Today, Bao and I did a Facebook, co-broadcast where we continued our exploration of juxtaposing the same object next to each other. The difference being, that unlike the first time where we were both present in school and generally in the same area, this time we were in completely different places, our homes.
I’d say it was a great success, I thought that the visuals we came up with were surprisingly good. This was also a good an interesting look into the everyday common items that we “all have”. That being said, not everyone has a tv, or a couch, or even a home. So perhaps it’d be interesting used as an interesting visual to use for a campaign to promote the disparity in the lives of others. But in general, it does bring to mind how the same objects can differ.
It was also interesting to see people commenting and a reminder from a friend that “i can just talk” to reply instead of typing like i did in the first few mins of the broadcast. People whom I’ve never connected with in awhile also surprisingly showed up to watch, I found it interesting just in the fact that they popped in. (I also found it much easier to interact with them on the phone vs on the desktop). Made me wonder about how often our content is being seen by people, even if they dont comment or leave a like. Video makes it more apparent especially in view counts. After the video was done, it already had 27 views; and upon linking it to this post, it had grown to 42 views. To me that’s pretty incredible, that sort of growth and reach that everyday people can already reach a considerable number of people in such a short time.
For our pre-class trial run, Me and Su Hwee teamed up for this Safari Themed Cross-stream idea!
The general idea is for us to do a cross stream where one side goes out into the school like David Attenborough/(Insert Favourite Nature Presenter)
A few of the initial concepts generated were for eg. a news report, much like the evening news. Having the camera at different angles, say strapped to the leg, which was pretty cool and brought to my mind videos of people strapping GoPros’ to various limbs and objects (examples HERE and HERE). However, we were at a loss for what the stream recipient would then do.
I think playing around with the FaceBook app livestreams and finding the filters helped direct our subsequent idea for the safari. Sadly the filters aren’t on the browser version of FaceBook Livestreams.
As you can hear in the above livestream, there is echoed audio. I muted the different windows/tracks one by one but couldn’t figure out what was the issue at the time of the stream.
Fortunately in the subsequent stream we did to fix this problem, i managed i figure out where the echo was coming from, my facebook livestream window.
Another aspect for this Safari, is us to make it look like those nature documentaries. I whipped up a quick lower third, and used scenes to fade them in nicely.
We’ve planned to add additonal elements such as animal overlays and a few varieties of lower thirds for each “species”
This all reminded me of the BTS work of media console operators for live shows, cutting between different media clips, though, OBS isnt exactly rigged to work on that level, it does a pretty decent job!
Using the studio mode to cut between scenes was a little tricky to get, and being on the ball for switching scenes is a little nervewracking, but also pretty fun.
I constantly find myself being very nervous about Going Live; and yet after I’m done I still want to do it again. I think it’s an innate social drive to share things we’re excited about.
From the get-go, I was pretty certain that I wanted to be streaming music, but I hadn’t decided on any specifics. Looking back, I’m not sure when I decided on the theme of VAPORWAVE.
Vaporwave is a microgenre of electronic music and an Internet meme that emerged in the early 2010s. The music typically features a fascination with 1980s and 1990s styles such as elevator music, smooth jazz, R&B, and lounge music often sampling or manipulating tracks via chopped and screwed techniques and other effects. The subculture surrounding vaporwave is often associated with an ambiguous or satirical take on consumer capitalism and popular culture, and tends to be characterized by a nostalgic or surrealist engagement with the popular entertainment, technology and advertising of previous decades. It also incorporates early Internet imagery, late 1990s web design, glitch art, and cyberpunk tropes in its cover artwork and music videos.
It was unknowingly a great choice in my opinion; with vaporwave also being a very visual subculture with a focus on ＡＥＳＴＨＥＴＩＣＳ, source material was boundless.
My first livestream was my favorite as everything pretty much went according to plan, however the one thing I didn’t account on was getting a copyright strike on one of the 3 songs I had played that night. Additionally after I had gotten the notification minutes after the stream, I realized that I hadn’t hit record either, a real doubly whammy.
The song in particular being ‘ESPRIT 空想 – SUMMER NIGHT’ (linked above). Streaming music also wasn’t particularly easy, especially in that I wanted to have control over which program can be heard and which one’s can’t. I eventually found out some software that allowed me to create a virtual cable input and another to help me route spotify audio to the cable. Funnily enough, in my second livestream, I ended up playing music through Google Chrome which didn’t require any of the aforementioned software. With all this talk of configuration, it once again conjures thoughts of curation. I definitely realized that my preconception of the level of polish I had set on the livestream was self-imposed; and letting go of that made the experience true to it’s intent of sharing content (and released some tension).
The first time I streamed, Winzaw and Cher See commented on my video (thanks yall!)~ The interactivity was nice, though, it was hard to monitor the broadcast and respond to comments at the same time, maybe something that’ll get easier in time. It was especially cool in that they definitely were on the ball with the both of them commenting in the ＶΛＰＯＲＷΛＶΞ aesthetic, so it was fun to see who else was in on the memeing. And speaking of memeing, most of the gifs and videos I used were very tongue in cheek, from an old guy listens to vaporwave video, pictures of donald trump from back in the day, and even a sad frog with a rainy night and Japanese neon signage (japanese text being another aspect of vaporwave).
Overall, it was very enjoyable experience, maybe next time I’ll stream directly to my timeline and see how I do with possibly more people coming into contact with my content (and I’d also be able to link the video livestream outside of the facebook group)
quintessential Vaporwave music + visuals
(I was also thinking of streaming the 1988 Crystal Light National Aerobic Championship, cause just listen to that music )
For the alter-ego, I decided to cook (even thought I can’t really). So I set out to film myself preparing some instant noodles!
The idea initially was based off the Mukbang-styled livestream. Mukbang being the korean internet streamers who broadcast themselves cooking and eating quantities of food.
American-based streaming platform, Twitch.tv also has their own corner which promotes cooking streams/shows.
The prep-work behind it took longer than I had expected, which led to certain goofs throughout the video which thanks to the power of streaming didn’t seem so bad, but I’ll elaborate on them later. Setting up the laptop, the usb webcam (which helped me change up the shot from time to time and kept it a little more varied through the stream), the angle of the shot, the music and the “pre”- cooking of the food. Even after all that I forgot to turn the stove on before starting the livestream.
Touching upon the part about music, I was also trying to tie in the idea of those cooking videos with no commentary a la YouTube channel “Peaceful Cuisine”, a channel which they have high-quality videos of people making food in two varieties, with or without music; similar to Bob Ross where sound also played a large role in his painting videos. Those also influenced the sort of livestream I had in mind as well.
Livestreaming also presents the streamer with the option how they want things to be presented. As mentioned before camera angles, the streamer is completely in charge of what the audience can and cannot see. Likewise this came in very handy as if you noticed I spilt some noodles during my pouring and some hung over the edge, however, my awkward tidying up seemed to net a decent save unbeknownst to the viewers that there was quite an unsightly bunch of noodle on the stove (hence the cut off). It’d be fun to change it up and keep rolling through the goofs, and furthermore toy with the idea of letting the viewer change the camera angle or perspective.
This first assignment was pretty interesting. Mainly because I don’t usually use social media to broadcast my life and going-ons most of the time, but I do enjoy shooting video; so this was a fun combination of the two. I felt quite freed while shooting the livestream actually. In my opinion, people aren’t expecting a lot of polish during a continuous amateur livestream and hence I didn’t really bother about stability or aesthetics of the video during the transitional points of my wandering around campus. My only worry was maintaining a stable wi-fi connection.
Generally, my decisions of what to shoot were a very spur of the moment, my only real plan being the visit to the library. Thankfully the lobby was a good point to return to for a variety of reasons; it had people packing up some stuff, it had an easy access to an alternate viewpoint and was also the middle zone for going to other areas, leading to a lot of crossovers and cameos in other people’s livestream. An interesting point that was mentioned was that this sort of interaction would be very hard to script. Bringing to mind the long takes from movies usually requiring numerous takes to get ‘right’. While watching the collage of videos I was also wondering about if we could really sync up the videos and the visual that we’d get from multiple POVs diverging and reconverging over time and the multiple angles we’d get of the same scene (shout out pink Llama aka Kendrick Llama). Visually alone, that’d be pretty neat.
Another interesting point that was brought up was how sound mashes more easily than the visuals, being unable to distinguish which video the sound was coming from for the most part. It was also pretty interesting when the videos were being muted one by one and how nice it sounded, like playing with levels on a mixer. As interesting as the audio is, doing this exercise with only audio would probably not hold as much attention due to the lack of coherence the audience can get from purely audio alone, save for very crowded, bustling audio.
Sadly, the video Facebook uploaded to my profile seems to have tanked heavily in terms of quality, with the highest setting allowed on the video being 360p. On top of that the bitrate (depending on the amt of movement) was extremely crushing on the quality as you can see in the screenshot above. I’m unsure if the live feed of the stream looked this janky but to me this is not something I’d personally upload or stream with. Using other peoples uploads as a reference, this appears to be an issue that is tied to my device or wifi connection. Another technical issue is that my phone has a problem focusing which causes it to buzz and get stuck in an unfocused blurry edged image; the usual fix being a quick wiggle of the camera, which you can see occasionally during the video along with the overpowering tinny buzzing noise. Technical issues aside, this was quite the enjoyable experience and I’d be keen on doing this again if I could do with with a higher level of quality.