Monday, 21 December 2009

Something Uncanny happened to me.

On the night of Friday the 18 everyone in Flat13, the accommodation I am living in, went away to see their families for the Christmas holidays, and I was all alone. I haven't realize how quit the halls was because usually it pretty noisy so living in quietness just felt scary. I actually started to get a bit paranoid, thinking there was someone following me. I was so scared :(. Although I have made it thought the night unharmed I still remember that uneasiness of silence.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Environment art 9: Mirror layout research

Yesturday I thought I could look at the living rooms of the 1960s and I didn't know they had sliding glass doors to the garden in those days, it gave me an idea for another scene. which having a mirror on the wall by the side of the sliding glass door.
so here are my new research and my sketch.

I am still deciding but I think the living room seems more interesting because it treats the mirror like an eye on a wall, it knows whats going on outside and inside. It judges if the house is clean, that apperance of visitors and the condition of your garden.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Environment art 8: Mirror's design research

Today I went to Homebase to gather some ideas on making my mirror. It wasn't too hard, but I have to be careful with them because they are quite expencive, atleast to me.

The Stepford Wives (1975) Review

Today I will be reviewing the movie The Stepford Wives (1975)

The film starts with a family moving into Stepford, because living in New York was too crazy. But while there Joanna, the main character, felt that something is wrong with the women in Stepford. They all are so perfect. Soon her best friend Bobby became one of them and she felt that her turn is right around the corner.
Stepford Wives depicts the men as control freaks, not caring what the women thinks. They want their wives to be the ideal house wife that cooks, cleans and say yes to the husband's every needs without question. Of course real women aren't like that so why not make robots that are based off of their own wives. Dale Coba, also known as Diz, who is the villain of the film, gave the reason why the men are turning the women into the perfect wives, it is because they can. They have the power, the technologies so they used that to their own benefit. I think their plan of turning their wives into something more perfect is a good plan that went out of hand, instead of making their own wife from scratch, why not use the one they already have as their template.
There are some warnings to show that Stepford isn't all that it's seems. First would be Joanna's husband talking to his neighbor on the same day the two of them moved to Stepford. Another warning would also be when Carol, one of the Stepford Wives, started to repeat herself when talking about a recipes she must have. However to me the biggest warning is near the beginning when Joanna's husband is drunk and keeps telling her that he loves her.
When I see the wives in the film they all look too happy, so happy that it's frightening. Caring about cleaning more then anything else. And to add that they are robots increase the fear, that we are servants to technology. It takes use that one step closer when humanity will be obsoleat and the machine will rise. Sorry for sounding like conspiracy nut but that what it feels to me. However at the very end of the film we see all the wives in a shopping mall and they all look emotionless only when gretting one another is when they put on a smile. It shows the men are sad to think they gave up their real wives for poor replicas, and only being with these version they will be happy.
Stepford Wives really show's a different view on the world. Treating it as an unhappy place, that only making their own perfect partners is when they are truly happy.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Repulsion Review

Today I will be reviewing Repulsion (1965)

The film is about the main character Carol, who at first glance, is a shy and timid woman, but later on we learn she that she is struggling with her sanity. Everyone around her knows something is wrong with her but she doesn't say anything. Carol just tries to carry on with her life knowing that she is not right mentally. Suddenly when Carol's sister went on a vacation with her boyfriend, she is then left alone in the flat. That is when her sanity takes a turn for the worst. Carlo is then hallucination about cracks on the walls, hands coming out from the walls, a man who keeps raping her when shes in bed and later she develop, what I think, is another personality.
To me this film is not much horror but more of a type of mystery drama. Wondering why Carol is so distant from everyone, especially men.
Repulsion uses a lot of objects to represent Carol's sanity. The dead rabbit for example. When Carlo left it out of the fridge for too long it started to rot away, which is happening to her sanity. Another are the potatoes, their roots are growing and the potatoes are also dying, maybe to so that Carol is slowly slipping away while something else is growing inside her. But the one main object that reflects her the most is the flat she lives in. Everything that's happening in the flat represents how her mind is changing. It starts off nice and clean and ends up a total wreak.
Besides the objects that represent Carol's sanity, there are also some signs that talks about her history also. First lets look at the raping, it is obviously someone she knows, but who is he? Is a relative? A man who made believe he is her friend but isn't? could be someone close? And so on. The hands that grow from the walls could be the hands of the rapist. And the picture at the end has a young Carol looking at her farther with such disgust, could he have anything to do with Carol's mental state? All of this gives the film that mystery atmosphere, trying to uncover the history of Carol's life and to understand her a bit more.
What I like most about the film is how Carols Hallucination around the flat treats it like it is haunted. Like the house is alive and it is mimicking the helpless Carol's state of mind to the point of insanity.
I really like the use of effects around the flat, mostly the growing cracks on the walls and the hands the comes out from them. The story is good also, it has a weird effect, treating the world like it is normal but not normal at the same time.
Repulsion is defiantly a different film. It felt like a biography of a victim who suffers from sexual repression and soon loses her mind to the point of insanity.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Environment art 7: Reference images

I have gathered some Images to help me come up with a better idea for my final picture. I chose a bedroom because I think mirrors are mainly placed in the bedroom. And the way they are placed it's like eyes are watching the home owners sleep or more. Also if they are placed in a way of reflecting a window, the mirror will then end up watching use, keeping record of what we are doing outside. The setting I chose is of the 1960's, because I felt the 60's were a bit more colourful.

The first two images were the different designs of a mirror, first one has petals while the second one has an arm. The second image seems more interesting because of the arm that is attach to it. By moving it around the reflection in the mirror changes.

The next set are of the refelections that comes of the mirrors. Once again the second image Is a bit more interesting because the beackground of the image is white but the reflection has alot of content inside it.

The next set are of the different type of bedrooms. Although number four seems to take place in a bathroom. What I like about number four is how there are so many mirrors on one side of the room reflecting the other side of the bathroom.

The forth set Are of wallpaper except the last one, it is a window design of a wall paper. I actually like the first one and the last one they both have very interesting pattens

Environment art 6: Mirrors sketches

For the past few weeks I was still coming up with the design of my mirror for my final picture. The type of mirror I want for my picture is a simple yet interesting mirror, maybe stylize the frame around the mirror.

The first sketch was to make a type of fancy texture. I got this idea from the image at the bottom. I also did a tiny sketch of what type of mirror I want.

The second image is one of the scenes I thought up for my picture. The idea of it is to show the mirror as a type of portal to a nightmareish reflection of a nice looking room. The center line is the mirror from it's side

The next two images are designs from my mirror. I like the second one because it has some textures around it.

The fifth sketch is of the referecne image at the bottom that I found on the internet. While the last sketch is just a perspective drawing. To see what effect the picture will have from a different angle.

Halloween (1978) review

Today I have watched John Carpenter's Halloween (1978),

and it is nothing what I imagine. When I hear people talking about Carpenter's Halloween I thought it was scary with a lot of gore. I got the scary right but not the gore.
The story of the film was about a mental patient name Micheal Myers escaping from an asylum and returning to his home town in Haddonfield, Illinois. While there he started to stalk a group of girls and began to murder them one by one.
Going back to what I said, I thought this film was going to have a lot of gore and blood. But the film mainly focus on the stalking then the killing. I believe the reason for this is to show that serial killers plan their murders before the start them. And I have to say that was different to me, and the film also did things which were more realistic. A good example was the phone call scene, when Michael Myers was outside one of the girls houses and leaves, the phone rang and the Laurie Strode, portrayed by Jamie Lee Curtis, picked it up, there was no noise and Laurie hanged up, few seconds later the phone rings and Laurie picked up again and it turned out to be on of her friends how was playing a prank on her. Usually the killer does the phone ringing so I was quite pleased the film removed the cliche.
What I really like about the film was the scenery, everywhere I look there are lots of buildings and cars, but there's practically no one there, it looks like a ghost town with a very small population of people living there.
But what I think made this film a big success was the surrealness of Micheal Myers.
He is very agile and super strong. Not to forget his invulnerability, He gets stabbed in the neck by a knitting needle, poked in the eye by a clothes hanger, stab in the gut by his own knife, shot at by his psychiatrist and fell though a window. I don't know if him falling out of the window did him in but more or less he can sure take a lot of punishment.
All I have to say is, this film real is different from the other horror films I am used to and I am glad I experiance this.

Photoshop Lessons texture and perspective drawings.

For the past few weeks I learnt how to make a texture tile and make a picture from a different perspective.
First was the texture tile. The purpose of the a texture tile was to make a continuous texture on an object or model. The texture tile I had made was the brick texture.

The steps I took in making my brick tile was first select a piece from a the picture and crop it. Next clean it up with the clone tool to get it ready to be offset. Offset is used to bring the edges in the picture into the center. Once that was done, I use the clone tool in the center of the offset so it looks natural. Here's an example of the offset without using the clone tool to make it look neat and natural.

Next was making a picture using the free transformation tool: perspectives.
The tool was quite tricky to use at first but I soon got the hang of it. The tricky part was getting the right perspective. I use this as an opportunity to seen what my mirror scene would look like from a different perspective. The idea of my picture was to make a room next to a big mirror, but in the reflection was a completely different room.

This was just an experiment to see what my picture would look like from a different angle. I also had some assistance from the measurement tool and making my own lines of perspectives. To make the lines of perspective I first had to make a couple of lines going a cross the page and put a selected box are them then use the free transform tool: perspective, and set up the perspective of the lines.
I feel these tools will help soon when making my final piece.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Mirrors as a Portal to the Spirit World 2

To further my research on the use of mirrors as a type of gateway to the spirit world I have watched the film Mirrors, 2008.

It is a remake on the 2003 Korean film Into the Mirror. And I notice that the film has some noticeable features that resembled other films I have watched.
The mirrors in this film are used as a tool to trap the spirit, but it backfired. By trapping the spirit all the people who have mirrors are in danger.
When the film started it had the main character, Ben Carson portrayed by Kiefer Sutherland, starting his new job as a security guard of a burned down shopping mall. But while he was patrolling the building the mirrors then started to harass him by sending frightening images like people who are burning, hand prints that are done from the inside of a mirror and doors which are open in the mirror but are actually closed. The way the mirrors are harassing the main character is like how the house in the Haunting, 1963, harass the people who where living inside it. The film even have mannequins which I believe it was meant to give an uneasiness feeling like there some there but there is no one. While watching the film I also noticed that the film has three parts in it. The first part had Ben Carson in the burnt down shopping mall by himself, the second half had a race against time trying to find the person the mirrors were looking for before his family gets killed and the third part has him fighting a possessed nun. The last part sounds crazy but the mirrors wanted the nun because the mirrors are actually demons and she was their vessel.
This film had too many things going on but it was done in a gentle pace.
The only thing that bothered me was when the nun told the main character to leave her in the room where the demons left her body and went in to the mirrors and she is doing this for the Ben's family, yet when Ben first found her she didn't wanted to help. Only at gun point she decided to help.
This film was alright but it wasn't too interesting. It felt like I was watching the remake of the Haunting, but only the mirrors are moving and it didn't have anything too stupid.
Maybe next time I will watch the Korean film Into the Mirrors and maybe do a comparision between the two.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Mirrors as portals to the Spirit world

When I was looking at mirrors, Phil gave a list of films that that uses mirrors as a type of gate way to the spirit world.

The first film is Dead of Night: Mirror.

The story was about a wife who buys a mirror for her and husband's bedroom. but when every the husband looks into the mirror, he sees a different bedroom. Soon he is then possesed by an evil spirit.

When I watched this film the only thing that happened is that the mirror only shows a different bedroom, but when I learnt that the mirror belonged to someone angry and it carried the anger inside. The mirror has then became a lot more interesting. To know that a mirror can also capture the essence of it preious own and transfer it to someone else is actually very interesting.

Another film I watched was The Candyman.

Candyman is about a teacher from a university, investigating the legend about Candyman. I watched the film because it involves mirrors. The mirrors are used as a type of summoning tool, to call Candyman by saying his name five time in front of a mirror. Once he is summoned he then kills the person that last summoned him. At least that's what the legend says.
This film is all about learning the history of Candyman, although I don't think anyone mentioned why he was named Candyman, but we do find out who he is and what happen to him.
The film seems to borrow the mirror idea from a very old legend, Bloody Mary. To summoned her you need to say her name three times and she will kill the last person that called her.
What else I like about Candyman is they way started as an investigation to the Candyman legend. To give me more infomation on who is Candyman. I have to admit making the legend real was a bit disapointing, because then it ends up being a type of slasher. I like slashers but sometimes the film makers use them to make the film look cool, while actually they end up being stupid.

The only thing the two films has in common is that they make use belivev the main characters, the husband and the teacher, are crazy. And the both of them blames it on one thing, for the husband the mirror, for the teacher Candyman.

It either shows that both of them are crazy or the legends or the cursed mirror are real. One thing for sure, mirrors are not just things on a wall. They can be used for something much worse.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Environment Art 5: Mirrors

I did some sketches yesturday and today.
The first batch of sketches are a mix between yesturday and today drawings. I was coming up with some ideas on how I should make my mirror environment.

The first image was just a rough sketch of the picture where the girl is looking at herself in a mirror. I just like the idea of how the human mind sees itself when confronted with their own reflection.

The othere sketches where some ideas of the layout for my environment picture.
The very last sketch show's the reflection of a vase and each reflection show's how it was made and what will the outcome will be in the future.
My idea was to use the mirrors to reflect on how the object sees itself through age.

This next sketch was made today when I was flipping thought a bokk I borrowed from the libary. I just like the idea of how the mirror is depicted as an endless tunnel.