I Does DAT

Path Trails – Final Video
March 26, 2007, 3:16 am
Filed under: Production of Space

This video is a response to the module regarding the Production of Space. It traces the paths of shoppers in the Drake Circus centre in Plymouth, UK in an attempt to visualise the directional choices we make and show how they are affected by what we consider to be our ‘personal space’.

The slow motion aesthetic is based on the work of Canadian video artist Bill Viola and was created using DynaPel’s ‘Slow Motion’.

Jeff Wall
December 5, 2006, 12:59 pm
Filed under: Production of Space

One thing that interests me in my ‘what is personal space?’ project is paths obviously created against those set out. These are everywhere; one that particularly got me thinking about it was in the Rodin Museum gardens in Paris where the laid out path went all the way around the outside of a sparse hedge and past the toilets to get to a statue, but plenty of people had obviously decided to take a short-cut through the hedge and it had come to resemble a path itself. A local example is in town next to The Good Companion. It simply cuts a corner and has become a well-used footpath.

I think this picture by photographer Jeff Wall demonstrates this abnormal human-creation of paths quite nicely:

Jeff Wall's Crooked Path

Some space notes
December 5, 2006, 12:49 pm
Filed under: Production of Space

Some notes I made on my space project the other day, just for reference:

1st step – long open shutter photography of people in a normal busy open space – mall? university?

2nd step – sheepdog trials. can people be ‘herded’ using subtle personal space violation? capture on video/more photography. do the paths change?


personal space studies
path creation – natural/abnormal
jeff wall – crooked path
photo from rodin museum
photo of path by voodoo/maplin

herding and dispersal

2 experiments:
1. can people be herded in a public area using personal space violation?
2. how do people disperse when personal space is violated?
objective: ‘what is personal space?’

After the Ferry…
November 24, 2006, 1:30 pm
Filed under: Production of Space

My general focus for the first space project is paths and the movement of people in relation to other people and their surroundings. It has transpired through this thinking that I’m particularly interested in the concept of ‘personal space’, that is, the space around you or what some people might call an aura. I want to look at the the dispersal of people and the alteration of their movements as dictated by their personal space.

A simple example is when you’re walking down the street and someone comes towards you and you both keep moving to the same side to get past each other. You are both altering the path you would have otherwise taken because someone is about to enter, or ‘violate’*, your personal space and this new path would often take an odd zig-zig shape because of both parties stepping the same way and back.

A couple of thoughts on this:

In the November 16th edition of the Channel 4 Internet round-up podcast, ‘thisisaknife’, there was a featured prank where a large group of people went to a park and followed a random person around in single file. It was interesting to see how long it took for these people to notice they were being followed (very closely – it was not subtle) in terms of personal space, since we all know we can usually sense the presence of another person near us even if they’re out of our line of sight.

I thought it would be interesting to look at the random movements taken when being chased, for example a group of children playing Tag, an antelope hunted by a cheetah or even a fighter plane dogfight.

Also of interest to me are the non-spaces left vacant by traced paths over a period of time, why these are unused and how they could be reclaimed or utilised better.

* Edit: when I say violate, or entering personal space, I’m really talking about the intersection or overlap of two personal spaces. I think this is a particularly fascinating point of interest, especially as it’s so subjective – we each consider our personal space in a slightly different way and by creating an aesthetic of traced paths over time I hope to reflect these intersections and potential intersections and their effect on how the space is navigated. People and their personal space become unpredictable moving obstacles within the space. Also have you noticed that, as you walk past someone on the street you sometimes unintentionally move in towards them or away from them? I think this could have something to with their perceived personal space more than our own and there could be some kind of invisible field that attracts or repels us. Or that could just be a crazy theory.

A Better Space Man
November 7, 2006, 11:55 am
Filed under: Production of Space

I have decided on a new character on which to base my approach to the space we are going to tomorrow. His name is David Shrigley and he’s a Glasgow-based artist.

I intend to map the movmements of people around the space to see the routes they take.

Arthur Fonzarelli: Transgressor
October 31, 2006, 9:19 pm
Filed under: Production of Space

The FonzTask: Pick a person and describe their impact on space and how they transgress it.

I have chosen Arthur Fonzarelli, or ‘The Fonz’, as my subject because for some reason it’s the first name that popped into my head. I decided to think about how he effects space anyway and he seems to in a number of ways.

Whenever Fonzie arrives in a scene, he has a huge impact. The focus of the other players and of the audience instantly shifts to him and in this way he is placed in the centre of all space in the virtual world that is Happy Days. This often occurs before he has even appeared on screen because of the sound of his motorcycle arriving, at which point he transcends space by being out of the scene physically yet still at the centre virtually.

Also on arrival, the mood is usually lifted, as if everyone feels safer and ‘cooler’ when he’s around. Altering the mood of the space has a real effect on the actions of the people in it and their general activities in the show. Unlike any other character, the presence and existence of The Fonz in that time and space cannot be ignored and his influence is universal.

The way in which I believe he transgresses space lies in his conduction of business. Whenever he wants to have a serious conversation with another character in Al’s diner he uses the phrase “step into my office”. By ‘office’, of course he means ‘toilet’. When anyone else uses that space they use it for, as it was intended, going to the toilet. When Fonzie uses it, it is transformed into an office, an arena for serious discussion and privacy of a nature unrelated to relieving oneself.

Max/MSP and Pure Data
October 31, 2006, 3:48 pm
Filed under: Major Project, Production of Space, Sound Practice

Throughout the year I forsee myself doing a lot of work with a very powerful piece of software called Max/MSP. In the 2nd year I created a negotiated project which was an interactive sound app and was tipped off about this software as an ideal route so I had a play with it and found it to be a style of programming (patch programming) that, on a basic level, I took to fairly well. However, this meant that my 30-day trial was used up back then and, not knowing how much I’d want to use it in the future, decided to have a go at the open source equivalent, Pure Data (pd).

Since I got to grips with this, and since it has its own advantages over Max, I intend to immerse myself in pd and use that instead. Any tips will be greatly appreciated, particularly if they help with the projects mentioned anywhere on this blog.