martes, 1 de noviembre de 2016

Week 11?

The last few weeks have been a bit turbulent, which did not allow me to give this project my all.
For this week, I am taking to class my concept for the book I intend to publish once the project is done.

Also, I have decided to refocus back to my original purpose, which was to raise awareness on psychedelics as a tool for helping with addiction and mental illnesses. Without this anchor point, I have realized that the project does not move me completely, as what got me into it was their medical potential. For the fall exhibition, I intend to bring a solid concept of the book with multiple pages, as well as a remixed video exploring my research goal.

I stumbled upon this image that conceptually reflects how our brain works under psychedelics

lunes, 3 de octubre de 2016

Week 7

Working on the paper prototype has helped me envision how the installation could physically look like as well as the possible limitations. Moreover, it has helped me refocus my research questions, where I feel that I am finally ready to start interviewing subjects. I am really looking forward to receiving feedback and incorporating it into my project.

In the past weeks, my project was constantly thwarted because I felt not having enough research, original content,  and answers about psychedelics would not allow me to pursue my goal. However, this week I have taken a leap forward and bought a basic interview lighting kit (see at the end), as well as watching multiple tutorials to be ready when the time comes. For my peace of mind, I sent the following to my closest group of friends:

"Dear friends, starting next week I'm going to start conducting several interviews (hopefully majority on campus) for my thesis project on psychedelics. With that said, I will need at least one person to come with me every time to help me carry and set up the lights as well as holding the boom. I will be meeting really interesting people who know a lot about an even more interesting topic. I will be posting the dates and times on the group, and it would mean the world if you guys could help me whenever you have time available. My estimate is that the interviews will take around 60-80min, but should never take longer than 2 hours. Who is willing to help?"
The seven of them replied that are willing and able to help me when needed. :) In case none of them are available, I will consult with my IML 441 peers.

Below are lists of my research on video installations and non-linear narratives, of artists that inspired me, and a brainstorm of ideas pertinent to the paper prototype.


  • "Hijacking Documentary into Video Installation Art" is a piece from a student from the University of Sydney.
    • Discusses her video installation "Islamic Intertext"
    • Considers notion that documentary can be hijacked by detourment
      • detourment: the use of two separate elements that displace the original, or the re-use of elements of well-known media to create a new work with a different message.
    • "Unlike documentary makers for film or television, video installation artists create documentaries that break through the media spectacle by representing information with a degree of plasticity."
  • "The Top 10 Film/Video Artists on Artsy" shares a list of 10 contemporary video artists
  • "A champion of nonlinear narratives: An interview with documentary filmmaker Florian Thalhofer"
    • Thalhofer created Korsakow (
      • Korsakow is a software for creating browser-based dynamic documentaries. 
      • It allows users without any programming expertise to create and interact with non-linear or database-driven narratives
      • The software can be used to produce documentary, experimental and fictional narrative works and has been integrated into live performance and installation pieces.
      • Charges $50 for educational projects
      • This is an interesting tool for the development of my prjoect

Artists // Inspiration

·      Tony Oursler (
o   Mini-narratives
o   5D experiences

·      Bill Voila (
o   His works focus on the ideas behind fundamental human experiences such as birth, death and aspects of consciousness
o   Chapel of Frustrated Actions and Futile Gestures

·      Nam June Paik (
o   Pioneer of video art
o   Electronic Superhighway: with this piece, Paik offers up his commentary about an American culture obsessed with television, the moving image, and bright shiny things.

·      Christian Marclay (

    • Surround Sounds: four silent synchronized projected animations

Brainstorming // Video Installation

How to properly use space to enhance the viewing experience?

1. Four screens with different content in simultaneous

o   All in front of the viewer
o   Designed as a cube projected on each wall
§  Viewer chooses what screen to look at
·      Main one: Interview’s
·      Remixing the archive
·      Nature shots
·      Animated visuals
·      2. Different screens with different content offering a mini-narrative
o   Viewer does not need to watch the whole project to leave with valuable insights
·      3. 5D cinematic experience
o   Including book, or tablets with additional/complementary info
o   Creating provocative artwork to enhance the overall experience
·      4. Video wall

    Interview equipment bought

    1. Lighting kit ($190) + 3-year protection plan ($34) – 2X1000W w/ 500W EZ Setup Softbox Kit) 
    2. 6 Muslin Clamps ($7.5) 
    3. 4 sand bags ($16)

    Lighting tutorials

    • "Understanding Light Stops"
    • "Lighting for Interviews"
    • "Understanding White Balance"

    Nos vemos la próxima semana,


    lunes, 26 de septiembre de 2016

    Week 6

    The next weeks will be essential for the development of my thesis project. After meeting with Bodie and Elizabeth last Thursday, I have decided (thank god) to ditch the idea of doing a classic documentary, as the project is now morphing into an interactive documentary slash art installation. The latter will allow me to create a non-linear narrative, which alleviates the tasks of researching, connecting the research, and ultimately writing a script.

    I will soon be meeting with Kyle McClary (Chemistry PhD interested in psychedelic research) to discuss my research and hope he can offer some guidance as to which are the key aspects related to the topic. Moreover, Kyle can put me in contact with other students and professors related to the topic of interest. Also, I will be meeting Scott Fischer to tell him about my research goals and discuss about the possibility of including VR and/or AR in my final installation. I am hoping this meeting will help me focus and narrow down main ideas for the form in which I will be displaying my research.

    While this is happening, I keep trying to gather more research and make sense of it, but I definitely want to have a clearer idea of what I will be doing so I can make better use of my time and move forward rather than sideways–or diagonally? Also, I need to figure out how to make a prototype that will help me progress, rather than just do it for the class.

    I hope by next week I have had successful interactions that allow me to narrow down the project and focus more on getting content that can be used for the December exhibition, and hopefully, for the final exhibition.

    Con mucho amor,