on Black Flags and bar codes

Today’s Daily Create asked us to “Compose a cutup poem from the words that debuted in your birth year.” This was inspired by a tweet from Amy Burvall which I liked so much that I made it a ds106 assignment, which I eventually need to do. But the first thing that caught my eye when I looked at the list for 1963 was the juxtaposition of black flag and bar code. Black Flag was an 80s hardcore band. I never listened to them back then, but I was aware of them from their distinctive album covers and logo. The four black bars of the logo are distantly analogous to the black stripes of a barcode, a kind of visual rhyme, so putting the two together was rather obvious.

The process was fairly straightforward. An image search found the logo and a barcode, and I brought them both into Photoshop. I used the Image=>Canvas Size function to make the logo image a wide rectangle, then I pasted the barcode in as a new layer. The barcode was way too big so I used Edit=>Transform=>Scale to make it fit. I had it right next to the logo, then thought it would be better to have it overlap a little. I cropped out the Black Flag text and the numbers under the code.

The challenge in the Daily Create was to make a poem. Using it as an inspiration to make a visual is not wrong per se, but it is a bit of a cop-out because for me, working with images is far less challenging than working with words. But I have plans to do more with the list so it’s OK by me. I could have experimented with putting the images together differently, like in the GIF to the right, but I view the Daily Create as more of a quickie and less of a tinkering project. But the more I think about the first image, the more I like it. The logo was supposed to represent anarchy, and Black Flag is supposed to be the opposite of the white flag of surrender. I also see a vitality in the up-and-down rhythm of the black bars of the logo, which flatlines into the bar code. You could read something about the impact of commercialism on art in the image. Maybe it’s more poetic than I thought.

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One Response to on Black Flags and bar codes

  1. Pingback: “We’ve got fun and games…” | raptnrent.me

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