Category Archives: Media 1

The Best [er] of the Semester

I began this course as a film and screen oriented individual- only really having delved into the world of making and analysing films and a little bit of script writing on the side. I was dying to grow and develop my skills, expanding and delving deep into my love for media.
My wishes were heard.

Even though it is only semester 1, I have already began to develop skills that will get stronger as the degree passes on- skills that will contribute to me becoming an all rounded media practitioner.
I have been presented with unique opportunities where I could apply my learnings and the outcomes of my collaborative efforts to the project briefs- incorporating a combination of written work with audio and visual content to communicate meaning. Each opportunity allowed me to discover a new way of approaching media and/or develop vital skills.

Week 2 was the most important week of this semester. Not only did I feel like this whole thing was a little more real, but I was gifted with the noticing task, which was not only a great learning opportunity but it completely changed my perspective on media, myself and life.
I now notice the world around me in a different and richer way. I’ve noticed that I am at my happiest when I am doing something related to what I love, and that happens to be blogging.
I’ve noticed that I learn best when I can talk and communicate about it (which is a good sign seeing as this is a communications degree!).
I’ve noticed that ‘new isn’t always better’- archival footage is awesome and adds depth to media, no matter what form.
But most importantly, I’ve learnt to notice my abilities and the fact that Media is my jam, my groove. It allows me to rearrange and remix the crazy ideas that have been circulating my mind for years to produce something wonderful.
I felt like this was extremely evident from Week 7 onwards, when everything in my little brain rearranged- I felt confident in my creations and the words, ideas and connections where flowing out my eyes, ears and mouth.
I can happily confirm that this is the path I am meant to follow, the setting for my narrative.

Semester one has presented itself with not only vital learnings that have formed the foundation for the rest of the course and my involvement in the media industry, but with life long friends, collaborative partners and the discovery of my new passions and skills.
Just the other day, I found my Dear Future Me post. I already feel like I am well on my way to having achieved what I aimed to achieve in that first week of the course.

In classic Indi style, I shall leave you with a song that is relevant to my learnings and ramblings… S Club 7 with ‘Bring it all Back

Don’t stop, never give up, hold your head high and reach the top.
Let the world see what you have got, bring it all back to you!

Here are the best [er] of the semester, the blogs which indicate my little lightbulb moments and where the information started to click…

The best of…

Media 1 Lectorial 1
Media 1 Lecture 2
Media 1 Workshop 7
Media 1 Lecture 7
Media 1 Lecture 11

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Media 1 Workshop 8

Full steam ahead with Project Brief 4! Despite the fact that Samantha was unfortunately away due to illness, our group managed to power on; smashing out not only a contract, but a research plan and a pretty awesome hunt for articles…

We created our collaborative contract, being as specific as we could in these early days of the assignment. My group and I have worked really well together and there doesn’t seem to be any sight of collaborative conflict in the foreseeable future, but it is good to know that through the creation of the contract we have formulated a strategy that can be implemented if conflict was to occur.
We also began to brainstorm topics, issues and concepts related to our topic of ‘technology’. We came up with 3 main ideas; using technology as a method of creation, production and communication, as well as an umbrella theme of ‘power’ to tie our thoughts together. Technology gives individuals the power to create multi platform media, but technology also has the power to influence individuals physically and mentally.

I have already started to gather articles for my annotated bibliography- I am excited to start researching my topic and getting nitty gritty into the world of media and technology.
I am also super pleased with my group- we are on the ball, motivated and smart… what more could you want?!

Here is a relevant song: Daft Punk’s ‘Technologic

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Media 1 Workshop 7

In this week’s workshop, we presented our highly anticipated Project Brief 3 portraits. It was so interesting and inspiring to see how my peers represented their chosen subject through the use of various media. The stand-outs for me were those produced by Emily, Rose and Annie (Annie’s is embedded below); they all embraced different styles of presentation, yet I felt like I got to know their subject on a deeper level- who they are, what their story is and their individual characteristics.
When it came time to screen my film, I was overcome with emotion which made it difficult to give a brief overview of my portrait prior to its screening. I was proud of the finished product to an extent, I mean, it was a difficult thing to execute and I had trouble letting go of it, as I wanted to make him and my family proud.
I was really humbled by the reception of my portrait. I received some feedback on the positive aspects of my portrait, such as the themes weaved throughout and the incorporation of images from my Nonno/Grandfathers’s youth. My feedback group also highlighted that I could have included some photos of me with my grandfather that were a little more recent, to express that he was an important part of not only my childhood, but my teenage years too.
I was lucky enough to be in a group with Annie, who was also honouring her Nan who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. I am close friends with Annie, and we collaborated frequently throughout the PB3 creative process due to the similarity of our subjects and the circumstances surrounding the production of our portraits.
Her portrait was absolutely incredible. It encompassed so much emotion, but was presented in such a touching way. The highlight of her portrait visually was the layering of the time-lapse with the footage of Alice in Wonderland trapped in the Rabbit hole. It was such a creative way to exhibit the pain and helplessness that is felt and associated with degenerative mental conditions. The sound was also such a beautiful element of the portrait- it was so simple and expressed her Nan’s ability to remember a tune after hearing someone else sing a few lines.
Annie- you are amazing.

PB3 really made me think about songs that have a similar purpose as the portraits- depicting traits and behaviours of individuals. The song that came to mind was ‘Brianstorm‘ by Arctic Monkeys, which was written after the band had an encounter with a man [who they labelled Brian] left them ‘in awe of his presence’.
I’m also very glad this song came to mind, as I love it when I get to incorporate Alex Turner into anything 😀

Enjoy!

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Media 1 Lecture 7

The topic of this week’s lectorial sounded interesting when it was mentioned last week, but to an extent. I mean for the past however many years, text has meant or been a part of two things…

1) Textbook- that dreaded pile of paper that has headaches hidden in the first page of every chapter

2) A text message- a little bit better than a textbook; especially if its from Grandma who signs hers off with a little frog emoji #bless

It wasn’t until I delved into the readings that I remembered the real meaning of the word text.. ‘Material traces that are left of the practice of sense-making – the only empirical evidence we have of how other people make sense of the world’– Alan McKee

I was reminded of the fact that the way we read, interpret and receive texts influences our understanding of their intentions and meanings. I am one of those people who is constantly looking for the deeper meaning in songs, movies, photographs, conversations… I love it and it was part of the reason I chose to enter the world that I now call home- the world of Media (beginning in VCE)

In G.Branston & R.Stafford’s ‘Approaching Media Texts’ (Ch.1) in The Media Student’s Book, I was reminded of Semiotics- a theory of signs that can be used to explain how texts work to produce meanings and how they come to have such significance. This reading also built on my knowledge of connotations and associations as elements of semiotics- Denotation is the literal or first order meaning, whilst connotation is the cultural or second order meaning.
For the word Text, the denotation of text could be something ‘written or printed’, most likely referring to words.
The connotation of text, the cultural meaning would be ‘SMS’… “I got a text from Annie today…”
Inception of ideas…

The second reading, Victor Burgin’s ‘Looking at Photographs’ (Ch.6) from Thinking Photography, was relevant to a task I had just finished for my Cinema Studies class- shot analysis. The ideas presented through this reading were the finishing touches to those already inside my head- his words were highlighted the fact that a photograph can tell 1000 words, just like a shot from a film; each pixel or second is filled with so much meaning.

I will conclude this blog with a quote from my legendary friend Emily Mitrevski

Text is the tissue of today’s society and the fabric of our communication with others – seen through film, photographs, recordings. it’s what binds humanity together in an existential way.
-Emily Mitrevski

I am so glad that I met her- we have been such an awesome collaborative team- Annie, her and I- not only for uni projects, but just in general life.
I guess thats what friends are for… :’) ❤

Project Brief 3- William

I aimed to focus on the attributes possessed by my late grandfather, William Marchiori, to create a portrait in his honour. He was known for his kind and caring nature, passion for motor sports and his large hands. I chose to open with a segment focussed solely on his hands; as they were not only the first thing people noticed about him, but are metaphorically representative of his kind and giving nature. He was not only passionate about helping others, but he deeply loved all things motor related; both the mechanics and the driving. I was lucky enough to gather photos from his motor accident, which I scanned and made into a GIF, which created a link between the photographic and filmic elements of my film. I decided to finish with a focus on his family, especially myself and my brother who were his only grandkids. He was so influential in our lives and I felt that it was appropriate to show his love for his family.
The sound of a heartbeat builds throughout the course of the film. The volume is representative of the ups and downs he encountered due to his failing heart. At the end of the portrait, I accompany the heartbeat fading with the sound of the car engine turning off to express that it was due to the engine of his body (the heart) stopping that he passed away.

I struggled with the fact that I was unable to film new material as my subject has passed on, but my family were helpful and sent through photos and videos that I could incorporate into the portrait. I was pleased with how well the archival footage worked with the pre-existing material. Using archival footage is not something I am familiar with and I was afraid it would create a sense of static, but I believe it created depth.
Collaborating with my peers also assisted the overall quality and outcome, as I was able to get feedback that in the end, enhanced and developed my ideas to allow for them to be presented as well as they possibly could be.

William- A Portrait from India Weaver on Vimeo.

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Media 1 Workshop 6

This week we discussed our ideas for Project Brief 3; who we were planning to portray and what aspects of their personality/story we aim to express through our multi-media masterpieces.
As discussed last week, I plan to do my Nonno who recently passed away. I found it tough to talk to the class about how i planned to portray him as I am still recovering from the loss. However, I am looking extremely forward to putting the finishing touches on the film as I want to honour him in the best way possible. I plan to fish through my home movie archive this week to try and find the footage of when my he taught my brother to drive the go kart, which Nonno made himself.
It was a really special moment, especially now as I look back on it- because he never had the opportunity to teach either of us to drive, except for that day.

It was interesting to hear what my peers planned to do for their portraits and how they planned to execute it. I am looking particularly forward to seeing Annie’s, as she is doing a portrait to honour someone close to her heart; her Nan who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. I know she will do an amazing job- Annie is so talented and has an amazing ability to work messages into her work in such a unique and deep way.

I am listening to a lot of music to try and even out the feels of stress, sadness and happiness that Project Brief 3 has brought along with it. At the moment I am obsessing over Mac Demarco, even more than I have been for the past year or so.
My current favourite song is ‘Freaking Out the Neighbourhood‘ and I will hopefully be doing a Saturday Spotlight on him in a few weeks time! Stay tuned boys and girls!

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Media 1 Lecture 5

“Group genius comes from improvised collaboration”- Keith Sawyer, The Creative Power of Collaboration

This weeks lectorial was partially focussed on Project Brief 3- a portrait of another person. After reading the brief and hearing Brian talk about ideas and tips, I was extremely eager to begin writing.
Subject: My Grandfather who recently passed away.
He lived such an incredible life and was such an amazing individual- what better way to honour him?
I wrote down my ideas and turned to talk to my peers about them, and what I experienced was the amazing outcome of a creative collaboration. We were bouncing ideas off each other; sharing thoughts, asking questions, inspiring each other and helping each other to plan the best possible portraits they could.
Keith Sawyer, the author of one of this weeks readings- The Creative Power of Collaboration, says that ‘group flow is more likely to emerge when everyone is fully engaged”, and my collaborative group were more than engaged- we were heavily involved and extremely interested in each other’s ideas.
Despite the fact that this course, and our assignments, could be viewed as a competition (the best stands out), we were more than willing to stop and creatively collaborate- building networks and helping each other out.

Hopefully my plans for Project Brief 3 can be followed, but as suggested, I have back-up options in mind.

I’ll leave you now with a link to a musical collaboration..
Despite my fear of David Bowie (the Labyrinth is NOT a kids movie OKAY?!), he is one half of one of the greatest musical collaborations of all time- Dancing in the Street with Mick Jagger

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Self-Portrait- Project Brief 2

Creating this self-portrait was similar to the ‘noticing’ activity we did a few weeks ago, but this time I was ‘noticing’ myself; it became an opportunity for me to be reminded of who really I am.
My distracted nature is one of the first things people notice about me, hence why it is presented at the beginning. I layered my portrait with rippling water, as water is quite symbolic in my life. Not only does it add a sense of fluidity, but it represents an important remedy in my life- I immerse myself in water when I get too emotional or afraid; a cleansing mechanism. Blue is the colour of Aquarius- my star sign and it ‘reflects my tendency to fly into blue skies of dreams’ further representing my daydreaming tendencies. Water also represents a flow and sense of balance, which is also explored through the photo of my hand holding up an open book. The image isn’t just representative of my openness; it is an artistic choice to not have two hands holding up the book, as I use one hand to support others and the other hand to keep myself and my emotions steady.
The image of the cliff and bend represents of my fear of the unknown whilst the Fleetwood Mac album placed onto of the map highlights my fear of becoming a ‘follower’- I would rather “Go [My] Own Way”.
“I refuse to follow, I refuse to be a reflection” is an expression of my wishes to be my own self and to not conform to the expectations of society. I chose to edit “I refuse to be a reflection” repetitively so it could become a mantra. The sound of the flipping book and writing in a notebook in conjunction with the time-lapse communicates that I will write my own book, a new page each day.
I felt that the overall aesthetic of my portrait could have been cleaner, but I was really pleased with the way the time-lapse turned out, as it was my first time exploring the feature in its full form.

REFERENCES
http://www.whats-your-sign.com/zodiac-symbols-for-aquarius.html

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