War of the Wall- a story on Storify

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As my first Storify attempt as apart of my New Media class, I chose for my community the legendary story of Banksy vs Robbo. Although I am a huge Banksy fan, here is the story from Robbo’s perspective:

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For the lazy people quick cap:

Most people have heard of the feud between two legendary street artists Banksy and Robbo. Each Have had their opinions as well as silence but the real war is strictly on the street. Here from Robbo’s perspective is the story of their rivalry, like I said, from Robbo’s perspective. Full documentary below:

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End Excerpt:

However, in light of this story, I decided to show Robbo’s perspective of what went on between the two. We may all agree to disagree because when it comes down to it, it was between the two of them and only they will know the truth. Whether team Robbo or Banksy, we can all agree street art is changing and has an impact, especially in the new media world. How else would you have known about the feud? #teamstreetart

Virtual Victory

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In the past posts, I have related street art to various theories and have touched on topics such as visual communication to which you can refresh your memory on my previous posts here.

Quick Refresh (for those who were too lazy to click on the link), Visual communication is expressing ideas and experiences with a combination of imagery and textual content to communicate a message to a viewer.

However today we are switching gears to place street art and graffiti with video gaming. We are going to go more in depth to connect street art to Bogost’s theoretical frame of procedural rhetoric within video games that are inclusive of street art.

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Video games are awesome, anyone can take on the persona of another and fight battles or build a farm or practically anything. Today’s games exist to which an almost alternate reality is created for us when we see real life people and places recreated for a gaming experience. Video games are a form of persuasion and expressionism, drawing in a person to interact and creates a model that represents cultural, social, and ideological realities.

First the Games:

Graffitier (A site where you may spray paint or use paint marker virtually to tag any surface. Including a woman’s back) Example below:

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Graffiti Time (a game where you jump walls, avoid cops and tag places to get keys to unlock the next tagging location) Example below:

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Many other graffiti or street art games incorporate tagging. For example sites where they provide a picture location of trains, walls and other places with an assortment of digital spray cans and paints to create virtual street art or tags.

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Street Art and public opinion has come a long way. One example of real life gaming with street art is the newest Oxygen buzz of Street Art Throwdown where a group of artists are in competition for 100,000 dollars while thrown into a series of difficult obstacles that push their skills to the next level.

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Next the theory:

Looking at Bogost’s framing of procedural rhetoric, we first break down the word procedure. It can be described as something following a structured behavior. Procedure often is given a less positive meaning because it is often used in negative examples. However procedure is tagged (pun intended) with official standing and bureaucracy. In contrast to that, it can also limit our way of thinking due to focus on structure that procedures provide.

Now, rhetoric can be defined as effective or persuasive expression in writing and speech to communicate what the author wants while captivating an audience.

So then what does this have to do with video games and street art?

Bogost tied the persuasive power of video games to the ability they have to recreate and support cultural and social positions (tagging scenario, social opinion of street art = vandalism) but can disrupt that belief by letting you alter that reality. Therefore having this manipulation can lead to a social change for those positions.

One game, Graffiti Time, is a minimal example of such. You start as a graffiti artist and your main goal is to get to the place you are tagging (avoid cops, ect), make your mark, grab the key that appears and move on to a more challenging level.

This takes a socially constructed idea of art on public walls as vandalism to a challenge to continually tag surfaces to move to higher levels in a game. Or therefore finding challenging obstacles or getting through those while passionately putting up your art much like Street Art Throwdown has recreated. This is true for other things as well, where you are given a photorealist version of a wall, train, ect and can digitally create tags or works of art.

Very closely related to the idea of visual communication is a more specific rhetoric Visual rhetoric in which, “visual elements are used to influence people’s attitudes, opinions, and beliefs,” (Helmers and Hill). Visual communication cannot formulate the same ways of oral and written expression, therefore street art creates a new form of rhetoric thats visually impacting.

Now Extras:

  • (Relating to visual rhetoric right above) Digital media as mentioned in previous posts is a good way to gain exposure. One way street art, visual rhetoric, and politics has collided was in Shepard Fairey’s Obama Hope campaign posters.
  • Invader who I have talked about in prior posts has created the ultimate game for himeself where hes does the opposite of what we tallked about today. He explains his project as, “freeing the Space Invaders from their video games TV screens and to bring them in our physical world. Everything started the day I decided to give a material appearance to pixelization through ceramic tiles,” (Invader About). But invader goes a step further, he is seeking world domination of this games he has created for himself. View Map

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“I try to display 20 to 50 pieces per city, which is already a good score. Sometimes I happen to return several times in the same city, deploying different “invasion waves” as I like to call them. The goal is to increase my score by continuously and restlessly invading new spaces.”

Work Cited:

Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Videogames -Bogost

Rhetoric: Classic to digital –Bogost 

Defining Visual Rhetorics – Charles A. Hill & Marguerite Helmers

Put Yourself on the Grid – Why Online Exposure is a Good Thing

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Stop what you are doing. Now, look up, down, left and right, what do you see? Odds are most of you would have come across some form of visual communication.

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What exactly is visual communication?

Visual communication is expressing ideas and experiences with a combination of imagery and textual content to communicate a message to a viewer.

For example the famous The Treachery of Images by Magritte

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The image shows a pipe with the words “Ceci n’est pas une pipe,” below it. Which is French for, “This is not a pipe.” The painting is not a pipe, but an image of a pipe. This example of Surrealism suggests a paradox of that objects correspond to words and images. In other words this is a masterpiece of visual communication. It is taking imagery and words and formatting them in a way to communicate a message to a viewer.

But in a fast paced, digital year of 2015 how does anyone or more specifically artists get noticed?

Visual communication has made a great shift to digital works. Online presence is a growing must have for exposure. It’s hard enough gaining recognition as an artist but without an online footprint you practically don’t exist.

Picture this; you are in class or work. Your phone beeps. What is it? It is a phone call or text or email. Someone is trying to communicate with you. 2015 and every quick, efficient way to get in touch with you is at the fingertips of millions of people and you have that same ability. Every day we get calendar reminders, emails, and texts. We can track what we eat and who is at our favorite places and so on. Welcome to the age of the quantified self. In today’s world, technology has made everything responsive and at a push of a button.

It is December 17, I am in class when my phone lights up. I see an email notification, from Behance saying I received a message. It shows a snippet, “Hi Lauren – You have a great portfolio. I’d like to touch base regarding Spring 2015 internships at NBC Universal within our creative departments.” (note my excitement- SNL gifs)

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I instantly go to the Behance app on my phone and open the message. Completely intrigued at the offer, I think to good to be true, I open the Google chrome app and search the name of the person who sent the message. Between the phone applications and easy access to information on the internet, it was easy to find multiple platforms that legitimized who he was.

I sent an email back off my phone to request more information. Within the hour I was already touching base with one of the creative directors at NBC. The same day we had set up an interview time to which I would have never had the chance if it weren’t for my online media presence and techne (visited in previous posts).

About 4 days later I had the interview. I didn’t walk in with a giant portfolio book but an iPad. I unlocked the screen, pushed a button and there was everything he needed to see. That very same night my phone lit up again. I had been offered the job.

Needless to say, digital media is incredibly important. In my line of work, if you aren’t online, you don’t exist.

My Online exposure:
Behance
Instagram
LinkedIn
WordPress blog (what you’re reading)
Twitter
Website (Launching in a week)

What is most important is digital media and how to utilize that in today’s world to capture the attention of those you need to in order to advance in this world.

However, regardless of major or profession it is clear digital media is a very relevant factor. In fact, some heavily print and hand done art forms have been able to utilize online media to gain a community of followers and to get a conversation going.

In my previous post about hyperreality I somewhat touched on Invader who uses online media to map where his art is or Banksy who actually gained most of his following from online presence. I also touched on the incorporation of media with a hand done medium to create a spectacular piece of work like BLU had.

Here are a few examples of how Graffiti artists have used media or gained exposure from new media:

More Street Art Throwdown found on Oxygen

Useful Articles and Creative Platforms:

LinkedIn – If you don’t have one already, get one. LinkedIn is basically in simple terms, an online resume. But this is one platform that makes you digitally available to anyone. You can be searched and messaged for an opportunity you may not have gotten otherwise. Yes you can send in printed resumes but a lot of employers are now asking for LinkedIn profiles. This isn’t to say print media is going extinct but to say digital media is relevant and almost a must have.

Behance – online creative portfolios ranging from Graphic Design, Photography, Street Art and more.

Graffiter –Fun application to paint the streets yourself.

The Rise of Visual Social Media Article

Digital Self Article

Designspiration – for Inspiration

Street Art Inspiration

Global Street Art – follow street art around the world.

Digital media has given me a variety of opportunities and expanded my network. Whether its inspirational websites or online media presence I always tell people to get connected and establish roots. You never know what sort of opportunities await unless you put yourself on the grid.

We Are the Ones .. That Will Break the Stereotype

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Hello my fellow readers, artists, street enthusiasts,

Today we are going to look into a GoPro video that features a graffiti artist named Jessica Sabogal, based in the Bay Area. Jessica’s work, “possess a vision of female identity that is revolutionary and powerful, brave and beautiful. By utilizing a spray can, she aims to color her canvas by unraveling stories she once heard, lived, struggled, and loved.”

Spray paint is often a tool that is associated with negative visions such as vandalism, illegal activity, destruction, profanity, gang affiliation and much more. However what we will be focusing on is much more positive. This will not only talk about Jessica Sabogal’s work in the video above but will be applying James E. Porter’s theory from, “Recovering Delivery for Digital Rhetoric.” Porter, in his writing, strives to address one of the five rhetorical canons, this one being, delivery.

Delivery, as it has been for most of history, is oral and bodily aspects when giving a speech or performance. In other words, how someone acts toward an audience via gesture, tone, voice, rhythm and so on. With technology changing and how we act and respond to the environment around us today, we are revisiting the topic and alternating it to suit the present.

One of the most important aspects to framing delivery is techne, or art. In this case the techne would be spray paint and even more so the use of the GoPro’s technology to give the viewer a more in depth experience, whether it be to move with the strokes of the paint or take in the whole scenery.

To delve more specifically into Porter touched up on 5 main points:

1. Body/Identitywhich is concerned with online representation of the body, gestures, voice, dress and image along with online representation of race, class, gender, sexual orientation and ethnicity.
– In regards to online body/Identity, this video mentions how graffiti is a predominately male dominated field. Jessica mentions quite a few times on how she believes it’s important for female artist to be apart of it; “I want to be seen using spray paint so that other girls can go pick up a can and not think its this crazy thing of the streets but as a valid way to express themselves artistically, anywhere.” The way she speaks and gathers a group of women to pursue one art piece and defy all gender representation is truly revolutionary in the graffiti culture.
-Not only does this break gender roles within the graffiti and street art culture but presents a more positive and empowering outlook.

2. Distribution/Circulation- methods of circulating digital information using technological publishing options.
-The biggest aspect of this would be the techne we had talked about before. I think the GoPro, not only with its widespread popularity, but also with the technology itself allows for wide distribution option including but not limited to GoPro, Youtube, basically any video site as well as sharing with friends via social media.

3.Access/Accessibility- Audiences connectivity to Internet based information.
-This crossovers with point number 2, but I think that for awhile street art is something you just stumbled upon whereas now, because of the distribution/circulation methods, its become more of a culture connecting to other cultures, experiencing and sharing art, videos, ect through these media outputs such as Youtube, Twitter, and so on.
-Not only connectivity over art but just in general, Jessica mentioned she needed help and she put out a volunteer call via connectivity to the internet and this type of audience having that access was what helped her form this group of women to complete this giant beautiful work of art.

4.Interaction- Types of engagement allowed by digital designs.
-There is nothing quite like raw tangible, large scale, paint a wall kind of art. However the power that comes with Internet interaction is what is shaping conversation around these communities, cultures, works of art. Digital design is allowing for mass production, connectivity to anywhere in the world, and a variety of different perspectives on just even one piece of art.
5.Economics- Concerning copyright, ownership and control of information, fair use and the politics of information policy.
Graffiti/street art is raw creativity. You can replicate or emulate something the best you can but the surface and material changes the piece you would want to replicate into something completely different. There is also no going back you can only improve and build upon the so called “mistake” that you make.

“Anytime you see one of my paintings people look at it and there like ‘oh acrylic right?’ and im like ‘no spray paint.’ People can not believe that something that looks like fine art is done with spray paint.” -Jessica Sabogal

We Are the Ones- that will break the spray paint stereotype.

References
-GoPro- http://gopro.com/
-Jessica Sabogal- http://jessicasabogal.com/
-We Are the Ones Video- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XftClpqdnS8
-James E. Porter- Recovering Delivery for Digital Rhetoric