This summer I went to Krakow in Poland. Whilst over there, I went to the concentration camp Auschwitz. I was prepared for the scale of it, but not the reality. Seeing the camp in brightness of day and all its gruesome details really brought home to me the horror that the victims of the holocaust suffered. It really sparked a response inside of me. I had learned about the holocaust in school, but somehow it had seemed to have skimmed over the human element and the remorse I had felt visiting the place. I then began to question why this was. In Britain, we live in a very liberal society, and my generation has suffered no great hardship or ordeal in recent times. This has left my generation disconnected from attrocities that are happening elsewhere in the world, and have no way to relate. We live in a rather selfish and self absorbed culture, where we would rather sit on Facebook than pick up a newspaper and read about the conflict in the Middle East. It is easier to ignore the problem than to deal with it. Moreover this lack of involvement is only perpetuated more by government's (home and overseas) attempts to often misconstrue the truth and paint a veil over the reality of events, which only adds to the confusion.
For this semesters work, I have done a 12 week project on this idea. I have produced a campaign aimed at young people to think more about what is happening outside of our shores, to relate and be more aware of it. I considered possible vehicles to convey my ideas to my target market of 16-24 year olds. We have a society that is so absorbed in visual culture, that something has to really stand out to be effective. Being interested in motion based work, and realising that print doesn't always 'cut it' as a mouth piece to convey ideas on its own, I created a light show/moving graphics that 'spell out' the truth and the conflict in other places.
Whilst researching the project, I looked at how when something blue is put in a red light, it appears very dark. I then came across whilst researching another project illustrator Sophie Henson image's she had created by layering the colours blue and red. This then led me to create machetes for slides which I would use in my light show. One layer, red the other blue. On the red layer, I wrote a lie such as about the conditions of child soldiers in Burma and then on the blue layer the truth. When placed together the blue layer appears darker, making the truth therefore in escapable and unavoidable to accept the blanked of lies that attempt to skim over it (the red slide).
I designed a typeface that broke down shapes of letters which made the message more ambiguous which represents the breakdown in communication through the multiple messages told. I had my slides laser cut into acrylic and then projected through them to create a light show, that would be displayed in areas where my target market are likely to visit and use.
To support this, I had created a film downloadable to the Iphone (and other devices), where the viewer controls the speed of the film. Thus a swift movement over the screen would flick trough to images of the slides. However, when the user slows down the speed of the film, the slides are read, and the truth revealed. I also produced a book and posters to support the campaign, so that it was available in any format.
This is a film montage of the semesters work, including decision making, testing and filming of my work. I hope you enjoy seeing it as much as I enjoyed getting stuck into it.
Also in this post, are the posters I produced to support the campaign.
Copyright Charlotte Cooper 2010.