Preparing for the Fall 2015 Semester

As I’m beginning this semester there are things I want to delve into things at a deeper level, such as composite photography, digital painting, and video slideshows. I’ve dabbled in these three things throughout my undergraduate program at UW Stout but have not yet pushed the potential of these techniques.

Digital painting has been something I’ve followed since 2009. I’ve experimented with hairbrushes and some digital matte principles for backgrounds but things never really took off the way I’d hoped. My goal is not to make digital paintings, but rather merge elements of digital painting into photographs alongside composites to fill in the holes where things don’t quite line up, similar to this image.

A young woman wearing a sparkly dress inside of a damaged gym
Aftermath from After

Video slideshows come to mind as another important element for showcasing my work and getting the viewer into deeper levels of consciousness. In 2012 I created a Best Of my early photography, which can be viewed below. At the time of making this, I was influenced by a lot of drone music, such as Steven Wilson’s Bass Communion, which is featured in the video below.

The intent here early on was to have something automatic that held attention for more than a few seconds and joined image series together in meaningful ways. I created this Best Of after watching the jarring film Enter the Void, which inspired me more than any film has in a while for its film techniques. That film may not be perfect, but damn the way Gaspar Noe shot it was brilliant.

My first semester at EMU led me to re-create similar shots alongside more gliding shots for the purpose of a soul traveling through space, with no apparent personality. My inspiration came from Enter the Void and the stunning documentary film Samsara.

Of course, Distribution has faults. Mostly I think this because it’s boring to watch. It was meant to be background noise, but that’s not really a defense. However, there are moments I still enjoy throughout this film, especially the aerial and internal environment shots with rails.

Below is an improved gliding I made afterward. I used an SYRP Genie device and another robotic device for a second axis turn, using my Canon 5D Mark II and a Rokinon 14mm lens I used the Magic Lantern camera RAW video hack to have a sharper image with more dynamic range. This scene would have worked well in Distribution. I created this to push the technique, quality, and “ghostliness.”

Almost one year ago exactly I began working with images again and layering techniques. Think of this as composite photography and slideshow combined. I was interested in seeing what my 120+ megapixel image of the Detroit cityscape from the roof of an abandoned building would look like when zoomed in and out.

The film Samsara was still stuck in my head and gave me new levels to reach for. Not having the proper equipment for timelapse and rail movements I improvised and worked with digital zoom techniques. This was shot in Chicago from the 7th floor of the Water Tower place shortly after I made the video above.

Last semester in my Time-Based Media class I created what I think is my most successful timelapse so far called “Sci-Fi Box.” This project was heavily influenced by a more conceptual point of view along the lines of media, thought control, and mass hypnosis.

To continue on… I want to begin addressing future series with more philosophical roots. I want to push these techniques into something more meaningful.

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