Slight of Hand

The Blue Egg

There’s a good reason why single frames captured from a movie are called stills. The movie moves, while the still… well… keeps still.  It is a moment paused for all eternity so that we may go back to it again and again, examining every detail as if searching for the answer to an unasked question.  But what happens when we subvert the still image and transform it into something more than what it represents on its own? How does the narrative change?

Recently I’ve been experimenting with animation for two of my projects, Mixed States, and Project Sage Nu. While I have experience with video and Final Cut editing software, I also find simple flip books intriguing—maybe because there is an element of mystery to them. A similar effect sometimes happens while browsing through your own photos on the computer—suddenly the people in a series of photographs taken within seconds of each other start to move. I love it when that happens, which is how I became interested in the mechanics of GIFs (Graphics Interchange Format).

Today my goal was to learn how to make GIFs from scratch in Photoshop on my desktop instead of using apps on the iPad (see my last post, There’s an App for That). SUCCESS!!! I am officially one step closer to realizing a particular animation I envision for Projet Sage Nu. The next stage will be to incorporate recorded audio. Boy, this is exciting stuff!!

Thanks for dropping by, and please feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment section below. Do you think the GIF above fits with my PSN project, or does it have an entirely different narrative of its own? Is this the beginning of a third project? Hell, why not! 🙂

Author: Michelle LaRiviere

Michelle is a multidisciplinary artist, curator, writer, and teacher. She is also a Reiki Master and life coach, specializing in guided soul work. Her art has been exhibited nationally in Canada, as well as in Italy, the UK, and the United States. Her practice includes traditional as well as digital media.

4 thoughts on “Slight of Hand”

  1. I feel the photographs in the are well done but animation may not suited to PSN as it doesn’t seem to center around the themes of feminine beauty and ageism. At a glance the model appears ageless and the animation is interesting but other than the photos possibly being from the same session, the connection isn’t so obvious. If I think about it, yes I could probably convince myself that there is but this is my first impression.

    Some gif/photographer artists that may interest and inspire you:
    Their executions both differ but I feel that smooth looping works well in GIF animations. Kind of produces a hypnotizing effect on the viewer.

    1. James, you are right!! Using photos from the same session doesn’t necessarily mean that the new work fits with the original PSN project thesis. I realized it afterwards… the narrative for this GIF is something else altogether. The concept of “egg” and all that it symbolizes comes to mind. This was a first attempt [in Photoshop] made with available material…

      THANK YOU for sending those two links! I am absolutely in love with Teknari’s work!!! My brain is on fire right now… can’t wait to get going!

      Thanks so much for the feedback and taking the time to share your thoughts! By the way, I love your work! I haven’t painted in a couple of years… new media-based art has me captivated.

      1. Hi Michelle, thanks for saying that I’ve actually been moving away from digital painting but I feel new media is something I would experiment with at some point. I’m glad the links helped! (Teknari is also a personal favorite of mine too) Looking forward to seeing how your project develops!

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