Week 10: Activity – Student Choice

The world of art spans a vast, seemingly endless array of different and related mediums. Though art is often limited in the minds of most people to painting or drawing, these certainly are not the only mediums that exist. In fact, especially now in the 21st century, there is an abundance of various artistic styles available, from photography to sculpture, from architecture to music. Art is everywhere in our daily lives and has been ever since since the dawn of man, fulfilling our human need to express ourselves. Personally, I take a great interest in art and its many manifestations because I am fascinated by the many ways people express themselves. However of these many forms, I take particular interest in film, photography, and music. This is why I have chosen to combine these elements for my activity for Week 10.

Being interested in music, I have been playing the guitar for over 4 years and have participated in several musical projects and endeavors with my musician friends, one of whom is my neighbor named Jack Mills. Together we have played in the same band, and still continue to make music together under the name Zen Diagram. Under this moniker, we currently have three songs, the newest of which is titled “Insides” and was written and recorded this past week. Given my interest in music, I found it appropriate to exhibit this particular song for my Week 10 activity. On this track, I played the guitar, bass and melodica while Jack was in charge of singing and backing vocals. Lyrics were a dual effort by both of us. The song itself was written and recorded over a period of 4 days in Jack’s father’s personal recording studio in his home.

Insides – Zen Diagram    https://soundcloud.com/jackmillzz/insides-zen-diagram

Zen Diagram Setlist    https://soundcloud.com/jackmillzz


I have also gained an interest in film and, more recently, photography. This was particularly due to me finding a Polaroid camera at a Goodwill for $10 and also me receiving an HD Nikon Coolpix L830 camera for Christmas. But for this project I wanted to focus on using the Polaroid for the vintage, aged feel it gives to its photos. Given that we needed a cover photo for “Insides” as well as for the other two songs, we decided to go around the area to take photos with the Polaroid. Out of it, we got two photos that we thought were appropriate for the songs and for the last picture, we used one of the many photos I had taken already, this particular one being one of my street. In addition, I began filming a music video with for one of our other songs , titled “Fences”, with Jack this break although I was not able to get all the footage that was needed for it.

Because Jack goes to school at the University of Washington, we do not have as many chances to write and record as we did before. Therefore we can only make music when he is back home for vacations, this past week being his Spring break. I was happy that this coincided well with the assignment of the Week 10 Activity, because for me, music is an area that I take a particular interest in and one that I am consistently inspired and moved by. My creativity is also bolstered by music and it allows me to incorporate and combine with it my other artistic interests, like film and photography. Given these circumstances, I found it very fitting to write a song for my activity. Also, being a Pre-Film major, I also found it appropriate to film a music video for one of our songs, though it remains unfinished, and to take pictures out of of both interest and a desire to practice my camera angling. However, although the focus of the activity is the song, it has also led to the progression of our musical endeavors as a whole as well. Overall I found the outcome of the activity to be satisfactory and rewarding, and the process of creating it to be very enjoyable.


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