Stanley Kubrick Archive – severed head

31 03 2010

Amy Robinson, VADS Collections Manager, wrote the following tweet yesterday: Last week the Look-Here! project team saw a severed head at the Stanley Kubrick Archive:
I mention it here in the context of the visual impact of the object.
The University of the Arts London archive table was laid out with photographs from A Clockwork Orange (1971) and research material from Barry Lyndon (1975), amongst other items, so it was amazing, but really what stood out most of all was the life-like model of a severed head that was produced to be used in the film Full Metal Jacket (1987).
It can be hard to beat the impact of real objects.

Digital Film and Screen Art

31 03 2010

Yesterday I interviewed Rosie Gunn, Senior Lecturer in Digital Film and Screen Art at the University for the Creative Arts, Farnham campus. It was really interesting to open up the conversation to thinking about moving images and to talk about the role of technology in other areas of teaching practice as well.

Teaching with images – a holistic approach

31 03 2010

The current research project is short and sweet hence the need to narrow the focus to image presentation software. However at the same time in the back of my mind I am aware of the need to take a holistic approach looking at everything required in order to effectively support teaching with images.
Some issues and thoughts:

  • Copyright is the biggest issue for education in the UK, next to copyright, issues about image presentation software pale into insignificance.
  • My final report will emphasize the good work already done by the Visual Arts Data Service (VADS), for example, the Digital Picture, and Picshare UK, other endeavors, and our current project Look-here!
  • In addition to the project’s literature review looking at existing work in this area, there are also a number of organisations who have long term relationships with VADS, two of the most relevant to this project are: the Association of Curators of Art and Design Images (ACADI), and the Art Libraries Society/UK & Ireland Visual Resources Committee
  • Further to the Enhancing VADS project, I will also seek to explore how the VADS light box could be further developed in order to deliver presentations.
  • It doesn’t matter how good the software is if you don’t have the correct hardware in place and working properly.
  • It doesn’t matter how good the software is if the IT training is not appropriate for the visual arts and/or the software’s full potential is not realised.
  • Ultimately none of the software, hardware, IT skills, copyright issues etc are as important as the teacher/lecturer.

Myojin Curator of Italian Painting 1500-1600

31 03 2010

Last Friday I was privileged to be able to interview Carol Plazzotta, Myojin Curator of Italian Painting 1500-1600 at the National Gallery, London.
In my previous role of Slide Librarian (job-share) at the National Gallery I had assisted Carol Plazzotta in obtaining images for a couple of presentations so it was very interesting to be able to follow-up and ask specific questions relating to image presentation software.

Fashion Promotion and Imaging

31 03 2010

Last Wednesday I began my case studies by interviewing Jules Findley, Course Leader for Fashion Promotion and Imaging at the University for the Creative Arts, Epsom campus.
I also met with Kristy Widdicombe, Faculty Librarian For Fashion and Management, who used Adobe Presenter with Adobe Captivate last year to produce a learning and teaching object on ‘research’.
Kristy introduced me to Neville Kemp, Careers Adviser with the University’s Careers Service, who gave me a really useful demo of the Wimba Classroom software that they are trialling at the moment. Our conversation also raised issues to do with the role hardware has to play in multimedia presentations.

Presentation Techniques

24 03 2010

Today I am also thinking about approaches to giving a presentation, rather than the software itself.

PechaKucha 20 x 20 – a simple presentation format where you show 20 images, each for 20 seconds, the images advance automatically as you talk.

Presentation Zen – Garr Reynold’s blog on issues relating to professional presentation design

Something I have been aware of years ago, but only just remembered:
TED – the world’s thinkers and doers give 18 minute talks based around the concept of ‘ideas worth spreading’


24 03 2010

As a PC user I did not want to forget developments with Mac software. iPad is the latest ‘magical’ gadget from Apple, and it was interesting to see how they have developed a new version of the Mac presentation software, Keynote, especially to work with the new iPad’s Multi-Touch technology. An iPad can also be plugged into a projector to give a proper presentation.

Plus, two phrases used in the promotional video about iPad were:
“…I don’t have to change myself to fit the product, it fits me…”
“…you don’t even think about it, you just do it…”

Case Studies or Surveys?

23 03 2010

Over a week ago, Karen Paton, the University for the Creative Art’s Academic Developer in Learning and Teaching Research reminded me to look at the interviews I have scheduled, and consider whether they are really case studies, or in fact more likely to be surveys.

Karen lent me a copy of ‘Doing your Research Project’, by Judith Bell (4th ed. 2008), and sent me a photocopy of a chapter on case studies in ‘Researching Learning in Higher Education’, by Glynis Cousin (2009).

I have also been reading material for the literature review and need to update the references section on the blog.

4D images

23 03 2010

I should have made this post on 4th March, when this email conversation took place. Dr Bentkowska-Kafel emailed me about 4D images: “…as 3D doesn’t cover the dynamic and interactive character of time-based graphics.” It was a shame that 3DVisA was only funded for three years. Dr Bentkowska-Kafel tries in her own time, to maintain some of the resources, in particular the online index of 3D projects.

Dr Anna Bentkowska-Kafel
3DVisA Research Fellow
(May 2006-April 2008)
Centre for Computing in the Humanities
King’s College London
e-mail: Anna.Bentkowska AT

Still-, moving-, and 3D-images

3 03 2010

Today at the University for the Creative Arts research seminar I was asked if I was going to include moving images. I was also asked, via email, whether I was considering 3D images.

At VADS over the years we have had many discussions about representing real world objects as digital images, and whilst you can have detail views, it is not quite the same as being able to rotate and view an object. I have been reminded of the work done by the 3D Visualisation in the Arts Network, and the excellent Computers in the History of Art conferences.

In answer to the questions, my focus is primarily still images, but I would hope to extend this research to moving and 3D images as part of a future research proposal. I am sure I will also find cross-overs with these areas which will be noted in the final report.