Wednesday, July 30, 2008

art.xxXtenxion report

Now back from a wonderful week at art.xxXtenxion in beautiful Regensburg.
During this time I did 2 machinima workshops, 2 cinema programmes, attended a lecture from Stephan Doessinger about bastard spaces, and did the live camera for the Second Life projection screen during the MixxXxed Reality - Extended Night.

During the first day of the workshop I did a general introduction to the topic of machinima, and explained different approaches ('getting in there' versus 'pre-produced'), how it relates to regular RL filming and animation, techniques (camera, animation, lipsync etc.), the pros and cons, and my view on the future of machinima. All this was illustrated by demonstrating software and showing some of the footage we shot for Volavola in the week before I went to Regensburg.
During the second day we got dirty, by actually making a machinima!

A very interested group of people showed up for the cinema programmes.
The first programme showed machinima documentation of different art forms that exist in Second Life. This programme was a bit harder to understand for people unaquainted with virtual worlds. Different people like different things, but I dare to say that most visitors were blown away by Osprey Therians video of a performance by Second Front at Dorkbot SL / Dorkbot Paris called Haledol Dreams of the Minotaure.

Some more people showed up for the second program, that showed off a variety of machinima made in Second Life. With this selection I aimed to show that the creators imagination is the only limit, that any movie genre can be succesfully made, that machinima have surpassed the underground gamer community, that being 'turned off by Second Life esthetics' is history, and most of all to inspire and entertain!
It was a great success and people clapped after every movie, and I got many enthousiastic reactions and thank yous for showing this selection!

The art.xxXtension event had a great finale with the mixed reality night!
Wonderful performances by Biagio Francia, Gecko, Avatar Orchestra Metaverse, Komuso Tokugawa and Dirschl & Starzinger.

To finalize all this, here is my favorite photographic residue, made by Bingo Onomatopoeia of the RL members of the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse that were in Regensburg, and their SL avatars. (many more members played from all over the world).

A big thank you to everybody who was there and especially the people from Pomodoro Bolzano who organized the entire event!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Machinima Love

I'm very happy and honored to be artist in residence at arts2media in Regensburg! Right now we're in the middle of art.xxXtenxion 2008, Mixed Reality + Bastard Spaces.

I'll be doing a machinima workshop July 23 + 24 from 14:30 to 17:00 at Medienwerkstatt arts2media, Andreasstr. 28, Regensburg.

Next to the workshop I'm proud to be showing 2 machinima programmes at Kino Wintergarten.
In the first programme Machinima Art Movies a selection of art documentaries will be shown that highlight some of the most interesting works of art as well a shine a light on the richness and versatily of the Art World as it exists in Second Life.
The second programme The Art of Machinima will show an inspiring selection of short movies of some of the best young filmmakers, including comedy, videoclips, art house, and mystery. It will be clear why machinima is breaking out of the underground community of gamers, and has become more widely recognized by mainstream audiences, as well as the established film production companies.

Please visit the art.xxxtenxion blog for the full programme.

Many thanks to Gazira Babeli, Lainy Voom, Chouchou, Robbie Dingo, Kirsty Hawkshaw, Mejo Kuu, Berardo Carboni, Moebius Overdrive & Allen Kerensky, Jason Smith, Arahan Claveau, Osprey Therian, and Patrick Lichty/Man Michinaga.

Above all thanks to the wonderful people of Pomodoro Bolzano!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Video exhibition at Lars New Art Space

Opening reception 10 july, 12 AM PDT / 21:00 CET at Lars New Art Space

On display is a selection of 5 different machinima by Evo Szuyuan that were made over the last year.
To give a better sense of how they were made, and what they are about, a set from each movie is recreated for each movie when it starts playing (by clicking the screen).
Take a seat and watch the movies, or walk around and explore some of the art works, props and informational items in the space.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Google Lively

Had to give Googles newly launched virtual world Lively a try ofcourse, and created a room.
Not much there except for a lava lamp, and it's not very likely much more will happen in the recent future, but still.. The feature to add it to your website is nice!
So do visit, and maybe I'll be there to chat ;-)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Avatar Puppeteers

Pictures by Fau Ferdinand and Bea Fontani

After a chaotic, but very interesting and inspirational dorkbot session, a new Second life group is born, called Avatar Puppeteers. This group is devoted to further development and usage of Avatar Puppeteering and bringing more expression to avatars, and also to new input devices connecting to this technology in line of HandsFree3D.
Here is a full report of the session. The chat-log is edited, for readability, and keeping the attention on the topic, but the most asked questions were "when can we play with it", "is this only a proposal", and "how can we help". So soon I will make a download of a puppeteering viewer available on the Creative Machinery website and add some instructions on usage, and summery of what works now, and what doesn't. With a fine group of performance artists, machinimatographers, software and hardware developers, scripters and documentation fetishists, I'm convinced great things are going to happen :-)
Many thanks to JJ Ventrella and Philippe Bossut for their wonderful work, and willingness to share it!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Dorkbot Session Announcement

The upcoming Dorkbot session will take place 6 July 1:00 pm PDT / 22:00 CET at the Odyssey Simulator!

This dorkbot session will be of interest to developers, performers, machinimators, animators, photographers, and just about anybody with an interest to bring more expression to avatars and more direct ways to interface with our embodied selves.

JJ Ventrella (a.k.a. Ventrella Linden) will present the avatar puppeteering project. A project motivated to bring more expression to the avatar, by enabling a more fluid and direct way to manipulate the ‘physical avatar’. This is a Linden Lab project that unfortunetely was ‘put to sleep’ as Linden Lab decided to focus on the stability of Second Life and internal opinions differed over how compelling the feature really is.
Last month however, Linden Lab released the client source code of this project, to allow other people to build on it (and convince them otherwise).

Philippe Bossut, will present Handsfree3D, a project that enables to interface with virtual worlds via 3D camera motion tracking. Philippe Bossut has developed several demos to demonstrate how one can navigate and execute all sorts of tasks without the need for a mouse and keyboard, and over the last month he has been working on connecting his code with the puppeteering feature.

Please visit the Dorkbot SL blog for full information on the event, the projects and the presenters

5 days off

These are busy times, with many things going on at the same time, so I'm a little late posting the Mixed Reality performance of Avatar Orchestra Metaverse at the opening of the festival at Montevideo (for which Creative Machinery Evo Szuyuan / Brigit Lichtenegger did live Second Life camera work), but the festival is still going on and I encourage everybody to go!!

Crosswire – in search of the synesthetic effect
Optofonica presents:
From 03-07-2008 until 26-07-2008
Aernoudt Jacobs (BE), Sagi Groner (IL/NL), Kaffe Matthews (UK), Telcosystems (NL) and TeZ + Janis Ponisch (IT/DE).