Tag Archives: netnarr

Your Fortune Reads: Don’t Touch Other People’s Stuff!

“Hello, can you hear me?”

That was an “interesting” class we’ve had this week; from the topic to its execution. Unfortunately, our professor, Dr. Zamora, was absent (speed recovery!). Therefore, we’ve had an online-based sort of… lesson? Presentation? I don’t really know what to call it. It felt like an online-class that was conducted in an actual class; the best of both worlds, I guess. Our class consultant, and second-in-command instructor, Mr. Levine (too formal?), carried out the entire lesson for us.

The topic of the lesson was… GIFs! A great follow-up to Memes, if I must say. It’s actually surprising to observe the possibility of conducting an entire lesson based on these stuff. I guess, when you examine the hidden meaning behind creating a GIF, it’s possible to discover some subtle complexities that could fill up a whole lesson. Our studio visitor for the week, Brian Lamb, briefly talked about what GIFs represented online; a culmination of feelings/expressions conveyed through an (often humorous) animation. In other words, they contain certain messages underneath their visual appeal that could prove difficult to transfer otherwise. Also, they’re very small in terms of file size and easier to share with other users in comparison to videos.

I was originally planing on talking about the recent developments that occurred in relation to sharing materials, specifically visual ones such as GIFs or Memes. However, I did not wish to write another “dark” blog post, especially now that we attempt to move into a much lighter aspect of the NetNarr course. So, I figured that it might be interesting to go a little experimental with this one. The expectation is probably for me to fill it up with GIFs but I prefer to be little different. Thus, I’ll be presenting a dialogue-based (short?) story instead, that hopefully captures my thoughts on the issue at hand. What issue? I’m sure that you’ll find out once you read it. Each segment contains different set of anonymous characters, save for the first and the last one. If you were wondering about that picture of fortune cookies, well, it’s related to the story below. It’s a subtle story… but hopefully not too subtle. Enjoy!

***

[T minus 734 days]

“So… Have you made your decision, yet?”

“Not really. I’m still playing around with some ideas.”

“Have you ever heard of ‘time is of the essence’? You are not alone in this world… Others might come up with the same ideas as you do if you wait too long.”

“Perhaps… I have confidence in my fortune though.”

“Speaking of… Why don’t you check to see what is in your fortune cookie?”

“It’s probably some ‘lucky’ number for the lottery.”

“You never know…”

“All right, let me see… It’s…”

“What is it?”

“A date, I think…”

“A date?”

“It just says 2031.”

“Hey, maybe that’s the year that you finally get to publish your book.”

“Very funny. Anyways… I need to take off.”

“Got tired of me already?”

“I need to get something for my father’s birthday. It’s tomorrow.”

“Tell him happy birthday for me.”

“Sure thing.”

“What have you got in mind for the gift?”

“I don’t know… I’ll probably get him a Johnny Cash CD. He loves his music.”

“CD? Are they still making those?”

“It’s the closest thing that my dad would know how to operate.”

“You might be underestimating him…”

“Maybe… Anyways, I’m off.”

“Take good care!”

[T minus 22995 days]

“Honey…”

“Yes, dear?”

“Have you seen this?…”

“What is it?”

“On the newspaper… It claims that Cash might’ve copied his song from Jenkins.”

“What? Which song?”

“Apparently, Folsom Prison Blues…”

“Isn’t that your new favorite one?”

“Yea…”

“I’m certain it’s only a misunderstanding, dear.”

“I sure hope so…”

[T minus 20075 days]

“… the Congress has approved the new Copyright Act, which is expected to become effective as of January 1st, 1978. The new Act is claimed to be a substantial improvement over 1909…”

“Can you please shut that off? I’m getting a headache just by listening to it.”

“Fine…”

[T minus 7300 days]

“Man, these Hope poster clones are everywhere. Check this one out…”

“What is… Oh, it’s the Mona Lisa. Very funny.”

“Maybe I should create one of my own… How about Alf?”

“No, thank you grandpa.”

“What? I’m sure people would recognize him.”

“Very doubtful… By the way, have you heard about the lawsuit?”

“What lawsuit?”

“Well, it turns out the template for that Hope poster is plagiarized.”

“Seriously?”

“Yep. Some guy named Mannie Garcia was apparently the one who created it first. Then, Fairey stole it. He claims it’s fair use…”

“Wait, didn’t he make money out of it?”

“Oh, yea…”

“Wow.”

“I’m curious to see how everything turns out.”

[T minus 4745 days]

“What are you watching?”

“What do you think? My favorite YouTuber, of course…”

“You know, you spend way too much time on that website.”

“It’s called YouTube.”

“What?”

“Never mind… She says that she’s got another strike.”

“Strike?”

“It’s a copyright claim… It’s been a big problem on the website for a while.”

“I thought it was called YouTube…”

“…”

“I’m just messing around… So, what happens when you get a strike?”

“I think you lose ad revenue. And, if you get three strikes, your channel shuts down… I don’t want her channel to shut down!”

“Wow. They’re really upping the restriction-game, aren’t they?”

“It’s too much! What happened to the fair-use?”

“Fair-use of what? The content?”

“Yea…”

“The big cooperations obviously do not wish to pass up on potential profit.”

“There is even an attempt to kill the net neutrality now, which she was talking about in her previous video…”

“What is that?”

“You’ve never heard of it?”

“Nope.”

“Well, I could explain it but… Oh, s**t!”

“What happened?”

“Restoring Internet Freedom bill…”

“Huh?”

“It’s passed…”

“So… what is that mean exactly?”

“…”

[T minus 4380 days]

“Memes and GIFs are copyrighted in EU now? What is this world coming to?”

“Tell me about it…”

“Article 13? What a name. Good thing we’re safe over here.”

“At least for now. I’m quite certain that it’ll have a ripple effect around the world… It’s only a matter of time.”

“Whatever. Do you know when is it actually going to be implemented?”

“Last I heard, it was 2021. The funny thing is… Some meme-based subreddits already started to ban people from Europe.”

“It sucks to be them, I guess.”

[T minus Zero]

“…and so, your book, which is titled ‘An Essay of Animated Emotions Online’, exhibits images of copyrighted materials. As you have failed to prove official permits for these specific images, you are indebted to minimum $500,000 in ‘damages’, and further production of the book is going to be delayed indefinitely. Do you have any questions at this time?”

“Yea… Uhh… Do you know if there is a good noodle shop around here?”

“…”

“I might as well spend my last buck on some good food… that I can afford.”

[The End]

***

Well? Although I am tempted to explain every single thing in it, I’d like to leave “the meaning” of the story to the reader. Some might think that it’s a bit pretentious but… a little subtlety goes a long way. Before I end this post, I wish to bring up the “say cheese” prediction that I had previously. It turns out, not a single person has used that phrase in their blog posts from last week—come on people, be more s̶i̶l̶l̶y̶ creative! I suppose that it’s a good thing I didn’t choose to become an oracle, or a predictor of some sort professionally. It reminded me though… Are we ever going to examine online challenges in this class? That famous, and very “sophisticated”, cheese challenge really took off… for some reason. Worth a look?

Also, I have to post at least one GIF, so…

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(Something that I found on Pinterest… Don’t sue me!)

Scadoo Into Net Art!

“Art is in various forms. Take your pick.” -Lilly S. ✨

Garden Lovers
Charles Cscuri: Garden Lovers

We are halfway through the semester, and I am glad to say that I have learned about art and digital alchemy more than I expected to. I never thought I would take a class like this since I am unfamiliar with a topic as unique as this, but I am satisfied with the results so far. We started off the class wanting to talk about more of the “lighter” side to the internet, which I appreciated. Yes, we all must be aware of the “darkness” side, but at the same time, we want to appreciate what artists and other people are doing as far as the adding “light” to the internet.

Looking into digital art and how it goes into Net Narr, the art of production and reproduction and transience (which means the state or fact of lasting on for a short time, transitory nature). What was said in class was, “The image in the context of the digital revolution: The photograph becomes digitalized.” I had two reactions to this conversation. The fact that photographs have become digitalized allows me to share. I like the sharing aspect amongst family and friends. When I travel, I am able to send my photos to my family either through text or share them on social media for other family members and friends could see. Before, my close ones would probably not have seen them. If they did, I would have to mail it to them after paying to print them out. The sharing of digital photos are not only accessible and easy, but it’s free!

On the other side of the spectrum, I think about the platform of digital photos. A couple of months ago, I made a decision to start putting my pictures into photo albums because I know that digital photographs will not be around forever. My family has photographs of my great-great-grandparents and other family members because we have the physical copy. I believe there will always be something special about the feel of holding a photograph in your hand. Quick Story: We found a picture of my father when he was younger, and he is the spitting image of my nephew (his grandson). They look identical. My niece takes the photo, downloads it onto her phone, matched my father’s hair to look like my nephew’s, put them side by side, and that’s how they used digital art! There are so many branches to digital art when it comes to photographs and photography that’s fascinating to me!

Moving on to Net Art, we learned about the Paradigm Shift. This was, “due to the digitalization of the photograph: Recontextualization through appropriation and collage. Also, questioning the relationship between the original versus a copy,” (Dr. Zamora). Dr. Zamora also pointed out other parts of digital art and internet art that I had not thought about before. Here were some of the main points:

  • Digital art has redefined the identity of cinema.
  • Digital art has meant the erasure of moving images understood as “recording reality.”
  • Does giving up control over the image sequence mean the “end of cinema.”
  • Internet art is characterized by the tension between a free information space versus the proximity of commercial context.
  • Code as a form of creative writing. Code as the paint and canvas of the digital artist.

We dove into this topic, even more, was when we had our fourth Studio Visit with Alex Saum. Her articulation of digital art and incorporating her own art and opinions into the discussion was truly refreshing.

These were some of the points that she made that I thought was important:

  • YouTube has the best and worst platform…negative and positive.
  • The relation of the private and the public tracking the confessionals into the influencers (poetry into the essay/essay reflection), trying and retrying.
  • Creating not only a platform but a voice through sadness and despair. Creating spaces: sharing personal experiences and including personal and cultural language.
  • Representing yourself in digital art.
  • Darkness/light: How do you position yourself as an artist within that? Her answer: going based on her personal experiences. Participating in structures that are totally out of our control. I try to make my pieces look like they’re going to break any moment (glitches and stuff). Nothing is ever really actually outs. If you can’t access it, then you can’t access it.

Watch the Studio Visit!

Last week’s class gave me a lot to reflect on as far art goes in the digital world. There are positive and lighter images on the internet, and I think it should be talked about more.

Next week, we’ll be talking about Gifs! I’m excited about that! Stay tuned for next week’s blog about what we discussed in class.

Bye for now! And of course, don’t forget to check out the DDAs that I did for this week!

#DDA288

#DDA298

#DDA300

Skin Girl

Drumbeat batters breeze bare-knuckled. Bloody, if it could. Tut-tut-tut transforms the atmosphere into something tormented. Tortured. Just a sliver shy of a scream.

I sway to the sound, skin soaking in its scathe. Absorbing the maim and claim. The tug and tear.

In the thick of the crowd, illuminated by a mix of fire and faint moonlight, a figure fights the drum’s beating. Twists sharp turns to thwart possession. To prevail. A losing game.

Once lured in, that’s it.

Other figures clap, pound flesh till the night seems alive with its own rhythmic pulse, thrumming steadily through the battered air. A grunted chant rumbles in time.

Somewhere, deep in the wood surround, a wolf howls. Tears at night’s skin. A territorial call if I’ve ever heard one. A victorious brag. I grip the skin I’m in. Tame growl into grumbling chant. Return sight to the light bathing those gathered in shades of dark red.

The dancer nearest flame, so deeply red they’re shadow on smoke, throws back their head–theirs and the bear skull that swallows it whole. An echoing, bellicose bellow–growl–silences both flesh and drum beat.

Another deep sound, the wolf.

A last, me.

For now.

Closely, I watch the dancer shed the bear skull. Slide claws as long as fingers from their hands. Keep the grizzled pelt wrapped ’round their wide shoulders, though. For warmth, maybe. The skin in place ’round their meaty waist.

Two figures donning wolf skulls and matching hides separate from the crowd as the lone bear dancer returns to it.

Beats begin their battering blows once more. Less heavy. More lean. Like wolf meat. Night’s pulse picks up in a low thrum, a lower hum. Faintest scream.

I track the bear dancer as they cut through the crowd, one toothy smile at a time. A short laugh or two. My rhythm mirrors theirs. Overtakes it. Sleek. Light. A slow skulk. Steady hunt.

We meet where the edge of the crowd kisses forest fathoms.

Bear Dancer slashes a charming smile across their face, distinctive jaw jutting upward with its self-assured slant as if to display the many scars crisscrossing sensitive skin like trophies. One rather deep cut is still raw. Fresh. I curl my fist.

It’s him.

A grin of my own begins to stretch flesh. Tempt tearing. Bear dancer’s widens in return. Devours his face.

“Hello,” he steps into my sway. “Like tonight?” I nod, grin sharp enough to put Bear Dancer to shame.

“You dance good.” Another growl tamed into something softer. “It’s striking,” I motion to the pelt on his back. “your form.”

“Yes.” He preens, fingering the fur. I swallow fury. “A lucky catch, bear. Usually, they keep to their caves.”

“Ah?” I drag him back to me. “Where’d you get the bear then?”

“Clearing by Slim River.” His voice is proud. “Mama and cub hunting. Hare, probably. I got Mama first in the side with my spear. When she charged, I got her in the head with my handy ax. She clawed, though.” He taps his scarred chin. “A fighter.”

Huntress.” I correct.

“Yes.” Bear Dancer nods, looking grave. “Very fierce. The others threw many spears till she went down. The cub though,” Bear Dancer’s grin returns. “was easy. Little fella. A club to the head.” Bear Dancer swings his arm past my face. “Dead.”

“Dead.” I repeat, dead, stepping back into forest, spiny nettles brushing bare skin. Swirl my hips. Bear dancer follows. “Poor boy.”

“There were two.” He leans close as if revealing a secret. “Cubs. Two of ’em. Always with Mama but not this time. Very odd.” He quirks his head. “Bears don’t usually keep more than one. Too hard to feed. Keep only the strong one…. Wonder where the runt is? The little fella cried out after he was hit. Almost like a scream. Maybe–”

She heard.” I finish with too much gnash. “The sister?” Bear dancer gives me a confused look and I reach for his hands–the ones that were wearing Mama bear’s claws–settling them on my waist.

“Yes.” Bear dancer tightens his hold on me. I lead us further behind branches. Beyond the fire light’s creeping reach. “You know the story?” Now, I quirk my head. Take another backward step. “About the sister cub. That she’s one of us. Child lost from the tribe long ago. Found by bears. Clothed in their skin.”

“I hadn’t heard.” Another step. So close.

“Not from ’round here?” Bear Dancer asks. “Was wondering…. You look familiar but can’t place face.”

Finally. Trees give way to open space. A clearing. Nearby, a watery babble replaces drum beats. Flesh beats. Moonlight overtakes flickering flame.

“It’s not my usual.” I brush Bear Dancer’s hands off me and he tilts his chin. That fresh cut. Shiny red beneath the moon. I flex my fingers. Feel nails sharpen. “Face.”

A swipe of my claw to the head and Bear Dancer is down. For brother.

I’m on him before he knows what hit him, my lithe body now heavier. My skin, fur. Much better. Weight settles on my shoulders–my skull no prop large enough to swallow a head whole. Bear Dancer’s. I stare into his wide eyes, grizzly reflection in their glisten. I can’t smile anymore so a snarl will have to do. Recognize me now?

“S-s-skin-n-w-w-wwalk-ker-r.” He accuses.

No, a growl like a laugh rumbles in my cavernous chest. I told you. Huntress. 

A claw finds purchase in the mark Mama carved so I’d know and tugs. Jaw gone before Bear Dancer can scream. Then, claws like little spears and teeth like ax blades find flesh. Tear. Bite bone, too, creating their own beat, own chant. Rhythm.

And, when the song is done, I toss my head back. ScreamTear the night in two. It’s no victory screech. No brag. Nothing celebatory. It’s a warning. An announcement.

I’m here.

I’m coming.

I’m hungry.

The battle is mine.

****

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*Side note: those last words are coincidentally my first thoughts in the morning…. Weird. ^.^

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Find more of my delightfully disturbing/twisted tales under the Killing It tag~

As always, hope you enjoyed~*