Unit 1 Summary! First Part of Bootcamp Complete.

The first part of Unit 1 consists of thinking about ‘What Is Art?’, a very broad subject with many aspects to discuss! I really enjoyed this part of the unit as it really opened up my mind to different ideas. To read my blog about what is art, please have a read and click here.

My First Daily Create

For my first daily create, I chose the first one I saw on the ds106 Twitter feed to take on the challenge of the most recent task. You can read about how my Daily Create went and the results I got here.

Here are the links to my other social networking pages and my About page:

YouTube

SoundCloud

Twitter

Flickr

I sent a tweet out to ds106 to introduce myself to the course and I am now waiting on my response!

Reflection of Unit 1

Having now completed Unit 1 of ds106 I now have a much greater understanding of the course and how it is going to benefit me. What I found hard and challenging about this Unit was being given such a broad subject of ‘What Is Art?’. There are so many opinions on what art is that it is hard to narrow this down to one definition, but after listening to the videos and what others had to say about it, I developed an understanding that has allowed me to accept a number of different definitions for it which has extended my point of view on it. I learnt that once I really listen and put my mind to something, I can gain a good understanding of it and improve within these skills. I am excited to carry on with the course and continue to develop my skills, and to carry on challenging myself with the daily creates as well. Something I slightly dread about continuing the course is having to make sure that within every unit I must complete every single part of the summary which I can see will become quite a challenge to complete, but I think I am ready to take this on.

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Unit 3 Summary

What is Storytelling? A question asked by ds106 at the beginning of this unit. I wrote a blog on this, about my own thoughts and storytelling as well as digital storytelling, and also an insight into Kurt Vonnegut’s views. Click here.

Daily Creates

So far within Unit 3 I have completed 2 daily creates, in which I have discussed within my blog post that you can access here.

Past DS106 Stories

To start with, I looked through some work on the in[SPIRE] site. It took a while to find something that grabbed my attention, and then I came across a video by ‘Barefoot Brittany’ of a video about what makes her happy. I think this stood out to me because I knew it was going to be a heart felt video that had a positive outlook. I like the way she has pre written little cards that show what makes her happy, and she reveals one after another. It’s a nice effect as it is simple and clearly gets her message across. What really makes this special, is how personal it is. Nothing else matters in this video apart from what makes Brittany happy, including parts of her life such as family, but then also parts to do with sport and interests. She touches on the main things that clearly stand out to her in her life, which of course, is special to her as a person. What makes this a digital story, is the way she has digitally videoed it but included the use of written work as well, on her cue cards. What could have improved the video, would be some music behind it to really bring out the mood of the video and to make it a little more enjoyable to watch, this would have expanded the media she used even further making this even more of a digital story. This story isn’t part of a larger story, it is definitely one just on its own that doesn’t need anything extra to add. It is fine just the way it is.

I then looked at a completely different piece of work, a final project from Spring 2013 by Lara Hampson. She created a trailer based on curious george, but put a slight twist on this by having the speech of the rise of the planet of the apes film behind it. This was clever as it completely changed the story of curious george, a cheerful children’s film, into a film about an aggressive monkey. I really like this as it completely changes the story but it works really well. This makes it unique in the way it gives it a new meaning to what we are actually seeing on the screen. She has used a mixture of video and sound to create her story, making this a digital story by using different forms of media.

These pieces of work definitely gave me an insight into what digital storytelling is, and that there is no specific way in which to create a digital story, it can be anything you want it to be.

Commenting

By using the ds106 random post picker, I came across a post describing a girls journey through her love for running. She went on to describe how she will continue to improve during 2015 but also posted a video of a run she did in an amazingly beautiful place. It really made me appreciate the way these things are organised, but not only professional runners, but those who just enjoy it for a hobby as well. It looked like great fun, and the post itself was really inspiring. It was very influential in the way that I should think to myself about what I did in 2014 that was life changing in some way and potentially write my own blog post about something such as that. But it has also inspired me to look into possibly starting training and to get involved in such activities. My work has only been similar in the way I have also used media such as video along with my posts, but different in the way she made it personal. I haven’t really done any posts yet that are just personal to myself and nothing else, which could be something to look into.

Unit Three

Unit 3 has been very useful in the way I have a much clearer idea of digital storytelling which has made me a lot more confident about moving on within ds106. The Daily Creates are becoming more of a routine where I feel more motivated to get them done, which is keeping me busy. I feel ready to keep moving on through the course and I am looking forward to it!

Unit 2 Summary

Image

Customising My Blog

After looking through the different sections in the Appearance tab, I experimented with the options of personalising my blog to make it more about me! To begin with I found a theme that would allow me to easily adjust the image on the top of the page, I chose to put up a sun and mood design which I really like. I love the style of it including the colours and shapes involved which represents what style I like. To begin with it took a while to find a theme that positioned the image in the correct place on the page, it was easy to upload an image but to freely move it around was proven a lot more difficult. But in the end I managed to find one that made this challenge a whole lot easier!

As well as including images onto my blog I also added different widgets that will allow viewers to easily look at my other social media sites such as Twitter and Instagram. I use these social media networks the most out of all of the various ones meaning that there will always be new posts regularly being updated. This also allows viewers to learn more about my personality and will generally just link my blog to my life and make it more personal. This will just connect me further to those across social networks, potentially improving my work. Originally I could not work out how to connect these widgets to my social networking accounts but with a bit of research I managed to work out how to get the right Widget Id with the help of the WordPress help centre and some online help forums for working through WordPress.

In terms of having my blog reflect on my personality, it does to an extent where I have used a design that reflects my style, of simplicity with something loud that gives the page a bit of life, which is how I like it! I would like to be able to learn how to change the whole background and not just the header, but I am yet to develop on this to continue improving the design of my blog, but for now, I like the use of the header by itself.

Say it Like the Peanut Butter

An assignment during Unit 2 set to create an animated GIF from a film. This wasn’t too much of a difficult task, as there are many ways on the internet to create these, but here is my blog post that describes my process. Storytelling GIF

Daily Create

During Unit 2 I created one of my favourite daily creates. It was to describe something you love. I think that is a great topic to be given a task on, what’s better than thinking about something you personally love? Click here to view my daily create!

CyberInfrastructure

DS106 Experience

For me, ds106 seems to be going quite smoothly and everything is going to plan so far! The only aspect of ds106 that I am struggling with, is keeping up with the daily creates as well as watching particularly long videos in which I have to analyse. These videos that don’t exactly meet my interests, can become very boring in some sense which makes it hard to keep motivation. Hopefully, as I develop through ds106, there will be subjects that take my fancy a little bit more. When it comes to daily creates, I am just going to have to make more of an effort to keep on top of them, as at the end of the day, they don’t take long and I can learn from them! Which will have a positive impact on me throughout the course.

Bootcamp has had a fantastic impact on me with the course so far. Especially when it comes to preparing myself for the rest of the Units. I now feel that I know what to expect and am ready to keep on going.