Friday, October 22, 2010

Digital Video

Digital Video 2 is the first art class that is stretching me as much as the classes I've taken that aren't in my major. It's so hard! I'm used to working hard in spurts but working not hard most of the time. I like to play my strengths while only stretching a little to incorporate a new skill. Not in this class! A pretty unrelated computer art class counted as my prereq, so I have never fired up Final Cut Pro in my life and loads of people in this class have projects already that are just so finished, with such forethought (or maybe intuition) for the tons of considerations that we have to keep track of for even a small piece. Basically we are 4 weeks in and I spent the first 4 weeks drowning but I just yesterday passed over the hump of the learning curve.

I have barely had time for other things this term. I am watching all of the dry tutorials, reading the e-texts, checking out the camera every week, and going to the mac lab for editing about 4 nights a week. I have approximately nothing to show for it, but I did get ideas. Video is really important for documentation and sharing, and there is really no better time to learn it than in undergrad when any equipment I could want is free to use.* But I am having an extremely hard time thinking like a filmmaker.

My professor told us to think of it as sculpting in light and time. My strong inclination is to point the camera at something I like and not move it except to replace the dv tape every hour. I am comfortable with the camera as a tool for recording but not as a tool for point of view or explanation or composition. So, I have been carrying the camera around with me and shooting this and that, and then uploading it and thinking about whether it worked and why.

My professor cautions us against silos (compartmentalizing our classes and life) so I am trying to record my other work. I am thinking about recording my mail art project for my in-camera editing project, mostly because I didn't think of a different idea and I want to do sped up paintings on camera.

Tomorrow I am going to ask someone from my film class to record me in my grass suit.

*the day after I got excited about infrared LEDs (I guess I never knew a camera records them, even though I am sure I knew it could see them) and shooting at night, I found out that there is an infrared LED flashlight at media services I can use.

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