Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


Exploring a world of colour

23 May 2014

Exploring a world of colour

We live in a world of colour that is generally taken for granted, even though manufactured colour is relatively new, a Victoria University of Wellington academic says.

Professor Kirsten Thompson, Director of Victoria’s Film Programme, will deliver her inaugural professorial lecture next Tuesday, focusing on the night-time spectacleDisney’s World of Color, as well as considering the links it has with new media like Google Glass.

Professor Thompson’s current research is the first to consider animation's crucial role in a broader visual history of colour in American culture.

“Synthetically manufactured colour has transformed our environment,” she says. “Prior to the late 19th century, colour was derived from plant, shellfish or other materials and was sometimes expensive or time consuming to produce. With the ability to manufacture colour in the lab we suddenly had the ability to put colour everywhere, and to do it cheaply.”

Disney was the first company to adopt a leading colour process in film, says Professor Thompson. Its production of cartoons in colour in the 1930s using Technicolor three-strip, a new kind of colour process at that time, encouraged Hollywood studios to follow suit with colour films of their own.

“Early use of colour was associated with fantasy and the supernatural rather than reality—films like The Wizard of Oz. Today black and white is more often associated with art films or the historical past than with reality.”

With digital technology, she says, there’s an ability to paint the image which links back to the earliest days of cinema when films were hand painted in colour by teams of women. Yet digital colour is a faster, more precise tool today.

New media is also adapting the layering principles of animation, says Professor Thompson. This includes Google Glass—due out in United States stores at the end of this year—a wearable computer with an optical head-mounted display that can be activated using voice commands or gestures.

Traditional celluloid (cel) animation was about laying clear cels on top of each other to create the illusion of depth, says Professor Thompson, and digital animation uses the same principles of layering data in the computer.

“That relationship between the transparent and the opaque is an essential structural part of Google Glass as well, where you’re able to see the world, but with a translucent overlay of data on top, transforming your everyday reality into a magical bubble-like world. So this old art form isn’t going away any time soon.”

What: The ephemeral immersive screen: Disney’s World of Color
When: 6pm, Tuesday 27 May
Where: Hunter Council Chamber, Level 2, Hunter Building, Gate 2, Kelburn Parade

To RSVP phone 04-463 6700 or email with “Thompson” in the subject line.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Scoop Review Of Books: Worldly And Unworldly

"Being Magdalene" by Fleur Beale The situations shown in this youth novel are shocking, scary, and very moving as we experience Magdalene’s struggle to be a perfect girl as defined by the cruel and unreasonable leader of “The Children of the Faith”, as she moves reluctantly into young womanhood. More>>

Whistle Stop: Netball NZ To Implement New INF Rules

Netball New Zealand (NNZ) will implement the new Official Rules of Netball, as set down by the International Netball Federation (INF), from January 1, 2016. Key changes include the elimination of whistle following a goal, amendments to injury time and changes to setting a penalty. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Waiata Aroha

Vaughan Rapatahana on Chappy by Patricia Grace: With this eminently readable novel Patricia Grace returns to the full-length fiction stage after a hiatus of ten years. More>>

'Ithaca' At Q Theatre: Introducing NZ's World Class Cirque Troupe

NZ’s very own cirque troupe is set to become a household name with the premier of its adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey having secured a key season in Auckland. More>>

Music Awards: The Tuis Are Broody This Year

Topping off a sensationally eventful year both at home and internationally, Nelson born brother-sister duo Broods has taken home four Tuis from this year’s 50th annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. More>>


Sport: Richie McCaw Retires From Rugby

Richie McCaw has today confirmed he is hanging up his boots and retiring from professional rugby. The 34-year-old All Blacks captain and most capped All Black of all time has drawn the curtain on his stunning international career which started in Dublin 14 years ago, almost to the day, and ended in London last month when he hoisted the Webb Ellis Cup aloft for the second time. More>>


John McBeth: On Jonah Lomu

For many New Zealanders, the enormity of Jonah Lomu's reputation will have come as a surprise... His deeds were watched and enthused over by movie stars and musicians, politicians and superstars from other codes. He reached into the lives and homes of millions and mixed with famous people most New Zealanders would only have read about. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news