Class Work

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Thesis - May 1st, 2015

Click here to play Legend of Skaguay.

Play and Participation - April 22nd, 2013:

This is a design document for the Anasazi Village game, which can be found in the post below for Digital Storytelling on April 21st.

Digital Storytelling - April 21st, 2013:

The intent of this project is to provoke questions concerning the archaeological mysteries of the Anasazi, or Ancestral Puebloan people. While exploring the recently abandoned Puebloan village, the user may input their own questions to an unknown spirit who still lingers. Answers from the spirit will reveal new segments of the history surrounding the village, and ultimately unveil the reasons why it was abandoned. Observe your surroundings for clues to determine the right questions to ask.

Click here to play the incomplete, in-progress demo of Anasazi Village.

Play and Participation - February 19th, 2013:

This project was designed to encapsulate the concept of the avatar. Specifially, it sought to explore new ways in which users shape their avatar, and their avatar shapes them. I thought the subject of dreams - specifically those known as "lucid dreams," or dreams in which the dreamer is aware they are dreaming - would be of significant interest for exploration. So, I created the following "One-Page" Design Document for a game called Dreamscape. Dreamscape is intended to double as a guide to helping a user achieve lucid dreaming more regularly, and a customizeable gameplay experience where the player attempts to influence their dreams by playing. The unproven, hopeful result could be "pretty metaphysical," as my professor Ken said.

Digital Storytelling - January 14th, 2013:

The intent of this sketch was to represent myself in thirteen different ways (drawing on Wallace Stevens' poem "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird"). For my thirteen perspectives, I decided to use old footage of places I've visited and lived in, that have meaning to me in one way or another. The result is this music video, "Thirteen Places I Carry With Me."

Thirteen Places I Carry With Me from Jeffrey Turner on Vimeo.

Digital Imagemaking - Dec 12th, 2012:

The remaining entries of the Daily Creative Ritual can be found here!

Digital Imagemaking - Dec 12th, 2012:

The concept behind this project was to create an interactive overview of the fictional, haunted village of Oakfithe which I have been creating sketches for in my daily ritual. I had considered creating a similar interactive set of pages as a walkthrough of a single residence, but decided that I could achieve more in terms of scope by focusing on a singular overhead view of the village itself.

This overview started as a charcoal sketch (the original can be seen in the updated Daily Ritual Project above), and was scanned into Photoshop around becoming half-way full of images. This was meant to allow for the creation of purely digital elements along with the digitallly augmented original sketches. Oakfithe and it's "town-limits" is marked by its incomplete, black-and-white appearance. The upside to this is that all of the interactive, colored areas within the town are clearly demarcated to invite interaction.

I found this viewpoint of Oakfithe much more exciting to work with than the original village map (seen in the first installment of the Daily Ritual). This is partly thanks to the context it offers to the setting, remotely nestled beneath the mountains in the distance and vast forest between. It has also been much more exciting to work with this concept in the digital realm of Photoshop, where more menial and repetitive tasks such as drawing fields of grass can be done with ease and control. All the same, my favorite parts of this image retain the charcoal imprint of the original sketch - it seems to offer a warmth of character that cannot quite be replicated yet by the digital spectrum.

Click here to interact with the partially constructed Village of Oakfithe.

Programming Languages - Dec 5th, 2012:

The purpose of this project was to use and familiarize ourselves with a creative software of our choice, and then to give a presentation/tutorial on its uses to the rest of the class. Christian Erali and I chose Game Maker Lite for Mac, a free version of the more robust Game Maker Studio. Though a bit buggy and limited in terms of graphical prowess, GML for Mac turns out to be a great way to ease into the world of 2D game development for those new to programming, or for those who wish to avoid programming as much as possible thanks to its Drag & Drop system of object creation. Below are some notes from a handout that we gave to the class during our presentation, along with a screen-capture of the two levels of gameplay I created using GML (one limitation of the free version is that you cannot export executable files for the web - this is apparently not the case with the Studio version).

Game Maker Lite

The main strengths of this software include:

A) Beginners’ launch point for creating 2D platform, side-scrolling, and role playing games.

B) Nostalgia/”Remix” culture: Commonly used for re-makes and re-interpretations of popular classics.

C) Accessibility: Free software with a large and fairly active support network of users.

D) Drag-and-drop functions, variables, etc. for event-based programming; i.e. many short-cuts for those just getting started and not seeking a great deal of complexity yet.

The main drawbacks of this software are:

A) Flexibility/creative power is often traded for the software’s accessible features.

B) Graphics are sprite-based, and thus almost entirely limited to the 2nd dimension.

C) Frequent bugs and crashes (particularly in the Mac Lite version).

D) Poor documentation: Users who seek the next level of complexity and experimentation will soon find themselves sifting through the online forums provided, sometimes to no effect.

Some Definitions

Event: The programming approach used by Game Maker. Events are messages telling objects to behave or function a certain way.

Actions: The subset of characteristics that comprise an event. Without actions, there is no event!

Sprite: Sprites are the visual representations of all the objects in the game.

Object: The entities in Game Maker that perform actions/reactions.

Room: The space in which objects are instantiated.

Backgrounds: The pixilated art that can be used as a backdrop for any room.

Paths: A pre-determined movement an instantiated object will take through a room.

Digital Imagemaking - Nov 28th, 2012:

A sample motion tween created using Flash.

Programming Languages - Nov 28th, 2012:

Examples of our first foray into Processing, along with detailed commentary on the function of each line of code (this can be seen in the source code of each example). Click the link below to view.

Processing Work

Digital Imagemaking - October 17th, 2012:

Meant to be a daily, creative ritual, I have been creating sketches of the haunted village Oakfithe and its former population, and then creating background stories for the spirits that dwell there. The resulting web of character relationships has been fun from a narrative perspective, but I now doubt my choice of medium for the sketch art - namely charcoal and pencil. For the remainder of the practice, I may be transferring the sketchs over into Photoshop to see what creative outlets that opens. As far as the narratives themselves, I am giving thought to their shared elements (for one, they are all about people dying and becoming ghosts), and considering how those elements can be presented more in the corresponding art.

Village Map, Day 1

Village Map, Day 35

Wessex Stable

Fomenthal House

Back alley

Lord Errins

Oakfithe Cemetery

Rendel Fomenthal wanders Fox Glade

The Fomenthal House:

Nita was a short woman who tended her garden in the day, and cooked for her and her husband Rendel in the evenings. Rendel was a tall, skinny and equally kind man who repaired farming implements and other machinery for the village. One night, Nita fell ill of a rare fever, which even the village doctor, Humdal, had not the remedy for. Rendel pleaded for some sort of guidance on how to save his wife. With some reservation, Humdal described an uncommon plant called Witch’s Tear that grew by streams in the Fox Glade, a region of forest some days’ travel from the village. Humdal explained that he had none of the plant on hand due to the inaccessibility of Fox Glade, as well as the dangers lurking there - including wolves and venomous spiders said to be the size of rabbits. Rendel could not bare the thought of watching Nita die, and so left her in the Humdal’s care while he set out to Fox Glade, with only a small sack of food, a coil of rope, and his rifle.

Six days passed. Nita awoke in worse health each day than the last, and in a slightly more delirious state due to her rising temperature. Humdal had answered her murmurs and cries out for Rendel each evening. He felt increasingly helpless to ease her suff2ering. On the sixth evening, Humdal slept upright in a chair, and did not awake when Nita called for Rendel one last time.

Rendel never returned to the village, most guessing he had become lost or fallen prey to the wolves and spiders of Fox Glade. And so the Fomenthal house fell into disrepair, the garden grew wild, and Rendel’s tool shop fell silent.

Digital Imagemaking - October 3rd, 2012:

For this assignment, the concept of digital sampling was to be exercised through two portraits - one in a medium I was familiar with, and the other in an unfamiliar medium. Both portraits were to have a set of discrete values applied to their subject matter. For my familiar portrait, I chose to edit footage as a backdrop for audio clips of advice my Dad has given me over the years. I then rated the advice using four different criteria and averaged it on a ten-point scale.

For my second, unfamiliar medium, I chose to create a self portrait in Photoshop. This hollow profile is meant to serve as a chart, illustrating the mediums of literature I most often read a piece of entirely. In other words, I don't usually read books the whole way through, despite the fact that I read them far more often than comics - but I rarely put down a comic strip/book without having finished it first.