Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Rounds by James Hutchinson

James Hutchinson (TV graphics designer and video artist.)recently told me about a non TV project that he did at the end of last year.  Called "Rounds", it  is an  video installation projected on a 360 degree screen (see vid below).  After castigating him for not telling me sooner (!), he told me that he was trying to  challenge the traditional viewing environment by immersing the audience in a circular cinematic world of beautiful images. (soundtrack composed by audio artist Dan Hayhurst)
Rounds from james hutchinson on Vimeo.

Apart from the, I think, beautifuI images in the films, I was curious as to how he projected it, using just two computers.  I understand the idea of video cards that support two screens, but couldn't work out how he synced it all.  He told me "I used a program that a guy wrote in the states called 'multiserver', which makes one computer the server and the other the client. You can load as many clients as you need using the ip addresses from the computer, it then takes the timestamp from the QuickTime and aims to keep them in sync."

Here's a bit from the press release:
In a society over stimulated by competing demands, our senses engage in a power struggle to trigger the brain’s perception and ordering of our individual worlds. ROUNDS dissects the circularity of thoughts and emotions of our human existence. The circle itself permeates the work, from the physical viewing platform, through the looping nature of both sound and image, to the circular stem of the visual elements.
Hutchinson’s video work is characterised by a rich and multi-layered style of imagery and his experimentation with delivery. He draws from a lush palette of techniques including stop-frame animation, typography, motion-graphics, animation and traditionally filmed footage. There is a consistent determination to extend the viewing experience and participation of his audience.
Personally I think it's great that so many motionographers are persueing their artistic dreams alongside their paid TV work – it helps keep the industry fresh and vibrant.
ROUNDS was made possible by the Screen Innovation Production Fund, a partnership between Creative New Zealand and the New Zealand Film Commission.

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