Project 4: Exercise 4 Cutting Edge

So this exercise feels like an bit of an odd end to part three of this module. It’s about considering and finding examples of new forms of media, can be games, video, other interactive media, which I consider cutting edge or inventive forms of visual media.

I’d like to take a moment to say I am not massively cutting edge – I still think Instagram and Twitter feel like fairly new versions of media, they haven’t really existed for that long now have they!?

I took a look at some of the links mentioned in the exercise brief:

Future Farmers – seems like an interesting bunch of people working on projects to encourage the broadening of minds and attitudes towards farming, science, art. I think what I like most is that the work often involve public interaction with pieces so it feels more organic or like a developing thing rather than a piece of art work which must be left untouched.

Communiculture – was perhaps something that needed a bit more time for me to get my head round. I can’t decide if it’s a space for people to reinvent themselves by creating an avatar through which they can pose questions or if it’s freeing for people to actually express their inner thoughts or battles with a degree of anonymity. I created an avatar for myself, and answered a question, but found it to be lacking in depth. I thought it might be a forum for in depth discussion but it feels more like throwing your thoughts at strangers. Maybe I just don’t get the concept?!

I thought at first I’d explore Games design and look for Indie games or games with cutting edge ideas of interaction or story development. But I wonder whether a simpler, less glamorous look at the rise in sites which offer a place for designers to showcase and sell they work would be deemed acceptable as ‘cutting edge’.

In theory these kinds of websites offer people a view into up to them moment trends or cutting edge ideas or graphic design. My first thought was of the site, Behance, where artist’s, illustrators, designers can showcase an online portfolio of work for anyone to view. I like the simplicity of the interface, you click on an artist and a series of images of their work, unclouded by advertisements or information appears and you can simply enjoy looking at the images.

On the more commercial end of the spectrum are Society6 & Redbubble. These sites feel more like places for consumers to get hold of a variety of cutting edge designers work than a place where designers themselves are actually celebrated. Appearance wise both sites look fairly similar in format, you can select the form you want a piece of work to take (i.e. print on poster, t-shirt, mug), and then browse images of work from there. I guess the cutting edge aspect here is that designers can sell their work in relative speed, the downside is the designer has given over the production or finishing of their work to effectively a middle man.

These examples are probably more likely to conform to messages to persuade or entertain people, namely to draw in potential clients or customers.

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