Archive for January 16, 2009

Another idea

January 16, 2009

I’ve been thinking about how I can take my experimentation and pattern-making to the next level. I have my mid-point review coming up in March and need to start making some significant progress otherwise I won’t be making the most of it. Plus the way I see it, the more work I do now the more I can develop my ideas and learn from my mistakes and early prototyping which should then lead to something much stronger at the end.

In the next few weeks I’m planning to make a small interactive installation which basically consists of a circuit of lights (LEDs) on a grid where the user can switch them on and off to then produce a pattern. The control of the lights would be through another grid of buttons that correspond with the lights on the other board. Each button would control the corresponding lights – turning them on or off.

I was trying to imagine how the user would react to this piece. Would they know what to do with the buttons/lights? Or would they need to be told. Then I realised that the user is not going to have a clue what this grid of lights is and will just start playing with it. What if they create any type of image out of the lights, random doodles, shapes, anything? Why would they assume it had anything to do with patterns? And how would I restrict their use of the device and therefore make it related to my actual subject of Islamic patterns?

Well, whilst discussing the practicalities of making the piece with Kenji (full time student) who knows a bit about electronics, I realised there was a way to not only restrict the user from doing something completely of their own accord, but also make them aware of some characteristics that make up an Islamic pattern. I don’t want to give the game away just yet though as I want my fellow students to figure it out for themselves when it comes to the mid-point review. I’m hoping to have this ready by then.

I’m really looking forward to this! Let’s just hope that it actually works when the time comes!

Group Crit

January 16, 2009

We had to participate in a group crit yesterday where each of the 6 full-time students were required to read out a 500 word review of their projects and show some examples of their work so far. They were then told to listen with no participation from themselves (which some found more difficult than others!) while the rest of us discussed their work.

This was funny for obvious reasons but highly interesting and useful for the individual whose work was being discussed.

Being a part-time student I don’t have to do the same for a few more weeks, but even in this session I could gain some ideas and tips on what to be aware of in my own work.

The biggest issue that came to light for me was that people will always perceive your work differently and they may see a similar or completely different communication to someone else through the work. The aim for me in creating my work would be to try and make the message or topic as universally understood as possible. There will still be some who see something else to the rest but if the majority get it somewhat right then you must be on the right track. Right?