Digital Media: Models

Exercise 02.2 - Physical/Digital Models

The iterative cycling back and forth between the physical and digital is a primary focus of our course this year. The model (whether a digital entity, physical artifact or something in-between) is a means of translating between these two realms. Exercise 2.1 explored the manipulation of the formal and material properties of physical objects in the digital realm, using the affordances of the digital model to generate novel outcomes. Ex. 2.2 builds on the conceptual approach developed in Ex.2.1 via two additional modeling techniques - the simulation and the physical model. Within this context, Ex 2.2 will examine the physical reality of materials in tandem with the capacities of digital technologies to assign new or alternative readings to our experience of them. The assignment will involve the creation of a set of physical and digital artifacts that attempt to model the process, behavior or appearance described in the alternative format (ie. physical to digital, and vice versa). Models may attempt to faithfully reproduce and depict the process or render a vague resemblance without dutifully portraying either.


Working in the same groups from Ex. 2.1, and using the techniques presented in class workshops as a starting point, apply the conceptual framework developed in Ex. 2.1 to develop a collection of 5 models. The models should read as a sequence of related operations, and can take the form of either a physical model or digital simulation. Document each modeling process in the form of an animation (gif, video, simulation, etc.): In translating between each model, identify a manipulation strategy from the terms listed below (terms may be used more than once). The modeling process should transition between physical operation and digital operation at least twice during the modeling process (physical materialization / digitization)

Imaging (ie. manipulation of raw photos prior to creating a 3D scan, presentation of 3D information in a 2D image format)


Choose a portion of the model developed in Ex. 2.1 to develop the first model in the sequence. The scope and scale of the specific area of focus is up to you.
Digital Models: Animation simulating the manipulation process ( ~ 10 seconds in duration). Explore material and model behaviors, leveraging the simulation methods we’ve explored in class.
Physical Models: In addition to the final physical artifact, include a video recording of the modeling process in your submission ( ~ 10 seconds in duration). Focus on techniques that model visual or performative qualities of the associated digital techniques, be mindful of material selection. The model should be fabricated from at least 2 separate materials. Consider these models as initial experiments in physical materialization. Emphasize process and technique over precision.