Month: April 2018

Folk Is Female

This week’s assignment turned into a photo essay with a few videos and a Spotify playlist at the end. I thoroughly¬†enjoyed learning more about women in folk music and have left this assignment being inspired by these singer/songwriters.

I used Sutori for my assignment, and I would highly recommend it. It was easy to use and I believe helped me create a powerful essay. There were a few things I wish I could have done, that I was unable to figure out:

  1. I wanted footnotes but was unable to edit them in.
  2. My first video of Elizabeth Cotten sits with just a black screen. I really wanted to make sure that I covered her, so I am hoping the black screen isn’t a deterrent.
  3. I also wish it had more capability to move things around, but I am ultimately happy with my project.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that many of the women I covered have been granted awards for their art, especially with Grammys. I also noticed that many have made it into a hall of fame, but most happened much later in their careers. This is not surprising since women are often passed over and go unrecognized for their work when it is happening. Add extra layers of oppression like race or sexual identity, and that becomes even more complicated.

You can access my essay here.

And my Spotify playlist here.

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Timeglider: I’m not sure it is for us.

This week I was tasked with investigating the timeline service Timeglider. The purpose of the review is to narrow down the options for our class collaborative project on Phil Ochs. While I think that Timeglider is a perfectly acceptable program, I am not convinced it is for us.

This program is a data-driven timeline app that has been owned and operated by one man in Boise, Idaho. It has been around in one form or another since 2002, so longevity doesn’t seem to be a problem with this site. The products created by the app are available to viewers by URL, so accessibility is not an issue. They have pretty standards privacy policies and agree to protect your info, only sharing with vendors they partner with.

I know, so far it sounds pretty good, right?

Here are the reasons I am not sold on the site:

  1. There is a fee to use the service. The parameters that would best for our group would cost $5 a month or $50 a year. There is a free student account, but it is too limited for our assignment.
  2. While I was not able to see very many examples of the site at work, due to the layout of their site, it seems to be lacking in tools and features. Since we are hoping to get this work usable for the Woody Guthrie Center, I think this site is not up to par in the area of design.

We have some talented folks in our group and because of that, I feel like this service isn’t advanced enough for our vision and ultimate goal.

Future Podcast Stars?

For our audio assignment, Olivia and I worked together to discuss Phil Ochs and his legacy. We knew his commitment to social justice was something we wanted to touch on, as well as his niece Robyn Ochs. His unfortunate death by suicide was something that we wanted to mention, but also not sensationalize. That is why we decided to give listeners resources. Oliva and I work within social justice organizations and it is in our nature to provide folks with help when we can.

The process was fun and challenging. I feel like I would do this again, maybe even start my own podcast. I could talk about fat-shion, queer issues, history, and cats. Any takers?

But truly, I am grateful for this assignment. It pushed me out of my comfort zone and empowered me to get comfortable with myself. It is totally normal to feel cringy when one hears their own voice but after a bit of listening, I appreciate my voice more. I appreciate the power of it.

Here are a few pointers/things I would do differently next time:

  1. Check for background noise after the first recording, away from the original location so you can truly tell if the background is noisy. We checked it, but did so in the same area so it didn’t sound off until it was too late.
  2. When editing, smaller clips are better. You have a bit more control of the edits and rearrangements.
  3. Find background music early, and make your clips longer than you think. It is better to have too much and have to edit, then having to start from scratch.

Without further ado, here is our audio project: