The Mechanics of Immersion

a Digital/Media studio @ RMIT University

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Project Briefs

Audiovisual submissions to be submitted via Clyp (audio) and Vimeo (video). If you do not have an account for these services, or would prefer to create one specifically for the course, do so in Week 1. Audiovisual submissions are to be embedded with your written work in your Media Factory blog. If you do not have a Media Factory blog, contact Dan and he’ll hook you up.

At the bottom of each blog post submitted for Project Briefs (not your weekly ones/random ones), copy and paste the below. If it ain’t pasted, it won’t be marked.

I declare that in submitting all work for this assessment I have read, understood and agree to the content and expectations of the assessment declaration.

The link above is to the fine print (tl;dr plagiarism is really bad and doing it can have dire consequences for your degree; just don’t). Remember that Media Factory blogs are public, so consider copyright and fair use at all times when posting.


Project Brief 4: Audiovisual Project (40%)

Initial thoughts/suggestions (Week 6B)

Developed Brief (Week 9)

By now you should have developed a clear plan for what you will be making for your final project. This should be a single work or series of works that draws on the concepts, theories, models raised in the studio to date; similarly, this work/s should be large enough to develop and complete to a polished standard in the remaining five weeks of the studio.

If your work is audiovisual, upload this as an MP3/MP4; if not digital, ensure you can somehow record/capture it, and upload photos/video as required.

In addition to the creative/analytic work, each student must upload a 2000-word exegesis that explains how the work you’ve done contributes to the scholarship of immersion. An exegesis is not strictly speaking a reflective statement, but is rather a sustained argument drawing on extra research as well as your experience of completing your project (you can use any remaining blog posts to document progress, thoughts, standard reflective writing).

The exegesis can be a response to the finished work, but we highly recommend you start researching and planning this written work now. Edith Cowan University offers:

As the research develops, the exegesis records, documents and interprets what occurs. In addition, as you explore theories and previous research, these insights inform the research project which feeds back into the creative project.[1]

Your exegesis must be in Word format (doc/docx), 12pt Times New Roman, double-spaced, with page numbers bottom right; you must also include your name, student number, studio name, course code and name, and a title at the top of the document.

As well as the creative/analytic work and your exegesis, you must post however many blogs are left to make up a minimum of ten (10) for the semester. Try not to leave these until the last minute, but rather use them as a way of thinking through the project or the written work, testing out ideas, sharing work in progress, etc.

Due Date:       All materials and written work to be uploaded to your Google submission folder (this will be shared with you soon) by 11:59pm Sunday 22 October (end of Week 13).

[1] Edith Cowan University, “Research Methodologies for the Creative Arts & Humanities: Exegesis,” last modified 18 September 2017, http://ecu.au.libguides.com/c.php?g=410634&p=2797941

[ Marking Sheet (PDF) ]


Blog / Reflective Journal
[ marked as part of other Project Briefs; a percentage of Project Brief 4 will be allocated to this constant reflective process ]

Throughout semester you should be constantly blogging; reflective posts, work in progress updates, reports on any gallery visits or immersive media experiences, thoughts and commentary on what’s been covered in class, reactions to reading, etc.

Minimum 10 blog posts of 2-300 words each; these should reference readings, but particularly should look outward to reference extra research. Feel free to make use of imagery/moving imagery/sound, but always consider fair use when embedding material that isn’t your own.


Project Brief 1: Statement of Intent (300 words)

What do you want to get out of this studio? What technical skills would you like to improve? What is it about immersion that grabs you? Have you watched any films, listened to any albums, been to an art exhibit, watched any TV series, that really pulled you in? How do you think this was achieved?

This post should an informal response to the above questions, but it should set out at least two clear goals for you to work towards this semester. These goals should be concrete and things that you can develop and reflect on across semester (e.g. I want to create a quality audio piece for my portfolio; I want to develop three sketches that observe how editing can create immersion; I want to get better at collaboration.)

Post this to your Media Factory blog by 11:59pm Sunday 30 July.

[ This Project Brief is not graded, but feedback will be provided. ]


Project Brief 2: Audiovisual Response (30%)

Choose one piece of audio or vision from the audiovisual commons (Week 1 exercise). If you chose video, you must create a soundscape of the same length that functions in response to or works with that piece of vision. If you chose audio, you must create a piece of vision of the same length that fits with or responds to the soundscape. You cannot make any edits to the source material. You must also upload a 300-word reflection to your Media Factory blog: what choices did you make and why? What are you responding to? How do sound and vision blend (or not) in your piece? How does the finished work immerse the viewer?

  • Consider and outline the mechanics of HOW you have attempted to achieve your goal
  • Detail what drew you to the media you have selected
  • Outline the audiovisual relationships you are crafting; identify how your addition relates to the starting footage
  • Give context to your approach through discussion and some extra research

Upload your video to Vimeo, and embed the video in your Media Factory blog post. Four separate weekly blog posts also due. 11:59pm Sunday 13th August.


Project Brief 3: Immersion Audit (30%)

[ MARKING SHEET (PDF, RMIT login required) ]

Interest groups will be tasked with auditing an immersive space. This space could be a lift, a shopping centre, an art gallery, an installation, or something else entirely. As a group, you must list all the stimuli that are operating within the space (you could do this individually, then collate to create an uber-list). This should involve more than one visit to the space. Then, research and develop an individual 1500-word written statement about how these stimuli elicit a particular response. Your statement must contain a thesis (proposition or arguable statement) about what immersion is and why it works in your space. The thesis could be derived from sound or film theory, or it might consider neuroscientific or psychological angles. You should be addressing most, if not all, of the questions below.

1. Deduce and outline your sense of the design objectives – from large scale to small scale.
Who is the market / target audience for this space or experience?

  • How are they being engaged?
  • What assumptions are being made about them?

2. How successfully have these perceived objectives been achieved?

  • What are the elements responsible for the success or failure?
  • What improvements could have been made? How?

3. Is the experience of immersion designed to be on- or off-radar?

  • What senses are being invoked – whether specifically or by inference?
  • In what ways are these relationships being managed?
  • How much space is being offered for subjective variability? How is this done? What are the results?

Based on your list, and your overall experience with or engagement with the space, engage the above questions in your 1500-word written response with clear integration and interpretation of research BEYOND the set readings and the studio bibliography. There must be a minimum of five (5) academic sources in your Works Cited list/bibliography.

Copy and paste your written statement into a Media Factory blog post. Your list/table should be included beneath this as an appendix. Two additional separate blog posts also due; these could include photos of you gathering your list/researching your space, and ruminations on individual stimuli within that space. Due 11:59pm Sunday 3 September.

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