This is a cautionary tale on how the things that we consume are slowly consuming us. Being given such a great platform through Digezz, I wanted to explore a cause close to my heart: Digital consumerism. It seems every time I go to a restaurant or public event these days, it is an endless sea of people scrolling in silence or trying to take social media’s next most-liked video. It is no secret that over time our values have changed, but in this ever-evolving digital age, we are straying away from our humanity. Through online dating, cancel culture, and endless advertising on social media, we have become commodified. Friendships and relationships are just as expendable as a bottle of Coca-Cola. To be thrown away once the usefulness wears. But this is not how it should be. People are dimensional complex beings that no photo on social media can fully represent.
Cell phones and other electronic devices are used as an excuse to not interact with people, to seem busy, to deviate from awkwardness, to escape someone’s own thoughts. In addition to making life easier in a way where we have a world of information at our hands, also means that we can dissociate and not do what makes us human. Feel our emotions and connect with each other in the flesh. With extreme violence, hardcore pornography and endless propaganda, our brains are being molded into desensitized mush. My art piece represents my emotions and a visual representation on where I think society is headed if we do not have a change. Have a night out with friends without taking a photo. It should not feel so empty.
One of the major decisions I made while making this piece is that I did not want to spend time becoming a slave to my laptop. I painted and handmade every single piece of this project. The only online element I used was a video editing platform. Although it did not turn out exactly the way I wanted it to, my vision and intentions came through brilliantly and I hope that you, the viewer will take a moment and that this piece will start a conversation and that maybe once again we as humans can connect.
This project was such a fun exploration of an idea I have had for a long time. I have always had this videogame like villain in my head whenever I think of technology overtaking us and I was so excited to put that idea onto canvas and make an analog animation out of it. I ran into a few hiccups while going through the stop motion making. One of them was that the canvas was an awkward size, so I could not cut it our entirely, and my art skills were not delivering quite to my vision. I wanted to add so many more details and scenes, but I simply could not work out the feasibility. I wanted to add embroidered elements to the canvas, record a voice for my villain and make a broader social media narrative. At the end of the day, I had run out of time and energy to include every element that I wanted to. So, I really worked hard on getting the stop motion right and choosing relevant audio and visual effects. Overall, the animation turned out way smoother than I was expecting, but I would have liked it if I could’ve created it to fulfill my most ambitious vision.