TADA! Here’s the first page of our final prototype! Looks awesome right! :D
Even though we had really limited time to finish up everything and to work on more interactivity, I am really proud of my group!! Besides that, we have gotten pretty positive remarks from our ‘play-testing’ sessions! :)
Fortunately our project went on pretty smoothly with little hiccups, just more and more enhancements to bring in depth to the final prototype. We took some photos after our first presentation during tutorial and as mentioned previously, we had pretty good feedbacks as well as constructive comments.
Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the second presentation during our last tutorial but I have heard some really positive feedbacks from my groupmates. Although we need to retake the photographs to be used in our project, Jing likes our scenarios chosen for the project just that we can be even more dramatic.
To add in more ‘layers’ and depth to our project, Jing also suggested to design our project into something like a comic, to give it a fun style of a comic.
I am really thrilled to complete this project! And I think the comic twist will work perfectly on our idea of corporate world. The combination of “fun style of comic” and the “seriousness of corporate world” is ironic and contrasting, which fits in to our idea that corporate world is confusing and complicated.
I really cannot wait to see our final prototype! :D
After many rounds of brainstorming, my group has finally come up with a concept to work on for our final project.
We had several interesting ideas however we were limited by techniques and time constraints, which were really such a pity. Therefore we decided to approach this project in the simplest manner, to keep it concise.
The theme of corporate world is pretty much over-used or cliched, but we are giving it an interesting twist and perspective to this idea. We will be touching on all the stereotypes and phenomenon observed in the office setting. And the twist is that we will lead the audience on by directing them into having a wrong perception of what’s happening and then on closer look (and second thought), the same gesture has a totally different meaning from what they have perceived.
For example, a simple gesture like a pat on the shoulder seems nice and comforting but on second thought (closer look), the same action draws resemblance of someone stabbing his victim on his back.
Besides that, during tutorial discussion, Jing has provided really insightful comments and led us think of more ideas for our project. Initially we were thinking in a narrow-minded direction, just focusing on the negativity of ‘rat race’ and Jing has provided us with a new perspective that the corporate world is not just about the bad happenings; there is always positive side to everything.
After the first presentation of our chosen idea, Jing has also given us inspirations and prompted us to look deeper into the idea of corporate world - the corporate world is confusing and how are we supposed to show this idea in our interactive project?
It was quite a confusion after Jing dropped the bomb about our ‘untitled’ final interactive project for this module.
No one in CNM has done it before and even Jing herself was new to it. However, I am looking forward to this project though there is no previous standards to follow and we have to start everything from scratch.
In preparation to Assignment 3, we had a pretty intensive crash course on Photoshop. Jing had gone through some of the fundamental techniques such as layer mask and smart object.
Personally, I have done a couple of works with Photoshop and Illustrator as I took several design-based modules in the past semester. However Jing’s tutorial came in handy in refreshing my memory.
It is very difficult for me to pinpoint any techniques that are new to me but I have learnt the importance of undestructive photoshop skills, whereby the original picture is not “damaged” and we can easily restore the picture into its original state.
During the tutorial Jing showed us how to select our object accurately using various tools such as brush, pen tool, lasso tool, quick selection tool and etc. Personally, I did similar designs to my assignment 2 where I did a colour isolation to make my ‘apple’ stand out. I had some difficulty in selecting the apple during my edits. So now, I have a better idea on which tool to use.
In Jing’s tutorial, she used a function called the “Smart Radius” but she was using CS 5 and I am using CS 3. But fret not, I did a quick search and found a good way to select hair strands in CS 3! Using the highlight tool under Extract, I can also select the frizzy hair accurately using CS 3. (I have posted this on IVLE forum as well)
I think it is not difficult to understand what the tools and functions can do to our photographs but it is the mapping of your art concepts to how you are going to achieve the effect through the use of tools and whether or not it will give the desired effect is another question.
Back to the days when I was in secondary school, you are considered trendy if you own a handphone. It was a common sight to see students sms-ing under their school desk during lessons and making sure they are not caught by teachers or worse, principal!
Well, technology has advanced and the handphones (that used to function simply just for making calls, sending short messages, making reminders and notes, sometimes even as a portable radio) nowadays are made to stick to you like a personal secretary, a best friend, as diary or even a playmate!
And now, the handphone can be even used as a camera, a pretty decent one. I am not an Iphone user (soon-to-be) but my current LG phone plays quite a satisfying role as a portable camera where I can just point and shoot anytime, anywhere.
Currently, the handphone industry has evolved tremendously and you even have a phone that is SMART! Talking about smartphone, the Iphone is definitely the first that comes into people’s mind. It might not be everyone’s favourite but it is arguably the most impactful one that has revolutionised the whole market.
Whether android advocates love it or not, IPHONES ARE EVERYWHERE!
Iphone users have their iphone everywhere they go, it seems that the phone is undetachable and inseparable in their lives. Iphone has became a necessity and they seem to can’t live without that smart gadget anymore. Iphone has integrated into their lifestyle.
I think it is kind of sad that people are so attached to technology that they forgot to look what’s beyond the tiny screen, they get so self-absorbed in their own world they forgot to communicate face-to-face meaningfully.
Therefore, I decided to touch on this Iphone Phenomenon for my assignment 2. Instead of showing the iphone itself, I have used an apple to represent the phone. The purpose behind the use of apple as it is the brand logo of Iphone. The bitten apple logo is one of the most iconic symbol of all.
From my series of photos, I want to show that people bring their iphone around everywhere, everyday. Without looking at the context of the apple being a representation of an Iphone, audiences might find it ridiculous for someone to bring an apple around - be it sleeping with an apple, bringing apple into the toilet, carrying it around for a jog.
An apple a day, keeps everyone away.
Drop your iphone, don’t get too self-absorbed and forget about how to make meaningful interactions in real-life! :)
I really like Barry Kite’s work because his work tells a rebellious story. Coming from a literary background, Kite, via his compelling titles, seeks to establish a dialogue/tension between his words and images.
Jing shared some thought-provoking issues on aesthetics of photography and it set me thinking for quite a few days.
She asked if we still stand on the notion of taking photos “as it is” in this era where post-processing is so widely available, easy-to-use and capable of enhancing our photos in ways that we did not imagine before.
Well, I believe that it would be best to present the raw form of photographs however, to edit and post-process transcends the idea of mere photo-taking, it grants more room for self-expression and enhancement on the message that a photographer wants to convey. We should not reject the idea of post-process and neither should we abuse the use of technology. A picture should be edited with purpose - to create a certain mood, atmosphere or to communicate a message - not just for the sake of aesthetics.
In short, unedited photographs capture magic of the moment (with great stories behind) while processed photographs evoke certain emotions and feelings. There is definitely no right or wrong in using editing tools.
After a short sharing session, we were given a topic to work with during the tutorial - favourite part of the tutorial! :D
Like Jing said, different people have varied guidelines in judging beauty/aesthetics, I have my own set of expectations too.
I love listening to stories and I usually access (any form of) artworks according to the narratives/meaning behind - that is why all artwork has a short write-up attached to it! When an artwork comes alive when it is bestowed with a meaning. Therefore, I expect an artwork to have a purpose, a message or some form of takeaways - not just pleasing to the eyes.
Here are some of my shots:
Spotted some beer bottles near the Arts canteen so I took a snapshot on it. But it does not seem to fit the topic…
My last attempt when I was on my way back to playroom - the “abandoned” corridor outside of CNM department. The mosaic wall and the unique metal gate are certainly architecture features in the 90s, which makes it pretty special in modern times now.
I decided to give it a consistent 90s feel using sepia filter found in my humble handphone.
After adding a “lomography” filter to the original picture, the processed picture possessed a different mood - with the additional vignette and yellowish tint it somehow seems to be more aesthetically pleasant. Perhaps it is the warmth that the yellow gives to the picture.
Here’s a shot of a lecture class in one of the seminar rooms along AS1. I found the sight interesting as it seems like the students are in a cabin. Well, I guess we all came to NUS to embark on a learning journey with our fellow peers, friends, coursemates, etc… :D
My most satisfied photo for the short exercise though it is not really relevant to the topic. It is intriguing to see distance between the indian workers and the man who is talking on the phone. There is a physical distance and then there is the employer-employee kind of distance between them.
Alright, that aside, here is our chosen piece for the mini competition:
Sugar Daddy! That is the name of this picture, taken by Serene. The photo is blur (unintentional but inevitable) however, the picture is oddly pleasing to the eye. A classic phone photography where hand shake is evident.
The reason why I voted for this picture (among my group and tutorial mates) is the message behind. Seeing Indian worker carrying a bag of white sugar seems expected and not worth any of our (and the bystanders’) attention because it is just a mundane and ordinary job; and a pretty common sight in Singapore. However, people overlooked the fact that the white sugar he delivered is the same sugar used in our food and beverages. We are actually connected to him in a very subtle way, in a very extraordinary way.
Assignment 1 is graded primarily on the technical skills, namely to take photos of Deep Depth of Field, Shallow Depth of Field, Motion Blur and Motion Freeze.
Definitely, as what I expected, it was really easy to fulfill the technical requirements but I really had a difficult time taking photos that I felt confident with. Even up till the tutorial, I was still not happy with the photos I had for the critique sessions. :(
I struggled in composing a satisfactory shot for motion freeze and deep depth of field.
But… I will not stop shooting! I am very sure that I will get the “perfect” photos to be included in my portfolio (and my personal portfolio) at the end of this semester :)
Here are some of my photos for assignment 1… :)
Motion blur: I spun a “disco ball” made of lightsticks and took this picture using my compact camera. I am pretty satisfied with effects, especially with the colours and the fact that the general shape of the “disco ball” is retained in the photo.
Motion Blur: A spinning umbrella. My tutorial mates thought that this photo was rather interesting and commented that it is nicer to have something in contrast with the subject that is blurred. In this case, the rod is sharp while the canopy of the umbrella is blur.
The first idea that struck me is taking pictures of fountains and moving vehicles (which many did) but I really wanted something that required more conceptualisation.
I was inspired by yowayowa’s “effortless jump shots” to compose deliberate shots of motion freeze. I made some attempts to make various objects levitate and had my friend to model for me :)
Winnie is flying! (but kind of obvious that my friend threw it) I hope I can make the levitations more natural.
Winnie taking off in the air!
Looks like magic (card levitation) right?
After experimenting with couple of object levitation I would likely work on a storyboard that involves object levitation for my final submission.
Shallow depth of field: It was easy to fulfill the requirements for shallow depth of field. Personally, I like to use shallow depth of field for narratives as it gives a sense of isolation to a picture where the subject is sharp while everything else is unfocused.
Deep depth of field: The key points to look at for pictures with deep depth of field is the sharpness of the background, middle ground (optional) and background. I shall keep in mind what Jing mentioned - that the sky should not be considered as background.
Going through the photos I experimented (took) for the tutorial critiques, I felt that there is room for tremendous improvements! I will work on the meaning/story behind and in short, keep shooting! :)
It is certainly a pleasure to have Lionel as our guest tutor again.
Unfortunately I was not too prepared for the tutorial - I did not bring my DSLR along! :( But it was interesting experience as I was forced to take photos and explored the camera capabilities of my humble handphone for the tutorial exercise.
Lionel continued to share many useful tips and technicalities about photography and the camera body itself.
And guess what? My handphone can take panning shots!
Geared with our image capturing devices, some of my tutorial mates and I ventured out of classroom and started shooting. It was pretty embarrassing to be pointing and shooting at random passerby in a group. I guess a group of photographers is even more intimidating and we received quite a lot of weird stares.
Here are some of my panning shots using my LG GT505!:
To my astonishment, I was able to capture a successful shot on my first try! :) But I wanted to make the contrast between the background and subject even more obvious so I tried a few more shots.
A really successful panning shot! (Too bad Lionel’s hand came into the frame)
The trick is to really have a pair of steady hands, lock the focus and follow the moving subject. Using mobile cameras to take photographs can be pretty annoying. (I guess everyone’s pretty familiar with this problem) The problem of hand shake is amplified, possibly due to the lag in the camera reaction.
For DSLR and most compact camera in the market nowadays, the shutter/camera reacts almost simultaneously as the photographer releases the shutter. But it was not the case for my handphone. Therefore to compensate that, I had to follow the subject through from the moment I release the shutter till the moment my picture is saved.
There are fail shots too:
Nonetheless, I had lots of takeaways and fun during our first tutorial. Really looking forward to learning more about photography and digital imaging! :D