DMS Student Showcase 2021

DMS 302 Experimental Moving Image

DMS 302 Header Image.

“Experimental Moving Image” is an intermediate level undergraduate production class introducing students to alternative approaches to the moving image, from abstraction and collage, personal documentary and hybrid narratives, to stop-motion and video installation, across single and multiple screens.

 From creative idea development to experimentation with a wide range of intermediate filming and editing techniques -manipulating time, light, color, and movement –students refine their technical skills and create several short personal projects, as well as participate in class workshops and exercises. Screenings, readings, lectures, and group discussion provide insights into contemporary and historic approaches to avant-garde film, experimental documentary, narrative, and video art, and inspire students to expand their moving image practice beyond traditional boundaries.

Jamison Namingha

Rate of change

DMS 302 Video

As we have all tried to move through the COVID-19pandemic, time has manipulated itself in a fascinating way. Instead of traveling to school or work, we are confined to our homes and some of the close locations around us. In this film, time is depicted as a cycle that not only follows a trend but gradually picks up speed. The purpose of rate of Changeis to show an insight into my experience with time during the pandemic. The daily tasks stay the same, wake up, go to work, drive home, complete school assignments, then repeat the cycle tomorrow. The film includes hard cuts and multiple camera setups, as well as an original synth backing tracking track to carry the scenes. Post visual effects are kept to a minimum with only a few exceptions in overlaps. As we continue into the future, perhaps we will be able to break from our own day today cycles.

Nick Good

Professor Scottsteiner

DMS 302 Video

This piece is a collage animation containing several paper cutouts of photos and text, including some cutouts manipulated in Photoshop for comedic effect. The piece visualizes a speech given by professional wrestler Scott Steiner during a promotion for “Total Nonstop Action Wrestling” event that took place in May of 2008, known as“Sacrifice”. The speech itself details Steiner’s ambitions to win a three-way match for the TNA World Heavyweight title against wrestlers SamoaJoe and Kurt Angle. He goes into immense detail on how the odds favor him and that“the numbers don’t lie”. The audio was recorded in one take, containing several errors, and thus the promotion and the speech became a running joke within the wrestling community before reaching broad appeal in internet communities. This piece is my take on creating a comical visual accompaniment that fits the chaotic audio it is paired with.

Paige Bulera

coraline collage

video

This short film is a collage animation inspired by the 2009 film,Coraline.Coraline is an animated film about a young girl who discovers a new world and must escape to get home. This collage animation used various mediums to tell the story in an interesting way. In the original film the antagonist was named The Other Mother, and her goal was to sew buttons on Coraline’seyes. In contrast, this collage animation uses other objects to symbolize specific characters and props in the movie. Coraline Collage Animation was inspired by the amazing work of director Henry Selick.

Yubo Shen

Disorder

302 video

Have you also thought about what is our position in life, or the position of human beings in the universe? My idea is to insert the scene in the movie based on the material I shoot to express a kind of confusion and self-struggle through montage editing. For the shooting, I focused on preserving geometric shapes on the screen, which makes it more convenient for me to do masking layer when editing. The entire film, I chose to do black and white because it can make different resources look more unified in visual effects, and it can also increase the sense of mystery.

Aaron Ettestad

Burned

Burned Video

Burned is a stop motion animation created primarily through light. Using very slow shutter speed and drawing with flashlights and colored lights, the animation is brought to life to  create an abstract spectacle of imagery. Layered images, cutouts, and videos create a surreal atmosphere that plays into and takes full advantage of the stop motion medium. Thematically, the 2 minute piece tells a story of loss, reignition, and rebirth. 

From a directorial and creative perspective, Burned continues my and builds off of my experience with stop motion animation. It’s a technique that I’ve been using since I was only 11, back when the a feature for it was included in the Nintendo 3DS. Throughout my time as a Media Study major at UB, I’ve used the technique in a few other student films, but never with this light painting style. Being a very time intensive yet rewarding filmmaking method, it is a style I plan to return to, and possibly expand on the story and visuals found in Burned.

Cydney Teeter

tISSUE

Cydney Teeter TISSUE Video

TISSUE is a short stop motion animation piece made with common household materials and my hand-drawn art on scraps of paper. It is the first-ever piece I have created with stop motion animation and inspired me to continue making more work in this style. The imagery used is meant to explore personal experiences with mental illness, particularly body dysmorphia and identity problems. This style of medium made it possible to breathe life and meaning into doodles and recognizable textures like cardboard and children’s letter beads. The audio of the film is an ambient mix made to shift focus and careful attention to the images on screen. The theme in the film is a difficult one and leads to a degree of vulnerability. This is why the up close and personal style of collage stop motion animation was perfect to communicate these complicated concepts in an almost intimate manner.

Midiaou Diallo

who are you

Who Are You Video

The idea behind this project was to introspect, ultimately down to myself. However, I wanted to, at the same time, expand, and act as an interrogator, asking the various characters,“Africa”, “The Fulani”, “Black Men”, and “Myself”, questions about faults, or fears of their possible doing. For “Africa”, the aim was mostly to question “White superiority” sentiments that many Black Africans hold, in the forms of worship, comparisons to success of White Men, and so on. Further down, you come to “The Fulani”, an ethnic group to which I belong to. Colonialism and the introduction of Islam from the north ultimately completely reshaped Fulanicultures to a point of being unrecognizable. The question of why the youth speak the language ofthe Oppressor, and former Colonizer, France, more than Pulaar, is mostly asking, “what happens to you and your culture when there are no longer any ties left?” Further in again, mostly aimed at“Black Men” (and partially the Black community as a whole), who have adopted forms of homophobia, misogyny, and abuse, such as beatings of kids, from Oppressors, asking the question of who they are becoming. And lastly, “Myself”, not only concerning myself with said issues, but left wondering, what will eventually happen to our People? A fear, I can’t run from

Midiaou Diallo

bees

Bees Video

The point of this project was to help further put into question the image many Americans hold up in their minds of what the world thinks of them whenever “saving” them from dictatorships, or terrorism, and many more potential“threats”. Bees are a perfect way of communicating the American imperialist system, as bees fly to new places, and pollinate a new set of flowers, and eventually spread and colonize the region, forming their own hives in these areas. This issue of foreign policy is rarely enough brought up in American circles, however when it is, it's typically thrown onto the laps of republicans, most not realizing that the issue of imperialism is not a Democrat or Republican issue, or even solely an individual president’s, it is quintessentially American, quintessentially Western. What better way, I thought, to jab at that with a giant Attack on Titan/ King Kong-esque DonkeyElephant Hybrid that spits out its “DroneBees” (quite on the nose) off to “pollinate”(really just bomb) parts of the Southern Globe and eventually crumble under its own unsustainable weight?

Cristie Kwon

swish and flick

Cristie Kwon Video

This is a short experimental film of a series of magical moments by a magician. By swishing a magic want and casting a spell, times and spaces are transformed. With magic, the magician travels through teleportation with a particular device he made and sees what he changed and transformed through his power. Familiarness becomes distorted and transformed because of his power, which makes you feel both strange but intimate. Themain theme is focused on this phrase: magical moments happen in a blink of an eye. Speedy and repetitive gaps that give a sense of an old film projector bring you to instantaneous magical moments. Also, image collages will show a result of a magic spell, and the alternating appearance of Western and Asian women as they intersect will cause mysterious chaos. Through repetitive appearances of different moments, they present that you still sense a consistency although they are twisted. By layering and mixing energetic sounds, the film conveys an abstract atmosphere but intimate chaos simultaneously.

Cristie Kwon

surrender

Cristie Kwon Video

This is a short experimental film of a mysterious murder case in the fort during the war. A British soldier was killed by his friend, but for some reason, a terrified murderer tries to keep hiding this incident and to escape the camp. At the same time, the French sneak into the British base, and war breaks out, and in the midst of the hecticness, the murderer tries to sneak away. The location is the old fort located in Youngstown (near Niagara Falls and there are elegant and unique structures and objects in the buildings, which made me desire to explore this place and history. Through shooting various shapes and colors of windows, you can feel a sense of the 1975s, a period of French and British soldiers who arrived here and fought a territorial war. The exquisite harmony of sounds is based on multiple old war films, making you feel that this place is alive even though this historical place had already stopped being operated by soldiers.

Alexis Greene

Nature's Beauty

Alexis Greene Video

I made this experimental short film about walking in nature and the things that I saw. I wanted to focus on things that stood out that you may not see on an everyday walk. My idea was to make it abstract so you could make your own story and read into it any way you want. I wanted to make sure that it wasn’t too literal and had room to be read into. The way I did this was by overlapping videos and adding blending modes to give it different textures and moods throughout. It has a sense of craziness but alsomoments where it calms down.

Jedi Kang

creation

Jedi Kang Video

A wannabe filmmaker struggles to come up with an original story and even when he thinks he does, it turns out to be a movie that already exists. He locks himself in his room until he can come up with an original idea.I wanted to make a short film very badly this whole semester but didn’t have any good ideas. With the deadline approaching, I decided to just go for it and put everything that was going on with my life and turn it into a film. I got the idea of locking myself in my room from actually being sealed in my room when I came back to Korea last year due to mandatory quarantine. I am obsessed with Korean director ParkChan Wook’s films (Old Boy especially)and I have been trying to make films in my own style and wish to someday make something as iconic as his films. Also, I wanted to have full control of the lights for this project, so I bought a couple lights and shot everything night for day. Use of contrasting colors was on the list as well. The theme of this film is best reflected in the self-portrait that is shown throughout the film. I intended to not show my face in the same frame as the self-portrait until the story is almost over. It is what I feel like is going on inside my head when I get too carried away with myself and not realize that I am only repeating the stupid mistakes I have made before.

Fun fact: I had to go to the hospital at age 24 to get a piece of dumpling removed from my ear after filming

Haniff Clarke

Collage Animation

Haniff Clarke Video

The collage animation is mostly made up of complementary colors that are meant to visually encapsulate its viewers. It mimics sound visualizations and music video effects. A more mature version of the piece is in “Flow”. Although it is only made up of stop motion, The added visual effects used in the piece allow it to flourish

Haniff Clarke

flow

Haniff Clarke Video

Flow is a piece about getting into your flow state of mind. I got the name from the fact that I would zone out and draw for a few hours until it just started to flow out of me. A bit corny, but that is honestly why. It is a rotoscope animation mixed with stop motion accompanied by some added visual effects. There is around 700 frames worth of different drawings in the piece, each inspired by either contour drawings or things I enjoy in life. Feel free to pause during the sequences, the drawing range from very detailed to literal blobs.

Damahya Evans

This is my world

Damahya Evans Video

This Is My World is an abstract short about the everyday interactions I have with nature and everyday items, only seen through the lens of an abnormal and dream-like perspective. Several shots of the outside world, such as the sun in the middle of a clouded sky, birds dancing in the rain and trees dancing in the wind become something supernatural as the texture and layers turn transform each image seen. This piece takes you out of your normal perceptions of what is seen and forces you to interact with them as contortions that leave the mind wondering "What am I watching? What is it that I am seeing right now?", and takes you into a trance with its simple yet captivating background noise and effects. This is the world I have lived in; what seems like minuscule encounters with nature and everyday objects in the midst of a pandemic, turns into something fascinating and obscure.

Keenan Thompson

where is my mind?

Keenan Thompson Video

“Where Is My Mind?” is mainly composed of stop motionvideo using everyday objects and theirinteractions with each other. These objects have ahomely feel and a tie of childhood to them.These stop motion videos are contrasted with videosthat may suggest the stresses ofadulthood, showing that the fun times go fast andto enjoy them while they last. This balance orinteraction of video is why I chose the music, andtitle “Where is My Mind?”, because it showsmore of a focus on the fun things than the seeminglystressful ones. This suggests the answerfor the question we see in the title.

2021 DMS Courses

  • DMS 534 Media Archaeology
    5/11/21
    In this theory/practice seminar, students will interrogate the strain of scholarly and artistic practices concerned with the cultural and material histories of media technology known as media archaeology.
  • DMS 474 Media Theories and Approaches
    5/15/21
    Media theory investigates the technoculturaloperation of media, including media technologies and social practices. The basic question media theory must ask is “what is media?” If something is identified as media, is it always media or only under certain circumstances? For example, paint is a mediumwhen used for a painting, but what about on a wall or in a can? Air is a medium for sound and music, but what about when the world is silent? Fiber optic cables, wifi signals, and the internal operations of a computer delivering a film on a laptop are media, but so is the film. How do they relate? Conversely, what is not media?
  • DMS 606 Sound and Space
    5/11/21
    In this course, students interested in learning more about music and sound, and sound’s relationship with and existence ins pace, have been experimenting with creating virtual spaces. (This was particularly germane since the class took place over Zoom, an entirely virtual space.) We have analyzed how sound behaves in real spaces, both natural and human-built, with the goal of understanding how these spaces influence sound, and human perception. 
  • DMS 435/535 Scriptwriting
    5/15/21
    In this production workshop students concentrate on writing and editing script elements for all kinds of media including film, video, game, installation, AR, VR location- or web-based projects. The course explores traditional and experimental methods for generating and structuring text for any genre of fictional, documentary or hybrid work. Scripts include original writing, interviews, collaged or found fragments - which may be performed, heard or displayed in the final piece.
  • DMS 201 Green Media
    5/11/21
    This course analyzes fictional and documentary media that investigate our relationship to nature: climate change, pollution, environmental justice, wildlife extinction. The course interprets the word media broadly to include film, games, social media, media-art, big data visualization, simulation and sensing. It examines the consciousness-raising power of film, media and journalism; traces the ecological impact of our obsession with the latest media device; and ponders the relationship between our feelings about our changing planet (denial, engagement, optimism, hopelessness) and our actions.
  • DMS 103 Basic Video (Section 2)
    5/12/21
    This course provides an introduction to the technical and aesthetic practice of video production and post-production, with a critical eye to both form and content. Through lectures, readings, exercises, and projects, as well as screenings of historical and contemporary film and video work, students will gain an understanding of film and video language and explore conceptual strategies for the development of creative approaches to digital video making.
  • DMS 341: Intermediate Video
    5/13/21
    This course took place in the fall of 2020 and was an intensive workshop in fiction film production, with an emphasis on both hands-on practice of fiction filmmaking and in-depth study of the art of fiction filmmaking. 
  • DMS 418/518 Landscape Projections
    8/18/22
    “Landscape Projections” is an advanced special topics course exploring landscape as a medium, predominantly through the lens of time-based media. “Projections” implies cinematic presentation, but we expand this idea of projection (from Latin projectio(n-), from proicere ‘throw forth’), exploring ideas around forecasts, mappings, visions, and transmission, as we consider a wide range of artists and filmmakers re-envisioning both the natural and manufactured landscape through cinematic geographies and spatial practices.
  • DMS 462/562 Game Design
    5/12/21
    DMS 462 is a production course that allows students to explore the fabulous and sometimes frightening world of Game Design. Games are all around us in modern culture, ranging from video games to board and card games to sports to politics (Game of Thrones, anyone?) and beyond. 
  • DMS 448 Games, Gender & Culture
    5/12/21
    DMS 448: Games, Gender And Culture provides a comprehensive investigation of the emerging field of Games Studies, the critical analysis of games and interactive environments made possible by the computer. We will address different theoretical perspectivesthat view games and gaming as historical, social, cultural. aesthetic, technical, performative, and cognitive phenomenon. 
  • DMS 103 Basic Video (Section 1)
    5/14/21
    Basic Video is a beginner level production class on the uses of digital video, moving image, and media as a medium of artistic expression and communication. There is a mixture of history, theory, artistic practice, technique, analysis, and there is a distinctive focus on learning while making.
  • DMS 480 Social Media & Networks (Section 1)
    5/21/21
    In this online course, we will learn about, critique, and create social media and networks theory. Through media theory and case studies, we will analyze social media and networks; through online discussion, we will develop our ideas; and finally, through creation we will implement our learning into action. By the end of the course, you will have a better understanding and will be able to critically read, analyze, and write about social media from a variety of perspectives. Along with rigorous reading and writing, students will engage through creative making and collective presentations. In doing so, we adhere to learning through creating.
  • DMS 213 Immigration & Film (Section 2)
    5/21/21
    This course offers an introduction to South Korean drama and cinema with attention to
    Korean culture and history, TV/cinema/visual cultural analysis, and within the contexts Korean cultural global reach also understood as Hallyu or the Korean Wave. Students will study South Korean drama and film through thematics such as historical development, aesthetics, genre, auteur theory, stardom, subtitling, and the politics of distribution.
  • DMS 598 Project Supervision
    5/12/21
    Graduate Student Project Supervision taught by Margaret Rhee
  • DMS 342 Intermediate Documentary Workshop
    5/13/21
    Intermediate Documentary is an intensive workshop in nonfiction film production, with an emphasis on both hands-on practice of documentary filmmaking and in-depth study of the art of nonfiction filmmaking. Production projects helpedstudents develop conceptual and technicalproficiency, including knowledge of the development, production, and post production ofnonfiction films. Readings, writing assignments, and class presentations will deepen students’understanding of nonfiction filmmaking and storytelling.
  • DMS 441 Advanced Video Production
    5/14/21
    This production course is designed to build on and further students’ conceptual and technical skills in video production. Through a combination of in-class workshops and exercises, assigned projects, and close attention to visual, creative motion picture ideation, students will strive to produce thoughtful, personally meaningful, technically proficient videos. 
  • DMS 302 Experimental Moving Image
    5/14/21
    “Experimental Moving Image” is an intermediate level undergraduate production class introducing students to alternative approaches to the moving image, from abstraction and collage, personal documentary and hybrid narratives, to stop-motion and video installation, across single and multiple screens.