Intensities and Null Values

MJ - Bullet Time - Courtesy MJ to the MaxThe green or blue screen used in chroma key photography — once simply the flat planar backdrop for the local TV weatherman, but increasingly entire 3-D environments — would seem to provide an ideal instance of smooth space. In fact, it should be considered a prototype for striation.

Smooth spaces, according to Deleuze and Guattari, are characterized by intensities; these are variable and affective and may function in the service of navigation for the nomad. With the chroma key screen there are no intensities, but rather a void of solid blue or green. In addition, lights are strategically placed to completely eliminate shadows or hot spots (glare) that may interfere with the null of the solid blue/green and provide a bearing of intensity.

When the chroma key photography set becomes a volumetric environment, it still does not function as an intensity, but rather as a nothing in which bodies and objects become solely referential to one another or to the camera. How does one move through green space? Where is the line? What intensities provide guidance?

No, this is a striated space, or perhaps better a proto-striated space. It only makes sense in the context of the computer that overlays a grid on top of the entire greenspace. The body is plotted in three dimensions, and more importantly, is transposed to some fantasy space, a virtual space. The greenscreen, then, as a nexus between the real and virtual. At that nexus, any smoothing of space and time (eg. bullet time) may be possible, but it is fundamentally predicated upon the striation of this proto-striated space.


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