The Intermedial Zoom

The project focuses on the technique of zoom and its approaches across different media, from a comparative perspective. We are interested to compare the particularities of zooming in cartography, photography, film and textual materials, trying to identify patterns of expressivity on the level of meaning, aesthetic and cognitive reflection, and their possible uses in creating new digital paradigms.

From a theoretical perspective, the study may address the following or similar types of questions:
- meaning of zooming camera movement in movie scenes;
- artistic or pedagogic usages of photographic and cartographic zoom;
- change of scale and global/local dynamics in cognitive processes and object perception;
- detail as an aesthetic and cognitive category in electronic zoom;
- stylistic or narrative zooming effects in fictional and non-fictional texts;
- transposition to a new medium of a zoom approach usually related to another support or mode of expression.

From a practical, experimental perspective, the project is based on an existing model of textual zoom (z-text) and interface (zoom-editor) allowing the text to be structured on levels of details and to be explored by zoom-in and zoom-out, in a way similar to a scalable map. With application in creative writing, literary criticism or pedagogy, the model may be used in potential scenarios such as:
- gradual disclosure of details as an analytic, stylistic or storytelling strategy;
- variable physical or emotional proximity/distance to a textual object, simulating a camera-like approach;
- topic unfolding as a scalable map, from simple to complex, intuitive to abstract, “bird’s eye view” to tiny detail;
- kaleidoscopic view by change of the visualization tool (considering the same episode with different magnifying glasses).



Kinds of collaborators
Individual/small group
Graduate students
Help description
You are invited to contribute to the project: - as a collaborator in the theoretical part intended to a collective volume on zooming as an exploratory metaphor and aesthetic category of the emerging electronic culture; - as a beta-tester of the interface that can be used in your own creative writing, reading, pedagogic, etc. experiments; - as a sponsor of the future developments of the project; - feedback, bugs report, suggestions are also welcome.
Contact person
Help needed