James(wt474) Final Animation Documentary

This semester seems really fast. Now it is already the final project!
So following I am going to talk about my final animation project, from both the generation of ideas, shooting method and final compositions.

At the very beginning, what i have in mind for an assigned 1 min animation is nothing but several separate fragments. I want to use Me and Julio down by the school yard(which is looping continuously in my mind recently) as my audio, some rage comic as elements, something cute(I don’t know whether this description is proper) and something with a relaxing style yet meaningful(at least for myself). With all these ideas I sit down and spend 2 hour to get a working storyline: rage comic combining with a story of my childhood about friendship, matching with the back ground music(Me and Julio down by the school yard), and add a piece of my favorite “boy game”.

Then come to the choose of software part. I am doing both stop motion and animation, and editing audio in order to match with my animation, so I used Dragon Frame, Premier, AE, Audacity and photoshop(adjusting stop motion). For shooting part, I cut off the rage comic materials printed or drawn. Then I placed them on green screen so that I can get rid of the background. Then I cut one piece of the video of KOF 97 Game. The beginning part was also in stop motion. The total shooting part took my around 10-15h in total.

There are problems, for sure. The first problem is in the stop motion. The animation and cinematography use two different route of pictures, so when I take pictures animation route is fine but cinematography route has delay. So finally I only can use the low-res version for my opening. And for the KOF part, the characters are moving to fast for system to tract, thus I have to do it frame by frame.

My story line starts with mama walked in and get shocked,then go back to what happened before–Julio play stones in park, kicked one on to my head, I got angry and go fight with Julio, after both of us get hurt we became good friend and walk down the street with corona(in the Me and Julio down by the school yard there is one lyric: the queen of corona. lol:P )

The final effect is as good as I have expected. Every thing turns out to be fine. I get everything I have designed and pursued after. To me this final animation is like a satisfied answer to this semester’s learning.

I believe several years later, when I come back to find this documentary, those memory will just popped up as if it happened yesterday:)

James’ Response the the animation(wt474)

The Sita sings the blues is a well made animation telling stories of Indian myth history happened with Sita. Unlike most historical documentation or introduction, this animation change the way people learn history. With blues throughout the whole animation, we slowly get into a serious of stories with three different lines: the first being the real life story, linked to us mostly. On the other side is a direct myth story tells the stories about the sita and rama. In the middle there is a linkage of sita sing blues as a bridge between the different plots. Also the funny narrative helped people to understand in a easy way.

I feel like this animation helped me to realize that what is real animation. In my mind animation is something easy to watch and teach people something smoothly. I really want to make my final project same as that style.

Revised group comics [James Tang(wt474) Shawn Gu(sg3711) Erin Wu (yw1606)]

final comic

Shawn Gu: For the comic project we together come up with some ideas, but finally we decided to work on GPS. I made the begining picture and the picture of 2 philosopher stating their ideas. I took part of looking up materials at first. Then we briefly discussed our blueprint and separate working on our own project. So for the first picture, I made the background universe so it fits GPS’s characteristic: universal, hard and interesting. I also psed a new version of gps on to the background to indicate the specific object we are talking about. For the third picture, it was actually 2 piece of work at first and I combined them together. I psed the background(structures) off their original jpg. Then we finally come together and revise it.  I love my first experience with Ps!


Erin Wu:This comic project I am working together with Shawn and James. It is an interesting idea that we decided to take GPS as our project due to these same recognition of gps. I made the third picture and the second last one. I photoshoped the symbolic philosopher off from the material. Then I photoshopped the talking bubbles onto it. For the second last picture I photoshoped the head of Lehman off and put him on to a body of angel. I also adjusted the font of pictures. During this project, I learned how to photoshop certain things off from its original picture and helped me recall several my former photoshop skills.


James Tang: For this IMA project I actually did the storyline, second pic, forth pic, fifth pic and the last pic. I get back to what I learned really quickly. For the different pics I used skills of ps off material, adjusting lights and other backgrounds elements and so on. It wasn’t a lot of work because we had a fully built storyline. Though finally it turns out to be a little different from what we expected, we still are satisfied with it. Working as a group, we actually didn’t have the second pic at first but when we meet up to combine our work together, we found it lacks connection between the first and the third pic. So I quickly made the second pic.


Reading & Video response (wt474)

Both materials are about copyrights. Music, movies, literature, every single piece of human work include other’s ideas. Just like what was said in the video: “everything is a remix”, the world we know, the knowledge we recognize are all based on others’ ideas and works. If we review how we learnt to know the world, copying, reciting was process that we can’t get rid of. Thus, till what extent can we bear the mind of copying and till what extent shall we  notify the patent? On one hand we believe ideas are properties and should be separate, while on the other hand we shall be opening ideas to public for common good. This is a paradox as far as I see because we may never figure out a absolute solution: we want the motivation of creating to be kept as well as not losing the public transparency in order to keep the social inspirations towards all its member.

It is just like walking on the  thin wire, the plagiarism is always listed with highest priority during our own creation: academic essays, art projects, research programs and etc. Referring to the reading, signal, sign, abstract ideas one author transformed to others when get copied, surrounds our daily life. We see them, recognize them without even think about what we have recognized. Actually it would be to hard for one to remember everything’s origin, and maybe that is one of the important reason why people nowadays tend to combine art with business mode to create a new system for creation.

As a bystander, we always justify our copy and vilify other’s copy when we get copied. But this is how society works. We copy, we transform, and we combine.

Understanding Comics: the link between virtual and real world

Understanding comics is a really useful book. By reading the first 4 charter, something popped up in my mind: never before had I ever think of why children(as well as adults) love comics so much! It is said that we will subconsciously gain a higher sense of identity if the character is built vaguely and the background is clear. People will automatically replace themselves onto the story line on some aspect. As we know understand how comics works, its rule can be applied to many other stuffs, including arts, public speech, and so on. When we are now creating comics by ourselves, we tried to have a clear definition and declare the audience by the first place. And for the story we choose the most recent, most common things happened around us. By these technique we are more likely to create what audience may recognize and approve.

Tarnish or Carrying forward: the context of art (James’s response towards reading)

The reading”On the Rights of the Molotov Man: Appropriation and the Art of Context ” was really an interesting piece, despite the story of different use of art context of one piece of documentary photo itself, the problem it brought up is also very significant: whether all of us today, with convenient technologies to reproduce or recreate all kinds of art work from different sources, should spread the imagination, enrich the forms and “copies” of art, or shall we thus stick more to the original context of art, understand and transplant it to other form under strict restrictions?

For me as  an outsider(which implied I am not an artist for the sake of my terrible drawing :P), I feel both of the point make sense because I can see they are both trying to make effort to improve the art among the human society. To make it more clear and obvious lets say it in this way: which method do you think will bring more good to you(as part of human society). The answer definitely will differ from person to person. When one artist, doing one’s best to record the truth of society, seriously represent it  to the society, that context and form should not be transfer into other form as that will break the meaning; however when one artist is fully open, want one’s work be one piece of cornerstone which help to generate other masterpiece, to inspire mankind, not transferring  it could be huge disrespect. So, as long as we have different purpose on the generation of art piece, why don’t we state that? One then could choose whether others should admire it or spread their imaginations.

So, here is what I believe: diversity is a necessity of society. It apply to almost everything, including the attitude towards art piece.

Technology: a double-edged sword in your hand

The motivation of inventions is laziness.  Nowadays with the development of social media and other online technologies, people have a trend to be less social: one may stick to their phones most time even face to face with their best friends! Thus a question poped up into my mind: Technology are developed to help human being, but as for now, is it really being used in the way we want?

The Machine stops tells a science fiction about the extinction of human being who rely totally on machine. When the machine stop, what will the society be? The answer  E. M. Forster gave us is the extinction of human. Judged from now, what author tried to explain has other versions: The Matrix; I, robot… the concern of over rely on technology is and will still be a topic we can’t skip.

Today, we see how the development of technology has changed our life. We now can buythings just through several click; we can see the view on the opposite of the world by just sitting in your own room; we can keep track of what is happening all around the world, contact our friends instantaneously without any limitation and etc. All these changes can be  paragon if we ignore the side effects-which sadly we can not. People are spending more and more time chatting, meeting new people in virtual world, less and less time in real life to hang out with their friends: we see people seeing their own phone all the time, paying little attention to what happened around them… human society are heading towards the world  E. M. Forster described on some aspect. Then we see the technology is actually a double-edged sword in your own hand: the way you use it determines a lot. the Development of technology itself is neutral, human however, take the full responsibility of how one apply it.  Don’t you see the advanced tech used in wars? Most of them can also be applied to our daily life directly!

I come up with a very vivid example-a app called somebody. Despite all the other things, the idea of its development is that to use technology help strangers to talk to each other, face to face. Different from other app, somebody introduce a new concept- to use technology as a improvement of real life relationship. By giving people a excuse and actual word, people will slowly restore some communication ability that we had lose in the rapid information intercourse era.

To sum up, technology is a double-edged sword, and with the awareness of this we need to take care of how we are going to use it.

James Tang