09 July 2007

Road chimney - a blandland

As Andreas and I work on a manifesto about the Lumiere videos, someone brought up the idea that we're competing with Blandlands, an exceptional site in its own right and entirely different, in my mind, than the Lumiere videos. In fact, despite having no real relationship w/ the Blandlands creator, I have nothing but respect for his work there and elsewhere, and Andreas further suggested that I make that clear on behalf of us both.

I find competition in this arena to be a rather perverse notion. Since when is art or even simple communication a rivalry? Not only is that a dull evolution of the creative process; it has no foreseeable benefits in a case such as this. While friendly opposition has been known to propel folks (myself included) forward at times, the idea that anyone is fighting for best compilation of tedious (or inspiring, depending on how you view it) footage is ridiculous.

So, let it be known that contention is not our aim; rather, I believe we're all just trying to encourage folks to make more observational media. I also captured this footage several weeks ago with the explicit intent to submit it to Valdez. Lumieres, in whatever way you interpret them, are one thing; refreshingly dull landscapes are quite another.

One more new lumiere - Obligatory Cat 2 - here.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think you need to worry about anybody else having the same thought - it's like that person made a connection between the two things in their brain and then felt the need to make it into a confrontation, rather than stop and think about it for a second.

I don't particularly feel like arguing anything or staking out territory for either, but apart from Blandlands' subject matter, one other obvious difference (so obvious it makes me laugh) is Sound. Perhaps that person didn't think about how essential sound is to Blandlands. Or how its absence is just as essential to the conception and execution of a Lumiere.

Great that you got an excuse to highlight Blandlands, though - and Valdez's other sites. Links you didn't include were http://aaronvaldez.com and http://valdezatron.com - all full of his genius.

Lumieres are giving us an excuse to take moving snapshots the way we might take a photograph... but of things whose beauty lies partly in their movement. Reminds me of an Ani di Franco song - Evolve - where she has a couple of lines about realising why she doesn't look good in photographs: because she has the kind of beauty that moves.

When we're all exhausted with Lumieres and working without sound... (not for a while yet, I hope) I'd like to suggest a second phase - adding live natural sync sound. A powerful extra level to add to a moving snapshot. For instance, this 20 second one I took on the spur of the moment last month:

Oh, and as heard with your chimney, which definitely benefited from the atmospherics. Nice!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was a very well thought out comment and I agree with all my heart. Eventually we will begin breaking the rules, but as you say now and in the forseeable future much of the value of the lumieres lie in the accepting the constraints put forth without questioning them.

Blogger Quirk said...

Out of curiosity, where is the comment about the perceived competitiveness?

Blogger B said...

The comment about competition came from a private conversation w/ another media/videoblogger enthusiast who, like Rupert mentioned, couldn't perhaps think outside the box and immediately put the two unrelated projects together in his mind. We thought this could happen again and felt the need to clarify before the fact.

And, moreso for us (as much as I feel comfortable speaking for Andreas), because there is so much talk about monetizing and general competition at times in what was hoped (at least for me/us) to be a community of support more than a group of adversaries, we like to make it clear that we don't support that kind of negative rivalry but rather hope we can all push one another in fair and effective ways towards better creation without harming ourselves or one another (we hope the same, obviously, for everyone's respective work).

Anonymous Anonymous said...

B is right. To think that projects have to compete or even that they are mutually exclusive is wrong on many levels.

Blogger Michael Meiser said...

I'm outing myself as the speaker of this unspeakable atrocity.

While there is a slim chance this comment could have been made by someone other than myself I believe it was most likely me who spoke it.

Andreas and I constantly talk of memes, themes, genres and other such evolutions in the vloggersation.

It doesn't just sound like something I'd say. I specifically recall quipping about the relation of blandlands and lumiere the way I often quip about the absurdity of such things as "monetization" and competition in this space.

I find humor such a very useful tool for getting quickly past the misconceptions, hilighting key distinctions, and breaking down blocks and mentalities that prevent us from seeing things as they truely are.

In short... such comments are a way of transcending the limited perspectives perpetuated by good old american capitalism on every subject.

Vlogging exists well outside of the realm of traditional video based media like TV and therefore well outside of the realm of capitalism and indeed the realm of juvenile egoist notions.

It can be simply communication. It can be art. Indeed both blandlands and lumiere represent for me the things I love best about it. They are conversations of a very subtle, nuanced and abtracted nature. Conversations of a purely aesthetical nature. Wether the suburban aestheric in blandlands... or the appreciation of simple light and motion in lumiere.

And I see rupert and Adam Quirk commenting here to... and condeming this straw man comment and supposed boogyman... which is actually my own disembodied and out of context statement.

Rupert's Twittervlog and Adam's projects including thepan.org and Wreck & Salvage are two fine examples.

Twittervlog to me represents one of the purest examples of vlogging as simple interpersonal communication. It doesn't hurt that Rupert has great entusiasm and charisma either.

Adam quirks work and collaborations with others come in a long line of purely artistic explorations of the medium.

Switching gears.

I started to write a response to this several times. I think the below quote best sumarizes it.

"the idea that anyone is fighting for best compilation of tedious (or inspiring, depending on how you view it) footage is ridiculous."

I believe I may have even used the term "stealing the thunder". :)

This quote is precisely the point of my humor. To point to the obvious absurdities. Two abstract aesthetical meme's competing with one another like two juveniles. I'm glad to see the staw man taken to it's logical end, taken out and beaten.

This statment taken completely out of context shows no ignorance of vlogging. No bigotry toward art, asethetic and everything that lies outside the realm of traditional darwinistic and capitalistic theory. It shows a sharp dry cutting humor, at worst juvenile humor.

Peace and love.


Blogger Michael Meiser said...

Responded here: http://www.evilvlog.com/?p=1302


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