Intimate, indispensible GIF: My Grandfather died at the end of January this year. One of my fondest memories is he would take me rock hunting, he would always keep the rocks and no one really ever thought to ask why. After he passed away we found out what he was doing with them. He had made them into little statues and painted them. They were all labeled for each of the grandchildren. These are the two he made for me, with them were a note: “Don’t forget to laugh”. I keep them close and when I am missing Grandpa I will sit and talk with them. I love them.

The Art Assignment Ep. 3 - Intimate, indispensable GIF

When I heard the words ‘intimate and indispensable’ my mind immediately jumped to ‘wheelchair’. This is a GIF of my wheel spinning. I took video of myself doing all sorts of things and this made the best GIF out of the lot.

The indispensable part is pretty simple. I cannot move without my chair. I cannot walk more than 2 metres unaided and even then I feel considerable pain. My chair is a part of me. It is my legs. It is the very essence of my independence.

The intimate part is all that stuff I just told you about. I don’t tell that stuff to everyone (he says telling The Internet). My disability is a very personal thing. The struggles I face on a daily basis are something few people will ever understand. That’s OK. It is my choice to hide all of that behind smoke and mirrors. My chair is the symbol of those struggles. It is the reason they are kept largely invisible. It is the smoke and mirrors.


Watching this week’s Art Assignment, I immediately knew what I wanted to do. To me, intimacy is something that is best found naturally. Luckily for me, I’ve been capturing tons of video footage of my friends over the past year or so, so I have tons of footage of some of my favorite moments with them. They are very much indispensable to me. Hopefully these gifs help show that. 

Top Left: My best friend playing the cowbell at pep band. Sam was practically born a drummer, and there’s nothing quite like seeing somebody in their zone doing what they do. 

Top Right: Ever since I started vlogging over the summer, my friends have become more and more accustomed to the camera. This captures that. 

Middle Left: The pep band has a tradition of singing bohemian rhapsody on the bus back from games. Here’s everyone mid-belting. 

Middle Right: One of the more memorable nights of my life - here’s Hana and Rose on the drums and Andrew screaming on vocals letting off steam after a long week. We all jammed out for a good while after that. 

Bottom Left: Our Christmas party. Rose gave Ray a little toy bus. I’ve never seen a happier kid. 

Bottom Right: Hana and I laughing about who knows what on New Years. Another memorable night to me. I think shared laughter is more intimate than we give it credit for. 


In case you don’t follow The Art Assignment yet (and you should, you really should), here is our most recent episode with Toyin Odutola. 

Currently mulling over what my own GIF is going to be. Watch the video, and then make your own and post it online using #theartassignment!


It’s Intimate, Indispensable GIF day! Here are some highlights from the many fantastic GIFs that have come in so far. 

And we’ll be featuring more on tumblr today. 

Oh, and if you haven’t seen Toyin Odutola’s Art Assignment episode, you should watch that first!

Intimate Indispensable Gif - The Art Assignment #3

This is a very late response to an old assignment, which was to articulate something intimate and indispensable as a gif.

I recently made a portrait of John Green, and I took pictures of some of the intermediate steps while reaching the finished drawing, which are now a gif.

Just to be clear, it’s not John Green, who is intimate/indispensable for me (though I really do like him). It’s my passion for drawing. :) It gives me a feeling of accomplishment that nothing else does. I love making drawings, and I love looking at the drawings that I make, and it’s something I’m sure I’ll do all my life.

My Art Blog

My Name: Riddhi

Intimate, Indispensable GIF

I’ve had these pictures taken for months and then the photoshop I had was too outdated to be able to make gifs and then the end of my semester, but now, behold! My first gif! Done for The Art Assignment’s third assignment.

I don’t get to play my bass as much as I’d like to anymore, but it’s still absolutely indispensable to me. I love music and I love bass and I barely have any words to describe what it means to me. Following music also lead me to the path I’m on now. A path that I am incredibly excited about. When taking these pictures I wanted to be certain that they would all be from my perspective, what I see when I play.

This is my Intimate, Indispensable gif. I chose pictures from my summer at a sleep over camp as a counsellor. It’s pretty clear from the photos who was most important to me and I am so pleased that I shared a summer with them.

Finally I got this to work. Took me so long to pick these pictures and get them in gif form. Relatively pleased with how it turned out.

Thanks to The Art Assignment for giving me a reason to look back at my past summer and reminisce about the phenomenal times I had. 

This is my gif for the Art Assignment #3: Intimate, Indispensable GIF - Odin Odutola. I captured these images with my Canon AE-1 35mm film camera. I wanted the pictures with my glasses off to be out of focus to simulate my nearsightedness. My glasses are my life. I am essentially blind without my contacts or glasses. Because I was using a film camera, it was very difficult to take the pictures that are actually in focus. The out of focus ones were easy. I had to make sure I was the same distance from the camera as my test object was. I used my camera’s built in timer and took all of these in one try. Of course I didn’t know how they turned out until I developed the film. Satisfied, I tried to make a gif on my own but it always ended up being too large for tumblr to use. So I used and it worked wonderfully.

Intimate Indispensable GIF: Tea

So there’s this thing called The Art Assignment on YouTube ( theartassignment on tumblr) where contemporary artists give people little creative exercises to challenge them to think in new ways and such. One episode of this that I’d wanted to do something for for a while was an assignment given by Toyin Odutola (toyinodutola) was to take something intimate and indispensable to you and express it in the form of a GIF. Toyin chose her hands; I chose tea.

Toyin said in the video of the assignment that the working on art is kind of like a form of prayer; in a very distracting world, getting lost in the process of drawing centres you. I get that feeling too, but what I also get it from is tea.

The ritual associated with putting down everything that I’m doing, waiting for the water to boil and preparing the tea is pretty prayer-like. Muslims turn towards Mecca five times a day; I turn to my kettle. The process removes everything from my head and centres me again. It gives me time to breathe in a day that’s otherwise jammed with mental activity.

It’s also the only thing that really ties me to any kind of cultural identity. We’ve pretty much agreed that if any kind of apocalypse were to befall Britain and Ireland, the survivors would last about as long as the tea supplies, upon which they’d make sure there was a bullet for everyone.


You created these incredible GIFs to capture what was intimate and indispensable to you. They were the first GIFs many of you had ever made, and they turned out fantastic: 

1. everythingsshinycaptainn:
2. qwirksilver:
3. Meg:
4. musicboxgirl:
5. Jaymii:
6. Eefje:
7. Danielle:
8. mundaneepiphanies:
9. gryffindork19:
10. Alex:

See More


The Art Assignment #3: Intimate, indispensable GIF

Tea is the base of my daily life. I drink tea every day, alone and with people. It calms me, it motivates me, it comforts me, it lightens me up. I drink tea when I’m sad, I drink tea when I’m happy, I drink tea when I’m angry. It’s the one thing I always return to, everyday.

(Also this was my first time of real GIF making)

Intimate, Indispensable GIF [x]

Among many things, my eyes are indispensable to me, solely because YouTube is one of the most important things in my life.

The YT community is only an ever-changing universe of awesome, mind-bogglingly talented and wise individuals, rich with opportunity and life experiences, and it is one of the only things that never fails to get me extremely excited about the future. If it wasn’t for YT, the art assignment wouldn’t have happened, VidCon wouldn’t have happened, I would have never been this happy, I would have never known the world was so colourful.

YouTube was an escape for me before, but now it’s an adventure.


Check out The Art Assignment: VidCon Edition, featuring Emily Graslie, WheezyWaiter, Mike Rugnetta, Steve Goldbloom, and yours truly!

Last month in Anaheim, Sarah and the Art Assignment crew challenged me and a few other YouTubers to contribute our own assignments from past episodes of her show (if you’re not watching it, you should really be watching it). 

I articulated my take on David Brooks’ “Never Seen, Never Will”, Emily created a playful psychological landscape (no fair because she’s an actual artist!), Mike shared a wonderfully intimate and indispensable moment via GIF, Steve sought a quiet place in a land with no quiet places, and Craig spoke like God through a walkie-talkie. They are all brilliant and creative and thoughtful and I am so happy that I got to be a part of this :)

I hope we inspire a few of you to go out and experience the many kinds of art that exist in your world.