02 Harmony: Hybrid Collages

As the Harmony project comes to a close, I look back and can say I’ve definitely improved with my collages over time. My analog ones were definitely amateur and simple while my digital ones were a huge improvement and much more creative. Now with the analog-digital hybrid collages, I think I can safely say that I can put together some nice collages.

For this session I’ve made three collages. Unlike my last collages, I decided to not let the dimensions of a piece of paper limit what i could do. This time I made my collages into very complex shapes and each collage is of varying size. During the creation of these collages, a few more were made and ultimately scrapped as I was not satisfied with them. The scrapped ones seemed to simple and reminded me of my first analog collages.

My theme this time around is skulls, both regular and sugar skulls. I think I decided to incorporate skulls into my collages for a number of reasons. One is because a lot of the material objects or photos I had to work with had skulls or skull imagery. The store on SoCo Tesoros was one main contributor to the multitude of skulls. Another reason was that I found the skulls, the sugars skulls especially to be very eye-catching. They just pop out, to me at least, and hold your attention. Lastly, it is October after all, and Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Why not incorporate some Halloween magery into my work?

I will be bringing all three collages to the critique tomorrow. For now, here are three images I took of them. I will edit some better scans of them later.

Blog Post #6

Here is my Skill Inventory for my 5 classes.

1. The Art of Leadership through Speech

  1. My greatest strengths in Speech include: My confidant voice, well rounded outlines and ability to do impromptu speeches.
  2. For greater success in this course, I need to: Take more time to develop my outlines and speeches.

2. History of Games

  1. My greatest strengths in History of Games include: My passion for games, attentiveness and speaking/commenting on things when appropriate.
  2. For greater success in this course, I need to: Take more time to study and re-read chapters of my textbook even if I’ve read them before.

3. Visual Studies

  1. My greatest strengths in Visual Studies include: Being able to learn from past work, being able to put lots of time and effort into my work and having an understanding of how different forms of media are associated with each other. I also am able to accept constructive criticism on my work.
  2. For greater success in this course, I need to: Do more research on the types of projects we do in class to get a better understanding of them.

4. Rhetoric and Composition

  1. My greatest strengths in Rhetoric and Comp include: Being able to write coherent essays and papers, being able to utilize proper grammar and being able to accept constructive criticism on my work.
  2. For greater success in this course, I need to: Get other people to peer-review my work so i can improve my work even further

4. Rhetoric and Composition

  1. My greatest strengths in Rhetoric and Comp include: Being able to write coherent essays and papers, being able to utilize proper grammar and being able to accept constructive criticism on my work.
  2. For greater success in this course, I need to: Get other people to peer-review my work so i can improve my work even further.

5. College Algebra

  1. My greatest strengths in Algebra include: Getting all of my work done early, being able to do mental math to a decent extent and familiarizing myself with the material.
  2. For greater success in this course, I need to: Perhaps go to the math tutoring center on campus, as there are times when the homework does confuse me.

Computer skills:

  1. My computer skills include: Being able to use multiple softwares such as Photoshop, Audition, Premiere, Microsoft Office and various other programs.
  2. I still need to learn: Some higher level softwares such as game making software.

Research & writing skills:

  1. My greatest strengths as a researcher/writer include: Being able to take constructive criticism, taking my time when researching or writing down everything and citing my sources.
  2. I need to work on these aspects of research and writing: Using various sources, not just a few. As well as using MLA formatting.
  3. I learn best & accomplish most when: I’m given time to process what being presented to me and looking at examples.



02 Harmony: Digital Collages

Digital collages were definitely an interesting spin on the analog collages we had just worked on. Since I was already a bit experienced with Photoshop I had a lot of fun with this project. While it had been awhile since I had used the software I was able to remember commands and how specific tools worked.

I ended up making 8 collages in total. Some more simplistic than others but I enjoyed making each one.

I tried to incorporate red and green as complimentary colors, some having red, green or both wishing then. I also experimented with layering and perspective. Theme-wise, I seemed to have incorporated the words “love” into a couple of my collages. Some of my favorites ones have the word “love” in them which also pairs with my use of red. I also used leaves for green colors so nature is prevalent in my collages as well.

With some of my other collages I tried to use people or food, but those didn’t work out as well as I had hoped. I used a face in one of my favorites but I need to try and incorporate people better into my next collages.

Below you’ll see the 8 collages I made for this session, the first four being the ones I’ll bring to class for critique.


Blog Post #5

Part 1:

Having four upperclassmen talk to us about their respective majors of photography, art, graphic design and interactive game studies was quite interesting. As an interactive game studies major, it was nice hearing and seeing what someone with the same major has done over the last few years. However I enjoyed seeing the works of all the upperclassmen. I can’t seem to remember the names of each upperclassmen at the moment, but I’ll try to remember as best I can.

To start, the Photography major who spoke had very interesting and intriguing pictures. I loved the way she captured nature in some shots and people I others. One photo that stood out to me was the one of the three people in front a garage door and they each have a dog in their hands. I also enjoyed seeing her collages and ended up getting some inspiration for what i may do for my collages.

The art major’s work was quite interesting. I enjoyed her art style very much in her previous works, professional works and current work. I’m glad she gave out her Tumblr and Instagram at the end for us, as I want to see more of what she has posted. Hearing what she had to makes me want to get out my sketchbook and draw again. It’s been quite some time since I last drew and after today I think I’ll start again.

The graphic design major had a lot of eye-catching work and I thought all of it looked very nice. Typefaces seem very interesting and i want to look more into them. All of her work had a nice aesthetic to them and were very appealing to the eye. I hope that whole monthly box thing she talked about near the end goes well for her.

Now, Alexis (the only name I could remember) the interactive game studies major said a lot of things I agree with. Everything that has to do with our major, no matter how big or small takes work. Whether its homework for the course or what will be after graduation, you have to continue to work. And networking is important too, which is something I need to start looking into. Alexis’s presentation actually sparked a good discussion in my History of Games class right after the seminar.

While many of my peers agreed with what she had said about work and the course, a few were not exactly convinced. They seemed scared or put off by the way she described the amount of work or the things you may have to do to get some traction in the video game industry (specifically non-paid internships). But I don’t see those as bad things. Life isn’t easy, you constantly have to work. And sometimes you may put a lot of work into one thing and get no results, but thats why you keep working. You work to get those results that you strive for, the ones that inspire you. This is my opinion at least, and I feel that the few students that are worried about the work and lack of instant gratification need to step back and see the bigger picture. Because our major is not about just playing games or analyzing them. It’s to familiarize ourselves with the industry we will hopefully get into some day and be ready for what will be within it.

Overall, each upperclassmen offered me some inspiration and advice that I feel will help me on the journey that is my major. Each one did a wonderful job with speaking and I hope to hear from them again if they ever come back to speak.


Part 2:

1. https://www.niergame.com/us/ and 2. crashbandicoot.com

A two in one, but the one feature I like on both sites act the same. Both sites have a menu of some sort that lead you to whatever part you want very quickly. Instead of scrolling through you can easily click to what section you want to go to and be there.

3.  bizarreadventureart.tumblr.com

I like this site, not only because it posts artwork from my favorite series but because of how its formatted. It’s just art, plain and simple. I wish more of them had descriptions but I like the way this one is set up.

4. reddit.com/r/MortalKombat

While I don’t play the game itself, this subreddit has an amazing interface and everything is very well organized. The menu on the side is a nice touch and everything looks so uniform.



Blog Post #4

Part 1:

Currently in my Visual Studies we’re creating collages based on the principals of harmony. Meaning that we need to incorporate shape, value and texture as well as other elements into our collages. The assignment asks “How do you ‘make’ an image?” The two images below are the two “analog” collages I’ve made, meaning I found objects and used them to make the collage. The objects I collected were mostly stickers I found on South Congress. I figured I’d try and make an image out of a bunch of different images.  With at least one of them (the second one pictured) I feel that I used Harmony quite well and ‘made’ an image, but no so much with the first one.

Part 2:

  1. The strongest aspect of my work was definitely the negative space and symmetry of my second collage. With my first collage, while I used lots of color, it fell kind of flat. That leads to my weakest aspect.
  2. My first collage was too cluttered and it made too much sense. I tried to create a scene which didn’t get understood very quickly. I also didn’t experiment enough, staying pretty tame with my assignment. I would swap body parts for similar body parts for characters (ex. a dog head replacing a human head) and didn’t do enough with the surroundings.
  3. While i’ll get the chance to do some more collages in the coming weeks, I’m going to be sure to make things more strange, while also incorporating the elements of harmony into my pieces. I won’t be plain with what i put together like my first two. I’ll also make way more then two collages.
  4. I just need to be sure to spend as much time as I need and really think about how I can incorporate the elements  as well as things like layering and such.

02 Harmony: Analog Collages

Going down South Congress for this project felt a bit different then usual. Before I was looking for shots that could fit within my theme or followed Gestalt. This time however, I was looking for a certain kind of object. Stickers.

As you’ll see below, most of my object for this first set of collages were stickers, along with a few business cards, a baseball card and a mint. I’m sure people were giving me weird look as I would run up to a stop sign pole or crosswalk pole and peel off stickers, but then again I wasn’t paying attention to them. My main focus was trying to find interesting looking stickers.

The  five images below will show you the stickers and other object I found before cutting them. I had 33 objects in all. A decent amount, but I’m definitely getting more next time. For this first session, I only made two collages but had around 40 cut objects. My two collages look bizarre, and that’s something I like. I decided to make whatever I could out of the stickers and the end result is what I came up with. After going down SoCo so many times (for class or on my own time) I really started to become fascinated by all the stickers that are plastered all over.

In my first collage, I tried to make a place resembling a hang out spot. Looking at it, it reminds me of the cantina scene from the original Star Wars, all sorts of creatures and beings all in one common area. In my collage you can a dog-man hybrid, a two-headed being and even a drooling dinosaur. I find it funny how in the middle of all of this, the two normal looking men are just sitting back having a smoke and playing cards. It was nice building a little world. This first one is definitely my favorite of the bunch.

While my second collage seems a bit barren, thats intentional. There are four forces going against each other in this composition. Each has their own word and they all clash in the middle. While I was making this one, I was tempted to use some materials from a newspaper comic page or magazine I had to add more, but liked the simplicity of it. There isn’t anything distracting in the corners of the collage. Your eyes are drawn to any one of the four beings and their word.

I really cannot wait for the next few collages. I had a lot of fun making these first two and can’t wait to make more.


Blog Post #3: Hirohiko Araki

Hirohiko Araki is a mangaka or manga artist known for his work on the hit manga series JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure (JJBA). Araki has been working on JoJo since its release January 1, 1987 to present day with new chapters (Similar to comic book issues) being released monthly. Araki’s work with JoJo has been adapted into anime, movies and video games.

Araki inspires me because of the how much work he’s put into his series and how he treats it as an art. Araki takes inspiration from many different things he enjoys, something I do as well. Many characters within JJBA are named after famous musicians or songs (ex. A character named Robert E.O. Speedwagon or a character with a super power he dubbed “Metallica”) and certain illustrations of his characters depict them in poses similar to those seen in Greek sculptures and art. His artwork from JJBA has been featured in an exhibit at the Louvre and he has also collaborated with Italian clothing brand Gucci for an exhibition using characters from the fifth (my personal favorite) and sixth part of JJBA. His art style is just stunning and has been constantly improving over the years (Part 5’s being my favorite). I want to develop my own art style and improve, just like Araki has.

Hirohiko Araki, at the Gucci-JoJo exhibit.

Two image sets that really show how Araki’s art style has changed over the years. From Part 1 to early Part 7, Araki had to produce chapter weekly for the Weekly Shonen Jump, the magazine that published JJBA. In 2005, Part 7 was moved to the monthly magazine Ultra Jump, giving Araki more time to produce each chapter.

Artwork depicting Giorno Giovanna, the main character of Part 5: Vento Aureo and his “Stand” Gold Experience from Volume 1 of Part 5’s story.

A piece of artwork from the Gucci-JoJo (2011-2013) collaboration featuring Jolyne Cujoh, the main character of Part 6: Stone Ocean.


Cover of the “Rohan at the Louvre” book made for “The Louvre Invites Comic-Strip Art” exhibit that featured JJBA artwork. The book follows Rohan Kishibe, a character from Part 4: Diamond is Unbreakable”. This book can be found at the Munday Library and be checked out.

Lastly, artwork depicting many of the characters from the different parts of JJBA, in the style of Late Part 7.

Sources: comicvine.gamespot.com/…4040-63918/images



01 Gestalt: Photo Session #3

This last photo session really was a fun and interesting. After two sessions and critiques, I’ve finally narrowed down a theme and found laws of Gestalt with relative ease. I decided during this last session to not use my phone. This time I went to the library and checked out a DSLR camera. I also decided to go down S.Congress during the afternoon, as I went during the evening during the other two sessions.

So during the last two critiques, I realized I never really had a solid theme. I had themes, but they weren’t very strong themes. However, this time I have a concrete theme with my photos that all follow similar laws of Gestalt. As you can see below, I ended up going with a themes focused on heads, human and not. I found these in a little store focused on Mexican and other various cultures. I took plenty of photos, around 110, but noticed how these all went together.

As I had said in my previous post, I was going to attempt and find Gestalt with people again, but this new theme I realized I had going on seemed much better to me at least. That and I wasn’t able to photograph as many people as I did last time. I although i did end up doing something similar to what I said I would do. I mentioned I would try to take photos of faces, and to an extent I did.

As you can see, the most obvious law of Gestalt present in my photos is Symmetry. Every face is nearly perfectly symmetrical. My photos of Frida and the demon mask follow the law of Containment, as they were on a frame and bag respectively. Meanwhile the skull and tiger pillow were three-dimensional. I really do like how these photos came out, and hope others in class will enjoy them.

Every photo session felt better than the last and I can’t wait to see what other projects we’ll do for class. Below is my contact sheet, the 4 pictures I’ve chose for the critique and edited versions of them.


Blog Post #2: Parts 1 & 2

Part 1:

So I feel as though I used my time pretty efficiently this last week. Other then Saturday when I took that nap, but I bounced back from it. I also just found out we need to split up our posts, so sorry about last week! Here’s my chart of what I did last week.

Time Tracker_MichaelCarrera-21bivj4

Part 2:

So when it came to old art or past projects I’ve done, I didn’t have many picture from the last couple of years on my phone. So I figured, why not use old re-draws I did in middle school? Via my old DeviantArt account of course. The images I have posted today are only a taste of the many redraws I did in middle school and part of high school. While I have shifted from only redrawing things from series I liked, it nice to look back on these. Back then, before my skills in art were enhanced, I aspired to be like the artists who drew my favorite comics or cartoons. As I grew as an artist i shifted from only drawing things based off existing series and created my own characters. While I haven’t drawn every idea I’ve had, its nice to know I’ve become much more creative than I used to be.

01 Gestalt: Photo Session #2

So once again I traveled down South Congress to take photos. I ended up using my iPhone 6+ again, but spent much more time out and took much many more photos than you see here. I actually went down South Congress 3 times this week actually. Once on the 14th, my birthday when my family came to celebrate. I snapped some photos since I was there, only about 20. Then on the 15th I spent almost 3 hours on South Congress and took about 90 photos. Overall I ended up taking three times as many photos than I did my first time.

This time around, I decided to try and take photos that followed the laws of Gestalt. As you can see in my contact sheets, I have images that the Laws of Proximity, Symmetry, Common Fate and Good Gestalt. This most notable in the pictures of objects. The books (Proximity). The skull, cross, star, brick pyramid (Symmetry). The cicadas (Common Fate). And lastly, the apartment sign (Good Gestalt).

But as you can see I also took pictures of people, which was quite different. I was so used to taking photos of just objects last time I decided to out of my comfort zone and take pictures of people. One of them is of my parents which is one of the ones I chose as my favorites.

Now you may be wondering how the images of people relate to the laws of Gestalt. Well, since this was my first time focusing on really finding laws of Gestalt, I only had one thing I could connect the people with Gestalt. Clothing. In every photo of a person I took, their clothing follows some sort of law of Gestalt. My mother’s shirt followed the Law of Similarity and somewhat followed the Law of Continuity. The man with the guitar has a pattern on his hat that follows the Law of Continuity. The man in the plaid shirt followed Symmetry and the man with the cat just barely follows Proximity with the feathers on his shirt. While it isn’t easily conveyed in my photographs, Laws of Gestalt are there.

Next time I’ll try to connect the Laws of Gestalt with my picture of people in better ways. It’s much easier finding the Laws with objects. Perhaps I can do something like take close up pictures of people’s faces for Symmetry or even take pictures of groups crossing the street for Common Fate. I was trying something new and it came out decent. I can only try to improve.

Well, I can always try that in the last Gestalt photo session. I’m going to get even better photos than I have these previous times. I feel as though i am getting a bit better with my photography. I think I may even borrow a nice camera form the library for the last photo session. If not, my phone will do just fine.

I leave with my top 5 favorite photos unedited and edited that I’ll be printing for class on the 18th. I’ll be using the edited versions for my prints. (The first 5 below are the edited photos, the last 5 are the originals.)