Sunday, August 1, 2010

Audio and Programming for The Silent Witnesses

While I was making the project, I always imagined that I would combined all the videos in one single movie file with edited audio, I played it as a background, and then I placed the real-time capturing webcam image in the reserved black block position of the movie file. Until all the videos are done, I realized, it's impossible to put them into one single file and still maintained its looping, since the videos have very different length of duration. So, the solution is, to write a program that loops all the videos and also capturing the webcam image at the same time, meanwhile, it controls the audio.

The program is made with Processing. I included JMCVideo library for reducing the load of my 2008 small MacBook and this library also allows me to control the audio.

The requirement of the audio is to play the sound of one video for 30 secs, introducing a silence break with random duration between 2 sec to 20 sec, then it plays the next video for 30 secs, and so on. This 30 secs of sound makes the audience look for the source video of the sound(zoom in to one video), and while the silence intervenes, the audience loses the focus of the source(zoom out). This method creates a chance of letting the audience switch his/her focus through the videos and being able to make the combination of various videos, so that the connections between videos have the chance to be made. Besides, the channels of the audio are adjusted according to the virtual locations relative to the installation room. With the sound, a virtual surrounding of rooms will be created.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Installation

The Silent Witnesses: video installation from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The virtual space is created through CCTV images, sound and doors.

These videos are all the existing facts in the world, this world under the global food security policy. They are the representation of the surreal reality. There is no specific story to be told in each video, every video includes many aspects of the food security at the same time. But the hidden stories might be found, when you look at multiple videos at the same time, and different combination tells different stories in your mind.

The design reflects panopticon architecture and surveillance. Other than panopticon, as the visitor plays the observer in the central tower, he/she observes him/herself observing what he/she observes.

If you are interested about this project, you could download my thesis for more detail technical and theoretical documentation.


Actor(Alphabetical): David Black, Effrosyni Kontogeorgou, Nagehan Kurali, Yaroslav Sheptykin, Berit Slinwinski, Aneta Takhtamysheva, Gauvain Wiemer

Audio Recording: Vinicius Giusti

The Making of

The making of the virtual staged videos.

The Silent Witnesse: the making of from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The process of post production lasted 45 days of almost double-full time working. The standard procedure of these virtual-staged videos are: keying out color, creating shadow, lay in the virtual backgrounds, and final adjustments. The most time consuming part is to create the shadow, meaning tracing the part of actors' bodies that touch the ground, frame by frame.

FYI, the food in the banquet scenario are virtual, the food-dumping scenario is a part of a found footage, so, no food were wasted in this project.


The Silent Witnesses: Banquet scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: Crops storehouse scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: Factory scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: Farmer scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: Food dumping scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: Grocery shop scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: Hospital Scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

The Silent Witnesses: TV scenario from Chi-chun Chang on Vimeo.

and one of the scenario that is missing here, is the real-time capture image of the visitor looking at him/herself looking at the films.

Filming in the Bluebox Studio

The filming took place on 6th May afternoon in the bluebox studio in HfK Bremen. It took 5 hours to be done! (While the post production took 45 days...)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Spectacles sketch

and how it might look like in the monitor.

Sketch of exhibition room and virtual space plan

Exhibition roomVirtual Space Plan
(from Left-bottom room and following clockwise: While dinner time, a intruding clown distracts the whole family, meanwhile, his partner steals the food on the table, little by little; A fancy dining party with servant; A left-over collecting factory, the left-over is boxed and relabeled here; A old hospital room, one man is feeding another thin and week man with spoon, beside them, two skinny male bodied lied on the beds, already dried out; A crop storehouse, where a huge amount of crop stock are stored; A indoor farm. The seeds look like marbles and the soil is dried. The farmer cries with anger and grieve; The audience in the surveillance control room.)