Virtual Gallery Reflection

Introduction
This is my reflection on the virtual gallery I created to show off the work I have done during this course. The virtual gallery can be seen in the video above and was created in the Unreal engine.

Skills
I have demonstrated many skills in creating my virtual gallery. I have shown 3D modelling skills as some of the objects in my virtual gallery were created using 3DS Max, such as the microwave and television. By including these objects in the gallery I am showing that I can use 3D modelling software. Other skills I have shown are recording, editing, and manipulating sounds including the voiceovers I have in the gallery that I recorded and the sounds I created for the Limbo paper dub that I recorded and edited. Also I manipulated sounds to create the Walla that is heard from the TV. These show that I am capable of basic editing and manipulation of sounds. I also demonstrate texturing skills as I applied textures to the rooms in the gallery and to objects in the gallery, including the microwave, TV, and the photo frames. I also show skills in scripting as I set it so the doors could be opened and closed by pressing E on the keyboard. The virtual gallery also demonstrates my Photoshop skills with the montage I made and the photo that I added a tilt shift effect to, as well as the logos I created for Facebook. I also demonstrate skills in Unreal engine as I placed the doors and set it so they could be opened and closed. I was also able to demonstrate skills in Premiere as that is the program I used to create the Limbo movie in my gallery. I also demonstrate skills in animation with the doors as I had to create the movement for them opening and closing. I also show photography skills with the photos that are on display in my gallery.

Industry sectors and Job roles
These skills are applicable to a wide range of industry sectors due to convergence making the sectors more similar. As Unreal engine is used to create a lot of triple-A games the skills I have obtained in Unreal would be very helpful in that sector, as would 3D modelling skills as games require 3D objects. Sound skills are applicable to all sectors as they all need sound, whether it be for a game or app sound is very important and my skills at being able to record, edit, and manipulate sounds will be useful. Animation skills also apply to all the sectors as games require animations and apps also have animations.
Game Developer is one of the jobs these skills prepare me for. The pros of this job role include, being able to use my various skills to create something people will like, being able to improve my skills as I work, be able to learn new skills in different pieces of software. The cons of this job include, possibly having to work unusual hours to fix any potential problems and meet deadlines.
Another job these skills prepare me for is Audio engineer. The pros of this job are getting to create different sound effects in order to create different moods. The cons of this job are not being able to work with anything but sound, and having to work to what the developers want so there isn’t much freedom to create different sounds.
Another job role is photographer. The pros of this job are I would be able to take photos of whatever I wanted and would be able to use my skills to take different kinds of photos and create different effects with those photos. The cons of this job are I will have to be looking out for a photo opportunity all the time and some photos may not appear the way I want them so it could take a while to get a photo I like.

Deadlines
I completed my work and met deadlines by managing my time well and making sure I finished any uncompleted work as soon as possible so that they did not start to pile up. I also had a checklist of work I needed to complete so that I could keep up to date and would know exactly what I needed to do and what I had already done.

Safe working practices
I ensured safe working practices when creating my gallery by taking regular breaks at one hour and fifteen minute intervals. I also did not sit too close to the computer when working so that I did not damage my eyes. I ensured the chair was adjusted correctly so that there wasn’t any unnecessary stress on my body. I also did not eat or drink near the computers so that I couldn’t damage them in a way that might damage me or someone else and I made sure that any wires from the computers were not in positions to trip anyone up.

Audio and visual language
With the lighting in my gallery I made the lights bright in the photo gallery, 2D room, and 3D room to create a calm, safe environment as that is how I wanted people to feel in those rooms. I also selected calm ambient music to play in those rooms and I used bright textures on the walls and floors. In the cinema room I used very little lighting and made the lights I did use dark to create the mood of being in an actual cinema, and I used colours you would normally see in cinemas, such as dark reds and black.
If I wanted to change the themes in the rooms I could use more intense ambient sound and have darker textures and lights in the room if I wanted people to feel slightly afraid while walking around.

Research
In preparing my virtual gallery I did secondary research and looked at real life examples of photo gallery’s and cinemas to get an idea of the mood they had and how I would set up my gallery. Using this information I created mood boards for each of the rooms showing the examples to give people an idea of the mood I wanted to create in my gallery and show what kind of colours and textures I would be using. I also crated an asset table and researched potential ambient sounds I could put into my gallery to help create the mood I wanted.
I used this research by using similar textures and colours in my gallery that are used in real life galleries and cinemas to create a similar mood to them. My sources were very useful in helping me complete my project as I already knew what textures and colours I wanted to use in each room and knew what ambient sounds I wanted which meant I was able to complete it quicker than if I had to search for textures and sounds while creating the gallery.

Evaluation

I would improve my research methods and preparation in the future by getting more variety of examples so that I have more of a choice and have more ideas for what I could do with my gallery.

 

Virtual Gallery

For this task we were comparing the experience of actually visiting a museum or gallery to the experience of a virtual gallery and discuss the pros and cons of each. We did this task as it relates to the work we are doing which is creating a virtual gallery showing off our work so we need to know the pros and cons of a virtual gallery.

There are many pros and cons of visiting a museum or gallery in real life and of using a virtual gallery to view the artwork. When discussing these pros and cons it is important to consider all the factors, such as the scale of the object you are looking at.

Pros of visiting museum:

The pros of actually visiting a museum include you can actually see the scale of the pieces of art you are looking at, for example most people have only seen the Mona Lisa through pictures online and don’t know the actual scale of it, but by actually going to the Louvre you will be able to see the actual scale. This is the same for all pieces of art and you can’t tell the scale without actually seeing it in real life.

Another pro of visiting a museum in real life is you get the full visitor experience that is not available elsewhere. You can also see the curation of the exhibits when you go in real life which you can’t see in a virtual gallery. Actually seeing the object in real life offers a much better experience than looking at an image of it and your interpretation of the art can change depending on if you’re viewing it in real life or in a virtual environment as in real life you can see much more and it creates different feelings.

Also viewing art in real life means you can see all the finer details of it, such as the brush strokes on a painting, which gives you a greater understanding and appreciation for the art.

Cons of visiting museum:

However, there are also cons to visiting a museum in real life. These include;
The cost of visiting a museum can be quite high if you do not live close to it and have to travel a lot to get there. This could potentially keep people away from visiting museums and galleries.

Another con is some museums and galleries do not have disabled access, for example the Louvre does not have much wheelchair access and because it is so busy it would be hard for a person in a wheelchair to get around the museum and see the art pieces. This means that disabled people can not actually go to museums in real life and have to find other ways to experience the art.

Pros of virtual gallery:

One option for disabled people to view artwork is a virtual gallery. The pros of this include it is considerably cheaper than actually going to a museum. For example the Louvre guide for the Nintendo 3DS is only about £15 which is a lot cheaper than travelling to the Louvre and paying for admission, which would be quite a lot of money as you would have to pay for transport and accommodation as well as the admission fee.

Another pro of a virtual gallery is you can view a wide range of the exhibits in the comfort of your own home. This is much easier than going to the Louvre and can be available to everyone. This means that you can look at the exhibits without the huge crowds of people who could distract you or obscure your view of something.

Also a virtual gallery has detailed audio and video descriptions of what you are looking at, so you can learn more about the exhibits without having to go and see them in real life.

Cons of virtual gallery;

Virtual galleries also have cons. One of these is you can’t get any sense of scale when you are looking at a virtual image of an exhibit which can affect your interpretation of it.

Another con of virtual galleries is not all of the exhibits are available to view in them. For example the Louvre guide for Nintendo 3DS only has over 600 images of the exhibits compared to the 70,000 exhibits that are actually on display at the Louvre. This means that you are not seeing all the exhibits when you use a virtual gallery and the only way to see them all is to actually go to the Louvre museum.

Conclusion:

Going to a museum and using a virtual gallery both have their various pros and cons and there are benefits to using both but you are able to see much more and learn more by actually going to a museum in real life. From my experience of going to museums and galleries I think it is much better to go visit a museum in real life as you can get close to the objects and see all their details and you can see their scale much more accurately.

 

Visual Research Tools

In the documentary Tim’s Vermeer, Tim Jenison attempts to find out how Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer created his art, and then attempts to recreate one of Vermeer’s paintings using a method he thinks Vermeer used.

While attempting to find out how Vermeer painted Tim explained how a Camera Obscura works and that it was unlikely Vermeer would have used one to paint because of the difficulties of matching the colour of the image projection to the paint you are using.

One painting method Tim used was to have a picture being reflected off a mirror over a canvas that he was painting on. This allowed him to see the canvas and the images reflection at the same time and so could match the paint to the colour in the image. He did this by experimenting with different colours until the edge of the mirror could not be seen when looking at both the mirror and the canvas. He used this method of painting to paint three times and then decided this was most likely the method Vermeer used and decided he would use this method to recreate one of Vermeer’s paintings.

To get a better idea of what the actual painting looked like Tim went to look at the original in Buckingham Palace. To recreate the set of the painting Tim was hoping that he would be able to use the actual furniture from the painting but did not get permission to use it so he had to recreate the set in a warehouse. Tim had t make all the props himself and he did this by getting the measurements of the actual props and learning how to operate the machinery to make them. Before this he created models of all the props and the finished room in a computer programme and worked from there.

To fully recreate the room took Tim many months and he had to recreate the lighting from outside in the painting by putting cardboard cut-outs in front of the windows. Once he had done all this he could start the painting. This also took him many months to complete as he had to paint so much detail that he couldn’t see on the painting before he was looking at it through the mirrors he set up. Also he had to deal with factors such as the light playing tricks, which created something Tim called the Seahorse Smile effect, which created a curve on the painting where there should have been a straight line. Tim nearly missed this and would have made the same mistake as Vermeer and painted the curve but noticed it just before he started painting it.

Tim also had to deal with problems caused by the weather. As it got very cold in the warehouse he was painting in he decided to bring in a heater which was not safe to use indoors and was producing fumes that made Tim paint an elephant on the painting.

At the end of all this Tim had recreated Vermeer’s painting and it was almost impossible to tell the difference between the two and so this suggests that Tim was correct about how Vermeer painted.

Evaluation
I think the processes Tim used in order to recreate Vermeer’s painting were very good as he studied the painting for a long time and went to see the original so that he had the best idea possible of what he needed to do and the different techniques he used to actually paint meant he learnt about how Vermeer might have painted and meant Tim could prove that anyone can paint amazing pieces of art.

Reflecting on Feedback

For this task I took 3 photos, 1 abstract photo, one landscape photo, and one portrait photo. I then uploaded them onto Facebook in order to get feedback through the comments of the photos. This feedback gave me ideas on how I could improve the photos if I did this again in the future.

Most of the feedback I received was about improving the composition of the photos and the lighting of some of the photos could have been better, but the light quality was caused by the time of day I was taking the pictures. The feedback also said I should try and incorporate the rule of thirds into my images more, as that would improve them both in quality and would make them more interesting for people to look at. This feedback will help me with future projects as I will know what I should and shouldn’t do in order to take a good picture that uses the rule of thirds well.

Abstract feedback

Portrait feedback

Landscape feedback

This is primary research as I have taken photos and am getting feedback on them, so this is something I have done rather than me using what someone else has done. Also this is also qualitative research as I am getting peoples feedback and their personal opinions on the photos so they are telling me exactly what I can do differently in order to improve the photos.

Facebook is not a very effective research tool as many people will just click the like button on things you are doing research for and this will not tell you what you need to know, for example liking one of the photos that I posted doesn’t tell me how I can improve it or what I did well so for this task likes would have not been useful to me. Qualitative research is a very effective research method as the feedback you receive can help you in the future and you can find out what people want from your products as it is a more personal form of research as people can give their honest opinions on things. This makes qualitative research more effective than quantitative research as you are able to find out exactly what people like and don’t like about something and you can find out what you can do differently to make it better, however with quantitative research you can just find out how many people like or dislike something and you won’t know what they liked or what they didn’t like, which means you can’t use that data to help you improve.

Evaluation
This task has taught me a lot about what an abstract photo is and how I can take one, as well has portrait and landscape photos. I have also learnt how I can improve the photos that I take in the future. I have also discovered that Facebook is not a very good research tool and there are more effective ones.