Friday, May 9, 2008

Old media Blog- The Canvas

Art and innovation has yielded new art forms and thousand of techniques.  The early people of this world were cave painters and simple hunters and gathers.  As culture began to grow we got better at growing food and had more potential for creating products.  It had been so long that painters had to create on boards of wood with week Bristol brushes.  The painters of Denmark and the Netherlands had created something big.  The invention of the canvas revolutionized the painting world.


Lighter painting surface
More portable
Paint absorbent material
cheaper to manufacture
easier to obtain materials
More brush definition
Better preservation
Larger sizes

The canvas is still used today.  It was a huge step for the flemish painters.  Now the painter had the opportunity to paint for themselves and friends and become the true rock-star that they are.  Today we are finding new ways to paint and new forms of art.  We will continue to create tools that help us to innovate and create our wildest imaginations.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

A new Me!

Wow, what a good looking guy, huh? This is my Avatar, Danson Laks. I tried to make him look like me as much as humanly possible. My first time on Second Life was very, very interesting. I circled around a supposed female for a bit as if she was an inanimate video game character until she said "Can I help you, Danson?" At this point I realized that Second Life gives you actual human interaction. I made friends with the Avatar I was accidentally pestering, but I realized I was in a REAL SOCIAL SITUATION where awkwardness was present. We can say some awful things on the internet. When we are cars on a highway, where you are visually and sonically separated by two thick layers of glass, you can swear at the top of your lungs, swerve at "idiots" and beep until your heart is content just because you can't see or hear the people you are cursing at. In the internet, things aren't much different. Some renegade bloggers can be extremely offensive with what they say in blogs, but I doubt they carry the same opinions in the real world. In Second Life, you actually can see and hear people. I couldn't punch my new friend's avatar in the mouth or say mean things because virtually, she was standing right next to me. My little brother moved back home from Boston for the summer and he signed up for Second Life because he was there watching my first experience. We walked around, flew about, and chewed the fat. It was far more real to me than emailing back and forth and it was far more visual than chatting on the phone. I really "hung out" with my little brother and it felt like I was because we look so much like our real avatars.

The internet can be anonymous, but I think people prefer to be a little exposed. People (including me) are switching to Facebook because you don't need an alias or obscure image of flattering angles. On Facebook, I am Dan Gross and almost all of the pictures of me were submitted by other people. I don't put much time at all into Facebook. I use it to stay in contact with hundreds of people who I otherwise would have lost all contact with. My Facebook profile hasn't been updated since I first joined three years ago, but when you look at my page, that is definitely me, not some kid trying to look like someone else.

I think people prefer to have their normal privacy, but a same level of exposure you'd expect walking around a city street. This makes it more like a realistic community, rather than a sea of bits of information and false identities floating around.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008


I LOVE LUCY! I really do!
Ever since I was a little girl watching reruns of I Love Lucy on Nick at Night, I have been captured by and down right addicted to the television series that set the tone for not only production and cinematography of television and film, but the de-polarization of traditional gender roles during its time. I chose to focus on I Love Lucy because it represents and intertwines so many aspects of visual culture.
I Love Lucy brilliantly debuted during an important moment of American history when technology moved entertainment from radio and film to an in-your-home simultaneous audio and visual stimulant called the television. American families now had a deeper connection with the stars they were watching in their living rooms every evening after dinner, and Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz used this to their utmost advantage. I Love Lucy was particularly unique due to the real life marriage between Ball and Arnaz which translated from their private life into their public, on screen scripted marriage. The actors played off the public's knowledge of their real life relationship, blurring the lines between realism and resemblance, causing an even greater effect on the viewing audience.
I have created an artistic 3D sculpture painting that illustrates three of my favorite episodes, but more importantly represents some of the major revolutionary anti-domestic ideals that I Love Lucy was famous for portraying. In each smaller hanging panel is an example of a particular moment where Lucy Ricardo is pushing her way through the traditional, unbending roles of what women in the 1950's were suppose to play. In Episode 56 entitled "Equal Rights" Lucy and Ethel demand their husbands to treat them as complete equals and as a result the men refuse to pay for their dinners later that night at a restaurant, therefore the girls end up having to wash dishes to pay for their meals. And to stay true to the situational comedy, the girls get even (as they always do) and fake getting held up in a robbery, throwing the men in jail to teach them a lesson.
Woman all over the United States recognized a little bit of themselves in Lucy Ricardo: the liberated crazy, looney, comic - a role known to only be suited for a man. Women identified with Lucy who was a lady ahead of her time, as the feminist movement did not reach it's hey day until the 1960's and 70's. Yet in 1951 I Love Lucy was revolutionizing the way society viewed gender and helped pry open the vice gripped around the polarization of men and women in the home and work place blending these worlds together.
Episode 39 is probably the most well known I Love Lucy to have aired, entitled "Job Switching". Here Lucy and Ethel speak for woman across the nation as they moan and groan over the repetitive dullness of cooking and cleaning, which was prompted by Ricky complaining about the pains of making a living in. The men of course challenge the woman to a contest to switch jobs and see who can last the longest. While the woman realize they aren’t cut out for chocolate factory work, the men have a revelation of their own when they encounter a disaster attempting to make dinner and almost burning the kitchen down. The episode resolved back into the traditional lines of domestication where Ricky went back to making the living and Lucy went back to being the housewife, setting audiences at ease who were not quite ready for such a bold social move forward.
The larger main canvas is painted using acrylic and has flowing spiral red ribbon to mimic the fabric behind the big heart during the opening title of the show. Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz are fixed in the middle of the art, as the household icons. People fell in love with the Ricardo's because they knew parts of the Ball/Arnaz family's real life was connected to what they saw on camera, and that made watching even more alluring. Lucille Ball played the first openly pregnant woman on television as she was expecting in real life. It was playing variations of their real off screen lives that lead to that intimacy and connection for the viewers. It was the everyday life inside the home of a hilarious yet fearless couple that tugged on the strings everyone's hearts. Even to this day, almost sixty years later, the show still communicates to audiences, and I am a prime example. Back then heterosexual couples looked toward the Ricardo's as their prime example of love and middle aged housewives looked toward Lucy Ricardo for what they hoped they someday could be. Now we look back with nods of approval that we might possibly not have had, had the world not been given Lucy Ricardo, the unconventional and revolutionary female model.

New Media

Although gaming isn't necessarily "new" media, it is relatively new within the past 50 or so years and continues to lend itself to newer and more advanced technologies. I took this opportunity to delve into the vast subject and educate myself. This is what i found...

A video game is a game that involves the interactivity of the player(s) through a user interface generating visual feedback on a video device. Some fun facts: Half of all Americans between 12-55 play video games, video games have been known to help children with following directions, problem solving and logic, learning computer technology, practicing fine motor and spatial skills.
First and foremost- the platform: electronic hardware in conjunction with software allowing the game to operate. Examples are: PC game is where player interacts with personal computer hooked up to a video monitor, console game is a specialized device that connects to a TV or video monitor, arcade game is designed in special cabinet enclosure for specific one game, and hand held game is self contained device that is portable. Although we cannot forget online and wireless games too!
Input devices is the controller and this ranges depending on the platform of the game.

History and Development:
The world’s first video game was invented in 1958 with “Tennis for Two” by William Higinbotham on an oscilloscope. The first commercially sold, coin operated video arcade game was “Computer Space” in 1971 by creator Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney. First home console was Magnavox Odyssey in 1972 used a standard television and game generated video signal. Next came ATARI with “Pong” in 1972 with an arcade version and a home version in 1975.Of course as the years went on newer editions of both Atari’s Pong and the Magnavox Odyssey appeared.
Released in 1976, Wonder Wizard 7702 was built using the Magnavox Odyssey circuit board and casing, but with the “Wonder Wizard” name on the top. The same year the Coleco Telstar (Coleco’s first video game) appeared and was the first system to use GI's AY-3-8500 chip, which proved to be very successful. The chip allowed 6 games to be played with more levels of difficulty and in color. Over the years, Magnavox came out with the Odysseys 300, 400, 500, 2000, 3000, & 4000. The Fairchild Channel F came out as the first programmable video game on the market with plug in cartridges containing ROM and microprocessor code rather than dedicated circuits.

Modern day video games:
Through the 70’s and 80’s Atari, Magnavox, Coleco kept releasing newer and more advanced video game systems as technology gave way. Although in 1980 Mattell entered the gaming market with Intellivision system that offered 12 games with better graphics and sounds than other competitors. In 1985 Nintendo Entertainment System was released and gave way for one of the world’s most popular video games. The next year Sega entered the console gaming market with the released of Sega Master System, followed by Sega Genesis in 1989. Now the modern gaming market is heavily controlled by Nintendo,
Sony, and Microsoft.

Gaming hey day:
Consoles are the most popular video game medium and the leader in video game platform sales. Today the video game industry is in it’s hey day and by the looks of things, it will only continue to rise. Right now the most popular games are Nintendo’s Wii, Sony’s Playstation 3, and Microsoft’s Xbox 360.

What lies ahead:
Gaming Industry is considered above average growth sector of the global entertainment industry and will continue to out weigh music and film through 1011. $633 million spent on game rentals. $6 billion spend on gaming software. 4.5 times VHS & DVD sales combined. Today the gaming industry out weighs the record industry and film industry COMBINED
By 2011 the worldwide gaming market will be worth $48.9 billion. 12.5 billion in U.S. region. Asia-Pacific region remains highest overall spending on games and will reach 18.8 billion. Gaming growth rate is second highest in Africa, Middle East, & Europe. Composers for film are now turning to composing for games. This no doubtedly will become an increasing trend for musicians taping into this stream of income.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

This is a picture of my avatar

This is a great idea to network and meet people without first judging them by what they look like. Having no boundaries in networking.

However, I do see the dark side where people can trick others through this kind of program.

Overall though, I think that this is the future.

We can be all we want to be, rather than what nature and our parents created us to be. A few years ago it would have still been very controversial as far as plastic surgery to alter our looks and whatnot, but now it's an open topic I believe, and soon, it will be the most normal thing with in society...(hopefully)

New Media

Everything now-a-day is multi purpose and multi angled. My project consisted of 2 square canvases that created 4 different images as you rotate them in increments of 90 degrees towards which ever side unanimously.

This was the fundamental explanation I did of two square chips rotating the same way the canvases did. But each time they rotated, they'd create a different system.

The purpose of this presentation is to accentuate the ability of modern day science to be efficient and small. The 2 square chips could fit in the pockets and could be brought out to form screens and displays that allowed the user to virtually do anything with any application.

TV Culture

We sit, stare, and eat. In this performance piece I explored the act of watching television with my friends. Not much was said and a lot was consumed. A truly American evening.