I've been going back through my list and trying to check off some old ideas I've been holding on to. One idea was "make something monotonous, interesting." Every time I saw this one on the list, I could have sworn that monotonous thing would never float to the surface. But as I was searching for some public domain imagery and footage to use for another film, I ventured off into the world of film and TV pre-rolls. Slates, leaders, countdowns, etc. Then there they were. Color bars. Duh!
To spare you some boredom, I'll make this explanation brief. Color bars are used so a TV station can calibrate it's equipment to the color intensities and audio levels of a broadcast tape. It's usually 30 seconds of the static bars with a steady monotonous tone of 1000 Hz. Aaaaand that's it. It doesn't pretend to be anything else.
I have seen other art that uses color bars but it's typically as part of a collage. And usually inside of a TV screen. Like these:
Or they can be made into birthday gifts for hipsters:
The fun part for me was making the melodies in the audio using only the steady tone. I cut the tone into pieces, either one or two frames long, and changed the pitch on each one to emulate different "notes". Then cut the notes together in random patterns and it sounded a little like video game music from 1983:
Here's a short bit of the edited audio without any reverb on it:
'Twas a fun experiment! And a relatively easy piece to get done while I'm in full sprint. This one took about 8 hours to complete from top to bottom. Would be nice to have some time to walk away and tweak and whatnot but--it's done. And now it's gone. On to the next!
Thanks for reading!