Koh Hui Yee (0336198)
Bachelor of Mass Communication
Digital Photography and Imaging
Notes and Exercises

Project 4 (Cinemagraph - Surrealistic Parallax)

Week 9 & 10 (13/06/20 & 15/06/20)

As a preparation for Project 4 (Cinemagraph - Surrealistic Parallax), Mr. Fauzi gives us a brief on it and encourages us to gain more ideas by looking for references on Pinterest. In week 10, Mr. Fauzi shares a few links regarding digital surrealism's videos with us. He also shows us some useful techniques in Adobe After Effects that we can apply in our final project during tutorial session. Simply put, I have learnt to use those techniques by trial and error after class. Yet I have also been reminded to make my composition stand out from the background while accomplishing this project as background is generally used to enhance the expression of creativity in most artworks.


Week 11 & 12 (22/06/20 & 30/06/20)

Today, Mr. Fauzi has a consultation with us for our project 4. 

696 - Just passing through…  👉 Visit @mr.splice to see the original images!!
Figure 1: Reference 1.
Figure 2: Reference 2.

In fact, I have found some references on Pinterest before I start creating my new design.

Figure 3: First Outcome.

Figure 4: Second Outcome.

Video 1: Second Outcome.

Video 2: Final Outcome.

During the first consultation session, Mr. Fauzi suggests me to make some changes on my composition which applies the real claw and shark so that they can look much more vivid and saturated. Besides, he teaches me to add keyframes, create mask and free transform some details such as mask path and position and scale of layers in After Effects during the second consultation session. Therefore, I've applied mask, position and scale in the shark layer so that the shark can naturally rise and fall along with the waves. While for the upper head section, I've applied position to make it move left and right just like the claw in the real machine. Furthermore, I've used the scale in the sea layer to make it move up and down.

On the other hand, let's delve into my design concept. As you can see, the claw is extended from my mind. Since I was young, I always had a dream that getting a shark doll from a claw machine. Therefore, I directly make my upper head as that claw machine. Yet the lower half of my head is actually like a cliff. The waves below will push the shark up and down as they rise and fall. When the shark approaches the claw, it is immediately retracted. I purposely create this motion just to describe the feeling of excitement mixed with little disappointment as I think I can get the shark doll, but it actually fails as all of these are only happened in my dream. Haha, does it sound like a lucid dream? What is more surprising is that the music playback button below is actually the clip button that is pressed in a claw machine.

In a nutshell, this playful design provides a moment of amusement. The appeal of playing claw machine is like entering a magic land. For that reason, the area around shark can also be seem as red to symbolise desire, energy and excitement. As such, I feel fulfilled when I manage to complete this project. It is hard work, but the sense of achievement is huge. Yet I truly appreciate Mr. Fauzi's time and effort in assisting me to improve my work and my After Effects skills as well. 


Week 13 (06/07/20)

This week, Mr. Fauzi has the final consultation session on project 4 with us. After that, we have submitted our work on Google Classroom. At the end of this semester, Mr. Fauzi also asks us to restructure our E-Portfolio contents based on the Google Classroom format. Thus, we are required to finalise our E-portfolio contents within week 13 and 14.


Week 14 (13/07/20)

Hooray, it is the last week for this semester! Today, Mr. Fauzi has a final consultation session on our blog. As I have already organised my blog with a good website navigation, thus I am encouraged to write a reflection to sum up the reward of learning for this semester.

Frankly, my learning progress over this semester is quite amazing, but the way I deal with this module (Digital Photograph and Imaging) fascinates me even more. As a mass communication student, I have to admit that I am not good at using Adobe Photoshop and I always feel far more frustrated. Fortunately, this module introduces me the use of Adobe Photoshop and After Effects that can encourage me to better express my vision and creative reinterpretation of the world through digital visual imagery. 

At the beginning, I find it difficult to catch up on the lesson as I am not quite familiar with the functions in Photoshop. However, I have spent more quality time to discover the functions by trial and error. On a weekly basic, I have mastered different skill sets in Adobe Photoshop (Brush, Layers, Blending Modes, Transform Tools, Colour Adjusting Tools). Yet I have also undergone practical assessments in the form of projects and exercises throughout the semester successfully

For the lecture and tutorial session, I greatly enjoy the process of developing project 2 (self-titled) and project 4 (cinemagraph - surrealistic parallax). It is because I am actually given an opportunity to express my creativity to design my own projects. It is very interesting yet challenging as I have to make some effort in figuring out how to play with a myriad of different layers to come up with my own favourite designs. Most importantly, I have realised that my participation in creating these projects completes the pieces. What I have created is actually a good representation in my purest of senses, in that the audience can literally see me in my work - not as an abstracted label of my body, mind or say, but my identity.

Moreover, I really love the process of creating project 2 (a self-cyborg) for the practical session. It encourages me dare to imagine the impossible and eventually turn the imagination to be a real design. I have so much fun starting from collecting cyborg ideas to partly transform them in Adobe Photoshop. In my opinion, it is definitely a complicated process. However, the entire transforming process is much more better and easier once I have mastered the skills including masking, layering, match lighting and so on. Yet this is my first attempt to create such digital stuff and what is even more surprising is that I have partly made myself as the cyborg successfully. Hence, this project has made me feel that I am technology which also can be considered as another means of expressing myself and experiencing the world in a totally different way. 

In a nutshell, I have gained a sense of accomplishment as I am now equipped with conceptual, practical and critical skills and knowledge of digital imagery, and learn to use Photoshop and After Effects to produce digitally generated and manipulated images including GIFs and animated videos. Besides, I have learnt to communicate well with Adobe Photoshop and Adobe After Effects and gained discipline-specific knowledge in these softwares. In view of this, I can now demonstrate creative use of these softwares to help promote or communicate my design concepts or solutions. In addition, my problem solving and critical thinking skills have been improved while I am trying to explore, generate and test a wide range of conceptual ideas. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect. As such, I will continue to improve my digital media skills to produce more design solutions at professional or industry standards in the future.


Project 1 (Week 1-5)

Lecture and Tutorial (Week 1-6) 

Project 2 (Part A: Week 6-8 / Part B: Week 6-10)

Project 4 (Week 9-14)

Practical (Week 11-14)