Project 1: Image Making Through Type – Process

Criminal

This was the texture I found to use for my type. It is very much like the reference picture from my research; it looks like scratches and deterioration.

This was my first test with applying jpg. texture in Illustrator on my own after the tutorial class. It is the visual representation for the personalities of criminals – rugged, rotten, dirty etc. Here, I applied it to my entire name floating in the centre of the page which did not make sense.

This time I had them ‘stand’ in a row.  I also got feedback that the type should be in different sizes because people are of all shapes – thin, tall, fat, stout and so on. With that, I could only apply a number of letters and I settled for these three. To complete, I gave then each a panel to hold onto for identification. Then intensified the lighting to bring in more drama.

Dream Seller

At first, I chose a script font and printed it on paper then sketched over it to change its original shape, to form letter bottles.

They look like this after I traced and coloured them.

I went to search for ways to help me create the ‘fairy lights’ in the bottle that were to represent dreams.

I tried it out on the bottles!

Things were looking flat and boring and I got many comments suggesting to make it 3D, create more depth and such. So I tried making the background darker to bring out the illumination of the bottles. I also got help from my cousin on drawing highlights and shadows. My drawing skills were lacking and I could not identify where the highlights and shadows should go. So this method did not work for me.

The background colour was picked from this quilt pattern found from google. It is sort of a bedtime blue which was perfect for the dream setting.

After much searching I was able to find a tutorial on making glass type in photoshop.

Combining all the knowledge that I have acquired from the previous I put together the final piece. Rendering photoshop clouds for the background for a mystifying effect. The hand gestures to offer the products as if selling. Then I tweaked the blending filters to make it seem more natural.

Gardener

This one was a little tricky to get. Even using letters as a base, the results still came out ‘wrong’. Not the effect that we were looking for.

To fix that, I avoided changing the shape of the original type. Then I applied the elements that suggested the job of a gardener.

I move the vectors into photoshop to apply textures and materials.

Treasure Hunter

The original sketch inked on paper, scanned. I followed the reference image to create the map look with the monsters.

This was the first sample. It did not seem complete.

Then I added some clouds and the compass sign for direction and it seem more like a map. I wanted the map to look real so I changed the background to a texture that was more realistic together with burnt edge paper.

The lines were too faded before so I duplicated them many times to thicken it. Added another letter because I realised the brief said at least 2 and it actually completed the composition with implied lines and with ties in with the idea of traveling. Burnt marks were added to bring out the feeling of danger.

I tried burning the paper myself and the results were much more satisfying. You could not just see but actually feel what the paper had been through.

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L1 201 – Set Up

In this project, not only did I play the role of Sarah in the video, I was also mostly in-charge of setting up the installation along with Azizah. We had two elements to our installation – the locker and the video.

Installation (Locker):

Locker References

She was hardworking, obedient and a very sentimental person. She would keep things significant to the events that happened to the relationship and we wanted to reflect that in the installation. For Sarah’s locker, we were looking for something plain, practical and organised. Since she led 2 different lives we divided the locker into 2 with a shelf/stand.

Locker is labeled for audience to find it easily
Locker Installation

The top shelf is where she kept her academic belongings such as textbooks and assessment books or her calculator. The bottom shelf is where she hid her secret relationship. The top shelf being on eye level meant that visitors will see that first before venturing to the other sections of the locker; just like how Sarah kept her relationship secret.

Top shelf includes textbooks, umbrella, calculator and some paint, palettes and paint brushes.

Secret #1

The box is doodled to show Sarah’s artistic talent and her love for Denise. There are also subtle hints of their relationship on the box e.g. you can see 2 girls at 2 corners of the box.

Inside the movie memory box includes 2 bottles of empty coke, an empty popcorn carton and a Karaoke student membership card.

Secret #2

The jar of quotes dear to the couple that also links back to Sarah’s blog.

List of Quotes:

1) I don’t know how you are so familiar to me—or why it feels less like I am getting to know you and more as though I am remembering who you are.

2) Every smile, every whisper brings me closer to the impossible conclusion that I have known you before, I have loved you before—in another time, a different place—some other existence.
”

3) I love you more than love allows.

4) “Here in time,
you are mine;
my heart has not
sung louder.

5) I do not know
why I love you so—
the clock knows not
its hour.”

6) I can’t get close enough.

7) Your smile sort of looks like it makes flowers grow

8) You are so special – how did the universe come up with you?

9) I try to think of a word that is closest to love, and the only thing that comes to mind is your name.

Secret #3

The calendar indicated the start, end and significant events in their relationship.

The Calendar starts with the current month – November because the locker the depiction of the present. The video in the past and the blog tells the full story.

Secret #4

Museum brochures. These are the outings that they’ve been on together. We made sure that brochures place within the duration of which they dated.

Secret #5

We also had a stalk of wilted red rose to show that their forlorn love is in the past. The flower was also carefully place beside the drawing of Denise in the sketchbook.

Installation (Video):

The site
Setting up projector on top of lockers

Originally we planned to display the video on the wall on the right. But the lockers were too high and because of the narrow space, the video was too small for the height.

Upside down problem
Projection is too small
Projection on curve pillar

We then thought to put our projection on the pillar to guide our audience towards the designated locker. This also solves the small projection problem as having it on a smaller surface area makes its size look just right. There is just too much empty space on the flat wall.

Projection on curve pillar (eye level)

I really like having the projection at a low level because of its obscurity but we decided to have it on eye level for easy viewing.

Unsteady chair for trial set up

We had trouble finding the right chairs for our set up. The first was too small and curvy to hold the projector upright. In the end we borrowed a chair and a stand from the drawing studio.

Final set up
Original Idea for video projection

We really liked the idea of projecting the video on a collage of pictures as if it is a flashback of memories. The images used were screenshots from the video.

Fail projection

Sadly it didn’t work because the images that we printed were too colourful and it fought for attention.

Images around projection

We had the pictured around the projection instead.

You can see more about our set up at Azizah’s post ->  https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/nura0069/interactive-storytelling-l1-201/

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L1 201 – Process

Proposal:

https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/nura0069/interactive-storytelling-proposal/

Our first proposal was rejected because our character personalities were too vague and there were too many elements that we wanted to address. We had the conservative parents, the lesbian relationship and cancer for extra dramatization. It was too complicated. Thus we narrowed the story down. Focusing on just Sarah, a star student holding on to a forbidden forlorn relationship.

What draws them together?
– Common love of art: for Sarah, it is an escape from the rigid structures of her life. Denise isn’t very good at drawing but she appreciates art for its beauty (which she thinks is very important in life)
– Opposites attract: Sarah drawn to Denise for her extroverted, charismatic personality, which is what she cannot be. Denise drawn to Sarah for her meticulous, detailed drawings and gentle personality.
– Denise draws Sarah out of her shell, teaches her how to live life on the edge.

Why did they break up?
– Sarah’s timid nature starts to get on Denise’s nerves. Denise thinks she’s not adventurous and not living life enough, starts to get bored of her and thinks Sarah is weighing her down
– Denise finds the fact that they have to hide their relationship too annoying.
Sarah thinks Denise is too crazy and doesn’t think through her actions enough. Things that previously she found cool, like Denise skipping school, starts to bother her
– It gradually becomes increasingly apparent how little they have in common
Fight about each other’s lifestyles
– Denise gets a new girlfriend who is equally as crazy, but Sarah cannot move on and keeps their gifts in her locker

The story is told in a non-linear narrative through a blog, a video and the locker installation. The blog would tell the whole narrative in text posts. The video is a flashback of happy memories and the locker shows how Sarah is unable to move on from her broken relationship with Denise.

Bala was in charge of all the writing so you may read more at her post-> https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/bala0043/4d-interactive-narrative/


Shooting:

Storyboard

I played the role of Sarah for this project. The shooting went fine other than the bad weather and the awkwardness of acting. It was quite a struggle restraining our laughter and getting into character for the intimate scenes.

The hugging scene was okay. Awkward level was rather low. It was the easiest to shoot.
The guitar was so long, we could not find a position that looked right for the scene. Leaning back was not right. Sitting up obstructed the guitar.

I was trying to seem infatuated but being a person who rarely show any expression it was difficult. Also because I cannot really control my face muscles for the desired effect I just look tired of Denise terrible guitar playing skills.

So we moved on to playing the piano together instead.
The scene where Sarah teaches Denise was difficult too as we both felt uncomfortable acting it out.
Then we also had to do a scene where we it hinted that we kissed. Referencing (), we cleverly did a pan away to suggest intimacy.
But, we did accidentally made a somewhat believable kiss scene. This did not make into the final cut because it was shot for the first proposal that was rejected.

I also had to do recording for the narration of the video which took several tries because we had to match the length of the video. Also because I had to get into character and try to carry Sarah’s emotions across. I was going for a solemn tone. Something serious, sad and empty. Something melancholic. I try to start out happy and sweet as if I was talking about a dream and change my tone at the end as it turns into a nightmare.

The narration script:

I remember our highs in hues,
like the color of her eyes
as the sun was setting;
the pale of her hands in mine,
and the blue of her smile.
I remember our sorrows in shades,
like the gray of the shadows,
which loomed that day,
and the white in her lie
when she promised to stay.

Original pacing lasted only 30 seconds and our video was a little over a minute.

Final recording of one minute after Syadza helped  guiding my tone and pacing. We counted about five seconds interval between each phrase.

Syadza was in charge of the video editing; you may head to her post for a more detailed explanation-> https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/syadza001/documentation-of-the-last-letter/

 

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Interactive Storytelling – Notes

3 Act Structure & Linear Narrative

http://www.elementsofcinema.com/screenwriting/three-act-structure/

Higgs, S. (2017). Finding Nemo in the Three-act Structure. Screen Education, (85), 90-97.

Linear Narrative

 

The 3 act structure is basically a linear narrative with more elements to it.

I did not have time to watch 2 hour long movies to study the story-lines and I know that we watched “I’m Here” in class. But I wanted to study something that we did not go through in class as an exercise. so I went to look back at some short animated films that caught my interest. One of them was Patchwork which really surprised me with its plot twist.

Act I

In Act I (Set up), they introduced the characters, background and aim of the story. We know that the characters is this man and this lady; presumably his wife or girlfriend. We also know that he is a sculptor and he is trying to create a realistic sculpture of the lady; who seems to have left him. (I think she is dead.) He is a perfectionist as he made many sculptures and still was not happy with any one of them although they all look beautiful to the audience. His frustration and anger also revealed that he is of violent nature.(probably why the lady left him, but that’s not the point) He sits down and looks at a flyer about speed dating which tells us that he might move one from the previous relationship which leads us to Act II. So basically, the man’s aim is to find a new significant other.

 

Act II part 1
Act II part 2
Act II part 3
Act II part 4

Act II is the longest. It shows the man meeting women after women during his speed date, unable to find one the he likes. According to the three act structure, this would possibly be the ‘obstacles’ where he is unable to find the one. The rising action also starts here where we see him circle certain body parts of the many women he meets during the speed dating sessions in a montage. It raises curiosity within the audience as to what the man is up to.

Act II part 5

At first I thought this is in act III but after some thought about it being a turning point ( a tragedy is about to happen) of the narrative, I decided it was the midpoint instead of the previous scene where he and the woman fell in love in the bar. A new aim is also established here.

Act III part 2

The rising action continues as the man invites the woman into his home, they dance and had a great time. Until he kills her which meets his aim and is the climax of act II. The descending action starts from here.

Act III part 3

Next we jump right into the climax of act III where we find out the one killed was the man and not the woman. (conflict unravels) The resolution was that she too was a serial killer and murdered him before he could murder her.


E.g. Memento (2000)

Non-linear Narrative

From what I understand, a non-linear narrative is told by going back and forth the story line; meaning the use of flashbacks. It is usually used to in detective/investigative genres to slowly reveal the case and have the audience piece the pieces together themselves.

Plot VS Story

“The plot goes beyond the story world by presenting non-digetic images and sounds which may affect our understanding of the story.”

“the story; the exterior; sum total of all the events in the narrative and events that are not presented (inferred events or character’s interior world”

Because a non-linear narrative does not necessarily starts from the start and jumps around the timeline of events the plot and story needs to be established clearly to create  a proper narrative in the minds of the audience.

E.g. Joint Security Area (JSA)
E.g. Citizen Kane

This short animation from Overwatch had a short flashback where the good robot now taps into the memory of a fallen comrade and learns his origins and purpose. Despite that short scene it actually feels like a linear narrative because the robot initiated the flashback??? Because usually, like memento, the flashbacks are skillfully cut and transited…  This is non-linear.


Multi-linear Narrative

https://penandthepad.com/multiple-narrative-1808.html

“A multiple narrative describes a type of story that follows several protagonists rather than focusing on one main character. ” These multiple narratives came from traditional theater for example… (they happened to both be musicals)

Les Misérables
Into the Woods

This type of narrative is very interesting. Its quite similar to non-linear narrative as the audience has to piece multiple stories together on their own. However, there is a lot of planning involve in creating the characters for a more dynamic story with no stereotypes.


Story Ideation (Rejected)

There are many topics that I am interested in – Placebo effect, Butterfly effect, Schizophrenia etc. But they weren’t giving me any inspiration. I thought of dyslexia which was also one of the things that I had wondered about. My cousin has dyslexia and he is actually really smart and has a great memory yet he does so poorly in school. Why does it happen? What does he see when he reads? This topic is much closer to home, I could ask him some questions and the results would be more realistic.

However, after discussing with the group the idea was dismissed as we favored the lockers as our location. The story that I proposed was not revolving around the locker so it was rejected; sadly.

Obscure City of Voids – Final part 3 (Group)

Original – Ideation:

soumen toy

Originally we thought our music sounded quite Zen and the rhythm sticks reminded us of the bamboo falling in a bamboo fountain.

bamboo fountain

This is actually where the cylindrical modules came about. Bamboo.

sketch of our own bamboo fountain
city of coach
water slide highway
sketch of how hubs and habitats would be link by water slide highway
ideas of water engineering
after consultation. Cheryl suggested pipes and emphasized use of modules and repetition.

 

Reflection:

Overall, this project 間 MA’s Obscure City of Voids was really fun. Love seeing how we translate sound into space and forms. We learned about interacting with all five senses to produce an impact-full design. I learned how to be more creative, resourceful and spontaneous with my group. I would never have thought of pushing my limits to create an infinity box or sourcing for a cheap reflective one way film online. Its all thanks to everyone in my group for working so hard and Cheryl for supporting me in explaining Modular structure. Cheers to Cheryl and BAMBOOzle. Happy holidays. 😀

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Groupmate’s OSS:

https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/fendiyas001

https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/joel0035

https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/wong1064

Obscure City of Voids – Final part 2 (Group)

Behind the Scenes (extras):

Chosen site
fits only one person

Our original idea of putting the model in the fountain could not work as it was not allowed and not really obscure. So we wondered around and found the service duct which was super obscure and we had the idea of pipes so it fits the theme well. Our city was designed within the constrains of the space.

We bought different sizes
Original arrangement all flat on the ground; not appealing
Making sure there is a good mix of different heights and width
prototype

We made a small prototype using straws and a roll of sandpaper to see how the cylinders would look like together.

windows

The upward motion is so that we can achieve the infinity effect and link the reflections together.

piecing together the actual model

We also tried to apply some rhythm to the arrangement for more interesting look. And left holes for windows for light to come through.

Spray painting the elements

We spray painted some of the pipes orange for a nice pop of colour and contrast to the original grey; which could also brought about a new class of residents! The walls of our box was spray painted black to prevent any distractions and focus your eyes on the infinity effect. The length we had it glossy black to reflect the light while the breath we had it matte.

Main hub with habitats
Smaller hub with habitats

For the highway we used green straws. Green because it complements the orange quite well.

highway construction

First we glued them in pairs and then glue them downwards. We had difficulty assembling the highway as we could not do it outside the model.

Glueing it outside

We had to stick and break it a few times before getting it to move to the angle that we want. We wanted it to touch the significant parts of our model. (stated in the pdf)

Trying to decide where the highway should go

At first we wanted it to touch the top and bottom of the box for a similar effect to the main hub and habitats but it would have been too steep and there is not enough space for the length needed.

Cut off effect

Thus we decided it could just be a part of the city and the highway is leading to another part of the city. This portal that we made only brings you to one part of the city. To achieve this, we have some habitats cropped in the corners and sides. the reflections make them look whole and stepping a dimension portal or sort.

Cut off effect
final arrangement

We needed a one way mirror for the infinity effect to work so…

We make our own one way mirror.
Hannah squeegied it for better results because the first was full of bubbles.

We bought a reflective film and pasted it onto clear acrylic as an actual one way mirror would be too expensive for poor art students.

trimming the edges
Oooo~ reflective!

then we tested it… the results were amazing! 😀

the infinity effect
It really works!
In the actual site.

It doesn’t work with the lights on. It only works when the lights are on and the inside illuminated.

Led strip that didn’t work out
one direction. cylindrical torch light
we got 2 headlights for the hub

We also had difficulty finding the right lights. Originally we wanted to wire our own lights. But because we of the mirror that would definitely shatter under a drill we could not thread the wires through and decided to get electric battery powered lights.

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Obscure City of Voids – Mood Box (Group)

Sound:

 

The majority of my group chose to do composition 2 for our individual mood boxes because we really liked the sound of the metallophone ringing into the ‘void’. It was a better choice than the first that was just continuous sounds which did not provide any voids/breathing space. It would have been too cluttered. Plus we can’t create a city of voids without a void to begin with.

 

Final Model:

Labeled Moodbox

 

The zig-zaggie block is represented by a twisted wiremesh roll curling upwards because we felt that the sound was building up to the metallophone ‘ding’ at the end.

The metallophone is represented by a cotton ‘cloud’ as we favored my idea of metallophone as the sound of clouds. The cloud is peeking out of the box because we liked Fendi’s interpretation of the sound peeking out of the box as ringing into the void.

The rhythm sticks are directly translated with pairs of bamboo chopsticks intercepting the twisted wiremesh roll.

The banana shaker is represented by shards of blue acrylic because we felt that it sounds like rain. Thus, we hung them in a downward motion as if cutting through the void.

 

Production Process:

To save cost, we mainly used the materials found around the workshop.

1. The frame

We made a frame out of some timber sticks to help suspend our model as sound is travels through space.

2. Cutting wiremesh with difficulty

We chose to use wiremesh because it has a criss-cross texture. When scratched it produces a similar sound to the zig-zaggie block; achieving the acoustic effect that we wanted. We had to soften the wire with the heat gun and cut slowly because there was a problem with the wire cutter.

3. Rolling wiremesh with great effort

The wiremesh was really hard and rolling it took great effort.

4. Twisting the wiremesh roll with the help of the heat gun

So, we used the heat gun to help soften it while we roll.

5. Widening wiremesh hole with soldering iron to make space for chopstick

Since the holes were too small, we had to widen them with the soldering iron to fit the chopsticks.

6. Poking holes into acrylic shards with soldering iron

We soldered holes into the acrylic shards to thread fishing line through them.

7. Putting it together

The top of the wiremesh opens up to look like its ‘fading’ into the void. The fishing line was nearly invisible and it gave the illusion that our model was floating. The wiremesh sat well in between the fishing lines. And we made sure that the acrylic shards were hung in a downwards motion; creating some rhythm at the same time for aesthetic purposes.

8. Rolling out the cotton balls

We used cotton balls as the cloud. Rolling them up, tearing them apart and putting them back together to get that fluffy effect. We also tried to make it fade in and out but somehow we could not get the desired results. The cotton couldn’t stand in place for a faded upward look.

9. fixing on the cloud

Making sure all parts are covered and everything is in place.

 

Other perspectives:

low angle view

 

Here you can see how the wire-mesh rises and builds up to the cloud. You can also see the acrylic shards falling downward as well as the chopstick interrupting the void.

a close up

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Obscure City of Voids – Sketch Models

The Instruments

Our Instruments

 Metallophone (Dominant 7th), Zig zaggie block, Banana shaker, Rhythm sticks

The Music

Composition 1

Dominant: Metallophone

Sub-dominant: Rhythm Sticks

Sub-ordinate: Banana Shaker & Zig Zag Blocks

 

Composition 2

Dominant: Zig zaggie block

Sub-dominant: Banana Shaker, Rhythm Sticks

Sub-ordinate:  Metallophone

The Process

Idea Sketch

I broke down the sound-waves into a ‘chart’ for easier understanding. Because the sounds that we made were too loud, its quite difficult to tell part the instruments from  looking at just the sound-waves. Then I drew a sketch and picked composition 1 because it seems to have more going on than composition 2…

Composition 2 Sketch model

Bent Planes: Dominant (Zig zaggie block)

Fan shaped folds & toothpick: Sub-dominant (Banana Shaker, Rhythm Sticks)

Cotton ball: Sub-ordinate (Metallophone)

Rejected:
Composition 1 (rejected)
composition 1 close up (rejected)

 

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Obscure City of Voids – Some Modular Structure

Nakagin Capsule Tower

Kisho Kurokawa

http://www.kisho.co.jp/page/209.html

“Kurokawa developed the technology to install the capsule units into a concrete core with only 4 high-tension bolts, as well as making the units detachable and replaceable.

The capsule is designed to accommodate the individual as either an apartment or studio space, and by connecting units can also accommodate a family.

Complete with appliances and furniture, from audio system to telephone, the capsule interior is pre-assembled in a factory off-site. The interior is then hoisted by crane and fastened to the concrete core shaft.

The Nakagin Capsule Tower realizes the ideas of metabolism, exchangeability, recycleablity as the prototype of sustainable architecture.”

 


Tara Donovan

Untitled (2014)

https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/tara-donovan-pace-gallery-new-york

Millions Of Pieces: The Sculptures of Tara Donovan

Untitled, 2014, styrene index cards, metal, wood, paint and glue, 12′ 5-1/2″ x 22′ 4″ x 22″ 11-1/2″ (379.7cm x 680.7cm x 699.8cm)

With modular structure, there is lots of repetition going on – a single module repeated all over the entire structure. The repetition can create illusions and impressive effects.

Untitled, 2014 (detail)

“Subtle variations in hue, from white to gray to light blue, give these towers the illusion of depth. Up close, the color and texture resemble a storm-tossed sea, each card’s corners the peaks of waves. From far away, there’s something topographical about the color gradation; the towers could almost be cross sections of a huge, frosted-over canyon. And walking among them, that’s certainly the effect: One feels dwarfed by the sculpture’s sheer height and awed by the incomprehensible labor of arranging each index card by hand.”

Untitled, 2014, acrylic and adhesive, 10′ 1/2″ x 14′ 2″ x 12′ 10-3/4″ (306.1cm x 431.8cm x 393.1cm)
Untitled, 2014 (detail)

“This similarly plays with light and shadow to create a trick of the eye. What look like giant cotton balls are piled high toward the ceiling, and the room’s bright lights make the installation appear wispy, soft to the touch. In reality, the seeming strands of delicate thread are thin acrylic rods that make up a rigid, crystalline structure. Backlit, this magnificent sculpture simply glows.”

Untitled (2008)

http://mymodernmet.com/tara-donovan-styrofoam-cup-sculpture/

Untitled (Styrofoam Cups), 2008, styrofoam cups and glue, installation dimensions variable.
Untitled, 2008 (detail)

“The undulating clouds of synthetic material, spanning twenty feet wide and six feet high, absorb and diffuse the light in beautiful patterns that hang overhead. The Brooklyn-based artist considers each piece to be only a temporary, site-specific construction. When visiting an installation, viewers will find themselves surrounded by a powerful artwork that challenges us to reconsider the basic functions of these everyday materials and to see them in a new light.

 


 

Kusudama

Modular Origami

 

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