Monthly Archives: January 2015

My Reflection on Photography

I absolutely LOVE photography. I am the annoying friend who always wants to stop for a picture. My friends are just used to it by now. In high school, I took four years of photography and absolutely loved it. Plus I had an incredible teacher, so that definitely made the experience even more enjoyable. I also love traveling, so whenever I travel my eye is behind the lens of my Nikon D3100 also known as my baby. I treat my camera like it’s royalty. My camera goes on every trip with me. I mainly use my iPhone when I am out and about on a daily basis. I am guilty of taking “too many” photos. Haha! I am also one of those who has a hard time deleting things. I take pictures of everything. I don’t have one specific thing or a specific category. I am by no means a professional photographer. I don’t aspire to be, I take pictures simply because I love taking pictures.

Here are some of my pictures, they are also uploaded on flickr:

This picture was taken in Israel in 2011.

Israel 2011

These pictures were taken in the Negev Desert in Israel in 2011.

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This picture was taken at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, Israel in 2012.

Israel 2012

This picture was taken at Humpback Rock in Charlottesville in 2013.

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This picture was taken at Wintergreen in 2014.

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Those are just some of my many photos, throughout the semester I will be uploading more to flickr!

I learned a lot by reviewing the resources that were given to us this week! There is always room for learning and I love to explore and discover other people’s work.

I really liked how the Becoming a Better Photographer Lesson included this quote by Ansel Adams: “There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs.” This is one of my absolute favorite quotes because it’s so true. Everyone is individual and unique just like every photo is individual and unique. There are no rules.

I watched Storytelling & Visual Literacy, a video by Jason Eskenazi. I really liked how Jason Eskenazi explained how you are changing something that is 3-dimensional to be 2-dimensional. Taking something and making it flat. I never thought about it this way, but that is a very interesting way of looking at it. Photos are art and there is no explanation. I like how he said visual literacy is something we are born with. I think that that is true because everyone see’s everything differently.

I loved the Story Behind the iconic “Migrant Mother” Photograph and how Dorothea Lange Almost Didn’t Take ItIt is such an amazing picture and I am glad that she decided to take it because it made history. All of her work captures the person impeccably.

I read Learn the Rules of Film Noir & How to Light It by Justin Morrow. I learned a lot from this article. I learned that:

  • low key lighting is important
  • the use of harsh shadows is very noir
  • contrasts of black and white are used

I took a look at Henri Cartier-Bresson’s Photography online. I loved the shadows in his photos. I liked how they were taken during the day, so the contrast looks really good. The depth of field is awesome and captures the subject in a creative way.

I enjoyed reviewing all of these resources. It helped me to see other people’s work and get a better idea of noir photography. I also learned a lot from these resources.

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The Daily Create: Make 2048!

The daily create assignment for today was to make your own 2048 game. I used to be addicted to 2048. I would play it ALL the time. It was bad. Haha! I decided to make 2048: Lilly Pulitzer edition because I wanted to see bright colors. All of the Lilly Pulitzer prints bring a smile to my face and brighten my day! Want to play?

2048: Lilly Pulitzer Edition

 

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The Daily Create: Droodle at a meeting (or elsewhere)

The daily create assignment for today was to droodle at a meeting (or elsewhere). What is a droodle?

 

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“Droodles was a syndicated cartoon feature created by Roger Price and collected in his 1953 bookDroodles. The trademarked name “Droodle” is a nonsense word suggesting “doodle”, “drawing” and “riddle.” Wikipedia.”

That was the example given in our daily create assignment. So basically a doodle.

This may sound pretty weird, but my planner is basically my life and I am obsessed with it. I write literally EVERYTHING that has to be done/important things/stupid things/whatever, it’s in my planner. So, I decided to doodle. I also LOVE quotes so I decided to incorporate my doodle with quotes to keep myself positive. I just kind of started doodling once I started looking at my work for the week. It’s not anything amazing, but here is my doodle…

Droodle

Week Two Summary

Week two definitely went a lot better than week one did for me. I was able to post things without struggling to figure out how to do it. I also got the hang of how to do new things. I have really enjoyed seeing everyones tweets on twitter. I downloaded TweetDeck, which has made Twitter SO much easier. If you haven’t already downloaded it, I highly recommend it. It has helped me immensely this week. I also felt a lot more connected this week!

I found @jimgroom’s tweet to be very true after doing this week’s work. There was a lot of work, but it was a lot of fun! Even though it was fun and enjoyable, it is still work!

I can also relate to @miaboleis’s tweet…I HAVE SO MANY TABS OPEN it’s not even funny!

Readings:

This week, we were assigned to read several pieces of noir.

The required piece for this week is “The Postman Always Rings Twice” by James M. Cain. This piece was pretty racist in my opinion. There was a lot of stereotyping happening in the beginning. At the end of Chapter 2, things took a turn and I could definitely see how noir is a theme in this piece. The piece was very descriptive with vivid imagery, so I could almost picture it. The vocabulary was very much outdated, but it did a good job of putting an imagine in my mind while I was reading. It gets pretty violent at point and the story line is very strange. It’s actually a very twisted piece. The later half of the piece and the ending really threw me for a loop. It is a piece unlike anything I have ever read before. After reading this piece, I can definitively see how noir is tied in and how this piece is written in a style of noir.

This week, we also had to read a couple of choice pieces from a list. When choosing these pieces, I looked to see which titles seemed intriguing to me. Then, I skimmed the first few pages to make sure I picked something I would enjoy reading. For the first choice piece, I chose to read “The Shadow” which is a script for The Death Triangle episode starring Orson Welles. This script was written in December of 1937. I like how the script gives very vivid descriptions on what is happening, what is being heard, etc. These very vivd descriptions are incorporated into the script and give the reader a sense of what it is like to be there. I found it very creepy how The Shadow was dictating Dr. Evans. The Shadow was used in multiple ways. The Shadow was a character in the episode, but The Shadow is also a figurative way of denoting something is there. In a way (though it’s a different form) it’s kind of like a hostage situation. I found it very creepy how at the end the script stated that “the shadow knows…”. Creepy! The plot/story line was all over the place and it seemed to be very twisted, like the other story I read. For the second choice piece, I chose to read “The Killers” by Ernest Hemingway. This piece was written in March of 1927. The language in this piece is very vulgar and racist. I did not like this piece at all. It made me very uncomfortable. It seemed to me that they were doing things for absolutely no reason or the background reason wasn’t given. When they do give a reasoning it is like a “just because…” I was glad that even though the title suggests killing, nobody was actually killed in this piece unlike the other pieces I read. This piece was definitely less gruesome, but still descriptive.

We also had to choose one of the stories from the fiction section of the Noir issue of Shenandoah Literacy. I chose to read “Driftwood” by Michael Caleb Tasker. The language in this piece was very vulgar. When I was reading there would just casually be a curse word when I least expected. The term “drifters” in this piece is referring to homeless people who are “drifting” or wandering. This was a very complex and hard to read piece, in my opinion. I found myself to be very lost at points. I liked the descriptions a lot, but I was slightly confused.

I see a common theme among all of these noir readings. They are very twisted. Killing (each other) also seems to be a common theme. All of the pieces are very descriptive. When I was reading them, I felt like I was there. I liked reading these noir pieces, they definitely got me thinking, but they are not my type of reading style. I still enjoy discovering them.

 

Character Dossier: 

Creating my character dossier, Shirley Mayfield was one of the most enjoyable things on the list of things to do this week. I had a lot of fun exploring my creative side and making my own original femme fatale character.

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You can find Shirley’s full biography and story on my blog. I hope you enjoy meeting her!

 

Assignments:

For one of my week two assignments, I chose to do the assignment, Sharing a Book that was submitted by Ana Muñoz de Rivera Blasco. I am in the Elementary Education program at the University of Mary Washington. Last semester, I was assigned to write a children’s book. If you would like to see the book, I have uploaded it to flickr as well as posted it in my blog. I hope you enjoy! The book is entitled Never Give Up!

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For one of my week two assignments, I chose to do the assignment, 1o Seconds of Thanks that was submitted by Ben Rimes.

The assignment is to “1. Using a timer, write what you’re thankful for in just 10 seconds! Anything and everything that you can think of being thankful for is fair game, but stop at 10 seconds.
2. Share what you’ve written on a blog, wiki, or some other digital space that others can comment on.”

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I really enjoyed doing this assignment because it made me aware of how much I have to be thankful for. I need reminders sometimes. I also like how I did it on a post-it note, so I am able to put it in my planner to serve as a daily reminder. I need to remember how blessed I truly am even though life isn’t perfect, there is always something to be thankful for.

For one of my week two assignments, I decided to make an alternate ending to  “The Shadow” which is a script for The Death Triangle episode starring Orson Welles. This script was written in December of 1937. I like how the script gives very vivid descriptions on what is happening, what is being heard, etc. These very vivd descriptions are incorporated into the script and give the reader a sense of what it is like to be there. To read the alternate ending, check out my blog!

For one of my week two assignments, I decided to do the Tell Us About Your Future Life assignment that was submitted by Alison Thoet. I decided to do this assignment for the assignment that had to deal with our character dossier. I remixed this assignment to make it about Shirley Mayfield’s life instead of my own. To read about Shirley’s future, check out my blog!

 

The Daily Creates:

I do have to say some of the daily create assignments really make me uncomfortable. I had a really tough time picking which assignments to do this week, but after thinking about it, I realized that I need to jump outside of my comfort zone. These assignments are meant to get people thinking and make people show their creative side. I really jumped out of my comfort zone this week when I completed the yodeling assignment. I would NEVER do something like this, but this class is teaching me that it is important to realize that you can do something and we are all in the same boat, so it is okay.

The Daily Create Assignment on Wednesday 1-21-2015 was to make a cat, on synthesizer, in space.  At first I was like what on earth? Then I was like oh whatever, just go with it. I would never even have thought about a cat being on a synthesizer in space until I took this class, but hey whatever works haha! So, I present to you…a cat on a synthesizer in space…

A cat on a synthesizer in space

The Daily Create Assignment on Thursday 1-22-2015 was to record myself yodeling. I do have to say, this is quite possibly the weirdest thing I have ever recorded. I definitely stepped out of my comfort zone to do this. I almost thought about skipping this daily create, but I wanted to do something that I wouldn’t normally do. I don’t think that I ever would have done something like this until I took this class. Here is my awful yodel haha… #Idon’tgiveayodel

Only at UMW…

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The Daily Create Assignment for Friday 1-23-2015 was to make an eye selfie. When I saw the assignment I was like make an eye selfie? Okay! So I got out my Nikon and started trying. It was a bit hard at first because I have never taken an eye selfie, but once I got the settings all set, I was ready to go! Here is my eye selfie…

Eye Selfie

 

This week, I enjoyed receiving comments on my blog posts as well as commenting on the blogs of my fellow classmates. The comments that I received really brightened my day! Here are some of the comments:

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I also enjoyed figuring out twitter a little better by using TweetDeck and favoriting, retweeting, and responding to the tweets of my fellow classmates and professors. I even used twitter to get help when a link wasn’t working for me.

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This week’s posts by yours truly:

I also updated my Meet Stephanie page on my blog!

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That’s all for now!

Stephanie

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Happily Never After?

The assignment is to write an alternate ending to a novel, movie, short story, poem, etc. What else can I say but make it damn good! This assignment is work three points.

I decided to make an alternate ending to  “The Shadow” which is a script for The Death Triangle episode starring Orson Welles. This script was written in December of 1937. I like how the script gives very vivid descriptions on what is happening, what is being heard, etc. These very vivd descriptions are incorporated into the script and give the reader a sense of what it is like to be there. I found it very creepy how The Shadow was dictating Dr. Evans. The Shadow was used in multiple ways. The Shadow was a character in the episode, but The Shadow is also a figurative way of denoting something is there. In a way (though it’s a different form) it’s kind of like a hostage situation. I found it very creepy how at the end the script stated that “the shadow knows…”. Creepy! The plot/story line was all over the place and it seemed to be very twisted, like the other story I read.

 

This excerpt is from the script The Death Triangle from “The Shadow”

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I begin my alternate ending after this excerpt.

Manservant: He doesn’t appear to be, I haven’t seen him in a few.

Margot: Oh, that’s incredibly odd.

Manservant: I’d say the same

Margot: Well, I guess I’ll go looking for him.

*As Margot exits the home, she sees his car leave the driveway, headed north at a high speed*

*Margot needs to catch up, so she jumps in a car that she found on the street. The keys were conveniently inside and she is scared because her neighbor is the owner and they aren’t on good terms*

Margot comes in contact with THE SHADOW.

She gets super scared.

THE SHADOW overtakes Margot and holds her hostage.

The Shadow: If Dr. Evans comes to save you I will kill you both.

Margot: No, please. Just kill me.

The Shadow: I will kill both of you and then everyone else who comes in contact with me.

Margot: No, take me and call it quits.

The Shadow: Not going to happen, but wishful thinking.

*Dubrille and Corvet go out on a search for Margot and Dr. Evans who are nowhere to be found*

Dubrille: Where do you think we will find them?

Corvet: I haven’t a clue. Let’s check the house.

Dubrille: I doubt they are there.

Corvet: If we can find one of them there is hope in finding the other.

Dubrille: Let’s start there.

*Dubrille and Corvet go to the house and nobody is in sight, not even the servant*

*THE SHADOW kills both of them*

*Margot is freaking out, THE SHADOW continues to threaten her*

*THE SHADOW kills Dr. Evans and then makes Margot live with him forever*

 

I wanted to change the ending and give it a similar, but different twist because that is how I felt about the reading as a whole. I felt that it was very twisted. I decided to have THE SHADOW kill Corvet, Dubrille, and Dr. Evans making it a Death Triangle, but in a different way. Three people are killed and they whole ending is sketchy, but The Shadow lives on. The mysterious shadow lives on.

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Shirley Mayfield’s Future Life

For one of my week two assignments, I decided to do the Tell Us About Your Future Life assignment that was submitted by Alison Thoet. I decided to do this assignment for the assignment that had to deal with our character dossier. I remixed this assignment to make it about Shirley Mayfield’s life instead of my own.

The assignment is to “write out the history of your future life as if you were featured in a textbook. Make it about college life and what you want to pursue afterward!” I decided to remix it and make it about Shirley Mayfield’s future life and what she wants to pursue after finding the perfect man for her. This assignment is worth three points.

Here is Shirley Mayfield’s future life in textbook form.

Shirley Mayfield found the perfect husband and about a year after getting married, she got pregnant. When Shirley and Richard got married, everything fell into place. He was treating her like a princess and they were the perfect couple. Shirley had worked at her family business up until she got pregnant. Once she got pregnant, her husband decided it was time for her to focus on getting ready to be a mom and then after that she could be a stay at home mom. Richard got another job so that Shirley would be able to stay at home. After loving parenthood, they decided to have more children. After having four beautiful children to take care of, Shirley and Richard lived happily ever after. Their kids were growing like weeds and Richard and Shirley stayed busy all the time. They were able to live a lovely life. Richard eventually retired and they bought a vacation home big enough to hold their whole family.

 

I wanted to give Shirley a happy ending because her childhood had some very rough spots. I went with a story like her own because that is how she aspired to live her life.

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10 Seconds of Thankfulness

For one of my week two assignments, I chose to do the assignment, 1o Seconds of Thanks that was submitted by Ben Rimes.

The assignment is to “1. Using a timer, write what you’re thankful for in just 10 seconds! Anything and everything that you can think of being thankful for is fair game, but stop at 10 seconds.
2. Share what you’ve written on a blog, wiki, or some other digital space that others can comment on.” This assignment is worth 2.5 points.

I got out a post-it note because I knew since I only had 10 seconds I would not be able to fit that much. I set the timer for 10 seconds and started writing. When the timer went off I was like dang that was fast! It goes by a lot quicker than you think. I wasn’t able to get too much on the post-it note, but it made me realize that I have SO much to be thankful for and a lot of times I forget how much I actually have to be thankful for.

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I am very thankful for family. They are ALWAYS there for me and they continue to support me everyday. I don’t know what I would do without them.

I am so thankful for all of the friendships that I have, I don’t know what I would do without my friends.

I am so thankful to have a home. A place to call home. A roof over my head. Food and water. Essentials that some people can’t have. I’m also lucky to have such a nice place to live at school. I am truly blessed.

I am also incredibly lucky to have three amazing part-time jobs. I am lucky to have such amazing co-workers and an amazing family to nanny for.

I am also SO thankful for life. I love the life I am living. There are ups and downs but I am so thankful to be here and be living an awesome life. I am working towards doing what I have always dreamed about. I am working towards becoming an elementary school teacher so I can spread my passion for learning with others. There are SO many things that I am thankful for!

I really enjoyed doing this assignment because it made me aware of how much I have to be thankful for. I need reminders sometimes. I also like how I did it on a post-it note, so I am able to put it in my planner to serve as a daily reminder. I need to remember how blessed I truly am even though life isn’t perfect, there is always something to be thankful for.

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Never Give Up!

For one of my week two assignments, I chose to do the assignment, Sharing a Book that was submitted by Ana Muñoz de Rivera Blasco.

The assignment is to “Share a free book in internet that you have wrote. That’s sharing knowledge too, specially if it has some historical research as this one has.” This assignment is worth 2.5 points.

I am in the Elementary Education program at the University of Mary Washington. Last semester, I was assigned to write a children’s book. I am a pretty creative person, however I can’t draw at all, so when this children’s book was assigned I freaked out a little bit. I kept thinking throughout the semester about what I would do. I would come up with ideas, but none of them were “aha” moments for me. I wanted to write about something that had meaning to me. I had a really rough semester. I spent the semester back and forth to Lynchburg every weekend with my family because my uncle was near the end of his life. A week before he passed away, he told me something that I will never forget and I finally had my “aha” moment with my children’s book. As a child, I had a really hard time believing in myself. I am lucky enough to have an extremely close family and growing up, being the second youngest out of five cousins on my dad’s side, I found it harder to believe in myself because my cousins were big role models who I felt, set the bar high. I always had my aunts and uncles believing in me. I lost my aunt to cancer when I was 14 years old and it was devastating. We were extremely close and I have always wished she could still be here with me to see all of my accomplishments. A week before my uncle passed away I was telling him goodnight one night and he grabbed my hands and put mine between is and he said I want to tell you something. (In my mind, I am thinking whatever you’re about to say is going to make me cry) He said something that brought me to absolute tears and then he said another thing that I will never forget. He told me he wants me to stay in school and keep making him proud. He told me to continue to follow my dreams and I will always make him proud no matter what. He said he was sorry he would never be able to see me graduate which really breaks my heart. When he said that, I realized that I do believe in myself. I am absolutely devastated that I lost my uncle, but I know that they will always be with me. I chose to write a story called Never Give Up. In the story, the little girl’s name is Blair and she is Miss White’s student. In the book, both Blair and Miss White are me. Blair is me (Stephanie Blair White) as a child because I had a hard time believing in myself, but I had people telling me I can do anything I put my mind to. Also, Miss White is me because I will continue to follow my dreams and become a teacher and be able to tell students I believe in them and I believe that they can do anything they put their minds to. I hope that this will impact some people because I needed those people in my life telling me I could do it. I kind of went with my own style of both writing and illustrating, but I did get some ideas from Lauren Child, illustrator of the Charlie and Lola series because she uses multiple media forms. I included something three-dimensional. I used eyeballs on the characters. I used tissue paper for the background. I used it for the grass and the track. I used stamps on every single page. I also used the same stamps on each page, the butterfly and the fish, which represent to me that my aunt and uncle are always there for me. It is just a reminder. I also used stickers and scrapbook paper throughout the book. I used various colors to give the book a “pop”. I put the writing in rainbow order. I also used different fonts of my own for typology that stands out. I also switched up the placement of the typology throughout the book. I present to you…Never Give Up! , an original story by me!

 

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I also uploaded my book to my flickr page

I hope you enjoyed!

Stephanie

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The Daily Create: Make an eye selfie

The Daily Create Assignment for Friday 1-23-2015 was to make an eye selfie. When I saw the assignment I was like make an eye selfie? Okay! So I got out my Nikon and started trying. It was a bit hard at first because I have never taken an eye selfie, but once I got the settings all set, I was ready to go! Here is my eye selfie…

Eye Selfie

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The Daily Create: You? Yodel? Yep!

The Daily Create Assignment for today was to record myself yodeling. I do have to say, this is quite possibly the weirdest thing I have ever recorded. I definitely stepped out of my comfort zone to do this. I almost thought about skipping this daily create, but I wanted to do something that I wouldn’t normally do. I don’t think that I ever would have done something like this until I took this class. Here is my awful yodel haha… #Idon’tgiveayodel

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