Like water for the desert, New Media for New Mexico


Great Race Videos!

Please take the time to vote for your favorite!

These videos were shot by the kind folks at ITV.

















Go Mustangs!

Student Work Fall 2012

A sampling from 4D and Studio I. Yay idEA students!!







The Adversary Music Video Shoot photos

These are a few of my favorites photos that were taken over the two days that I helped out with the shoot.

Stop Motion Magic


Motivation for the 4D students!

Twoey Interviews Malaria

with Nick Carter and Dr.  Jost


Steps In Front Of McCray, Please

Art for Fun

I just spent a solid week in Los Angeles looking at art, from the Stone Age to stuff made this year.  One piece of art at the LACMA made a very strong impression on me, I spent several minutes looking at it from every angle, absorbing it, interacting with it, photographing it, and revisited it 2 more times while at the museum. The second I saw it, I said “ooohhh” and made a beeline for it.  The piece was an outdoor installation of dangling yellow tubes that you could walk through like a rack of hanging spaghetti. The area was full of kids, running, swinging, and hiding in the tubes like little fish in a sea anemone. As near I can tell, this piece had no message other than to be fun.  As I looked at art over the weekend, and thought about what my own art direction will be, I can say with certainty that I want to make art that is fun.

Penetrabile by Jesus Rafeael Soto

Solar Eclipse

Though we were a few hundred miles too far south the get the full 100 percent annular eclipse, with a Polarized lens filter and my Canon camera, I was able to capture these photos of the eclipse at 86% over Bill Evans Lake.

High Line and Chelsea

In addition to the art museums and art fairs, while in New York we also took the time to visit some art galleries in the Chelsea District, which is supposedly the trendy art neighborhood.  The taxi dropped us off at the foot of the High Line, a city park created on the remains of  the old above ground subway system.  Chelsea used to be a meatpacking district, and some of the old structures were preserved in the park, making for an interesting vibe and unique visuals. We walked up the length of the park, enjoying soaking up the sunshine and arguing about what to eat for lunch.  Then we enjoyed good cheap food at a little Indian spot and grabbed dessert from a little French Patisserie.  In the afternoon we popped in and out of galleries, all impressive cavernous spaces painted a pristine white with really big soundless doors, usually devoted to one artist. The staff all wore sleek dark business suits, and very ostentatiously polite yet dismissive– I assume since we were clearly not buyers.  Here is a slideshow of the High Line Park and of some the art found in these fancy spaces:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

On being a NYC Exhibitionist

iDEA Exhibit in NY: Logistics & Lessons Learned

Putting on an exhibit of WNMU student work in New York City was just fabulous, and our experience was undoubtedly a total success.  We were two students (Anna Davis and moi) and a faculty adviser (Peter Bill) in New York for a week, during Spring Break 2012. The exhibit was the heart of the trip, though we also had a serious agenda of attending museums and galleries.

I’d been to Manhattan before, and to some of its museums, but having my own work shown during our stay there changed the tenor of our visit. We weren’t just observing and taking notes as diligent art students. We were participating in the very pulse of the art scene, adding our own lifeblood, changing the color and sounds of the city for anyone who saw our work.  And when I walked in to galleries, festivals, and museums as the trip progressed, I held my head a bit higher, and I felt like I could meet this city and any artist in it eye to eye. That was an amazing feeling.

Our preparation for the trip was crucial, and everything we did paid off. Midterms very not conveniently were right before our trip, and as we neared our final day of class, I was practically living in the lab and felt like I was close to losing my grip. So, Lesson 1: set deadlines, in stone, far away from exams. Still, we were pretty organized. I had set up a spreadsheet on Google Docs, and we had a schedule for each day of the trip, including setup and breakdown of the exhibit. We tested all our equipment beforehand. The rear-projection screen (Anna’s wax paper innovation) worked. The DVD player worked. The projector worked. The RCA cables worked. Our DVD looped properly. Remotes and extension cords were packed. We were ready.

However, as much as we tested everything beforehand, there were still aspects of the exhibit left, somewhat, to chance. We could only bring what we could fit in a large suitcase ($25 charge, thank you very much US Airways), and there were items that we would need to get on location. This worried me. I lost sleep thinking about what could go wrong. What if our bag was held up at the airport? What if we couldn’t hang our 9’ x 7’ screen from the ceiling or walls of the gallery? And on and on. We had pored over specs at length of our space, but… it was hard to believe it would all work out.

As it turned out, everything was fine. We arrived early to the Phoenix airport, giving security plenty of time to ponder our plethora of electronics. Once in New York, we bought a dowel for the screen at a hardware store near the exhibit space, and with a little duct tape, wire, and troubleshooting the sound system, we were set up in about two hours. When I stood outside our finished window display, watching the passersby slow down and taking in our student work, I felt like I had a burst of energy that went right to my ambition and my pride. Which, as an artist, can be a hard feeling to come by.

We pulled off the first WNMU exhibit in New York, and that is no small thing. Anna and I sat talking in the dark gallery space after we broke it down, and we both realized, we could do this again. We could do it in New York or anywhere, we could do solo exhibits, we could do group exhibits, installations, interactive media. What can I say? We did it, we did it, we did it! Of all the experiences I have had as an art student, this really has had the most impact on what I know I can accomplish.

Elizabeth (BJ) Allen

My Proposal to the Mural Painting Class

Some crazy play with perspective in the pit behind the FACT…in the spirit of these pieces…

Nostophobia @ McCray Gallery

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Daughters, sixteen, travel, river…to the river, boy, tails…fish-mermen!, whispers, make love, return, twelve days – no! – months, giving birth, babies, lullaby, anxious, sons, the first…

Full moon, travel to the river, sons, flow, cry, fathers, cry, and cry, and whispering, weeping, next-full moon, weeping, sons mothers, washing the hair, smell, mother, weeping, next full moon, repeat…

animated giffiness

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Are the iDEA students sane..or insane??? *evil chuckle*

A collaboration between the iDEA 4D class and the Sociology department led to the creation of one of the more involved shoots of the semester.  The craziness began when Prof. Peter Bill was approached by Noel Shearer, a psychology student at WNMU, about making a film for one of her class projects based on David Rosenham’s article “On Being Sane in Insane Places”, detailing a study in which sane people managed to get admitted to mental institutions and then details the problems they had  getting discharged.  Can sane people really be that different from insane people?  The concept intrigued Robert Torres and Anna Davis, and a script was written and the students in the 4D class cast as various characters.  Permission was obtained to film in the abandoned Ft. Bayard Hospital, a creepy locale if there ever was one.  The entire class had a fun time getting into character-maybe a little too much fun? As a class we learned about the details involved in a larger shoot, as well as some of the issues that arise as more people get involved in a project.  This project was also a great collaboration between different departments at WNMU and the Silver City community. This film also illustrated the fact that digital media can have a broad application for many fields.. such as making a dry intellectual paper into a fun film! And Sociology class presentations do not have to be boring. Noel got an A, and hopefully our iDEA students are no more crazy then usual…

playing for change

Playing For Change Day, 2011 is going to be an amazing day of music and community:

200 events on 6 continents to choose from

Nearly 6000 registered to attend

Over $30,000 raised (before the first note has been played!)

The organizer at WNMU, Maria Dominguez, has graciously offered to donate $100 toward playing for change.

We will be filming, and recording high quality audio.

Silver City, NM – Western New Mexico University is hosting El Futuro Del Mariachi, a
concert celebrating the youth in mariachi on Saturday, September 17, 2011.
Two concerts are scheduled for 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. at the Fine Arts Center Theatre.
Groups scheduled to perform are Corazon del Desierto and Mariachi Alma de Jalisco.
Individual performers include Oscar Pena and Angelica Padilla.
General admission is $10 per ticket. Tickets can be purchased at the Office of
Multicultural Affairs and Student Activities (MASA) located in the Student Memorial
Center, Little Nisha’s Restaurant, Smoke Shoppe, Beverage Company and both Food
Basket locations.
The event is sponsored by the MASA Office, United Campus Ministry and several
community businesses and organizations.

WNMU IDEA will match the donation and supports music as part of it’s mission in Interdiscipinary Arts education.

will social media save us?

in a rapidly evolving culture, where families/regions/nation states seem to be disintegrating before our eyes, can social media become the glue that holds us together?

or is it the enzyme that finally brings a true global revolution?

chocolat fantasia in the SC

jaime continues his citizen journalism…

Citizen journalism at work for you

iDEAlab veteran and awesome storyteller Jaime Ramirez was on the story yesterday –

covering the silver city “gas shortage”….

What a great iDEA (lab)

Hidden within the Parotti Building (actually, right inside the front door) exists a room where volcanos erupt and alien monsters duke it out to the death.  Toddlers fly over the grand canyon in cardboard boxes and students learn light-saber techniques from the master. Imagination becomes reality in the iDEA Lab, arguably the most happening place at WNMU.

When I mention the Idea Lab, the usual response is-“that sounds like an awesome place…what is it?”.   Officially, iDEA is an acronym for Inter-Disciplinary Expressive Arts.  However, it is also a word. The definition of idea on my mac app dictionary is “the thought that something is probable or possible”  and the def. of laboratory is “is a room equipped for experiments, research, and teaching”.

So take an iDEA class and make your ideas reality: do you want to make a music video?  a short documentary film? a New Media installation?   The iDEA lab has the tools you need: have state of the art computers and software, fun gadgets, digital cameras, a green screen, fancy lighting and tripods, projectors, a white board, and even a chalkboard :-P.   Software available includes Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, AfterEffects, and Flash, Final Cut Pro, Cinema 4D, Dragon Stop Motion, and Soundtrack Pro.Whether you work with image, video, or sound-you can create it and edit it and publish it all in one locale. When you’ve made a project, who knows?  You might be featured on this very blog

Classes currently taught in the iDEA Lab are 3d animation and experimental (stop motion) animation.

The iDEA lab was created to meet the needs of the  new Interdisciplinary Expressive Art program, part of the Expressive Art department.  In this program, students blend the traditional arts of visual arts, music, and theatre with the new arts of graphic design and digital media.  Students are encouraged to work with New Media and Mixed Media to create professional and original work, and to push the boundaries of what is possible. For more questions about the iDEA program, contact Prof. Peter Bill or Ann Marie Elder

filming DOWNTOWN tomorrow!

Help Silver City win the Great American Main Street Award and become a YouTube celebrity!

As part of our finalist’s application for this prestigious national award, Silver City MainStreet will be filming a group sing of the final line of the 1964 Petula Clark song Downtown. The idea is to have hundreds of people gathered on Broadway under the Downtown Gateway Arch representing our entire community.

Since Western is such an important part of Silver City, we’d like to extend a special invitation to the WNMU community to join us for this memorable event. Come dressed as you are, or wear your purple and gold to represent your school to the rest of the world!

Filming will take place on Broadway between Bullard and Hudson Streets this Tuesday, Feb. 1 from 8:30 to 9 am. Please join us, and bring your friends! For more information, visit , or call (575) 534-1700.

First light on green screen studio animation using dragon stop motion

first light!
very first sketch using dragon stop motion, canon 7D, tokina 11-16mm.
conceived by two of my best students, anna animation and zach on gaff.
hit full screen to see it in all its glory!!!