The combination of digital video, animation, and hypertext/hyperlinks is interesting and allows a lot of room for creativity. However, I found Ceci N’est Pas Embres very confusing at first. To me, there was no meaning for the placement of the hyperlinks, the videos didn’t connect well or have much relation with one another, the intro animation didn’t make much sense either. Without reading more about it before watching more videos, I wouldn’t have been able to appreciate the project.
Ceci N’est Pas Embres is nonlinear, interactive, and database-driven. It was conceived for and built using, the Korsakow System. Ceci N’est Pas Embres is a ‘database diary,’ a highly personal travel document based on the experiences of a family from Montréal living in rural France for six months in 2010.
The creator of the hyperlinked project, Matt Soar, effectively captures the experience of traveling and experiencing a culture shock in a rural area in a country very different from his metropolitan home. Matt provides a series of highly idiosyncratic observations about his experiences during his travel including things like the places, culture, language, and family.
When we travel to somewhere we’ve never been, we have personal experiences everywhere we go. Most travel documentation, including regular travel videos, are usually linear. It has a beginning typically involving getting to the destination, a middle where it showcases the tourist attractions at the destination, and a conclusion, usually at night, highlighting something special like fireworks or a sunset over a city’s skyline. Matt Soar instead created something more personal and captured the very essence people feel when traveling. The sudden thoughts and ideas are documented as well as other things which are all in a database and spread around organically in the project.
Interactive cinema opens a new dimension to storytelling. It allows viewers to interact with the video and maybe even change the story as they choose in what order what to watch. Or perhaps you could set it up as chapters where the audience views one video at a time like episodes so it feels like a digital video book. The possibilities are endless.
I can’t say it was very entertaining going through Matt’s project, but it sure feels like art. It gives me some ideas for my final project.