This is a recording of me playing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the koto with some few keys added below the melody line. I used not just simple and general chords like I, IV, V, but also tried applying borrowed chords into the piece as well. For example, the second chord I played was a V chord of the F major scale, whereas the piece started in C major. I also used chords from the A minor scale as well, which I thought I especially did a great job on, because although C major and A minor are closely related to each other (parallel scales), it is difficult to change a major key into a minor key within the space of only 12 measures. So, as a conclusion I think the most important thing I was able to do was to make the piece more interesting by adding chords, because that is the purpose of adding chords. By having chords supporting the melody line, they help you understand the tone of music and plus, it just simply sounds nicer with them.
My best speech was the persuasive speech because I think I was able to backup my opinions with many facts and also other’s opinion about the topic. I also had decent modulation during the speech. I felt like I was able to do well with volume and pace. Physically, I was able to maintain posture and even add some hand gestures in places.
I should improve on emphasis because if there is no emphasis in my speech, the speech will sound monotonous.
Choose another student’s video which appealed to you, embed it also and answer this question focussing on the key aspect that was appealing:
Another speech which was captivating was May’s persuasive speech because she used visual aids to help herself support her idea, and as a result I was persuaded to believe her statement. It was also simply entertaining to listen to a speech with enjoyable visuals.
During the past few weeks, we have been working on digital character illustration. Basically we were required to pretend that we worked in Pixar, and had a font assigned by Pixar to personify by drawing a character. I was assigned Bank Gothic. Just by name of this font, you will notice that two words ‘bank’ and ‘goth’ are included. So, I decided to draw a bankman with a goth outfit. First I researched what a goth looked like; investigated what kind of clothes and accessories goths wore. Then I noticed that the bankman did not have features that made him a bankman. So I made him to hold some bills in his hands. After all this researching and planning, we drew a final draft and then uploaded it to our computers to fill colors in using Adobe Illustrator. This is my final piece:
I think my strengths of the artwork are details, in terms of appearances of the character including accessories, I put in this work. Probably I spent the most time on researching for outfits goths wear. Since most goths are women, it was tough to match up those accessories for a man goth but by exaggerating some features of the accessories, for example making the spike of his hat larger than a normal one to make it look more rocky, I was at last able to suit the accessories for the character. I think my weaknesses are the proportions. Exaggerating features of the character and placing objects out of proportion is a different thing. You cannot, even in cartoons, have a thick arm and a thin one on the other side; you need to keep them the same or they will be out of proportion. I was allowed to redo this project again, I would definitely fix the proportion and make sure objects are placed in the right place.
As noted in the first paragraph, researching was the biggest part for me throughout the whole project. By researching, I learned what made cartoons different from realistic drawing. This seems really general, but this is crucial when it comes to actually drawing cartoons. It will not be a cartoon piece if you draw it realistically. I also got to learn about stereotypes, which is a huge factor in cartoon, by researching. By looking closely into well-known cartoon creator companies’ works, like disney, you can see how different people from different regions are portrayed; for example people from Africa tend to be drawn with extremely large and thick lips. Using the knowledge I gained from those companies’ works, I was able to apply that to the character I needed to design. So, I really recommend everyone to take time on researching because it brings you every knowledge you need in order to draw the character.
Stereotypes aided my development when creating my piece. If there was no stereotype, I would not know what features to exaggerate. If I do not exaggerate any features of the character, my final piece will not be a cartoon piece and instead it will just be a realistic drawing piece. So by having stereotypes, it is possible for us for the first time to exaggerate features of the character, and that is what cartoon is all about.
First of all there is no clear answer to this question. It is because there are always two opposite sides when it comes to these kind of questions about the right of one’s creation. I guess the word copyright has an image of restrictions and limitations when you first hear about it. But actually it also has many factors that open up new possibilities for creators. By having copyright, it credits the creator for all the creativity he/she has produced. This may be encouraging for creators to keep creating products based on their own creativity and originality. There is time limit to copyright but, it still does last until the creator’s death plus another few decades, so I guess by then in most cases the product will no longer be needed. It is not just creators who can benefit by having copyright. You can copy other people’s work; the copyright law is not all about forbidding people from copying others. Although some creators sue others just for taking a fine bit, so little that you cannot even recognize what it is, of their work, we still have fair use to defend ourselves from those overprotective creators. Plus, the work you created from copied footages may be a great source of entertainment for others. Even if you do not earn money from the work you did, you will still earn publicity and respect. So, overall I think copyright may limit some people from creating products that are strongly inspired by another creator, but on the other hand you can always take advantage of what copyright does for you as a creator and develop your own world.
In recent English classes, we have been giving presentations about a poem in depth from the Poetry 180 website of the US Library of Congress. It was a great opportunity for us to listen to others’ analysis of their poems and to explore creative aspects they brought into the presentations. And here, I would like to write down a few aspects they actually brought into their presentations. So, here we go…
Jennifer: Dandelion - by Julie Lechevsky Jennifer started her presentation with a read up of her poem (actually everyone starts off with that). Then she started to analyze the meaning behind the poem. At first, it seemed really difficult for me to even understand the content of the poem, but listening to her analysis it was suddenly very clear for me what the theme of the poem was and why the poet used a certain word for a certain phrase. She explained that some violent words used in the poem in places represent the relation the protagonist is having between characters he/she meets at school or at home. She connected dandelion to those violent words saying that the protagonist wants to be freed from the environment he/she is living under now. I think what she said is completely true because, dandelions in the spring have their seeds go fly into the sky and I am quite positive that the poet related that scene to some sort of freedom. As well as in real life, as we go into the ages of rebellion we will probably start to feel the need of freedom more than we did in the past.
Kate: The Last Wolf – by Mary TallMountain Kate’s poem seemed a bit different from others’. I think it was because the poem is based on an experience we normally do not experience throughout our lives. Have you ever had a wolf go right past you? I do not think any of you had an experience of that sort. As you might have noticed when looking at the poet’s name, her last name is TallMountain, which makes me think that she is probably a Native American. I think this poem was only able to be written by a person with this kind of speciality. I am not trying to be sounding racist but, only these kind of people can experience an encounter with a wolf because they usually live in the middle of wild nature. Kate explained the special mood and tense the poem created throughout the proficient use of metaphors. I agree with what she said for the most part. I also liked the comparison with the novel ‘Shiver’. It shared the same theme of greatness of nature. Also at the same time she explained that the poem also portrayed wolfs as a safe animal, when in real life they are considered as a dangerous animal and can be hunted for leather. It was a special poem that made me feel the greatness of nature once again.
Eva: Tuesday 9:00 AM – by Denver Butson Eva’s poem was quite entertaining and funny in a way, because so many unusual events happen in one place; natural disasters suffering customers at the bus stop and also in the bus. Just reading the poem, it would not make any sense and a high technique of interpretation is needed. But Eva successfully was able to figure out the meaning of each part of the poem. Also Mr. Kew pointed out a great point that each element (fire, water, etc.) in the poem cancelled out all elements, like water putting out fire. In that sense, I think each person was able to help out others in the bus, but since they did not, it also can mean that people when they are in emergency, even when others are also in emergency as well, only care about themselves.
Marshall: Sidekicks – by Ronald Koertge Marshall also had an entertaining poem to analyze. He pointed out the different topic in each stanza along with a brief summary of each of them. In that sense, I think this poem is a unique one because for others, poems seemed to always talk about the same thing throughout the whole poem and did not concentrate on a specific topic. He was detailed in his analysis of the literacy features used in the poem. I also liked how he compared the poem with a television show called ‘Home Improvement’ that he used to watch when he was little. It was a bit odd that he did not like the poem itself because I personally felt this poem was really entertaining, but I think I can sort of get and understand his point because this poem was not that serious and was just for fun. I cannot see the feeling or the experience behind the poem. In that point, yes, I do not like the poem.
Recently, I have been working on making a short book trailer of a book I have read before. The book I was reading is called “Real World” by Natsuo Kirino, who is a Japanese writer. I will not tell you anything about the content of the book, so if you are curious please watch the book trailer I made. A bit embarrassing but hope you enjoy and understand. Just to add, I am not even good at video making so please bear in mind that some parts may not look professional at all.
Also, this is my Shelfari bookshelf. You might find some books quite interesting for you. If so, hope you enjoy those books.
This semester, we have been working on ‘Presenting Naked’, attempting to present by freeing yourself, in technology class. Our final project was to create a presentation about anything you would like to do about and to present it in front of the class.
We went through few steps until up to this stage, and of course these steps are the design cycle: investigate, design, plan, create, and evaluate (this is what I am doing right now).
Investigate: For the investigate phase, I think I was able to do an extremely great job, as I feel like this phase was the one that I took a lot of time to make work organized and detailed. I did not miss out any piece of work and did required homework from that phase, so I think it is alright to feel that I did great. By discussing in groups about what makes a successful presentation as well as my personal research, I think I was able to cover the general knowledge about presenting naked and how to do it.
Design: Throughout the design phase, I did a fairly well job inquiring about different tools that I can use for the presentation. I thought of my topic and from the possibilities and the limitation of each tool I inquired about, I was able to squeeze down the tools to one that I really wanted to use for the presentation. I also feel slide designing was a productive session for me to consider about how to create effective slides for the audience.
Plan: In the plan phase, I did a final preparation before I started creating the presentation. I think I was quite detailed throughout the whole phase, and I am generally happy and satisfied with my work during this phase. By setting due dates and writing down the resources I needed, it was clear for me to know what I really needed to do now and what to do later.
Create: In the create phase, as the name of the phase might spoil what we did in the phase, I created the final presentation. I followed all of my plans and did not changed any bits of the plan. First, I had a hard time trying handling my tool because it was my first time using it, and I had many times where I was just about to give up, but after some additional research about that tool I was able to at least get a grip (a right one) on the tool. I am generally satisfied with this phase as well, because I tried hard in this phase especially when trying to handle the tool correctly.
My presentation, although I still did not give the speech yet, was organized well with appropriate slides. I also had a detailed script that came along with the slides, and overall I think the match of the two were perfect in almost every aspect, timing-wise, topic-wise, etc.. As I mentioned before, I still did not give the presentation yet, so I cannot write much about the way I presented, such as my tone of voice, volume, projection, and posture. I hope the best for my presentation which I will present today, so please wish me great luck!!
It seems like our class did a character formative performance sometime during the unit of characterization. Since I was absent on that day when we performed, I will write a reflection about another activity we did during this unit. Please note that the performance from this activity was not taken by a camera. And the activity we did was the experimentation of exaggerated eye contact and no eye contact.
What is the skill that I used?
The skill I used is eye contact in general. By having able to make varieties of eye contacts towards other characters, I will have larger repertoire of characters with different personality I can act as. The task was to act out two versions of a scene; one with exaggerated eye contact towards others and another with no eye contact towards others at all. So, this task specifically required concentration and quick change of the characteristic of my character.
How did I approach creating the character?
The first thing I thought of was the personality a person with exaggerated eye contact or no eye contact have. As you also might have a clue, a person with exaggerated eye contact is usually strong-willed. On the other hand, a person with no eye contact is usually really shy and cannot take action by himself/herself. So, as I was acting as a shop assistant at the register counter, I would act big towards the customer acted by Marshall if setting said that my character had exaggerated eye contact. And vice versa for when my character had no eye contact.
Was it successful – if so how? What needed improvement? Make a suggestion?
I think our performance was successful. It was entertaining and we heard laugher from the audience. I think that was because we were very concentrated and were able to get into to character quickly. If I were to make a suggestion or an improvement to the performance, honestly the only thing I can think of is the projection. By projecting more, I think the audience would have heard more of our conversation. And if they find that conversation entertaining, I think the performance will be much better.
How can I use these skills in a performance?
As said in the first question, by having various eye contacts, we can easily form characters even if other elements were missing such as vocal expression and posture. By looking at the eyes of characters, we can guess what kind of personality the character have. So, overall I think eye contact is a critical element in characterization and it will be great if I can learn to quickly and momentarily decide what kind of eye contact I want to use depending on the character I am acting as.
I chose Für Elise composed by Beethoven to analyze two different versions of it. One was an orchestra version and the other was a jazz version. Please check out those versions from this post.
First of all, let me talk about from the similarity. I only was able to find one simple but important similarity. It was that both versions had the same melody. Although the rhythm differed between the two, the melody was generally kept the same. And thinking back, there is no way the melody could differ a lot between the two because otherwise we cannot recognize that those are the same classic piece. On the other hand, there were a lot of differences between the two. It felt like almost everything was different. First of all, the instruments used in both versions were different; the instrumentation for the orchestra version was a piano and a basic orchestral structure, when there were only an electric piano and a bass for the jazz version. Out of the three basic elements of music, rhythm, melody, and harmony, only melody, as I mentioned, was the same. In jazz music, there tends be a lot of syncopations throughout whole pieces with strong and weak beats all mixed up in random places, while in classical music, syncopations do not as often appear in pieces. The same thing went for Für Elise as well. In the orchestra version, there was no single syncopation in the piece. The tempo that allows rhythms to fit in also differed completely. Dynamics were absolutely no near similar to each other; in the orchestra version, dynamics were kept in piano (meaning soft) the whole way except for the climax where it was performed in forte (meaning powerful, with strength) to create tension, while in the jazz version, there were no change in dynamics. I feel like the tone had the most difference between the two. There just seems to be no change in tone whatsoever in jazz music. On the other hand, since in classical music changes of key are obvious (mostly structured by a-moll, C-dur, and F-dur), it is relevantly easy for the player to decide on what kind of tone they want to use to interpret their music (obviously sections in a-moll will be played in a dark and a soft tone, and sections in C-dur will be played in a bright and a moderately powerful tone). Plus, since the solo is piano, as a piano player, I know that when a-moll transforms into C-dur (when a key transforms into its relative key) or vice versa, an enormous tension is caused. For texture, there is not much to say for the jazz version other than that it is simple due to having no keys and not much layers to the sound produced. For the orchestra version, there is much more tense than the original piano solo version because there are many more instruments with different textures each, and when they all combine together sounds with strength but also tense are produced.
During the last few months, we have been working on a unit called ‘Abstract Painting’. Throughout the process of completing the unit we attempted figuring out the answer for the unit question ‘what makes art attractive?’. Our significant concept was ‘the principles and elements of art help us to create and evaluate art.’. Our final task was to create an abstract painting utilizing the principles and the elements of art.
It was a long way until completion of the final piece. We first needed to know what abstract art even was. We went through many slideshows/videos and worksheet to understand the process from classic art until abstract art. Once we have understood that we researched on an abstract artist. I chose Kenneth Noland as the artist. Just glancing at his paintings, it just seemed to fit me well. I found out that he used a lot of circles and triangles in his abstract. We made thumbnail plans to test out colors and shape arrangements. For the final piece, I attempted keeping Kenneth Noland’s style as much as possible at the same time I tried adding new elements such as shape placements to the painting. I chose to put a circle in the middle, as most of Noland’s paintings do have one in the middle. By having one in the middle, it added balance to the painting. I had a square around the circle. By doing that, around the square there will be triangles appearing (same with here, trying to keep Noland’s style). But, on purpose I did not use the triangles as Noland would normally do. Most of his paintings that have triangles tend of have them in the same place one on each other, just having the sizes varied. In my case, I use the triangles to empathize the circle in the middle. For the colors, I used four colors that were in an accentually analogic relation. I wanted the viewer to have a warm image of the painting but at the same time wanted the only cold color of blue to excite them with the contrast between with the warm colors. I am happy that I chose to blend the colors used for the circle. That added flow and movement to the painting. Noland also chose to blend the colors in most of his works as well. So overall, I am satisfied with my complete work. I used some original shape arrangement, chose colors that added excitement to the painting, and used both hard-edge and blending painting styles. But on the other hand, I think there could be some improvements to be made. In places where I used the hard-edge painting, sometimes paints blended by accident and I had to cover them with additional coats of paint. Also the blending painting style I used was a bit to rough, maybe too random. If I were to redo the blending, I would add a certain pattern to it, and by doing that there possibly might be more movement to the painting.
Overall, this unit was really enjoyable for me, and there were many new things for me to learn, but I feel like that changed my image towards abstract art. Until this unit, I did not like abstract art that much because it seemed like artists were just doing random paintings, but now I know that artists’ feelings and inspirations affect the work largely. Completing this unit has helped me also interpret pieces in music classes as well.