Hello and welcome to my conceptual website! Just a quick intro to myself, my name is Tyler Buhr and I am 17 years old. I have lived in Los Altos, California my whole life. I live a very aquatic life as I play water polo and swim. For this project, we were given directions to create a website with everything that we have done so far this year. You will see my work from English with my poems, as well as my work from Design with my photos. I have organized my website into five categories. My home page is this one you are on right now and is just an introduction to my work. If you’d like to see the poems I’ve done in English, then click on the pencil with the word poems above it. This section is filled with three different types of poems. If you’d like to see my haiku that I did in English, then you’d want to click on the mountain with the word Haiku above it. In this section you can see my one Haiku video from this year and how I created it. In the art section, you will find all of my work from design, which includes both of my photo projects as well as their artist statements. The music section includes the two pieces of music we made this year and a brief explanation on how I created them. I hope you enjoy my work!
Welcome to the Poems section! Here you will find all three of my poems from this year and a brief description of the creation process.
For our Ekphrastic Poem, we found a piece of art that inspired us or spoke to us during our visit to the MOMA. For those who don’t know, the word Ekphrastic means “a literary description of or commentary on a visual work of art”. The piece that inspired me was Weisse Konstellation
by Imi Knoebel. You can see a picture of it right below. If you click on that image, you can hear me read the poem.
Four blocks together,
All different sizes
My mind as blank as the Acrylic that coats it.
New depths reached,
soaring over the roofs of skyscrapers,
a compulsive urge to rearrange scattered tiles,
as flat as the walls.
In every direction they move in no direction,
They still move.
Free Verse Poem
For our Free Verse Poem, we were given the choice to follow our conceptual statement. My conceptual statement was “I am exploring the feeling of adoration while learning to love.” As I have spent most of my life in a pool, I was really inspired to make this connection. I found many similarities and metaphors for love in a swimming pool. I didn’t want my poem to be one of those cliche love poems, so I added some aspects that they never have, like explaining the bad sides of love. I recorded my poem in the studio using Pro Tools and then took that and overlayed it on images I pulled from online that related to my poem. I made my final project in Adobe After Effects.
For our Spoken Word Poem, we were told to create a poem that relied on the way we sounded while reading it. The poem is supposed to have a lot of emphasis on words and should sound different while reading it in your head versus hearing it out loud. I wanted to create my poem about something all kids can relate to, so of course I had to pick procrastination. After I recorded my project in Pro Tools, I imported the audio into Adobe After Effects and used text to create a visual to watch while listening to my poem.
For our Haiku, we were given a random concept statement that we were able to interpret however we wanted. For example, my concept statement was, “I am exploring the feeling of adoration through the experience of learning to love.” After we created our Haiku, we had to find a photo that we had taken or take a photo that we thought fit a background image for our Haiku. We were able to pick font color and line alignment when creating our final picture to make sure our Haiku’s came across how we wanted them to. When we took our Haiku’s to Digital Media, it was almost as if they came to life. We were able to create a mood for the listener by adding music that we had produced as well as our voices reading along with the Haiku so that you could hear how we wanted it to be read. We were also able to have the font and text on our photos move and appear as we read along.
At first, I was a little upset that we were not able to pick our own concept statement. Being assigned a random statement was not something that I wanted to risk, especially if I got a difficult one. But I actually ended up enjoying this challenge. It really makes you think deeper and maybe for some it pushes you to think outside the box. I enjoyed the freedom we got to work with for creating our haiku as we were allowed to create anything we thought fit our statement. Taking our Haiku’s to digital media really brought them to life which I thought was really cool.
This is a screenshot of my Haiku video production in Premiere Pro.
Welcome to the Art Section! Here you will find both of my photo projects from Design. The goal for both of these projects can be explained simply as just taking a photo, but there’s a lot more than that. We are told to go a lot deeper and experiment with things that scare us. We shouldn’t take photos that are so easily understood because there is no deeper meaning to those. I really tried to take photos that bothered me or that I thought wouldn’t turn out the best, but most of the time those were the photos I thought looked better. Here you will find both my Transport Photo and my Conceptual Photo as well as their artist statements.
For this project, we were assigned to take a photo of a wheel from a non-motorized vehicle from a very unusual angle. The object I used for my photo was an old antique tricycle that sits on a mantle over my fireplace. It sits there all day and serves no purpose besides decoration, but I’ve always enjoyed how unique it is. It has a big front wheel with two small handlebars on top. Behind that is a little seat and two back wheels with a basket in between. The whole tricycle is a charcoal greyish color and is made of metal. It gives off a rusty, worn down type feeling even though it isn’t old and I really liked that. I modeled my tricycle on top of my grill which added to the old feeling as the top of my grill was dusty. The top of the grill is also very flat so it was perfect for taking a photo towards the bottom of the wheel. Behind the grill are some ivy vines hanging down and I wanted to get those in my photo to add color. I choose to take my photo at a low angle because the wheels on the tricycle are very hollow and have a lot of open space. This inspired me to take a photo using one of the wheels as I frame. I framed one wheel of the tricycle using another wheel of the same tricycle and I really liked the effect that had. I wanted the effect of having the closer wheel out of focus and having the focus on the farthest wheel. I took this photo in the morning so that the sunlight was coming in from the east. This way it would light my background up but would not put too much sunlight on the tricycle. I did not want too many shadows in the photo because I did not want anymore dark aspects.
Adobe Photoshop is a very powerful tool and can change almost anything about a photo. We are given so much freedom to edit our photos however we want to fit our artistic ideas. In Photoshop, I started by making the background lighter. In the original photo, the leafs in the background did not pop and add color the way I imagined so brightening them was a start to that process. I then added saturation, which “warms up” the photo. Saturation is a way to remove some of the darks in a photo that may be affecting the mood and lighting. After the photo became lighter, I noticed that it looked unnatural. I did not want to undo any of the lighting I had done so I added shadow to counteract the brightening. This gave the photo the contrast I wanted of darker in the foreground and lighter in the background. There were some dog hairs and little pieces of dirt or rock that made it into the photo and were very distracting. I removed those by using the Color Blend tool, which takes color from around the area you are trying to get rid of and covers the obscenity. After all of these actions, I felt that my photo fit exactly what I wanted and I was done with my process.
Conceptual Art Production
I am exploring the feeling of adoration when learning to love.
The photograph I took contains 4 major aspects that come together to support my concept statement. The main object that stands out in my photo is the stuffed animal puppy. When I hear the word adoration, my mind shoots to things that I adore or find adorable. I know everyone loves puppies and all puppies are adorable, so I found the cutest toy puppy to represent this feeling. The puppies big eyes really add to the cuteness, which made the decision easier on which puppy to pick. The puppy has a pair of reading glasses rested upon his forehead, as someone would do when taking a break from reading or writing. The glasses themselves represent the aspect of learning, but I wanted them resting on his forehead to show that during the process of learning to love there may be times to take needed breaks. The puppy is sitting in a bowl that is filled with red dyed water. I wanted the water to be red because you usually associate the color red with hearts, roses, and others things love related. The water represents the feeling of love itself, as when you learn to love you can get encased in it, like what the water is doing to the puppy. The water level is up to the snout on the puppy and can be interpreted in two different ways. Some may see it as drowning, while others may see it as being perfectly immersed. I wanted this effect to let the viewers mind pick which part of love they want to see. If they see drowning, they may think that love is overpowering and controlling, even possibly taking over someone's life. Others may see it as being perfectly immersed, associating love with being submerged up to your head in a warm bath. These people may see love as a joyful or happy aspect to one's life. The glass bowl holds everything in this photo together. I wanted the glass bowl to represent a relationship, as it is strong but can be very fragile. It holds all the components together The glass bowl has an uneven brim with one side higher than the other. The water reaches close to the brim on one side, almost spilling out, but on the other side the water is far from reaching the top. I wanted this to represent how uneven love can be, and how through the process of learning to love you may not have a perfect symmetric relationship and that isn’t a bad thing. The bowl is not perfectly balanced at the top, but still is able to contain all the water. Showing that even if you do not have a balanced relationship, you can still find love. The white background is a bright color to make everything in the foreground pop. I did not want it to be distracting and thought that the white background complimented the red, making it more vibrant. While shooting my photo, I experimented with many angles. The one angle I really liked was a front on point of view, facing the puppy’s face. This way you could see every aspect of the photo, including what the puppy looked like above and below the water. I lowered the camera down towards the surface more, just slightly below the water line. This gave the effect almost as if the puppy was looking directly into the camera, which allows a deeper connection to the viewer. This intimate eye contact with the viewer can give off a feeling of adoration. The lighting I used needed to be above the bowl so that I had no shadows on my background. Conveniently, I had a table in my house with a light hanging above it.
When I first opened my image in Photoshop, I knew my first step was to find a way to lighten the whole thing. I played around with a few knobs and nothing really had the effect I wanted. Out of annoyance, I dragged the temperature slider all the way to the leftmost point possible. Surprisingly, this was the exact change I wanted. Turning the temperature down “cooled” my photo, bringing out the blues and whites. My original photo was supposed to have bright white background, but they turned out more yellowish. With the added cooling effect, my photo now has a bright white background and looks like it had studio lighting. This allows the viewer to focus more on the actual objects in my photo rather than being distracted by an ugly background. The next thing I did was to touch up on some little details that I felt were necessary to remove. There were little pieces of fur on the puppy that stuck out and were distracting so I used the Healing Brush Tool to remove those. The Healing Brush Tool takes whatever is around the spot you are trying to remove and covers it with similar textures and patterns. I used the same tool to remove a glare that was reflecting off the glass as it brought too much attention to the wrong areas of my photo. The background of my image was basically just a white sheet that I had found in my house. I tried to set it up as best as possible to make sure there were no wrinkles, but that was almost impossible. One thing that I have learned about Photoshop is that nothing is actually impossible. Photoshop allows us to edit in so many different ways that allows us to put our “impossible” ideas actually on the photo. To remove these wrinkles, I used the Healing Brush Tool again. I traced over the lines with the tool a few times and they were gone. Without the wrinkles, the background looks very smooth and is even less of a distraction.
For this project, we were assigned to create a parody of a song by taking out the lyrics using Pro Tools and then writing lyrics of our own and recording them over the instrumental track. For my project, I used the song "On Top" by Beyonce and created "Glove and Mop", a song about cleaning!
For our Experimental Music, we were given full control of creating a song from scracth in Pro Tools. Using a handful of plugins such as Boom and Xpand, I was able to create this piece of music and was able to use my full creativity in the process.