The Swamp Chronicles

For my first performance, I downloaded about 150 clips from my Snapchat archive. They document my college experience and transition into adulthood. With each bang, a new clip appears. In text editor, I provide context for the clip and utilize the text to speech function as I move on the next one. I am interested in analyzing the formation of a digital identity and the ways in which memories may exist eternally in the digital age. By reviewing these clips, I am very surprised by how I presented myself to others. I definitely had a need to fit in.

In my patch, I connected the x and y dimensions of my video clips to my audio. Each time the audio is above 0.3, the pixelated video begins to glitch either horizontally or vertically. I added several other effects, such as the ability to change brightness, contrast, saturation, threshold, luminance, fade, zoom, theta, and speed rate of the video. For a long period of time, I questioned how many effects I should change. For example, I thought about changing the threshold and fade slightly as the performance progresses. When I changed the theta, the video screen would turn completely black when glitching. The saturation and contrast provided a very hallucinatory color scheme. While I enjoy these effects, I decided to only change the threshold to 0.03 and fade to 0.2 before my performance begins. Three minutes is not a long time. The change in threshold provides excellent transitions in my video clips as they fade into each other.

The reason I decided not to change my video graphics too greatly is because I found performing live to be challenging. I am very happy I practiced in the class beforehand. First, I noticed that I must move my cursor from my computer to the screen monitor in order to change the text. During the performance, I will be staring at the screen, attempting to write witty remarks without typos. In my patch, I moved all of my information to the right side so that I may move my cursor between the two screens easily.

Moreover, I noticed while practicing in the classroom that some of my video clips appear distorted on the big screen. I intend for my clips to be easily recognizable. Before I commentate on each video, I will attempt to adjust the gain to the perfect point in which the video glitches slightly. My right gain is fixed, while the left will be toggled. I like controlling the audio because the limit guarantees that my text to speech feature on my mac is not overpowered by the videos.

Snapchat is an interesting platform because the majority of these clips were only intended for very few viewers. When I downloaded the clips, I sought a true sample of my life. There are some clips that I can barely physically watch, but I decided to include them anyway. I believe that powerful art is vulnerable. I’m not sure what the tone will be of my performance. Some clips are comical while others are tragic. I hope that the glitch effect, fade, and threshold of my video clips will demonstrate how finicky memory is. There are several videos in which I don’t remember the context. My goal is to commentate on as many clips as possible in an insightful manner.