Part 2: Graphic and Communication Design

40 Hours

40 HOURS

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"The time period is inherent in the piece"

It is part of the human condition to need to use periods of time to give our lives structure, rules and routine. 40 hours is the standard working week for a person employed in a 9 to 5 job. What can you do with 40 hours?

For this project I have to create a work where the time period of 40 hours is inherent in the piece. In response to the idea of 40 hours, I defined a set of rules where I document my activities by taking photographs or screenshot whatever is in front of me every 30 minutes for 10 hours a day starting from 12PM to 10PM as this is the period of time where I am most active. I then print each individual image out layering on one same piece of paper each per day. The 4 pieces of paper each represent the time period in which I took to produce the outcome within the 40 hours.

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RESEARCH

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Xavier Antin: Just in Time

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"London-based artist Xavier Antin devised this beautifully orchestrated printing process to create his book “Just in Time, or A Short History of Production. "While I don’t think the paper was physically fed through all four printers at once, each printer was responsible for a colour palette starting with an 1880 stencil duplicator printing magenta and ending with 1976 inkjet printer for yellow.""

This printing chain inspired my response to the 40 hours project. I really like his working process using four different printers of different time period. Each page was fed individually through the printers each responsible for a CMYK colour. The final images that came out as a results of this process are very beautiful coloured images from four layers of different coloured ink. I like the simplicity of the process and the charming imperfect layering of the colours that gave the images a 3 dimensional look and a nostalgic feel. The layers are representative of the timeframe spent to complete each page as the paper is fed through each printer.

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Multiple exposures

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This image combines 6 different images together into one and it represents the movement of the basketball player while taking a shot. I like that each frame is captured in a split second but when presented together, time is also depicted through the connected motion. Within this specific image, the strong lighting and the dark background made it easy to distinguish between each frame and the speed at each point can be determined by how close each frame each towards one another. I will only be able to achieve this effect through Photoshop or multiple exposure images within a similar condition. However, I will not be able to achieve this effect through printing because all the white spaces will be filled with black ink.

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I enjoy viewing this multiple exposure image because it has created such a surreal environment that combines together the cityscape and the clouds. The sky is quite dominant in this image because of its large area of white that expose the image. Both photographs can be taken from two different times and locations then combined together digitally on the computer and this could be one of the method that I chose to use to create my outcome.

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Fong Qi Wei: The Passage of Time

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This is a very cool project by Fong Qi Wei that depicted layered collages of landscapes and cityscapes photographed over a 2-4 hour period. He was able to convey time visually in still photograph by layering and combining photographs taken over a period of time in a very creative way. Normally, both the length of time an exposure takes or a series of photos meant to depict the passage of time can be somewhat ambiguous without a written explanation. He digitally sliced the images to create a layered collage. He shoots at sunset or sunrise to obtain a wide variation in light and then carefully cuts each image to reveal the timeframes. It's cool that the basic structure of the landscape is still present in the photograph but each strip or panel layer shows a different slice of time. The transition from daytime to night is gradual and noticeable in every piece, but would not be something you expect to see in a still image. This makes the audiences experience the scene more than a snapshot. 

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Eadweard Muybridge: Locomotion

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"On 15 June 1878, Eadweard Muybridge set up a line of cameras with tripwires, each of which would trigger a picture for a split second as the horse ran past. Muybridge’s photographic skills were called on to prove whether a galloping horse lifts all four hooves off the ground at one point in its sequence of motion. Some already suspected that this was so, but the key moment was too fleeting for the human eye to see."

I believe that these images are very cool because it captures perfectly the exact movement and position of the animals within the split second as it moves allowing for us to study the variety of movements or methods that animals use to move from one place to another. Time is presented in frames like a stop motion or an animation from the first frame to the last frame however, the time taken to move might be as quick as less than a second. I like how the individual shots are presented in clear rows and columns and we can easily notice the different movement within each changing frame. It is kind of like a storyboard that takes us on a journey through the very precise period of time. Also I like that the starting point really depends on the direction and the position of the animals be it from top to bottom, left to right or right to left and so on.

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Sam Taylor-Wood: The Acceptance of Motality

"Still Life (2001) has been said to be one of the most classical works in contemporary art. It carved a permanent record for itself in art history with hardly any commentary. This is not just a Still Life. It is part of a classical genre that contains symbols of change or death as a reminder of their inevitability. Its focus was upon confronting the vanity of worldly things through often subtle signs of elapsing time and decay."

I think that these are very beautiful time-lapse videos that capture the decay of organic fruits and animals. Initially they look exactly like still life paintings but as some time past, the fruits start to grow moulds and the rabbit starts to decay. It looks as if the image decomposes itself. By the end of the film, nothing is left but a grey amorphous mass as well as bones and uneaten flesh. Time is very inherent within this project because the subject has to be left there on that position in a very long time. What I like about the piece of work is that there are always the control subject such as a plastic ballpoint pen, a cheap contemporary object that wouldn't decay. The message behind the videos are also very strong telling us to accept our mortality and the inevitable death.

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Shinichi Maruyama: Time-lapse images

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"NY-based photographer Shinichi Maruyama created these lovely photographs using nearly 10,000 individual photographs of a nude dancer in motion."

These abstract images remind me of Japanese ink wash paintings, as if the figures were created by the stroke of a thick brush. The artist has captured the beauty of the human figure and the motion. It is amazing that the figure in the image, which became something similar to a sculpture, is created by combining 10,000 individual photographs of a dancer. By putting together still individual moments, the resulting image as a whole appears to be something very different. Unlike one still image of a dancer, there is presence in life and the concept of time and speed is represented through the entire movement. This also reminds me of a speed car passing as well. This can clearly be linked to the 40 hours project such as capturing the movement of a person, animal or object and presented in one complete image that shows the range of motion through time. 

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James E. Murphy: What colour is it?

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"Created by Berlin-based artist and designer James E. Murphy, What Color Is It is a website that translates the current time (based on a 24-hour clock) into a corresponding hex colour value. The color of the page changes gradually as each second ticks by. This could be a great start to a watch face for the Apple Watch."

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Hiroshi Sugimoto: Theaters

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"I'm a habitual self-interlocutor. Around the time I started photographing at the Natural History Museum, one evening I had a near-hallucinatory vision. The question-and-answer session that led up to this vision went something like this: Suppose you shoot a whole movie in a single frame? And the answer: You get a shining screen. Immediately I sprang into action, experimenting toward realising this vision. Dressed up as a tourist, I walked into a cheap cinema in the East Village with a large-format camera. As soon as the movie started, I fixed the shutter at a wide-open aperture, and two hours later when the movie finished, I clicked the shutter closed. That evening, I developed the film, and the vision exploded behind my eyes."

Sugimoto captures beautiful photographs where time is inherent in the pieces. It looks like an ordinary long exposure photograph in the cinmea however, the beauty of the photographs are also in his process because he would open the shutter just before the 'first light' hit the screen and close it after the credits finished rolling and before the house lights came on. He basically captured the entire movie within one picture which I believe is very fascinating. One and a half whole hours captured continuously and the results are beautiful completely white screen that illuminates the interior of the theatre. It allows us to see the normally invisible, "to experience a finite collapse of time".

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francis alys: sometimes making something leads to nothing

I like that the concept of time is clearly communicated through the size of the ice cube and the effort/strength needed for him to move it along with him. Francis Alys’ Sometimes Making Something Leads to Nothing was shot in 1997 and involves the artist pushing an ice block through the streets of Mexico City until it melts into nothing. His task at the beginning is laborious and sisyphean, as he struggles to move the imposing weight along the pavement in what seems to be a futile performance. By the end his act has become playful as he delicately kicks the small ice stone across the sidewalk, akin to a child entertaining himself by kicking a pebble on his walk home from school. Perhaps the most refreshing part of the piece, aside from the poetic simplicity of it all, is its complete analog nature.

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Stephane Vetter: Time-lapse

This time-lapse of the night sky is different from all the other time-lapses I have seen because of the use of a fisheye lens. With in a short period of time the maker was able to show a true representation of the entire visible sky. It also includes a five-hour star trail and Vetter even takes time to label signifiant stars and other objects visible in the sky. Each star trail images is created through a very significant period of time but the results are these beautiful lines of stars that sweeps across the entire picture frame from the moment you press the shutter until you release it. 

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Sungjin Ahn: Timelapse

"In May of 2012, filmmaker and photographer Sungjin Ahn set out to capture something both beautiful and somewhat rare: the Joshua Tree. But what began as a simple time-lapse of the trees — which can only be found in western Arizona, southeastern California, southern Nevada, and southwestern Utah — turned into something more for Ahn when he discovered that Joshua Tree National Park might someday lose the right to that name."

 

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