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Hi! I am glad to publish one of the first collaborative art projects that I participated in. Please comment, Sergey and I will be glad to hear any criticism to improve our future work!

Sergey Arkhipenko - text

Alexey Arkhipenko - music, video

To create this piece I divided a poem into 4 parts and created a scheme, representing atmosphere and feeling of each part, as well as some music ideas in graphical form. There was no graphical representation of Associations section until I finished the piece (only question mark).

Sample libraries used: Chris Hein - Bassoon, Native Instruments - String Ensemble

Please find sheetmusic and more information here: http://arkhipenko.weebly.com/music/virtal-the-witch

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Very well done, the music could stand alone but works with the visual as well. I have a little trouble making a meaningful connection between the visual scenes and the words, so that made the connection between those and the music hard also.

But as I say it does work for me as is, probably because the three elements are well done individually and I'm in a mood to accept the combination uncritically.

Ingo Lee, thank you for your reply.

This is how I selected video for the text:

1. Contemplation - lake.

2. Questions, by-passers - ducks.

3. Communication turndown - rain and puddle.

4. Associations, outcast - reflection of a tree in a puddle.

5. Escape, contemplation - sky with clouds.

Can you select elements that are poorly connected?

As I said, "I have trouble making a meaningful connection between the visual scenes and the words,  . . . "  You can say, "Well this Ingo he's not too perceptive, this is not a valid criticism", and I promise you I won't doubt your judgement or be offended.

Or you can say, "Well some of my viewers may not understand things the same way that I do, perhaps there's a way to do this differently, I'll think about it."

I've tried to give you an honest and helpful criticism.  What you do with it is of course up to you, but please keep in mind that I also said that I thought your work was very well done.


Alexey Arkhipenko said:

Ingo Lee, thank you for your reply.

This is how I selected video for the text:

1. Contemplation - lake.

2. Questions, by-passers - ducks.

3. Communication turndown - rain and puddle.

4. Associations, outcast - reflection of a tree in a puddle.

5. Escape, contemplation - sky with clouds.

Can you select elements that are poorly connected?

Ingo, thanks for explanations. I was just thinking if you could give more details about the problems that you spotted - that is why I gave details about the videos. But this is not required of course, your help is already appreciated!

Bob, thank you so much for your honest and detailed comment.

We obviously have some typos, that will be corrected.

I will leave the topics of "why beach" and "why witch" to Sergey.

When you have to accent video and avoid distraction from video, you should not give music an important role. But this is only in case you need to avoid this distraction. In our case I do not consider video to be more important than music. All three parts are important (text, video and music). Using these three planes, I compose a video+text+music structure contrapuntally: at some moments one of the planes drives more attention then the others. The connection between the planes is also variable: at the end the connection is the strongest and in the middle the connection is not so strong. Moreover, the idea of the third part is weakening all the connections, including the connections between the planes and connection between the words and notes: comprehensibility of text, music and video separately. This way we can create an envelope of coherence, which decreases in the middle and increases in the end.

Actually, I do not feel like creating an absolutely transparent, clear and plain product. For me more interesting is to combine clear (structured, logical) and unclear (intuitive, abstract, absurd) elements in a product. On the other hand, I am of course interested in developing in both directions - so I of course want to make clear elements more clear. For example, do you think the fourth part (which has to be most clear) can be changed to be more clear?

By saying "more done visually" - do you mean more moving, more changes in the video? What would you change in the video?

I am currently working on dynamic photography concept: you can see that videos that I create are like photos, but have a little (or more) motion, which gives life to them. This results in a dynamic slideshow effect. This does not mean that I do not want to shoot different video, I just have not thought about other ways yet, because dynamic photography so much overwhelms, overfills me emotionally. I feel like I guide people on a journey to magical places with these dynamic photos + music + text. All people have their own perception and not everyone will feel what I feel.

I think we can agree that although there is a connection between your words and images, it is a bit abstract. I know in my own work I assume that the viewer will share my insights more than they really do, and even though I know that they often don't, I still use abstractions because I'm afraid of being too obvious, I'd rather be 'artistic'.  I think, "Well look at Picasso, everybody likes him, right?" This is a problem we all face, I don't have an easy answer.

One suggestion I do have would be to use a singer or spoken word artist, either in addition to or instead of the printed lyrics. I think this would help.  I believe our minds are conditioned to gather more meaning from the melodic quality of vocalization rather than the reality of the printed word. Have you ever loved a song only to be disappointed when you read the lyric sheet? I know I have.

I also think you need some actual human beings in your images.  Your work addresses the human condition, I think that will help make it more meaningful.

Alexey Arkhipenko said:

Ingo, thanks for explanations. I was just thinking if you could give more details about the problems that you spotted - that is why I gave details about the videos. But this is not required of course, your help is already appreciated!

Ingo, I do not see this abstract/clear dualism as a problem or fear. 

Do you want your works to be absolutely clear? Then they will become pop-art. Do you want your works to be pop-art? If yes, do it.

Do you want your works to be absolutely abstract? Then they will become elitist and ultra-avangarde. Do you want your works to be elitist? If yes, do it.

Usually I want to be somewhere in between: I do not want total clearness but I do not want total abstractness.

What seems interesting is to create total clearness or total abstractness for some section, because these both have a powerful effect.

Thank you for an idea of singer or spoken work artist.

As for human beings - to me it seems that this piece is about the witch, not about human beings who surround her. They do not play an important role. That is why I do not think that I need them in video. I create a picture that a witch sees and human beings are being replaced with ducks.

Bob, this is an interesting question between listener (viewer) freedom and grasping attention. The way it is now, viewer has freedom and he is not very much engaged into the video. I like the idea of telling the story more obviously and making viewer want to read, look and listen and I will use it in my future videos. Thank you for it. On the other hand, this idea does not seem to combine good with my concept of dynamic picture. Probably, I will create some section of the video using a different approach from dynamic picture, where viewer will be more engaged.

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