Category Archives: Wall Clouding

Norm Black: Before

Norm Black is the name of my exhibition at Mettlework Art Space, from September 3-6, 2015. I will be showing a VR short film created with Hiverlab, a virtual gallery created with Eugene Soh and involving 40 artists and writers, a conceptual piece with kuehs and black and white prints of Tiong Bahru. I will do a reading. 3how will play, at least once. Finally, there will be appropriated photographs of the bottoms and sides of anchored ships

Please note: Norm Black is also my dad's name. He sells books. I always thought his name would be a great name for a book, band or exhibition.


OK, first an explanation of what 's going on. Norm Black is being put together very quickly as I soon hope to return to an almost hermit-like existence while I complete a novel called Bali Wave Ghost. I have been planning to start writing on September 10.

Less than two weeks ago, Beach Road went online. It soon became apparent that many small screenings would need to be arranged, as opposed to renting a theatre or art space. A VR movie is meant to be viewed with a viewer, also called a HMD. Which means many HMDs have to be bought OR many Android phones have to be found so that they can fit into the Cardboard viewers which Hiverlab has.

Moving the story along, I put out a call, looking for spaces. Boom! Dennis Tan,  who is very familiar with Mettlework and Bruce Quek from Mettlework both responded. So that's how it started.

The work to be shown/what's happening:

Beach Road VR movie (5 minutes) SPOKEN Virtual Gallery 3how Sept. 3, maybe another night or two. 3how on FB

Depth images

Taste, Trial and Error (kueh: edible sculptures/conceptual art)thumb kways

Dissolving Tiong Bahru (experimental black and white prints)

Words were the first VR: a reading by Stephen Black Sunday, 7pm -9pm

Plus a surprise or two...

Exhibition Hours:

Thursday, September 3  7pm-11pm

Friday 10 am- 3pm

Saturday 10am-11pm

Sunday 10am-11pm

Location: 50 Lorong 17. Closest station: Aljunied


Stephen Black: bookmerah %at & gmail

Towards a New Cinematography (notes)

blue fish in tank with Wall Clouding written aboveit

image created as part of the preparation for the Wall Clouding 360 video by Stephen Black/hiverlab

Towards a New Cinematography is the latest title for the book that I committed myself to with this post.

Singapore has recently been very helpful to me. For example, because of an amazing series of talks organized by SCAPE, I was able to get up to speed on 4K, thanks to three great presentations by Matt Seigel. Twice I was able to hear Karl Soule go over some of the numerous delights in the Adobe Creative Cloud.

I heard Kazz Sato speak about sound! I was in the same room as Royston Tan!Nicholas Chee!

These talks really brought me up to speed, helping me get a sense of the current state of indie film production. Very important, especially after my years away from video, when I was in "exile" in Bali.

And more: last week I attended a three-in-one Meetup:

Singapore Creative Coding Meetup

Singapore StoryCode Meetup


The presenters were:

Himanshu Shah, speaking about a Virtual Roller Coaster.

Himanshu Shah has been in the production industry for the last 15 years and is involved in a number of companies. Amongst the companies he is currently involved in is one that does stereoscopic 3D video production. His latest company is involved in the creation of VR Rides.

Hrishi Olickel, speaking about a low-cost alternative to the Oculus Drift

Went to ACS(Independent), graduated in 2012 for IB in the top 1% Currently majoring in Computer Science at Yale-NUS College focusing on Machine Learning and Big Data Founder of the Yale-NUS Hackerspace, hackathon enthusiast

AND... Eugene Soh!Eugene spoke about unconventional uses of VR, including a very special project... Eugene Soh is a Singaporean fine artist who happens to be a programming genius. When he isn't travelling the world, he is at home making apps or creating epic photographic renditions of famous renaissance paintings. Eugene has recently taken a strong interest in harvesting energy from the sun (solar power, because he hates paying bills) and may be moving in that direction.

All of these experiences really increased my knowledge about all of the changes taking place in cinematography. However, having information is not the same as having experience... which is why I am very excited to be involved with a couple of projects with hiverlab... but I will elaborate on these developments in another post...

Unlocking With Ears: Faculty Party + Steve Pagnotta

Unlocking With Ears: Personal Explosion

Free music from Margaret Explosion Don't Wake Me video by Stephen Black   Assembly Line by Margaret Explosion, video by Stephen Black   MOIM Logo

Wall Clouding preproduction notes

Note: Wall Clouding was a working title; BEACH ROAD is the name of the finished project. Info about Beach Road is here.

What: Wall Clouding is a spontaneous act of filmmaking using the Aliwal Street area as inspiration. The Wall Clouding activities take place as part of Unlocking With Ears, Stephen Black's exhibit at the Museum of Independent Music Singapore.

Wall Clouding aims to be noteworthy on several levels, one being technical. Thanks to the support of Hiverlab, one video will be shot in 360 video. At the moment, drones are being researched, as well as 4K cameras. Through careful preproduction, it is possible to create with all of these formats.

Also, thanks to the support of the Museum of Independent Music, Wall Clouding will have access to professional recording facilities for musicians and voice talents.

The final film will likely be a short film of approximately 10 minutes long. However, there are exciting and unpredictable possibilities that will be explored. The goal is, however, to have finished work in hand at the close of Unlocking With Ears.

Who: Wall Clouding is being produced by artist/writer Stephen Black. He has documented the dance performances of Kazuo Ono, produced stories for Fuji TV, France 2, CNN, Cartoon Network and Fox and has collaborated with Kumiko Akiyoshi. Orchid Orchitect was a text collaboration with Michael Lee for the 2011 Singapore Biennale and 3how: the Riverwalk Session was a musical co-production with Amith Narayan featuring a variety of noteworthy musicians. Black is the author of several books, including the bestselling I Ate Tiong Bahru.

When: June 23- July 5, 2015 At the time of this writing , the exact days of shooting are not yet fixed. For the most up to date information, please check elsewhere on this blog or on the Wall Clouding Facebook page.

Support: Hiverlab, Museum of Independent Music and others soon to be confirmed.

If you are an actor, performance artist, musician, vocalist, designer or just interested in this project, please get in touch as soon as possible. A full pre-production schedule will soon appear in a separate blog post.


Wall Clouding

Howdy SXSW'ers! I would be most happy, and honored, to chat with you about anything you like. Sayuri Okayama, my partner, and I will be in Austin for a day or two after SXSW. Poke around this blog if you want to know about my various projects: books, music, AR, VR, games and more. This post is full of examples I used for my presentations at Hong Kong Polytechnic. This VR short film was featured at festivals in Singapore, Brisbane and Las Vegas. 360 films  Another VR film, needs only postproduction and audio mixing. It is called Lotus Mountain, and was shot with GoPros and an 8K Obsidian sponsored by Kandao. An original soundtrack by Rei Shimizu, plus a song from the Riverwalk Session album by 3how. Bubiko and the Unicorn, one of my latest public presentations as part of the ARphabet Tour.  The presentation took place at ARIA (Augmented Reality in Action) at MIT in January. An article about Houqianbei, the heart of China's Silicon Valley. Bubiko Foodtour is involved with some very interesting AR, VR and book projects. Look for Bubiko on Instagram, Facebook, twitter @bubikofoodtour and soon...  in an AR game of her own!  Bubiko also guest starred in an AR game demo by Dominique Wu (Hummingbirdsday Studio) and Michael Stragey (Spongebob Squarepants, Avenged Sevenfold, Barbie). 3how  music  yes Bubiko Foodtour Obama Search Words by Stephen Black Cover of Stephen Black's book of historical fiction about the life of Barack Obama. Now, during SXSW, my books are discounted on Amazon... other books include Bali Wave Ghost, and i ate tiong bahru. So there ya go! onwARd, Stephen Black ........ Wall Clouding: a collaboration. Unplanned yet professional, like  this. And this.