Month: September 2018

BCM320 Blog Post 4

So in the last post for BCM320 I detailed my experience in the subject Digital Asia from an auto-ethnographic approach. To summarise that post I detailed my upbringings as a Filipino Australian and the the cultures and texts I was exposed to as a kid. I believed I was well diversified due to the range of cultures of the people I was friends with, and of my own.

I realised by the time I wrote the last blog post that I had only touched the surface of intercultural experiences. This subject has really opened my eyes and my mind to different cultures.

Personally to me, what draws me to immersing in these cultures is the sense of familiarity and unfamiliarity. During the semester, with every film/video we viewed, first I cling to the elements which are familiar, and this is what produces “epiphanies” (remembered moments perceived to have significantly impacted the trajectory of a person’s life (BOCHNER & ELLIS, 1992; COUSER, 1997; DENZIN, 1989). This is how we process what we are seeing. How we understand what we see in our minds using our own personal experiences.

Then I get drawn to what’s unfamiliar. Or similar way but a tad different… The familiarity within the unfamiliar. The things my mind perceives as familiar within things I find strange, odd, weird, unnatural etc etc. This also triggers epiphanies but in a different way. The mind trying to make sense of something that doesn’t make sense always creates a unique understanding of what is seen. One example of finding familiarity within the unfamiliar was in State of Play.

It followed the lives of professional gamers in Japan. I find video games familiar and I find the competitive mindset commonly found in sport familiar. I used to play video games all the time as a kid, and I’ve watched a range of different sports in my life, now mostly MMA and Boxing. When I watch MMA and Boxing fights and the documentaries behind them I see their competitive mindset. The will to put their lives on the line to win. It’s what I feel is a unique mindset. I myself have been boxing on and off for the past year, haven’t competed yet, though through fighting sparring partners during training, I am aware of the mindset fighters must have.

Now through watching State of Play, I saw this same mindset of risking everything just to win, but instead with Japanese pro gamers. I am aware of the existence of pro gaming, but not to the extent of the one seen in State of Play. I usually envision kids in a quiet room full of heaps of screens when I think of a live pro gaming event. But in State of Play it was like a concert, and the gamers were rockstars. There were massive crowds screaming, and a huge production. The gamers that the film follows themselves were what I found the most strange as they took it so seriously. They sacrificed many things just to excel in this. It’s as if their lives depended on it. Compare these two videos.

 

 

Both COMPLETELY different professions. But you can see the same mindset in both the gamers and this professional fighter.

This has led me to gain interest in the Behaviour and Attitudes aspect of Auto Ethnographic studies. In the Ellis Et Al reading this kind of study reflects the form of  reflexive auto ethnography.

Digital Artefact

Now for the digital artefact for this subject, me and 2 other students will be delving into the K-Pop Fandom wars. We were planning on doing a reaction video to these fans going crazy for their favourite artists. Because we want this to be authentic in reaction, I will not look into anything related to it until after we react to the video

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MEDA302 Week 8 Blog Post

 

So I did this quick test footage where I used the visuals from the video that influenced my idea, and I did cheap sound effects with ONLY whatever was on my desk. I tried to find the balance between ‘actually trying’ and ‘Barely trying’ just to test the waters with how I can execute these sounds. So that mindset is to get sounds that are ‘Close enough’ and ‘Barely close’ to the actual sound. Here I used a tin with random stuff in my desk, sticky notes, a stanley knife, a packet of tissues and my voice.

Feedback

After making the video and showed the class. They actually said the sounds themselves were actually well done. To the point where if it didn’t have me on the split screen doing it, they would’ve barely noticed. The feedback I got was to do more sounds using my voice as the sound itself and using my voice to create them is humorous enough as an idea, and only gets funnier with execution. I was also given recommendations with text to watch by Tati, who I’ve already checked out

One thing I want to incorporate is a two screen installation where the movie is on the left screen, and me doing the foley is on the screen to the right. The class did like that recommendation as opposed to the split screen that I would do which still works, however a two screen installation would work better.

All in all with the amount of effort I put in, I was pretty happy with how it turned out. For the upcoming footage I’m going to use Adobe Premiere rather than iMovie, and I’m gonna explore different approaches to making sound designs. Such examples of different approaches is “Trying too hard”, “Off time sound”, “Foley work but in a hurry” and more. At the final project I want to have a mix up of a variety of executed sounds.

MEDA302 Week 7 Blog Post

So the end plan for this week is to establish a final idea for the project, or at least grounded enough for me to visualise how a final edit would look like. So last week after viewing some Jacques Tati work, I decided I did want to include the same visual humour he did, though it might contradict the scenic approach I wanted to take. I was thinking at first, it’d have to be one or another. A serious approach with visuals and imagery that would be complemented by terrible foley, or a more humorous visual approach complemented by exaggerated and terrible foley.

I decided to go for a balance between both. The visuals would be scenic, but also the things that would happen would also convey visual comedy (But very very little). I want the forefront of the humour to be the sound.

So for the visuals….

The footage and story that I would be doing foley for will simply be a man (Played by my mate) going from location A to location B, but in a hurry, and comes across some obstacles. Though that doesn’t sound much in terms of “Finalising my idea”, that’s already provided to me a plan. I know my actor, I know the vibe I’m going for, that’s honestly enough for me for this week. The actor I’m using Mitch is also a very humorous person who has the same humour as me, so even he comes up with great ideas on the spot that complement my project.

Here is past work I’ve done with Mitchell:

 

The only thing I knew coming into this was:

  • One minute video
  • Raising awareness for spontaneous injuries

Not the greatest video obviously, however the mark was pretty good from what I remember and I filmed/edited/planned this in a span of 2 days.

This final project for MEDA302 I still have nearly 2 months to finish. I’ll be sweet!

MEDA302 Blog Post Week 6

So this week is the first week of working towards the final project. This week all I’m going to do is to establish a time schedule to work in. I’m a self aware person, so things I know about myself:

  • It takes me a few weeks to get into a rhythm
  • I don’t stick to time schedules that go past 5 weeks, but if I focus on small portions at a time, I’m more likely to stick to it
  • I like to spread out workload rather than do a lot at once or in consecutive weeks
  • I get stressed easily

In listing those things about me, I created this time schedule

Week 6- Establish plan for next few weeks, Find more influence, more ideas
Week 7- Finalise Idea- Start working- Test footage
Week 8- Critical reflection of test footage- Further research
Week 9- Make a start on final video- Plan out what to do week 10-13

At this point, I still am stuck with the specifics of the project. All I still know is that it’s a 3-5 minute film showcasing the art form of Foley in a parodied way. However the specific visuals themselves are what I am unsure with. Do I want to tell a story with the visuals that I will be creating foley for? or should I focus on more scenery and specific actions which I will be creating a range of sounds for?

I’ve decided I will do a bit of all of that. Tell a story, nothing complex, something as simple as someone getting from one place to another with obstacles. And in the process, there would be scenery and specific movements which would give me heaps of work to do foley sounds in.

A suggestion for an artist to check out is Jacques Tati so I watched this video

 

What I observed was the visual and sound comedy that is in this film. The sounds are exaggerated and the visuals are over the top. I understood within the first minute why this was suggested to me. What I find funny in this are the same ways I want mine to be funny. I feel the visuals are something I can incorporate, just the absurdity of what’s happening, though I still want it to be scenic. The sound effects is very exaggerated but not to the point where it’s out of reality completely, it’s still somewhat grounded, yet comic enough.

MEDA302 Blog Post Week 5

So continue on from last week’s blog, I have come up with my idea for my final project, being a 3-5 minute film which is a parody of foley videos which you see on YouTube. The idea is to exploit the stereotypes and making fun of the “Master of their craft” like videos you would see online. In doing this, I need to critically analyse the works that would influence my project.

The first work I’m going to critically analyse is this video. I’m a big fan of the video as I’ve actually watched it many times for leisure. I find the visuals which the foley artists are creating sound effects for really breathtaking in itself as it’s set in a quiet and small fishing town. The shot selection and camera angles were great as it establishes the focus point for where the sound effects come into play. I really liked how the video would switch back and forth between the studio with the foley artists and the film they were working on, especially as you would see their professionalism in the ways they would get their timing right, and the perfect and accurate execution of their craft. On top of this, the soundtrack of the video really further established a serious tone, which all the more, adds to the professionalism. What this video does best is bring attention to this art form, to really show their mastery and what goes on behind the scenes. That is an aspect I’ll be looking to emulate in my own project.

So this second video is a straight out humorous parody on Foley work which I found hilarious. The guys in it just have a list, and seemingly would just go for whatever suffices. Obviously the camera work and style of this video, technically speaking, doesn’t touch the first video I showed, it’s mainly the narrative that makes this just as  entertaining. The equipment they use and their careless attitude of their work contributes to a more funnier approach than the serious craft mastery of the previous video. The ideas I’d take from this video is using the funny equipment like they do, and execute the sounds in a similar manner timing wise as they do, but I’d remain serious in execution much like the first video.

MEDA302 Blog Post Week 4

My primary practice in creating works is sound, mostly music, but pretty much anything that’s sound, like sound effects, soundscapes and all that. And the other is filming, which I haven’t used too much of in this subject. But for this final project I wanted to incorporate both. I knew I wanted to do a sound based piece which is complemented by visuals. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, whether music based, but the initial idea was to create some form of sound work that was supported by visuals. I tossed up doing a music video, and a soundscape, but after getting feedback, I realised that wasn’t really the way to go

Last week while I was making my late night rounds through YouTube I came across this video

 

After watching this video, I realised, I wanted to do something just like this for my final project, but how could I make it unique or conceptualise it? How could I add flavour to this format? Well, those questions are what led me to my idea:

The idea is a video just like the one I just showed. The film will roughly go for 3-4 minutes, I’m not sure what the exact vision I have of the film is just yet as far as visuals go. But it will Include behind the scenes footage of me doing foley work, which I might show through a second screen maybe, just so it doesn’t jump back and forth between me doing the foley and the visuals that are shown.

So what’s the catch? the foley work itself would be comically bad. Now I’m still unsure how to approach this, whether I want the sounds itself to be terrible to the point where the sound is off time, or having them barely resemble the sounds it’s meant to make, or maybe have the sounds only just believable enough so that it gets a pass, or to actually have the sounds be made well, but the items I’m shown using to to create them are just far fetched to the point where it’s ridiculous. So yeah the humorous aspect I’m still deciding where to go, but no matter what, the seriousness of the video will remain the same. It’ll be made with the same enthusiasm and professionalism as the video I showed.

I believe the genre for a video of this type would fall under “parody video”. A parody video is an imitation of the style of a particular writer, artist, or genre with deliberate exaggeration for comic effect. Such movie examples are Austin Powers, Scary Movie and Shaun of the dead. In an article called Bitter Laughter, the writer touches on how parody can be used to politically influence the audience. Though my final project has no political message at all, the concepts brought forward in this article will allow me to understand the approach to take in making this video.
“Within previous work on Parody, Holman and Harmon (1986) define it as an imitation intended to ridicule or criticize, that to be understood requires familiarity with the original object, and to be effective must sound faithful to the original.” I really admire the work these foley artists do, so I wouldn’t say I’d be ridiculing the work with intent to discredit these artists, but definitely in a sense of taking a little jab at the whole “Masters of their craft behind the scenes” styled videos. My project also wouldn’t really be downfully criticizing the work of these artists, but more exploiting the stereotypes of the video, such as the dramatic music and the seriousness of the artists. Throughout the article, the writer repeats that the primary intention of parody videos is to  “Amuse the audience”, which really sums up the intent of my project