On 3 October I visited Dr Serge Mostowy’s lab at Imperial College London.
The plan for the first day visiting the lab (after our initial R&D days last year) was to introduce the lab team to the film and give them some background on the way in which the project might work. It was important to make clear to the team members, not just Serge, the level of collaboration that would be needed so that they could opt out if they wanted to. I also wanted to share the basics of my practice with them, so that they had an insight into what I was doing as well as vice versa.
The first part of the day was spent talking about the way in which animation works (phi phenomenon) and how the development of pre-cinematic animation toys was the precursor of the development of moving image. We then had an animation workshop, using pre-cinematic devices incuding flipbooks, a zoetrope and a praxinoscope. The team members took to the process really enthusiastically and made some lovely movement loops. Some of them (including Serge) even began using their work as topics for movement; animating small sections of septin cage construction.
After lunch I presented a case study of a previous project I had been involved with, Shadow Stories. I chose this one because unlike the brain states I had been making work about in An Eyeful of Sound and my PhD study the archaeologists I worked with on Shadow Stories had no access to subjective experiences of their area of study. The scientists based their working theories about the past on informed conjecture, and presenting that in the film was part of my brief. There are parallels between the two projects so I went through the stages of the production process and explained how helpful an ongoing dialogue was to the successful conclusion of that film.
Finally we discussed our project, screening the images and clips made during the R&D phase and explaining to the team their role in the upcoming process. I gave the team members our revised overview of the project and explained that the following week I would be coming back to interview them and get them to do some more drawing.
Samantha Moore, October 2014
For more images of the project, visit Samantha Moore’s Flickr Album.