So this is how the model for my final box looks. I’m really glad I added the light, because it looks a lot better now. Also the interactiveness is something I wanted right from the beginning. The ice doesn’t look exactly how I wanted it, but I’m still fairly happy.
This box is supposed to be the climax of the narrative, and it’s the first one that shows an outright conflict. The gates of Dis in the last box, is to separate passive transgressions and active transgressions. And I think that the difference between them, is the inclusion of the Superego. If I get time, I want to animate these guys, I think it’d look really cool.
Also, here’s a better picture of my Gluttony box;
I wasn’t very happy with what I’d created for my styx layer. It was ok in composition and colour, and I’d liked the boat and the character, but the background had been way too flat and light, and the stalagmites weren’t brilliant. I’d experimented with using silicon sealant to make them, hoping that they would let light through and look ghostly, but they didn’t. In this one I have instead used papier mache to make the stalagmites bigger and as if they are connected to the ceiling (I believe they are called pillars when a stalagmite and stalactite connect). I think it looks a lot grander. I also papier mached the back, and used acrylic paint instead of water colour to get a more solid layer. I think there’s a lot more depth to this gif, and I much prefer the colours and how the water moves when his rowing stick (?) goes through the hair gel (that’s what the water is made out of). I also am very proud of the way the light reflects off the water. I hope people notice it.
But how does this fit within the story, the rest of the boxes, and the concept of the subconscious? This section of the story is supposed to represent the journey through the brain, the exploration of the subconscious that Freud was so intrigued by. The light at the front at the boat is both the illumination of knowledge, and also the supposed purity of the Super Ego.
I like to think about what Freud would see if he saw this gif. He would probably comment on the phallic imagery of the staff and the pillars. And also perhaps the shapes in the background and placement of the farthest stalactite.
After a talk with Amelia I decided that I should have lights in the boxes with models in. A lot of my work is about the strong contrast of light and shadow, and the models speak best when they are lit dramatically. I had some buttons that were threaded with a nut at the back so that they could screw into a hole, so I drilled some holes in my boxes (really carefully as the models were already glued down!), and wired some LEDs in. The battery packs and light bulbs will be hidden by a frame around the sides of the box, that also serves the purpose of hiding the scenes within, unless you are looking into them.
I wasn’t sure how these boxes were going to turn out, but I’m fairly happy with how they look. I like the fact that they were 3D, then they were 2D, and now they’re almost 3D again.
This one is for the ANGER layer. It’s supposed to represent the gate to Dis, the inner circle of hell, where the active sins are separated from the passive sins. In the poem, the souls fight each other in the swampy water of the river. I’ve instead pictured them reaching out of the mud, as if they’ve been sucked down, to represent the superego reaching for something more moral than the Id (the mud represents the id, as it it base, and dirty and of the earth). The door to the City of Dis is slightly ajar, to carry on the feeling of the viewer travelling through the boxes, and to add intrigue.
This is the box for ENTRANCE, the first box that you see. The camera gave some glare off the paper, it’s not really that shiny. The three animals are the three main components of the id, lust, violence,and hunger; the leopard, lioness, and wolf respectively. I tried to make the leopard look a bit slinky, and less scary than the others. The lioness has scratches as if she’s been fighting, and a claw up and the wolf has a visible ribcage.
Virgil is there beckoning the viewer into the gate, another way of connecting the boxes together.
This is the last week that we have for finishing work. And it’s been such a hassle. It’s been really stressful and I’ve been feeling as if my work is not of good enough quality to display.
I spent a lot of my time trying to figure out laser cutting the boxes so that an iPad would fit in there, and they would still be a good size for the models. I made them with finger joints that I’m quite proud I managed to figure out on Indesign.
These are some pictures of the boxes as they were a few days ago. The black boxes are for the iPads. They have holes in the side for the wires, and I will make some frames to cover up the sides of the iPads. I’m hoping that the colours are going to all work together.
This is the animation I made for the part of the story where Dante and Virgil travel across the River Styx, and into hell.
I’ve tried again to subtly incorporate the shape of neutrons, hopefully along with the water, it looks a bit like he’s travelling through a brain. I didn’t include Dante in this scene, even though he is present in the boat. I wanted the viewer to feel like they were Dante. Dante very much takes on the role of spectator and judge in the poem, and I want the viewer to feel the same.
The lantern is also present because it hopefully it helps to paint the picture of the superego as a kind of moral force, trying to control the less moral urges of the subconscious.
This part of the story is really about delving into a journey.
This gif is to represent the FRAUD level of hell in Dante’s Inferno. I think I might redo it. I do like the set, and how the feet are moving, but I also think that it could be a little better. If I get time to re do it, I would change the lighting, how Bertrand is holding the head, the mud around the feet, and the stance of the body.
The man holding his own head is called Bertran de Born in the poem. Bertran is singled out by Dante as having a punishment that particularly mirrors the sin. He caused a rift between the King and his son, and as that relationship was divided, so now is he. This goes back to the cautionary tales that I looked at in the first and second term, and also speaks of how the subconscious is also split.
Again, feet, hands, and head are key to this image, but also cut off. They seem to be swallowed by the scenery. Submerged, fighting against the id.
I’ve finally gotten started making things to go into the boxes. I’m going to make the gifs first, because I’m worried about them the most time-wise. Here I’ve got the gifs for HERETICS and LUST.
For the HERETICS level of hell, Dante and Virgil come across fiery graves that the heretics emerge from and tell them their stories. When I looked up past depictions of this scene they seemed more like crypts that graves, and I decided to show them how I imagine classic gothic graves. I’ve also just included hands because I wanted to have the feeling of hidden things emerging through all of the images. Also the white hands reaching upwards out of the dirt are meant to symbolise the Superego reaching to overcome the Id. For me, hands, feet, and heads are of the superego, and the body is of the Id, because hands and feet and mind are a kind of symbol of our intelligence and separation from animal, whereas the rest of us holds the heart and stomach and reproductive organs that operate on the level of the subconscious.
You wouldn’t think that the second one would symbolise LUST, but I thought about how I wanted to portray it, and I decided on this. I hate that lust is always represented by a seductive woman all in red, why not a lecherous old man? And I didn’t want to represent the act of lust anyway, I wanted to represent the punishment that would fit it according to Dante. Dante describes for this level of hell, a hurricane of souls, and that is what I’ve tried to show. I think a hurricane of souls well represents the feeling of lust, as consciousness is swept aside for the desire of the Id.
I really struggled to incorporate the Tantalus part into my animation. I knew what I wanted, but in practice it just didn’t want to work. I thought about mounting the hand to some wood, and attaching string, but that would mean I’d have to have a whole support structure around the scene. And I thought about how to do it coming out of water, if it should be hair gel, like I used in the Cthulhu scene, or if it should be just a bucket of water.
I also thought about if it should be upright, or on its side. In the end I decided on just lying it flat and photographing it from above, as it is much easier, especially if you want to do it quickly. I learnt this last year doing the TED Talks project.
I really couldn’t figure it out, and when I got round to giving it a go, the method I used didn’t work, and I chose to cut the animation short. I think I was just too ambitious this time.
Anyway, I have a shorter animation that I’m still fairly proud of.
I think that the falling needed to happen quicker, and there was an issue with zooming in without focusing, but I like how it looks, and I think it incorporates the themes I wanted to talk about, like the link between power and consuming, and the obsession we have with both. I think these are very prevalent in our society today, as the power is not so much with the consumer anymore. But there are a lot of stories that bestow a lot of power in the act of consumption, almost like a sort of show of dominance or defiance.
What I find really interesting about the story I’m looking at at the moment is that it is very ironic, in that the girl is punished for being greedy and glutinous, by herself being eaten. It related back to my idea to question the scaremongering that we see in the media, and reflect it back on ourselves. Can we really talk about childhood obesity without first looking at ourselves, and the people that created that environment for them?
So with this in mind, I’ve taken the idea that I had yesterday, with the arms coming out of the wolf’s mouth, and created images of a “wolf” coming out of a girl’s mouth (only I’ve been a little less literal).
I thought about the things I’ve been looking at in my dissertation, like the idea of hair and skin and textures being about the show the difference between the glamorous and the grotesque. This is kind of what I wanted to get across in this piece. A lot of old fairy tales and cautionary tales have pretty young girl protagonists, because if they weren’t, it would be more difficult to feel sorry for them I guess.
I think that over all, the still image worked better than the animation. Maybe the animation could work if I planned it a little more, and maybe had more movement in the face for example.