Tuesday, 27 December 2011

meditation timelapse

meditation timelapse from Nathalie Moore on Vimeo.

As a test, I created a time lapse of myself meditating demonstrating a sense of time. In total I sat in a stationary crossed legged position for an hour and a half. I took a picture every minute, and this is what it looked like.

I don't think i'll be using it in my film, because it doesn't have the same fluidity as some of the other videos that I have been making.

Monday, 26 December 2011

Børre Sæthre

I came across this installation artist, whom's ideas on space and the viewers' experience seem quite fitting in terms of my project

''The norwegian artist Børre Sæthre uses the term 'immersive mode'...a type of experience in which subjective awareness...appears to merge with the artwork, so as to create a sensation of a new, more powerful experience of totality''

''Experience is meditated through the body: the degree to which our sensory faculties are stimulated is linked to the impact that an experience has on us. An 'immersive' work may be described as a mixture of sensory and narcissistic pleasure offered to the viewer''

Sæthre's 'non-places' artworks aim to elicit sensual pleasure through sensory manipulation.
His installations appear to be quite simple, but effective giving a sense of space.

Oliveira, N., Oxley, N. and Petry, M. (2003) Installation Art in the New Millenium, london Thames and Hudson, ltd.

Friday, 23 December 2011

stress/calm back stop frame tests

red angry back stop frame from Nathalie Moore on Vimeo.

calm back stop frame from Nathalie Moore on Vimeo.

These are some stop frame tests I created using a stationary image of my back, then building up the image with water colour and expressive mark making

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

soft cinema

Soft cinema is an exploration of ''database cinema', which is computer software that generates variable screen layouts and selective video clips from a database that is unique to each film.

When it is presented in an installation, the film runs indefinitely without repeating the same edits. The films have been adapted for the dvd capturing a number of versions for each scene, and programmed to the DVD to select the version and older scenes in real time. Therefore, every viewing potentially produces a different film, although the voiceovers used are always the same for each film.

Below are some of the screen shots I have captured from the short film; Mission to Earth. The number of co-present screens show us what the main character is seeing, thinking, and remembering simultaneously. The motion graphics follow the story, visualizing its themes and the feelings of the character.

Multiple screens are used in a symmetrical layouts displaying film, animation, still image and text.

Kratky, A. and Manovich, L. (2005) Soft cinema; Navigating the database Cambridge, Massachusetts, The MIT Press (accessed 24th Dec 2011)

tree timelapse

tree time laspe from Nathalie Moore on Vimeo.

Here is a simple time lapse experiment I have done to demonstrate a sense of time passing. The flickering leaves are an imitation of how the eyelids flicker whilst one is meditating, which is something I hadn't noticed until it was filmed.

Still Photos

Here are some preliminary photos I took in a park in Guildford. I like how many of the photos catch the sunlight and shadows. Ideally I would like my film to have this kind of look. The park is an atmospheric place and whilst I was there I did feel quite calm.

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Alphaville - research

This is a link of a film clip from the french film; Alphaville by Jean-Luc Godard. This scene depicts Lemmy Caution and Natacha Von Braun discussing the meaning of love in Jean-Luc Godard's "Alphaville". Not much seems to happen in this scene in terms of physical activity, but the dialogue between the two actors presents a strong narrative on the subject of 'love'

Godard has montaged clips of film together, and certain frames are shown repeatedly, reverting back from one scene to another and then back to the first clip. So there is a sense that the clips become little motifs, that when montaged together create and effective narrative.

Here are some of the key frames, which give a sense of what is going on in each motif.

watch this link on youtube

rdtacuna(2006)Alphaville - Jean-Luc-Godard [online]available from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SHikpdf8ktM (accessed 18th December 2011)

Museum of Childhood

Toy Museum - projector inspiration from Nathalie Moore on Vimeo.

I was inspired by the visual projection of patterned sequences. I think my intention to make an installation film will look quite effective if it is projected onto the wall to give it that grainy, slightly transparent look to create a sense of atmosphere. I took several sequential photos, and made them into a little movie.

Meditation session at the buddhist centre

For research purposes I recorded a session at the buddhist centre. Once I had recorded the session, I had the laborious task of writing down all the things that were said during the session, which you can read in the section below;

Few of us can claim that our emotions are in a continuous state of harmony, or that we understand why we feel as we do. The key is in our everyday mind. Our everyday mind is the survival mechanism we develop through the ups and downs of daily life. It is built up of behaviour, habits and strategies we have learnt over the years in response to people, events and situations.

It is clever, informed cunning, but the everyday mind knows very little about our self. It’s not bad, but ignorant. Although it has enabled us to survive, it does not always work in our best interests. Behind the everyday mind lies our inner wisdom. This is the foundation of all living creatures. It is pure consciousness. Is the lynch pin of health.


Mindfulness in its totality has to do with the quality of awareness that a person brings to everyday living. Learning to control your mind, rather than letting it control you. Mindfulness as a practice directs your attention to only one thing, and that thing is the moment you are living in. When you recognise this moment, what it looks like, taste like, feels like sounds like, you are being mindful.

Further mindfulness is the process of observing, describing and participating in the reality in a non judgemental manor, in the moment and effectiveness. At the same time, mindfulness is the window to acceptance, freedom and wisdom.


Buddhist or not, the principals are the same…

Buddha recommended that the seven point posture as the best way to physically prepare the body for meditation.

Sit with a straight spine – stay relaxed. It is often said that the spine is as straight as an arrow. Or sit like a mountain, completely natural and at ease with oneself – legs crossed.

The spine has a natural curve, which should be relaxed, but upright. Usually a cushion is used directly under the spine. To enable this to happen, there is a slight tilt forward until a comfortable position is reached.

Shoulders open like wings – this enables the arms to be slightly away from the body and allows the breath to flow easier.

The chin is drawn in slightly. The head remains inline with the straight spine and balanced comfortably on the neck.

Hands in the mudra resting - The right hand is placed over the left, palms facing upwards thumbs touching and feeling no tension with the lower arms relaxed.

Eyes slightly open gazing downward along the tip of the nose to the floor. If you are disturbed by outside noise or anything when you begin to practice, it may be helpful to close your eyes for a while. Once you feel established in calm, gradually open your eyes and focus gazing down into space.

When assuming the seven point posture, you are imitating a Buddha. So begin to respect yourself as a potential Buddha. Feel the self esteem and aligning your own Buddha nature.

Be at ease; be as natural and spacious as possible. Think of your emotional thought ridden self as a block of ice melting in the sunlight of your meditation.

Begin from counting down from ten, one total breath being an inhalation and an exhalation keeping the breath as natural as possible. As you relax more, the exhalation may become longer. Each time when breathing out, let go relaxing and resting in the natural gap before inhaling again. No attempt should be made to control the breath.

When you are ready, stop counting and focus on the breath floating - entering and leaving the nostrils. When you are ready, turn your focus deeper inwards, and watch any thoughts that may arise. But not becoming involved in mental commentary, analysis or internal gossip. Let the thoughts come and go like waves on a calm ocean.

And with practise they will slow down.

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Narrative proposal

For the narrative project, I have chosen to explore the theme of meditation, as it is something that I have been practising for several months, and has positively benefited my daily life as a result. Therefore, I would like to give people the opportunity to understand what meditation as a practice means to me.

In context to my illustration practice, I will visually explore the reasons in which I would choose meditate (i.e. to reflect on the anxieties caused by the stresses of everyday life), the physical processes and factors involved with the practice and the after effect that the process has on me.

I have a tendency to get quite stressed and anxious, especially when I have a lot to do and think about. So, sometimes it is easy to get lost within your own thoughts, and it is at this point where you feel that you need to take some sort of action to relieve the stress. I realise that I am stressed/worried when my heart feels like a fast beating drum lodged in my throat. It forces my breathing to become fast and shallow and you can see the worry in face and body seems to completely tense up, and almost retracting into itself.

Once I start to meditate, the mind goes into overdrive and thoughts rush around, here there and everywhere. After a while they seem to slow down and thoughts are acknowledged, but not explored. After a time thoughts merely trickle through the mind and it becomes easier to think clearly. After the meditation session has concluded, I feel calm, but alert and the worries of life don’t seem to bother me as much as they did previously.

Given that meditation occurs over a period of time and that it encompasses all of the senses, I think it is appropriate to use a time-based medium to illustrate the theme of meditation in an interactive way, in the form of a film installation. I hope that the installation will provide a visual and sensory journey for the viewer of my personal experience of meditational practice.

During the physical act of mediation, it is recommended that when you begin a meditation session that you start counting from one to ten continually until you feel that your thoughts have settled, as initially it is difficult to control the flow of thoughts, mental commentary, analysis and internal ‘gossip’ within the mind. The breath is used as a counting gauge, one inhalation and exhalation of the breath is equalled to one count. This aspect of the practice will help to portray TIME, which is one of the elements of a narrative.

The narrative intent

The film installation will take the form of a film montage to be screened in an interactive space that complements the elements of the film. The film montage will be compiled from a bank of images, film, drawings and sound recordings that I have collated relating to my meditation practice. In order for the installation to be successful, there needs to be an awareness of synchronisation of sound and image – timing is important!!!

What I’ve done so far…

I have worked with a film student to create snippets of film illustrating my meditation practice i.e. sensory acuity of the body, the environment (need to document this). As the project progresses I will decide if I need to create more snippets of film.

I will form the narrative of the film initially through entries from a meditation diary I have been writing for several weeks. I will explore the potential to explore this text and turning it into an internal commentary.

I have also recorded an entire meditation session (with permission) at a Buddhist centre, where I have made recordings of some of the verbal readings that are read before and during the meditational practice. I have also made recordings of distractions and other relative sounds such as a singing bowl, which is often used during meditation. I hope to use and edit some of these recordings and use them in the film installation.

I have also made some simple time lapses and have started experimenting with editing these images together.

I have a meditational blog that I post relevant research and tests.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Meditation - What is it?

''Meditation is the art of slowing down the mind...and is a state of consciousness...''. (to be come enlightened) Something as conceptual as meditation is hard to describe, but the 'state of mind' in meditation in a metaphorical sense can be compared to the flow of oil flowing from one vessel to another. This flow is the natural flow of consciousness without interruption from the thoughts and desires that usually inhabit our mind.

Meditation comes only with practice; Learning to control the mind and focus for a period of time is quite difficult to achieve. this is why I have been trying to meditate regularly and writing in a journal to understand these thought processes before, during and after meditation.

In order to attain this state of relaxed awareness, it is necessary to prepare ourselves for the meditation process, which should not be rushed

  • It is best to have a special room for meditation that is free from distraction - SIMPLE
  • Setting up a table as a point of focal point of the room, with a candle (acts as a spiritual symbol)
  • starring at the flame of a candle before you start meditating helps concentration
  • A small vase of flowers
  • Burning an incense has a purifying effect on the energy of space - lavender-relaxing
  • Meditating in nature is far more favourable if you have the opportunity - red hill park
  • The most effective time for meditation is at dawn or dusk, as the atmosphere is spiritually charged.
  • The most desirable time is between the hours of 4-6AM, as the mind is clear and unruffled from daily activities
  • Make sure you are not disturbed from outside distractions
  • Sit in a comfortable steady posture with a straight spine and neck - NOT TENSE
  • A cross legged posture provides a firm base for the body
  • the body should be at ease in order to to disconnect from the sense of being the 'body' and focus on the deeper aspects of consciousness

  • Try to relax and make the breath rhythmic
  • inhale and exhale rhythmically until breath becomes light and completely silent
  • Meditation allows us to see things as they really are without escaping into imagination
  • over a period of time, coax the mind away from these destructive thought patterns - this is not easy to do...
  • Commitment to your well being by gently commanding the mind to be quiet for specific length of time , by focusing on only the present moment, your life will become immeasurably enhanced
  • Sustained concentration leads into meditation...
Pearson, J., 2003, The Sivanda book of medtation, London Gaia books limited

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Film Shots footage/photos

Despite the cold, I decided to do some filming with a fellow film production student. With my direction, he was able to advise me on the technicalities such as positioning of the camera, lighting and making the best use of the available space.