Although well underway, it’s time for me to start writing publicly about my thesis process, both project and paper. It has undergone many changes since my original proposal last year, though the themes and participant group remains the same.
Working title: Of Self and Home: Portraits of Queer Youth
Format: HD video installation
Project website: http://www.hexa.net/selfhome/
Summary: Of Self and Home is an experimental documentary artwork created with queer youth who have experienced homelessness, which combines painting with video and personal narrative.
Process: Using a custom-built, portable apparatus that holds a piece of clear Plexiglas, each person paints a self-portrait, which is video recorded from the other side. Free to interpret ‘self-portrait’ however s/he wishes, each participant gets one sheet of Plexiglas and, using acrylic paints (with added retardant to slow drying), can make several paintings, washing them off in between, until satisfied with one. All ‘takes’ will be recorded using a Panasonic HVX 200 video camera.
Informal interviews are conducted with each person, during which we discuss what it means to be young, queer and struggling to live in Toronto. These sessions will be recorded (audio only) and edited with the participant’s painting video for the exhibition. Participants are encouraged to contribute other audio, if desired, such as an original song, poem, or musical performance.
Portraits and audio will be collected and composed into a multi-channel video installation (with a possible interactive component if it enhances the work) that will be exhibited in a Toronto art gallery June 2009. Participants will be able to keep their final painting after the exhibition.
Tuesday 18 November 2008 10:24AM
During my presentation, as I talked about photos from elsewhere in my ‘mikosian’ Flickr account leaking into the pool of 100 images, which I said could be remedied by removing tags from all other photos, the prof pointed out that I could have made a separate account that contained only those images. True enough, if I’d known where I was going to end up. When I first uploaded the 100 images to my Flickr account I had done so merely to take advantage of existing organizing tools and hadn’t thought they would remain there for their final archive/database form. It wasn’t until later that I found TagGraph, which does more or less what I’d envisioned for the final representational form and does it through the Flickr API.
But I’ve been thinking about this and today I created a new Yahoo/Flickr account ‘hundredimages’ (they wouldn’t let me begin a user name with a number) and the DM8305 100 images are uploading as I write. However, I can create a screen name and an easier-to-remember (and type) URL alias that starts with a number: http://www.flickr.com/photos/100images/
Of course, this means applying all those tags again…
11:25AM – IMPORTANT NOTE: TagGraph pulls information based on the Flickr *screen name*, not the user name or alias, which I found out when both ‘hundredimages’ and ‘100images’ returned a “(user not found!)” message. Just FYI.
Friday 14 November 2008 1:23PM
Yesterday’s class consisted of the first round of 100 Images project presentations and on the roster were:
Mark Laurie, Ryan Gauvin, Tori Foster, Lyndall Musselman, Kate Schneider, Erin Clarke (me), Joanne Loton, and Mark Tollefson (in that order – I may edit later to add notes about each).
For posterity, here are (links to) a screen shot of what my 100 Images final form looks like along with my 100 Images presentation notes, a list of 100 Images-related URLs and the list of categories I’ve been using (in PDF).
Wednesday 12 November 2008 11:47PM
Whew! Because I can’t rely on Internet access for my presentation I just spent the last couple hours retracing my process of finding the TagGraph software and making numerous (70!) screen shots, 46 of which are within TagGraph’s navigation of my ‘100 Images’ on Flickr. Of course, the screen shot process results in a lot of images named ‘Picture 1.png’, ‘Picture 2.png’, ‘Picture 3.png’, etc. so I found myself absorbed in a sub-archival endeavour naming and organizing these images meaningfully.
Now I just have to summarize key points of my process thus far and squeeze it all into a presentation that will only take ten minutes.
Edit (2008/11/13 1:45AM): Oops, make that ‘Plus 104’ – I forgot to grab images from the Taglines app, which was the first Flickr image tag visualization example I came across. I made (and cropped) 34 screen shots to give an impression of its (non-interactive) time-line format. I’m probably doing way more than I need to but I want a lot of visuals. I have also been making point-form notes of the various stages I have gone through in this process so far.
Sunday 9 November 2008 10:11PM
After taking a break to stretch my legs, get some fresh air, eat dinner and spend a couple hours on another assignment (for Sound Design class), I returned to my not-yet-ended tagging process, deciding to approach it from another angle, namely my Flickr tag cloud. Immediately I noticed another inconsistency, ‘adult’ and ‘adults’ tags, which made me a little concerned about the various meanings of ‘adult’, especially applied to images. Good thing it is easy to call up all the images tagged thusly so that the singular ‘adult’ tags can be edited to the originally-intended ‘adults’. However, the changes were not saved. I tried twice. Perhaps I need to delete the ‘adult’ tags and add new ‘adults’ tags.
Actually, I think it did save changes and I was looking at cached info. I also found a better way to change a tag than editing it in each individual image. When you click on a tag from the tag cloud, on the page that comes up is a ‘Change this tag?’ link where you can edit the tag and have the change applied to all photos with that tag.
Unfortunately, there doesn’t appear to be a way to isolate tags for just the ‘100 Images’ set (i.e. have a tag cloud just for one set), at least not that I’ve discovered. The ‘NYC’, ‘Brooklyn’ and ‘Manhattan’ tags do not apply to any of the ‘100 Images’ photos (well, except the WTC images that I tagged with ‘NYC’). Fortunately I have been a neglectful tagger in Flickr up until recently, so most of the tags are ‘100 Images’ tags. It’s also a good thing I have a two-digit number of tags, since the cloud only displays the most used 150.
There is, however, a way to select photos by multiple tags in the multi-tag search. More usefulness!
Oh, and I forgot to mention that Flickr has its own date-arranged archive view of one’s photos.