Best Shots Photoset

This week I took a massive amount of photos, but only a few were great enough to save in my photo hall of fame. Ladies and Gentlemen! I give you my best shots of this week!

Mah Best Shahts!

Optical IllusionHow I See YouCrunchy,Shiny, and NewFlowerbed from an Ant's PerspectiveHuman Complexitiy at its Finest
Representation of Human Emotion

These 6 lucky photos proved themselves worthy of being in the spotlight, conquering all odds! The first shot was the visual assignment called Optical Illusion where I stood at a distance to smash my friend between my fingers! This photo just SCREAMS evil! The second image was a visual assignment that I created called How I See You where it shows how someone with glasses sees someone with and without their glasses. I got this inspiration when a friend on facebook thought my glasses had the power to look at people and mirror my true image of them. In the image is my best friend, Barbie, from middle school.The next piece of art is an assortment of delicious apples taken at Food Lion. This was for the Daily Create where we had to take a photo of something new and shiny. I don’t know about you, but I think fresh-picked apples are pretty shiny. Next is a photo of one of UMW’s flowerbeds…taken from an ant’s perspective during my photoblitz.At first I thought the shot was ruined because this lady got caught walking, but then I realized that she added a bit more student life to it. I have no clue who she was, but I’m glad she walked by. The second to last is a picture of the front of Trinkle Hall. This was also done during the photoblitz to represent Human Complexity. Finally, my favorite, is a picture of the James Farmer Memorial. The explination for why it is my favorite can be found HERE.

Let’s give a round of applause for the winners! They will be joined in the near future by any other distinguished individuals!

DS106 Radio Bumper!

Best with headphones!!


Woah, this assignment was so fun that I started it immediately after it was assigned. I’d grown up listening to different radio stations (mainly the ones my parents and older sister played in the car,) and I would pay attention, not just to the songs, but to the commercials and promos; so much so that I began copying the ads word for word (driving my mom crazy.)

I created this bumper using Garageband, which is a program that comes with Mac computers, and all of the sounds were from the built-in sound library. I based the bumper after the general radio stations that say their station’s name like 3 or more times, sample a clip from one of their shows, and offer to connect with the audience online. There were 8 tracks total, each one having a different audio output or distortion. I also layered the recordings over one another to reduce the time in between. Radio stations do this to get as much time into their promo as possible since they only get maybe 15-20 seconds. The best way to learn the format of radio commercials is by listening to all the commercials whenever they come on (and not turn to a different station!)

Picture 3

Sonic Rainboom! The Story Structure

In the video we reviewed, Kurt Vonnegut discusses the common ways that stories are structured. I used his ideas and applied them to an episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (don’t laugh! these aren’t your average ponies!) entitled “Sonic Rainboom.”

In this episode, Rainbow Dash, a blue Pegasus, practices for a contest called “The Best Young Flyers Competition.” The winner of this contest gets the chance to spend the day with the Wonderbolts, the greatest team of flyers in all of Equestria (also Rainbow’s idols) The central problem of the episode arises when Dash figures out that she can’t perform the legendary Sonic Rainboom, and she believes that she’s going to blow it at the competition. In the end, after a major minor inconvenience, she does eventually perform the technique and meet her childhood heroes.

I chose to start off Rainbow Dash’s story arch a little above the “average protagonist line” because Dash is a gifted pegasus who’s speed is nearly incomparably to any other flyer, which gives her character a small advantage. When she discovers that she cant do the Sonic Rainboom her position on the timeline goes down and continues to decrease until her friends arrive to cheer her on, which causes it to go back up slightly. Now here’s where the 2nd conflict arises; Rainbow’s friend, Rarity (a preppy fashionista,) is so busy admiring her newly acquired wings, that she completely forgets about Rainbow Dash’s nervousness. This new conflict reduces Rainbow Dash’s confidence once again, and even more as the episode progresses and Rarity gains more of the other ponies’ attention. Finally, Dash hits her lowest point when Rarity decides to enter the competition herself¬† to show off. (Some friend she is!) Miraculously, Rainbow’s luck changes when Rarity’s wings melt in the sunlight and she begins to fall to her doom! How does this boost Rainbow up on the timeline? Well this is the exact catastrophic incident that Dash needed to give her the wing-power to perform the Sonic Rainboom. After this incident, she wins the competition AND gets to meet the Wonderbolts, which propels her story to OFF SCALE HAPPINESS!

This episode is one of my favorites of the series and I encourage others to watch it! Sure, in most of the episodes there’s usually a happy ending for the mane main cast, but it’s not about the ending. It’s about the journey traveled to get there!

Side Note: This series is not just for girls anymore. There is a huge group consisting of millions of fans called Bronies, men ages 15-30 who enjoy the series. Not kidding! There’s even a Brony Club at UMW!

Respect Your Ancestors! Appreciating Past DS106ers

I went through a good number of past DS106 “Best Projects” and analyzed how they changed a simple story into a digital story using creative tools to aid them. I really enjoyed how the students used these tools to their advantage to create marvelous works of art. These creations have now broadened my previous understanding of what a “digital story” is by introducing new styles of storytelling, such as mashups and remixes.

Although I enjoyed all of the projects, the one project that really stuck out to me was Kiersten’s Toy Story Mashup. After growing up with Disney, especially Toy Story, this trailer really stuck my nostalgic buttons. I love how she created the trailer using not just one of the movies, but from using all 3 of them to bring together the themes. By doing this, she creates a link from the beginning of Andy’s childhood to when he grows up and goes to college.¬† This not only represents Andy’s progression through life, but it also represents the children in the audience who grew up watching Andy and his toys come to life. In 2010, when Toy Story 3 came out, I noticed that when I went to see it in theaters that the majority of the audience was older high school seniors rather than young children. By the end of the movie when Andy generously gives his childhood toys away, the individuals in the theater who were the most swamped with tears was this same age group. The theater remained in tears long after the movie had ended. Could this be because these individuals grew up with Andy and they just happened to be going to college at the same time as he was?

Toy Story had united many individuals that day, despite the fact that none of them knew each other. Kiersten’s mashup was successful because it told a story much deeper than what was being portrayed on the screen; how time flies by faster than we think and things that seem like just yesterday can

What the heck is Digital Storytelling?

At first I used to associate “storytelling” with just cracking open Little Red Riding Hood and reading it to a group of people. But now, after completing my Writing Through Media and Electronic Literature courses during my time at UMW, I can see that the term storytelling can mean much more than that. I believe storytelling is defined as any method used to convey a message to an audience. This is not solely limited to linear content such as a hardcover book that reads from left to right, but it can also include pictures, music, or even verbal discourse.

Now that we know that storytelling is not just about reading miles of sentences on a page, what could Digital Storytelling mean? I myself wouldn’t consider reading an ebook on a tablet digital storytelling, despite the fact that it’s stationed on a digital medium. Instead, I believe it is combining images, text, and other non-linear elements to narrate a story. Digital stories can include interactive content as well as visual effects to liven the presentation. Using this method, each person’s story becomes more personalized. Digital stories could also be conveyed through artgames, which use video game controls to keep the reader (player) engaged. This works well with those that are visual/kinesthetic learners (such as myself) who would rather play the story than read it. A good example of this sort of game is called One Chance where you literally have one chance to set things right.

Storytelling isn’t the same as it was 100 years ago. We now have computers, video cameras, and digital tools to help make our stories more than just words on a page. Every person is different, so wouldn’t it make sense to tell our own stories in a way that is unique?