Third Week Summary

Part 1: Assignments

Daily Creates with a short explanation I made this week can be found here.

Comments I made this week can be found here. I tried to edit my assignments based on the comments my classmates made for me. Most wanted a better explanation on the process of how I did something so I revised my work by adding some screen shots on how I did certain things to hopefully help with that. With an artistic class like this, it’s cool to look at each other’s work because it can help bounce ideas around if you’re stuck and learn new techniques from each other. I’m learning more and more about Audacity just from looking at other Sound Effect Stories my classmates made which is nice.

Audio Assignments I made this week can be found here.

Total 13.5 Stars

Summaries I made this week can be found here.

Part 2: Reflection

I do think I improved from last week. Maybe not much with the unfortunate circumstances I’ve been in this past week, but I am trying to do better. The video/audio summaries were probably the hardest assignments this week just because I felt I could spend more time on actually doing the assignments rather than listening and summing up someone else’s views. I understand the importance of it but I didn’t have a lot of time to dedicate to this for medical reasons. I think the only thing I’d do differently is listen to those assignments while I was in the hospital for hours because then I probably would’ve gotten more from them.

I’ve only used Audacity once when I had to record my voice for an online presentation so I was only slightly familiar with it. It was nice to be able to learn more about the program features and intricacies such as the effects I used in the Song Story Assignment and Sound Effects Story Assignment. Audacity has so much more to offer than I realized and I think this is a tool that will come in handy for other classes. If I had known about the fading in and out effects when I used Audacity the first time, I think I would’ve gotten a better grade on that presentation because the issue was not being able to hear my voice over the song. Now that I know more, it’ll be a useful tool when it comes to creativity.

The assignments aren’t necessarily hard, just time-consuming. It’s easy to become frustrated in the editing process and this highlights the importance of starting the assignments early in the week. I can’t wait until the last minute for anything because it doesn’t take much to irritate me, but there are still some things that just demand so much time such as the Sound Effects Story Assignment. First, you have to think of an exciting story. Second, you have to figure out how to take any dialogue out of the story. Third, you have to make sure the story still makes sense to the listener without any dialogue or added visual effects. Forth, you have find all of the sound clips you need online. Fifth, learn how to order them in Audacity. Sixth, listen/edit it 20 times until it sounds right. Seventh, write about and how you did it. It’s not that difficult but repeating a similar process for numerous assignments does take up a lot of time.

The assignment I enjoyed most this week was the Song Story Assignment. It’s easy to talk about a special memory and songs help me relive those moments. Reflecting on how far Daniel and I have come since the day we met, the day I heard that song for the first time, always makes me happy.

An overall issue with the work and course is that it is so short and different than any other class I’ve taken. With the course being short, there is not a buffer period where I can adapt to the new culture, styles, and grading criteria fast enough to recover. Another issue is that unlike all the science and math courses I have taken where there is a known right and wrong, art is subjective requires a new way of thinking and a breaking of the grading paradigm. Though with hard work and some serious effort, the art I make should stand to the strictest of standards.

Moon Graffiti Summary

Moon Graffiti is an audio drama made by The Truth Podcast and it is about when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon in 1969.  The question this clip is based on is, what if they crashed? A speech had been prepared by Nixon in the event they did not make it. They use this to change the outcome of the story. The performers use many sounds and voices to keep the story story interesting. With this being an audio drama, sound is the most critical aspect. The crashing noises, technical and static noises, etc. helps the listener tremendously follow what’s happening. It allows them to visualize the story since that aspect is absent here. The sounds other than the voices have to be able to guide the story. For example the crashing followed by utter silence highlights how the two astronauts are now completely alone without any communication to anyone besides each other. The addition of voices are what guide the listeners emotions. They talked about what they’d be leaving behind and what they’re doing there which are deep, sincere topics. And Nixon’s speech adds the seriousness that leads the listener to think, what if it did happen this way and what would things be like now? At the beginning the narrator explains the background and puts all aspects in perspective for the listener which helps the overall purpose of this story.

TED Radio Hour/ScottLo Summaries

There’s a narrator for the story of an MIT professor named Sherri and her voice is used to tell parts of what she saw in a nursing home where a robot was being used to interact with the elderly. Uplifting music played while recordings of real interaction played because that’s what the robot was doing; uplifting those in the home. One woman lost her child and Sherri was amazed at the amount of comfort this robot brought to the woman. Everyone around seemed happy and took this as positive progress while Sherri, however, felt depressed. The music suddenly stopped. It was a turning point in her research. The clip leaves off with a cliffhanger because you’ll have to tune in for more if you want to hear the rest of the story.

ScottLo discusses and gives examples of various ds106 assignments. The episodes usually begin with some clip that relate to the topic to be discussed. The point of all of them is to help ds106 students. In Episode 8, he gives tips on changing your name on your blog from admin to something else and remembering to tag all of your assignments. In Episode 9, he goes over an assignment for making a radio bumper. He plays four examples and talks about challenges a student had with Audacity. The examples he plays are very diverse highlighting student’s creativity. In Episode 10, the topic is telling stories on the radio. The clip starts with a radio cast from 1970 which is an example for suspenseful radio. In Episode 11, background sounds are used throughout the telling of a story. The noises are distracting and makes it harder to hear him and I don’t understand the noises and how he’s going over people’s comments on the radio bumper assignments relate. In Episode 12, the problem with exporting mp3s in audacity is addressed and the radio assignment is discussed. In Episode 13, an audio assignment I did was discussed called Make Your Own Ringtone and how to avoid losing work in Audacity. In Episode 14,  he challenges listeners to try to tell a story in the kind of framework from the example he plays.

 

My Own Ringtone

For this assignment, I made my own ringtone in Audacity. I imported two separate clips from freesound.org of a piano and violin then cropped and joined them as seen in the photo below. I chose these sounds because I like more quiet, subtle tones rather than loud, startling tones. I don’t want sounds coming from my pocket that causes everyone surrounding me to stop and stare. Usually noises like this don’t lead to that.

Saturday’s Daily Create

Last month I took a 3D printing class just for fun. I found out there’s a lot of useful things you can make such as this back panel clip. The only downside is 3D printing feels like it takes forever. Just for this little clip, about one inch in length, took about 35 minutes. I’ve wanted to make supplies for my desk like a cord clip organizer, but some take over 2 hours to make. It’s hard to set aside so much time for something I don’t need at this very moment. But I’m sure I’ll do it one day.

I chose to put a diagram of the printer behind the clip because I needed to lay it on something and I thought that paper made more sense than just laying it on the floor. This way the background relates to the object.

My Cleaning Playlist

Cleaning and organizing can be difficult in silence. That’s why I must have a cleaning playlist. I like for most of the songs to be upbeat to keep me moving. If classical music was playing, I’d probably end up laying in bed while looking at old photo albums or something. Then I wouldn’t get anything accomplished. While the first to songs are a little slower, I still like them a lot (Harry is one of my all-time favorite music artists).  It kind of helps me get started as the other songs get faster later on. The other songs don’t really hold any personal meaning, they’re just fun to listen to. I don’t want a lot of super serious songs that will put me deep in thought because that’ll distract me from cleaning. These are songs I can sing along and occasionally dance to in the comfort of my room knowing I won’t be judged by anyone. It’s just a way to make cleaning less painful.

 

 

 

 

I searched for each song I wanted then added to my playlist in Soundcloud. You can see in the picture how I went about adding each song…just find the song, click on the ‘More’ button and then add to playlist. Very simple.

Just Another Daily Create

I honestly don’t keep up with anyone in the political world because I don’t like how people argue about those touchy topics. So I really don’t know much about this guy, but I figured I’d put him in a desert since that’s basically the opposite of a nice, pretty beach with salt water as far as the eye can see.

Song Story

There are a ton of songs that bring back memories but one of my favorites is “When You’re Smiling and Astride Me” by Father John Misty. Daniel and I met online and enjoyed talking to each other so much we decided to meet. On the day we met, he gave me a tour of downtown Fredericksburg since I was new to the area and just got to know each other better. Although both of us were still nervous, we didn’t want to say goodbye to each other. Instead of going back to my dorm room, I walked to the parking deck with him. Instead of him driving away when we reached his car, he told me to get in. He started his car and played that song. It was in that moment I realized he was something special. Everything between us clicked and I knew without a doubt I wanted to be with him. From this clip in particular, the last line, “I can hardly believe I’ve found you and I’m terrified by that” highlighted how I felt because I had very strong feelings for him instantly and it was scary…but also amazing at the same time. In addition, it isn’t a song typical 19-year-old guys would listen to and that stood out to me. I listened to that song on repeat for the rest of the night after we eventually parted ways. Over a year and a half later, we still listen to that song because it’s special to both of us.

This assignment wasn’t hard since I already had this song downloaded on my laptop. I just imported into audacity. The song is pretty long so I just included my favorite part in the clip. I used the fade in and fade out effects since I cut some of the beginning and ending out. I thought it’d flow a little better like that. I chose to speak at the beginning just to label the assignment so I’d remember what it’s for.

Daily Create Tour

Today’s daily create was “you, on tour” and since I’ve had my upcoming trip to the Dominican Republic on my mind lately, I decided to use that. My picture can be found here. I found a picture online of Punta Cana and used aviary.com to add text to it. The only hard part was choosing a picture. They’re all so beautiful!

Sound Effects Story

This week’s required assignment involved making a story using only sound effects. You can listen to mine on Soundcloud.

My story is about a guy going for a walk then he sees a car crash. He runs to the scene and uses his phone to call for help. He checks the heartbeat of one driver then the ambulance comes. I chose this because it isn’t boring, everyday noises and it’s easy to follow without listening to any voices. I used freesound.org to download 6 different sounds. 1. walking 2. car crash 3. running 4. phone calling 5. heartbeat and 6. sirens.

I used audacity to cut the clips because some of them were too long and would cause the clip to exceed the 90-second limit and moved them around until I got them in the order I wanted. In the picture you can see how to import audio files and behind that are the sounds I chose. The hardest part was not being able to include voices because I think it’d be better to hear “what’s your emergency?” in the clip. But even without that, I think any listener could guess what’s going on.