the world we live in today, computers and technology consume us: in absolutely EVERYTHING we do. It is not only our means of communication and information, but we are also influenced by the images we see on the Internet, magazine, covers, etc. The introduction of Photoshop was quite an extraordinary technological advancement. With every new obsession, comes controversy; plain and simple, it is inevitable. Most of the time, I believe editing photos is a legitimate way to produce art and to make digitally enhanced works. When the meaning or essence of the photograph is removed during the editing process, that is when it becomes a major problem. This is especially common in the magazine industry where models are constantly being photoshopped where their bodies are being edited to produce an idealized image of what she should or is expected to look like. This is a completely absurd practice. I understand that it IS a legal practice and the magazine has rights to those photos, but it comes down to a lie. We are manipulating the bodies of these models to give an image that is fake. Hundreds of thousands of people view these images and are influenced from the manipulated figure, however, the consumer is not aware of the underlying falsity of the photographs. Pascal Dangin, the digital retoucher for fashion's and Hollywood's most famous photographers is making a fortune off of this very practice. He does make a good point stating, "Hey, everybody wants to look good. Basically we're selling a product - we're selling an image. To those who say too much retouching, I say you are bogus. This is the world that we're living in. Everything is glorified. I say live in your time.'' His reasoning behind his work is valid; we should embrace our highly advanced, technological world, however, what he fails to mention is that these retouched, highly glamorized images contain false information. If the “tweaked” photographs are going to be publicized, it should be made public that they are in fact, retouched and not 100% natural/accurate. We must be aware of this practice and realize that the stick thin, sexy, glamorous models on the covers of fashion and beauty magazines are not always true portrayals.

Scanned Face

For our homework assignment this week, we scanned our faces. I took about 20-30 photos of me making funny faces against my scanner. We had to then use illustrator to trace the outlines of our faces and fill in those paths with the appropriate colors for skin tones. As you can tell, I am definitely not an expert in Illustrator yet. I have a lot to still learn but I felt this project taught me the basics and it was actually a pretty enjoyable process!