Week 1: Hello, World!

Or if you prefer;

Public class out { 
 Public void main (){
 Console.out.writeLine("hello world");
 }
}

(Thanks to Bomie for that one)

Well this is going to be one interesting semester!

Hello to fellow fellows studying BCM112 this semester – I am your host fellow classmate, Chloe. I am currently going on to my God knows what year this is at uni – although I am officially doing 3/4 of my course load as 300-level subjects – so I guess that makes me unofficially a third year student?

I am now on my third helping course – I initially started out with a Bachelor of Creative Arts, with a Digital Media major. I then decided I wasn’t a fan of all the artsy stuff, and transferred into the even artier Bachelor of Digital Media. Deciding that this was still too arty, I decided to do what any sane person would do and transfer into a Bachelor of Arts.

So now I am studying a BA and doing a double major in Photography, and Digital Media and Communications. Which is why I’m here, introducing myself to the rest of you.

I don’t really have much to say that’s meaningful, other than hello.

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Week 1 Blog Post – Defining My Practice and Expanding My Field.

I find it hard to limit myself to one field of practice. This is evident through the degree changes I’ve made in the past, and even now, with my double major in Photography and Digital Media and Communications. This explains it all really: I dabble in photography, as well as creating an assortment of digital content, as well as maintaining an assortment of different social media profiles for both my personal business and my gaming ‘habit’ (which I really count as content creating). I also like to expand some of my work to include bits and pieces of animation, design, filming and editing in addition to photography. I would one day love to explore the world of virtual or augmented reality, too. So if I were to really put it down to five key words or phrases, it would be the following:

Photography; animation; design; film; editing.

However that just scratches the surface of what I’d like to do. I consider myself a bit of a creative all-rounder. This is me now. However, during today’s exercises, what I’d like to do over the semester paints a very different picture. There is almost a completely different set of key words here:

Media Arts; photography; manipulation; installation; sensory.

Ideally, I want to always be expanding my skill set so that I can continue having being a bit of an all rounder – as I am to understand it, having lots of different skills is a benefit to many job positions as it encourages creative problem solving and can be a great management tool to connect with peers who specialise in these areas.

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My “mind map” from today’s exercise – very messy, and no where near resembling an actual mind map.

Seeing as I’m not limiting myself to just one field of practise, there are many many skills that I wish to have – I don’t intend on mastering all of them however; I believe in diversity and I would always like to keep myself open for opportunities to learn more. For the sake of this exercise though, I will limit myself to exploring a few skills that I may need for the second set of keywords – the ones that I aim to work on this semester.

I would, for example, like to learn a little more about the After Effects and Premiere Pro Adobe programs, so that I may make my content creation (specifically videos) a little more polished. I have begun to dabble into Illustrator a little bit, which is essential for some design aspects. I already know quite a bit about Lightroom and Photoshop as I have been using those for editing photographs for quite a few years. I would also like to look into learning more about Google Sketchup – a sort of program where you can build and render objects or scenes in 3D which would be great for working on installation concepts. In terms of the sensory aspect – I would need to do more research on sound production. I do know a bit about sound – however my skill set in that regard is also quite limited. I would also like to dabble into learning more about psychology and ways to evoke certain responses in people through a range of different ways, as I’d like my installations to be a multi-sensory experience; which may effect hearing, sight, touch and even smell (though I think I’ll steer away from taste for now).

I am not the first to appeal to multiple senses and construct my installations to evoke a certain response in people. Installations are a great way to interact with an audience and invite them to explore a space, perhaps even touch or feel objects, and get really close to details. This is something that I hope to achieve. One such example would be the “Google Train” (real title: The Other Side), which I had the privilege of experiencing myself in 2014’s Sydney Biennale. I’d like to look at this work a little more closely as a research point in the future.

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The entrance to the work, The Other Side (2014) Image retrieved from the Biennale Website.

I feel like I’ve pretty much got my thoughts out for today – and I risk rambling (which I’d rather avoid). I will elaborate and further develop some concepts however in future posts, while I brainstorm ways to move forward with the semester.

This is just a tribute.

(Try to imagine this inaugural blog post with the tune of a gentle guitar campfire ditty in the background.)

This is a short tale about the introduction of this semester’s shower-thoughts… in blog-form.

I am notoriously terrible at writing blog posts;  well perhaps not so much notoriously (yet), but I do have trouble striking a balance of objectivity and subjectivity. Some of the blog posts to follow may be good, some may be terrible and lacking any kind of substance. Some may be ramblings of incoherent thoughts I may have had throughout the day clumsily lumped together as the words leave my fingertips.

HOWEVER!

This may yet work out in my favour, at least for this semester. For this shall be a journey of autoethnography; which as I understand it, makes it a good thing that if nothing else, my ramblings will be subjective. The perspective my own. Not having to trawl through heavy academic texts that study the early manifestos of a now irrelevant and defunct artistic movement of a century ago.

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An image taken 3 years ago, purely because it was a pretty setting; with barely an indication of the context of it’s surroundings. ” A E S T H E T I C S “

Now, I have very limited knowledge on Asian culture. That isn’t to say that what little I am exposed to I do not appreciate. I once tried origami in primary school for a good hour and have since forgotten the elaborate instructions. I have been to the friendship gardens in Sydney and taken some rather aesthetic pictures. I did very well in year 7 Japanese language studies, getting a perfect score in memorising the numbers and hiragana alphabet. Indulging in llaksa and watching Fairy Tail at the same time was probably my most ‘authentic’ experience of Asian culture despite the fact that it was a conglomeration of two very different cultures in the most inappropriate setting (bed).

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In my defense, this was over 2 years ago. That makes it excusable, right? ‘Straya.

However, despite all that, I feel I have a slight unique advantage given to me. My lack of exposure to all of Asia’s subcultures means that I go into this auto-ethnographic study with a blank canvas (rather, an empty head). My experiences over the semester will replace my pre-written and rather misguided knowledge on such subjects and will give me an opportunity to take a deeper look into specific aspects of Asia in a digital context that were previously dictated in my mind by stereotypical points of view that I have picked up over my somewhat uncultured 25 years of life.

If you have managed to get to this point on my blog, you will have realised by now that I wasn’t lying when I said that I tend to ramble on. There’s nothing more to see here. It can, unfortunately, be a bit of a challenge to write a blog post about digital cybercultures in Asia when you have Tenacious D playing on repeat in your mind.

This is not the greatest blog post introduction in the world. This is just a tribute.