Moodswings

Making a piece of work about moodswings under the banner of randomness was originally a joke. We don't, socially, tend to take the term very seriously. But even the most balanced of us can experience moods that overwhelm us from time to time.

Through initial research into the subject, and by paying attention to the flow of my own moods, I became intrigued by the fact that we seem to experience multiple moods simultaneously, that they can appear at times to be random, at others clearly based on external circumstances, and that moods are layered: a cluster of moods within a larger mood which sits within a larger mood still. Psychologists talk about a 'meta-mood experience' - "a regulatory process that monitors, evaluates and at times changes mood" * - which I interpret as our capacity to be aware of how we are feeling.

Moodswings is made up of sequences of music and images, each one suggesting a mood. Friends** were asked to view and listen to each sequence, noting down and recording their reactions (dictated in part by their own experiences and circumstances). Music and images are then paired together at random, with the voiceovers relating to both components layered over the top, at times contradicting each other, creating mood sequences. These self-generating sequences play one after the other in a random order, that order in turn generating one overriding final mood.

* The Experience and Meta-Experience of Mood , John D Mayer and Yvonne N Gaschke
** Huge thanks to Heather Leach, Simon George, Dan Beddison and Heath Essam for their help and contributions.

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