The last official week of Semester 1. What a journey I’ve had!
Despite some technical challenges, I delivered my Personal Project Proposal Presentation with some perspicacity, and other ‘P’ words. I was aware of the many shortcomings in my proposal – low word count, inadequate labelling of pictures, lack of detail regarding site and situation, even an unfinished sentence (ouch!). I had uploaded my file in a rush with two minutes to spare, as the echoes of the last time I said “Never again!”, as the deadline speedily approached, reverberated through my universe.
Anyway, it is done.
I received some favourable feedback from the group to counter my obsessive self-criticism. They seemed impressed by the concept and the visual aspect of my exhibit and I received compliments on the short video I produced as a memento of the occasion.
And now the next task takes its place at the head of the queue… and the next, and the next.
What went well? I think the whole exhibit came together in accordance with my intention to portray my journey into a world of EMF. I wanted to recreate the feeling I had when I first stepped into a world of EMF sounds and provide an interactive experience for the visitor. I felt that an additional visual element would compliment the whole thing and the prototype circuits that I constructed, and that have been a constant feature in my life during the project, were best suited to this end. The lighting was partly inspired by Miranda mentioning Hans Peter Feldman in a tutorial, although he can’t take all the credit. The project was the culmination of my journey through the semester, through the module and through my interests in sound, circuitry, light and shadow and my discoveries with EMF.
What could be improved? The presentation could have been more professional, but I approached the exhibit with the view that it was an exercise that would have rough edges. I hadn’t had a chance to test the lighting idea properly, but I did test the idea on a much smaller scale at home, so I was fairly confident that I could achieve the desired result. The turntable speed was a little too fast, so I realised that I would need to build my own mechanism using a geared motor to obtain the correct rotational velocity. I relied on what was available at SoA on the day, in terms of “furniture”, so had to make do with what I could find to borrow for the afternoon. I think that I could have taken many more photographs and videos during the “exhibition”. Having two cameras might have been useful, but I could only take so much with me. I also had to think quickly to make the most of the space and time available to me… a room with three doors and wall boards that do not reach the ceiling presented some challenges and imposed some restrictions but I was able to be flexible in my approach.
I do feel that I learned a lot from preparing this first installation. I found my experience as a giging musician to be invaluable in the preparation and setup of the exhibit. I was pleased with the overall appearance and I thought the soundscape was very effective in creating a strange but intriguing atmosphere. It was suggested that I had combined two different projects in my exhibit, each being strong enough to have stood alone. I do wonder if it was a lack of confidence that made me offer more “value for money” by showing the lighting installation along with the EMF sensor table installation. I do think the soundscape worked with both and would have worked with either installation, individually.
This module has really challenged me in ways I didn’t foresee. It exposed my lack of confidence in many areas of the project and I experienced some difficult times during the project process. I had successes and failures, became lost, then found, then thwarted, then enthused again. Ideas flowed but my ability to act on them was reduced.
In retrospect, I find I was more productive in this module than I thought when I was in the middle of it all. I’m very pleased with the work I produced, from the “null island” photos and soundscape, my “Gniklaw rof stoob” song and null_spud audio experiments, project presentations and research to the electronic circuitry, EMF sound recording, and the sound behind the silence installation. A real journey, indeed.