Unit 11

Remixes/Mashups

Upon watching the videos, the one main thing I’m nervous about is remixing photos. I had a terrible time just trying to figure out how to trim pictures out of background scenes. I have no idea how I will manipulate them to get them into a different form of media. We shall see. That recut version of the Shining is absolutely fantastic.  And the poem by Bukowski (one of my favorite writers) just makes me depressed that I don’t write more often. Despite being a dirty old man, Bukowski is a heck of a motivator.

Part 1 of Everything is a Remix – I love the Zeppelin explainer – knock-offs and covers being the legal way to rip someone off. Zeppelin did it illegally – shame that none of the people they stole music from had broad audiences – and were typically from a slightly different brand of music so it may not have been as obvious as if they had stole it from other rock groups.

Part 3 of Everything is a Remix – interesting to think that copying can be seen as an integral part of creating as opposed to a diversion from it. Im not sure I buy that, but I believe its true that you cant create in a vacuum. Inspiration from other great works is proof of that. Copy – Transform – Combine.  Meaning nothing is truly original.

I watched both of these videos along with the Fair(ly) Use Tale including the Disney characters. My thinking on what a remix is is that it’s a more blatant form of utilizing others’ ideas than what has been employed in the past. There’s no doubt people steal – but a lot of times I believe people are simply inspired by other works, use them to generate their own ideas or creative motivation and creation. I think good remixes have to be clever enough products to justify the use of other people’s ideas. In other words, I’ll accept that a remix is worthwhile, if in combining previously created elements, it demonstrates new creativity. I think that’s the definition of a good remix anyway. A bad remix is anything that steals other people’s stuff for no interesting or worthwhile reason.

Audio

For examples, I watched Dont Tase me Bro (pretty lame – only inserted two clips and they dont even fit that well), Call Me Maybe/Star Wars (this one is excellent – yes its a little more formulaic, just inserting words – but it’s done well, in time and is creative in finding the clips – i love the part where they put in the subtitles over the alien talk).  Scary Mary is the best of them – it shows true creativity, simply using existing clips as building blocks for an entirely new idea.

Remix

The idea of remixing the photo of Doctorow is an interesting challenge….

Admittedly, it’s not my strong suit. I used a site called http://apps.pixlr.com/o-matic to put the effects on the image, then messed with it on Microsoft Paint. Here it is:

doctorowpic

I did the popcorn remix.  Didnt take me as long as I thought it would. if there’s a way to shift the images so they slant or sit differently, I couldnt figure it out. It was enough for me to figure out how to upload video and lay it in.  The laying in of video has become much easier after working with Audacity and Movie Maker. Here’s the final product. (I wish it was cleaner. And I know the last video is way too long (and kind of racy) but it was the best thing I found from Bora Bora!

As for the DS106 remix I was given the task of remixing the cover of an autobiography and inserting a random character (like Uncle Bob).  I actually went as far as to download Adobe Photoshop to work on this assignment. I didn’t want to mess with the other person’s Flickr account, so I just snipped the image and used it as a basis for remixing that way. Here’s the original.

8545295793_a2bb371f16_z

And here’s the remixed version. Its not awesome but at least I figured out how to blend a picture in and add some new text.  The new remix version of this assignment is about what happens when the ghost of your Uncle John (I know it says Uncle Bob in the assignment but I made it Uncle John) is overshadowing your hopes and dreams.

AutobiographyMashup

Six Stars worth of assignments

This Doesn’t Belong Here – using my new favorite photo editing site, Lunapic and two images from Google (2 stars)

MashupAssignments 1511

ET on 10 commandments

 

Lip Read – this was a clip downloaded through savefromnet to Movie Maker – then I had to do a soundtrack repeatedly recorded on Audacity as I watched a silent version of the clip, then matched up the audio and video on Movie Maker.

This is an Animal House scene with my https://www.youtube.com/embed/ChbRRgxUwS0“>overdub

MashupAssignments544

Summary

I like remixes but they aren’t easy for me. I think with more experience – particularly with the still photograph software, it could really enjoyable. Its a challenge to me to take someone else’s work and change it and make it better. As I pointed out before, blatantly using someone else’s work as the basis for your own bothers me creatively. I don’t think what I’ve done here is particularly creative. I understand to some it’s similar to using someone else as inspiration, but to me it’s very different. With inspiration, the actual artistic product is still your own.


Unit 10

Making Movies

I’m working with Windows Movie Maker. It took me a while to figure out the editing tool because stupidly I was reading it as if what I clipped was removed and of course its what is between the in and out points that remains. Because of that I have to reload the video each time I want to add a shot, but thats not too much trouble. My first thought in trying to remake the Chaplin video was that my favorite part of the video was Chaplin himself – his face and his actions. The only other thing in the shots with him at that time was the iron bars, which obviously reminded me of prison. So I figured it would be funny to give him something -else- to react to while behind bars and that made me think of interspersing film clips with the Chaplin video. I downloaded several prison scenes from famous movies including Silence of the Lambs, Grand Budapest Hotel, Stir Crazy, Ghostbusters and Shawshank Redemption. I didn’t do a ton of searching and scrapping stuff – I kind of let the scenes that I found dictate how I would create the movie.  It took me a few hours to get comfortable with the tools (as explained above), but once I did, it was really no problem at all. I learned how to bring in music where I want it and how to select the point in the track where I want to begin by using in and out points. The only downside (which isnt much) about interspersing scenes with the Chaplin video is that every time you want to more more Chaplin in you have to download the whole video again because once you trim it just one piece, the rest is gone. I used the free music from incompetech- three songs, the first is the elevator music track called Local Forecast, then a funk thing called Your Call and I ended with a classical song called Danse Macabre. I thought about leaving some of the music track under the movie clips, but I liked the stark cuts better – thought it had more punch.  YouTube was the source for all of the film clips – I simply looked up prison scenes (remembering the ones from Silence of the Lambs and Shawshank Redemption). The Movie Maker’s tool to add a title page and captions are very very simple and self-explanatory. Adding the music took a little while to figure out, because its actually a two-fold process – identifying where you want the music to come in and identifying what part of the music you want played.  Once I figured that out, I was essentially done. I actually had to go back and reopen the finished project when I realized I hadn’t added any of the Chaplin sound. I figured out that only some tracks are downloadable from Soundcloud but luckily one of the tracks where the woman speaks was downloadable. I used that tiny piece of sound and stuck it in.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/LClMlULUKf0“>HERE’S MY PROJECT – I THINK IT CAME OUT WELL.

Assignments

For one five star project, I decided to do a mystery story. I got my entire family involved and my kids were particularly into it, getting dressed up and helping me name the characters. I sketched out a shot list that helped me determine what order I ended up shooting in.  I tried to shoot by staying on one side of the 180 degree line (also realized that by moving behind the actors that it gave me some easy points to use in editing – like when I was right behind someone and then wanted to cut to them speaking). One thing I realized was that I should have used by phone side to side instead of up and down and it would have given me a wider picture but oh well.  Look for the cameo from my cat.

It’s called https://www.youtube.com/embed/lAxrEdizqeU“>”Inspector Biscuits and the Mystery of the Missing Ring”.

I also did a five star assignment called Highlight Reel – I used my favorite athlete, Mariano Rivera. Tehre were plenty of highlight reels already built on YouTube but I built me own – only using them for sources, not entire consequences. I enjoyed this and it wasn’t difficult. I am getting used to being able to download and move clips around easily, along with trying to manipulate sound by figuring out where I want it to start and end and also using fades.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/9bC6RVmF4gQ“>Here it is.

My last assignment was a two star assignment called Capture the Beauty.  The idea was to shoot a 6 second video with Vine which I did – showing the beautiful white tree in my front yard. The hardest part of this assignment was trying to figure out Vine. I signed up and shot multiple videos but couldnt figure out how to post or share them. Finally I ended up shooting it on my camera and then allowing Vine to take a video from the camera and I uploaded it and =then= was able to share it.

Here it is. 

Summary

This has been my favorite unit so far and the skills I’m learning here I am already thinking about using for future projects once this class is over. The editing is so simple and so flexible and looks so clean, I can see a lot of possibilities. The process has made me more comfortable with the process of downloading and using files and trying different tools to see what works and what doesn’t.  My wife (who is by training an Avid editor) wants me to teach the tools to her.

POSSIBLE DS106 PROJECT!!!!!!

A thought for a possible DS106 video assignment is called Car Chase!  The assignment is to use existing movie footage and reconstruct a car chase from beginning to end – for example, start with Frank Drebin telling the driver to follow that car, then build your car chase until it comes to some sort of an end.  Bonus points for unusual music – make sure to add a title page that sets up the chase.


Unit 9

Reading Movies

In readying my tools I discovered that my computer does, in fact, have Windows Live Movie Maker. I had no idea it was there. I just messed around for the last ten minutes with a video of my son, adding captions, music, an effect and some kind of a dissolve open.  I;m having trouble inserting it here – I think because its a wmlp file. I’ll keep working on it. I also downloaded MPEG StreamClip and played with it a little bit.  Easy to import videos and mess around by I need to keep practicing to get the editing down pat, although the tools (in point, out point, etc) are all familiar to me.

Look, Listen, Analyze

I chose Reservoir Dogs, a great film – and the Mexican standoff scene at the end. It starts off by putting the wounded cop in the center of the scene and rotating around him to reveal one of the men coming in. It does one cutaway to a wounded man on the floor but otherwise stays with the same basic shot, rotating back to the left when Chris Penn comes in. Without changing angles, Penn shoots the cop. Now the shots change. We see a steep angle down to a wounded man and a steep angle up at Chris Penn, clearly showing who’s in charge. Cop is still in the foreground of the wide shot with 5 men in it now.  But for the next several minutes, its just Penn and the wounded man back and forth – same shot – same angles. When it finally pushes in, its to show how angry Penn is. These shots match Ebert’s formula in that the wounded man is to the lower right of the camera shot while Penn is to the upper left, demonstrating dominance. When the boss enters, he’s in each shot while part of the conversation – back of his had in the foreground or shot slightly from below up into his face when he’s speaking. Either way, he’s the dominant presence in the shot. When everyone pulls their guns, the camera angles are either right into the barrels of the guns or right down the sight lines of their arms. It gives the viewer the impression they are either shooting or being shot at. Love the low angle shot when all the bullets go off, then returning to the original opening angle to see Mr. Pink leave. No real audio tricks to speak of. Not watching the video, I realized how loud the cocking of the guns are as well as the heavy breathing as the scene moves ahead. Interesting to note the echo in the warehouse. No music or background identifiable.

Exploring the Movie Even More

Other tidbits about the movie include the fact that the budget for the film was so low that many of the actors wore their own clothes, Another is that the movie budget didn’t include money for police assistance for traffic control so during the carjacking scene, Steve Buscemi could only drive when the lights were green. And the warehouse where most of the movie takes place used to be a mortuary and was filled with coffins and even a hearse.  Source from IMDB

As for the film genre, it is clear from the AMC genres site that is a crime and gangster movie. It’s obvious due to the repeated references to the crime (jewel heist) and violence (shooting police) and the actual violence shown in screen. IMDB has it listed under crime and drama. Much of the film is a buildup to the tension and shooting in its final scene.

To work on other clips, I went to youtube, then used savefrom.net to download two other scenes from the movie – the one where they get their code names and the one where he cuts the cop’s ear off.  I always seem to lose the files when I download them, so I copy them immediately into the video file.

I did the edits in MPEG STreamclip, figured out how to put them back to back, but when I tried to Save As, it says the movie can;t be saved in this format, even though Im not changing the format. (its mp4) Files that appeared had 0 bytes and of course wouldn’t upload to YouTube.  Instead, I ended up doing the edits in Windows Movie Maker and then uploading =that= to YouTube. Its much easier and allows you to play with the effects and captions as well. The results are https://www.youtube.com/embed/c_aEdqcg6qE“>here

(For some reason the audio doesnt match up)

YouTube Genres

My favorite type of YouTube clip that I didn’t see listed was the fail. I think the characteristics would be anytime anyone is sincerely trying to accomplish something and then failing spectacularly and hilariously.  It usually involves someone getting hurt.

Here’s an example.

As for the genres that are listed, I felt like some are overly broad (like animation could be broken down into sci-fi or cartoon or stop-action, etc) while others (usually the sillier ones) seemed to be down to very narrow genres (like children with accents). Somehow the comedy sections seems to mostly include kids and animals and no actual…comedians.

Pre-Production

I’m thinking of going back to the silent era so I wanted to find a clip with a lot of dialogue and facial expressions that I could play with. I came up with this one from Anchorman.

Daily Creates (did two)

Irritable Vowel Poetry

Title: How do you daily creat(e)? (poem without an E)

Daily dating? / No – sorry / Mating? / Hmmm OK / That can work!

I also did the DS106 class president (Hail to the Chief) – uploaded to Flickr and tagged tdc1194

#DS106PRESIDENT

Summary

This Unit is great and has a lot of fascinating tools. Some of it still seems a bit beyond me, but I’m trying to keep up. Unfortunately, the technology, particularly on StreamClip isn’t helping me demonstrate what I’ve been able to do.  On the flip side, the Windows Movie Maker is fantastic and seems extremely easy to use.


Comment on Unit 8 by Kathy Onarheim

Wow! You have some awesome creations going on! I love that your kids are involved too – very cool.

I understand about the feeling of breaking in on conversations – but it is open and there are some great things about building community. If you hadn’t left a comment on my work – I would not have found you! There is much to learn by tracking others. If you find you will be #ds106 #4Life – let others know you are out there and connect. Twitter helps alot!

Hope to see more of your work going forward. You are on a successful path.

Like

Unit 8

Telling Stories Within the Web

Reading the description for storytelling on the web is daunting to say the least. Manipulating photos or audio is one thing, but actually digging into a web site and manipulating code (or somehow messing with the guts of the site) seems to me to be something altogether different. I agree with the article that says the concept of using websites to tell a story other than the one that was intended “pushes our consideration of ‘story'”.  In practice I wonder what the actual value is in being able to alter a web page. I understand that the goal here is to learn the process, get a better understanding of how web pages work (and in this case, if i learn anything at all, it will be new) and mess with code, but I will have to experiment with this to see if I can discover any instances in which I feel this would be the best way to tell a story as opposed to simply another way to do it. I continue to ask this question even after seeing the examples (like the google site that includes ingredients to cook children) – is this a situation in which these are the best ways to tell a story?  I think there are certainly arguments to be made that certain stories can be told best through still images, or just audio – I’m not sure there’s a similar argument to be made in this case.

OK – I’ve figured out how to install XRay Goggles – pretty easy so far…..  Ok, I finished manipulating the website and it was a lot easier than I thought it would be. I’m not sure that I learned a ton about how code is used, but it was incredibly simple to change the website. I learned, however, that you have to hover over the lines to get X-Ray to do its thing. Clicking on links before the X-Ray kicks in takes you to a new page and essentially wipes out all the progress you’ve made. Lesson learned.

http://jerseymurphy.makes.org/goggles/jerseymurphys-remix-of-toronto-blue-jays-at-new-york-yankees-april-6-2015-mlbcom-preview

One more down side – I didn’t alter the whole article – just the part that’s visible when you first bring it up. When I went to try and alter the rest of it, I couldn’t see how to do it without starting all over.

Creating a fictional character

I want to create a character named “Archie, the guy smoking outside when you come into work”. Archie is the kind of guy that typically doesn’t want to be bothered with cultural issues or anything else going on beyond the smoking area, but he’s finding himself increasingly lonely because everyone is quitting smoking and therefore he’s using the internet as a way to reach out, albeit awkwardly, to new people in cyberspace.

Note: I’m still not entirely comfortable with this and always feel as though I am stepping into someone else’s private conversation. I guess i’m not used to the fact that it’s really open to everyone. Not sure if I’m linking these comments correctly. I think they still have to be approved, so I’m not sure if they are on the real site yet.

Comment 1: http://dailydigitaldose.net/2015/04/09/how-influencer-marketing-can-help-you-to-build-reach-and-engagement/comment-page-1/#comment-38

Comment 2: http://seeinggainz.com/assignments/my-number-one/#comment-227

Comment 3: https://angietemple.wordpress.com/2015/04/08/a-little-vision-and-determination/comment-page-1/#comment-85

Comment 4: http://zenas-suitcase.co.uk/2015/04/07/myfavouriteplace-10/#comment-45173

Comment 5: http://konarheim.com/daily-create/masters-golf-minimal-paper-poster/#comment-123

Assignments

I enjoyed the Google X-Ray assignment so much, I opted to use it for my first Web Assignment.  I tried to link a story to it, as the assignment suggested.  It’s WebAssignment 1541 and is worth four stars. ****

http://jerseymurphy.makes.org/goggles/jerseymurphys-remix-of-most-wins-at-the-world-beardmoustache-championships-guinness-world-records

I also used Google X-Ray to design my own personal search engine….for the newly-deceased. I experimented with trying to alter the imagery as well as the text. It initially saved an image of heaven in the upper left, but it didn’t come out through the link below. This is WebAssignment 1438 and is worth 2 stars. **

http://jerseymurphy.makes.org/goggles/jerseymurphys-remix-of-altavista-altavista-search-engine-no-tracking-search

And finally, I used the same program to alter a YouTube page about a cat that appears to be considering bringing his or her owner to a terrible end.  At least I would be if they put me in that shirt.  (I altered a link in this one as well). Unfortunately the video here does not translate – the link to the tutorial in the Assignment bank is broken. I’m not sure if I did this right or not. This was WebAssignment 730 and was worth four stars. ****

http://jerseymurphy.makes.org/goggles/jerseymurphys-remix-of-cat-dancing-with-michael-jackson-song-youtube

Daily Creates all in one Story

First one – Minimalist Paper Poster – I just wanted to do something relatively easy, but I loved the video included here. I opted for a colored piece of paper with some sugar that, once I pushed it around with my finger for a while, became a sugar flower. (tag: tdc1185)

sugarflower

Umbrella picture tdc1183

umbrella

The story: The spring is the time of year where the clouds and sun mix in equal measure. The days that hint at sun end with gray, and the heat can break the back of winter at any time. The images here show the transition from day to night to day – the first bright with shiny flowers, then the return of the rain (or threat of rain) with the umbrella.

Summary

I loved this unit. I was excited to tell my family and friends about Google X-Ray. I am still not convinced that it is anything more than a novelty, but as a novelty, it is fascinating and holds a lot of possibilities. I also enjoyed having to link the imagery in the daily creates together to tell stories – after all, that’s what we’re trying to do. And I believe that all of these programs have opened up a world of possibilities when it comes to telling stories and I find myself considering new modes of art as I consider my own creativity. I am learning a lot about the possibilities the internet still holds and I’m sure I will learn even more when we move into the video portion of the class.