Yesterday saw the launch for Nae Pasaran's Kickstarter campaign as it sets off on its' journey to become a feature length documentary.
Nae Pasaran (They Shall Not Pass) tells the true story of three factory workers from East Kilbride who made a stand for international solidarity in 1974, when they refused to repair jet engines used in the violent military coup in Chile. Their inspiring and previously untold story draws attention to the incredible efforts of everyday people around the world during this painful time in Chilean history and the effects they have had on the present day.
Designing the posters for this project has been a real privilege, and I am very excited about watching the film progress.
You can get your hands on a copy of the poster by making a donation on the kickstarter page to support this great project, or watch the trailer below to find out more!
Kit Records have made Snow Blind their song of the week!
The lovely folks at Kit said -
I’ve spent several happy lunchtimes this week legging it about in the snow, evading matchstick ghouls and collecting rainbow-flavoured orbs, all to the tune of wobbly violas. Wtf am I talking about? Well, our song (or game?) of the week, of course. ‘Snowblind’ is a collaboration between Glaswegian sonic and visual artists Wolf, frd and PHOENE. A frosty, primitive affair, the game is surprisingly addictive. Combined with the dark ambience of Wolf and PHOENE’s euphoric crunch, the whole experience becomes delightfully immersive.
We love new, innovative ways of releasing music. So click HERE to play the game, listen for yourself and support the artists. You may be some time…
The original article is here.
A big thank you to Kit Records!
I am using lino for the main shapes of this puppet as it needs to have the appearance of smooth brushed aluminium, but remain hollow and light weight enough that one performer can easily support it. The lino holds its shape beautifully and has a lovely shiny, flat surface. I was very lucky to find this silvery off-cut roll at the Barras. Using the net shapes I worked out on the miniature puppet I squared-up the body shapes onto the lino, adjusting the curves by eye. This involved lots of equations, which left me concerned until the end that a mathematical mistake would see me spoil the limited amount of lino I had. But fortunately it was fine. The full size puppet body is 12.5 times larger than the prototype.
Two hula-hoops provide the under structure for the body. Hula-hoops cost £2, they are very light-weight, hold their circular shape well and are easily resized. I resized the hoops to fit the measurements of the puppet by removing the staples which hold the join together, removing the plastic tube insert at the join, cutting the hoops to size and then re-inserting the tube at the join and stapling them back together again. You can also make larger circles by joining the plastic from two hoops together, in this instance it is best to use equal lenghts for each 'half' to maintain an even circle. Good cheap circular building blocks like this are otherwise quite hard to come by. The lino is riveted to the hoops, with 12mm washers stopping the rivets from popping through. I wanted a join which was good and strong, but also appropriate to the look of a metal robot. I am also riveting it decoratively to keep the look consistent.
The top hoop of the body will be attached to an internal supporting structure made from garden cane with the weight of the body hanging from this hoop, rather than the lino having to support any weight coming from above. The bottom hoop will be removable so that the body can be squeezed through a standard doorway. Making something big which can still fit through a doorway is often quite hard, but it's very restricting if a build can't be stored in a regular room, or taken to a venue which doesn't have a double door or garage entrance.
Once this structure is in place I will trim, neaten and add decorative detail to the body.
The arms and legs will have cane 'bones' attached to the internal body structure and passing through the lino, but not structurally joined to it. Again I am trying to make sure there is no unnecessary stress on the lino. The elbows and knees will have foam wrapped around the cane joints to stop the cane from bursting through the shiny silver ducting hose which will cover them and to give the finished joints a nice rounded appearance.
With the body taking shape, and now that I'm feeling more comfortable with the materials and tools that this build uses, it's probably time to tackle the slightly more complicated piecing together of the head. More on this soon...
Switch the lights off, turn the volume up and immerse yourself in these glorious soundscapes! Snow Blind has arrived!
You can use the widget above to buy this excellent new double a-side release from WOLF and P H O E N E.
Or for the full experience you can visit the Snow Blind game page here - http://frd.itch.io/snowblind and listen to the tracks while playing my accompanying mini-adventure. (and then download them!)
WOLF got me involved in this lovely project, and it will be officially released tomorrow!
Given a starting point of loneliness I made a short survival themed mini game set in a snow covered landscape. Snow blind was very satisfying to make, it was small enough to come together reasonably quickly, but complex enough that I still rage-struggled and had to learn new tricks to get it working.
A drawing of a figure in protective gear which had been on the studio wall for a while but which was too blank and colourless to become a painting, provided the source for the survival story of the game. I wanted some characters to interact with the survivor but the drawing was so blank and I didn't want to duplicate the main figure, so eventually I decided to use the charcoal the drawing was made with as a source for a character. I ended up with a sort of charred charcoal matchstick man. Then I took fire and light as a stimulus for transformation and pieced the bits together. The sole survivor wears protective gear which has saved them from the fate of the matchstick men, and as the survivor encounters different forms of fire they face their loneliness head on.
I started work yesterday on a miniature prototype for the Mini Maker Fair robot puppet. It is based on one of their pre-existing characters, all of which are related to projects which have been part of the event in the past.
Usually with big puppets the aim is to try and use materials which will bounce, float and add movement to the simple understructure of the puppet, in an attempt to bring them to life. An interesting problem which I haven't faced before is in trying to do the exact opposite. This puppet needs to look solid and rigid, like sheet metal, but he still needs to have a personality. The body and head shapes are both Frustums, cones with a flat top. To break his silhouette up a bit and get away from an overly simple form I made the head smaller than the body, with a slightly increased taper. The original character design has a rounded head, but that would be very complex to replicate with the materials I intend to use, so after a few tests I decided on a flat head. I think the important thing is that the eyes stick up clearly from the top, as this seems to give him a lot of his character. I tried out different sizes of eyes and shapes of curves for the mouth to get the expression I wanted. It should look like he's trying to communicate, as if he's just about to say something. I want him to seem like he has thoughts, so he doesn't just look like a neutral, man-made construction.
In this version the arms and legs are articulated, and the head can rotate. In playing around with him I found that allowing the head a small amount of extra movement, a bit of a wobble, increased his character by a huge amount. It makes him seem funnier, he looks less certain about what he's doing, a bit dithery or over-excited, and when his head bobs up and down or rocks from side to side it really softens his movements and adds a liveliness to him. This is not something I had intended to do with the big version, but now that I've seen how much it adds I think it's a keeper.
In scaling him up I will make small alterations to his proportions to make sure he looks right at the larger size, but the tests here in learning how to plan out his net shapes and in thinking about his movements have been really useful. The full size puppet will be around ten feet tall so I expect to add a few visual features which are not in the source designs to give it the right amount of detail at that scale - some nuts and bolts, stray wires, buttons or levers - but I will keep these to a minimum and make sure he remains faithful in feel to the original design. Here's a quick movement test -
I've just finished work on the free trial version of Wurm!
Click here to play.
I'd really love to hear any feedback, suggestions, comments, criticism or ideas.
I am a Glasgow based visual artist and maker