Forum Thread: Explore - Sarah Surabian

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great stuff.  Once again no smell in exercise 1, its amazing how visual a culture we are that it so dominates our stimulus input.

Exploration #2 , Experience Collection

1.) I rode the mechanical bull for the first time in Hermosa Beach on Sept. 10.  

2.) I went to someone's 21st birthday.  Someone else was celebrating their 40th birthday there.  That's never happened to me before.  El Segundo, Sept. 11.  

3.) I saw a little rattlesnake in my friend's garage.  It freaked me out.  Oak Park, Sept. 12.

4.) I realized how boring it is to edit interviews about video games, especially the Thor video game.  Los Angeles, Sept. 13.  

5.)  I discovered a guy who was in Star Trek (2009) is going to play Thor in the movie and the video game.  Los Angeles, Sept. 13.  

Exploration #3, Collecting Objects that Reflect Light

Here are a few of the objects I found that reflect light:

A glass, my water bottle, a lid to a Ralph's container, silver bubble wrap, clear bubble wrap, plastic wrap, a CD, foil, a bottle, the inside of a bottle cap, the top of a salt shaker, an "R" from a "Happy Birthday" banner, and a silver vase.  

I also found some other stuff that I didn't take a picture of, like the clear speakers I have, the metallic writing on CDs, my cell phone, the casing to my external HD, the lights blinking and reflecting off the countertop from my router, Exacto-knife blades for my art class, and a silver picture frame.  

Would love to see shots of refracting light.

4.) Exploration 4: collections

On my way to school this morning I found a magic marker, a straw, a pen with a phone on it, a cupcake wrapper, string, bark, paper clip, a red pen, grass, a flower, leaves, and sandpaper. 

5.) Exploration 5: Collection based on the first thing you see.  I found a piece of paper and went from there.  I found the NY Times, quite a few fliers, paper towel, kleenex, a receipt, a lid to cigarettes, gum wrapper, paper bag, a napkin, lined paper, and a magazine ad.  

NICE.  Examine the textures of the paper and notice the dynamic range of the medium.  Don't worry about shrinking images down to post, they will all scale to fit on the page, but I would love to see these hi-res.

Exploration #6 - Archaeological Dig

The first object that I found that related to my childhood is my stuffed dog, Puppy-I. Dogs have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.  Choosing Puppy-I led me to pay more attention.  Then, today I saw a golden retriever sticking his head out of a car window.  This instantly reminded me of all of my dogs.  

I can tell so many stories about my golden retrievers.  There's the day we got Abby (my second dog) as a puppy and she fell into the stream.  Or there's the time Amber (my third dog) broke the cable and the air conditioning...twice.  No matter how many stories, the point is that I am a dog lover, and they will continue to be in my life forever.  

  Me as a baby with Auggie.

Wakeboarding with Abby.

Senior pictures with Amber.

Exploration #8 - Cracks in the neighborhood.  I took pictures of the sidewalks surrounding my internship office.  

Some grass growing through



Lots of grass

Lots of cracks 

Exploration #9 - Case of Curiosities

Things I found: A sticky note, a "Silly Band," part of a stick, a rock, a bobby pin, a piece of a magazine, a mint, a penny, and the small box with a cat on it.  

Exploration #10 - One Thing

I chose to examine my mouse.  

On the top half I noticed a scuff, the round, grey ball, black marks on the cord, the USB at the top, the Apple logo on the USB, the FireWire logo on the USB, the light grey buttons on the side, light reflecting, the silver top of the USB, two square indentations on the USB, a tiny line through the silver part of the USB, and the red light on the back of the mouse.  

On the bottom half I noticed the Apple logo, Apple text, other logos, a small serial number, a larger serial number, scuffs, a light grey oval, an indentation of the Apple logo on the bottom-front, a black speck, dust inside the indentations, and a sticky spot.  

Exploration #11 - Differences

I chose to compare my roommate's bracelets.  Here are some differences:

1.) What they're made out of - beads, silver, shells, leather, string, yarn, jade, plastic, cloth

2.) Their color - silver, different shades of green, blue, rainbow, brown, black.

3.) Their size - skinny, medium, thick, bulky

4.) How many strands there are - some have one strand, some have two, and some have three

5.) How shiny they are - some are matte, some have a luster, and some are shiny

I'm going to do these a little out of order: 

Exploration 16 - Survey

I asked five of my friends 5 questions:

Exploration 13 - Collecting Type

I chose to compare different typefaces used in television ads.  

The Event uses big blocky lettering and flips the "E."

Chase uses blocky lettering as well, but puts some sort of distortion filter to give the illusion that the type is being "chased."

Lone Star uses a serif font which makes it look more old-fashioned.  This is good since the show is set in Texas.

No Ordinary Family uses a sans-serif font.  I dont really see how this font works with their ad.  It is also a font McDonalds used to use, so, when I see this ad I only think of french fries.  

Exploration 12 - A walk in my neighborhood

I documented what I heard and saw on my walk to lunch on Monday.  I eat lunch by the food trucks in the Miracle Mile District. 

Things I noticed were hamburger chairs, crows with their mouths open, a fountain, a sculpture in the fountain, cars, tree,s parking meters, dogs, many different food smells, a truck with a pig on top, sweaty people (it was 111 degrees), ice in the trucks melting, plastic utensils, parking enforcement car, fruit cart, street merchants, segways, LACMA, light sculpture, ants, postal box, a store with light fixtures, a Chinese restaurant, bushes, a muddy spot in the grass, and my delicious sliders.  

Exploration 14 - Sound Map

I decided to sit at the pool in my apartment complex for an hour.  

Things I heard were the noise from the fountain, gardeners, conversations from apartments behind me, kids playing in the pool, someone's loud iPod, conversation next to me, a drink spilling, food grilling, birds, distant airplanes, a girl talking on the phone, bubbles in the hot tub, pages from books turning, the gate opening and closing, and flip flops.  

Exploration 15 - Consumer

Things I purchased yesterday were gas, two sliders and fries, an enchilada from Haciendas, and several water bottles.  

Technically, I consumed everything I purchased yesterday (including the gas for my car). 

Exploration 17 - Sculpture

Today I made a sculpture of things that were sitting around my desk at work.  It was supposed to be some sort of house, but I'm not sure how well it turned out.  

Exploration 20 - Small Thoughts

What will I have for lunch today?  That sandwich wasn't very good.  I should wear rain boots.  It's raining.  It's cold.  I want some gum.  I don't want to write this paper.  I want a Coke.  I wish I brought an umbrella.  I have to fill my car up with gas.  I hate getting gas.  I dont like driving.  I hate traffic.  People cant drive in the rain.  Its dark out.  I am going to wear my glasses.  I'm going to check my email.  Oh, LMU got a new President.  I'm going to put on this mask.  What am I going to be for Halloween?  

Exploration 18 - Structure 

I documented our hall closet.  No one ever opens it.  Inside there is an AeroBed, two plastic bins filled with holiday decorations, a box full of Halloween decorations, re-usable grocery bags, a vacuum, a dolly, a roller, paper towels, plastic bags, and Apples to Apples.  It is a very random closet.  

Exploration 19 - Found "Paint"

I looked for "paint" in our fridge.  What I found is orange juice, milk, mustard, mayonaise, jelly, salsa, salad dressing, horse radish, peanut butter, Gatorade, Snapple, ketchup, crescent roll dough, and Bailey's.  

Exploration 21 - Your Favorite Street

My favorite street is 8th Street in downtown Boise, ID.  It has some of my favorite food around, and my dad's office is a block a way.  It is a place that has a lot of memories for me and I go back every time I visit home.  

Here is my map: 

I couldn't go back there myself so I tried to find pictures online, but they don't do justice.  

This is my favorite restaurant in the city, which happens to be on 8th street as well. 

Exploration 22 - People Watching

I sat at Foley Pond at LMU for an hour.  Today there were a variety of different people around.  A lot of girls (including myself) were wearing rain boots even though it wasn't raining.  A lot of the guys were wearing athletic shorts and tee-shirts.  It was funny to see the differences in the way boys and girls were dressed.  Everyone was getting coffee at the coffee cart.  During convo it got really full.  

Here is the map I drew, the stars represent people, the one highlighted in pink is where I was sitting.  

Exploration 23 - How To Uncover a Mystery

1.) I have always wanted to know why soda from a soda fountain tastes so much better than soda out of a bottle or can.  

2.) Research - I researched the answer online.  I think it is better because it is fresh.  Also, some people disagree with me and think that the only way a Coke is best is out of a glass bottle.  Anyway, the way the soda fountain works is CO2 is dissolved into water by increasing the pressure of the CO2 gas using a carbonator.  Then the flavoring is added in.  It is syrup that mixes together with the carbonated water and exits out the nozzle.  The nozzle is only active when a customer pushes the button.  So, the drink is mixed right when you push the button, and its very fresh.  Also, the ice bin keeps the soda cold as well as giving you ice for your drink.  I never knew that it was mixed exactly when you push the button, but that clears up why I like it so much better.  The only downside is that sometimes the syrup can be bad.  

3.) Leads - In my research, I discovered that Coke is making a new soda fountain.  This one is interactive.  Coke is calling it the "fountain of the future."  This fountain offers over 100 flavors.  You can chose to have a Coke, but then if you want to flavor it with something you can.  This fountain also has a touch screen.  So, when you select a product, such as a Coke, the fountain offers you several different flavor options for that drink.  I've never seen one of these soda fountains, but I really want to find one!  

4.) Now I'm going to try and see if I can find any of these fountains in LA!

5.) I've found out that the Coke Freestyle (thats the fountain) is being tested somewhere in LA.  I still cant figure out where.  It is also being tested a lot in Atlanta (Coke's headquarters) at places like McDonald's, etc.  I'll get back to you guys if I find one of these near us.  

Exploration 24 - Combinations

I looked around and took pictures of signs and compared them.  

These two signs both have a black backdrop, but the massage sign looks very serious, whereas the do not enter sign doesn't give me that vibe, it seems a lot happier despite the black background.  

I compared a restaurant sign with a campaign sign.  The KFC/Taco Bell sign is basically a logo, whereas the Nathan Mintz sign only has one element of a logo, the check mark as the dot of the "i."

I also compared a speed limit sign to a high voltage sign.  The speed limit sign looks happy and not very threatening.  I think this is because the spacing of the letters and the white background.  The high voltage sign looks more intimidating because of the yellow background and the closely spaced letters.  

Water can make different shapes for different reasons.  It can take the shape of what it is in, it can make it's own shape (water droplets) or it can make shapes in itself (water ripples).  

Exploration 27 - Accidental art

This is the "art" I found on a walk.  It is a weird fire hydrant thing that is connected.  It's pretty cool because it is symmetrical and brightly painted.  I'm sure it also has some sort of function, which makes it cooler.  

Exploration 26 - Becoming Leonard Cohen

Exploration 28 - Blind Observation 

I observed my keys in my sweatshirt pocket.  There is a flat, oval shaped plastic thing with a chip off the plastic on one edge.  There is also a cold, metal thing that is wide on one end and skinny on the other.  It has jagged edges on one side and engravings.  There is a round, cold thing with an engraving through the middle.  There is also a fat, plastic thing with a piece of rubber in the middle.  The rubber is a little rough.  There is also a small, skinny plastic thing with something engraved on it towards the top.  

Exploration 29 - Tactile Boards

I collected things to glue onto paper, but half of them wouldn't stick.  Instead, I made my roommates close their eyes and handed them things asking if they could figure out what they were/how they felt.  Here are some of the things I used: 

None of them could figure out what the leave and pine needles were.  I also used the tail of a stuffed squirrel and one of my roommates thought it was foam.  One roommate couldn't figure out what the magazine was.  It was pretty cool to see that they didn't know what some everyday objects felt like.  

Exploration 30 - Travel History

Yesterday I worked at my internship from 10AM to midnight.  What we were working on is a Jaymey Johnson music video directed by Matthew McConaughey. Here is the route I take to get to work.

Since we are working on the Jaymey video, the office gave us a copy of his CD.

The video is for the song, "Playing the Part."  It follows a guy in a gorilla costume around LA.  The gorilla gets mocked by everyone around him.  In the end of the video the gorilla walks into a bar and dances to the band.  At the end of the video, we find out that the gorilla who was mocked is Matthew McConaughey.  

In several shots of the video, they created a mask for the gorilla's POV.  To be able to see what the gorilla would see, Matthew was walking around the office wearing the mask.  I couldn't take a picture of him because I didn't want to be creepy, but here is what the mask looked like.  

For dinner we had Ethiopian food, which turned out to be too spicy for me.  Still, it was cool to try it.  

When it got later, I had to  have a lot of Coke to stay awake.  

We finished the video at around midnight.  It was a really cool day because as an intern, I got to do a bunch of stuff to help with a pretty high profile client.  The music video is a little weird, though.

Exploration 31 - Found Sounds

I looked around my apartment to see what sort of sounds I would find.  

The mini fridge makes an annoying hum every so often.  

The TV is usually on in our apartment as background noise.  

The big fridge makes this annoying ticking noise every half hour or so.  

Exploration 32 - World of Magic

The magic objects I found are my TESA card for the editing room and a giant pen we found in our apartment.  The card opens every door that can be opened at LMU.  It allows you to get in wherever you need, including faculty parking (which is the reason it is magic).  

The magic pen is what we use for our grocery lists.  Its powers are wonderful, because when we write our grocery list, whatever we write down appears on our doorstep.  And, it isn't limited to just groceries.  For example, if we write "pizza from Pizza Hut" that is what will arrive.  

Exploration 33 - Arrangements

I used white sticky notes to arrange in different orders.  

An "S"

A cube

A circular shape

A pyramid

Exploration 34 - Interesting garbage

A chinese menu, a tennis racquet, an ad I found on my windshield, a clear plastic bag, a printer ink box, a receipt, and an aluminum Coke bottle.

Exploration 35 - Invisible City

This is Boise, my home, with a little added color.  I think the color makes it look sort of mystical.  It goes from a regular fall day to a day that is reflecting all the fall colors.  

Exploration 36 - The Truth About Inanimate Objects

My friends and I have a really big, long-lasting inside joke about an inanimate object.  He is a stuffed squirrel named Johnston.  He lives on the mantle in our apartment and he has lived with us for four years.  My roommate Tricia and I actually bonded freshman year through jokes about Johnston and his nights out.  Usually when we go out on the weekend or go on a trip we take Johnston with us and take pictures of him around the city or other cities.  He has a very glamorous lifestyle.  Last year, he made a Facebook.  

Anyway, Johnston has a past that we've created for him and now he has 25 friends on Facebook.  He is a very elaborate inanimate object.  

Exploration 37 - Time Observation

I've been sitting at my computer for a few hours finishing up some homework.  While sitting here, I've noticed several different ways I can tell that time is passing.  

The clock on my computer.

The clock on my microwave.

The Halloween lights.  If they're on, it is nighttime, if they're off it is the daytime.

How many episodes of Millionaire Matchmaker play in the background shows me how many hours have passed.  

Once the new Joshua Radin CD stopped playing I knew it had been 49 minutes.  

Exploration 38 - Grocery Shopping

I think it is really interesting that they always put the chips next to the soda in almost every grocery store.  I guess they assume that people buying soda are likely to be the people who buy chips and junk food as well.  

i also think it interesting that in the soda aisle almost every color is red.  This makes me think that Coke is clearly leading Pepsi right now.  In the chips side of the aisle Frito Lay had the most products.  

Exploration 39 - Food As Art

I haven't had time to cook myself a meal all week because I have been working late at my internship.  So, instead, I decided to share a specific food that I believe is art.  This is a French Dip sandwich, my favorite.  Only, instead of using the Au Jus, they create a horseradish mustard dip.  It is absolutely divine.  There are also some shoe-string fries there.  This was ordered from The Little Next Door.  Delicious.  

Exploration 40 - Altered States

I looked at things through high-contrast.  I think it would be really cool if colors were brighter than we see them.  

Exploration 42 - Local Lore

There is a lot of debate over whether or not the blue turf at the Boise State football field is cool or gaudy.  

I interviewed my room mates about it to see what they thought.  

Grace - Blue turf is ugly, but BSU is #2!!

Tricia - Loves the blue turf, could care less about the team. 

Emily - Didn't even know they had blue turf, but thinks its a little over the top.  

Me - Love the team, hate the turf.  I think it is trying to draw too much attention to our team.  

Then I asked if anyone would refuse to go to a game because of the turf, and everyone said they would still love to go to a BSU game.  

I actually quite enjoy the blue field! I saw it for the first time at my grandparents not too long ago, and I loved it! I wish every team had colored fields!! So much cooler than green :)

Exploration 43 - Found Paper

I walked around the LMU campus and found lots of different paper:  

There was a sticky note, paper towel. paper from a magazine, a receipt, a magazine ad, an LMU ad, a gum wrapper, toiled paper, and an ad for an event.  

Exploration 44 -Library Exploration

"The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" knows the "Art of Racing in the Rain,"

But the tattoo hurt like the heat of "A Thousand Spendid Suns."

At least they put down the "Totilla Curtain" to hide her "Cut!"

Now she's got a permanent reminder, she'll need a "Wrinkle in Time" to clear her "Skin."  

Exploration 45 - Self Ethnography

I figured out how far I drive on average during a 5 day week

On Mondays and Fridays I drive to and from my internship, which is located at 5315 San Vicente Blvd.  It is 13.3 miles each way.  Therefore, in a day I travel 26.6 miles. Since I go twice a week, I travel 53.2 miles to my internship every week.  

On Tuesdays, Wednesday, and Thursdays I drive back and forth to LMU.  I would walk, but all of my classes end after dark and I don't want to walk home alone.  A trip to LMU is .8 miles, so round trip it is 1.6 miles.  Since I do that for 3 days I drive a total of 4.8 miles to LMU/week.  

The total of miles I travel per week is 58 miles.  That doesn't seem like much, but traffic makes it seem like I drive a lot further.  Since this is the tenth week of school, I have traveled about 580 miles, just back and forth to school and my internship.  

Exploration 46 - Found Patterns

A notecard I found on my desk

A placemat on our table

Our ottoman

The stucco on our balcony

The paper covering around our lamp

Exploration 47 - Found Stains

In this picture, there are three elements: a carpet stain, a ring from a cup of coffee, and a red wine stain.  I took pictures of the stains and then cut them up in Photoshop.  Then, I changed all of their hues to make it look more colorful.  

Exploration 48 - Finder Exploration

I used several pictures I took and cut out certain sections.  It turned into a pretty cool collage!

Exploration 49 - Found Words - Collecting Words I Find Interesting

Onomatopoeia - a word that imitates the sound it represents

Apropos - Very appropriate to a particular situation

Gallimaufry -  a hodgepodge, jumble; a mixture of diverse things

Brobdignagian - of colossal proportions or extraordinary height; gigantic.

Oolert - the barn owl 

Foofaraw - frills and fancy finery

Exploration 50 - Found Smells

Today I walked from my apartment to a massage studio and back.  It was amazing how much I smelled when I began to pay attention.  When I walked out of the apt., I smelled Lysol, since they were cleaning today.  Then in the elevator, I smelled a fruity aroma, something they spray in the elevator about every week.  When I got outside, I immediately smelled the plants, then when I walked by the pool I could smell a little bit of chlorine.  When I began walking on the street I could smell the KFC/Taco Bell that is across from us.  When I walked by all the restaurants on the way I could faintly smell their food as well.  I walked by a pizza place, an Italian place, and a Mexican restaurant.  Then, when I got into the massage studio it smelled very fresh.  I could also smell some of the massage oils and lotions that were around the studio.  

Exploration 51 - Non-Linear Life

Exploration 52- Mini Ecosystem

This weekend I am watching my friend's little sister in Oak Park.  We went to a few different streams and collected water with a little dirt in it.  We left it outside all weekend, but unfortunately, nothing seems to be happening.  I think what I got out of the water may have been dead or died in the process of me taking it.  

Exploration 54 - The Language of Trees

My friend's backyard in Oak Park is astonishingly beautiful, so I expected to find lots of parts of trees.  Unfortunately, their backyard is also very well-kept, so there wasn't too much lying around.  

I found as much as I could and arranged them in a few different ways.  I found out that parts of palm trees arent nearly as pretty as palm trees as a whole.  

This picture shows what I have: a piece of grass, two pieces of the palm tree trunk, and two parts of leaves from the palm tree. 

This arrangement represents a palm tree. 

This represents a baby tree that is just sprouting up.  

Exploration 55 - Transforming an Everyday Experience

Today when I got to work I took my glasses off for about two hours.  My vision is -2.25 in both eyes, so it isn't horrible but it isn't very good either.  At first it was pretty hard to adjust to everything being blurry.  I couldn't really tell who people were until I figured out what color everyone was wearing.  I also tried to grab a Coke from the fridge and ended up with a Dr. Pepper.  After a few hours of bumping into corners and not being able to see I began to get a headache.  After that I put my glasses back on and things were much easier.  Also, when the owner of our company came in I realized it probably wasn't the best idea to try this exploration at work.

Another way I transformed things was in my art class this week.  We were supposed to chose a black and white image and use type to fill it.  I think doing something like this in AE could be really cool!

Exploration 53 - Found Writing Utensils

I didn't do this one last week because I needed to buy paint for my art class, so I figured I would wait until then.  

I used a Q-tip, both ends of my "brush picks" a candy bar, a rolled up receipt, and a headband.  I think the candy bar wrapper turned out the best.

Exploration 56 - How To Incorporate Indeterminacy

For this exploration, I let my friend guide me while I was driving.  I had no clue where we were going, and all she would only give me directions when we were very close to where we needed to turn.  We ended up at El Torito for dinner, but I had no idea where we were going until we got there.  It was a little weird  to go somewhere without knowing where or why.  El Torito may not have been the most creative destination, but it was still delicious.  

Exploration 56 - Thought Experiments

There used to be a balcony across from my apartment that had furniture hanging upside down.  I have no idea why anyone would need to do this.  So, I will make up a reason.  My best guess is that these people are photographers and needed some new material.  Since the inside of our apartment complex is pretty cool looking they decided it would be a good setting.  The next thing they needed was a good subject... but they really wanted to make it stand out.  They figured that no one uses upside down chairs as their subject, so that is what they went with.  Once the pictures were finished, they brought it to a gallery and were told that it is not a new idea, many people have taken pictures of furniture hanging upside down.  They got very upset about this and quickly tore all their furniture down.  

Exploration 58 - Scavenger hunt

Something I'm looking forward to - the Josh concert this Thursday

Something meaningful - a birthday card from one of my best friends

Something meaningful - a book someone picked up for me because he thought I'd like it

Something I love - BSU football

Something I love - My Ray Bans

Exploration 59 - Wandering Aimlessly

I took a walk from my apartment on Sunday and ended up all the way at the beach.  I was listening to my headphones, so I was totally immersed.  Then all the sudden, I had walked all the way down to the beach.  It was pretty cool to get my mind off the stuff that I was stressing about and just take a break.  Plus, I love the beach.  

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