CMUN 297 Final Project


(If you didn’t notice, I took the weekend off from posting, this week. I find that people don’t really read the site often on weekends anyway, and the days/nights are so packed that I rarely have time to post something meaningful. It may become a trend. It may not. Anyway, to the post itself.)

The final project for Guerilla Media is fairly open-ended. Essentially, we’re challenged to either create or document one of the movements/products we’ve been studying. I toyed with the idea of making a mashup series, but decided that I don’t yet have the know-how.

Instead, Nicole and I have decided to document the DIY/Craft movement in Chicago. Video-style. Here’s the proposal we turned in:

For our final project, we are going to explore the DIY and craft movements in and around Chicago. The primary product of this exploration will be a digital video, though we may blog about our progress, as well. I, Nathan Bobinchak, will most likely include bits about the final project in my daily updates for this class’ blog at the very least. We will also explore distributing our final work to the places that we will be going to do interviews, especially if the final product is over 15 minutes or so long.
So far, we have mostly crafting and utilitarian DIY sources lined up. We’re going to be talking to a Loyola professor/artist about her pottery and why she and so many others create functional objects, even though the same thing can be purchased for very little money in a store. We’re also going to be talking to sewers and knitters on the same topic. The Chicago Craft Mafia and their Do It Your Own Damn Self exposition will contribute to that exploration, as well. The Old Town School of Folk runs a circuit-bending workshop that we hope to get some information from, but we’re also interested in exploring the DIY/traditional side of folk music. Finally, we will be analyzing the means of documentation for these movements, through places like Spudnik Press, the Alternative Press Center, and zine distributors like Quimby’s.

The following are our sources, so far:

Chicago Craft Mafia
Kate Biderbost  (potter)
Old Town School of Folk
Mess Hall in Rogers Park (art collective)
Third Coast Comics knitters
Renegade Craft Fair/Artists
Spudnik Press

I’ve already filmed at the “Do It Your Own Damn Self” craft fair (the header picture is the poster for it), and I’ll post some of the footage soon.

If you can think of anything else that we’re missing, please let me know! We want to get as broad a view of the DIY/Craft community as possible.

Instead of mashups today, here’s another cool bit of audio-witchery. From the Third Coast International Audio Festival:

If all of the millions of mp3s on the web were played at the same time, it would sound like a deafening cacophony. But composer and computer scientist Peter Traub has figured out a way to sift through this sonic detritus to create something beautiful. He created a computer program, called Bits & Pieces, which culls linked sound files from the web and then automatically blends them, generating compositions with the found sound. Bits & Pieces produces an original web song every 15 minutes.

You can listen to his installation here, or here (if you have slow internet). Since it always changes, it’s worth checking back on. You’ll need iTunes or the like to listen to it, mind you.



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