Written by on February 18, 2014

Reflection: Documenting the process

This was a really fun project to capture on video.

I first met Clare in the Summer of 2012 to begin capturing her thoughts and processes as she started the “Reflection” art installation project for Kennedy Library. Her enthusiasm and passion were apparent from the moment we sat down and she began to talk about her ideas. Her office was full of sketches and prototypes and bits and pieces of various materials she was exploring. She talked about light and reflective properties. She thought out loud about how the piece would change throughout the day as the sun would come through the windows at different angles and then reflect onto the surrounding environment. She was excited to discover how the process of prototyping would inform her final piece.

I was hooked.

Capturing the creative process

Over the course of the next year, I met with Clare several times at various stages of her process. Sometimes, at a moment’s notice, I’d grab the camera and run to find her somewhere on campus working on some portion of the project. Her enthusiasm for my process of documenting her process was obvious in her messages to me:

“I’m in the dFab lab and have been laser cutting, and it occurred to me that the filming could happen any time. Would you like me to do some explaining while the machine is on the move?”

Clare’s “Reflection” art installation was over a year in the making and filming. She let me see and capture her early thoughts on form and materials and fabrication. I got to see the experiments and the frustrations that make up the artistic process. I also witnessed the joy and satisfaction of bringing an idea into the light of day.

Library as content creator

One of the things that I enjoy most about producing video content for the library is the opportunity to observe, and sometimes be immersed in, other people’s creative process. But beyond my personal enjoyment of the work I do here is the increasing role that Kennedy Library is playing as a content creator. We are not only organizing and managing outstanding events and exhibits, but we are also documenting them and producing videos and podcasts to share with the world. We have become content creators in our own right!

Reflection video

This video is my attempt to condense a 15-month creative process into 3 minutes. I love the name Clare chose for this art installation. The double meaning of “Reflection” works well for a video that reviews and ponders a creative process. But it also made the music selection a challenge. Eventually, I was pleased to have discovered “Proliferate” by Podington Bear, with its reflective sonic feel.

This was an inspiring creative process for me and I look forward to collaborating in the future with other artists.

Read more on clare olsen, digital media specialist, exhibits, kennedy library, and reflection.

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