Monika May

Describe your field. Why are you interested in Computer Art/ Computer Graphics and what (event, need, idea, hope, obstacle) caused your involvement? Summarize your line of development (the essence of your input to the field) in relation to concurrent technology.

Interested in CG because it allows me to manifest my visions beautifully. Filled with unlimited potential, it is continually growing and changing. I love learning new ways of creating and enjoy evolving the noosphere with technology. It is an amazing time to be a creative; we have endless forms of expression at our disposal. We have a palette of billions of colors and endless mediums to play with. My involvement in CG came out of a "frustration" with the limitations of traditional artistic media. While I love the tactile nature of paint, the versatility of 3D art fascinates me.

Does the computer allow you to think visually about some topic or process in new ways? How has this influenced your work? Describe your ultimate accomplishment.

The computer allows me to previsualize ideas, visions, and concepts more effectively than sketches. Thought process has changed; it is more dynamic interacting with the computer. Learn from it; problem solve differently. Easier to maintain a "free form associative" way of creating. Advantageous when writing, researching, or brainstorming. Now there are many more versions of a work, before I consider it complete (benefits of large hard drives). Able to play with more options; is this easier? Hmm... Sometimes there are too many choices and information. My ultimate accomplishment is still forthcoming, but did get a piece displayed in the Louvre.

Has the field of computer art and graphics progressed in the ways that you expected? What has surprised you? What do you like about its progress and what do you wish had happened differently? What do you think the future holds for visual computing in science/art? Please make some predictions or wish lists for the near- and long-term future.

The future of Computer Graphics is a glorious place. CG is a significant driver in the evolution of humanity. Primarily visual creatures the power of images have a profound impact on human awareness. We are now able to rapidly manifest alternative visions for our collective consciousness. New types of images will help evolve people to new levels of being. For example, children who grow up gaming, see the world in new ways. They think differently; see more options in their choices. I hope that CG will educate and inspire future generations to see what a magnificent world we all share.

Describe your dream environment for enhancing your project ideas. What are your preferred tools for creating and how do they work? What tools (hardware/software) you have used initially had the strongest impact on your work?

Dream environment involves creating in new ways that are more harmonious with my spirit, mind and body. It will be great when computers become easier to work with (i.e. less impact on the body °V ergonomics). CG requires numerous hours interacting with the machine. It would be wonderful to interface with the system in a more organic, healthy way. Would love to have the tactile/sensory experience of wet paint while working with the computer. Strongest impact initially was PhotoShop 2; it had an airbrush so I no longer had to deal with a clogged nozzle.

Describe how you think specific advancements in technology, (such as wireframe, hidden line removal, scanner, laser, HTML, Java applets, or any other advancement), determined the way the approaches to creating art/graphics evolved?

The advent of 3D graphic applications, are revolutionizing the way that artists create. As these tools get easier to use and more cost effective, we will see a new type of art emerge. The fact that "2D" artists can now build visions in various spatial fields is changing the way they express themselves. No longer limited to a canvas, or a single surface there are endless possibilities for expression. Numerous variables interact to create surprising innovative visions. It is fascinating to explore shape, light, shadow and perspective with these revolutionary tools in multiple dimensions of space and time.

How would you characterize the milestones (every ten years) in the development of computer technology? Which ones were most influential in art/graphics?

Milestones: More than one level of undo in PhotoShop. The advent of affordable output (allows more creatives access to): digital video, multimedia, canvas, watercolor, photo paper, and better archival quality. 3D applications; ability to render realistic looking objects, merging "real" and CG. The impact of virtual environments cannot be underestimated; wherein the mind has difficulty distinguishing "virtual" and "real". This will change the way humans perceive their world. The increasing speed of computers and the Internet allows for more complex visions to be created and shared. The Internet encourages "democratization" of our collective consciousness and shared creativity.

Which persons would you indicate as the pioneers in the particular areas/stages in which decade?

. George Lucas' visions pushed the entire field into unknown frontiers and radiant visual future. His need to have his ideas realized resulted in the founding of numerous technologies, corporations, tools, and work flow methods. His dedication to expression on new levels forged our cutting edge.

2. PhotoShop founders Thomas and John Knoll gave creatives the opportunity to express themselves artistically in new ways using the computer. They help drive the field. Now, the integration of Adobe products with other applications is further allowing artists to explore new realms of creativity.