Week 13: Thinking Critically about the Web

The internet has greatly affected the way that media is consumed globally. Within the past decade, media consumption has become non-stop. The internet now connects all of humanity on phones, music streaming, and even TV’s so there is literally no escaping the grasp of online media. Besides the fact that media is now always present in an individual’s life it also has created a larger sense of community that has never before existed within the history of mankind. People from all corners of the globe can connect because of a single idea, movie, or music group creating a new sense of wonder that could have never been done before. The internet as created a global community that absorbs different types of media and then the community reacts to it.

The reading also talked about the difficult balance between fans and the product owners. Logically fans cannot exist without the product and the product can not survive without fans, therefore creating a complicated cycle that quickly becomes a culture. When fans have a deep interest they create art, stories, mini-films, and a slue of other things; many product owners, however, try to stifle fans from doing so because it can cause copy write issues as well as creating an unwelcoming (explicit) environment for any new fans. So product owners legally restrict and hold the rights to their creations all while maintaining a fake “fan friendly” environment that seems to promote the creativity within fans. If product owners restrict their creations to heavily, the fan base will begin to leave due to most likely feeling unappreciated and not free to express their creative interest in the subject. This is the power cycle that fans and product owners, one cannot live without the other so therefore once the fans or the product owners back out the product ceases to exist.

Within the past four years, however, it has become almost impossible to stifle a fan base’s creative works. There are too many platforms and more importantly too many fans to watch and restrict from creating different works. The constant role of the internet has created an enormous fan environment that cannot be controlled by legal practices like fan bases were controlled during the previous decades.

The video game industry as I see it is built differently than most media industries. Video games rely on fan interaction to survive. This is extremely evident on how many different Youtube videos there are of individuals and channels playing video games just so other people can watch them play that game. By working directly with the fanbase of different video game franchise the product owners of video games have created an alternative form of advertising that they do not even have to initiate. Instead of video game owners trying to stifle fans who record their video game experience and release it, like many movie media companies do, they allow fan culture to drive future sales of their game and the industry.

final project, homework

Week 11: Lights, Camera, Action!

Today is the day! My group is finally filming our final project. We chose to film in my on-campus apartment, due to the fact that the living room is very spacious and can be manipulated with props and set dressing. I am satisfied with the progress we are making so far even though we hit one major bump along the way. That bump would be our scheduling conflicts. While all groups have trouble scheduling around everyone’s individual life, I feel as though we are having an even more difficult time being that a half of our group, myself included, was planning on returning home this weekend for Easter.

While we all made plans to film on Thursday night one of our group members would not be able to attend the filming, so to compensate she will receive more of the writing portion. Through good communication we were able to evenly distribute the workload while accommodating everyone in the group, resulting in a positive ending.

Currently, we have not had any issues in our group other than the whole scheduling hurdle.

Soon after we finish the filming we do plan to edit the video as soon as possible. This is extremely important because I personally as well as my whole group would like the project to be done with not only so that we can concentrate on the paper portion, but also so that we can concentrate on the final exams and projects of other classes.

Being that we had no major comments towards our storyboard form the instructor we plan to use it throughout the video without making major edits. However, we do completely realize that edits to the storyboard might have to be made to keep our video high quality and to also keep it within the designated time limit.


final project, homework

Week 10: The Creative Commons Search

As we all steam ahead with our final projects, I turned to Creative Commons to find some free and legal material to use towards our skit for the final project.

The first piece of media I found using Creative Commons was the video shown below of a person typing on their laptop. During our skit, we plan for our actors to search on the web for Carrer Services, the Focus 2 program, and to scroll and click through the program itself. While this video will be useful, there will be a continuity error while using it. I do not believe that any of us have the laptop that is being used within the video so that varying aspect will bother me in particular. So we will most likely shoot this part ourselves and add it in.

The second piece of media is this picture which I found on Flickr. This image can be used during the beginning of the video in an intro section if we choose to do that. Being that this video will be more of a skit and not a direct infomercial I am not entirely sure that this image will be used because in the end, I’m not 100% sure where it can go. If we do choose to use this image, however, I think that it works well with the theme of finding a career and a major can be easy while using Focus 2.

Careers Key

The third piece of media I found was off of Soundcloud. It is upbeat ukelele background music, that is really good because it is free. While I am sure that we would all prefer to have a song everyone knows playing in the background of a college dorm room, due to copyright laws this song will have to do. It is cheery and subtle to keep the audience engaged in the skit that is taking place.

final project, homework

~The Storyboard~ Part 2: After

The storyboard process as mainly how I predicted it to be, easy but hard at the same time. While my group works well together, we are all really busy individuals so it took some time for all of us to sit together and come up with the main storyboard. We also all do realize that while we have the main idea of what the storyboard should be, it is always open to being edited. By keeping this in mind, I think, it will allow us to have a little more flexibility during the filming process in case we run into any complications.

In the near future, I hope that we write down a complete script. While our storyboard has stage directions and words written on it, I think a literal script would be helpful. I might feel this way because I was a theatre kid and seem to prefer to read blocking, stage direction, actions, and dialogue in a script format. I do believe that my group can pull this off without adding on more work to the whole project.

Concerning the reading and the final project, there is one main point. The biggest point the article makes is that today the main form of self expresion and creativity, is to create a combination of works previously produced in the past. This can be encorporated into the final project by referenceing pop culture and humor from our past and “remixing” it so it has purpose in the project.

final project, homework

~The Storyboard~ Part 1: Before

Creative direction is an extremely difficult thing. While my final project group and are making the starting efforts of putting together an awesome project, it is difficult because every individual on the planet has a different creative process. So, as in any project, it is somewhat difficult to get all of our amazing ideas into one cohesive storyboard, but I am sure we will get there. We are working steadily towards building our own storyboard and I hope to continue in this direction. All of us are communicating very well and I hope that we continue doing this. My group currently has a GoogleDocs, GoogleSlides, and a GroupeMe set up that we are all actively using, and I am extremely confident that we will be carrying this out throughout the whole entire project.

So far our storyboard is quite small due to the fact that our hectic schedules are keeping us from making a full storyboard in one sitting. We are also planning on taking pieces from each of our personal storyboards to create the final storyboard that we will use to film the project in it the end.  I look forward to updating what our process will be like after the storyboard is complete!

homework, review

My Midterm Response and Top 5 Classmate Blogs

My Midterm Blog Response

The creative process for my midterm blog was somewhat hectic, my creative process is. The College Road Trip is a travel blog focusing on the key aspect of saving the audience money. In order to set the blog apart from the rest, I decided to go on “Example Trips”, meaning that I would go on road trip vacations and produce a video that will show all the steps I took in order to save money.

Making the blog itself was fun, I loved designing the header, even though photo editing is extremely tedious, and I really loved developing series of pages that I thought would add depth to the blog, specifically meaning I wanted it to look more functional than just having a “Home” page.

Moving onto the making of my video. I made the first “Example Trip” video based on the trip I took over spring break to Washington D.C. There were two challenges I faced while making the video. The first was filming everything I needed in Washington D.C. before I actually put the video together, meaning I needed to keep track of what I needed to film and if I forgot about it I would not be able to just go back outside and reshoot being that it is four hours away from my dorm. The second problem was making sure to keep the video format away from a “vlogging” one. I had to remember that I could not just be filming what I was doing at any moment, I had to constantly remember and be aware that I had to put everything in the video that would be relevant to the main point of The College Road Trip.

When I completed my midterm project I was very satisfied with the results. I also found the entire experience of producing and distributing my own blog and videos exciting and I would like to continue doing that hopefully in my future employment.

My Top 5 Midterm Blogs

5. “The College Fitness Blog” by Molly

For number five on my list of favorite midterm blogs, I chose “The College Fitness Bog” by Molly O’Brien. I really like the header for this blog, I think it is a really cute picture that shows that the blog is dedicated to students who want to get in shape. I also really like the welcome post it covers a lot of topics in one post so it really shows the range of topics that the blog intends to cover. I also thought the video was very straight forward and easy to follow, which I think is a very important aspect for any recipe video.

4. “Just Go Shoot” by Jeffrey

For my number four choice, I chose “Just Go Shoot” by Jeffrey Gomez. This blog overall looked very clean and professional. I like that on the bottom of the home page there are common terms that are used throughout the blog. I also liked that there are different pages for different photography like nature, sports, and city photos these different pages have a multitude of different pictures which really show how much time and effort went into the blog. The video was also very well done and it was very nice to see how to use photoshop because it is something that we did not use in class but would likely use in the future.

3. “Beauty by Geri” by Geri

My third choice is “Beauty by Geri” for a few main reasons. The biggest is that this blog seems very personal and welcoming. The color scheme of the background and header creates a happy feel that I think would keep an audience coming back to this blog. I also enjoy the few posts that are on the blog it shows that this is not just a makeup blog but also a hair one as well.  The menu bar also offers easy access to find posts related to their main category, meaning that the audience can easily access all that the blog has to offer.

2. “NYC Eats Under $20” by Rhianne

My second choice is “NYC Eats Under $20” by Rhianne. I absolutely love the concept for this blog, growing up in New York City has taught me to do my research before going out to eat and this blog seems to do it all for me. Not only does it offer cheap places to eat, it also has another topic category about restaurants that go viral to see if they are really worth it. Rhianne went to the cookie dough bar that I would have loved to go to, so I am happy to see another opinion on the eatery before I make my journey there. The blog looks clean and professional, my only critique is that maybe a slight change in the background color, but overall I really like this blog.

1. “All Things Firefly” by Lorena

My number one choice was “All Things Firefly” by Lorena! This blog looks like it could actually be an official blog used for Firefly Music Festival. I think this is due to the multiple header images with a link to their individual page that appears when you scroll down the home page. The blog was well thought out with multiple pages with varying topics. I have been contemplating buying a pass to Firefly this year but have not committed because I am not entirely sure what to expect at a music festival because I have never attended one. Maybe it is because this blog fills the audience niche that I would be apart of, but I love the design and content of this blog throughout. Great Job!


Google Docs??

I was not sure if I was supposed to include anything in my class blog about my final project because I need clarification on this weeks instructions for homework. If we are supposed to mention our expierence in google docs, I have used it before and always use it when I am doing a group project!


homework, video

Week 6: Editing Video & Week 7 homework

Week 6 Editing Video

Starting from the beginning this week’s homework was not that hard for me, mainly due to the fact that I have used iMovie a lot throughout high school. Another thing that I have to say is that my video exceeds the two-minute maximum limit. This is because if I was going to get the video under two minutes, it would have seriously lacked quality. I would have been listing off my likes and dislikes of each ePortfolio too quickly for anyone to understand, and being that it is longer now I feel that it flows better and is overall a better video. Also, another tip that I have found useful in the past and with this project, is that I write a script for everything I am going to say. It works great because you are not left with awkward pauses in your speech that you would have to edit out later.

Strategic Presentation Week 6 from Deanna van Woerkom on Vimeo.


Week 7 Designing Games Intro

After reading Playing Politics: Video Games for Politics, Activism, Advocacy by Dr. Ian Bogost I agree with him that video games can convey a very diverse array of meaning. The point of video games is to make the user feel like they are playing a game, no matter the genre that the game falls into. The game however almost always has hidden meanings, messages, and knowledge throughout the game, so that the player learns throughout the gameplay.

For instance in the game Uncahrted 4: A Thief’s End (as seen below) is an adventure game that takes you on a quest to find the lost treasure of Henry Every. While the game seems to just be another treasure hunting game, the player is actually taught the history of pirates and pirate folklore from the 17th and 18th centuries. this game conveys an education without the gamer even realizing it.

Image borrowed fromhttp://www.jeuxvideo.com/wikis-soluce-astuces/485459/chapitre-22-la-fin-d-un-voleur.htm
Image borrowed fromhttp://www.jeuxvideo.com/wikis-soluce-astuces/485459/chapitre-22-la-fin-d-un-voleur.htm

The point of any video game is to give the user an experience. Within the games that Dr. Ian Bogost talked about he analyzes several early 00s video games, which each game that he analyzes and alludes to the fact that the point of the video game is to secretly convey a message or lesson to the user without the user even knowing it.

Another instance of this can be found in one of my favorite video games Portal 2 (seen below). The game at first seems like a complete puzzle game, making the player work their way through puzzles or “test chambers” as the game calls it. Once I completed the game, however, I noticed the games hidden meaning. Artificial Intelligence and how it can be harmful to the human race is one of the central meanings of the game. The game also alludes to an extremely controlling government that leads to a post-apocalyptic world. Both of these meanings were subtlely passed onto the gamer without the gamer even knowing.

Image borrowed from https://chips-and-bits.com/episodes/portal-2
Image borrowed from https://chips-and-bits.com/episodes/portal-2