Thursday, January 21, 2010

Weekly Post January 21, 2010

This week, a significant amount of time was spent in all aspects of my project:  designing, editing, recording, writing, reaching out.

I finished the entire collaborative series with Jay (4 hours), which consists of about 35 pictures from the disposable camera.  The other 10 images didn’t come out as well due to poor lighting and the overall quality of a disposable camera.  But in general, I think the series is nice, as it tells a unique story of Jay’s day-to-day life, filled with his ironic captions.  The snow pictures are my favorite, as they truly capture the very sad living circumstances in such cold weather. 

Stephanie suggested I clear out my studio wall and post all of the images to see how they look as a series, which was interesting and it allowed me to take a step back.  Hannah also suggested I play with scale, so I printed one image much larger than the rest.  I still think I need to print it even larger.

Two hours was dedicated to piecing together an audio/visual slideshow of Jay’s images and his voice narrating his situation.  Although I am glad I tried this, Stephanie and I agreed that the slideshow was too long, and that there was too much information for the viewer to absorb at one time.  However, I am glad I tried this, and maybe I can piece together images/sound after I have completed a more compact audio piece. 

I spent about three hours designing various ways to present the series of Jay.  I played with text color, spacing, and hierarchy of the handwritten text. 

I spent two hours listening again to my past interviews, so that I could get back into the audio component of my project.  Two things really stood out the most:  doorknobs and boots.  Jay mentioned at one time that the one thing he misses the most is doorknobs, for many reasons: security, safety, privacy, represents home.  In addition, during one session he talked about his 25-year old boots.  I thought the boots had potential because they have been the one constant possession in his life, the one thing he has kept since becoming homeless.   I wrote down phrases/objects like this that stood out in our interviews.

I met with Jay yesterday for another hour-long interview and brought that list of phrases/objects.  This time I was more comfortable than ever, and made sure he stayed on topic.  I am planning on submitting a 4-minute sound piece in a few weeks to the National Marathon of Homelessness, so I need to capture an interesting story.  We talked for 25 minutes about doorknobs about 30 minutes about his 25-year old snow boots.  There were times when he said “I can’t believe we are talking about my boots for 20 minutes” but I really feel that these two aspects had potential.  I believe some powerful phrases came out of the interview. 

I started listening to our interview this morning and started to create a soundscript, but I am in the beginning stages.  I need to do that this weekend.  Also, my previous soundscripts for my interviews consisted of key words/phrases for every couple of minutes.  I want this soundscript to include every word he says and see how this approach works, as I piece together words and think about creating an audio story. 

I also spent about 20 minutes touching base with SOS and reaching out to Alpha House.  Chelsea, from SOS, has recently sent me a written story by a woman who overcame homelessness (who I mentioned in my last weekly post).  This particular individual wrote 3 pages about her situation and has given me permission to use this for an art piece.  The story is very compelling.

The class critique went well, as many people were discussing possible avenues I can take for the collaborative black/white series.  Many people mentioned blowing up 10-12 of the images in an installation-like setting.  Some suggested that I create a book with all of the images in a story format.  Amanda also suggested I think about putting his captions not on the front of the images, but rather on the back, to further engage the audience. 

It was nice to meet with Chris Pullman.  He understood my goal of awareness and provided suggestions on how I can inform the public.  He suggested TV, radio, print, local news, etc.  He felt that I should be thinking about these avenues very soon.  He was optimistic about the different approaches I am taking:  sound, media, writing, collaboration.  He suggested I make a list of all of these mediums and make short-term and long-term goals for each one, which is a very good idea.  Also, the layout he was drawn to the most in the b/w series was the one that shows the actual lined paper Jay wrote on because he felt it was most authentic.

What’s Next:

I want to set up a meeting with Adrianne Finelli, my studio professor for my “Home” class.  Her thesis is very inspiring and I think she will provide insight.  I also would like to set up times to talk to Amanda & Erica to get their opinions on next steps.

I am going to also finish the soundscript for the recent interview and put together some clips for the 3rd Coast visitors on Tuesday.

I plan to make a list of long-term and short-term goals as well.

There are not enough hours in the day!

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