Sunday, February 28, 2010

Joanna Mowbray

This morning we had a lecture from a sculpture artist who mainly creates her work using steel. The main focus of the majority of her work seems to consist of the differences between light and dark and how different times of day and seasons affect the look of her work. I like the organic, natural nature of her work mixed with the harshness of the made made materials. I think that this creates a nice contrast and allows her work to be separated from other artists. Some of her main influences have been Eva Hesse and Robert Smith. When looking at their work you can instantly see similarities in her work and theirs but i think she has taken her ideas a step forward and created something totally unique. I particularly like her approach to design. She works spontaneously and with very little direction. She sets herself a goal and brief but the actual design process is a very fluid one which takes any direction she sees appropriate to go in. I like to take a similar design approach to my work by giving myself a brief and a deadline but whatever happens in between is undecided and its only when my work starts to take life that i can start to feel how the level with look and what it will contain.

A reoccurring theme that seems to be popping up in the Friday contextual lectures that we have been having is the idea that most of the artists and designers seem to find themselves looping back to the same work after a certain period of time. Because the game industry is still quite young compared to most other design disciplines its hard to analyse whether looping themes would apply to us as game designers, however i feel that it would not. The main reason for this is because i feel technology is advancing so fast that it does not give us the breath to loop back on ourselves and that changes games dramatically. People may argue that its the core of the game that really counts and the same design ideas are still being used now that were used in old arcade games, and this is true to some extent, but i feel now large game companies focus on technology rather than ideas. I see the same ideas being used over and over again being worn thin, so you could also argue the ideas never really go away and come back but rather stay the same and take a different form. Big companies would much rather have a beautiful looking game that sell millions of units with tired and used game designs rather than have a unique and challenging game which would only appear to a select market of gamers and not make as much money. This means that any chance of coming back to core ideas to take a fresh approach years after creating them goes out of the window with multi-million unit selling companies and huge advances in technology.

There are also similarities behind both of our disciplines in the way that we create interactive art work. Joanna likes to create sculptures that people can interact with and walk around experiencing different emotions from different angles rather than if it was stationary. The interactive element of the design definitely interests me more than any others and taking the hands on approach using welding equipment and bolts helps you to connect and appreciate the work more knowing how long they took making the piece. Although there is no real conclusion to make about this blog its a good way to see how Joanna's work flow was used to create such individual and unique pieces and how her work flourishes from the spontaneity that she allows herself.

1 comment:

  1. I think in many ways the games industry HAS begun to see circular trends; although I completely agree about increasing focus on technology rather than ideas (many many big budget games wowing everyone with flash and spectacle rather than steps forward in design and gameplay) there has also been a revival of simple arcade experiences and "dead genres" like point and click thanks to the rise of platforms like the iphone, cheap digital distribution services like Steam, and open services like XBox Live Arcade.

    "Bedroom coding" was once dead, but now there are many vibrant oppurtunities for small indie companies making smaller simple titles driven by new ideas rather than budget and spectacle, which IMO is a return to the industrys beginnings, the first real sign of the industry looping back on itself.

    Nice entry though Pete! Quite a contrast to Kaile's lecture review style lol