Be sure to click anywhere in the browser window and see what happens!
“A long overdue project”, you may say, but alas, here we are. When you arrive at MBS_RMS_NET-ART_COLLAB Feel free to click on the graphics in the collage windows as many a great surprise compositions await you! Enjoy the iterations!
This project begins in html but lets see how it develops! This project is completely generated in the “pass the buck” style.
As of 5/19/19 it is MBS’s turn to add to the html file, publish it on the Internet and then send it back to RMS for more additions!
“Every Conversation I Never Overheard” – a second iteration forward.
Ryan Seslow, 2019, Multiple Channel Animated Video.
I feel that physical scale plays a role in the development, impact and sharing of works like this. I always ask myself, can it hold up on Instagram, Youtube or a website? The answer is obviously yes, but asking the question helps me give it further contexts to look into. There is an old outdated version / part of me that can still recall past teachers and mentors instructing that I shouldn’t share this new “work in progress” on the web until after I have shown it in a more traditional public art space. (How limiting) Thankfully, that is not my idea but one that was constantly shared with me (and the others around me) for many years. I never took that advice. I’m happy about that. I’m sure that I missed hearing a lot of the reasons for why or why not, and that’s also a good thing.
“Every Conversation I Never Overheard” puts an emphasis on the overstimulating visuals that I experience in my daily soundless travels through transit in NYC. As my ability to wear and use hearing aids degenerates rapidly I have been spending more and more time not wearing them at all, especially when I am alone and in transit. The less I hear, the more I see, and the more I see the more I hear inside. (re-read that last stanza) I see in narratives that seem to splice themselves together into a continuous sequence of scrolling communication. This is a first attempt at bringing together the visual aspect of the sentiment and experience.
“The Multi-Self Channel Narrative” is Part 1 of a new multi-channel soundless Video Art narrative. This piece is set as the background for the additional layers as they develop. This piece was started on March 24th 2019 and created from various art historical images that can be found in open access and public domain resources. This video art work is a simulation of the resources and a visual example of the potential! (More to come on this soon, including a “how-to” tutorial)
“Graphic Design for Websites” is a workshop placing an emphasis on the basic elements and principles of graphic design in relationship to front end web design aesthetics. Students will be exposed to various examples and applications for wordpress based websites (on the CUNY academic commons and beyond). The workshop will also introduce and apply a myriad of Open Education Resources on design, techniques and software. Hands on exercises will be explored. Bring your laptop.
Welcome to the Graphic Design for Websites workshop!
Here we are, March 19th 2019 at the CUNY Graduate Center, NYC for the Digital Initiatives program!
Reminder #1 – Nothing is static.
Reminder #2 – Everything is default until we intervene, investigate, interact and define who we are in relationship to that thing.
Introductions – This presentation and workshop is a blog post! A URL! It was specifically organized, designed and published this way, which all takes place on website.
URL, please meet the in real-life workshop students and guests. In real-life workshop students and guests please meet the URL. This blog post will grow and expand, I greatly look forward to your additions, suggestions and comments!
“Graphic design, also known as communication design, is the art and practice of planning and projecting ideas and experiences with visual and textual content. The form it takes can be physical or virtual and can include images, words, or graphics. The experience can take place in an instant or over a long period of time. The work can happen at any scale, from the design of a single postage stamp to a national postal signage system. It can be intended for a small number of people, such as a one-off or limited-edition book or exhibition design, or can be seen by millions, as with the interlinked digital and physical content of an international news organization. It can also be for any purpose, whether commercial, educational, cultural, or political.” https://www.aiga.org/guide-whatisgraphicdesign
Question – After reading this definition, what is the first image that comes to your mind / attention?
What is Visual Literacy? The ability to recognize and understand ideas conveyed through visible actions or images, such as pictures. (according to)
Visual literacy is a skill. A visual literacy is the ability to both understand and produce visual messages. In today’s world of ever-expanding mass media it is becoming increasingly more important to understand. As almost all information and entertainment is acquired through non-print media, the ability to think critically and visually about the images and content presented becomes crucial.
Where is Graphic Design visually present?
Everywhere! Literally. All kinds of signs and symbols both digital and non, transportation, corporate identity and branding, all forms of packaging, printed materials, Internet / online content, websites, Ads, banners, blogs, e-books, album covers, news media, film and television titles, graphics of all kinds, fashion, clothing designs, art and so much more!
But wait, Are you a Designer? You’re all designing things each day, all day long, lets take a look into what this means..
How does design effect communication?
We must ask the question, what is the language of Design? One must identify and understand the Elements and Principles. The elements and principles are the design vocabulary – (Standard – the way it is defined in academic terms – versus – Customized – the way it is defined via each individual person)
*An exercise for later – Generate a series of images taken with your smart phone that visually define the elements and principles of design in public space. We are in NYC, so…design is everywhere, reaching us both consciously and unconsciously. However, we never see a “single design” or “a single building” we see it with in relationship to everything else that is around it. Gather your images and publish them into a blog post. Send your published URL to me no later than tomorrow at 8am. (Im kidding, at leisure)
Where is the attention of human beings these days?
Obviously, online. The Internet!
How does design play a role in the way that we use the Internet and websites for teaching, learning, creating new courses, sharing course work, assignments and generating discussions? What about the way we conduct research, shop, entertain ourselves and so on? Are you consuming more than creating? Is it possible to creatively consume?
What is Creativity?
Creativity is the action and ability to give tangible form to an idea, impulse or intuition. It can be a new idea, or it can be an extension of something that already exists. Creativity can change the context of something in a new and innovating way.
Creativity and being human are synonymous (even thought your ego can trick you into not believing this) Creativity’s desire is your human desire and need of physical expression.
What role does storytelling play in the application of design and websites?
It comes down to Intention. Conscious intention. How can we apply this? Where do we start?
Let’s chat about Contrast. Contrast is wonderful. But contrast can also be a great motivator of procrastination. Endlessly seeking more and more examples can equal less and less actual action. Anyone guilty of this?
What would you like to create? What would you like to make? How will you go about it? Are you willing to practice?
Process, Practice & Permission to be Experimental:
Here is your permission intervention. I hereby give you the permission to jump in! Its not at all uncommon to have MULTIPLE projects happening at once on the web. We all know this from the classes that we are taking and the classes that we may be teaching. (Im teaching 8 courses between 4 colleges and taking 2 courses for myself) From the projects we are a part of both individually and collaboratively, the more that we do, the more we realize that we can do. Sometimes “more” is simply being experimental! Its OK to use experimentation as the SUBJECT. Narrate and illustrate the process and observe how it organically takes form.
CUNY Academic Commons – Free for all CUNY teaching faculty and students – wordpress platform that functions as a social network with in the larger CUNY community as a whole. How can you not be a part of this?
Tumblr – Free and very customizable, lots of options.
WIX – Free and paid versions, also very customizable with a lot of options.
Projects as Websites, Websites as Projects, either way, its COMMUNICATION. Make it open, make it transparent.
Teaching NET-ART – Teach the Course(s) you have always wanted to teach! Create, design and build it! Your rules, your examples, your unique way of sharing. Im using the CUNY Academic Commons for this course.
Cross Campus Collaboration – My CUNY BMCC foundation Graphic Design course collaborated with my York college Digital Storytelling class to produce both an online and public example of collaboration. Our cross course ZINE was created in partnership and donated to the NYPL’s public ZINE collection and archive.
(Above – a graphic icon / logo remix created with the Assembly app for iOS mobile)
The Industry standard software / tools for graphic design is Adobe.
Adobe Photoshop & Adobe Illustrator are powerful tools that can be used to generate virtually anything visual. From all types of static images and graphics, to logos, icons and animations, to retouching and layout. Adobe offers monthly subscriptions for their software and if it is affordable on the end of the user, it should be applied and taken advantage of.
Additional Digital Art & Design Tools – This is a growing list and archive that has been building right here on this website. I encourage you to jump in, pick a new application or platform every few weeks and experiment!
Lets get to the DESIGN Making PART!
Lets assume that you do not have access to adobe photoshop, but you do have access to the internet, a web browser, and creativity that is pouring out of you!
Lets open pixlr and Design a logo, icon or symbol that communicates and or supports something that you are currently working on. A logo for your course or personal website? A hybrid graphic icon to express several things that you are interested in? I created the logo / graphic for this presentation at the top of the post using pixlr and icons from the noun project. I added the text in pixlr as well. I applied attribution to the creators via the Creative Commons policy.
Lets use pixlr again to generate a poster design that uses transparent graphic assets and text. I created a public folder here where you can access, download and the apply the graphics. Lets practice composing a picture using multiple elements. (Of course you can also discover and apply your own graphics!)
Save your work as a .jpg file and e-mail it to me! Rseslow@york.cuny.edu or Ryan (at) ryanseslow.com – I will build a gallery of workshop contributions below this sentence!
(((((COMING SOON in this SPACE – The WORKSHOP OUTCOMES!)))))
Open Education Resources – Courses to follow along with by Professor Seslow:
National Gallery of Art With the launch of NGA Images, the National Gallery of Art implements an open access policy for digital images of works of art that the Gallery believes to be in the public domain.
I love the immediacy of taking photos with my iPhone and using them directly as inspiration for new digital art works. The ability to shoot, capture and apply one’s own visual references in immediacy continues to fuel my desires as a media artist. In my latest new media project I have been playing with the idea of anonymity and how it can be expressed from the perspective of being deaf and hard of hearing in a large city. In this case NYC, where I spend a lot of my time. Even though one may find themselves surrounded by thousands of other people at all times constantly in motion, you may not find one familiar face in the sea of human beings. This of course does not mean that communication is not being made and or exercised. Communication comes in a different ways. Many many ways. Some of which can be totally taken for granted. Are you a hearing person with normal hearing? Perhaps on your next visit to NYC, LA or Chicago wear a pair of sound blocking earphones and walk through the busiest sections of the city through the eyes of the soundless. What new sensations will you take notice to? How will all things visual enhance and or become more pronounced? Where will your visual focus be with the removal of sound?
As a deaf and hard of hearing person I live between the world of battery operated digital synthetic amplified sound and no sound at all. Even when there is sound via hearing aids, in a big city like NYC, for me its mostly distortion and the over amplification of the things I would rather not hear, like sirens, and multiple other things competing in the same space. I have the choice to remove my hearing aids and often do so in these environments. To this day I still find it utterly perplexing that my brain functions this way. I often opt out of wearing hearing aids in certain areas to avoid distorted noises and the limitations of what hearing aids are supposed to do. I don’t mind experiencing my world soundless. Its not a limitation in my eyes, nor is it a “disability” like many refer to it as. When the void of sound is present another sense kicks in. I become acutely attuned to the vibration of people, objects and things. I can also activate this when I wear hearing aids but its a little harder to do and maintain. Especially when multiple synthetic sounds and vibrations are competing with each other while my brain is trying to convert them into comprehensible meaning. How does this all work? Im both fascinated, perplexed and inspired to attempt to explain it all.
The first piece in the series came from this photo I took while crossing the street in mid-town on the east side. Even when wearing hearing aids I miss a ton of sounds and words when trying to communicate in noisy environments, especially the city. I was never able to “overhear” our follow the conversations of other people anywhere. Hearing people are exposed to this all the time, especially in public space. You kind of have no choice to a degree. I often wonder what that is like? I could only read lips to a degree and watch the facial expressions and body language create patters of repetition. Over time this became both a visual language and an emotional one as well in and of itself. In a public space like NYC it makes what I witness visually an ongoing anonymous experience. The works below are manipulations and extensions that are derived from one single experience and one single image yet it represents so many of the others like it.. This is a metaphor and an expression of how this effects me on a sensory level. Its kind of like a paused, freeze-framed moment of ceaseless motion where some parts stop and some continue to move. I find beauty in these moments and can retain them in my mind’s eye.
The static frames above inspired the second phase of the project’s development, making videos. The videos below are my first attempts to bring together the ceaseless motion of the static images and put them into actual motion. It seeded natural to do this over time. Visual motion is experienced as a whole frame rather than the moving of the legs as the people walk. How does this effect help you engage or disengage visually? Each video is short and unlike GIF files these do not loop over and over, they have a beginning and an end.
I also began to think about the environment itself. Meaning, what if the architecture also had a point of view on how they communicated with those thousands upon thousands of people that anonymously interact with them. A simple reversal of roles. How is it that the largest of objects can be visually ignored and unnoticed. How we place context on this kind of communication plays a role, but this role is mostly absent. I find a connection between buildings and the body. Both are vessels and containers. The contexts are both metaphors and literal / obvious. I get a great sense of duality from this as an idea and it has pushed me to want to dig deeper into the concept. This is the first series of works below using just one image to suggest the morphing of sentiments and feelings that are mirrored between the public and its architecture. Thank you for visiting. This blog post is a first draft into the further development of this new body of works. Revisions are being made and I intend to show and display the works beyond the Internet soon.
Communicating My Deaf & Hard of Hearing Self – Part 1
Welcome to my first series of art works produced examining and identifying as a deaf and hard of hearing person. It has been a long road. This body of work is the first in a multi-part series with supporting written explanations broken down into individual blog posts. I encourage the viewer to view the gallery of digital art works above and then delve into the individual blog posts listed below.
All of the pieces have been created in 2018 and consist of Digital Illustrations, Collage, Animated GIFs & Video Art. Fragments of manipulated grainy images and re-compositions display the variation and extension of each piece. The works are visual representations for the regular distortions, missing of sounds, words and overall communication I experience daily. They represent how I feel, react, overcompensate and adjust to communication in various interactions. They are intended to be both subtle, confusing and difficult to follow. “Communicating My Deafness – Part 1” is the first installation in the series. It is first published here on my website and shared via my social media platforms. I am seeking to extend this body of work into a lecture series for both the deaf, hard of hearing and the hearing world.
An ongoing visual. Wrongly, from a very young age my impression of being deaf and hard of hearing was viewed and internalized as a major impairment and disability. I absolutely disagree with my past self, and the assessment that the ever so young me had made. The confused little guy who made this decision was pretty much only 5-years-old. How could he have known better at that time, he couldn’t have. How many other deaf and hard of hearing people also fell into this belief system as children as they witnessed their fellow classmates bullied and picked on simply because they were deaf or hard of hearing. Maybe you had a different experience, but the sum total was the installation of fear. The fear that caused you to hide. Was 5-year-old me most afraid of being deaf or afraid of being bullied and labeled as different? I wonder, as I reflect, (and dig deeper into child psychology) how many other children went into unconscious hiding and denial, fearful of becoming the next victim of the bully’s prey and or labeling of being disabled? Where are those children now if those experiences still remain unexpressed and buried alive inside of them? I wonder. My unexpressed fear evolved into a split life of being deaf when I was alone while faking not to be when I was not. I had to own this and take responsibility for the choices I made, even the unconscious ones created as that 5-year-old boy. I am ready and happy to discuss and share the “how’s and why’s” about my experiences.
I believe there is value in sharing one’s story of overcoming fears. Of course, this is my own personal journey, but I know I am not alone. Writing, reflecting, writing some more and producing art works around the subject has been a great vehicle of communication and expression. It is the most meaningful body of work that I have created to date. It is the action I needed to begin the changes and transitions in my life. The trained artist in me attempts to avoid the words “art & therapy” in the same sentence, but this too is an outdated thought that I picked up from someone or something that isn’t me. The process is a form of therapy. I see no reason to separate them. I see a method that helps me assert myself and grow. Personal responsibility is empowerment. It is easier said than done and believe me, in this case it has been a lifetime of 1 step forward, 20 steps back. I know that I can play a role in helping others who are deaf, hard of hearing or both. I can also help and inspire hearing people to learn and understand what it is like to be deaf and hard of hearing. I can help by becoming a better communicator of what I need. As I learn more and more ASL each day I can share what I learn with those I encounter. This ranges from family, friends, colleagues, students and my fellow human beings who I have not yet had the pleasure to meet. This inspires me.
2018, Digital Illustrations, Digital Art, Animated GIFs & Video. A continued series of manipulated images and re-compositions. The variations of each piece show the process of how the works displayed are visual representations for the missing of sounds, words and overall communication. They are intended to be both subtle, confusing and difficult to follow. A representation of the daily life I experience between the world of the hearing and the non.
Through the eyes of a child,
seeing unaware of the missing sounds.
A series of repetitive actions and the behaviors observed,
the rituals of the alphas.
An acute visual awareness to the reactions of those involved,
activating simultaneous perceptual contrasts of engagement.
Acute visual noticeability to the facial expressions, gestures and body language,
while low sound frequencies murmur, missing, absent.
Defaulting, unconsciously to a visual conversion of emotional blueprints,
placed into the new interior folder titled “fear”.
I am overcoming a lot of my fears by directly putting myself in public positions to have to talk about how hearing loss and being deaf has affected my life. As a college professor (yep, for 14.5 years now) I have to be in front of a lot people each and everyday. I have to be more direct with my students and colleagues by telling them how I feel and what I need from them. By being honest about who I am and what I am missing, the feelings of compassion and empathy become mutual. This helps both parties make an emotional connection that I feel is necessary in education. (I believe this will play a huge role in the future of education.) Often I have to ask people to repeat themselves, or to speak slower, or louder. I answer incorrectly to questions often and everyone laughs or looks at me with a priceless look of confusion. These two things always make me laugh as it always creates a connection and reminds me to take myself lighter. Almost as if, that is where I begin to know someone, because they would now know me as I am. I need to be more honest and forward about why. It is my responsibility to make people aware of what and how much I am missing. It is natural to seek deeper meaning out of yourself and how that applies to the world around you. This is how we grow, through self-discovery as we interpret ourselves in relationship to our time here on this planet. However, I have learned the hard way that it can slip away all too fast if we are hiding from ourselves. Hiding seems to perpetuate more hiding. I often wonder how many other people with sever hear loss and deafness are out there doing what I used to do?
As an artist, I have had an epiphany about my work recently throughout this healing and fear facing process (and I continue to do so). Maybe you are already familiar with my work but most likely not. I have been a high volume output kind of artist for my whole life. Always making many many things at once in an immediate sort of way. Volume and production, productions in volumes and accumulation. Ah what a metaphor, right under my nose no less! By connecting my physical limitations of hearing to the question, “Why do I make so much stuff?” “Why have I put the emphasis on physical output and high volumes of works produced?” It’s about filling in the fear and deficit of how much I have been missing and have missed in this world. Overcompensation. I was missing a lot from early childhood, and as time went on, the more I was not hearing the more art I would make. Production and Volume = Missing. The funny part is, most of the art that I make and have made is not dark or representative of frustration as a whole. It does not communicate unhappiness, but I do see a huge common thread of a lack of meaning in some of these pre-hearing and deafness aware bodies of work. The context has changed and this plays a huge role in the kind of work that I greatly need and want to produce. I will work on understanding where the new works will best be displayed and presented. The best is really yet to come.
The animations above continue to explore the soundless looping GIF format. These pieces begin as digital image fractures and manipulations. They are re-composed and organized as new imagery and content. How does that process play a role in communication? Missing 5-8 words in any sentence can have a profound effect on how one may respond, comprehend or take away from an interaction. What does this look like when that actual missing fragment(s) takes place? Repetition is used to display the distortions and metaphors for how this experience may be interpreted visually. If you are a hearing person viewing these animations you may be “missing” the usual audio aspect to the videos you see, watch and hear each day.