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FINAL POST

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With the Fall Semester over… having finished my Visual Litteracyt class with a 101% and then mysteriously having that grade dropped to 88.35% do to a certain assignment being changed from a perfect score to a “0” for absolutely no reason whatsoever; Then having the instructor, Bill Genereux, admit it was a mistake while simultaneously refusing to do anything to correct the score… All I can say on the matter is… I think George Carlin may have been 100% correct in his view on education in the video below…

Click HERE for more on this “Grading” situation

(AND VOTE RON PAUL! ! !)

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“Small World Gallery” with Jim Richardson

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I enjoyed our field trip to the “Small World Gallery” and listening to Jim Richardson speak on some of his experiences with photography. I showed up a little late so I missed a little, but in listening to the audio our instructor recorded I was able to hear what I missed. Listening to Jim speak of the photography he did in the “Flint Hills” of Kansas I felt I got a much greater understanding of “Telling A Story” with photography where he was talking about the “Seasons” of that particular area being “Fire,” “Rebirth,” “Birth,” “Death,” and “Fire” again.

I had never considered that the “Fire” or “Death” season might be something worthy of photographing. I mean, leaves changing color and all that sort of thing, sure, but “Fire?” It reminded me of a shot I had passed up once when out riding to look for things to photograph. I saw an area where the stocks had been burnt off and as I passed I saw how the burnt stubble of stocks on the hilly plain stood up against a backdrop of sky and thought for a moment, “Yeah,” but then passed on by. Guess I should have stopped and got that one. Anyway…

I came in about the time Jim was speaking of his photo of the fireflies on the plains. I’ve had a considerable amount of trouble attempting night shots before so I was very interested where he was talking about for a so many second exposure you need an equal amount of noise reduction. Of course my cheapo camera isn’t equipped to perform a 75 second exposure like he was talking about, but I can still apply the principal.

I also took note of how he was saying at one point he had saw where certain photographers were using fluorescent lighting which wasn’t actually appropriate according to the norms and what had been taught in photography at the time, but it turned out they were doing that to create sort of their own style… something that was different. I’ve thought about things along those lines before regarding the Rule of Thirds (Which he also mentioned).

Sometimes, quite often it seems to me, it simply doesn’t work well to follow the Rule of Thirds or many of the principals taught in photography, or even in composition. Or sometimes it seems when following some of these rules, etc. they need to be tweaked just a bit to get the best effect. I was actually reading something on that someone had tweeted the other day. Anyway… it was nice to learn from a professional like Jim Richardson that following the “Rules” doesn’t always make for the best photographs.

Eames Cards Assignment (The Final)

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Holliday Greeting Assignment

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ASSIGNMENT: Use an online photo processor’s website to submit a digital file for processing. and 2) Use your developing digital media skills to create an awesome, original, holiday greeting. For this assignment, make a photo collage (that is more than one photo in a single photo) that you will be proud to send to family and friends as a holiday greeting. A standard 4 x 6 matte finish 1 hour photo  from Walmart is fine.

Be sure to use elements of design we’ve been discussing this semester. In a separate document, do a short write up describing how you used these design principles. Submit a print quality JPG to this assignment. Send your JPG to a photo processor using the internet. Mount a 4 x 6 or larger print on foamboard for display in our growing art collection. Get as many additional prints as you desire to send to your family & friends. Have fun!

Uh… well… that’ll have to work. I’m not sure if I’ve done this right. Seems to be a little confusion as we have virtually the exact assignment in both the “Photography” and “Visual Literacy” Classes. I’ll get around to that “describing how you used these design principles” part later. When I went to do the card the way I actually wanted to I found I didn’t have and couldn’t get the images I wanted, the youth pictures of myself… so… I just tried to make something interesting, somewhat along the lines of what I had said. I’m not overly pleased with it, but, there you have it. Ho, Ho, Ho!

UPDATE: After already having done this once not at the wrong resolution for printing… here it is again at 300ppi… I think. And here’s the short “Report” we were supposed to write up… CLICK HERE.

“Short Report” still to come…

Eames Cards Design

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ASSIGNMENT: For this final assignment, you will begin to gather information and put together ideas for the Eames Card project due later this semester. You need to create an original series of ten images for front & back of five cards measuring 7 x 4 3/8″ (Leave a little extra – 1/8″? around the edges as room for error when mounting) Compose a blog post with example images, that demonstrates the planning & information gathering that you are doing towards creating your final ten images for the Eames Card Assignment.

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Planning and information gathering? Well… since, once again, I’m buried in assignments and this particular assignment is just a stupid precursor to the actual assignment; and combined with the fact I don’t give squat about Christmas. I plan on making something somewhat sarcastic and “untraditional.” I was thinking something EGYPTIAN for a theme, something relating to ”Horus.” Horus  was the Egyptian sun God (being the Sun) who amazingly had an enemy known as “Set.” Also amazingly he was born on December 25-th of the virgin Isis, his birth cooresponded with a “new” star in the East and when he was born he was adored by three kings. At the age of 12 he was an insightful, theological teacher and was baptized by Anup at age 30 and began his ministry. Horus had 12 deciples he traveled about with performing such miracles as healing illnesses and walking on water. He was called by many symbolic names such as the light, the TRUTH, the good Shepard, and many others you’re probably familiar with as well. Horus was betrayed by Typhon, crucified, buried for 3 days, and then miraculously resurrected. SOUND FAMILIAR?

Anyway… my plan was to design something with Horus somehow centered in the design with like… various photographs of me at different ages around him somehow… something like that. Maybe a few pentagrams scattered around here and there just for good measure. That’s the type of thing my family would expect from me, believe it or not, so… that’s the plan. Since I’ve had no time to do what I really want to do, due to… Here’s the “original series of ten images for front & back of five cards measuring 7 x 4 3/8″ as specified for this assignment…

(Well… there’s 4 of 5 anyway… now that I think about it… there’s at least 10 images in those… I’M DONE)

There you go… a little Gnosticism with a pinch of Sumerian lore, a little something kinda relating to “Ovid” there, I think that one is from the MALLEUS MALEFICARUM.” Anyway… my end project won’t be anything like these (most likely), but hey… an “original series of ten images for front & back of five cards” as specified… uhhh… almost.

Blog Magazine Assignment

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ASSIGNMENT: Visit a newsstand or the periodical section of the library. Make a visual selection of your three top most appealing magazine covers. Explain why you were drawn to these magazines and your thoughts on the use of cover space, the typography (photographs, if any), color usage, subject matter, and overall design? Would this cover enhance the likelihood of an impulse buy? Is it appealing beyond the expected reader demographic? Why?

I liked the first magazine (starting left), “Light Metal Age,” because it was a kind of a catchy, sort of abstract looking type of design. It wasn’t clear what it was, still isn’t actually, but it had a sort of “excitement” to it… 3 dimensional like it’s coming out at you…. fills the page and then some. I didn’t really pay any attention to the typography, not much to say about it really… simple, there’s a blue tint to some of the “rods” or whatever they are there, so I guess it goes along with that nicely. The blue and the off yellow (kind of orange yellow in some places, more orange in others) are complimentary… I guess that’s actually pretty much a “split compliment” there. Anyway… this one was my 1-st choice.

The next one I picked was the “Software Tech Briefs” magazine. Again, I was kind of drawn to this one because I have no idea what that is. Whatever it is it’s really bright, colorful, and lively. The blues are monochromatic and the yellow compliments the blue… guess that’s why the main title of the magazine is in yellow; then with the reds I guess that’s a triad. I noticed how the white text has a really subtle shadow to keep it from blending in with the whites of the design. The background helps the design to seem to cover the entire page and along with “whatever it is” being given space to move upward gives it an upward, diagonal sort of movement so it’s kind of dynamic, though not as dynamic as my first pick there.

The last one there… it was really simple but still an eye catcher, well, to me anyway. The colored bold lettering just has kind of an impact on the viewer. I guess because people tend to read EVERYTHING THEY SEE and these huge, bold letters kind of smack a person right in the brain, then the brain is like, “Wow, let’s see what’s up with this.” Then you have to look in more detail to organize what’s what thinking there must be more there than just an A and a B. Personally, I’d have made the subtitles a little larger font, at least 50% larger, or something because the text there really doesn’t have that impact that automatically move your eyes to it, you don’t really “SEE” it because the A and B are so dominant. The design fills the page but here again the fonts and placement of the text leaves it looking a little empty overall. The A and B were big eye catchers, but then what? It doesn’t really have that motion and direction to move you around the page.

As for the “Impulse Buy” aspect, to me anyway… the first one might inspire an impulse buy, even beyond it’s target demographic. Whatever that is, it looks pretty interesting… interesting enough to make a person want to know more. The second one… well… maybe, but not as much as the 1-st one. It’s a really interesting design and all, but, whatever it is there is just to “unfamiliar” to inspire the average to want to know more about what it is… it’s just not as dynamic as my first pick up there. The 3-rd one there… nope… not at all. While it may be an “attention getter” it’s just, well… “lifeless.” Unless you were specifically into something related to print, printing, something along that line, there’s nothing to inspire you to actually purchase this magazine.

November Art Rush

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I didn’t actually get to attend the November Art Rush on the 3-rd when everybody generally attends these things, but, I was able to go and see some of the exhibits around town on a later date.

I first went to the Salina Chamber of Commerce to view the exhibition of the Judd Patterson photographs. Judd Patterson is originally from Kansas, a K-State graduate even. The 1-st row of images above are from photographs I had taken, but if you would like to see better quality images, all of these can be found at http://www.juddpatterson.com in his “Kansas Prairies” portfolio.

As these exhibits are listed as “Kansas Photography” and I’ve never been to a photography exhibit before I was kind of expecting photographs, but upon arriving saw his photographs had been applied to canvas. The 1-st one above is titled “Search the Heavens,” followed by “Spring Prairie Flowers,” and lastly “Sea of Clouds.” I was amazed the kind of rich detail in color these had after applied to canvas, I mean, I’d have thought they would have lost “something” but they all had basically the same quality as actual photographs. Naturally, there’s a “designing” aspect to some of his works, such as “After the Storm” (not pictured here) where it was noted “several vertical photos were merged together” to form the final imagery. There was a quote from Judd which I could really relate to stating, “Sometimes photography is about proper preparation and just happening upon the right place at the right time…” I can’t count the photo ops I’ve missed out on because I didn’t have my camera handy or didn’t have the settings right or something of that nature and that perfect moment passed, I wasn’t adequately prepared at that right place and time and you can’t get that back. At any rate… I really enjoyed the Judd Patterson exibit.

Next I went to the Salina Public Library where the Mary Ann Tanking “Works of Summer” collection was being exhibited. Mary Ann is originally from Nebraska and comes from a very creative/artistic type of family noting her Grandfather, Father, Mother, and both her Brothers all had their own artistic talents of one form or another. Over her life she has attained a number of art related degrees and has worked as an art instructor here locally as well as teaching silversmithing and jewelry while at Kansas Wesleyan University, just to note a little of her extensive background.

The 2-nd row of images above are an assortment of some of Mary Ann’s acrylic works. The 2-nd one there is titled “Fire,” I think anyway, I should have wrote it down, but, I think that was it. Anyway… this was my favorite of the entire exhibit. You can’t really see it so well in this image but if you could see the actual brush strokes you’d see nearly everything below the horizon is extremely reminiscent of fire, even down in the smaller detail. I mean, yeah, the tree sort of resembles flames and overall you could get the impression the whole scene was flaming, but, to see it up close… well… you’d just have to see it, I guess.

Anyway… the 3-rd image there is titled “Pottawatomie Lake.” I really liked this one as well. I don’t really know what to say about it, it just really appealed to me… the lively colors and the way the trees all kind of weave together there… I just thought it was kind of awesome. Mary Ann had a variety of somewhat different styles of paintings and such on display. One of the things I had noted was something I later found at http://artspringsalina.com/tanking.html where there’s a short little bit about Mary in which it’s stated in the “Artist’s Statement,” “I go a step further in that sometimes a painting becomes so thick with texture that it appeals to the touch as well as the eye.” There were several smaller, acrylic works of hers on display in which I noted this quality. All in all, I really liked her works.

Next I went to the Smokey Hills Museum to revisit the “Crisscrossing Kansas” exhibit. I really don’t have much to say about it… yeah, I guess it might be interesting to some, but, to me… it’s just the same old type of thing I’ve seen around here my entire life. I liked the “Log Cabin” exhibit the best… there’s a photo of the inside above (very last photo in bottom row). That’s about all I’ve got to say on this one. I mean, yeah, it’s a great exhibit and all… just not my kind of thing, you know?

On my way home I passed some works I thought were noteworthy, some murals that were created by 1-st through 5-th grade students were on the wall of this building just off Santé Fe on 7-th. There was a little plate stating, “Salina Art Center, Murals created by First-Fifth Grade Students, SummerART 2007 Mural Madness, Kathy England, Instructor.” Anyway… there’s a couple images of those above as well (1-st 2 of the 3-rd row)… I thought they were “way cool,” so, there you have it. MY November Art Rush experience. I see next month’s is on a Saturday… I’ll actually be able to make that one at the time people are supposed to be there for “whatever.”