Monday, February 26, 2018

the GIFt that keeps on GIFing

i'll be honest - i thought GIFs merely existed to serve as reactions and responses on social media (in particular, more than just cats making funny faces). i never really thought about them outside of their purpose for humor, nor did i think of them as anything merely than just a loop of a person/animal/object doing something. i would've never put the words "art" and "GIF" in the same sentence, or realize that even a loading bar is technically a GIF. that being said, i've enjoyed looking at GIFs from a more objective standpoint - looking at what they are and can do, besides just making us smirk on the internet.

Related image
Exhibit A of what we all really thought a GIF was meant for.
additionally, i think my favorite part is how GIFs can transform into little pieces of digital art by layering them with artistic touches. when we looked at Giphy for the short time we were in class last week, i think a lot of us were delighted to find out that the site had added stickers, filters, and text effects. you can even draw on them! i think that takes GIFs to a whole new level. for example, while browsing the tumblr of Museum GIFs, i found one that utilizes both filters & animated drawing to create a new piece of art from, well, art.

I wish they could project those lines onto the real thing! Imagine how that would look!
while that is a lovely GIF, i was inspired to make my own mini work of digital art through the power of Giphy for this week's Make...i maaaay have gotten a little carried away with the filters and range of stickers. with that being said, it's a good thing art is subjective.

Gee, I wonder what this GIF is trying to say to the world... I guess we'll never know.
i also made another GIF to express the one universal flaw in what would otherwise be a perfect concept:

The struggle is real.
no matter what GIFs are used for, they sure are fun! whether you use them for memes, art, to tell a story, capture a looping moment of beauty, or what have you, they're an easy and great mode of expression! to add, there are a plethora of sites that help you create your perfect GIF and share it with the virtual world. GIF us more, please~!

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

did somebody mention ART

 at times like these, i can only be reminded of Kelli's love for that picture from the Iron Giant of Dean going "ART." I mean, what is ART, anyways? even worse, what's digital art??? who even knows!

unrelated, my second thought is this video:

anyways, back to ART! art has always been subjective and i think to answer the question "what is art" will take literally a lifetime (and then some). however, i think we can define what makes something digital art. traditionally, i think we all think of digital art are things that are created using digital tools & programs, like WACOM tablets and PhotoShop. while that is definitely digital art, other examples expand outside of our "typical" view as well.

Bob the Drag Queen teaching the children about what REALLY matters.
photo manipulation is a big contender a lot of people forget about. there's a lot that goes into cutting and pasting certain selections, layering, juxtaposing images, and messing with hues, lighting, and other artistic elements to create harmony in a piece. there's also flash animation, where people take their digital drawings and add frames of movement to create a moment of animation (much like a GIF, which are also arguably digital art!) along with animation, video editing to can be a form of digital art. on YouTube, people like to take clips or fanart of shows and masterfully put them to music (AMVs / MMVs), and often use the same tools as photo manipulation. there's a lot of layering and filters going on, as well as the artistic challenge of musicality to create a few minutes of digital art.

also don't forget about memes and, as i said, GIFS! also very valid in terms of art, because why not? it is subjective, after all :P for example, here's some art i made this week:

alright, maybe it's not as good as some art, but hey, it is art. and just because i'm in a "giving" mood, i'll share with you some digital art i've created myself. they're of an old character of mine from a game I used to play all the way from 2004. i got back into the game again last year, and that's when i created these. i'll share some older art, too!

Made in GIMP with a WACOM drawing tablet.

Created using Furcadia's FOX pixel editor.
And now for your entertainment, really old art I'm going to pull from a deviantART account from five+ years ago (i'm cringing RIP me).

but, the whole point: as you can see, digital art can look very different, like traditional art! there are different mediums of artistic expression, both online and in physical form, but it's up to the artist on how they want to express themselves. i also want to note the accessibility of digital art: it does offer, usually, a more affordable way of creating art, instead of constantly buying paints & fancy copic markers. however, tablets and software (if you want to actually buy PhotoShop and not use its free sister programs) can get a bit pricey, but they're usually a one-time buy. also, not everyone has a computer to use to create it, so there's that. just a little food for thought.

unrelated, but i'll also share it here, is my SelfieUnselfie! i don't know how to artistically weave this into my blog post, so i'm just gonna go ahead and show ya:

Monday, February 12, 2018

who needs JOBS when u have SELFIES and MEMES, said every millennial ever

i'd be lying if i said i wasn't excited for this week's class. last class proved to be engaging, both in conversation and creation, as we explored memes. tomorrow, we get to take on the selfie culture. the real reason i'm looking forward to the discussion is because this is the culture my peers have created with the technology we've been given - i want to hear what people have to say about these forms of expression in a more academic sense. in the meantime, i'll give you my take on it -

memes. truly, they're works of art - and, at times, i'd argue they are some of the most pure forms of human connection we have today. maybe you think i'm over-exaggerating, but what's a better way to try and connect with someone than having a funny picture with an overly relatable  caption on it? especially if said picture features, say, an adorable kitten. needless to say, memes are something are typically accessible (if one has internet / smartphone), and something that everyone can make and contribute to the world. however, like we said before, you do need to understand context when meme-making. that is, you need context of human self-awareness, the world around you, and context of the meme itself.

with that being said, i'm gonna dump some memes i made for our wonderful class (including the above image). all were for the self-aware memes for the Makes we did.

i can't say i have a personal favorite meme, but i'll use some drag race ones to get some more #NetNarr memes out there (you're welcome.)

(just some light shade :P i'm only jokin')

anyways, i'll stop with the memes (for now). moving on to the next hot topic - selfies.

i'll keep my piece on selfies short, because that conversation can be a bottomless barrel. what i didn't like was that none of the articles addressed how selfie culture is affecting everyone, including guys. somehow, all the journalists i guess forgot that men like to take pictures of themselves and are just as "vain" that they think teenager girls all.

can selfies be empowering? of course they can be, but it shouldn't be judged on the fact if you're a Marine or a 13-year-old girl. if it's empowering to the individual (subjectively), then let them take the pictures and post them online. you don't know if the 13 year old is posting it because she feels nice in a picture and wants to share it (not for validation, but for her own personal terms) - hell, maybe the Marine is the one posting the picture for validation of  "doing something great" above others. the basic gist of this is we don't know why people are posting. sure, of course, people post because they're dependent on getting likes and hearts and all that from their peers in an effort to perform their most perfect life on social media. that, for sure, is a big problem - but only the individual can come to terms with that. only they can reach a level of self-awareness where they can realize what is dictating them to share so much of themselves online. but hey, it's not your life, so stop commenting on it. also, be fair - don't just blame selfie culture on young girls. move the conversation to how it also affects young boys, too, if you're so keen on talking about it.

some people like taking selfies because it's an expression of art - and why not? people from 15th century europe had grand paintings of themselves created, and we look back and consider it "art." so why not a picture? again, art itself is a broad and subjective concept - people will like & dislike it, you can't please everyone, but screw `em. in the spirit of this week's class, i took some selfies as well. i don't enjoy taking pictures of just myself (i like it when other people in my pictures! but hey, that's my own personal and mental struggle of sorts). if i do share pictures of just myself, it's because i feel very good about myself, & that there's an aesthetic to the picture. i either like my makeup, the lighting, or a combination of other artistic elements that seem to present themselves in the pictures. for example, theses selfies i took for this particular blog post are an expression of experimenting with this fake nose ring and darker, grungier makeup. i enjoyed taking them, but it took quite a lot of shots! i hate smiling for pictures, but i love looking like a moody bitch. i had two i really liked, so i put them together in GIMP, flipped one of them, and created "art." enjoy, yall.

final words: let people be people!!! life is short, make some memes, take some pictures, and just try to be nice to others.