Posted on February 17, 2018
Hello everyone! Today am I going to introduce you to cypherpunk106, who is my character. They’re pretty cool, so I’m excited to introduce you to them.
I actually somewhat chose cypherpunk106’s archetype way way back and wrote a post about it here. To remind y’all, I chose the axpert archetype. Axpert is a combination of the Archivist and Expert archetypes. An axpert has the characteristics of the Archivist as they collect/hoard technology and the characteristics of the expert as they proficiently use the tech they hoard. In essence, an axpert is very skilled and can masterfully use older technology.
My character likes to be anonymous and goes by cypherpunk106 usually. cypherpunk106 likes to be security conscious, so you’ll never see them use their name on an open channel (or any channel for that matter).
Some other personality traits of cypherpunk106 includes:
- Nostalgia for the good old days
- Biting sarcasm
- Overuse of the word “kid”
- Slightly masochistic
- Prefers to spend time alone
- Can be relentlessly moody
- Plays off depressing backstory™️ with self deprecating humor
cypherpunk106 has a somewhat of a weird past. Throughout cypherpunk106’s life, they lost people close to them. This loss didn’t always mean death, sometimes people close to cypherpunk106 went crazy or stopped talking to cypherpunk106. This series of losses lead cypherpunk106 to grow detached emotionally from most people. That being said, cypherpunk106 can be fiercely loyal to people who support them.
On a happier note, cypherpunk106 grew up on reruns of 90’s shows like “Legends of the Hidden Temple” and “Boy Meets World”. The environment portrayed in these shows lead cypherpunk106 to grow attached to the 90’s. This obsession explains cypherpunk106’s love for the late 90’s band, The Strokes. In the 90’s, cypherpunk106 finds their ideal world even though deep down they know it was just as screwy as it today is.
The assignment I chose to continue demonstrating who cypherpunk106 is the “All Those Books” assignment. I chose this assignment because it appealed to my creative side and allowed me to mess around more in Final Cut Pro. Below is my result.
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) February 17, 2018
Behind the Process
For the “All Those Books” Assignment I had to make the ideal work space for cypherpunk106. I was tasked with filling the space with items that cypherpunk106 would like. After some brainstorming and looking at some inspiration, I came up with the following items to put in cypherpunk106’s room.
- Stack of TVs with 90’s shows on
- iMac G3
- The Strokes poster
- Bookshelf with books
- Speaker stacks
I decided to do a video instead of an image just so I could make the shows on the TV move. With my ideas ready, I went to Final Cut Pro and worked my magic. My magic being compounding the *hell* out of my clips, transforming, adding music and all around tomfoolery. I do have to say that this was quite fun, even though it took me a while.
One difficult thing about this assignment was finding images that worked with the perspective. I could not find a good wooden desk that was also transparent for a long time. I really had to dive deep in the inter-webs for good images. In fact, something I want to improve is finding a better speaker image. I could not for the life of me find a transparent speaker image that was flat on the desk. IT KILLED ME. Looking back, I probably could have sucked it up and just found an image and then made it transparent. But, I am lazy so I did not.
Something I learned through this assignment was the *amazing* value of the compound clip feature in Final Cut Pro. Genuinely, I owe this project to that feature. Having the ability to simplify my timeline and go back and adjust was tremendous. Guys, I think I am in love with Final Cut Pro.
In this assignment, I found it easy to download and insert my audio. Of course, I went with “Between Love and Hate” by The Strokes. I also found it easy to add some room tone to the audio. Fortunately, Final Cut Pro has really great audio effects that I was able to spice up the music with.
Overall, I think I did well on this assignment. I liked that I was able to search around the Internet for images/objects that I feel represent cypherpunk106. If I had a choice, I would definitely do this again. If I did it again, I wouldn’t make it a video but a 360 photo. I think that a 360 photo would be a little more interactive.
Well, that is it for now folks. I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 11, 2018
Hello everyone! So this is it for Week 4. Despite the lighter workload, I still struggled this week to keep up. Below I am going to give you a quick overview of the work I did and analyze it a little bit.
To start off the week, I created a Hot Pocket meme for my Daily Create. I am a meme master, so needless to say, I got into this. I started by finding a Hot Pocket meme and then getting rid of their text/memeage. I had an idea for what I wanted to put inside my hotpocket. I was inspired by Kevin Hodgson’s tweet about dead hyperlinks. I was also further inspired by the hundreds of broken images on my own domain (I deleted things from my media library, I was dumb). I then found the broken image, the uncategorized and yum pictures and added them to my meme. After I added the text (font was close to real Hot Pockets packaging) with a spicy drop shadow.
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) February 7, 2018
The next Daily Create I did was to color an image from the Europeana Coloring Book. I decided to do this digitally (I mean it is *digital* storytelling). I did my editing through Photoshop and used the paint bucket, brush and a myriad of selection tools to color my image. When I was done, I tweeted it and used the #ColorOurCollections hashtag. The Europeana twitter actually retweeted me and replied that they thought mine was pretty (*blushes*). It is always nice to get recognized for your work, even if it only took you 15 minutes.
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) February 10, 2018
So pretty! 🖍️🎨🖼️
— Europeana (@Europeanaeu) February 10, 2018
My first assignment I did this week was to write a blog post in which I share what I learned through the Tips page, analyze an Abandoned America album and complete a Photoblitz. This assignment was deceivingly large so I broke it up into three sections. An annoying issue I keep running into with this post is inserting my Instagram images. I have tried using the Insert From URL function, auto embed and actually pasting the embed code in the Text tab. No matter what I do, I keep getting this glitch (see below). I decided to cut my losses and upload my images to Flickr. Not like that’s a loss, since Flickr can definitely handle my high quality images better than Instagram can.
My next assignment was to take a before/after photo of a person, place, or thing that has survived the apocalypse. After taking the photos I was supposed to use Juxtapose to show the difference between my two photos. One of the criteria of this assignment was to not rely too heavily on Photoshop. I, of course, being a badass ignored this. To call myself out here, I think that if I could go back and do this assignment again, I would. I really did a sloppy job editing my images. Also, because I decided to be a rule breaker and use an old photo of mine, I really missed an opportunity to try out more of my photography. To roast myself, I was pretty lazy in this post.
Also, this week I tried to do this typography assignment. I am not even kidding when I say I spent about an hour and a half trying to do this. I have decided that TYPOGRAPHY IMAGES AREN’T POSSIBLE. I watched so many Photoshop tutorials, but I could not make it work. So, I had to stop myself from wasting another hour on it and instead do the following assignment.
Instead of wasting more time on the typography assignment, I decided to do this billboard assignment instead. This was a fun post to make as it allowed me to be creative and insert a narrative into an object that I don’t normally get to do that with. One thing that annoys me a little about this post is how low quality my featured image is. For some weird reason, my site *butchered* the quality of the image. When I have the time, I will try and diagnose that. I have a sneaking suspicion that it is because of JetPack’s image quality controls (unconfirmed, but will investigate).
The last assignment I did was to watch “La Jetée” and “Mad Max”. I really enjoyed these movies (except for Mel Gibson). I think that this is the work I am proud of this week as I really analyzed the techniques in both movies. I also demonstrated to my reader what I was talking about through my use of screenshots. I also have to say that I am kind of obsessed with the gif I made.
This week I have been able to read a couple of my classmates posts. I really want to shout them out because their work is impressive to say in the least.
The first post I really recommend reading is Lauren Sargent’s Tips/Tricks post. It was really cool to read her thoughts on the Abandoned America church album she analyzed. It was also fascinating to read her behind the scenes of her Photo Blitz. Seeing the images is one thing, but hearing the process and thoughts that go into the photos is really revealing.
One of my classmate’s assignments that I lowkey fell in love with this week is Katie’s Brady Bunch goes Apocalyptic post. I am not even kidding when I say that I am obsessed with this post. She used this amazing 3D effect to really draw in her viewer. Katie’s post was super creative and just really fun.
Another great work one of my classmates produced, was Joshua Jenkins’ “La Jetée” and “The Road” post. Joshua’s analysis of “La Jetée” was superb. I especially love how he connected the museum to the protagonists’ death. This actually made me re-analyze that part of the movie and come to the conclusion that Chris Marker, the director, was showing us how the protagonist is like the preserved animals. Definitely give his analysis a read as it is very thought provoking.
This week has been a lot for me, but it meant discussing photography (one of my favorite things to discuss). This week gave me an opportunity to analyze framing, lighting and contrast. All of these discussions I rarely get to have. Something I am looking forward to is audio week next week. This week at my job I had to show someone how to produce and edit audio. I haven’t done it in a couple of months, so it kind of sparked that drive in me again.
This week Martha asked us:
Do you think an animated GIF can be considered a story? Why or why not? It would be great to include some examples to illustrate your thoughts.
Personally, I think that gifs cannot be considered a story. I think that gifs show a sliver of a story. A story is recounting events, connected with dialogue and can (not always) follow a structure (linear or causal). Thus, a gif’s format is not conducive to a story. It isn’t long enough to show events, connect those events and have a structure. I think that the main thing gifs are missing is context. In the gif below, we can see a man shocked. But why is he shocked? What are his traits (physical, moral, ethical)? Are we at the inciting incident or the climax?
In essence, I think one gif is not a story as it doesn’t meet the criteria for a story. However, a series of gifs together…now that can be a story.
Well, that is it for now folks. I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 11, 2018
Hello everybody! Today’s post is going to be split into two different sections as I watched two different movies for my assignments. If you don’t like spoilers I would suggest not reading on further.
For the first part of this post, I am going to talk about the movie “La Jetée” by Chris Marker.
Chris Marker used different styles of framing to convey the way the apocalypse feels throughout “La Jetée”. When showing us what the apocalypse looks like in Paris, he starts with a simple cityscape view. Then almost like zooming in, he shows us specific buildings that have been destroyed. Framing these zoomed in pictures on the ruins, draws the viewer’s attention to the destruction that has racked Paris.
Moreover, the photographer uses heavy shadows to frame the image and focus the attention on the subject. In the photo below, the background is mainly black. This simplifies the image so one cannot help but analyze the man in the funny glasses. Chris Marker’s use of shadows to frame throughout the movie gives the underground galleries a dark and mysterious feel. This gloomy atmosphere in the movie defines the way that Chris Marker imagines the apocalypse.
Furthermore, throughout this movie I noted the tips and techniques we discussed that Chris Marker also employs.
Chris Marker likes to change the viewer’s perspective by shooting up from below. He especially likes to employ this technique when the warden character and the prisoner are interacting. This leads to the feeling of a power imbalance and the insecurity that stems from that.
Additionally, Chris Marker uses the depth of field tip. This can be seen in the screenshot below with the man in background blurry while the crazy man in focus. With the focus on the crazy man, the viewer can almost feel his pain.
In general, Chris Marker also deploys heavy subject contrast between the dream like memories and the harsh cold tunnels. Through this technique, the viewer can feel the sharp contrast that the main character goes through every time he time travels.
Chris Marker also uses foreground and background techniques. In the photo below, the foreground of the image (the birds) is in focus whereas the man and the woman are not. Strangely, through the focus on the birds we choose to concentrate on the blurry man and woman.
In addition to foreground techniques, Chris Marker uses lighting and shadows to add mysterious vibes to his photos. When the main character travels to the future, Chris Marker highlights the future people’s strangeness with intense lighting and shadows.
As previously mentioned, Chris Marker frames each shot to really convey emotion to the viewer. Whether Chris Marker is shooting up from below or using light to add drama to his subject, the viewer feels what the subject is feeling. As a viewer, I found each of Chris Marker’s images really moving. Through his images, I felt immersed into the world of “La Jetée”. I felt what the characters felt. However, because of Chris Marker’s highly framed and focused images everything did feel a little surreal. The shadows sometimes obscured the background and the little details I wanted to pick up on. Of course, this was done purposefully. But, the intense concentration on the subject led me to also feel distanced from the movie as the images were almost overly dramatic. In general, I missed the feeling of reality in some of the underground gallery shots.
What resonated with me about “La Jetée” was that love can be unconventional and still work. In the movie, the main character discusses how the woman accepts his strange appearances and disappearances. Despite that oddity, she still falls in love with him. The two of them shared such a deep connection that even though he sometimes wordlessly leaves and returns, she still loved him.
Some other aspects of the movie that worked well was the heart beat noise Chris Marker would insert. This sound got me very stressed and really captured my attention. Also, the costumes, especially the weird glasses they wore in the underground galleries, worked well. These glasses and the weird headgear of the future people made it easy to separate the trips to the past, present and future. Also, I loved Chris Marker’s break from images to film. When he included the video of the woman in bed, I actually got really scared. The change from photos to video was quite jarring. This aspect was done well, but I feel like as a viewer I could have been eased into it more.
In general, the author really drew me in through his use of framing and characters. At the end of the movie, you are almost rooting for the man and woman to somehow have a happy life. All of these features come together to form a really enjoyable film. Even though at times “La Jetée” reminded me of Flipagram, I did enjoy it as it used photos to create a narrative and an immersive experience.
The second film I decided to watch was “Mad Max” by George Miller.
*Before reading more, Mel Gibson is a dueche here is why*
Throughout “Mad Max” I paid close attention to how the scenes were shot and added certain elements to the film. In terms of forwarding the narrative, George Miller would shoot scenes that included Mad Max’s family very up close. With this extra focus on Max and his family, the viewer could see how he interacts with them. This helped forward the narrative and plot line for later (no spoilers).
Additionally, George Miller used an up from below perspective multiple times in the film to show when the power has shifted or is imbalanced. This can be seen when Max is trying to quit his job, but his boss won’t let him. Through the camera angles we can see how his boss still has power over Max and won’t let him go.
Concerning how the scenes draw me in as a viewer, there were multiple times that George Miller used interesting angles to capture my attention. One example is when Goose is riding his motorcycle and we get a view from his motorcycle dash. This is an interesting angle as we feel like we are driving the motorcycle.
Also, George Miller masterfully used camera work to create empathy or disgust for the characters. He mainly used the Rule of Thirds to help the viewer focus on specific people or subjects to evoke these feelings. An example of this includes the disgust one feels when the nomads beat up the couple and sexually assault them. Moreover, empathy can be felt when when George Miller uses the Rule of Thirds to focus on Goose’s burned hand.
George Miller is also amazing at conveying emotion through his choice of framing. A wonderful example of how George Miller uses framing to convey emotion is through Jessie and Sprog’s death. After they are hit with a motorcycle, George Miller decided to focus on the shoe and ball. The shoe focus is on the left and then George Miller uses depth of field on the right to show the nomads leaving. This framing leads to serious emotions, specifically heartache, as you watch the ball bounce down the road.
This use of framing to convey emotion continues as depth of field is used to draw attention to Max collapsing near his dead son and very injured wife.
As part of the watching, I was tasked to choose one very short clip from “Mad Max” that I think worked particularly well and to make a GIF out of it.
The scene I chose from “Mad Max” was when Toecutter drags Johnny into the water at the beach. Toecutter then thrusts a shotgun into Johnny’s mouth and reminds him to keep his mouth shut. This whole action is really violent and leads to a lot of tension. Weirdly, right after this Toecutter drops the shotgun and throws an arm around Johnny in almost a fatherly way. I decided to focus on the moment that Toecutter has his arm around Johnny is guiding them into the sun. This shot evokes a range of emotion including anxiety and also tenderness. The lighting in this moment is also amazing as the setting sun adds to the mood of it. I think this scene is just like a mood swing, which is why I find it kind of thrilling and decided to make it into a gif.
To make this gif I used QuickTime screen recording and then went to ezgif to make my gif. In ezgif I selected my time and cropped the gif to not include the black of the screen. I found this particularly easy as I have made hundreds of gifs. I did decide not to use Photoshop, however, as I felt that the dithering through it would have been worse. One thing I could improve is to try and make the gif loop. However, I think that may be a little extra.
Overall, I really liked “Mad Max”. I think what resonated with me about this movie is the fall of a man. Throughout this movie we see Max’s devolution. He starts as a cop, who just enforces the law, and ends as a man who basically lives above it. In the end, Max becomes the thing he used to fight. Likewise, George Miller did an excellent job of drawing me in through the characters and the emotions that they expressed. On the other hand, I feel like what didn’t work well in the story is the lack of explanation for why the world was the way it was. I feel like adding this into the story would give more meaning behind the characters’ actions (especially the nomads). Besides that, I really enjoyed “Mad Max” because it created stimulating character arcs and a detailed sense of place.
Thanks everyone for reading, I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 10, 2018
For my latest assignment, I had to reconstruct an image of a billboard by photo editing the image. I decided to give my billboard a zombie apocalypse feel.
Below is my finished masterpiece (P.S. for some reason the quality of it is getting *butchered* on my front end. So click on the image to see the higher quality version on Flickr.)
Behind the Process
I began this assignment by looking at abandoned billboards. By doing this, I did not have to work too hard to get the aesthetic I wanted. I found this amazing billboard and absolutely loved its texture and the surrounding electrical wires.
After I found my perfect billboard, I had to decide what text to put onto it. I was inspired by the city limit and population signs in my hometown.
Furthermore, I needed a fake town name to put on my billboard. I went to this city name generator and got the town name of Berkton. I then decided I wanted a graffiti font. After searching around for a while, I found one and downloaded it. Having my photo and font, I then went into Photoshop. I started by adjusting the curves to make it a little darker than the original. I then inserted my “Berkton City Limits. Population. Humans: 2. Zombies: 156” text. I had to skew the text a little as it was not on the right plane. I had to also add a drop shadow to make the red more visible. Moreover, I had to adjust the kerning between some of the letters as some letters were illegible. Lastly, I edited the nearby train stop sign to say Berkton.
Something I learned from this assignment is how to change the kerning between letters. The last few years I have absolutely hated Photoshop because it is almost impossible to find anything in there unless you know exactly where to look. So when I wanted to change the letter spacing in my image, I was completely lost. After a bit of googling, I found out what kerning is and how to change it. Needless to say, Google is my best friend whenever I use Photoshop.
In this assignment, I found it easy to insert almost a narrative into the photo. I attempted to do this through the “Humans: 2” part of my billboard. Having two humans left in a town evokes almost an Adam and Eve scenario. It lends to the story of two people left against an ever growing zombie population. I think that the viewer can’t help but to think of the lives of the survivors and how they navigate a world dominated by zombies.
Something I feel I did well was paying attention to the little details. In order to make my photo complete, I decided to change the train stop sign to say “Berkton” as well. Doing this almost makes the town feel real. It turns a zombie apocalyptic town from a distant thought or a dream into reality. Through this attention to detail, the viewer can feel immersed in the environment.
Furthermore, something I want to improve is my creativity. I feel I could have done more with this assignment maybe add some dark clouds or a zombie. However, I also am conflicted with my desire for simplicity. I feel that if I keep the message simple, it will be easier for my viewer to understand it. Thus, I want to improve finding the balance between simplicity and complexity in my photos.
I liked the openness of this assignment. The prompt simply says “Reconstruct an image of a billboard by photo editing the image. Replace the heads of people or objects with photos of your friends and family.” Because I am always looking for loopholes, I am assuming that my family and friends are dead because of the zombie apocalypse. Also, the family friendly part? Well, I think that any surviving families that wonder near this town would *love* to know that there are 156 zombies and approximately 2 humans. Because this prompt is so open ended, I feel it was easy to insert my narrative and creativity into the assignment.
Overall, I chose this assignment because it allowed me to insert my ideas and stories into an everyday object, the billboard. Hopefully you enjoyed my billboard and my silly behind the process.
That’s it for now (not really I’m writing all my posts today). I’ll catch you on the flipside (again, in like two hours tops I’ll have another post up).
Posted on February 10, 2018
Hello everyone! My first assignment for this week was to take a before and after picture of a person, place, or thing that has survived the apocalypse. Being me, I decided to ignore the instruction to not rely on Photoshop. I believe that Photoshop is a valuable tool that demonstrates where the art of photography is headed.
Behind the Process
I started this assignment by downloading a photo of Monticello I took recently. I think Monticello is a good place to show it before and after the apocalypse as it evokes a lot of emotion. These emotions include patriotism (it is Thomas Jefferson’s house after all) and despair as the after photo demonstrates its abandonment. After downloading the photo, I brought it into Photoshop where I added the ivy, dead grass and trees. I think it was a challenge to find good images to insert. It was a challenge as these graphics had to be transparent and evoke an eerie feeling. I also played with the curves and vibrancy of the photo. This really made it set itself apart from the bright, happy Monticello in the before.
The difficult part of this assignment was working with the layers in Photoshop. I always struggle with duplicating them and making sure that they are in the right order. So, the hard part was dragging the layers around to make sure that things were arranged correctly.
Something I learned from this assignment was that when you place a graphic inside your image you need to rasterize it. I had no idea what rasterizing was. After a quick Google search, I came across this article that explained what rasterizing is. Rasterizing is when a Photoshop layer is converted from a vector layer to pixels. Vectors are great because they maintain clarity when you enlarge them, but pixels are needed to do *artsy* things. So I learned that in order to mess with the graphics I found, I need to convert them to pixels so I could edit them.
In this assignment, I found it easy to create a sense of place. Monticello is a place that most people are familiar with. Because of this, I think it was easy to turn it into an apocalyptic scene that is rooted in its past. Moreover, something I think I did well was adjusting the brightness and contrast of the after photo. Changing these via curves really rounded out the image and gave it a dark vibe.
One thing I want to improve was darkening the sky. I attempted to use the paint brush to do this, but it turned out sloppy. There were some areas of blue that I just could not get rid off no matter how hard I tried.
I chose this assignment because it allowed me to transform an image to be something completely different. I really enjoyed that aspect of this assignment as it allowed me to be creative in a different way than usual. This was a fun assignment, that if given a choice, I would definitely do again.
Well, that is it for now. I’ll catch you on the flipside folks.
Posted on February 9, 2018
Hello everyone! Today I am going to share with you a lot of different things. So strap in and get cozy, cause boi is this post gonna be long.
To begin I am going to share what I learned through reading the Tips page. The first tip that I found especially useful was to find different and unique points of view.
When we imagine photographers, we think of them standing upright and just pointing and shooting.
In reality, photographers *really* got to get into it stance wise to get that different perspective.
So this tip really made reconsider how I have to interact physically with photography. Moreover, the Tips page pushed me to learn what my lenses do. I’m going to be honest. I am the person who has a DSLR and literally does not know how to use it. Fortunately, I work with Nigel (the guest in this weeks video) and was able to pick his brain/coerce him to explain things to me. No joke, Nigel helped me understand what my lenses do and what aperture, shutter speed and ISO are. Without this tip/prompt, I do not think I would have spent time to learn about my camera.
The next step of our assignment was to go to on Abandoned America and choose a gallery to analyze. I decided to look at the St. Bonaventure Roman Catholic Church in Philadelphia.
The photographer, Matthew Christopher, did an amazing job capturing the abandonment and pure vacancy of this church.
Some of the tips/techniques I identified in the photographer’s images includes perspective and light work. In terms of perspective, Matthew Christopher wonderfully shot up from below to make the church seem looming and dominating.
Moreover, the photographer really used light to give the church almost a hopeful view. This work with light strays from the theme of abandonment that the photographer used throughout the album.
Additionally, Matthew used particular tips/techniques to capture a sense of abandonment, loss or desolation. In the photo below, Matthew changed perspective and gives the viewer a side angle of the church. This highlights the abandonment because it gives us a clear view of how the church has fallen apart.
Matthew also uses contrast to distinguish the outside, which is full of light, from the interior destruction. This contrast immediately draws ones eye to the glaring differences between the exterior and interior. Acknowledging these differences really makes one focus on the abandonment of the church.
I also believe that the photographer emphasizes loss as the pews in the image below continue onto the outside. You can almost imagine the people who used to sit in those pews and no longer do.
Furthermore, Matthew uses depth of field to show that the church, and its destruction, continues beyond view. This provides a feeling of loss and uncertainty to the viewer.
One can also tell that the photographer uses the Rule of Thirds in their photos. In the photos below, the Rule of Thirds is used to make the viewer focus on the chair/piano. Specifically the focus is on the emptiness of them. Focusing on the emptiness of objects that are usually lively gives one a feeling of loss or death.
Additionally, the photographer uses high subject contrast in his photos. The difference between ornate to destruction leads to an eerie feeling.
Personally, I am not a fan of this type of photography. Thus, it does not really jive with my vision of the apocalypse or the post-apocalyptic world. I’m more into cyberpunk which has destruction, but destruction of more modern items. These photos feel almost too realistic because I’ve seen or been inside buildings like these in real life. I think it’s overwhelming for me to see everyday sites, like a church, in disrepair and abandoned. Maybe that is why I prefer cyberpunk because I don’t like how real the photographer’s work is. Also, this church reminds me of the Sense8 church and that’s a lil freaky.
The last step of this assignment was to complete a Photo Blitz. The seven prompts I got were as follows:
- Take a picture that represents quickness or motion.
- Glasses help many folks bring the world into focus each day.
- Where would be without tools? Take a photo of your most valued (non technology) tool.
- Take a photo in which a mirror is a major element.
- Make a creative photo of some sort of boundary.
- Make a photograph of the front of a building.
- Take a photo dominated by a single color.
With those seven prompts and 20 minutes in mind, I went out and shot everything. I did shoot all of my photos with an apocalyptic theme in mind. When I was done, I did some editing (very minimal, some exceptions) to freshen them up and give them a new look.
Behind the Process
The most difficult thing about this assignment chunk was forcing myself to do the Photo Blitz. I really hate being rushed, so having 20 minutes to do this increased my anxiety hella. I managed to do it though, so I am proud. The Photo Blitz made me learn to sometimes accept that you are not going to get the shot you want. For my motion task, I was going to try and take a photo of birds. However, birds hate me and flew away too fast. All that bird attempt got me was a weird candid my friend took of me from her dorm window.
What I found easy about this assignment block was analyzing Matthew Christopher’s photos. Seeing someone use the techniques we read about was easy and beneficial. It was really simple to pick up on some of the techniques and internalize them. Hopefully, you can see me use some of the techniques in my Photo Blitz’s photos.
Something I think I did well was finding interesting things and places to shoot for my Photo Blitz. I am really proud that I remembered the wall near the library that has the graffiti. Hopefully, this photo reminds you of the Berlin Wall specifically the type of graffiti it had before its fall. I also think that I had dynamic props that really made my photos pop. For example, the lighter photo can’t help but be interesting because us as humans love fire.
On the other hand, the thing I want to improve is one of my Photo Blitz photos. My glasses picture is out of focus and just kind of bad in general. If I could go back, I would definitely spend more time on this shot and make sure everything was copacetic before moving on.
I really liked this assignment in general. I particularly liked looking at the Abandoned America album because it inspired me. Analyzing the Abandoned America album also gave me an opportunity to see actual photographers use the techniques we read about. Moreover, I really liked the challenge of the Photo Blitz. It was hard, but it was the type of hard that makes it worth it in the end. If I had a choice, I would do the Photo Blitz again because it was a terrifying, fun and a challenging task.
That’s it for now folk, I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 4, 2018
Hello everyone! This week has been crazy hectic. I feel like I haven’t stopped doing assignments! So I am going to run through my assignments and talk about them. I have linked to them if you want to read more.
We started off the week by doing our Daily Create. In this assignment we had to tell a 280 character story of aliens invading our planet. I decided to be funny and lighthearted with my tweet. I was partially inspired by the “No, David!” books that always have a funny twist at the end.
“The aliens ate my homework!” Jimmy declared. Mrs. Moore sighed, ignoring his silly response. “Aliens? Aliens don’t exist Jimmy.” But they did, and Jimmy had seen them land in their UFOs. Initially they ate homework, but now they eat teachers. Poor Mrs. Moore. #tdc2213 #ds106 pic.twitter.com/LjR6WTyh1t
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) January 30, 2018
The second Daily Create we did this week was about National Backwards Day. We were tasked with taking a picture that illustrates the idea of “backwards”. I decided to point out the irony and backwardness of National Backwards Day itself. I think this is slightly a cop-out, but I did stick to the assignment by demonstrating something that is backwards.
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) January 31, 2018
The third Daily Create I did this week was create a video for a surreal compliment. The compliment that I got was “Your brother’s chicken coop is as abundant as the home port of the U.S. Navy’s Sixth Fleet.” I used various videos and audio clips to make this video. I also used a title and converted a gif into frames to keep the transparency.
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) February 1, 2018
This week I also finalized my decision to read “Oryx and Crake” by Margaret Atwood. I’ve read a couple chapters already and I’m dying to know more about this story.
I’m going to read “Oryx and Crake” by Margaret Atwood. I’ve read a couple chapters already and I’m dying to know more about this story. The image is that of a pigoon which are genetically modified pigs. Pigoons play a major role in "Oryx and Crake" #bookchoice #thend106 #ds106 pic.twitter.com/W1JCZH3pYT
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) January 31, 2018
Moreover, we were tasked with reading two short stories this week. After doing these readings, I reflected on what I gleaned from them. The two short stories I read was “The Screwfly Solution” and “Finis”. I really liked “The Screwfly Solution” and highly recommend it. You can read my full and complete thoughts in my post.
We had a lot of assignments this week. The first assignment I did was to write an alternative ending to “The Screwfly Solution” by Raccoona Sheldon. It’s a little dark and murder-y, but I have to say it’s pretty good. I think that this is the work I am most proud of. I think that I was able to add more pizazz and flare to the ending. Yes, the ending I wrote was a bit more tragic. However, I think that my ending rightly gave Anne a badass exit. You can give it a read here.
The next assignment I did was Products Of The Apocalypse assignment. I decided to write about how the SHEWEE (an amazing product honestly) would help me survive the apocalypse. I even designed a nice little photo to go with the review. One thing I wish I did better on this assignment was the image I made to accompany my photo. The emojis are all at different heights and the OCD in me is too strong (but the laziness in me wins out). You can read my review and process here.
Another assignment I did was write the Apocalypse Terms of Service. This was a fun assignment as I was able to write something official(ish), but also funny. I think I was also able to add a bit of story into my Terms of Service so it is a little bit more exciting than the normal TOS we read.
The last assignment I did this week was write an apocalypse inspired haiku. Hilariously, this is the shortest assignment and yet it gave me a lot of trouble. However, I am proud of this assignment because I overcame my inability to count syllables and was able to create a pretty good haiku.
Some other little things I did this week was work on my site. Last week I mentioned how I was creating categories. So this week I was playing around with placing those in my menu and navigation widget. In general, I’ve been combining and adjusting them so that my users can find my work easier.
This week I was also able to read some work my classmates have been posting. I have to say that everyone in the class is doing really well. We are all using different skills and creative approaches to assignments, so reading all of them is just fascinating. One post that I really enjoyed was from Jillian. Jillian’s post was about their reflection on the short stories they read this week. Jillian also read the story “Finis” and we both agreed that the female character was somewhat annoyingly fragile. It was also nice to read that someone else has the same thoughts on the lovey-dovey ending the author wrote. You can give Jillian’s post a read here.
I was also able to read a post from Elizabeth’s website. I read her product review for the Freehawk Multifunctional Portable Outdoor Knife. Her review was amazing and really had a story aspect to it. I felt like I was reading an excerpt from a book and not a stand alone Amazon customer review! It really was an amazing review and it even made it on their official Customer Review page. You can read Elizabeth’s post here.
This week was a lot of writing for me. So it meant that I had to get into a writing and analyzing mindset in order to do well on this weeks work. I am glad that I was forced to have this mindset because I am not much of a writer myself. Having to step into it really broadened my horizons and made me channel my creativity differently.
If I could do this week over again, I would have tried to spread the work out a little. I ended up doing a lot of my posts on Saturday. This kind of put my creativity in a funk and made my head hurt a little. I think in the future I will try to force myself to start my work earlier and keep at it. Leaving everything last minute only caused more stress for me.
I am looking forward to photography week. Not that I don’t like writing, but writing a lot in a week really took it out of me. I know that we will obviously continue writing throughout this class, but I feel like it will be less intense. I am just excited to change it up a little and try out another medium for my creativity.
This week Martha asked us:
In the event of an apocalypse, do you think you’d be the kind of person to hoard your supplies (for yourself and your loved ones) or would you share them with those around you in need? Why or why not?
As someone who already hoards things, I think that this behavior would translate to the apocalypse. I think that in the apocalypse all rules and maybe even morals are off. So, I feel that hoarding my supplies for myself and loved ones is ethically fine in the apocalypse. I also think that a “survival of the fittest” situation fits in the apocalypse. Obviously I love my family and friends, so I am perfectly okay with hoarding supplies for them and ignoring the needy.
Well, that is my Week 3 everyone. I hope you enjoyed reading about my assignments and the various things I struggled and am proud of. I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 3, 2018
Here is my haiku:
A cold skyscraper destroy
betrayed by the cloud
Behind the Process
For this assignment we had to take a random Dailyshoot photograph and create a haiku using that image. I think that Dailyshoot is something DS106 sections of olde used to do. So, I decided to just Google Search “apocalypse” and choose a random image. I choose this image:
I then decided to look at the photo and write down any words that came to mind. I made the following list:
I then felt like I had enough inspiration to write my haiku. If anyone who is reading this knows me IRL, they know I am actually really bad at counting syllables. It’s one of those weird things I never really picked up well. So for me, actually counting syllables was the most difficult part of this assignment. However, after many minutes of clapping the syllables to myself, I was able to come up with my beautiful haiku.
Something I think I did well was giving the haiku a tense, somewhat mysterious vibe. I feel like this mood pushes people to read more into the subtext. I also think it helps that the haiku is apocalypse themed as well.
Moreover, something I want to improve is connecting all the lines together into more of a story. My haiku does have some of a story as one can assume the “cloud” refers to an apocalyptic weather disaster. However, I want *more*. I want it to draw people in and really tell them something.
This assignment also taught me a valuable lesson: to limit my ideas to a few words and lines. I struggled with this aspect a little, but I really did come to terms with it. Hopefully that can be seen in the end result.
As always (sorry to sound like a broken record), I found it easy to insert gifs into my post. I think I just have an affinity for gifs. I’m just able to search them out and find that diamond in the rough. Or maybe the gifs are looking for me.
Overall, I liked this assignment as it forced me to limit my thoughts and express my creativity in a short amount of space.
Well, that is it everyone. I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 3, 2018
For this assignment, I will be writing the Terms of Service for the apocalypse.
*clears throat* Let us begin.
Terms of Service-Intro
The following terms govern your access to our services including making your life hell, running from scary ghouls/zombies/people trying to kill you and flashbacks to the good old days. By using the Services you agree to be bound by these Terms.
Terms of Service-Cookies Policy
The Cookies Policy of the apocalypse is simple: if one finds cookies they must hoard them and not give them to the rest of the group. This will cause conflict that eventually leads to A) a member of your survivors’ group leaving or B) a member of your survivors’ group avoiding conflict but acting really weird towards you. In no situation will you share the cookies. Sharing cookies with your group leads to automatic dismissal from the apocalypse (re: death).
Terms of Service-Community Guidelines
The following terms apply to the individuals and the greater surviving group that those individuals abide in.
Firstly, the individual (user) will only have one person in the group that they know from pre-apocalypse times. This pre-apocalypse person can be a significant other, family member or friend from childhood. Everyone else in the group must be someone that they met in a weird situation like at a gas station while raiding for supplies or they were all caught in an elevator while the apocalypse began.
After a group of users has been formed, they must observe the following terms.
A group cannot have a harmonious relationship as the users must get on each others nerves. There must also be a repressed conflict that eventually comes to the surface and causes a horrific homicide. Additionally, there must be the following during a users apocalypse experience:
- discoveries e.g. your significant other does not love you,
- betrayals e.g. your significant other sacrifices your life for 2 ply toilet paper,
- and reversals e.g. realizing the strangers you were going to kill for their supplies are not strangers at all, it’s your cousin and old elementary school teacher.
Finally, at least two people must fall in love in the group. However, their relationship will be ended in a tragic way (i.e. death, betrayal, torture).
Terms of Service-Summary
Under no circumstances will a sense of normalcy be achieved for the users. The users must suffer through the apocalypse without being able to go back to the way things “used to be”.
The creators of the apocalypse would like to thank you for using our service. We would also like to say that there’s no point in trying to live through this (we commend your effort though).
If you agree to the Terms of Service, please comment:
“I agree to the terms of service.”
Behind the Process
I started this assignment by getting inspiration for what I should put in my Terms of Service. I searched Terms of Service templates and I came across this really helpful website. The difficult part of this assignment was trying to keep my language formal enough, but still keeping it light. I do mention death and homicide a bunch, but I think that mentioning these added to the apocalyptic flavor I was going for. I did find it easy to come up with examples for the aspects that I mentioned in the Terms of Service. E.g. betrayals- your significant other sacrifices your life for 2 ply toilet paper. Most of the examples I came up with were inspired by apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic movies, comics or books I have indulged in. I think I did a good job of breaking up my Terms of Service into sections. I think this not only helped me break the assignment up, but it also helped my readers fully experience my Terms of Service. Of course, making my Terms of Service easy to read is ironic since the point of the Terms of Service is for them to be almost illegible and undesirable to read. I really liked this assignment as it allowed me to create Terms of Service. This is most likely the only time I will do this seeing as you have to be a lawyer to make the Terms of Service. Creating the Terms of Service taught me to imagine myself as a person who frequently produces this type of content. Doing this allowed me to think about the user’s experience and the parts of their soul, I mean information, that I would own. In this assignment, I would like to improve, once again, my grammar and general formatting. I feel like I am good at writing the words itself, but failing at the grammatical side of it all.
Anyways, I hope you enjoyed my Terms of Service for the Apocalypse. I’ll catch you on the flipside.
Posted on February 3, 2018
Hello everybody! Today I chose a product that I think will help me survive the apocalypse. The product I selected is the SHEWEE. If you are unfamiliar with the SHEWEE, it is a device that helps women to stand to urinate without removing any clothing. It’s amazing.
I think that this product will help me during the apocalypse because I will be out in the woods a lot and probably really far from a bathroom. And if I do find a bathroom it won’t be clean so I can always use this and not have to touch the toilet seat.
Below is my Amazon review for this product. Because SHEWEE is a large company, they had to review my comment. I do not think it will make it up on their Customer Review Section (but we’ll see). So here’s the review and an image I made to go along with the review.
Behind the Process
One thing I found difficult about this assignment was deciding what product would help me during the apocalypse. Ironically, I was telling someone about a recent trip to West Virginia where we had no running water and how we all had to pee in the woods. That story inspired me to choose the SHEWEE for this assignment. After choosing the product, I found it easy to write a quick review for it. I also found it easy to make an accompanying photo for the review. I believe that the image is something I did well because it has a spooky forest, the product smack dab in the center and fun eye catching emojis. I learned in this assignment that some companies do review their comments section. I am surprised by this, especially since SHEWEE is a large company. I mean that’s a lot of comments to go through. Hopefully, my comment makes it up on their reviews section.
Well, that it for now folks. I’ll catch you on the flipside.
cypherpunk106: boldly tweeting about what no one else wants to tweet about. In this post, I'm talking about the SHEWEE and how it has helped me in the apocalypse 📺 #ds106 #theend106 #WritingAssignments2161https://t.co/5tn6Kmp8rF
— cypherpunk106 (@cypherpunk106) February 3, 2018
Hi there, thanks for the great write up! I'm pleased to tell you, your review made it onto @amazon 😊 We don't review the comments though, so I don't know what the issue is there?!
— Shewee & Peebol (@SheweeWC) February 6, 2018
SHEWEE tweeted me back with the most confusing reply ever. What 😂
And my customer review is up. Amazon & SHEWEE, y’all wild.