Our idea was to record ourselves singing and distort the audio file to a point where it does not resemble anything. The song we chose was ‘Happy Birthday’, and to add a twist, we sang in the stairwell for the most reverb. Reverb is commonly unwanted when people are recording for sounds as it would make it difficult for post editing. We also made it a point to sing out of tune with the song, as well as singing at different timings.
This is to make the song as incoherent as possible, going against every possible taboo of voice recording.
These were the two words Brendan and I picked. It was exciting because these two body parts are vastly different from each other in terms of how they move as well as the small intricacies between parts.
To begin, an eye is one of the most delicate and intricate organsof the body as it is solely responsible for a sense. The eye is made up of both the eye ball as well as the eyelids.
The eyeball itself has a more circular motion, whereas the eyelids has a linear motion, similar to a shutter.
The second body part is more straightforward being an arm. I would say that there are two ways in which we could breakdown the arm, one being pivoting about an axis which would be the elbow, or it could also rotate about the shoulder socket.
We then begin to source for our sounds. Brendan and I decided to work on separate sounds.
My good sound of choice was coins being dispensed from the vending machine.
As you can tell, the sound of coins dropping has a distinctive sound which has a pleasant connotation when we hear it. Whenever a coin drops, we immediately look to the ground in search for it.
Due to the nature of coins, they also end up escaping our grasp as they tend to roll across the floor.
The sound is also piercing in nature, and has substantial reverb because the bouncing of coins when they were being dispensed.
My bad sound of choice was the sound of money being rejected from the vending machine, specifically the note dispenser. This is an especially annoying experience which many of us face when the machine refuses to accept our money.
This sound has a distinctive mechanical sound and it seems to mimic an extension and retraction of an arm. This sound would symbolise the pivoting of the arm about the elbow.
I wanted to incorporate the psychological aspects of the various sound samples I had. The psychological aspect of coins falling would be their fleeting presence as we struggle to chase after and reach for our money.
I wanted to capture the essence of movement for each of these sounds.
For a fleeting presence, I thought, what better way to represent something fleeting than birds? I thus began to blindly try and fold birds just by trial and error.
The similarities between a bird’s wing as well as batting of eyelids can also be drawn in the case of a hummingbird due to the quick repetition of the flapping of wings.
Because of this resemblance, I felt that it added another level of depth to the use of birds as it linked one of the body parts in as well.
The other keyword I wanted to portray was the reaching or the extension of an arm towards an object. It was difficult to create the illusion of movement with my paper models, however I made sure to have different layers in my paper model to show progress and action.
As you can see, the piercing action of the cone portrays the element of reaching, while the birds represent the money fleeting from the grasp. I did not want the cone to be smooth as the sounds created by the vending machines were sharp and piercing.
The third space exists through communication, primarily with the help of technology. It is the evolution of communication, to create an ever more immersive experience for any and every user.
As the third space is closely compared to the 4th dimension by Randall Packer, one of the biggest boundaries we face is ensuring full immersiveness of the physical consciousness. These can be alleviated with the use of more controlled settings, such as enclosed spaces furnished similarly. The use of other senses such as smell and touch would help envelop the audience in the experience as well.
The installation ‘Telematic dreaming’ by Paul Sermon (1993) is a prime example of using a private space of a bed to create the illusion and the sense of closeness.
Another way we can break the boundaries is with the interaction with more people. An example would be ‘hole-in-space’ by Kit Galloway and Sherrie Rabinowitz (1980) whereby people from different countries could interact with each other through an installation on the street. These busy streets across countries created the illusion of an actual street because of the sheer multitude of people, replicating similar environments.
In our micro Project, several ways we tried to create closeness was through the use of the same objects, or objects which would be correlated with each other. For example, the I was the person withdrawing the money using an ATM card. The usage of semiotics and sounds played a part in creating closeness. Another example would be the use of toilet paper in both settings, allowing for both parties to experience the same feeling of touch when interacting with the object.
Through Facebook live and several rounds of practice, this was made possible. The experience would have been more fluid if the latency was not as high. By anticipating the other party’s actions, we were able to connect with each other through the sense of accomplishment.
To start off, this is my proudest piece as I had the chance to explore a medium which I was passionate in, which is the use of mixed media such as inks and digital painting.
The animals represented in this piece are critically endangered animals – this brings about a more pressing message that we have to treasure the animals and the environment around us as they are slowly disappearing.
In this composition, I used semiotics such as the camera viewfinder to portray the look of a photographer.
As mentioned during the presentation, I strive to be useful in all situations and to adapt well in new environments. To show this, I used a Swiss Army Knife as it is versatile and readily accessible.
The background is mustard yellow/orange (as some of you may see it) to represent the construction tools and the idea of utility.
I finally settled upon this composition as it best portrays the amount of time I spend in bed! How I am still able to remain in bed even though the sun is shining into my face.
The warm colours brings about calm and bliss emotions, meant to make the viewer feel at ease. I also wanted to capture the comfort of my bed which is portrayed by the pillow alphabets and soft tones.
This was the piece which I was most uncertain about, and yet also most pleased with the outcome. I managed to capture the essence of a worm burrowing through a book, similar to how I tend to get so engrossed in novels that I completely lose track of the time.
The worn look of the book also adds the context that this book has been well read.
Overall, I am proud of the outcome of these pieces! I wanted to explore new mediums of art as I wanted to push the limits of my creativity and gain some experience in working with physical objects.
As we usher in the new age of technology, I am pleased to say that something as timeless as art – is also evolving.
Throughout the ages, artists have kept their techniques and skills required to produce their work close to themselves, in fear of other artists ‘stealing’ their style. Artists have also rightly wanted their work to be a reflection or representation of themselves, which is why they seldom work in groups.
However, come the dawning of the technological era, we find that more and more artists are collaborating via means of the internet to form spectacular pieces of work. Artists are also involving more of the audience into their work, often in the process of creation.
The article brought up comments made by Claire Bishop, whereby she tries to undermine the progress of media art and at the same time give a misinterpretation of the movement or the tend.
“Bishop bypasses, discussing the relevance of ‘media art’ as part of contemporary art culture, and relegates it into what she terms as a ‘specialist sphere’.“
This was a move to potentially dissuade artist from entering the field to adhere to her elitist stance on art and how it is only meant to be created by selected skilled artists.
We were tasked to create an artwork using the method of crowd sourcing, similar to the works of Yoko Ono’s Conceptual Art Performance.
The concept for our project was to give the public access to an Instagram account, persuading the audience to upload an object which consists of their favourite colour.
What we intended for the outcome was to create a colour wheel or palate combining all the different objects.
One of the ‘issues’ we faced was audiences not providing us with appropriate image which we could use. This could be in the form of images found online (which would not be considered as objects).
As funny as this may seem, it would be one of the various challenges which may surface if crowd sourcing your art as there is no definitive way of ensuring that everyone follows according to your guidelines.
The issue can be addressed by simply having more people send in their images, however, with a limited amount of time, these images became a scarce resource and we had no choice but to use them.
The results differ in relation to Yoko Ono’s work as the rules are not as defined and there isn’t the element of responsibility or accountability when people upload their image, whereas for Yoko Ono’s work, the audience is able to judge if a participant ‘goes too far’ or against her human rights.
I would like to quote the movie Cloud Atlas.
The audience may feel as though their contribution is inadequate, however, when pieced together, it forms a collective image and it sends a definitive message that everyone has a part in the creation.
“Artists have also rightly wanted their work to be a reflection or representation of themselves, which is why they seldom work in groups.”
Relating back to this quote, I feel that this experimental piece goes against traditional artistic modes and creations.
I was part of the team as the cinematographer, a term I haven’t heard before in my life before this project commenced. I was tasked to curate the styles and the looks of the shots, which meant I had to work closely with Hui En to design the looks of the set.
I also ran through the talent and director what kind of gestures or bodily movements I wanted the talent to show, to convey subtle messages.
I will begin with the idealisation of the installation, before we go into the execution.
I have inserted several pages from our installation proposal to give you a refresher on our installation.
Driven by the concept of being in the mind of a serial killer and their motives, we begin to explore what ways we could make this installation intimate for our audience as well as provide them with a sense of realism.
Character development was left to Hannah, while Hui En and I looked at ways to make the sets more realistic.
I started to research on shows which involved serial killers and one of the biggest influences in some of my shots was from Dexter.
Dexter is a show about a serial killer named Dexter who goes around killing other serial killers (funny how that works, huh).
As we had to recreate scenes of Hannah killing her targets, I went to watch scenes of how Dexter hunts for his prey and eventually kills them.
The killing scene happens around the 3 minute mark but in the video you notice how Dexter directly engages his prey in a hostile manner. For our video, we did this in a more subtle manner, luring the target to a more secluded area.
Dexter is iconic for being meticulous in the execution of his victims, planning every step from stalking, to killing and eventually disposing of the body. This is to make sure that he does not get caught. His ‘kill room’ is always lined with plastic to ensure that he does not leave any trace of evidence behind.
In this scene of our installation, Hannah uses a rope to kill her victim, similar to how Dexter did it. However as Hannah is smaller as compared to the victim, she has to put up a considerable amount of fight to take him down.
We also had to make the shot believable, thus, I had to ask Deryck (our prey) to slam Hannah against the wall to show that he tries to put up a fight.
The shots cycle between the room and the corridor to capture the thought of having such a sinister even happening in such close proximity to us.
In the final scene you can also see that I lined the table with plastic, similar to how Dexter does it before he dismembers his victim to dispose of them. Although the amount of plastic we used pales in comparison to what Dexter uses, it shows that Hannah is becoming more proficient and systematic with her killing.
(Second kill scene)
I will now breakdown the first killing scene. This would allow you to identify how much the killing pattern of Hannah has changed.
(First kill Scene)
As you can see, Hannah stabs her victim in this scene which shows her lack of planning as she just used whatever weapon she had which was readily accessible at that point in time.
It was crucial for Hannah to pace back and forth as it shows how nervous she was for this kill, a great contrast from her second kill as she was much more prepared for that.
I also told Hannah to greatly exaggerate the stabbing motion as initially, it was difficult to see that she was holding a knife. I told her to drag her arm out as far as possible to best capture the idea of stabbing.
After killing Shi Min, you can see Hannah frantically peering out the corridor, making sure that no one heard her awful deed. Again, a huge difference from the calm Hannah which walked out of the initial room as though nothing had happened.
The CCTV shots progressively get darker and less dynamic in terms of people as we try to show her state of mind deteriorating from a cheery and outgoing person to one which is more isolated, thus the darker settings.
The scenes for the day time vlogs were fairly straightforward as there was adequate lighting in her room.
One thing I wanted Hannah to do was to constantly play with her Swiss Army Knife in the vlogs. This would be a foreshadowing to an event crucial to the story.
For the night scenes however, I had to recreate the lighting in the room to make it believable. For starters, we placed the table lamp as far back as possible and we used a high quality light diffuser (aka toilet paper) to ensure that Hannah’s face would not be too blown out during the takes.
This is the result:
Canted/dutch angle shots
We wanted to experiment with using canted shots to show her slowly slipping into her disorientated state of mind.
If you look closely, you can see me peaking at the edge of the table trying to get the perfect shot. We used a high quality tripod (aka our wallets) to get the camera in angle for the shot.
This take was a extremely tricky as we had to coordinate many parts.
The sequence was:
Hannah frantically opens the door, whilst holding her camera in one hand.
As Hannah enters the dark room, she walks to the table to put the camera down in a canted angle
Initially, what we did to try and capture the shots was by having Hannah enter the room and hand me the camera to get it in place.
However, we could not coordinate it well as it was an awkward position for me to get into, which would result in the shot becoming shakey.
Therefore, we decided to split the sequence into two parts, cutting the scene as she enters the dark room. This gave us ample time to set up the dutch angle shot without all of the shake and distortion.
As this was a pivotal shot showing her spiral into her new state of mind, we wanted this shot to be intimate, only showing the crucial elements. Thus, the only light source in this shot was from the laptop.
Also, all those fiddling with the Swiss Army Knife is explained as she uses it for her first kill.
This is the final product.
Next, we move on to more complex lighting situations.
To start off, we have the scene where she first finds her new hideout.
I wanted both the light source and the camera to be below Hannah as it would show that she hasn’t moved in any proper furniture to place the light and camera on anything.
I also made sure to have the tint of red lighting as minimal as possible at the start.
Slowly as the vlogs progress, the red tint subtly becomes stronger, giving the audience a glimpse of how she is becoming more and more sinister with her actions.
The red lighting was not only use for aesthetics as they served an additional narrative. Within the installation, you can find these images of various classmates on sheets of paper.
Fine tuning the red lighting. This was the final vlog we had to shoot and as you can see, the red light is at its maximum.
This tethers a little into art direction, but the images posted on the wall were made to seem as though they were developed using a film camera, hence the use of red lighting.
I referenced the style used in Narcos as they were profiling individual drug lords. The black and white images gave a stylized look to the board which was what I wanted to convey.
Towards the end of the vlog, just before Hannah goes to murder Hui En, I told Hannah to ensure that the knife blade reflects the light off the screen as it was difficult for the audience to tell that she was holding a blade.
Here, you can see us in action as we play around with the lighting, finding the best way to capture the intended effect!
On Fendi’s OSS, you can see that he actively documents our shots and behind the scenes!
We made sure to have articles pertaining to different topics such as Car accidents, mental health, articles on university scholarships and bursaries, murder and crime (especially serial killers) and photos of locations.
This was to keep everything in line with the theme as we felt that if we just placed random articles on the board, it would not make sense and it would spoil the immersive sensation of the installation.
The articles also had to work well with one another. Meaning that they could be related to one another.
As you can see from a close up below, the two murders are actually linked together. These are some details which people may have missed on the actual day.
We made a total of 2 conspiracy boards, each in different locations. The first conspiracy board was made in one of the computer labs.
Initially we wanted to film the vlogs in the actual stairwell, however, we realised that recording audio there would be difficult as the place is echo’y and would result in a lot of reverb in the audio.
In hindsight, it was a good idea to film at the computer lab as we ended up spending a good 8 hours putting everything together.
I cannot imagine the discomfort we would have faced if we were filming constantly in the stairwell with a lack of ventilation.
The first mood board we created:
How it looks like with ominous red lighting:
On the day before the submission, we set up the final conspiracy board:
Alas! We start on our process! All of my raw sketches and conceptualisation have been placed in my CPJ! But fret not, because I also have digital sketches to show!
I will summarise my conceptualisation process as most of it is in my CPJ. In essence, as my family raised me up to be cautious of my health, my parents always encouraged me to eat healthily and exercise regularly. This has benefited me in a plethora of ways as I often feel more motivated to accomplish more things and I find myself getting tired less often.
Thus, I wanted the direction of my work to incorporate elements of both food and exercise as it is what makes for a healthy lifestyle.
Before I further explored this concept, I had the idea of personifying myself as a dog as I felt that they were very active creatures and would accurately depict me. This was also inspired by one of the artists I found online!
However, as you flip through my CPJ, you can see that I tried sketching out huskies… But they look terrible and to capture their look accurately, I had to add in a lot more elements which was not what I wanted for my work.
So I decided to scrape that idea and I went on with creating illustrations of myself!
Notably, some of the faces are similar as I was still in the midst of creating my equations and I was unsure of what expressions I should illustrate! Trying to incorporate this idea into my work, I began illustrating my first equation.
Me Studying in Warm Room + Swimming Pool = Me Cooling Down
This was my first digital sketch of the equation.
At this point in time, I was just trying to come up with the concept and composition for my work, which is why I did not play around with colours just yet.
Slowly, as reflected in my CPJ, I had the idea of incorporating kitchen appliances and food into my equations!
Thus, I had the idea of using an oven to represent a warm room!
This was the initial idea i came up with! I brought this to Mimi and she commented that it was not very clear that it was an oven and that the composition was too tight, making it uneasy for the viewers.
She asked me to look into other ways I could represent an oven in my composition.
As I was watching a short animated film, I saw this perspective of an oven which I really liked.
The perspective was from the inside of the oven, as opposed to it being from the outside as seen below. I felt that this created a much better composition and I was able to convey the message of me studying in it much better.
I used darker hues of pink to represent the warmth of the oven. I also made sure to pay attention to the lighting of the oven as I wanted it to be as clear as possible.
I also took Mimi’s suggestion of illustrating the entire frame before cropping it down as it would make sure that I am not limiting myself in any way.
I faced the most difficulty when I was trying to illustrate the oatmeal as it was hard to capture the different textures and tones. I also changed the initial colour of the table from blue to a warmer brown to make it in line with the theme of warmth.
Next, we have the pool frame. The composition for this gave me a headache as well as I did not know how to capture the look of a milk carton well to show the idea of a swimming pool. I took several pictures of a half cut milk carton to try and visualise the perspective better!
I also have several inital sketches of my milk carton and how I wanted it to look like.
This perspective would be one whereby the viewer has open the top flaps of the milk carton and is peering into it. This was tricky to capture, and the angles presented would make it difficult for me to frame it well.
I illustrated this and brought it to Mimi on the second consultation and she told me that i should not have filled the frame with the milk carton as it left very little breathing space for the viewer and it would leave them feeling uncomfortable.
I took her advice and i gave the milk carton a lot more breathing space. The new composition also allowed me to play around with more colours, making it more aesthetic.
Some comments from Mimi on the actual submission day was that the perspective could be changed a little as the horizon has to be slightly higher than where it is now.
Next we have my final frame. I wanted a dynamic composition for this frame but I found it hard to show it as the milk carton did not give me much room to work with.
I tried using a beach chair to represent relaxation but I felt that it did not fit the theme I was driving across.
Mimi suggested that I could have the oat jumping into the water, however, I felt that it would remove the element of exercise if I did that as it would only look like i was at the pool to have fun. Which is why I decided to go ahead with the conventional pose for swimming which is a freestyle stroke.
Colour scheme I used:
Unrefined Me + Hostile Gym = A Better Me
This is the first sketch I came up with for this equation. I wanted to show how an environment where people may find intimidating, could be somewhere where I sought comfort in. To me, this place was the gym.
After showing Mimi this frame, she told me that the end result was too similar and expected together with my other frames (as you will see).
This was also before I had the idea of incorporating kitchen appliances into my compositions.
I decided to use an egg to represent me as eggs are high in protein and it is essential for muscle growth! A little fun fact, before I entered university, my breakfast would consist of 3 eggs, a bowl of oats and milk.
I played around with different views for this frame.
Eventually, as seen in my CPJ, I went with the idea of having the egg in a tray as it would fit the frame better and it would make more sense through the equation as eventually, the uncooked egg becomes hard boiled.
Next, instead of a physical gym, I used the soft boiled egg cooker to represent the gym. As you would have to use boiling water to cook the eggs, it ties in with the whole concept of a hostile environment!
Upon Mimi’s advice, I added in steam and bubbles to further convey the idea of it being a stuffy environment.
A better me was represented by me breaking out of the shell and becoming a hard boiled egg! I spent a lot of time trying to draw the egg shells as i wanted to make sure people could understand the composition, similar to how a caterpillar morphs into a butterfly!
I fiddled with the composition further as well as I could not decide which colours I wanted to use.
I felt that yellow and pink would represent the idea of hope and a brand new me better, however it would not be in theme of the colour! Whereas blue and pink would work well with the entire equation but it would not stand out as much.
I also had parts of the weights and shell protruding out of the circle frame, however I felt that if I was not able to constantly use this effect in my other equations or frames, the design would become inconsistent.
Colour scheme used:
Chilled Me + Running Track = Me Dying from Heat
Next, I wanted to show some form of exercise which I did not enjoy! For me, this was running as I hate running because of how sticky and smelly I become afterwards.
To show this, I personified myself as a piece of chicken breast.
I initially wanted to show myself on a plate in a fridge, showing how relaxed I was. This can be seen from my CPJ. I soon realised that the composition would become too cluttered with objects and that would take the attention away from the main object.
I went with the use of chicken sold in Cold Storage as they are always sold in the refrigerated sections and packaged in a foam box with cling wrap.
I initially added some symbolical elements such as a cold drink along with the chicken breast as well as more food packaging labels. But I realised that it over complicated the design.
In the end, I went with a more simple composition to drive the message across.
This frame brought me the most frustration out of everything as I struggled to find a suitable way to depict a running track. The skewed perspective of a running track also proved to be an issue as it was difficult to get it in perspective to look realistic.
I had some trouble with the vectors in illustrator which is why I exported the image onto photoshop to edit the colours.
I used warmer colours to show how the running track would be hot and suffocating.
I experimented with different types of chicken breast here, however, when I asked my friends to take a look at my illustrations, they would not get the link between the images as the chicken breast changes. I decided to use the original illustration, but add shades of brown to it so that it looks cooked. I added grill marks to make the effect more apparent.
The finishing touch would be me lying in a puddle of my own sweat. Again, I used rose quarts to depict a warm environment.
Colour Scheme used
Me Under Pressure + Parks = Me at Ease
This was the first sketch I made of this frame. It was supposed to depict how nature provides me with tranquility and calms me down. As what Mimi said, my initial sketches were very predictable which was why I changed them.
To show this, I used edamame. A type of Japanese bean! When I went to Mimi with this idea, she told me that squeezing the pod is not how people would normally eat this food! I told her that it further adds a comedic element to it as it was exactly how I tried opening the pod the first time I ate it! This external stress would convey well when the pod explodes!
This was a fun composition to come up with and I felt that the colours really tie in well with each other. I wanted to depict a forest using only vegetables I eat to show healthy living. I included tomatoes, broccoli, baby carrots, lettuce and romaine lettuce to the composition.
I had to tone down the reds of the tomato to a more subtle pink as the colour was too strong and not in line with the pastel theme.
Salad!! Oddly one of my favourite things to eat. My mom always prepares too much salad for my family to finish which is why they always expect me to eat the remaining vegetables left.
For this frame, I used the same vegetables as the ones I used in the park to create a salad bowl.
Welcome. It is the year 2050, where mankind have found a way to build structures higher than ever before. But before we delve into this futuristic world, let us see what brought them here.
It all began with a sound – a tune. This tune was fabricated by the most masterful musicians the world could find. This would be used as the inspiration for the city.
You cannot help but feel a sense of serenity when as the tune is being played. Composed of different instruments, each brings a new idea and elements to the development of the city.
The team took the best elements from their individual mood boxes and placed them into the group mood box.
Zig Zag Block – The rough sounds of the zigzag block is consistent throughout the piece. To demonstrate this, we took a hard wire mesh and warped it to form a spiral through the entire frame. The rough and prickly texture was to represent the unevenness of the Zig Zag Block.
Shaker – Like above, the shaker evoked a sense of falling beads or water. To show this, we cut up pieces of blue acrylic in the shape of triangles and hung them off fishing lines to represent rain cutting through the voids.
Wooden Blocks –The wooden blocks appears several times thoughout our composition and it pierces the rhythm of the constant sound the Zig Zag Blocks make. This was represented by the penetration of the wire mesh by the wooden sticks.
Tone Bars and Void – The tone bar was a final note before silence. The sound seemed to linger in the air before dissipating. To show this, we used cotton wool and we attached it to the top of the wire mesh, outside of the entire frame. It was crucial for the cotton wool to be outside the frame as we wanted to show how it slowly fades into the air.
Moving on to the construction of our city!
The builders had many ideas for how their city would look like. As the builders of this city felt that the sound used for the inspiration had many elements of serenity and tranquility, we wanted to explore that idea.
One element that often popped up during discussions was the use of water for our city. By incorporating water into the city, we could use it as a viable means of transport.
We begin with several sketches.
After looking at the sketch, the builders decided to look for what kind of modular structures they could incorporate into their model. What better way to source for inspiration than mother nature herself.
They looked into various habitats in the sea. Coral reefs were one of the biggest inspiration for their ideas. They also looked into sea creatures which live amongst these habitats! Most notably, fishes and turtles. The scales of fishes form a unique over lapping structure which protects them from predators as well as reducing drag underwater.
Next, we have turtles! Their shell closely resembles that of fishes as they have a shape similar to a pentagon.
As the brainstorming continued, one of the builders started to get hungry and his mind started drifting off. However, as he was lost in his world, he found a eureka moment! Nagashi Somen (Bamboo noodles) came into his mind for the use of a modular structure.
Bamboo has been widely used for construction in Japan (our builder happens to also be half japanese) and we delved into researching the types of structures we could create using bamboo.
As they initially wanted to incorporate the use of water in the city, bamboo was the perfect choice as it is waterproof as well as light which made it a versatile material to use.
They also incorporated elements of coral reefs into the concept, by using the modular structures of the corals as the habitat.
The idea was to have a central canal which would run through the entire city, providing them with a highway for commuting. We would also have different levels to the city, which was inspired by Bamboo fountains.
However, as the builders brought their ideas to the Governor, she warned us that the materials required would be too expensive and it would also be difficult to construct as the material is rigid and difficult to manipulate without proper equipment. The governor generously shared her wisdom with the builders and advised them to use PVC piping instead. This would result in a easier material to work with as well as saving them money.
It was back to the drawing board with their idea as they could not execute the multi-tier city anymore as it would look out of place using bamboo. With the use of PVC piping, it evoked a more futuristic look.
As they re-imagined the city, they started to look for ideas on what would make it look like a futuristic city. When they thought of cities, extremely high-rise buildings comes into mind. This gave them the idea to create the illusion of having a ‘floating’ city with the use of mirrors.
They had many discussions on how to create such a look as there were many elements to consider such as the source for our materials and the execution as none of them have ever attempted something like this before. They came up with more sketches to try and envision how our city would look like.
There was also the problem of lighting. As light was crucial to create the illusion, they had to decide if we wanted the lighting to be on the buildings, or within the buildings.
They then settled for the lighting to be internal as it would have looked too forced if the lighting was from the outside. However, by having the lighting inside the buildings, they had to think of ways to place a strong enough light source within such a small area.
After they decided the look of the city, theystarted to source for inspiration on how our city would look like.
One of the inspirations was the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. This structure has a similar form to PVC piping and is a great place to begin. However, the structure looked too uniform and the builders realized that it would not make for a interesting composition when coupled with mirrors from their installation.
Once again, the builders were back to the drawing board. They decided to turn to nature again to source for their inspiration. Little did they know, that this process of looking to nature for inspiration is called biomimicry design, as explained by this video.
As the builders wanted to evoke the feeling and illusion of verticaility, we turned to structures which seem to be spanning upwards.
DNA’s structure has a spiral form and the spiral implies a direction. This was useful research as the builders could incorporate this into the design of the city to give it the look of ascension.
They also started to source for structures which may have similar qualities.
This is the F & F Tower located in the city of Panama. The spiral gives the illusion of the building reaching into the sky.
As the city would be located within a dark area to make full use of the illusion of an infinite building, it had to be located in a dark area. The builders set out to find a suitable location for their city.
They stumbled upon this obscure place, one that has been left untouched for ages… it almost seemed as though there used to be another civilization which lived there…
This location seemed to be in line with the theme of verticality as well as their choice of materials which made it a perfect location. The eyes are naturally drawn upwards because of all the lines the pipe creates, giving the sense of voids within the space.
With everything in place, they set forth to build the city!
They began by building a prototype based on the various inspirations which they found.
The builders wanted to incorporate the spiral into their composition. They also left holes between each module which represented a window.
With the structure in mind, they set out to purchase the needed materials to build the structure.
They first began by selecting pipes of different sizes and materials. After which, they proceeded to create the hub.
The pipes were stuck together using Blu-tac initially to ensure that the builders could still change the design if there was any additional feedback.
Slowly, the city was coming together.
One Way Mirror
Next, the builders had to source for a one way mirror. As purchasing one would be too expensive for them, they managed to find a seller which offered one way mirror films. This was much less expensive and it allowed us to work with more materials.
The mounting of the film was a tricky process, however, after the first failed attempt, our builders managed to apply the film onto the acrylic board properly, with minimal bubbles.
If you look closely at the image below, you can see that small bubbles of impurities have appeared on the surface. The team was not satisfied with this craftsmanship which was why they decided to try again, this time in a more sterile environment.
The second attempt was much more successful as we had the proper tools to do the job and we had a smooth surface. As you can see, one of our skilled builders making sure that the impurities were a thing of the past.
The film was applied masterfully thanks to the dexterity of Hannah!
After sorting out the one way mirror, the team moved on to find out what is the best way to light their structure.
Initially, the team used a wooden frame for their model. However, this distracted the audience from the full experience as the frame could be seen in the mirror.
The team then changed the frame by using flat boards instead of long pieces of wood so that the edges would be flush against each other.
The builders then spray painted the sides to be glossy so as to reflect more light from the city.
This was the biggest trouble the builders faced as the light source had to be strong enough to produce the full effect. We had a variety of sources of light, however, all of them had to be connected to a socket which was tough because there was no sockets around the obscure location.
These were some of the lights which the team found but could not use.
LED Strips from IKEA.
Strip LED lights
We had to source for battery operated lights.
Thankfully, we were able to find strong LED lights used for hiking and biking.
The team attached two of these onto both the top and bottom of the hubs to increase the intensity of the light. For greater measure, the team lined the inside of the pipes to allow the light to bounce off the walls better.
This directional light was God sent as we used it to light the habitats.
The highway was put together using straws. The team had them descending as they wanted them to join with the main structures of the city.
Putting the City together
People up working late at night in the hub. Society has found a way to do away with sleep.
Due to the height of these structures, residents are required to travel with an orb as the atmosphere is too thin, resulting in little oxygen in the air.
More close ups on the city
Overall, I’ve grown tremendously during this first semester in terms of craftsmanship as well as idealisation. I realised that no one form of art can be compartmentalised and separated from each other as they can all be interwoven with each other.
Despite my confusions at the start of this assignment, I was really glad how it all came together nicely once we took a step back to look at the results. It is amazing how such a seemingly insignificant tune of less than 30 seconds could convey such a strong message when we break it down to its individual components.
I feel that breaking down elements to their dominant, sub dominant and sub ordinate can be applied in all forms of art, design and media as we have progressed through all of the past assignments in this semester.
Thank you Cheryl for being such an inspiration to your students and to me!
Overall, I am very pleased with how everything turned out in the end! I really enjoyed this assignment as I got to experience a traditional print medium which was screen printing!! (Spoiler alert: It is really tough and I have so much respect for people who used to do it)
Here are some of the shots of my process of silkscreening my classmates kindly helped me take.
This is a comparison between my first screen and my final screen! I noticed the loss of details in the first print which is why I refined the second one to add in more details.
The details really brought a lot more out of my composition and it looked great on my bag!
Thank you everyone for your help!!
(Special mention to this song for setting the mood when I was about to print onto my tote bag)