The Process

Theory Delivery & Discussions.
The process began with delivery of the basic theory. In class, I asked the students to engage with Barthes and follow my interpretation. This led to some interesting conversations, and some confusion. Starting form the statement “The Author is Dead”, I introduced them to the notion of the Reader. Referring to NLP as a means of exploring perceptual Filters, asked them about creativity and the 1% Inspiration, 99% Perspiration notion of creation. The job of the author is to combine ideas that already exist, in a way that the reader can access. But what of situationalists, Dada, cut up techniques or chance? What if we add the chance element in to create a new meaning?

Practical Development
I started with the Exquisite Corpse task, as a way of exploring Chance. It was also pointed out that it had a very specific structure.
We next used a Storydust technique. Students were asked to select images that captured their attention.
These were mixed in together, and students were asked to pick one and tell the story of the picture.
They were then asked to pick three and tell the story with Beginning, middle and end.

Narrative Structure
It was explained that a beginning middle and end is necessary for any story telling to take place. This can be within the Micro and Macro Structure. To demonstrate this, each section was shortened to a single sentence to form a 3 act, 3 sentence story. Each sentence was further sub divided, so that each act has a further 3 acts to it – also a beginning, middle and end. This gives us a 9 act structure, a simple narrative device that can be further played with if necessary. It was made clear that this could form the basis of a future script, with each line or act being a scene in the script.

Example 1:
Beginning – After a massive argument with his wife a man leaves his house to find his car clamped.
Beginning [1] – An argument ensues between him and his wife
Middle [1] – The argument continues and his day gets worse with a disappointing breakfast
End [1] – leaves his house only to find that his car has been clamped

Middle – He passes signs, such as shirts and graffiti that hint towards the conclusion but he ignores them due to his bad mood, his colleagues also make his day worse
Beginning [2] – as he walks to work he marches whilst ignoring all his surroundings.
Middle [2] – during work his mood worsens as his colleagues talk about their enjoyable weekend
End [2] – leaves work early because of his boss

End – His head becomes clearer on the way home and notices the signs a bit more and he finds out he is going to be a father which drastically improves his day
Beginning [3] – he is now less stressed and begins to notice his surroundings
Middle [3] – as his mind clears he realises he forgot what the argument was about
End [3] – he arrives home and apologises to his wife and she then tells him she is pregnant

Example 2:
Girl in a dead end job in dead end town
· Girl wakes up every morning in a shabby flat, but surrounded by beautiful paintings.
· Walks through a run down town past closed shops on her way to work.
· Works at a dull job, and then goes home to paint her paintings

Artwork is discovered by accident
· She walks a different way to work and ends up bumping into an artist and her paintings full out of her bag.
· This artist asks her to work in his art galleries over the world painting different pictures.
· She ends up going to London for the first time

Ends up travelling the world
· Her art work is loved by many of people and she becomes famous
· Ends up owning different galleries over the world and its changes her life
· Ends up travelling the world

Example 3
Beginning – Man dies in a motorbike accident leaving his wife devastated

* There is a very happy couple who adore each other and lead an idyllic life
* The husband dies tragically in a motorbike accident on the way home from work
* The wife is devastated and has a complete break down

Middle – Conflict: Love for her husband vs the desire for life and family

* Her friends try to set her up with someone new but none of them work out
* She is desperately lonely and wants to have children to live her life rather then stay in mourning
* But she feels guilty for thinking about someone else, feeling like she’s cheating on her dead husband

Ending – Finally accepts love and loses the guilt over loving someone else and lives happily ever after

* She meets someone accidentally who reminds her of her husband in the way he talks and acts
* She is still conflicted inside by the love for her husband still but decides to take a risk with this man
* In the end she becomes pregnant and so she gets her life back after all this time

Example 4
A Man starts experiencing time in a non-linear way
· An accident causes a man to experience time in a non linear way
· He experiences various parts of his life as simultaneous, jumping between them.
· He panics and is lost in all aspects of his life, confused and scared.

Believes he needs to solve the problem before he jumps to a time when he is dead, thus dying
· He realizes that he may jump to a point in his life time-line where he is dead
· His family believes he is mad and he struggles to think sanely.
· He begins to try and stop the time jumps, become obsessed and loosing all essences of his life.

Spends his natural lifetime trying to solve it, only to die as he does.
· He spends a huge period of his life stopping the time jumps
· He finds a solution, which will stop him jumping through time and it works.
· He dies of old age.

The Artefact.
Each student delivered their 9 lines to the camera. the lighting state, framing and background were all specified to give a similarity to each person. Once these were digitized, each student delivered the individual line to me for further experimenting, as well as an edit where all 9 lines are kept in order, but a random interval of between 1 and 9 seconds is inserted. This forms the basis of ‘The Kitchen Sink” and “Soap Generator” versions of the artefact.

A 9 screen installation version was installed which forms the basis of the student experience of the artefact. This artefact allows the individual lines to clash and blend, hiding teh original meaning of the stories and allowing new meanings to emerge.

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