Thursday, 17 October 2013

Back to the old school....

So today Phase 2 of the project kicked in, and was the first workshop session that myself and the other Halewood based artist, Barry Worrall, delivered with the participants at Halewood Academy Centre for Learning, Halewood, Knowsley, Merseyside.

The Academy is on the site where both Barry and I went to school (formerly Halewood Community Comprehensive School), which is why we feel its important to go in and create something here in our own community.

Today was also the last day of the school term, so with just 7 participants, it wasn't as well attended as we'd hoped, although surprisingly, 6 of the participants were boys, and I always assumed it would be the girls who were the keenest to participate in these sort of art projects.

Barry and I introduced ourselves and our individual practices and the project we're doing. In this Phase, we're aiming to collaborate with the participants to create audio/visual installations from the video of the flamenco routine I learned, for an exhibition at the school starting November 19th, the 50th anniversary of Carmen Amaya's passing, focussing upon a different culture and ideas about identity within the outcomes.

When I spoke about Carmen Amaya and showed the class some images of her, one of the lads asked if it was a man or a woman, which I was surprised at but glad they had questioned this.

Then we introduced the group to basic rota-scope animation techniques by projecting the images of the video footage from the filmed routine (from Monday) and tracing around 4 individual frames with charcoal onto tracing paper.

Barry Worrall guiding the participants through the first session task

By photographing each frame and importing them into i-movie (changing the duration of each clip to about 0.4 seconds), the participants created basic animations so that they could understand the technique.

Though it was just a small session, we got great, positive, feedback from the participants, with a resounding YES, that they would come back to the next workshop to starcreating the real installations. I think more will turn up next session after the half term and there's lots of ideas for what the outcomes could be but this is also about process too, so it will be interesting to see what else the participants come up with.

Planning for the actual 'vision' for the exhibition and celebration day will also be underway this week, so not a bad start to this Second Phase at all.

Still missing Barca, but things keeping me busy here.

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