You may have noticed that whilst I am primarily a techie I do like to dabble and explore the potential of art with technology. I am well aware though, and often have to explain, that I am not a graphic designer or an artist. My creative toolkit is code and components. It may even be considered unusual combination of applications in a sort of collage of code. Nearly everything needs some sort of interface though. I am constantly frustrated that my vision of what something should look like is often not quite what I manage to achieve with the tools I have to hand. However, I have often thought that with a limited number of pixels on a screen and a pallete of colours with enough time and effort it must be possible to make something close to perfect as an image. Of course the key there is time. It is really just a rewrite of the concept of an infinite number of monkeys and typewriters generating the complete works of Shakespeare!.
I was struck, this week, by an ipad painted image of Morgan Freeman that was doing the rounds of social media. I had only seen the finished image. Whilst everything was saying it was a painting it seemed just too good. So I was amazed but skeptical. Then last night I the video below showing the stages of the painting captured as it happened. This is truly stunning.
It is the work of Kyle Lambert and looking at his portfolio it is hard not to feel that he has reached a level that very few other people ever will. What is great though is a link to a lot of tutorials he has created and various articles so he is not keeping this talent to himself.
I would have though a picture of the quality of Morgan Freeman would have put me off even ever trying but instead I am more inspired to learn more about artistic techniques now and try and level up my coder art just a little bit.
Even tools like Forza 5 let us express ourselves artistically through the media of the automobile. The tools (as in previous Forza’s are a decal based approach, similar to Second Life prims that you have to shape and skew, layering up to create the look you want.
I have now upgraded my feeding edge logo and predator face a bit more and my flagship car (which was the Ferrari 430 is now the LaFerrari The predator mask has always worked well (IMHO) on cars with front scoops like the subaru Impreza.
However the LaFerrari has a brilliant cut out front that is even better. The back of the car has hardly any surface so I popped on a very small Feeding Edge logo under the Ferrari logo.
Ok so it’s not a 200 hour Morgan Freeman ipad painting but its a start 🙂
My feeds today led me to look at a brilliant YouTube video that is over on New World Notes called Impressions by Willow Caldera. This video is wonderfully shot and shows a the very creative and expressive side of Second Life. It acts as a reminder (probably to those of us who preach about “business use” or who are starting to finally grok it all that there is much much more to all this than a bit of powerpoint and some business dressed avatars. I would recommend popping over to NWN and taking a look.
In following the links I saw this video too on the same channel about the U2inSL Warchild benefit gig.
U2 are back in the news again for using Youtube themselves (as opposed to this U2inSL who are a tribute act). However I still always manage to get U2inSL into any explanation of what this is all about.
There are several reasons for this.
1. Most people know who U2 are they are both part of the establishment and known innovators.
2. People listen to music all the time on the Radio, Ipods etc.
3. Bono is particularly known for charity work too.
Each of those have a way to reach people who don’t yet understand why we are all harping on about virtual worlds. Love or hate U2 it acts as personal conversation rather than a business one.
What happens at the concerts (as you can see from the video) is effectively a tribute act puppet show/impersonation. Yet it also has a crowd of people willing to watch listen and feel part of it. They are all passionate U2 fans, and they have gathered together to raise some real money for charity by collectively listening to their favourite tunes together.
Underlying all that we of course end up with copyright and image rights conversations, but in the case of U2inSL this really is a passionate fan base enjoying feel connected rather than someone making fake gucci bags for a quick buck.
As many of us keep pointing out, engaging and supporting these passionate fans whether you are a band, an author, a manufacturer of widgets is the key to the world today. Where those people happen to be and the way they are choosing to interact with one another is where you need to be joining in. Not a huge capital investment, not masses of PR and spin but just good old fashioned human to human conversation. Twitter, SL, Facebook…. whatever comes next, you just have to be there.
AnnieOK just tweeted a link to this kinetic sketch web application. Its a Flash based application that the brushes are objects that are responding to one another and acting as physical simulations. i.e. a round brush rolls and square one will tip from its corner. In addition to simple physics like gravity there are lots of creativity settings for the trails that are left behind. You can even use live video (though on my Mac I had to tell flash to use the USB video class (a right click on the background and quick menu select in settings to sort that out) in order to get me as a brush. You can then post to multiple places such as I did here with going straight to Flickr (so its suitably social media aware as to be useful too 🙂 )
I still find the most basic of physics simulations interesting, as they used to be the things I wrote with my first computer (a ZX81) intertia, collisions and gravity even just in 2D have an organic feel to them. This though takes that even further with the painting aspects leaving a digital echo of the physical movements. Wonderful stuff IMHO.
I did a little extra with it that was not camera based.
It started to remind me of the recent Tate Modern show on the futurists that I went too.
It is interesting what those talented and revolutionary artists may have done back in 1911 with the technology we have today.
It also reminded me I had not blogged about the wonderful sculpture that I did not get a photo or postcard of by Umberto Boccioni (who also did the running man above) entitled “Development of a bottle in space”
This was a very striking piece but also one that looked more like prim twisting in Second Life than anything else I had seen.