I decided to try out my classmates’ procedural art projects for fun. The first one I tried was procedural poetry by Hoc Nguyen. His rule was basically to pick the last word of every page in a single chapter. I decided to choose a random chapter out of the only novel I brought with me to my dorms: Mitch Albom’s The Five People You Meet In Heaven. The only way his procedural art didn’t work 100% for me was that there were no specific chapters in this novel, so I basically chose one of the “lessons,” and chose Lesson Three. My results were the following words in this order:
me hear night wind anymore moment later for never ourselves meet in sky her
After rearranging the words around several times, I came up with this:
In the night, me.
In the sky, her.
Hear the wind, for moments later
Our selves never meet
At first, I was expecting something that completely didn’t make sense, as these were words chosen at random. My results actually came as a surprise to me, since it actually made sense–opposite of my expectations. My rearrangement of these words came out to be slightly depressing but the poetry turned out to reflect some real emotions that human beings actually experience or think about. As a result, this poem turned out to be pretty meaningful and symbolic. In my perspective, I see the subject coping with the loss of a significant female person in their life, in that stage of grief of acceptance of their loss.
#2: MARI CHRISTY – PROCEDURAL DENIM
When I first saw Mari Christy’s procedural art, I was very excited to try it out. Thrifting and creating your own distressed bottoms was something I have always wanted to try, as it is a huge money saver from those destroyed jeans for $30 at the store! And as a result of mine, I loved it–I even think I found my new favorite pair of shorts. To begin this, I went through several videos on YouTube. Rather than just creating rips on denim, I decided to take this to another level and create some high waisted shorts. Honestly, thrifting was the most difficult part of this procedure because I wasn’t sure which pants would give me that high waisted look. In the end, I settled on this one. With scissors and a tweezer, cutting and pulling the thread from the denim was a tedious and long process, but it was easy. I followed examples of other shorts to see where I should create rips, and I also frayed the bottom and sewed it in a little bit to create a cuffed look. This took multiple washes (well just three actually), and I definitely loved my result!
#3: AMANDA BJORNSTAD – ALPHABET STORIES
This was an interesting procedure to me, and rather difficult towards the end. In the beginning, I wrote random words that first came to mind following the previous word, which made it easier for me as I saw a story forming already. It became difficult towards the end as I couldn’t think of words for the letters X and Z, so those were slightly modified after my story was written. The words I came up with were:
air bridge canvas dream enter ferryman gate horizon identity jolt kid lullaby music nurse overjoy phone question remember sleep time united valuable winter x-ray young Zaina
Here was my result:
Amy awoke with a huge gasp of air, confused of her whereabouts. Looking into the distance, she saw a bridge behind the heavy pink mist that filled her surroundings. It was all a painted canvas of warm hues to her. Was I dreaming? She wondered. Curiously, she crossed the bridge and entered a rocky, gray island. On it was an arrogant ferryman. Come, and I will take you across the gated horizon, he said eerily. A strange identity pushed her to step onto the boat, when suddenly the world swirled into a black hole. She suddenly jolted to her consciousness, finding herself on a hospital bed. A young kid had his head in his arms at the end of the bed, asleep to the lullabies playing from a nearby music box. People still use these boxes? Amy wondered. A nurse suddenly walked in, overjoyed, and woke the child up to phone his father. She was ambushed with hundreds of questions from the doctors and nurses, but all she could say was she didn’t remember anything. She had slept for a long time, but could now unite with her valuable family, they said. The coma lasted the entire winter since the crash, they said. It is 1965, and your daughter is miraculously still alive, doctors said as they showed her x-rays of the surviving child she was still carrying. She is lucky, as she is still young. They called her Zaina. Hearing that name, Amy looked into the mirror in sudden realization and saw no one else than her young mother.
This is basically a story of a girl who was on the verge of death, but was reincarnated into the past into her mother’s own body before her birth. Writing this was interesting as it made me realize how easily I could control the events in the story. I originally thought I would come up with a story that didn’t make sense, but as I continued coming up with words, it all eventually started to flow into something that came together on its own almost. Whether I wrote a good story or not, I enjoyed trying out writing in this fashion!
#4: CHRISTIAN POSADA – MUSICAL DRAWING
For my last activity, I tried out the musical drawing. I didn’t have white paper, so I had to resort to a white index card. I chose the song I listened to most at the moment, which was Alina Baraz ft. Galimatias – Fantasy, also because it was a song that had different tempos and good vocals. In the song, Alina Baraz’s voice would shift from low to high notes, which is where I noticed I created smaller squiggles/loops. Just like Christian, I noticed that my lines would follow the beat of the melody as well. It was a very interesting way of expressing yourself through music, especially in the choice of color. I tried to choose colors that would resemble a beach setting, which is what the song makes me feel I am in. In conclusion, this activity made me realize how much influence music could have towards art, as it really brings forward emotions that you put onto the paper in front of you.