I’m still catching up with last weekend, the last test video has just been edited and I am ready to share it with you now. I ended the day after I had an idea the previous night to combine to the test videos I have been using, the innocent and the perpetrators of violence together. Which meant that I had to re-cut the longer of the two to work together without over running massively or forcing me to repeat the shorter clip which would lose any real effect the piece may have.
I projected it initially, soon realising that I had to reposition the model miniatures either side to fall under the light of each clip. The first few times I ran the piece it was working however the way the footage was falling onto the models it felt uneven. So I went back to tweak it before running it a again. I had to rejig the model, which now sat more comfortably. They had lost the parallel nature of being a street, I had to divide them so they fell on one side or another at the back where the street wraps around.
It was working now, the violence building up for either side – fair enough the timing was a little off, it’s a test so it’s not a big concern. However I felt that the division between both was taking away a big part of the work. By dividing the street I was also losing the relationship between the two, confined to one side or another which is not reflective of the genre or even reality, Violence in those terms knows no boundaries, which I had set-up here. When the violence’s blanketed over the whole town it has more impact, but less sculptural. Having the two channels of action I can potentially show more now. Meaning I need to mix the two up over the two sides of the streets. I also feel that I need to look at violence committed indoors, so another separate piece needs to be built and footage edited together. Also do I still restrict it to white on white violence or do I move to pure violence in the genre, seeing the victims as just victims of violence not race or otherwise. I’m going back to making and sourcing then to see how things progress further. I definitely have a working piece it just making the most of the potential content to have the most impact.
Then comes the question of how far I have come with this piece, the historical roots from Melton Mowbray’s history of what was thought to be violent incident, which, when compared to today’s standards it’s pretty tame really. I’ve abandoned the literal Wild West translation to look solely at the violence of that era through the lens of the genre. If I look at the true roots of the piece; High Plains Drifter (1973) a horror/western that sees a ghost turn a town on its head before letting it be burned to the ground. I seem to have forgotten the other the town pre-violence, not just during and post violence, which could however be illustrative. The purity of the white model miniatures, which is essentially a blank canvas for the town too. I can project onto it whatever I please, I could tell a narrative which is not my style (expect Playing with Plastic (2016)) or leave it blank for audience interpretation which is my style.
After the events today outside the Palaces of Westminster I realised that my current work being discussed today maybe a little out of taste. However if we give into the terrorists, they have won. I want to explore the effects of violence in the Western genre, the human impact, which I feel I am getting closer to with this 2nd test from the weekend. I am sharing with you still as I won’t be scared off either.
Again there is no audio, I feel the images alone are more effective in this test. Below you can find the original test video to make more sense of what I am projecting.
The next test video’s I’ll be sharing was a combination of the two, working together, or even against each other on the same set-up of model miniatures.
I would have liked to share all of my test videos from Sunday, however I’ve met some technical complications that has so far prevented me from editing the test footage. So far I can share the first of the day. Overall I completed four tests, two using the original test videos projected in consecutive order. I found straight away the impact of the 15 model miniatures have greater impact than four. I did however find that I need to stick with exterior violence – that enacted outdoors, not indoors as I have mixed it up for the original test.
Below is the original test video with audio, I decided to not record audio so I could focus on the imagery.
The next test which I’ll be sharing will be the 2nd video projected onto the model miniatures.
A quick update, after a few weeks of silence – as I was only painting a coat of paint a day I am happy to now move onto the next series of test. I’m considering two test to carry out in the studio.
One is a straight forward reusing of the two test videos on the miniature town, which is going to be straight forward. I would then like to look at a more complex set-up, reworking both the videos to be included simultaneously, projected on either side of the street. I’m already thinking that whatever I have exported will determine the layout of street. The distance between the two videos, if any, they will change how it plays out.
Whilst in the studio I shared my work, it was suggested that the internal scenes I have used in the videos could be out-of-place in the exterior setting. Maybe an interior model, maybe a saloon could be made, I could then make a fresh set of test videos, external and internal violence. I’ve never attempted an internal piece, it’s something I would like to try it, pushing my making skills in a new direction, I’m already looking forward to the visual research already.
It’s been full on of painting today, so out with the paint and brushes and the first coat is now on all of the model miniatures. After priming the remaining pieces that were still having detail added I have finally moved into the next phase before I get the projector out. I finished my day in the studio with a quick layout of the town. I’m really pleased with how they are looking. I am thinking they will need a further 4 or 5 coats before they are a solid white. Putting me on schedule to have another test at the middle of the month or late March.
It was a rather quick day in the studio. I’ve been adding a few more details to the remaining models whilst I finally got the paint out and made a start on priming them all. Just as I was finishing I realised that I missed off the cross on my church piece. It’s a very minor detail which i will consider adding or not as I don’t want it to delayed the next test.
Next time I’ll be going into full painting mode. I’m hoping to undertaking another test later next month or early April.
A day later than planned but without any more delay I’d like to share yesterdays events in the studio. It’s been back to operation “add detail” to most of the model bar two or three which are ready for the paint to be applied. It was all about the matchsticks creating the detail, with them being almost to exact size in some cases I have used them to create simple gestures that are completing these simple model miniatures. I know I say this a lot but I am really please with how things are going.
I might be getting out the paint next time as I make a start on some of the models, whilst a few need more work to them. It wont be much but will make all the difference.
After writing last weekend off due to the weather I have made a much-needed return to the studio again. I decided to call a halt to making any more model miniatures for now. Focusing on my now scaled down collection, adding some minor details to them all.
I began by adding the roofing to sides of the models, which I should more or less complete next time. I also turned to using match-sticks for the posts for a few of the pieces. I’ve discovered that these pieces will be harder to paint, I’m also amazed at how these little additions complete them even before paint is even added.
I’m looking forward to adding the last details before painting gets underway.
I’m finally able to share with the video of my debut performance – at Imp-Fest (2016) at Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre, London 19/11/16. It will be available here for a short time, taking up its home over here. I would like to thank my sister – Rachel for documenting it over the course of 3 performances that night. Here is an edited version of the whole night.
I think I’ve reached a point where too many more maybe too many to work with for the moment. I’ve made a further 5 pieces today in the studio increasing my total to 15. I might have to return to some old sketches or photographs for more including a general store then I think it’s time to stop, add more detail and paint them all white.
So onto today’s model miniatures, first a very simple livery stables, followed by an expanded jail. I then made two smaller models, both very similar apart from their roofs, one flat, the other traditionally raised. I finished off with a more complex hotel/saloon.
I’m pleased with the progress I’ve made in such a short time, It will slow down now as I add detail which is always a slow process before I paint and see what overall effect they have.