This post was written by Andy Kirk, founder and editor of visualisingdata.com. Andy will be guest editing Information Aesthetics for a short period while Andrew takes a well earned break.
Cinemetrics [cinemetrics.fredericbrodbeck.de] is a unique visual creation from graphic designer and creative coder Frederic Brodbeck. This work formed his graduate project, at the Royal Academy of Arts, Den Haag from where he recently graduated.
As Frederic describes, the idea behind Cinemetrics is about measuring and visualizing movie data in order to reveal a visual "fingerprint" of the film's characteristics, thus enabling it to be explored and compared with other films of similar genre, remakes and from the same director.
Information such as the movie's structure, the balance and prominence of colours, speech and motion are extracted, analyzed and transformed into pulsing, radial graphic representations. Users can interact with the work, revealing the associated scene 'stills' at any point in the movie. An accompanying video explains the concept in more detail.
The complexity of this project was not just reserved for the innovative generating of the final visual objects - the project also required complex, custom software to be developed to facilitate the mining and disassembling of the video data from the movies themselves.
A second video details the design process, explaining where the data comes from, what techniques were used to analyze and process the data and how a typical movie looks like when generated through cinemetrics.
Aside from its purpose as a graduate design project submission, the product of this work is a book that details the project in its entirety and a set of posters that can be purchased, commissioned and customised.
It is interesting to see snippets of examples where Frederic has expanded the remit of cinemetrics to be applied to 'other archetypes', using non-movie data such as sport and TV programmes, like The Simpsons.
You can see more of Frederic's portfolio of creative visual communications on his personal website.