Foundation 4D II Project 2: Soundscape

“Roses are Red,

Blue is the Sky

Man, 25, breaks up with AI and dies.”


The poem above is not actually a poem but it’s actually the title of my soundscape. It’s about a man who logs in to his computer and “breaks up” with an AI program, who he has previously been interacting with. The AI reacts negatively to this, and its hostility and anger reaches across the digital realm and causes the man to die of a heart attack in real life.


Concept and Ideation

When I first received the project brief I was at a loss of what to do because as a visually inclined person, I had never created a piece of work that was not heavily reliant on visual effects.

I decided that the best way for me to execute the project would be to create a soundscape that had a narrative storyline since telling stories is something I enjoy doing and something that I have been told I am good at :))))))))))))

My initial idea for a story was to have a soundscape of a chicken running away from a slaughterhouse. This is actually not a bad idea because as a vegetarian this is a issue which is close to my heart and I think that we need to show more love to the chickens which are killed every day by annoying people in slaughterhouses. My inspiration for this idea was a scene I saw in the movie Mr Bean’s Holiday where Mr Bean drops his bus ticket on the floor and it is stuck to a chicken’s leg and he chases the chicken all the way to a slaughterhouse.

^video of Mr Bean chasing the chicken

Additionally when I told the idea to Ms Lei she laughed so I thought since it was a good reaction I should go ahead with the idea

However I ran into problems with this concept because:

  1. I dont have a chicken
  2. I dont really want to make chicken sounds with my mouth

I thought about the idea for a few days and then one day, I bought a game called Sara Is Missing ( for $2.98 on the iTunes app store. It is a first person game where you are a person who found a random missing phone and the phone has a sentient AI inside which is obsessed with its owner, Sara.

This got me thinking about AIs and I remembered this AI online robot that I played with once called Eviebot. Eviebot is actually a terrible program and the things is says are pretty nonsensical and a lot of the time they don’t even relate to what you have just said to the robot. Then I thought that I could make use of the spoken words of Eviebot to use on my soundscape because they sound pretty hilarious and it would give this sort of sci-fi dystopian feel to the soundscape, like the Sara Is Missing game.

And hence my soundscape was born.



The main part of my soundscape would be the talking of the AI. While I could have taken the easy way out and used a computer program to generate the voice and make it say whatever I want, I felt this was too contrived and I wanted it to mimic what an AI program would actually say if it was spoken to. Hence I spent quite a bit of time sitting in front of my computer chatting with Eviebot, recording her voice with a Zoom recorder. It took some time and manipulation to get it to say what I want but in the end I managed to harvest a good amount of choice phrases for my soundscape (:

I used a mixture of downloaded and self-recorded sounds. Things like computer alert noises and the heartbeat heard at the end of the soundscape were taken from a royalty free sounds website while everything else was recorded by yours truly.

If you have noticed, throughout the entire video the breathing of the person is audible. This is to make the listener constantly aware of the presence of the person and serves as a reminder of his mortality, separating him as a silent human from the vocal AI.


Initially I was not sure if I was allowed to use the spoken words of the robot in my soundscape since Ms Lei mentioned that we are not allowed to use dialogue. However I thought about it and I went to google and apparently the definition of dialogue is “a conversation between two or more people as a feature of a book, play, or film” so since the AI is not a human it doesn’t count as a dialogue (:

Then I thought about it even further and I realised that although people these days often use AIs and computers/technology to replace human contact and interaction, in reality the computer can only tell us what we have commanded it to say so really a conversation with an AI is like an introspection into yourself. My soundscape challenges the idea of the possibility of true discourse with a computer because no matter how close technology can mimic reality, at the end of the day it is nothing more than what we make it out to be.

4D II Project 1 – Alter Ego


This video takes a satirical look into some of my personal traits, namely self-absorbedness, self pity and insecurities about what others think. The video begins with a scene of the actress strutting down hallways, pausing dramatically to admire herself in the reflection on the glass. It also features the actress displaying her insecurity over her self image through a monologue where she states that she wears big coats because she wants to hide her “fat arms and ass” from the world. The video ends with several sequences of her crying and lamenting that people would “do this to me” when she had “slept so little last night”, providing a strong cathartic ending to an otherwise funny and lighthearted video.


Being that there was a 1 minute video, I decided to make it lighthearted and funny rather than make it too in depth as I feared there would not be enough time to explore many deeper emotions. The character I wanted to emulate was Kim Kardashian, who is a public figure notorious for being “famous for doing nothing” apart from using social media and engaging in frivolous activities.

As I wanted to use this chance to experience being behind the camera, I decided to make use of an actress rather than act the alter ego out personally. I wanted to use an actress who I knew shared my personality traits and would understand the tone of the video that I was going for, hence I approached my best friend Shirley who kindly agreed to be my actress.

As we are avid viewers of the reality TV show “Kepping Up with the Kardashians”, Shirley and I knew how to portray Kim and I’s similar traits well. To give ourselves inspiration and aid in the filming process, we spent some time reviewing clips of Kim Kardashian from interviews or past episodes of the reality show. Certain scenes of my video were actually re-enactments of videos of Kim, with our own twist attached. The crying scene, for example, is something that is also iconic to Kim as she is famous for having an “ugly cry” which I have too which is why I don’t cry in public :)))))

To me, the choice of music in the video was extremely important to setting the mood. I actually decided on the music before deciding on the character I would use! The song used was “Me Too” by Meghan Trainor and I remember hearing it for the first time and having imagined this video in my mind. To add to the bubblegum pop style of the video, I sped up the tempo of the song to make it more catchy and lighthearted.


To aid in our concept development, Ms Lei gave us some tasks which would help us in choosing a character. The first was to list out 5 fictional characters, my choices being:

Katniss Everdeen


BoJack Horseman

Eric Cartman


The second was to list out 5 public figures:

Kim Kardashian

Ellen Degeneres

Donald Trump

Malala Yousafzai

Kanye West

The third task, list out 5 characters that I knew personally:

Shirley Wang (best friend)

Cindy Chiang (mother)

Jacob Sze (Brother)

Joel Sim (best friend)

Shi Nai Xin (friend)

I then had to pick 1 character from each category based on their traits that I myself possess.

Bojack Horseman: Jaded, seeking excitement in life

Kim Kardashian: Self absorbed, insecure about self image

Jacob Sze: Funny, brave, a lot of self conviction


To me it was important to pick a character that was recognisable to others, so that they would be able to understand why I shared the particular traits of the character.

This film was my first time shooting a video on my own with a digital camera, as well as editing it, and this did cause me some degree of anxiety. However, I was able to make use of my existing knowledge of cameras as well as what I learned in the previous semester (and also some help from google) to shoot and edit successfully.