Posted in 2019-20 posts

The one where I learn 101 things

101 things - page 18

When creating a space, every element of the design should have more than one use. Keeping this in mind can help bring fluidity and let a person visualize themselves within the space more easily. Giving all the elements within the space multiple-meaning can be an effective way to tell a story with design and to guide people through the structure with ease.

Moving forward with my project, I will apply this principle to every element I have within a drawing. If I can not find more than one reason for the element in question to be in the drawing, I will remove it and try to find something that will hold more meaning to be in its place. Less directly, I will try to apply this to each of my portfolio pieces. If I cannot find multiple reasons for why I enjoy the piece, I will remove it from my portfolio or add something to give it more depth and meaning. Lastly, I will take this strategy into account when looking at my project in its entirety and adjust accordingly.

During the process of evaluating every layer of my project, I will help find or give purpose to many of my art pieces which in turn will help bring me confidence regarding my selection and find the pieces that just don’t cut it.

 

101 things - page 24

With any type of visual art, something like the show don’t tell method in writing, is used. Artists have a limited amount of space to tell a story, so the small insignificant things are negated in place of larger more prominent and story driving elements. For example, the light source is assumed because the shading and highlights are what is shown.

While completing my portfolio and answering the application questions I will keep in mind that I should use the viewer’s assumptions to my advantage to give my art more variety and depth. This will also improve my ability to convey a message without explicitly telling the viewer. I can apply this to my art by assuming people will understand the timeline and then focus more on the large, prominent pieces.

Using this lens when choosing what to show and what not to will make my art feel simpler, while still retaining the intended message. My ability to convey a message without shoving it in the viewer’s faces will improve and the overall aesthetic of my art will feel more refreshing.

101 things - page 34

Restricting what is shown can have more of an impact than showing a lot at once. A small glimpse into the world you are trying to build for the viewer is much more meaningful than showing them everything because this lets their imagination fill in the blanks.

While continuing to work on my art pieces I will give the viewer room to wonder and find their own individual meaning within my art. When planning art pieces, I will deliberately show less with more detail instead of showing lots that lose that detail and depth.

This will help bring the viewer in, keep them, and then stay in their mind after they have moved on to a new piece. Additionally, this will improve the overall aesthetic that my art has and make everything feel more cohesive. I will be able to focus on the detail of a small part instead of needing to draw lots without detail.

 

 

Before reading 101 Things I Learned in Architecture School I was quite doubtful that I would find anything of use, but I was happily surprised. I found many more useful tips in addition to the three that I have written about above. If this teaches me one thing it is to not avoid content that doesn’t directly apply to my specific situation.

Posted in 2019-20 posts

The one where I didn’t check all the boxes

For the past two weeks we have been in the Proof of Concept, or POC, stage of Propel. My POC meeting was the morning of September 30th, where it was decided that I should work on my application portfolio for art schools instead of designing my own original character as I had originally planned. During the two weeks we had, I checked almost all my POC boxes. I was tasked with choosing one of the process pieces for the Emily Carr University application, having a list of ten art pieces for my portfolio and lastly, having a completed career canvas.

In the end I didn’t fully complete my career canvas and I wasn’t able to do a final draft of the process piece. As for the list of art for the portfolio, I was able to complete it fairly quickly due to the fact that I already had a draft 0. I had already done one on my own time, so all I had to do was list them from best to worst and take a picture of each. I ended up including three pieces that do not exist yet to show some new skills in my portfolio that I currently do not have or would like to improve on. For the process piece, I chose the prompt “what keeps you up at night” and decided to answer using a 20 second media clip instead of one original image, as specified on the Emily Carr website. I wasn’t able to complete this due to the fact that I was over planning and spending to much time on the drafts instead of moving forward and completing the animation within the given time. This was one of the main things that I learned during the two weeks. I have a tendency to try and perfect everything but end up not completing it because of my fear of failure.

The iterative process was a central theme throughout these past two weeks. The main concept of the Austin’s Butterfly lesson was to continually re-evaluate and adjust based on feedback from peers on whatever it is you happen to be working on at the moment. For my animation I used this technique perhaps too much, I got 7 rounds of feedback on my draft 0 from my classmates which took around two days and then from the teachers as well. By the time I had applied the feedback and had three new draft 1’s I was almost out of time and couldn’t do a third draft. Going forward I will continue to use the iterative process but be more organized when it comes to scheduling my time. There are lots of benefits to having this mindset, but it is also easy to overdo it. If you don’t have a way to schedule when and how you get feedback on your work, you can get trapped in an endless cycle with no way out. It will be very important that I don’t let myself get too caught up in the feedback phase and instead stay on task so I will have a final product in the end.

Posted in 2019-20 posts

The one where feedback is good

Creativity Inc. talks about how we should try to get over our fears of failure so that we can have the best result possible in the end. The main focus of the excerpt we read was based around the creative processes of Monsters Inc. and how much it changed to get to the final product we all love today. The author says that “if you create a fearless culture (or as fearless as human nature will allow), people will be much less hesitant to explore new areas, identifying uncharted pathways and then charging down them”. While the excerpt talks about other things such as creativity, pressure, experimentation, and flexibility the underlying theme throughout is always to not being afraid of failure and instead expect it. The story of Monsters Inc. is well known, Mike and Sully get stuck with boo, a very curious human child and have to get her home before she is discovered. When you read the original plot for the movie it is practically unrecognisable. The creative processes that the film went through is showcased in how drastic the changes are and serve as proof for the feedback loop that all creative endeavors should go through.

After reading the Creativity Inc. excerpt for a second time a year later, I still think that the message of not being afraid of failure is incredibly important, even more so now that I have been through Propel once and have seen how much feedback can help. “the over planners just take longer to be wrong” this phrase resonates with me especially because of how much I relate to the sentiment. I am constantly coming up with new creative things to do and make but my fear of messing up or not being ready enough always gets in the way of doing what I want. Our society is obsessed with planning, before you do anything you need to have a plan. If you want to cook there’s a recipe, if you want to build there are instructions, if you want to play sports there are rules. While planning what you want to do can be good to avoid harming yourself or others, I find that we tend to use planning as a way to avoid confrontation or failure. When being creative we should strive to be less rigged to sticking to one plan and just let are mind do what it was made for, creating.

As an artist it is incredibly hard to get feedback on my work. For most artists what they create for this world is an extension of themselves and a way to express what you are feeling. So, when someone starts pointing out everything that is wrong with your art it often feels like they are pointing out everything that is wrong with you. Ever since last year I have been trying to separate feedback on how I can make my art better from critiques of me. I have also become much more aware of what it is I’m looking for when I show people my art. A couple of years ago I would have asked what someone thought of my art, only hoping to be told how beautiful and amazing it was. Now however when I ask someone what they think of my art I find myself displeased with the praise that feels more and more ingenuine. I have come to expect and want feedback on how I can improve my art.

This does not mean whatsoever that I have gotten the mind set of translating advise into criticisms completely out of my head. I still fish for compliments from time to time and feel hurt when someone point out something I could change, after I have already completed the piece. One thing that has kept me motivated to continue improving was that I found that a compliment means so so so much more when it comes from someone you respect and after you have asked many other people what you could improve about it until you are satisfied with your result. I used to want to be the only one to have any part in what I created and to have a grand reveal at the end for everyone to see. I found however that I was much prouder of the pieces that other people gave input on rather than the ones I did all on my own. I think this is because when I was the only one to have input, if someone didn’t like it, I was taking the full blow and had no one standing with me. This changed when I asked for help because then if again, someone doesn’t like it, I’m not standing alone anymore.

Posted in 2018-19 posts

Curtain Call

My short film is almost complete, I have the majority of the animation done and then I will start the touch-ups. Soon I will be deciding on how I want to organize the credits and what they will look like. I have chosen that the name for my animation, it will be Refraction. I chose Refractions, because when light goes through a crystal and comes out the other side it has turned into a rainbow. Similarly, when the main character walks through the hallway she is going into something and changing and becoming better because of it on the other side.

The finale film with the intro credits added will be around 1 min 30 sec. The majority of the film will be in black and white but there will be some colour at the end to help distinguish between the hallway and the outside world. My goal for this film is to show the unrealistic standers put on teens by society. I hope that at the end of this semester I will have created a film that accomplishes this goal.

I’m will be saying good bye now, but I will be continuing to work on completing my project as soon as possible.

If you would like to see for yourself what I have been doing for a semester you can come to my final presentation night on January 24that Nelson McIntyre Collegiate from 6:30 to 8:30.

For more information about my project you can visit the link below to read my legacy artifact http://www.propellrsd.com/cassandra-animation

Posted in 2018-19 posts

In Over My Head, But Happy

A Gantt chart is something we use at Propel to keep track of the progress we make on our project and if we’re on track to be done by the set times. Gantt charts are basically a project timeline, you have the milestone for your project as the different rows and the action steps that make up the milestones are the way you track how far along you are in each milestone. You set a number of days you will need to complete each goal. If you start to fall behind and aren’t completing the small steps on time, it’s easy to see how much time you need to make up.

For my project timeline, I have 13 milestones, 7 of which are the scenes, the other 6 include the script, the storyboard, the intro and outro, the editing, and the music. I have set a timeframe for each that I think is reasonable for the amount of work. The music overlaps with the other milestones at the beginning because I am working on the music as well as my animation.

Screen Shot 2018-11-29 at 3.12.40 PM.png

At the moment, I’m three days behind in my project. I have only completed one shot in scene 3 which means I have to complete four shots in less time to catch up. I will be working later and at home more often to catch up and stay on track.

In the upcoming weeks, I will be completing scene three and start working on scene four and five. I will have to put in more hours outside of regular school time to make up for falling behind. I will also be deciding on what will be coloured in the mirrors and brainstorm ways to make the message of the project clear to the audience. Finally, I will start looking for music online to accompany my animation.

Posted in 2018-19 posts

Well On My Way

My short film has gone through many iterations, things have been added and taken out but now I have finally landed on my final version. My original idea was to have a two to three minute animation but this would have been impossible due to the limited time and skills that I have. We shortened the film to one minute so I have a much better chance of finishing it. The story has changed as well, I was going to have words on each mirror but after getting feedback from multiple people I have moved the words to the last mirror. I have also changed the ending to better conclude my story as well as to not take away from the story’s message.

The key phases for my project include writing a script, storyboarding, the music, the different major animation elements, (example: the hallway and the mirror animations) and finally combining all of the animations and the soundtrack together.

Because my story doesn’t include any dialogue, my script was a description of how each scene would play out and what it would look like. Storyboarding is basically just translating the script into images. You draw out a very rough sketch of what you want the scene to look like. This is done so if you have to change something you won’t be scrapping hours of work. When finding music to go with your story, you should have a basic understanding of what emotions you want to evoke in the audience. I have separated my animation process into 2 different groups that are unique to my story. After everything is done, I will be combining all of these components together to produce the short film.

Time is slowly ticking away, so I have jumped right into my project. In the upcoming weeks I will be focusing on animating the short film. I have finished my script and storyboard so I’m going right into the animating. Hopefully I will also be able to collaborate with someone from Propel for the soundtrack but if not, I will be looking online. I’m very excited to continue working on my project but especially excited to start animating again, because writing a script and storyboarding doesn’t typically include animating.

Posted in 2018-19 posts

Breaking Protocol

The past month and a half, time has just been flying by. When October started, so did our POC. I jumped right in and started learning how to use a drawing tablet, which proved to be harder than I had expected. As I was learning to use the tablet, I was also learning how to use Adobe Animate. Even though I was going into this practically blind, I managed to come out the other side with three finished projects. First, I created a 7 second animation of a stick figure leaning against a brick wall kicking his leg and nodding his head as he whistled, then someone popped up and scared him. This animation was fully colored and had the clouds in the background moving.  Second, I animated a sand bag and gave it personality. I decided to make this look silly and loose, I didn’t stress too much about it looking perfect and I had fun with the animation. Finally, I created a stop motion scene with Legos that depicted two astronauts on the moon.

Before I came to Propel, I knew that I wanted anything that I made to have meaning and to benefit the world in some way. I spent the summer brainstorming ideas for what I wanted to do. I ended up deciding on a story about a teenage girl who walks through a room of mirrors where in each one she sees a different version of herself. The last mirror she looks in doesn’t show a pretend version of herself, its reflection is who she really is, imperfections and all. With my film, I want to bring up a topic that is commonly used as a joke in teen movies. We regularly put ourselves into boxes, Jock, Nerd, Shy kid, Class Clown. People are so much more complex than the labels we give to others and ourselves. If my short film gets a positive response out of at least one person, I will be happy with what I have made.

Never stop questioning the norms and breaking away from them.