Thursday, 9 February 2017

Foundation 14 - all your data is art (how to break nearly everything)

In 2013 I was part of the first Foundation series of art exhibitions in Tullamore Co.Offaly http://www.offalyindependent.ie/whatson/roundup/articles/2013/09/27/4017709-foundation-13-officially-launched/  curated by Brendan Fox http://www.brendanfoxart.com/ . During foundation 13 I gave a talk and workshop about circuitbending and glitch art which was well received, and showed one of my first databent videos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7Q2VVE8qpY which sat in the basement of an old shop and growled and grumbled threateningly . Next year they asked me back to do a further talk which I called ' All your data is art ' , except that year nobody turned up ! This blog post is more about what I would have talked about then and gives the background to how I started to work more in digital than paint .


Databending and circuitbending – web links

Databending - BEFORE DOING ANYTHING TO A FILE ALWAYS MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A BACK UP COPY DATABENDING IS SOMETIMES NON RECOVERABLE ( THOUGH THE FILE MAY PLAY OR BE READABLE IT WILL NOT BE THE SAME , EVER) YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED BACK UP BACK UP BACK UP..

Start here – probably the clearest and simplest explanation as to method. Databending primer -http://blog.animalswithinanimals.com/2008/08/databending-and-glitch-art-primer-part.html

Philip stearns – puts the glitch to work , very important in popularising the ideas of glitch aesthetic

Rosa menkman – her vernacular of file formats is essential reading , but her website sunshine in my throat is more fun http://rosa-menkman.blogspot.ie/


essential reading for messing with jpegs http://www.ffd8.org/header_remix/ gives good overview of file format construction.

For all your header file needs and understandings http://afruj.wordpress.com/2008/08/01/image-file-header-formats/

find out what colours are in your files ! http://www.javascripter.net/faq/rgbtohex.htm

Definitions definitions definitions http://www.jameshconnolly.com/glitchtalk.html


the inestimable Antonio Roberts aka hellocatfood http://www.hellocatfood.com/

Datamoshing ( its all about the i frames )

see some glitch art !
http://gli.tc/h/gallery.html ( because it hurts my eyes)

https://www.fastcompany.com/3034296/inside-the-bizarre-phenomenon-known-as-glitch-art

more Rosa Menkman ( her online work) http://vimeo.com/r00s

on facebook many many groups but this one is open and accesible


Circuit-bending (break some stuff)

Circuit bending is more , shall we say ........ risky than databending . I advise caution and never to work on anything connected to mains power . Start with battery powered devices , like childrens toys , if working on cameras be aware that the flash capacitor if there is one ( large black round long thing near flash itself) holds a very high charge and can give you a nasty shock .so start at the first link and read carefully .


that's the site of Rheed Ghazala read more about him on wikipedia – he is a seminal figure in circuit bending ( especially for musical instruments and how to make things do things they really really shouldnt) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reed_Ghazala

karl klomp for dirty video mixers and making things look wrong



mess with your monitor – I advise extreme caution here , if your playing with crt displays and you dont know what your doing you may end up dead , the voltages are that high , maybe chance the vga flatscreen hack ( its a cable splice project ) – but proceed carefully. So having said that heres the link , read everything carefully , download the pdf etc before doing it if your going to do it)


open source software.

I use linux , Debian to be precise , it works and keeps working  .You don't have too , but some databending stuff just works better . This one command line script

xxd -p somefile.mpeg | sed 's/a0/b0/g' | xxd -r -p > somefileglitched.mpeg ( where a0 and b0 are hex values which can be changed from 00 to ff or from 0000 to ffff or 000000 ffffff and all hex values in between) depending on target and file format

is the basis of most of my work , that and transcoding using ffmpeg, ( you can do it in windows but its so much easier from the linux command line) , though glitch is os agnostic flexibility is better.

Having said that here is a list of software to find which is all open source ( to see what i mean by that go here http://www.fsf.org/ it explains why you cant do certain things on your windows or mac laptop and what the alternatives and issues are) some Ive included on this disc , some you will find yourself.

Avidemux ( good for iframe removal for that squishy datamosh feeling – also for converting your mpegs to mp4s and general format tomfoolery)
The gimp – photoshop replacement – open-source and free
vlc – the only media player to use ( good snapshot function for capturing that lovely glitch – plays corrupted files quite well also)
virtualdub – primitive non-linear editor
Audacity – sound ( and video editing he he he he)
yawcam – webcam monitor
picasa ( fault in file reading in wndows makes corrupted mpegs even more corrupt nice) though as of 2017 discontinued boo.
ffmpeg – commandline but can convert anything to anything really quickly.
Frhed – hex editor
notepad++ editor of choice for many .

The fun is finding new ways to do things , and that should be your guide , its all 0s and 1s a computer is agnostic , be prepared to break stuff , but remember always backup!

all of the above over a period of years led me to this  which is what I am doing now ( moe to follow in the next post )

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