Why so serious? Joker Scene from the Dark Knight

The above scene is from the move Batman: The Dark Knight directed by Christopher Nolan. It is one of the most famous scenes done by Heath Ledger (as the Joker). It is most well known because of the acting by Heath Ledger, and is one of the main reasons that makes this a good scene, in addition to camera movement, lighting and other elements of film.

The acting is regarded to be of a very high level, mostly because of the fact that Heath Ledger was so submerged in his role that he did a brilliant job of acting as the Joker. Ledger’s facial expressions, his monologue, and the way he changes the tones of his voice are proof of the acting. He plays the role of a mentally scared anarchist perfectly in the movie, and that is what made him the most known joker roles played since Jack Nicholson’s performance in Tim Burton’s 1989 version of Batman.

The other reason this is a good scene is because of the camera movements in the scene, which adds emphasis to the emotions of the characters, and helps to convey them to the viewers. In the beginning of the scene, the camera tracks the different characters, to let the viewers know that the people who brought in the ‘corpse’ are not the same as the ones already in there. The close ups between Joker and the other man add emphasis to what the Joker is saying, because the expressions are more visible, which shows the Joker’s emotions and the fear of the other man.

The lighting in the scene is also a great reason the scene is good. It is not very bright, and is dull. It is dark enough to show the mood but it is not too dark because that would not correctly convey the feeling of the room to the viewer. Like the camera movement, the lighting also helps to emphasise the characters emotions, because it appears to be dark around the characters, but their facial features are brighter, and that brings the focus onto their faces. Overall, many things make this scene a good scene, and they are the reason it has gained much critical acclaim over the years since the movie’s release in 2008.


Drawing Final Reflection



Final Piece (close up)

Final Piece (close up)








Final Piece

Final Piece









My drawing was the first sketch I drew. Half of the face was mine own, and the other half was an android robot. The robot had a camera for eyes, glowing red like the Terminator, and all the facial features of the android side are bolted in; the nose is a metal plate, and the mouth is a speaker bolted in. The android side doesn’t have hair, and in the forehead, there is an open piece of the head revealing a circuit board and a processor. The human side of the face resembles mine (at least that’s what I was aiming for). The background is a layer of binary, like from the Matrix. The concept behind the drawing is that technology is getting very advanced, and it may take over the world someday. I think the drawing relates a bit to me because I like technology and I always think about how it is going to be in the future, both near and far.

For the drawing, I used two surreal techniques; transformation, and unnatural situation. The transformation was the part where my face was transforming into a robot. The unnatural situation was that me/robot were in a digital world with binary behind.

I think I did succeed in making a surreal work of art because I had surreal techniques in it. Although it was surreal, it did not turn out as well as I expected, because I made mistakes with the pen techniques.

For this project, an unknown artist from one of the previous grade 9 classes inspired me. Ms. Zaza showed us some examples, and I saw a drawing with half the face as something else, so I decided to make half my face a robot.

I used all three pen and ink techniques in my drawing. I think I didn’t use them very well because I ruined my drawing with hatching. I had to use cross-hatching to try and fix the shadows on my face. If I got another chance to do it, I would make much more hatching and cross-hatching on my face, so the whole skin is dark, and the shadows are darker. I think I was successful as using pen and ink as a medium, but I think I could have done better if I had practiced a bit more with the different techniques using the pen.

I did not face many challenges, but the only challenge lead to a mistake. I could not make the shadows properly on my face, so it ended up looking like the face of an old man. I attempted to overcome this challenge, and correct the mistake, by making the hatching into cross-hatching, but It did not work very well.

During this project, I learnt many things. I think what I learnt most about were the facial proportions. I improved on drawing faces a lot since before and after the unit. I also learnt about the different ways pen and ink can be used, which were hatching, cross-hatching, and stippling. My favorite one to use was the cross-hatching because I think it can be used in many different ways to make art, and seems easy to do as well. I don’t like stippling as much, because it takes a very long time, and I did not understand how to use it properly.

If I had the chance to do this project again, I would make a few changes to it. I would make my face darker by using hatching or cross-hatching and make the shadows even darker so they blend in. I would also do some shading on the robot side of the face, so that it would look curved and cylindrical. Another thing I would change would be to integrate more stippling to my drawing because I think it did not have enough. I would also change the binary so that it says something when translated.

Surreal Self-Portrait Process

“A self-portrait is a work of art in which the artist uses themselves as the main subject of the piece.”

In this task, my personal goal for this project is to be able to draw a face with the correct proportions and to be able to get the location of the parts right. I also want to be able to draw the face with a little bit of resemblance to the actual face. The goal set by the project is to show our understanding of the three surrealist techniques by using at least 2 of them, to show our understanding of facial proportions, to show our skills in the use of pen and ink, and our understanding or hatching, cross-hatching and stippling to create value. Another goal is to express and communicate something about who you are as a person.

I made three sketches, but I only liked one of the three. My first one was my face, but half of it was a robot face, and the other half was human. The background was binary like in “The Matrix”. My second idea was a face with reptilian eyes, and the neck of the person was transforming into a snake. The snake was in a pounce stance, and there was a shadow, however, I was not very successful with it. My third sketch was a cube, and half the face was on one side of the cube, while the other half was on another side off the edge. This did not work because I did not know how to make the perspective look good.

Of the three ideas, I think the most successful is the first idea, because it has transformation, the robot face, and unnatural setting, the binary from “The Matrix.” I also like it because it looks cool.

I received some good feedback, like “Have the human side of the face be normal letters instead of bianary” and “Try using some kind of pattern for the background,” However, I could not use the feedback given to me about the background because I did not see it fitting in with the sketch. I did however; take into consideration of having a printed circuit board shown on the robot side of the face.

I plan on turning the sketch into pen and ink using the pens, not the India ink and nib. I decided to use the pens because they will not drip ink, and this would not put the artwork under risk of being destroyed. I also decided to use the pens because they had different thicknesses. I think I will use hatching and cross-hatching because I think it will go nice with the portrait. Stippling seems a bit to spread out.

Something I want to do is add a bit of color to my self-portrait. I was thinking of having the robot eye an intense red, because this would make it look cool, and add onto the menacing look the robot side is giving. A peer also suggested coloring the printed circuit board a flat green, but I am still thinking whether I should do it or not.

Here are my three sketches:

Image 1167 Image 1168 Image 1169

Surreal Collage Final Reflection

Image 1154

In this unit, the objectives of the surreal collage task were to show our understanding of the three techniques used in surrealism. The three techniques are unnatural situation, transformation, and manipulation of size and scale. Another was to show our proficiency with using color pencils, acrylic paint, or full collage of magazine images. The third objective was to be able to correctly blend magazine images with the color pencil parts in the sketch. And the final objective was to make an interesting and creative sketch.

I think I was successful at meeting most of the objectives because I had all three of the surreal techniques. I had transformation, because the man’s head transformed into an Egyptian statue head, and the woman’s head transformed into a fish. I had unnatural setting because there were fish flying in the sky. And I had the final technique, scale and size manipulation because I had tiny trees in the sketch. I think I did not meet the proficiency with using color pencils because the quality was not very high, and there were some uneven places in the sky. I think I was able to meet the objective that was to blend the magazine images with the color pencil part. I think I did this well because I had done a good job of blending the neck of the woman with creative sketch, I think I was successful at this because my piece was surreal, and it had many things that made it interesting, for example, the flying fish in the sky.

Some challenges I faced during the task were coloring the sky, and making the shadows on the boulder. I also had difficulty to make the cracks look like cracks, and some classmates said they looked like roots.

Although I did not overcome all the challenges, I did try and fixed some of the mistakes I had made. I fixed the areas of the sky that were too dark, but I could not make it completely even. I also added shadows to the boulder and underneath the standing people, however, this did not turn out well. When I was making the cracks on the boulder, I looked on the Internet to see how they could be more realistic, but they did not turn out well either. But I did try my best.

There were many things I could have improved in my sketch. I would make sure to color the sky with the same amount of pressure, and keep the lines the same distance from each other so it looks as one background, and not different pieces. I would also try and make the cracks better by looking at many different photos on the Internet, and make the cracks look as realistic as possible.

If I had the chance to do this project again, I would try to use acrylic paint or full magazine collage because they seemed interesting. I could not do it because I did not find enough images in the magazine. It would have been an interesting project to do because we would be expressing something through the use of other images only, without a lot of modification and manipulation like we did with the color pencils. 

Surreal Sketch Reflection

1.    What are the objectives for this project?

The objectives of the surreal collage task were:

·      We had to show our understanding of the three techniques used in surrealism. The three techniques are unnatural situation, transformation, and manipulation of size and scale.

·      We had to show our proficiency with using color pencils, acrylic paint, or full collage of magazine images.

·      To be able to correctly blend magazine images with the color pencil parts in the sketch.

·      To make an interesting and creative sketch.

2.    Briefly describe the idea behind the design for your collage.

The idea behind my collage was to make it surreal and also put some pictures of things I like. I went through some magazines and found some pictures I like, at the same times, I was thinking of some loose designs I could use. I found some good images of things I like, like a basketball, and an Egyptian mask, because I enjoy basketball and history.

3.    What made you select this design over your other sketches?

I selected this design because there were multiple different reasons for why this was a good choice. It looked the best out of the three, I liked this one the most, and my peers voted for this design.

4.    Include a photo of your collage so far.

 Image 1154

5.    What do you think of your collage so far?

I think its going well, and I got most of the collage done. But the coloring the sky took a very long time, and some areas were darker while others were lighter, so I had to erase it and color over it again. I also decided to add suns to the collage.

6.    How can you improve your collage to make it more successful?

I think I could improve it by adding shadows to the boulder and underneath the two people standing. I could also improve it by making the cracks a bit darker on the boulder, and make the blue color of the sky more even. This would make it more successful because it would make the sketch look surreal, but still be a realistic drawing.

7.    How have your drawing and color pencil skills developed? (Show any before and after photos if there is a difference in your skill level)

I think my skills with color pencils have increased from before because I could clearly see the difference in my sketch’s from now and before. I learnt different techniques with color pencils like coloring closer together for more intense colors, and mixing colors together to get new ones, and blending them in using the white for a smoother finish.

Who were the surrealists? Salvador Dali and Pantonio

Salvador Dali:

Salvador Dali was a spanish artist, surrealist, and skilled draftsman. He was born in Figueres, Spain, in 1904 May 11th. He was best known for his surreal artwork, and self promotion. He waxed his moustache to get a very funny look. Other than art, Dali was also involved in photography, and film. In his lifetime, Dali made over 1500 paintings, many illustrations for books, literary work, and even a short film for Disney.

Some of his famous pieces of artwork are:

The Persistence of Memory

The Persistence of Memory, for me, is very confusing and hard to understand because I don’t know what is going on with melting clocks and a white figure. I think Dali might have painted it for himself, and that its not really meant for interpretation of other people. The Persistence of Memory was painted with oil on canvas. This painting is surreal because it has an unnatural setting, and has transformation. The unnatural setting is a desk in the middle of nowhere, and the transformation is the clocks acting like liquid. I don’t think this painting was inspired by anything because it is very difficult to understand, and Dali was one of the first surrealists.

The Three Sphinxes of Bikini

The painting, Three Sphinxes of Bikini, is quite famous and has a deep meaning. Dali was inspired to make this painting because at the time, USA conducted 23 nuclear bomb experiments on the islands of Bikini. The people that inhabited the islands were relocated to USA mainland before the experiments, and were sent back 10 years later. 20 years after the experiments, the inhabitants discovered that radiation levels were still dangerously high. That was when Dali decided to paint Three Sphinxes of Bikini, with oil on canvas. This painting is surreal because it contains unnatural setting, which is the middle of nowhere, it contains size and scale aspects, for example, the heads are bigger than normal; The painting also contains transformation, the head transforms into a tree, then a head again.


Another famous piece of artwork by Salvador Dali is Sleep, was inspired by his area of residence as a child, Cape de Creus, which is now a famous site in Spain. The painting was done on canvas with oil, and contains all three aspects of surreal art. It contains transformation because the face is transforming into a blob, it contains unnatural setting because it is in the middle of a desert-like place, and it also contains size and scale aspects, because a face is not that big. The painting looks funny to me because the nose of the face is really big, like a cartoon character.

Over all, I think Salvador Dali is a great artist, and has a lot of talent to be able to draw surreal artwork. His painting skills are great, and I would like to see more of his artwork, but I cannot understand the meaning of the painting just by looking at it. I would have to research about it on the internet. It would be good to see some paintings of observed objects made by Dali.

I chose Dali for this assignment because, in my opinion, he is the most known surrealist and I have seen his artwork many times before. I also picked him because I knew he was very famous, so there would be lots of credible information about him on the Internet.


Pantonio, although not his real name (which shall not be revealed), is known all over the world for his surreal artwork. He is a surreal artist and street artist. There was not much information about his life on the internet, so I sent him an email asking for a few questions, which he happily replied to. He did not however, give exact information about himself as it could lead to some issues. Pantonio was born around Christmas 1975, in Terceira, Portugal. Pantonio got into arts when he was a child. As a child, Pantonio received many gifts from his parent’s friends that were related to drawing. He also went to all freely available workshops of drawing, painting and sculpting. Pantonio was also a shy boy, and was afraid of large crowds, so drawing relieved him it was a “safe place.” He did his first exhibition at the age of 14.

Pantonio gets a lot of his inspiration from the movement of the dynamic ocean which surrounds his home islands. He was also inspired by many unnamed, painters, writers and musicians. But for drawings, he was inspired by russian drawings. In my opinion, I think Pantonio does a great job of making surreal artwork, and I would love to see it in person someday.

Pantonio does a lot of his work with spray paints on walls or wood, but recently he has been using acrylic paints because he likes the plasticity and vibrations of the lines that are made from it. Pantonio has made many pieces of artwork with spray paints and acrylic paints, here are some:

The photo above shows one of the several street paintings Pantonio has done. His inspiration from the ocean can be seen in this painting because of how the lines are painted. This painting is surreal because It is in an unnatural setting, and it has transformation. What seems to look like a wolf’s head, is transforming into many lines which resemble hair. It is a beautiful painting and is painted on a wall with a white background.

This painting is similar to the 1st one, but this is done on a white boat. Again, the wavy lines show the inspiration from the ocean waves. This painting is surreal because the woman’s head is transforming in the dark, wavy lines, and they seem to turn into tentacles at the end.

This painting is also very similar to the two paintings before. It is on a white wall, and has the wavy lines which have drawn inspiration from the ocean. The painting is of a woman’s head, transforming into lines, and there seem to be many other little fish near her that are also transforming. This painting it surreal because it contains transformation.

I chose Pantonio as my second artist because he is not like some of the other surrealists. Most of the surrealists were from the early 1900s, and usually did they paintings on canvas with paints. But Pantonio uses different techniques. He paints on the streets, on boats, and not only with paints, but with sprays as well. Several of his pieces are drawings on many different papers and then put together on a wall. Over all, he is a great artist, and I would like to see new and exciting artwork from him.

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Air Quality/Pollution

The main problem with the city is air pollution. Although it is very low, and not very damaging, it is a bigger problem than other types of pollution. To solve the problem of air pollution, I used a very new, but effective technology. The mineral peridotite is used to make a new kind of cement that absorbs CO2. It then produces calcite and that can be used for many things. Calcite can be used for soil remediation, which means removing pollutants from soil. It can also be used to replace glass. During WW2, it was used to make gun sights. The CO2 absorbing cement reduces the amount of CO2 in the air, and it also helps the agriculture of the city. Peridotite is very practical, and is the most abundant mineral in the Earth’s mantle, and also has many surface deposits. It absorbs carbon and traps it in the molecular structure of calcite. It is not in use at many places in the world, but in Oman, the natural deposits of peridotite absorb almost 4 billion tons of CO2 each year.

The setback to using peridotite is that the transformation of CO2 to the solid calcite takes a very long time, and would not be useful for many hundred years. There are also limitations on acquiring peridotite because there are few surface deposits of peridotite, and it is difficult to get it from the mantle as volcanoes do not erupt frequently, and when they do, they do not always bring out peridotite with the ash and lava. Acquiring the peridotite might be problem, but there are no limitations in this project, so it allows me to use technology like this.

Energy Needs

The present energy production of Reykjavik is 73% renewable (mostly geothermal energy) and 27% fossil fuels. I changed this to 50% geothermal energy, and 50% coal. I changed this because of the new technology I am using for the building material. It is a cement that absorbs CO2, and produces calcite with it. With this technology, energy can be produced efficiently, and it would not affect the environment negatively. Energy will also be produced through solar panels, but there is very little hours of sunlight in Reykjavik, so it will only produce a very small, and almost insignificant, amount of energy. It could only be used for back up electricity for elevators. Every building in the city will have solar panels on the roofs. Some other sources of energy are the dynamos in the bicycles, and the energy producing tiles on the roads, but they too, produce very small amounts of electricity.

The way the electricity will be produced is very similar and both include heating water. There are multiple ways electricity is produced with geothermal energy. The technique that will be used in Reykjavik is called the Binary Cycle Power plant. The hot water from the geothermal energy is cycled through the ground and up to the power plant. In the power plant, a heat exchanger transfers the heat to another cycle of water which is heated and evaporated to steam. That steam is then used to spin a turbine and power a generator. That steam then condenses, and in liquid state, it is ready to be heated and evaporated again to go through the same cycles. Here is a diagram explaining this:

Electricity from coal is produced very similarly, but the only difference is that the coal is burnt to heat water, which is then turned to steam. The coal also gives of CO2 as a byproduct, and leaves ash as waste as well. Here is a diagram explaining this:

Although coal does negatively affect the environment, it is controlled through the peridotite. I increased the use of fossil fuels from 27% to 50% so that the accumulation of calcite on the peridotite buildings would be more significant in a few centuries rather than around a millennium. The limitation to using coal would be the money spent on importing it from another place as Reykjavik has no coal or fossil fuel production of itself. The limitation to geothermal energy would be to manage the power plant because if there is a problem in the generator, turbine, or heat exchanger, this could negatively affect the whole city because only the industrial zone is powered with coal. So if the energy production fails at some point, the city will only have solar panels bicycle dynamos to produce electricity, and as mentioned above, it would not be sufficient.