Polyvocal Mixtape: Atlanta


On Sept 25 – 27th I traveled to Atlanta, GA to continue my year long project under the working title Polyvocal Mixtape. In Atlanta I conducted a series of interviews of four Black students of Emory University at the Law University Library. While I have called this an interview it is rather a roundtable discussion where all four people are interviewed at once. This ongoing discussion in this interview is asking the question what does Blackness mean in this current culture? As we delve into their stories we see the many layers of Blackness and the varying narratives and experiences unique to each individual. The images as part of this documentation are some of the people I interviewed.      

Polyvocal Mixtape: Painting


If for whatever reason you have kept up with my research entries on the Create Space website then you understand or at least know what I am engaging with. This is no different. For this part of the Polyvocal Mixtape Series (a title constantly changing but I think I’ve settled more or less) I am painting two people from a series of interviews I conducted exploring the contemporary context of Blackness. This interview took place summer of this year however I have not begun painting until two weeks ago. With the item I checked out at the Create Space, the projector, I projected my image onto a 70 x 70 in stretched canvas. The first image attached to this documentation is the drawing and the second is the first layer of paint I place onto the canvas after the drawing has been completed. This process is the most time efficient way I have developed thus far to create my paintings. Include the five W’s: Who, What, When, Where, & Why. You can enhance your message by including links and/or embeds of your research into this box from Youtube, Vimeo, Soundcloud, Facebook, or Twitter. Put any of these on their own line, with a space above & below. Note: Your submission will be reviewed for posterity’s sake, and if found insufficient, may have an impact on future resource access.    ...

Projections Design for Elbows Off the Table


The projections design for Ohio University Division of Theatre’s production Elbows off the Table (written/directed by Rebecca VerNooy) was an interesting challenge. The play is set up as a movement/devised style of piece, which meant that the projections had to follow the story in a different way. Where the projections were going was often more important than specifically what the projections were displaying. For example, this design often involved displaying moving color on the actors themselves while at the same time keeping the projection off any visible surface on the set—in essence, dynamic color toning of the actors themselves without interacting with the set. In other scenes, what was projecting on the stage floor was equally important to the defined images on the back wall. This is where the Create Space equipment came in handy. I needed two smaller projectors in addition to the division’s inventory to add geometric disco patterning to the floor to complement the “rave scene” video graphic animations on the back wall and on the actors. These projectors were rigged directly above the stage and pointed directly down at the floor. This angle also had the advantage of having minimal interaction with the actors while maintaining full coverage of the floor. Another resource utilized from the Create Space was a hd videocamera and the blue room which was used to capture the individual “faces in blackness” used during the show. The content for this show was generated mostly in Adobe After Effects and Photoshop. The projection output control and surface mapping was handled with Dataton’s WatchOut media server platform.    ...

The Hunted


Gender issues have always perplexed me. How what I was permitted or not permitted to do differed from my male peers frustrated me greatly while growing up. Then seeing that divide spread as an adult woman caused me to seek out an explanation, but the rational I was being given I found to be greatly unsatisfying. For years I tried to subvert the system and escape my female limitations in work and social structures, but that produced little result and threatened to alienate me in my various networks. Finally I stubbled upon what I was looking for in feminist literature. It validated my frustrations, help define what I was experiencing and gave me strategy for moving forward. So in my first film at the MFA program at Ohio University, I wanted to tell a story that symbolizes the horrific punishment that females face for deviating from expectations, and sometimes not even for deviating, the punishment females sometimes face for just existing. The Hunted is a short film that starts with the classic horror scenario of “killer chasing helpless female in the woods”, but by the end we find out that the female maybe wasn’t so helpless after all. By subverting the classic memes of the genre so dramatically in my first film at OU I feel I’m setting the groundwork for a reinterpretation of other genres, this time making the female in charge of her own voice and storytelling. We’re shooting on a Arri-S 16mm camera and hope to have the project completed before the end of 2015. Thank you.          ...

Moon Tunnel Installation #1


Sept 25th marked the first installation of Moon Tunnel, a new graduate-run literary series sponsored by the Ohio University English Department. The series was founded in fall of 2015 to foster community and to provide a low stakes environment for recognized graduate writers to practice sharing their creative work aloud. Readings are limited to 10 minutes, and are prefaced by a 1 minute unprofessional introduction. The first installation was held at 7:30pm in the basement of ArtsWest and featured Kirk Wisland (pictured in photo), Madeline ffitch and Claire Eder. Moon Tunnel events will be held throughout the year. The next event will take place on Friday, October 23rd. Additional installations are scheduled for Nov. 6th, and Feb 5th, with a final showcase of graduating PhDs in Creative Writing planned for March 25th.      

Dogwood Bloom Nest Reading


On Friday September 18th I delivered a multimedia literary reading of a lyric, visual essay entitled “Nest.” The text of the essay I read was contained in a set of ten parentheses–a nested essay, if you will. During the reading I used a large set of Russian nesting dolls to demonstrate the motion of associative moves that the reader was asked to consider while listening to each of ten sections in succession. The reading was held at Galbraith chapel and facilitate by the use of a microphone, combination amp and speaker, and the use of a music stand.      

Advanced Cinema Camera Demonstration


As a TA of MDIA 4904: Lighting for Film and Video, I was asked by Professor Brian Plow to put a lecture together on cameras. In this class, we teach students the ins and outs of lighting a scene – how to use lighting not only technically but as an emotional tool. While a large part of our job is to set up lighting situations, we also need to understand how that light is being recorded and what is happening to it. That’s why it is imperative for us to understand cameras in a very in-depth sense. The class gathered in RTV’s Studio C, where I asked the students to set up a portrait situation with three lights and one subject sitting in a chair. In front of them sat 3 different cameras: a Canon Rebel t3i, a Blackmagic Cinema Camera and a Blackmagic Pocket Camera. Most students shoot on a Canon t* series DSLR. They’re affordable, extremely versatile and a good investment for people of our age group. However, with the rise in popularity of the DSLR, I thought it was necessary to explain, in technical terms, what makes it and a cinema camera different. 1. A cinema camera won’t produce pretty colors in-camera, you have to make that happen later. You typically don’t want the camera to film a saturated, heavily colored image. The images that the Blackmagic series cameras record are very flat – that is, they appear gray. There aren’t many whites or blacks, and color is very desaturated. The purpose behind this is to allow you to grade it later. Grading is the process of coloring an image in post production. 2. Understand what ISO, aperture and shutter speed really are. When dealing with cameras, these three things affect the brightness of your image. We’re taught, as media students, how to use these to expose an image that isn’t too bright or too dark, but not where they came from or what they are truly doing. I told the students tidbits of information about each: ISO: This is how sensitive the camera is to light. When you increase the ISO, you are making it more sensitive, and you are going to make the image more noisy. Some cameras work best at a certain ISO, the BMCC, for example, has a “native” ISO of 800, whereas a Sony FS7 is closer to 3200. Also, ISO used to be called ASA in the days of film. Aperture: (Iris) This is determined by your lens, and, in my opinion, every lens has a personality all it’s own. When you see a blurred background in a film, it was probably shot at a low f/stop. The shape of this blurriness, called “bokeh”, is determined by how many blades there are in the aperture of the lens. Shutter speed: Formally known as the shutter angle in film cameras, this determines how many times per second an image is sampled. A shutter speed of 1/60th means you are taking 60 samples every second. This determines how blurry movement is within your frame. I also explained to the class how the old “shutter angle” mechanism worked in older cameras. (Note: This is not the frames per second the camera is recording at) 3. Know your camera. Like a lens, a camera is not easily quantified by the sum of it’s parts. You can look at each specification – the sensor size, the output format – all the technical things – but at the end of the day, each camera will produce an image of a different caliber and flavor. During our class time, I used the two Zeiss lenses from Create Space to demonstrate how they are better than a standard DSLR lens. They are sharper and sturdier than DSLR lenses, and have a much nicer focus ring for pulling focus. We also looked at lenses from Canon, Rokinon, Lens Baby and a few vintage ones. Additionally, I took out a small camera called a Lytro. This was used to demonstrate that there are many weird, different sorts of cameras on the market, to get them thinking about a world outside of DSLRs. The Lytro is a special camera, as it takes a picture whose focus can be changed later. Normally, a picture taken with a regular camera has the focus “baked in” – it is permanently set at the time of creation. The students really enjoyed taking pictures with it and thought it was a great little novelty. To finish our class, we took out the BMCC equipped with a Rokinon 50mm lens as well as the Canon t3i equipped with the Zeiss 50mm. The students used both cameras to film the same subjects on College Green, so that we can compare the footage in later classes. The class enjoyed being able to try out new and different equipment, and hopefully left thinking about how they can change up their next project by choosing a different camera or lens. These are things I wish professors would have taught me early on, so I wanted to pass on what I have learned in my studies as a cinematography student.    ...

Banned Book Project


Banned Books Week is an annual celebration of books that have been banned from libraries in the US. This year the focus is on young adult books. For this project, I chose “To Kill A Mockingbird” from the list of banned books and recreated a cover image for it. The idea behind the image is both literal and abstract. In the book, Dolphus Raymond is known as the town drunk, but in reality he’s only drinking coke from the brown paper bag. The idea that things aren’t always as they seem is a reoccurring theme throughout the book so i felt like it was the perfect image to convey that message.      

Stage 2 WIP: Individuals

By Megan Fogelson

In my Art 1230 Structure class our professor had each of us create something that showcases our talent in the first stage. Then for the second stage we switched projects and added to it or based our work on one or more aspect(s) to make it our own. For the second stage I received Brianna Lynch’s photos of costume makeup. I based my pieces after hers in the sense that I did makeup as well but used more symbolism to make it my own with dramatic black and white makeup on my models faces. Then I captured it with a Canon 5D 12.8 Megapixel camera. I used photoshop to adjust the lighting/contrast and make the photos black and white. I wanted to convey the message that people are individuals. The first model has a QR code drawn on her face. I wanted to emphasize that a person is more than a series of numbers. The second model has plastic surgery markings drawn on her face. I wanted to represent that a person is more than their appearance. Last but not least the third model has a barcode drawn on her face. I wanted to convey that a person’s value is priceless. People are individuals that shouldn’t be generalized.      ...

Dear Mr. Essay Writer Guy


This projector and adaptor helped to facilitate an interactive reading featuring author Dinty W. Moore reading from his book “ Dear Mr. Essay Writer Guy, Advice and Confession on Writing, Love, and the coming polar bear apocalypse,” which features pen illustrations drawn on serving napkins. At the event, held at Casa Nueva at 6pm on Sept 10th 2015, audience members were invited to participate and comment by drawing images interpreting the reading on serving napkins. These interpretations were then projected on a wall. Sarah Minor coordinated the event and took photos of the interpretations that were projected and then voted on, and each interpretation was given a literary award in the form of a book or polar-bear related object. This interactive reading was held to encourage a literary community in Athens, to push the genre conventions of what a literary event and reading might look like, and to promote the work of Dinty W. Moore.    ...

ACRN DJ Lessons


In the past few years ACRN (The All Campus Radio Network) has noticed a significant rise in “DJ culture” and, consequently, a rise in students wanting to learn how to DJ, but simply not having the resources at hand. To attend to his need the Mobile DJ arm of ACRN decided to introduce a new weekly event: DJ Sessions. Every Monday at 7, ACRN hosts DJ sessions where DJ’s, new and experienced, from all over Athens can come learn more about the craft and network with other DJ’s. Partnering with Create_Space, ACRN brought in 20 students with varying experience to work on and discuss the fundamentals of DJing. Moving from basic beat matching to live sound troubleshooting, students learned the core skill sets of being a great DJ and were able to work with top tier DJ software used by the professionals. It is extremely important that you provide an abstract of your creative research explaining to others what it is they are viewing, including what your research is, why you are doing it, and how, i.e. the process.    ...

Water Witch music video


Using the GoPro Hero 3, Velbon Tripod, Davis & Stanford Steady Stick, Lumix 14-140 Lens, and Blackmagic Pocket Camera, I am filming a music video to the song ‘White Noise’ by the band Water Witches. The video is the story of how the cult Water Witches was born, starting with the band hatching out of mystical eggs. We begin with a witch in the woods casting a spell. Her spell beckons avian goddess’s, who dance around two giant eggs to psychically hatch them. There, the band hatches from the eggs cover in ectoplasmic goo and yolk. After being cleaned by the avian goddess’s the band begins their spiritual journey into the woods where they gain a cult following. They hypnotize a group of white robe wearing freaks, with their melodic tunes and intense visuals. Below is a few pictures of the beginning of the giant egg, costume ideas, and visual inspiration.    ...

Seeing is not seen


My thesis is an approach of spiritedness rely on visual assessments and physical exploration. It relates to culture, focus on specific object-Tea. I was fascinated by Fluxus movement for blending different artistic media and anti-commercial aesthetics. So in this point stimulated me to think how valuable I can take from random processing and deal with detail capture, In my point of view, a unique stop-motion animation piece that analyses common objects around us and gives us a look at the construction of things to which we normally give little attention.        

Work in Progress


For my project I had to make something that described my talent. The project could be anything. My Professor wanted the project to be up to your interpretation. With that information in mind I thought if I could combine my photography skills with someone else’s it would be a stronger project. I have worked with a fellow student whose talent was costume makeup, with this we were able to pair up with my talent being photography. We picked two models that agreed to have makeup be put on and to be photographed. With this we were able to combine our skills for our project. Both of us thought working together with both of our talents would be stronger than if we were alone.    

Total Limbo


Collective Springboard (Danny Crump, Sarah Dalhinger, Micah Snyder, and Steph Wadman) bounce back from their day jobs as serious artists. They do so by creating collaborative and improvisational art, with a sharp eye for rando stuff salvaged from the appalachian landscape. In a full scale transformation of the Dairy Barn Art Center, Total Limbo imagines a space between worlds. Participants are immersed in audio, visual and physical dreamscape, including a modernist gridlock maze, a soft environment, a spaceship, and a strobe light fueled infinity room. Alongside the installation was a triple channel video projection, a shifting audio soundscape, and interactive sculptures such as a human slingshot, and a teepee made from plastic shopping bags. Participants choose their own path, level of engagement, and are encouraged to connect with their own liminal space of discovery. In the spirit of ephemeral art, everyone must leave Total Limbo and return to their regular life on earth.      ...

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