Monthly Archives: November 2016

Animation is Not Child’s Play

I enjoy watching animations, but making one never even crossed my mind until now. For my multimedia class, we have been assigned to make a really short and very simple animation. At first I thought, our professor really have very low expectations of us, because she said “Just make anything that moves!”  Well after making my very first one, (which btw, took me over 3 days to plan and play around in Adobe Photoshop and Animation) I think she knows it’s not that easy so she was really giving us a chance to get our feet wet.

Incorporating a story into my animation was my plan. My initial idea was to create an animation centered on Autumn. I love fall and I think it would be colorful and fun. But after reading and watching several tutorials that idea tanked. It has to be something simple so back to the drawing board, literally.

My animation centered on a quote by Barbara Haines Howett, which I have typed in error in the animation as “Just when the caterpillar thought it was over…”  😦 it should be: “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over…”.  But I won’t be too hard on myself at this point, my eyes are tired and I am happy to render that video and publish it!  I’ll shut-up and let you see it now, all 10 seconds of it! Enjoy!

I also made a GIF out of the video

https://gifs.com/gif/frame-animation-2R2poK

During my research I came across this article that lists 15 of the coolest stop motion videos on you tube. You have to see it, they’re super cool! Below is one of them. Happy watching!

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Wish Upon A Star

Have you ever wished upon a star? I have, and even now, during difficult times I still do. This started when I was 7 or 8 years old, after watching an animation called Pinocchio. The song ‘When You wish Upon A Star‘ was playing at the beginning of the movie. I like music and listen intently to both melody and lyrics. The song struck a chord and the lyrics was planted in my mind. It has helped see me through some of life’s challenges and made me believe that if I put your heart in my dreams (together with faith, perseverance, and hard work of course) that my dreams will come true.

Pinochio photo c/o Pixabay
Pinocchio the wooden boy photo c/o Pixabay

The movie is about a lonely woodworker who created a wooden puppet (marionette) he named Pinocchio. One night he saw a wishing star and he wish for the puppet to became a real boy so he could have a son. The Blue fairy heard and granted his wish; the fairy also assigned a cricket named Jiminy to be the boy’s conscience. Pinocchio being a young and naive got into a lot of trouble. There were some scary scenes but the movie has a happy ending.

Long nose with JIminy Cricket
Long nosed  Pinocchio with Jiminy Cricket photo c/0 Pixabay

I remember vividly that when Pinocchio tell lies that his nose would grow long, the more lies, the longer it grew and when he smoked and had the “drink” that he turned into an ass! Those were powerful messages to a little kid!  That something bad will happen when you lie or do something you’re not supposed to. Eventually as I got older, I would learn that lying really doesn’t make my nose grow long and that imbibing occasionally is fine :). But I’ve come to realize the moral of the story; not being truthful has a lot of consequences and that eventually the truth would come out. There were other lessons in this great animation besides honesty like selflessness, obedience and bravery. Pinocchio has enhanced my life maybe in more ways than I even realize. For me it is an uplifting story that should be shared with young children so they too can wish upon their star.

 

 

 

las lajas sanctuary

Citizen of the World

With the advancement of technology people are more connected than ever. We are no longer just citizens of one country where we are only aware of whatever is happening in our own backyard or region. We are now citizens of the world. However, it still requires some active participation. Unlimited information is available for those who are interested. A quick Google search on a country will produce limitless results. Books in any format are also available for purchase at online bookstores or to borrow from the local libraries. However, I have found the quality of these results can vary from useful to irrelevant. It takes a practiced eye and good luck to separate the gem from the junk.
The country I have chosen as an entry into the H2G2 assignment is Colombia. Located at the tip of South America and flanked between the Caribbean and Pacific Ocean, this beautiful country surprised us during our short visit last year. After a few months visiting neighboring countries in Central America, we were not expecting any big adjustments, after all Colombia is also a Latin country like the rest we have visited so far.

T pictured with a Botero sculpture in Medellin,Colombia.
T pictured by a Fernando Botero (whose hometown is Medellin) sculpture in Plaza Botero, Colombia.

We were surprised to arrive at a modern, vibrant and inviting city of Medellin, Colombia. The residents are happy, warm and friendly. Even though we have only just arrived, we felt welcomed and at ease. They are genuinely beautiful people. After spending just one day in the city, I declared to my husband “I love this city, I want to come back again soon”. To be honest, the thought of living in the country even crossed my/our minds. The country fascinated me so much hence my decision to research it further.

My Husband and I at the Exploration Park in Medellin.
With my husband at Parque Explora (an interactive science museum) in Medellin. Btw, my husband is 6’2”, I’m 5’3″. I am finally taller than him!

My view of the country has not changed with my research; in fact, it made me nostalgic. Hearing songs and reading stories left me with a longing to be back and explore the country further. Here is a story I read about four foreigners talking about how they fell in love with Colombia. I know I’m not alone, others who have been there felt the magic in Colombia too.

I will share more about Colombia on a website that I am working on as part of my Multimedia project. Link will be posted here once it is up and running.

Creating A Video

Next Multimedia Class assignment:  to create a video on Universal Design and/or STEAM! How hard can it be? It should be a piece of cake right? Our professor said the video should be between 30 seconds to 3 minutes long. Others in class were asking “Is that enough time?” After taking an initial stab at it, I can definitely say that the time she gave us is more than enough! Creating a video that is interesting and with enough content to keep an audience engaged for over a minute is not that easy. Now I wish I paid more attention to the YouTube stars!

I was initially going to create a video on cooking as a science and art. But changed my mind and decided to focus on our beautiful campus instead. Peninsula College’s setting is just extraordinary. It is nestled on the foothills of the Olympic Mountains and overlooks the Strait of San Juan De Fuca in the Pacific ocean.  On a clear day, we can see Victoria BC from our parking lot. Just stunning!

This is our view at school on a sunny day! Photo c/o
This is our view at school on a sunny day! Photo c/o Peninsula College website

So, armed with my handy-dandy iPhone 5S, (which is without service btw) I started shooting video clips of the school, paying particular attention to thoughtful incorporation of universal design. I have taken about 40-50 video clips that are between 2 to 12 seconds long. I was creating the video on my mind, but have also jotted down ideas on a yellow pad (see below).

yellow-pad-notes
The yellow pad (the color did not transfer upon scanning) contains my scribbles.

Watching video tutorials on YouTube (who doesn’t nowadays!) was the next step. They made it all look easy! I then uploaded the video clips on to YouTube with the setting all on private. And that was the end of the easy part. Each of the video clips required adjustments! I have to reduce the shake, clip the clip (ha, I like that), add transition (not really needed but hey I love the punishment). Then I have to choose a background music. Who knew there are hundreds upon hundreds of sound effects and songs in various genres to choose from? I am only using songs that are free or attribution free so I don’t get sued. And I want to be respectful of other’s intellectual property. I initially chose a Tchaikovsky song played by the Russian Symphony Orchestra,  but it was way too dramatic. So I chose another song.

It was going well until I mistakenly hit on a button then the video was created. What a mess. I am not finished with the annotations and titles and don’t want to start all over again. 😦  I searched for a solution, according to YouTube, I can still annotate the video. However, the annotation will not appear on Chromeless players or mobile and tablet devices which kinda suck 😦 but I can’t be choosy since I made the mistake. So after several days the video is done! See for yourself, click on the title: Peninsula College – Designed for You.

Thanks for reading, with the video finished maybe now I can sleep.