Breaking Rule #1 and #2

Yesterday we had our presentation for assignment 2, and personally I think it could have gone a lot smoother if our group had of had more time to practice everything. I think I did well presenting and because I knew exactly what I was talking about for each section of the presentation and wasn’t relying on myself remembering the notes I had written, I was much less nervous than I have been with previous presentations.

Feedback:

  • Conánn really liked idea of public art for the artefact as it was nice to see work being brought out of the class.
  • Liked the meaning behind the artefact.
  • Presentation could have been more professional (more rehearsal would help with this and equal division across areas covered in the powerpoint.)

General Feedback:

“This year was by far the most consistent, you all did really well, there was no one below 50% on this one.”

  • Research should be ‘T Shaped’ – it should cover a broad range of information about the topic but then should be focused on one part of this and we should delve deep in to this.
  • Remember to have texture and hardness in your art – avoid the airbrush tool
  • The schematic was a design opportunity – it doesn’t have to just be  a straight line, it can be art.
  • Have an underlying grid in your work.
  • Harvard Referencing is an important habit to get in to.
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Final Artefact

For our final artefact we decided on the image of the teeth floating in a Starbucks cup. This meant I got a chance to use clay again (which I was super happy about) to make the teeth, and I’m really happy with how they turned out, even if it is incredibly creepy.

I then made a fake top within the cup using cardboard and a lot of hot glue so that the clay teeth wouldn’t sink when we put coffee in them, and was kinda incredibly grossed out with how this went as teeth make me really uncomfortable..

Then we went in to Photoshop and edited this image so it was more simple and could be made in to stickers to put around town! After printing it however, I felt it was too elaborate still so drew a very simple version of it and scanned it to be printed for the final stickers.

We discovered however that nowhere in town prints stickers, so we had to do it the old fashioned way and just cut them out and put them around town instead, which while more time consuming gave us a chance to clear our heads and have a laugh for a while…

We even got to mess with Conánn a wee bit while making sure we wouldn’t get in too much trouble…

Me: Conánn, does it matter if our artefact is completely legal or not?
Conánn: What do you mean?
Me: Exactly.

We were then told to be discreet or Photoshop them in.. We went for the first option.

 

 

Beating up Jack and Gianni

When coming up with ideas for the artefact I’ve been looking at advertising for the movie and in general and it’s use of graphic design which incorporates aspects of the film itself.

I thought it would be cool to do something like this using team members instead of stills from the movie, so decided to use my skills with sfx makeup to make Gianni and Jack look battered and bruised and then we took photos of this.

Note: no team mates were injured in the making of this photoshoot

Gianni and Jack edited them to make some promotional sort of photos that were subtle and didn’t give away too much about the movie.

 

Don’t Talk About It

  • Rule Number 1.. Don’t talk about Fight Club
  • Rule Number 2.. Don’t talk about Fight Club

With this iconic quote Cliodhna and I were wondering how the message of Fight Club spread so immensely and how they gained new members every week; did people just brought their friends along and didn’t tell them what was happening?

Within the movie, there are Starbucks cups placed subtly in each shot (apparently each shot.. I’m not convinced..) which is very subtle product placement in the film, unlike the product placement for Ikea which is glaringly obvious from the beginning of the film.

From this, I decided to look at subliminal advertising and see if we could do something like this as a final artefact rather than something more obviously about the film.

Subliminal advertising is “the use by advertisers of images and sounds to influence consumers’ responses without their being consciously aware of it.” 

Talking to the group, we decided to incorporate the Starbucks cup in our artefact, so based of this and relying on people taking in our work without it being glaringly obvious, I’m looking at street art, especially tagging and posters to advertise Fight Club around Belfast without it being overly obvious to people who don’t know to look for it.

Themes in Fight Club

Fight Club covers a lot of themes, most of which overlap in many ways as they have a similar nature. The main themes are iconoclasm, Nihilism, Anarchism and Marxism.

Nihilism as described by Friedrich Nietszche is the belief that in the world there is no meaning, no truth, no morals, no purpose and no values as these values are all constructions of man. In the scene where Tyler and Jack drink together, they realise neither has been in a fight and decide to hit each other. Although it is painful, the pain – unlike many things within his life – is real.

Iconoclasm refers to aggressive statements or actions against any well-established status quo.

Alongside iconoclastic, Fight Club can be seen as being radically Anarchist and Marxist with Tyler Durden’s attempted mobocracy (domination by the masses) in the film. Anarchism is a political philosophy which rejects the concept of compulsory government and supports the elimination of these systems in favour of self-governed societies based on  voluntary institutions. On the other hand, Marxist Theory (the political and economic philosophy of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels) focuses on the oppression of the masses by the Bourgeoisies and looks to a socialist and classless society as the utopian end goal. This film shows these concepts by revealing how we have become obsessed with commodities who are at the mercy of (and are exploited by) advertising companies.

The mobocracy’s revolt

 

Anti-capitalism

Cult Films

As Fight Club is considered a cult classic, I decided to look in to cult films and see what it is that makes a film a ‘cult classic.’ For the most part, it seems like this genre is defined by audience reaction to the film unlike other genres which are defined by their story line or the intentions behind the movie.

Because of this, when looking at lists of ‘Cult Classics’ there are no two that are exactly the same, as what people consider to be a cult film varies greatly from person to person and has also changed with time, becoming less strict with it’s definition than it once was.

When Fight Club was first released in 1999, it was a box-office disaster with it earning only $37 million, just over half it’s production cost of $63 million. It has however found success in ways other than just cinema with it selling over 6 million copies on DVD and video, and a 10-anniversary edition being sold on Blue-Ray. Since it’s release there have been several actual fight clubs set up based on the rules the film started and a celebrity blog set up which took it’s name and early attitudes from the film.

Looking at this blog really helped me understand what made a cult film a cult film other than just it’s following. They say that aspects of a cult film include:

  • The anatomy of the film (content, style, format, etc)
  • The consumption of the film (the audience reactions, fan celebrations, and critical receptions.)
  • The political economy
  • The cultural status (the way in which a cult film fits a time or region; whether it complies with its surroundings or if it exploits, critiques or offends them.)

 

Artefact

The other aspect of this assignment is to create an artefact that is fuelled by the narrative of the movie and all the research we do surrounding the film. Conánn has said that this artefact can be anything as long as it is an artistic expression related to the movie we’ve been given; it can be an image, sculpture, installation piece, photo, animatic, short film or animation, piece of music, interpretive dance, anything.

The definition of an artefact is “an object made by a human being, typically one of cultural or historical interest” and so whatever it is we create should be relevant to both the film and our culture. As this film is considered a Cult Classic (i.e. a film with a cult following which often goes against traditional storytelling structure)

I think that it would be interesting to focus on the themes of Fight Club or  something more abstract and less obvious related to the movie as the first rule of Fight Club is Don’t Talk About Fight Club