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ericStimmel

...excerpts from my studio work at cranbrook...

forwarding address

Wednesday, October 10, 2007
i've closed this blog since it was really a record of my time at cranbrook. you can follow this link to my current contact page and CV. you can also reach me at the contact on this blog, but new post will probably not be coming. perhaps at some point this work will be continued...

a little local press

Sunday, June 11, 2006
from thedetroiter.com

Video Helmet #2

Friday, June 02, 2006
so i finally posted some pictures of the degree show piece that Andy and i created.
i've been getting some links and inquiries and probably should have coordinated a more thorough description of it to post at the same time.
i will get on that, but in case you think that i've abandoned this blog i'll just give a brief description of the project. more will show up in the next couple of days.

we used a custom built Jitter patch, a piece of software built using Max/MSP + Jitter, to control two cameras, a couple of microphones, and some prerecorded video and audio. this was running on a Mac Mini [ PowerPC version ] with a video helmet [ with video goggles and speakers inside ] as the output. the input, aside from the cameras and mics, are a series of triggers inside the beam that manipulate the input combinations and order. we designed the software to mix the prerecorded audio/video with the live feeds based on where the participant was standing or walking.

some additional notes: my laptop was running Apple Remote Desktop administrator software and the Mac Mini was allowing me to connect to it and control it by connecting through a Belkin wireless router that was hidden in the museum's reception desk. this setup gave us the ability to modify the patch, change the prerecorded source material, record video and audio from the cameras and microphones, and generally touble shoot the entire setup without pulling out a ladder and attaching a keyboard/mouse/monitor to the headless brain concealed in the beam. power was turned off at night so an Automator Workflow was designed to start and stop the application and startup and shutdown the computer each day.

fun at the degree show!

Saturday, April 29, 2006
no new pictures of the work, but there were festivities!

middlehillgood laser dog!

check out more pictures of the show here:
all pieces - except mine i guess
opening
the opening from brice
setup

graduate degree show

Monday, April 24, 2006
saturday was the opening for the degree show. it was amazing! i know it's pretty much a given that you get to be in the show, but not really coming from a background of showing work in galleries, this was a pretty big deal. andy and i collaborated on a piece that we'll just call 'video helmet #2' and although there was a lot of prep work before the installation began [ fabrication, computer programming, wiring, testing... ] there was also a lot of in-the-museum time too. that was a crazy thing... since so many people had big installations, there was a lot of construction noise and since our 'site' was fairly prominant there was a lot of foot traffic around the project which made it a little difficult to trouble shoot, but i think it was a good experience... at any rate here's a shot of the show, i promise to post more photos later...
Video Helmet #2

a mark of intelligence....

Friday, April 07, 2006
bruce mau lectured at cranbrook tonight to a packed house. i've never heard him speak before and was pleasantly surprised [ okay i wasn't surprised, but let's just say it was pleasant anyway... ] to find that he was a really intelligent and interesting and well-spoken man. the way he talked about his work, his office, his projects [ pronounced canadian style with a long 'o' ] and his passions really confirmed to me that optimism and passion and enthusiasm are very important characteristics of successful and intelligent people. somehow toronto has moved up a notch or two on my list of future places to live...

anyway, i have this book about pranks and in the back are some quotes that i was reading yesterday and the one that kind of stuck in my head, in fact i almost wrote it down because it kind of struck a chord with me, says "It is a mark of intelligence, no matter what you are doing, to have a good time doing it." i paused on it yesterday because i think it is one of the things i have learned here... not that i didn't really run into it before, just more so here... the people i really respect, that i think are super talented and very smart are also the people who love life. they seem to be having fun when they are working and it's very apparent. so i just wanted to draw that coincidence on digital paper as a reminder to myself.

thinking about...

Thursday, March 30, 2006
...the jig and the very sharp knife metaphor.

the other day we talked about jigs in seminar. it reminded me of the mantra [ i guess ] that i've heard while learning more about unix that it is an operating system made up of very specific programs that are very small and very efficient. this was kind of the way i was interpreting the idea of a jig... not exactly and in fact if i think about it too much i start to lose the analogy, but i guess i just need to write it down to figure it out... and how it relates to what i am doing... because i'm sure it does. i was thinking that as bill turned to me and said it...

this is going to be [ or already is ] rambling and more for me... so bear with me. a jig [ as i've seen them made ] is not a fetishized object while it is being made... it is only romanticized after the fact when it is hung on the wall or photographed or just 'hung onto' because it inspires wonder or curiosity or embodies mechanical beauty. in it's making it is purely and supremely functional. it makes some task easier or possible... it might be for repetitive use or for that one cut that can only be made with a customized setup. it is the 'very sharp knife' ... i think... i thought, as we sat and talked, that it was the thing that was useful for one project or a few projects, but not enough [ or for enough people ] that it could be marketed as a product. it is something that i need... that kind of goes against the VSN analogy... everyone needs a VSN or in unix, awk or sed or whatever... but maybe those are kind of exceptions... they start out as a jig and then get polished and everyone can use them... they can be customized to a certain degree, but really only do one thing.

so, for my work... i sort of feel like patches in jitter are like jigs... and so are the shell scripts that work with my gps and webcam... they are quick and easy [ if you are skilled in the basics - which incidentally i am not, but nevertheless... ] and can be customized to a certain degree... maybe actually, the VSN is just a tool to make the jig... that sounds more reasonable... speaking of jigs and making things, i should be making something right now...