Sunday, February 12, 2012

No Ad: New York

Many are familiar with Morgan Spurlock because of his hit documentary, Super Size Me. He's worked on a number of great projects since that film but one of my favorites happened to be very similar to something we covered in class the other day. When using After Effects to change billboards in New York City's Time Square, I immediately thought of No Ad: New York, Spurlock's project against visual pollution in NYC.

Spurlock, however, takes a different approach to removing ads than we did. Instead of using a program like After Effects, he crowd-sources his project with the help of Aviary, an online photo and graphic editing suite. For this project, a panoramic image of NYC has been divided into many frames that can be individually edited. Anyone who visits the site can select a frame and edit it using Aviary's Photoshop-like software. The goal is to have visitors cover up the ads in all the frames to remove Times Square of its visual pollution. 

It's disappointing to see this project still incomplete, especially since it was started over two years ago, but hopefully it can be completed soon. After learning how to cover up ads in After Effects using tracking, it seems like a very easy goal to accomplish. I feel the decision to crowd-source internet users to complete the project frame by frame was a bit of an ambitious idea.

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