Jaime Levy's a punk! She's been putting out creative, in-yer-face digital zines for years. She started with Cyber Rag, using HyperCard in all it's black & white chunky pixel glory. Then, she moved to California, and the name of her output changed to Electronic Hollywood. She switched to MacroMind's Director and her interactive animations got a lot more colorful. Even though she has guest writers, uses sampled sounds, and displays found graphics, Jaime's style is all her own.
Even when presenting text, Levy's not overly concerned with the article being readable. She often chooses very artistic, yet not terrifically readable, display fonts for her body text. Her navigation techniques are very straight edged. There's usually one button to go forward, flashing like a lazy strobe, and maybe there's a way to jump back to the table of contents. Very rarely can you page back, only forward. This user- unfriendliness shows up again & again. One is unable to skip to various parts of her electronic novel, Ambulance, only to travel page by page. This can wear pretty thin if you want to look up something 50 pages away. The animation she produced for the Billy Idol Cyberpunk record messes up your system color palette until you reboot.
Now that I've got all that whining out of my system...
I like Levy's work quite a bit. Her use of sampled sound loops, a signature of her creations, is first rate. It makes interacting with her work very immediate, instilling a performance momentum. Her use of color is very deft, getting a lot of mileage out of very simple animation and color cycling. A "digital primitive," if you will. I get the feeling that her work has enough energy to leave the screen, if I don't keep my eye on it. Finally her attitude, cynical and adventuresome, sharpens her observational skills as she covers the cyberarts scene. I heartily encourage you to pick up the current Electronic Hollywood. Hell, buy the collected works and support digital publishing!
PO Box 448
Prince St. Station
NYC, NY 10012
$6/issue, Color Mac required.
Graphic: from Cyber Rag II
Here is the TEXT POPUP for Electronic Hollywood:
Here are the contents of Electronic Hollywood Issue #2 - The Riot Issue.
There are two article sections: Music and Story.
"Reviews and Samples from two great California Bands, S.F., L.A." Those bands were "The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy" and "Ethyl Meatplow".
Story contains 4 items:
1- An editorial about what it's like to live in a Riot Zone.
2- A review of the L.A. Riot by Adam Parfrey.
3- A review of the Verbum Party celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Human Be-in in San Francisco.
4- A review of the Home Media Expo.