GTA V and Red Dead Redemption © Rockstar; The Sims 4 © Electronic Arts; Minecraft © Mojang; The Last of Us Part II © Naughty Dog; Batman: Arkham Night © Rocksteady Studios; Sonic © Sega; Megaman © Capcom.
Artworks: Joshua Lee -JBS Gaming; Logic Films; Beatriz Vigario; CrazyFox; Frans Bouma; Akumath; Megan Miller; Irregular Saturn. Music: Bensound,com
This project investigates three creative practices (‘machinima’, in-game photography and gamics) performed by audience members, normally end-users, which make use of videogame assets to convey stories and produce works of art. ‘Press Start’ aims to raise public awareness of the possibilities of these practices for creative expression and educational purposes by engaging with the general public, artists, scholars and teaching professionals. The project will produce four publications, an art exhibition displaying works from United Kingdom and international artists, practice-based workshops, and a seminar.
Videogames are the dominant sector across the creative industries reaching 2.2-2.6bn users (Newzoo/Unity), and an estimated market growth to $180.1bn by 2021 (Newzoo). But videogames are also a powerful storytelling and artistic medium which has inspired people around the world. For many, videogames are not just something they consume, but the vessels to tell their stories and the canvases to express their art. This project attempts to bring these practices to the general public and teaching professionals, exploring 3 creative practices made with videogame assets, ‘machinima’ (animation), virtual photography, and comics, performed by end users, to raise awareness of the techniques and applications for creative and educational purposes.
‘Press Start’ covers multiple activities such as research publication and dissemination, curation and exhibition of works and workshops in England. The research engages with existing literature and practitioners’ experiences to investigate connections, techniques and motivations. The project will produce 4 publications, an art exhibition displaying works from UK and international artists, 2 workshops, in which audiences can engage with these practices, and a conference/seminar presentation addressed to teaching professionals. These practices may be a key method to achieve creative ambitions for people without the resources and knowledge, as well as an invaluable teaching asset for distant and blended learning models in the creative arts.
Phase 1Literature review and selection of interviewees and case studies.
Phase 2Interviews and data analysis
Phase 3Publications and Outreach activities
Choose your weapon:
Machinima is the art of creating animated movies with real-time 3D rendering environments. This includes the use of videogames, virtual worlds and dedicated software such as iClone and Movistorm.
Artworks: Joshua Lee -JBS Gaming; Logic Films; Beatriz Vigario; CrazyFox.
GTA V © Rockstar; The Sims 4 © Electronic Arts; Minecraft © Mojang.
The term in-game photography (also IGP) refers to the art of capturing images in videogames. Other related concepts are ‘gametography’, employed by practitioners as a synonym of IGP, and ‘virtual photography’, which apart from games also includes virtual worlds and environments, such as Second Life.
Artworks: Medjay Captures and Frans Bouma
Red Dead Redemption © Rockstar; Remember Me © Dontnod Entertainment; Ghost of Tsushima © Sucker Punch Productions; The Last of Us Part II © Naughty Dog; Assassin's Creed Odyssey © Ubisoft; A Plague Tale: Innocence © Asobo Studio; Marvel's Spider-Man © Insomniac Games; Fortnite © Epic.
Gamics is an umbrella concept which groups a number of practices involving the creation of comic stripes and graphic novels by using videogame assets. Practices such as screenshot comics, sprite comics and asset compositing comics are part of this overarching term.