Life or something like it
[metaphor project]

WASH 3D Project 4

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Life, or something like it…

Many of us are familiar with the way writers and musicians use figurative language or metaphor to communicate feelings and ideas. Visual artists also rely on metaphor to express ideas and connote meaning. Rather than presenting the viewer with a literal representation or illustration of an idea, metaphorical thinking can expand an elusive idea by creating conceptual depth.

Develop three different visual metaphors for a personal memory/experience. Look for material from your bio-map listings for which you can successfully craft a visual metaphor. You may not use overly literal representations of the things you remember, or symbols. Though powerful, these methods of communicating are not the focus of this project. Experiment with forms, materials, and images that can be used to communicate these ideas from your personal memory. Materials and technique are up to your choices.

Part 1: Brainstorming ideas/ making proposals sketches:

On Wednesday, March 9, BRING LAPTOP. You will be developing three metaphor project ideas and will need access to online research. Each idea/proposal should stand alone and on its own merit. Someone else should be able to construct your project proposal from this detailed proposal drawing and explanatory text. Use text, collage etc. whatever is needed, to get your ideas across in your proposals. Post each proposal (titled metaphor proposal #1, #2, #3) on your blog by end of day Friday, March 11.
Part 2: Critical review
Saturday and Sunday, March 12-13, review each of your table members 3 proposals. Read them carefully. Post feedback via comments for each proposal for every table member. Your comments should address: Do you get it? What is clear? What is not clear? Do you think it will work? Does the visual metaphor make sense? Is it a dead metaphor (cliché)? What about the material choices? Make suggestions to improve each proposal?

As a reviewer, it is your job to help another student clarify their ideas by asking them questions (in your post comments), and to help them find workable ways of realizing their project through suggestions. It is your job to help your table-mates flesh out a definite direction and a workable plan of action that seems likely to produce a fantastic piece of art.

Your blog proposals and feedback will function as a part of your process grade.

Part 3: Re-work your proposal
Based on reviews from your table-mates, rework each (3) proposal and post as updated metaphor proposal #1, #2, #3 before Wednesday, March 16. Indicate which of these three proposals you will be executing.
Part 4: Realization
Realize your piece using appropriate materials and techniques. Remember to be alert to the possibilities of the materials as you work with them. Every problem might turn out to be an opportunity in disguise! Your final project DOES NOT have to be, and probably won’t be, exactly what you originally intended. That’s fine, as long as it’s better! Post pictures of materials and process of creation over the break.

Your final metaphor project will be due first thing on Wednesday morning, March 23. Monday, March 21 bring project and all necessary supplies to class. You should be about 70% done constructing/assembling your project.

Evaluation criteria:
  1. Metaphor: Successful metaphoric use of a material, form, or image. Does the piece make a legible metaphor? Do viewers of your piece “get it” immediately and clearly, or are they left guessing what your point is? The piece may have several possible interpretations, but each should be clear: there is a difference between complexity and confusion.
  2. Craft and design integrity: do all the elements of the piece work together, or are there distracting elements?
  3. Ambition: sheer bigness, outrageous, unexpected materials, and incredible effort.
  4. Presentation: is the project is presented to maximize its effectiveness, as far as possible? Is the way the piece is presented thoughtful and appropriate?
  5. Parameters: does the piece follow the project parameters? No symbols or literal representations?