Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Semiotics 1

1. What is the signifier?

A large sculpture of an angry bull placed in New York City.

What does it signify?

It's a symbol of aggressive financial prosperity in America. It also stands as a reminder that Americans can be as strong as that bull and arise from economical depression.

What specially supports your analysis?

The angry bull is a symbol of strength, force, power and dominance. The way it is positioned and leaned shows that it is ready to attack, ready for action. The tail is whipping, the body is leaned forward, the horns are lowered in a combat mode. Everything about this bull supports the symbol of power, even the bulls testicles are big and well sculpted, representing virility and prosperity.

Even though the bull was designed to represent the economical force that America has, I believe that the statue has taken many different meanings. Tourists from all over the world see the bull as a symbol of power and money, also as a symbol of how americans are a people that are ready to protect their nation just like that bull is. Placing such a strong symbol in an area like New York that is visited my million is every year is a great way to send to the world a message about America and its people. 

Jay-Z and the Bull

According to the lyrics of the famous song, The Empire State of Mind, The streets of New York "will make you feel brand new (and) big lights will inspire you, let's hear it for New York". I have been to New York a couple of times and when I hear this song my imagination runs wild with images of dirty streets, high bronze skyscrapers, and people from everywhere.

However, when you analyze this song further, Jay-Z speaks more truth by saying, "eight million stories out there, and they're naked. Cities is a pity, half of y'all won't make it". 

What does this line in the song really mean?

Like Jay-Z says, New York is a harsh city where many people don't make it. People are trying to survive in such a big city, and financially they either fight or die.

What does all this have to do with the charging bull in New York?

The charging bull is a signifier for a lot of things.

First, look at its stance. It is not in a passive stance, but rather an attacking/charging stance. It is crouched down with a eyes that are wide open and ready to hit the target. The body of the bull is not a thick and fat body, rather it is a skinny bull that is looking to survive. This bull is a symbol of New York's people; they are always in a fighting stance trying to survive.

Second, the location of this bull. The bull is located in Bowling Green Park on a cobble stone paved sidewalk. It is not part of the Garden because it is not thriving. If it was around grass, there would be a different signifier. The location of the Bull signifies that he lives on the street, tries to survive, and is in an attacking mode. Ultimately it all comes back to representing the people of New York.

Third, the color bronze. Bronze is an impure metal. It mixes with everything else and sometimes represents judgement. The bull is bronze because just like a New Yorker it mixes with everyone else and competes.

What does it signify? All of these signifiers point to a very interesting conclusion. Just as Jay-Z expresses in his song, the people of New York are naked, exposed, and will not make it. This bull is charging into the ground below. It is naked, exposed, and physically in front of a lot of people in New York. 

Just like the New Yorkers around it, it too is charging the streets, trying to survive. Notice not only its body position, but the aggressive expression of the bull's face.  This face correlates with those characteristics of the people who want to make money and want to survive.

Lastly, the color bronze signifies strength, and mixture. Religiously, Bronze is an impure metal that often means "fires of testing". The Bronze color means this bull is being tested, and must charge ahead to defeat those tests or challenges it faces. Many places say that the bronze bull represents a Wall street worker. While it could represent Wall Street in some way, I think it greater reflects the people of New York. This bull is charging the harsh streets of New York trying to survive; trying to find a job. 

I think whether you are homeless, wealthy, or just an average New Yorker, this bull represents you in some way!

The nature of it

Signifier: The signifier is the bull statue. It's a bull ready to charge. With its lip curled, legs in racing position and its brows furrowed, the bull looks ready to take down anything in its way.

What it signifies: The bull signifies the the competitive environment it is located in--which is Wall Street. It's a cutthroat market on Wall Street, and the bull signifies that people will take other people down to protect their own.

My evidence: The bull is known for trampling any enemy it is faced with. Like those working on Wall Street, they will take down any obstacle that will prevent them from making their money. Wall Street is known for its ruthlessness and often its underhanded and dirty fighting. The bull is just a fantastic symbol of the nature of those on Wall St.

The Bronze Bull

What is the signifier? 
A bronze bull in the middle of New York City. It is very large and looks rather angry. The way that it is standing is kind of a crouched position as if it is ready to attack at any given moment.

What does it signify?
The bull represents this perseverance, strength, and determination.

Supporting my analysis.
When I look at this bull and look at its anger, its intensity, its intimidating size, and its location, I can't help but think that there is a reason for its outward appearance and its location. It is located in New York City where everything is intensified and very cut-throat competitive anyways. This bull is made of bronze, which is very durable and can survive almost everything. New York is the concrete jungle, and to be able to survive in the city, one has to become a sort of a bronze bull and attack it without getting torn to shreds.

That's a lot of Bull

Signifier- The Wallstreet bull: bronze, as tall as two large men and as wide as a baby whale.  It stands in the middle of a street island surrounded by make-shift gift shops.  The bull itself was created by its artist to appear fierce, powerful.  Its semi-cartoonish design is made to appear as if it’s beginning to charge.

Signified- The bull was originally meant to signify prosperity, fierce determination and strength over adversity.  It symbolized a people powered by money, attempting to capture the American dream of hard work and wealth.  But that’s changed.  The heavy Wallstreet buildings around the bull are all locked up tight with a small army of guards.  People are no longer allowed to enter, only top officials of the stock exchange can go in.  The bull is now simply a tourist moment, a prop in photos  use to prove you've visited Wall Street.

Credibility- I just moved from New York.  My friends worked near Wallstreet and we visited there quite often.  I chatted with the guards who made it very clear I couldn’t enter or tour any of the buildings.  And I watched the tourists take photos of the Bull.  Of course they did so not to remember “impending prosperity” but to simply signify to others they’d been to Wallstreet.  I've got a picture with the bull and me together.  Everyone says, oh you went to Wallstreet.

Semiotics 1?

So I'm pretty sure we are supposed to turn this assignment in as a hard copy in class, but all these people keep posting on here so I'll do both just to be safe. Feel free to delete this if it isn't necessary.

Signifier- This is a rather large chunk of bronze that has been shaped to look like a bull.
What does it signifiy?- I think this is interesting, because I think I've been alive long enough to see this bull take on very different meanings. The original, intended, thing this bull signifies is powerful and aggressive business. After "Occupy Wall Street", however, the bull has come to signify the uncaring and brutal nature of large business to many Americans.
What supports my analysis?- The symbol of a bull is associated with power, ferocity and dominance, primarily because these are traits exhibited by the animal. The sculpture highlights these as well- the eyes and mouth are snarling, the horns are lowered, the tail is whipping and the body is tensed, ready to charge. These all physically signify aggressiveness and even anger. The sheer breadth of the bull and its metal construction lend it a lot of weight to signify its power and dominance.

The difference in my analyses is derived from the context. The bull is very prominently displayed near Wall Street in New York, and has become closely associated with the big money/business of capitalist America. In times of strong financial profit, the bull is then associated with the power and dominance of American business. More recently there has been a growing distrust between the lower and upper classes in America, and the bull is associated instead with the uncaring, ferocious nature of heartless business practice.

Monday, September 23, 2013

What is the signifier?

 It's a bronze bull in the middle of a city. More specifically in New York City. The statue appears quite large and the bull seems to look like an angry Spanish toro than a peaceful Hindu Calf.

What does it signify?

Knowing that this bull is is near Wallstreet and knowing that the term "Bull Market" is when the economy is on the rise. Seeing the aggressive nature of this bull it seems to infer that not only will the economy rise but it will do so aggressively.. Or maybe it means that one has to be aggressive to see their portfolio rise. This would make sense to anyone who has seen the stock floor.

What supports my analysis?

I feel the location and position of the bull most likely support my analysis. If the bull was in any other place on the planet I'd have no way of being able to tell what it was supposed to signify.

Semiotics I

What is the signifier? At it's base level it is just a bronze statue of a bull placed in a very aggressive stance. It looks like it is about to pounce on something, or maybe ram something head on.

What does it signify? In my opinion it signifies power and within its context signifies the American stock exchange, and more generally the economic power of America. Much like America likes to portray a sense of dominance, this bull is completely in charge of any situation and is the most dominant figure in the scene. His appearance is very stalwart, as shown with his determined eyes, he is not going to move or change course even if something difficult comes along. Its body is very lean but powerful, signifying an ability to continue in dominance even in more meager of times.

What supports my analysis? Because I know some details regarding the location of the statue, and its history it helped me to understand better what the bull signified without just having to randomly guess. Because the Stock Exchange, Wall Street, and the American economy in general is a very cutthroat and ambitious place I feel that my thoughts regarding this statue are supported.

Semiotics of the Charging Bull

The Charging Bull

1.  What is the signifier?

There are multiple signifiers within this statue.  The first, most obvious, signifier is the simple observation that it is a bull.  Out of all the subjects that the statue could be, they chose a bull so there must be a reason for that specific choice.  Another clear signifier is the size of the bull.  The position of the bull in a charging stance signifies a lot as well, not only just the body position of the bull but the actual physical location of the statue in New York City is not coincidence either.  The expression on the bull's face also has a significant meaning, as well as the bronze metal that it was made from.

2.  What does it signify?

All of these signifiers can be signifying many different things based on individual interpretation.  Before I started this assignment I looked up the location of the bull and learned that it was located in Bowling Green Park near Wall Street in Manhattan, New York.  This makes a big difference on the interpretation of the statue because after confirming the location I quickly thought of the bull signifying as a business icon representing the fast, aggressive "bull market."  That is a literal interpretation but one that I think was intended.  The size of the bull is also obvious and very clear.  To me, this signifies strength, power, and dominance and I think it's trying to reflect that on Wall Street.  The position of the bull I think is also meant to be a reflection on Wall Street.  The bull is positioned as if it were in motion and charging forward, thus reflecting the active, aggressive nature of business in New York.  Not only the position but the intense, aggressive expression of the bull's face makes you quickly correlate those characteristics to the people who work on Wall Street.  The last signifier I noted in this assignment was the observation that the bull was made of bronze.  Bronze is known to be hard and tough, once again signifying that those characteristics can be attributed to the nature of Wall Street.

3.  What specifically supports my analysis?

After analyzing the semiotics of this statue I looked to see if those signifiers were accurate to the true nature of Wall Street.  Sure enough many of the information that I found talks about the aggressive nature of business in New York and especially the fierce competition and intense atmosphere within Wall Street.  So reading about similar analysis' and confirming my assumptions about Wall Street, I found some support in my semiotic analysis.

A Bull Market

The Wall Street Bull

1.      The signifier is a giant bronze metal bull that is strong, ready to charge, and the lean to one side portrays that it is probably already running and charging. 

2.      What does it signify?  There are several aspects to look at here.  The bronze metal means that it is tough, durable, unbreakable.  There is no color to the sculpture, this is for the intent that the bull has no personality or qualities, but is ruthless, and impersonal.  The action of the bull is leaning to one side, head lowered to the ground, muscles flexed, and his tail is whipped to one side.  The bull is not simply grazing in green pastures, but is ready to fight and take action.  Most importantly, the bull is not limited by being mounted on something or connected to the ground, but is free to charge, attack, and go wherever it pleases.   

3.      What does this mean to us today? Why is it positioned on Wall Street, downtown Manhattan?  The bull represents the stock market, and with the economy down and the stock market unpredictable, the bull reminds us of the strength to fight and protect our economy.  Considering that this bull is on Wall Street – the center of America’s economy – we can make the assumption that it symbolizes a “bull market” which is an association that there will be an increased amount of investments and investors.  

Semiotics 1 Activity

1. What is the signifier? It is a very large bull, it was made to look like that it's moving. It looks angry and it's body twists to give it a sense of motion. The bull is very defined and there are many other details like muscles and it's tail that whips over it's behind.

2. The signified? The bull represents the American stock exchange. Since it is large and intimidating and charging that can mean that working in this field is oftentimes dangerous and unpredictable. It is also very powerful and cannot be stopped or detained.

3. What specifically supports this analysis? The market today represents the aggressiveness and unpredictability of the market. The recession effected the country as a whole and many people become scared and afraid of the abrupt financial instability that the country was found. The market has recovered somewhat and that shows the resilience and true staying power that American market has.

Semiotics- The Bull signifier, signified and analysis

1. The signifier is a large piece of an element of metal  shaped in such a fashion to be equivalent to two times the normal size of a bull.

2. The bull signifies power, dominance, readiness, experience, confidence, determination, aggressiveness in the business, exchange and market world. You see the power by the bulls large size that communicates its ability to dominate. The stance portrays its seriousness to get the job done and a readiness to do so. The sculpted and defined muscles declare its experience that has built it to be such a dominating force and ability to contribute to the rest of the world and also protect itself. Portraying readiness and aggressiveness is also exuding from the bull by its stance that the bull is not standing idle chewing its food but ready to fight and work.

3. The context now with this bull is its continued fierceness and loyalty to overcome any challenge. With the economic downfall and struggles, the bull presses on with its willingness, preparation and character to remind Americans and people everywhere that the American market will fight to be successful. Tourists make a special effort to get a photo taken with this beast because of the symbolism of strength and 'good fortune' that it signifies.
                        -Jennifer Frost

The Cute Little Bull of Wall Street

The signifier is obviously a massive bull. This is a really ripped bull. He looks angry too. He’s leaning to a side as if he’s already in motion, or ready to charge. The bull has some huge horns and is very threatening looking.

What does this massive bull signify? To me, the bull signifies economic strength, power and unpredictability. I think of Wall Street and the risks of capitalism and investments. It also represents optimism and grit amidst hard economic times that so often can hurt the stock market. 

Why do I believe that the bull signifies these things? This bull is located near Wall Street in New York City. The first word that comes to my mind is, well, Wall Street. More specifically, I think of the New York Stock Exchange and the financial sector. I know that a bull market is a market that is on the rise, which provides symbolism of economic strength and power, especially coming from a city like New York. The actual concept and creation of the bull also has symbolic origins. The bull was built after the stock market crash of 1987 by Arturo Di Modica, supposedly as a Christmas gift to the people of New York.

Semiotics of the raging bull

The signifier:
The actual item is a statue of a bull. The bull is very large, and is in a very aggressive stance. The way that the statue is constructed makes the bull appear to be in motion, the position that it is in is definitely not stationary, and it appears to be getting ready to attack something.

The signified:
The significance of the statue is that it represents the American stock exchange. It is an interesting piece because when the markets are doing especially well it is referred to as a “bull market”. This piece therefore represents American prosperity and the strength of the market. Because the bull is in motion, it also gives the idea of fluidity in the markets and the fact that they are very dynamic in the way that they move. It requires strength and courage to work with the markets.

Currently this statue has taken on new meaning with the market crash and almost serves as a representation of the corruption that occurred and the consequences that it had for people. It is a sign of the strength of those who manipulate the markets, even if that manipulation is at the expense of the common people.

Semiotics #1

1.  The signifier is the large chunk of metal that has been sculpted and shaped to look like a bull.
2.  What it signifies, however, is much more than that.  Ultimately, this image represents the determination of businesses to succeed and to grow.
3.  The muscles on the bull are large and strong, signifying strength and power.  The expression on the bulls face signifies determination and rage.  The stance of the bull is crouched, with his tail up and his head down.  This signifies that the bull is ready to fight and confident in its ability to win.  In the stock market, loss is represented by the bear and growth is represented by the bull.  All of these factors help us understand that the sculpture here represents the determination of businesses to succeed.

Semiotics Bull

The Signifier: The actual image is the bull. It is charging with aggression. It looks angry and like it is focused on one particular thing. It has horns coming out of the top of its head and you can see its rib cage and also many of its muscles. The tail is up in the air like it is ready to whip somebody. The bull looks like it is about to charge.

The Signified: The bull signifies progression of business in the United States of America. It represents the fact that the US is lunging towards success and is as determined and stubborn as a bull.

Semiotic Analysis

Wallstreet Bull

The Signifier:
The actual image is a bull.  It seems to be ready to charge forward with aggression.  It is focused on its purpose and looks like it has a specific target.  The ribs are protruding with all muscles tensed, with narrowed eyes and a whipping tail.  The bull is hunched with weight on his two front legs.  It’s all alone without any other objects impeding its goal.  Teeth are bared.

The Signified:
Because this bull is located on Wallstreet in New York City (The Wallstreet Bull), it is a symbol of the progression of business throughout the United States.  This bull is meant to symbolize the prosperity of the country and represents fast growth in the stock market.  Because of its stance, it represents the stock market lunging forward with a specific goal in mind as it makes its way forward with ambition.  Because the bull is all alone and so huge, this can represent American business and economy, supposedly big, fierce and in charge.

In the recent past, U.S. economy has experienced upheaval and uncertainty.  There was the .com bubble burst, then there was the housing market crash, the banking crisis along with high unemployment in the United States.  Over and over again, our country experiences financial difficulty but works to overcome the setbacks. Over the last five years, the U.S. has been working to come out of that economic dip and re-bolster the economy.  The bull can be a symbol of commitment and perseverance, with a constant drive and commitment to continue pushing forward, no matter what the circumstances may be. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Semiotics of the Bull

Signifier:  I've seen photos of this statue multiple times and it has always been a statue of a bull to me.  That's what I see(saw) when I look at it.

After doing some reading from various accounts, I'm came to find out that the name of the statue is "The Charging Bull."  Although at times it has been called "The Bowling Green Bull" and the "Wall Street Bull."  Interesting titles for the statue, so I dug a little deeper.  The Bull was designed to look like it was energetic and in motion, its face portraying an angry visage.  All this to capture the aggression that surrounds the ups and downs of financial optimism and how precarious prosperity is in the stock market.  The Bull embodies the idea that the stock market is always in motion and that it is an angry and unforgiving place.  This is a place for the quick thinking and sure footed.

In support of my analysis, I have feedback from a couple of sources.  The main being one of my relatives.  He used to be very involved in the stock market and at get-togethers we would always hear his latest endeavor.  I remember him telling me how dangerous a place it was.  He would always tell me how you needed to be two steps ahead, and to always stay focused on its changes.  The second you looked away it would knock you down.  He was talking about the stock market, but he could have very well been talking about a bull as well.  From what I've heard officially, and also second-hand, the stock market feels like a living entity.  A very angry, constantly-in-motion entity.  Not unlike a raging bull.

Semiotics Assignment

1) What is the signifier?
This is a picture of a bull statue.

2) What does it signify?
After doing some research, I found that this statue sits in New York City and is sometimes referred to as the "Wall Street Bull". It was erected by an artist as a symbol of financial power and prosperity in 1989 after the stock market crashed in 1987. The bull's aggressive pose shows that Wall Street isn't passive, and that the stock market is an unpredictable, dangerous, and powerful force. Its eyes are wide and its lips are curled in a threatening sneer. The bull is also standing in a very aggressive stance, with its head near to the floor and its shoulders low. Its tail is swishing in an alert and tense way. All of these details are meant to symbolize aggression and power within America's financial sector. Also, It is also interesting to note that the artist, Arturo Di Modica, rebelliously placed the statue in New York City without letting the city know. Now, it is famous landmark that many tourists visit each year.

3) What specifically supports your analysis?

Knowing the story behind the statue definitely helps, but even if I didn't know these details, I would still infer that the bull is a symbol of power and strength. However, I probably wouldn't have realized that it represents Wall Street and the stock market. This is why context is so important; it helps us properly analyze the things we see each day and understand their deeper meaning.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Creativity in the kitchen

I couldn't post my first creativity assignment  because I didn't have access to the blog. So here it is my first post.

The other night I was really hungry and the only thing I had was pasta and chicken. I didn't have any type of sauce. So I decide to create my own sauce.  The first thing I did was to see what I had available. That made me realize that creativity it is not about having all the resource but using the resources we already have wisely.
So I took some milk, celery, onions,  garlic, salt, parmesan cheese and parsley and put on the blender after everything was mix I tried. It tasted good but it was too runny. So I thought what can I put to make it more creamy. Usually I used flour but I didn't have any. The only thing I had is an avocado. Without really knowing what  I was doing I put the avocado with the rest of the ingredients. The final result was a creamy parmesan cheese avocado sauce. I was delicious and I was really happy with the final product.

Monday, September 16, 2013


I was walking down the street and I saw a little leaf that fell from a tree and landed gracefully on this metal thing. As I stared at it, I thought it looked like a butterfly flying across a pale grey sky.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

what is art? what is accidental? (accidental art)

*I did not have access to the blog until today! (after class) This is assignment #2*
For this assignment I decided to find accidental art. In the assignment keynote it says "...Identify and document existing "art" that you find, such as things that are not created on purpose. Some examples include stains on the sidewalk, spilled paint, bird poo, residue..." Because of my weird situation with the blog I had already some peoples posts before I got access, so when I went on my walk to find accidental art I already had an idea of what everyone else had found. There were staples on a telephone pole, ants in a sidewalk crack, leaves on the sidewalk, etc. This really made me wonder what we classify as 'art' and why. One person's idea was a mound of dirt. I think these are all valid because all that really matters is the person who's looking at it. I mean, that's why boys hate going to art galleries with girls right? We all see things in different ways and it's sometimes hard for us to appreciate other people's points of view. With all these images in mind, I decided I wanted to be different. I didn't want to find some pile of leaves (which is totally what I would have done if I hadn't seen the blog posts first). I found this "accidental art" on the stairs just off of 800 North.
Obviously, this was painted very intentionally. There's no way some bright red stuff magically arranged itself into 'You've Changed'. What I think was accidental is the fact that I saw it as art. Art to me is what makes me think. Sometimes squiggly lines speak do it, sometimes they don't and I'm pretty sure a preschooler could've created the 'art' I'm looking at. I thought the timing of this message was so perfect. The first week back at school at the base of the stairs on a rainy day- you can't help but reflect on the last time you were there and how you've changed since. This was art to me.

the alphabet, food, and keyboards. what more does a college student need?

*I did not have an invitation to the blog until today! This is assignment #1*
Like my peers, I was completely overwhelmed by this assignment because there was so many possibilities. Following the advice of the TED talk we watched in class, I decided to give myself some restrictions to 'boost' my creativity. I decided to do something on paper, probably because when I think of creativity I think of art, which in my mind is something on a wall in a gallery. Obviously doing something on a piece of paper doesn't narrow it down too much, so I decided that I wouldn't use any typical writing/painting utensil. I also limited myself to things I had available in my apartment, which was cleaning products and food. Next I had to decide what I wanted to put on the paper. I'm a terrible artist but I really like typography, so I stuck with that. I decided to write out the alphabet. I felt like I was really on a roll with the 'college student' theme; things you could find in an apartment, the alphabet (something we use everyday), but I wanted it to be a little more 'creative', so I decided I couldn't just spew out the alphabet from a-z. I ended up following a qwerty keyboard, which is the order the letters follow on a typical american laptop or desktop, starting with q and ending with m. This is what I ended up with:
It's not very pretty, and to be honest by the end I didn't feel very creative, but it did draw some interesting parallels for me. For instance, some of the sweet and colorful food I thought would show up more on the paper hardly came through at all. Some of the more bitter or gross foods, on the other hand, showed up really well. It sounds cliche, but it was kind of like life. Sometimes we do these really easy 'sweet' things with great expectations, but after the big picture is completed we can hardly see them. When we do 'bitter' things, however, they are like big bright yellow spots, even though they are kind of smelly, and we weren't really sure what we were getting ourselves into when first started putting it on our 'canvas.'

Carpet Art

Accidental Art:

So I was not able to take a photo and upload it. But I was sitting in my room yesterday and I was looking down at my carpet and I could see that there was something that looked like a figure in the carpet. So I drew it and it came out looking like a bear with a police hat on!

10 questions

For this post, I combined three activities. I sat in one place, found accidental art, and asked thought questions to examine it. I had to change my perspective a few times, especially once I got to my 5th or 6th question. I stopped looking at just my surroundings and started looking at myself and others on a more personal level.

The link: 10 questions

A Scale Model

As I made my search of accidental art today, I was an a hunt for the ephemeral. What would be existing today that probably wouldn't be there tomorrow? What would only I be able to see if I stopped and looked hard enough? This week's downpours gave me an opportunity for comparison. As I walked by the construction debris near the Wilkinson Center, I saw an interesting framing of the small scale and the macro scale - a pile of dirt aligned almost exactly as Timpanogos was many miles away. Immediately I could see comparisons that went beyond the immediate likeness. As had happened to Timpanogos last weekend, the mound of dirt, too, was a victim of weather and erosion. Before both stood a flat expanse of concrete that seemed insignificant in comparison and fell. Both of those plains bore the effects of the downpour, wearing parts of their respective mountains upon them, washed down by the rains.

If there were no watches, or clocks, or cellphones, or…

Time Observation-
           I spent most of the day sitting in The Wall restaurant in the Wilk. During this time I witnessed about 4 waves of increased customers. When I realized the waves of people were caused by classes letting-out I realized that each wave was evenly spaced by an hour.
          Once I realized that each wave was an hour apart, I was able to predict the waves by how many songs had been played over the radio. This leads to the second way I found to observe the passing of time. I figured each song was about an average of three and a half minutes long. When I realized I would want to eat something before class started I mad sure to order my food after the 11th or 12th song just to be sure I wasn’t going to have a long wait for my food.
           Traffic. During the summer months I sell home security. I spent all day, everyday either in the same neighborhood or driving all day in the car around town. I rarely had a need to look at the time during work but I would always know when 12:30 and 5:30 came around because of the immediate increase in vehicles on the road during lunch/rush hour. Traffic is very consistent and a dependable way of knowing what time it is.

the ground

The idea of accidental art really got me thinking. How is it that when I have such a routine, I miss the most obvious things that I come in contact with every single day? I was really focussing on this while I was walking around the last couple of days. I realized that the while I do look around and up, I hardly ever look down while I am walking. I have always just assumed that natural beauty does't come from something so mundane, practical, and even dirty as the ground. So, in an attempt to change my point of view, I decided to start really paying attention to what was beneath me. In the short period of time that I experimented with this I found that some of the most interesting and complex forms of art are ones that I come in direct and physical contact with almost constantly and yet hardly ever take note of.
The textures and unevenness of blacktop is something I had never really thought about, let alone viewed as beauty. The complexity of it really is amazing. 
The fact that this ground was wearing at different times and levels (the darker areas) added a really cool element that I may not have otherwise noticed if I hadn't been taking the time to pay attention to the ground.

Art. I think...

I don't think you could classify what I found during my walk as "art" per se, but I did try to look at things in a new way:

Some idiot planted this tree upside down. The green part goes in the air, not the dirt.

That guy made of leaves lost his ear.

A leaf that peed itself.

Twigs paddleboard, too.

Nice tribal tats, Library.

Craig Bishop

Accidental Art: The Beauty Beside the Trash Can

For my creativity assignment, I looked for accidental art on BYU campus.  As I was walking around, looking for accidental art, I started to notice things like the interesting pattern of dirt scattered on the sidewalk and the beauty and symbolism of weeds growing up through the cracks in the sidewalk.  Something especially interesting that I saw was the pattern of these U-shaped stains in the sidewalk near a trash can by the SWKT.  These rust-colored, randomly positioned shapes formed a fascinating pattern in the concrete.  Together with the overlapping twigs and leaves, I believe this forms something very beautiful.
I walk past this garbage can almost every day, and I've never noticed these stains before.  In all of the time I've spent walking around campus, I've never paused to try to see the meaning in things like dirt, weeds, and leaves.  This assignment made me realize that beauty can be found in even the most seemingly insignificant things, if I only take the time and creativity to look for it.

Accidental Art with Shadows

When I finally found the time to start the creativity assignment the sun had already set and I started to worry that I would have to go find "art" in between classes the next day. But then I realized that nighttime offers a whole other spectrum of art and I decided that a walk at night could be the answer to creativity. On my stroll I realized the beauty of shadows and how they reflect reality in a disfigured manner. I was able to capture shots of a street sign that looks like a shadowy pinwheel, a 50 foot black tree that juts out of a stump, a detailed reflection of a bike tire, and a dark hand rail that dissolves into the abyss. I was shocked by how much the contrast of light and dark could create at night.

A Desk's Life: 30 Minutes in 6 Seconds

I hit a wall while studying in the library and decided to take a break. Remembering I had a creativity assignment to complete, I figured it was as good a time as any to do it. I gave myself 30 minutes and started brainstorming ways to document the passage of time. This was my favorite one.

I looked over and saw a sad soul staring out the window. I'd observed him restlessly squirming around for about an hour, unable to really focus on  what appeared to be a reading assignment. Using him as my inspiration, I thought it would be amusing to look up at him every 30 seconds for a half hour and draw exactly what I saw every time. Here's what I got.

About 15 minutes into it, he appeared to get a text and then got up and left. With half my time remaining, and my subject gone, I decided to change my focus from the person to the desk. After a few minutes of drawing the empty desk and an empty chair, a girl walked up and sat at the desk.

She wasn't a dynamic of a muse as the desk's former occupant, but trying to guess whether this obsessive texter would have her phone in her hand or on the desk every 30 seconds became an all too amusing game for me. 

In the end, I created a digital flip-book of my 30 minute break, complete with a fragmented audio documentation of the conversations around me while completing it, as seen and heard in the vine below.

Accidental Art: New Perspective, New Stories

    We all know nature is beautiful and man has made some beautiful things. I feel like we pass amazing things everyday and sometimes see them and sometimes we don't. As I know today I was intentionally searching for this accidental art I wanted things that made me think about the how and why.

This is simply the walkway outside the library and the Wilk. This is the first thing that really was accidental but identified as an object for me. I see the five worn (or unworn depending on outlook) spots from old planters and clearly see the five dot side of a die. It was tough from the angle to capture it let alone focus on it and give it it's own frame. Regardless I think it is a cool sight and has a clear form and a story behind how it happened.

One mans trash is another mans art. I like this because it is so unintentional but says so much. This in many ways demonstrates a day in the life of a BYU student. There is so much to infer about each object how and why it is there. It is also only part of the photo. It contrasts with a unique angle away from our daily perspective. It is something that looks good though you never think of beauty or art on a trash can. Sometimes we just look from a different perspective and find something more.

Mitchell Marshall

Thought Experiment

What if there’s a specific way to turn a door handle that ends up taking us to a secret portal? What if we all just don’t know the specific pattern?

If there was a specific pattern to twisting a door handle, one day a person is most likely to be fooling around with turning a door handle and ends up NOT where he expected to be.  Suddenly this man spends years of his life trying to recreate exactly what he did to end up in this different realm. In his last crazed attempt he finally recreates it and escapes back into our world. He then has got the pattern down and can go into all different realms. Behind each door he does the pattern on there is a completely different realm. But wait. This man later gets married and his wife catches on to “this pattern.” But then they get a divorce and the wife shares this pattern with a gazillion other people so soon enough EVERYONE is just doing the pattern on any door handle and going back and forth between this world and other realms.  Absolute mayhem.

Next time think about how you twist a door handle...

Accidental Art: Confused Cords

     As I walked from the campus of Brigham Young University to my apartment I prowled for any existing or natural "art" that I might find. Maybe because of the time of day, or due to my lack of sleep the night before, or the fact that I have strolled the same path too many times before, nothing caught my eye. Discouraged, I lugged myself up the stairs to my apartment, through the door, and into my room. I sat down at my desk with the intent of reviewing learning suite for what other possible options I could fulfill in order to complete this assignment. After I had set up my laptop and connected all of the stationary accessories that enhance the computer's functionality, I turned on all of the devices and waited for learning suite to load. When I glanced down at my keyboard to type, the light from my desk lamp reflected the scene pictured above into my peripheral vision.
The chaos was what first intrigued my eyes; then it dawned on me that in the seemingly nonsensical jumble of wires, each cord had only two ends that were all connected to either a device or an input. The circular tendencies of the cords create an impression of infinite confusion, even though the cords themselves are not unreasonably long. I had never really paid attention to anything other than the inputs, plug-ins and devices themselves, but on this night the beauty was created by the in-between.

A Reflection I can't share

I've always been fascinated with light. There is so much to learn about life through observation of light. What General Conference has not included at least one talk drawing some analogy concerning light and some aspect of the gospel? I took a little trip into my own conscience to understand a little more about light as I stumbled upon some accidental light.
As I came out of the HFAC I came upon a reflection in a puddle of water that showed a tree in the distance. As I snapped a photo on my phone I noticed that the reflection was not showing up. I noticed that this image was only possible in that moment. That the light (the Spirit) and the puddle of water (Baptism) provided a once in a lifetime image that cannot be recreated.

          So are many things in life. I cannot recapture many moments. Sometimes it is even impossible to record it (as evident by my camera failing to capture all of this). I could only truly experience the moment by actively living in the moment. 

-C. Pace

What if...

I have always liked the idea of asking "what if" questions because they always bring about really interesting answers. So for this assignment I just started writing down a bunch of questions, just stream of consciousness. It definitely sparked more creativity than I thought it would and actually caused me to do a little daydreaming right in the middle of the day. In a way it acted as not only a creative activity but also a break from any other normal day. Here are some of the questions I asked myself:

- What if college was just a test before the real one?
       Then we would all be in school for a really long time, but also we would probably be really smart by the time we reached "real" college. We might also die a lot younger as a result of added stress, which could make for some population problems. 
-What if sleeping was actually reality instead of our awake time?
    Then the world would be a lot more interesting, because so much more can happen in dreams, essentially anything is possible. 
-What if homework was fun?
  Then there would be no procrastinators and we would all get pretty good grades. However than the problem arises of there being no slackers to balance the super studious students. But is that really a problem? 
-What if pictures really did take away a piece of our soul?
 Then everyone with a Facebook would be soulless, so I guess than we would pretty much all be zombies or serial killers...though I'm not sure which is worse.
-What if our siblings were actually our parents?
 Then who are our parents really? I guess it would make sense why my older sister was always bossing me around then.

Below is the image of my thoughts as I wrote them. They are arranged in different shapes, some just made up, in hopes to show that ideas don't always connect but they are still worth writing down as they can spark unexpected creativity.

Dry Spots after the Storm

I've always been fascinated by water and how it is such a force to change things. Water is everywhere and everything depends on it. When it rains I almost always run out in it to just feel water pouring down me. After work one day it had just stopped raining and the car next to me had just driven off, leaving these beautiful dry spots in the soaked pavement. I thought they looked kinda cool and decided to take a picture of it for this creative assignment. Nature always has a way of making things look amazing

Accidental Art: Potato Chips

For some reason, my creativity seems to revolve around food. Although I was keeping my eye out for accidental art whenever I was walking outside, I found my accidental art in an unexpected place: a bag of potato chips! This was a good reminder for me that creativity and art do not have to be manifested in the stereotyped forms like painting, drawing, sculpting, or even making music. Art is so much about our individual perception. An object meant to be consumed for energy and nutrition (or maybe not so nutritious in this case... ;)) can be a work of art that also serves as a reminder for us to love one another.

Accidental Art

I realize that this is a picture of a trash can... BUT there are a few aspects of this picture that I loved, and honestly I would have never noticed were it not for our project.  First and foremost, I want to draw your attention to the designs in the mud that were created by the rain.  Second of all, I loved all of the different shades of brown here.  You have the dark brown mud, the light brown trash can, the rusty light post, and also the light brown reflections in the water.  I also appreciated the angles in this picture.  I like the angles of the mud, and the triangular shaped reflections of the water.  I am always in a hurry and am quickly trying to get from one part of my busy day, to the next.  But during this walk, I realized several beautiful things that I know I would have missed out on if I would have been in my typical hurry.  Hurray for accidental art projects!

Wandering Around Salt Lake City in the Middle of the Night

I had been wanting to explore Salt Lake city a little bit more in depth since I moved here years ago, and last night I did.

                                                                                                                      I left my phone at home so I couldn't keep track of the time or be yoinked back into the "real" world. I brought a male friend with me as a safety precaution and he had his phone, but just to take pictures. Neither of us really knew anything about Salt Lake, so we took the downtown exit, drove into the taller buildings and parked in front of a gorgeous piece of street art, got out and looked at it for a while then turned and just started walking.  

Soon after we started I made it a rule that we could not retrace our steps at any point, so we ended up wandering around a few city blocks and saw tons of cool shops and a beautiful urban-style park. After getting up on an open balcony I noticed this run down, old-school restaurant in the middle of several large, industrious buildings and we paused there to look at if for a while. 

                                                                                             Walking passed a building under construction we looked in the windows and saw these scriptures sitting open and waiting and thought, "only in Utah". It was amusing and intriguing.

                                                                                                   I loved the lighting and painting in this alley way that we almost passed because it was tucked away between two huge buildings. I'm glad we noticed it though because it had such an awesome atmosphere and was a great natural setting for a photo shoot or music video, both of which I love to make so I will probably be revisiting this place. If I can remember where it was...

There is something magical about being out in a big city at night, I have always loved it. It makes me feel like the world is brimming with possibilities and like all I have to do is reach out and grab them. To wander around Salt Lake in the middle of the night without any ties or obligations, it was truly liberating.