Sound to Light

I enjoyed using sound within Feminist Poem [Extended] Audio and all the audio work leading up to Year 2 Spring Exhibition. I was particularly pleased with the way in which you could not visually see the work, but it created an invisible sculpture. I wanted to move away from such a sound-heavy piece, to having parts of the work available to view. This is not the large juxtaposition between Pole Performance and Feminist Poem 3 Audio, 4 Speakers, however it still leaves some questioning for the viewer. Bringing back some of the visuals, I am still able to show the manipulation of space and movement, and also discomfort for the viewer.
Playing around with light, I wanted to create a moving sculpture of myself, that is perhaps only visible at split seconds. Through inspiration from Heather Cassils, and her work with large blocks of clay and the camera flash as the only part of the performance that is seen, I wanted to look at strobe lighting.
WARNING: the videos below contain flashing images. They have been identified to potentially trigger seizures for people with photosensitive epilepsy. Viewer discretion is advised.
Unfortunately, the cameras were unable to pick up some of the flashes, and only kept up with half of the flash for the majority of the time. It was very disorientating being on the pole while this was happening, but I managed to position the strobe light so that it did not directly point at me. One of the cameras that I used could not keep up with the darkening of the image and came up blurry.
I originally used a strobe light on the ‘iTorch’ app on my phone, as I thought this was relatively bright and also gave a stuttered strobe. This was not as bright as I thought it would be, even when standing in the room, and I was disappointed with the turnout of the video footage. I had in the background Feminist Poem 3 Audio, 4 Speakers in order to gather how long that I had been on the pole, however I was unsure as to whether to keep this audio in the background. These below are the original videos, and edits are to come.

I then moved onto using the strobe light, which was more effective and turned out brighter, which is what I wanted. As mentioned before, I felt somewhat disorientated when on the pole with this light, however it encompassed the room, which is what I wanted it to do.

I realised after capturing the Strobe DSCN Original footage that I had the pillar, and doorways in the background. This was unprofessional of me, however it did allow me to see the effect of the strobe light on the opposite side of my body. I re-captured the footage in the original position of the camera.

I also decided to have a faster strobe light as this may have created a different effect with further disorientation. This is primarily where the camera struggled, and you can only see the top half, and rarely the whole of my body. The strobe light itself was positioned just behind the camera, meaning there was no flash directly into the lens. However, it still struggled significantly.

I preferred the outcome of the slower strobe in Strobe 00 Original, Strobe DSCN Original and Strobe 2 DSCN Original. This is because there is much more mystery to the piece, and creates the effect similar to Heather Cassils; where you are unsure where the performance, and the performer are going to be next. With the movement around the space, and around the pole, it is easier to confuse the audience, or those who are watching the video. There is a small part of me that wants to add something else to this, as I feel as though it needs something more.
Instead of hanging up on the missing piece of the strobe pole pieces, I decided to play around with other effects and lighting, including that of black lighting, or UV. I wore a white top and shorts in order to capture the footage for this, and positioned two cameras in the room in order to see the effects of the UV light on my body and clothing. Again here, one of the cameras struggled with the lighting, and often appears blurry. Although this is annoying, I took it in my stride when editing.
I was inspired by the modesty and innocence of John Poppleton‘s paintings, and the use of black light by both Poppleton and Bogi Fabian. Fabian also heavily manipulates the space that she works in, somethings that I want to continue to concentrate on while using UV lights.
Within the first performance, I noticed that the UV lights were lighting up the right hand edge of the footage. It adds an eerie glow to the video and adds almost a supernatural vibe to the piece.

After realising the mistake of putting the UV light too close to the camera shot, I moved it to another plug socket in the room, and began filming again. Once again, one of the cameras struggled to focus on my body. I was enjoying the effects of the UV lighting on the body and clothing, and how it created another version of minimal viewing of a performance, or video.

I wanted to change things up a bit from the previous two performances and sets of videos. There was a certain pleasure to seeing the body and how this moved throughout the performance, however a key part of pole is the extremities. You hands and feet, along with your arms and legs, move around in order to create shapes and moves. These movements were not seen through the use of the top and the shorts, so I decided to put a piece of white cloth around my wrist, arm, ankle and foot, in order to capture these movements and to further manipulate a wider circumference of the space.

I enjoyed using both the UV lights and strobe light in order to create new effects on and off of the screen. There was a certain level of manipulation of space that was achieved, that I believe could not have been achieved by other means. By manipulating the lighting, I was able to control the parts that the audience and viewers see of my body, of the performance and of the space as a whole. I was also able to successfully create the middle ground between the visual juxtaposition between Pole Performance and Feminist Poem [Extended] Audio.

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