March 9th: Image Week (Day 1) GIFs

Today began the start of image week. We were told to prepare something over the weekend which we would animate into GIFs and after having spent my weekend researching more into my topic, the basis of superstitions seems to come from the deeply seated anxieties that we all have inside of us. It is almost as if we have a hole that we are trying to fill inside our heads to calm our nerves and think that we are in control of a situation. Something that inspired me was a piece of work I found through my reading from Raoul Hausmann named the Mechanical Head. It is comprised of a tailor dummy head with an absence of life as the only things that it attributes it’s identity to are the things attached to it which are made up of robotic devices. After my interview with my traditional Chinese friends, I took away from it that it seemed to be to be wanting to control something that was out of your control. It was almost as if we all have these holes in our head which we are hopelessly trying to fill. Based off of this idea, I used illustrator to construct an image of a girl with holes in her head and water leaking out. She is seem catching the water in a glass in an attempt to subdue the giant fire that is happening beside her.  In class, I changed the colors of the fire so that it would to be flashy and resemble a real fire. I adjusted the colors on separate layers in photoshop and then applied the frame animation from the layers. I then exported the animation into a GIF as Joao taught in class and as I had learnt through the internet before. 

Over the weekend, I was inspired by the mechanics of a crayon factory, images which I found through the internet. The overall look of the factory was especially bright and colourful and yet mechanical and imaginary at the same time. I envisioned a place where superstitions were crafted just like in the crayola factory and modelled my own factory system in illustrator after that. The machine would pump out colorful explanations and reasonings for things in life and the people would pass by on the conveyor belt and accept those possibilities because it fills the hold in them. 

I didn’t want to animate the GIF frame by frame because it would take too long, so instead I used knowledge that I gained on a previous project using AfterEffects to make the animating process a lot faster. I used AfterEffects to set the path of the boxes that came out and animated it so that the wheel turned and the people would reach the boxes in time. I was very happy with this method because it provided a smoother outcome much faster. I then exported the video and imported it into photoshop as a GIF. 

I was quite happy with the outcomes that I made today and looking at other people’s outcomes, I find that I want to experiment more with GIFs later on in this project, perhaps joining photography and my own drawings together to create GIFS. My GIFs all ran quite smoothly, but there was a certain quality to the more choppy and hand made GIFs that classmates such as Brogan made which were quite dainty and attractive as well. 

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