ARE 494 Digital Ethnography - Nicole Vaillancourt

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Digital ethnography Petit Chat art galleryDigitalethnographyPetit Chat art galleryNicole Vaillancourt (nvaillancourt)ARE 494What is Digital Ethnography?Ethnography is the study and systematic recording of human cultures.According to Brian Hoey, the term is equated with virtually any qualitative research project where the intent is to provide a detailed, in-depth description of everyday life and practice.An ethnographer lives with the people he or she is studying, and participates in the community while also maintaining a degree of detachment. He or she also develops relationships with people who can give specific information about the community.Digital ethnography is the same, but in a virtual setting.Stages of Digital EthnographyStage 1: Data CollectionThis term is used to describe a process of preparing and collecting data. Data collection is used to learn and keep track of information about others. It captures the social meanings and ordinary activities of those known as informants in the field.Stage 2: Content AnalysisThis term is a research tool used to determine the appearance of certain words and/or concepts within textual data. The text is researched, and then find meanings and make inferences about the messages within the texts. Texts include books, essays, interviews, discussions, newspapers, speeches, conversations, etc.Stage 3: Comparative AnalysisThis term is used to find similarities and differences between two items in a research project.Research QuestionsWhat artwork forms and methods do they use?What does their artwork mean?What are their art preferences?Second LifeIve always wanted to make a Second Life account. My parents work for the Navy, and at their work, they have a Second Life department. They have a virtual Navy area online, and I always thought it was really cool. Making things online and interacting with others all over the world was always something that interested me. Taking this class was a way for me to experience Second Life and learn about something in the process. Ive really enjoyed my time in this class because of that. The ArtistI had a hard time finding someone to interview, so I posted on the Second Life community forums and reddit.com/r/secondlife asking for an artist to contact me.I found Trinity Yazimoto, an artist based out of France. It was difficult to find an interview time that worked for both of us, because of the time zone difference, so I visited her gallery a lot before she was able to answer my questions.Context and AtmosphereOutside was a very green, woodsy area. The exterior of the building was made of stone, and it was overgrown with plants. There was a small hole and ladder down into the actual gallery.Inside, the architecture was very medieval and dark. It gave off a creepy sort of vibe, which fit the actual art itself. There were a lot of hallways, filled with different pieces of artwork. There were also sculptures everywhere. One of my favorite pieces was the one in the photo, as it changed pictures every so often like a slide show. The sounds in and outside the area were crickets chirping. I would imagine the outside smelled very woodsy, and the inside like wet stone.Data Collection Sample[22:14] Trinity Yazimoto: hello, ive seen your post in the forum. i am a digital 2D artist and you may visit my gallery with the LM i m sending to you. i can do an interview now if you are online. im not native english speaker so my english wont be perfect, and it has to be done in chat and not voice then. if its ok for you, then let me know. im log everyday, if im offline my iMs go to my mailbox, so it's fine. (im french timezone, SLT +9)[22:18] nvaillancourt: Hi! Thanks so much for responding. Over chat is fine with me. [22:18] nvaillancourt: I just have a few questions, if thats okay. [22:20] nvaillancourt : Whats your real name (if you dont mind sharing)? Where are you located? Which piece of artwork is your favorite? What is the meaning behind it? Do you do art like this in real life? If not, what kind of art do you do, if any?[22:24] Trinity Yazimoto: im not going to tell my real name, sorry :) but i am from the south of france. my favorite artwork now is called fragments. it is composed of two parts: reflections of a movie and fragments of another life. it is the pieced artwork on the wall. it is my favorite because it reflects a part of who I am really. [22:25] Trinity Yazimoto: in real life i am a photographer and i use photoshop a lot. it is very simliar to what i do on second life. [22:28] nvaillancourt : What made you want to create artwork on Second Life? [22:30] Trinity Yazimoto: i began using SL in 2009 and started making clothes in 2010. i improve my skills after reading manuals and try to learn new things everyday. i started creating artworks after my cat Moumou left this world for going to angels. she had been the companion of my life for almost 17 years and creating art was a good way for me to heal my pain, and i feel my artitisc skills are gift she left to me when she left. shes with me everytime i create a new artwork.Interview SummarySL name: Trinity YazimotoRL name: UndisclosedRL Location: South FranceSL Location: Petit Chat Art GallerySL Art Style: Photography / PhotoshopRL Art Style: Photography / PhotoshopEverything in the gallery was made by Trinity. She even creates the clothing worn in the photographsThe photographs are Second Life photos, which she edits in Photoshop, and displays in the gallery as artwork.Content AnalysisPt. 1What is the art?She is a photographer and model maker. Her work is mostly in SL, but she does some photography in real life as well.What is title of their favorite artwork? Why?The artwork is called Fragments. The exhibition is composed of 2 parts: "Reflection of a Movie" and "Fragments of Another Life. Both reflect the artist within them, and are like a puzzle. Each piece is a fragment of her mind, and the viewer has to assemble them to see who she really is.Why make it?After her cat Moumou passed away, she helped cope with her loss by creating artwork in Second Life.How was it made?She takes a photo in Second Life, with a model wearing the clothes she has made. She then edits that photo in Photoshop until it looks right, and then puts it in the gallery. Most of the artworks have literary references, as the artist also loves books.Content AnalysisPt. 2Where are they from?She is from southern France.Expression:Color, line, etc.?A lot of the artworks have different themes to them. One wall seemed to be all very dark, depressing pieces. Another had bright, colorful ones with a lot of light. I believe the art is a reflection of her emotions and herself, as she began doing this as a coping mechanism.Collaborate with whom?She collaborates with a lot of people it seems, as the models are not always the same.Comparative Analysis & ConclusionsPt. 1The artwork done by this artist includes 3D modeling, texturing, photography, Photoshop work, and creative display in Second Life.The artwork is very varied, and shows a lot of change in style. It shows how she can adapt as an artist, and I feel it expresses her emotions. She originally started creating artwork to cope after her cat passed away, so I think that her art will always be tied to her emotions.Her artworks also sometimes have connections to books, as the artist loves literary works. For example, one is called Accept loss forever which is from a quote by author Jack Kerouac. Another is called Not all who wander are lost, which is a quote from famous author J.R.R. Tolkien.Comparative Analysis & ConclusionsPt. 2The artist mainly focuses on creating and editing digital photography. However, she also designs digital clothing online for Second Life. The clothing is also sometimes based on books, and she uses it to dress the models in the photo shoots. Comparative Analysis & ConclusionsPt. 3While photography is certainly possible in real life, using Second Life has its benefits. It offers interesting landscapes, fictional backdrops and outfits, and almost anything one can imagine. It allows for artists to show their work to millions around the world without becoming famous, and lets collaboration happen on a global scale. Artists can create for themselves, or can create for a cause or others. It also allows users to experience the art virtually, and makes the artwork interactive and dynamic. Three dimensional art is definitely more catered towards the users, and allows them to actually experience the artwork. Having the 3D aspect also makes it easy for artists to show off their work in a gallery, where users can walk around and view the artwork.ReferencesSLURL for Petit Chat Art Gallery: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Tuvuca%20Bay/32/167/22http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ethnographyhttp://www.brianhoey.com/General%20Site/general_defn-ethnography.htmhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnography