CSUSM TA FALL 2015 [BLOG 7]

This will be the final blog entry for my Teaching Assistant internship at CSUSM. I also have to say that this is my final time in being a teaching assistant at CSUSM since I would like to try something new for my final semester. These last two weeks have been quite busy for the students and myself since Finals and projects were coming at an end. I personally have been in a very stressful state and I really do feel that I need a break that is longer than just Thanksgiving break.

Lab Only Days 12/2
I only went to the lab hours on the 12th of December since the 25th of November was just a day from Thanksgiving and I thought that there wouldn’t be any students coming in. A class buddy of mine (not in VSAR 303) even told me that there was nobody in during the lab hours, so I guess I saved up on gas. Other than that, I had some students come into the lab hours since it was a week before their final projects. The final project is all about incorporating text into their film, and it seems like most questions that were given to me were not about text. Instead, most questions were about audio levels and exporting settings. Since this project is more experimental, it gives students lots of freedom in what they want to do

11/23 Interview Project Screening 2
On this day, Pr. Allard proceeded in screening the rest of the interview projects that were not shown on the first day. Pr. Allard had the rest of the class work on their Final Project that involved Text and Image after screening. Some students left early in order to actually start the project, while some stayed in to gather ideas. While walking around the class during lab time, I talked to students to check out their ideas. Many students had different ideas and some of them were even thinking about using their phones to film. For the students who had no ideas, I showed them examples of Text & Image projects from past students who took VSAR 303. I even showed them my project that I id as well:

11/30 Hands-On Quiz 2
Pr. Allard assigned another Hands-On Quiz for students on this day. Much like the last day of doing the first Hands-On Quiz 1, Pr. Allard and I would instruct individual students to do certain tasks on Adobe Premiere. Unlike the first quiz which was basic interface handling, this quiz was more about doing editing. Before taking the quiz, students were instructed to import 4 clips, create a sequence, and have in and out points on the clips. When taking the quiz students would be instructed to put their clips in the timeline, fix audio levels, adding effects, and create L and J cuts. Most students did rather well, but some students had trouble in creating L and J cuts since they either didn’t know how to do it or didn’t know what it meant. Many students demonstrated many different ways to do the L and J cuts and also fixing colors in the video.

Project: Animatic
Th animatic that I’m working on for my After Effects class is really coming through. At the moment I’ve been drawing the characters and set pieces and implementing them to the video. I find it to be VERY time consuming, but it’s totally worth it for how it looks as of now. I have my character look much more animated by stretching, scaling, and tweaking keypoints in After Effects. As of now, I’m hoping to finish this before Wednesday even though I’m working on an extreme time crunch!

Here’s some progress shots of my animatic:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ip2lyoi6kmp9cx9/fang_week14_hw_updated_animatic_v1.mp4?dl=0

 

CSUSM TA FALL 2015 [BLOG 6]

These past weeks of 11 and 12 have been one of the most busiest weeks yet. That is because finals start on the 14th of December. However with most arts and tech courses, I’ve found that many professors want final projects to be done a week before finals week. With that in mind, there’s a crazy time crunch with students and their work. So far the weeks have been busy for me personally, but from what I know is that many students are quite stressed as well.

Lab Hours: 11/11 & 11/18
It was the 11th in which students mostly came to lab hours since they were finishing their interview projects. Many of them just had quick questions and wanted suggestions, critiques, or a nice little chat. As I checked out their work in progress edits, I was quite impressed how quickly they all learned using the camera and audio equipment. All the shots shown to me were shot really well with great lighting and composition. Some shots were questionable, but overall all were done very well. The editing that was shown to me was great as well. Many students had great b-roll footage edited in making the interview look more interesting. Very few students had audio issues since they mostly sounded nice and clear. Students who had audio peaking were able to fix it easily by adding keyframes to drop the audio in Premiere.

The 18th was actually a rather empty lab day since by that time people were already done presenting their projects. Only one student came in for help with lessons and that was about it. I did my regular thing of finishing up homework from other classes.

11/9 Hands-on Quiz 1
During this day of class, Allard and I were giving students their first Hands-on Quiz. For this quiz, the instructor (Allard and I) would give an individual student some instructions to follow. The quiz went through the VERY BASICS of editing using Adobe Premiere. First steps were to instruct the student to open up Premiere, create a project folder, and save it in a directory in a USB storage device. The next steps was to create a sequence, import files, and create “in” and “out” points. The last steps involved creating layers and inserting the clip into the timeline. The quiz was in fact, very easy considering how every student knew how to do almost every step. The only steps that some students have problems were creating a sequence and adding layers. It seemed that every student passed the quiz since it was very easy.

Aside from the Hands-on Quiz, Allard and I  went over the students’ interview projects. The project was not due this day, but he wanted to see that the students already had their shots done and were in the editing (post production) phase. Allard and I visited each group to check out their progress shots to give out pointers and critiques. Much like I said before, I was impressed by the students’ work.

11/16 Interview Project Screening
The students’ Interview Project was due this day so that they can present it to Allard. Since it was screening day, there was no work to do but to watch all the projects done by the groups. After screening a project, Allard would go in detail about the quality of the projects by praising and critiquing each work. I actually did not watch the students’ works (which I think I should have) since I was rather busy working on projects and homework from another class. However from what I heard from Allard was that he was very impressed by every groups’ projects.

Other projects
At the moment, I have a rather big project I’m working on. This project is for my After Effects class in which I’m creating an simple animated trailer for a comic series that I’ve created. The planned outcome for this project is to make it like a motion comic involving minimal character animation while still looking like my comics. I’ve already created a simple animatic for the trailer which has simple sketches.

My expected outcome is to make the animatic look like my comic series: Dat Punk Timbo. Here’s an example of one of my comics involving the character, Timbo, who is the yellow guy.
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While this isn’t part of my animated trailer, here are some other animations I’ve done using After Effects:

CSUSM TA FALL 2015 [BLOG 5]

The 9th and 10th week of school has been a very interesting one. On October 2th, Allard and I went over audio equipment, however November 2nd a fellow classmate and friend, Chris Allen, took my position as the teaching assistant. On Nov 2, Tony went over lighting equipment and I wasn’t present during that day since I was still in LA. That is because because on October 30th to November 1st, I was exhibiting my art in an artist alley for Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo 2015.

Lab Hours: 10/28 & 11/4
Before I get into talking about the interesting things, I’ll talk about my lab hours. Unfortunately, there weren’t as many people who came in for these two LAB-ONLY days. I was mostly left alone working on homework from other classes. The homework wasn’t anything interesting either since they were papers I had to write. One paper was about a documentary as the other was about power and culture.

10/26 Audio Equipment
With this lecture, I did the same as I did for other equipment lectures. I operated one camera while Allard would operate another. I operated a camera that had its viewfinder be projected onto a TV. I had to record Allard point out small fine details on the camera equipment in which I zoomed in to get a good view of the camera. Allard checked out 2 camera sets, audio equipment, and some lighting gear as well. The camera sets were the same as the past sets that Allard has been checking out which consist of: a VIXIA, Manfrotto Tripod, headphones, and HDMI cables to project the camera screen on a TV. The audio equipment included beachteks, lavalier, shotgun mics, and shotgun mic mounts. The lighting gear came in a box that had 3 stands for 3 lights. Allard did not really go through lighting because that day was saved for the next class that I did not attend. This day was an audio day so the lecture was mostly about how to set up the audio gear. The camera was placed on top of the beachtek while being plugged into the camera’s mic. A shotgun mic was placed on top of the camera as it was plugged into the beachtek’s left audio input. The lavalier was plugged into the beachtek’s right input and it was clipped onto the camera’s hand strap. Overall the look of the camera with all the audio gear was a mess since there were so many plugs and Allard talked about that. He said to arrange the wires so that nothing was in the way of the camera’s viewfinder. Setting up the audio equipment isn’t very complicated when you get past the plugs, but I cound that Allard ran into a common mistake with the lavalier which made for an awkward moment. The lavalier kit comes with two units which consist of a receiver and transmitter unit. Allard made the mistake of using the transmitter unit as a receiver since he plugged it into the camera so he couldn’t hear anything coming from the lavalier. The receiver is supposed to be plugged into the beachtek while the transmitter had the mic attachment. Despite it being an awkward moment or Allard, it was a good example to show the students the importance of knowing how to plug in the audio equipment. Aside from plugging in the audio gear, Allard went over adjusting the mic’s recording level using the beachtek. In order to do this, you would adjust the left and right knobs and find out what recording level was best so that it would not peak. Another thing that Allard went over was about the different options to record with audio if there one of the equipment stopped working. Allard recommended charging equipment overnight and keeping spare batteries for the beachtek, lavaliers, and battery powered shotgun mics. If the beachtek was to go out of power, one would be left with using a lavalier or battery powered shogun mic for audio. Rather than having to plug in the mics into the beachtek, you would have to plug in the mics into the camera’s mic input. The audio equipment was a long one, but I think it went over all the important details for audio equipment.

Activities outside of class: Comikaze Expo 2015
Once again, I went to exhibit my artwork at a convention and this time it was at Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo 2015 which was held in the LA Convention center. It went on from October 30th to November 1st.
20151030_110337This comic convention is the biggest one I’ve exhibited in so far and I have to say it has been my greatest exhibiting experience so far. The crowd over here were so much varied in their interests and much of my artwork appealed to them. I think its because my style in my artwork is very influenced by western media which consists of lots of American cartoons and comics. I was able to make great sales and even meet a few artists from San Diego that I will be seeing again in future conventions. Comikaze was is definitely a convention that I will return to again for next year.

You can read more about my Comikaze Experience over at my artist blog.

CSUSM TA FALL 2015 [BLOG 4]

It was onward to the 7th and 8th week of school and my workload has increased greatly. October is ending and assignments are rushed for midterms and class projects are getting finished. Week 7 was all about working on lessons while on week 8 Allard had students screen their first project.

Week 7 10/12 and LAB HOURS 10/14,10/21
Week 7 which was on 10/12 was a day to work on lessons or their project. Allard and I helped any students who needed any help. The lab hours were also quite busy too. Not much students come in during my lab hours, but at least 3 or more people came in to get assistance. The common questions that I got from students were about video framerate and export settings on their videos. One of the requirements in Allard’s first project was to shoot in 30fps (frames per second), however some students did not know how to change the framerate on their cameras. They did not shoot in 30fps either because they couldn’t tell or because they didn’t know how to change the settings. Some people can’t tell the difference between 30fps and 60fps and it seems that I found out that not everyone can tell the difference. 30fps looks smooth already, however 60fps is way smoother in terms of movement. I tend to play lots of video games on computers and many times computers run games differently. A game running at a high framerate (usually 60) means that the computer is running the game well. While low framerate means that the computer isn’t optimized for high graphical detail. Some times a game runs at 60fps, but when lots of particle effects (like explosions) occur, the framerate of the game might drop and things don’t look as smooth as 60fps. I’ve encountered this quite a lot so I’ve been able to tell the difference between 30fps and 60fps. For the students who couldn’t tell the difference, I simply showed them a comparison video which helped them quite a lot. For the students who shot in 60fps, there was a way to reduce the framerate in their export settings which was the next thing that I helped students with. The fact that Premiere has so many export settings scares many beginners and some people may export a small video that has a huge file size. The best export setting was to put their videos as h.246 since it compresses the video to small file size while still retaining good quality. In order to fix the 60fps issue, I let students know that it can be changed to 30fps in the “Basic Video Settings” in the Export Settings. By unchecking the box next to framerate, you can choose different framerates as low as 10fps for the video.

Aside from just assistance with the program, I gave small critiques and suggestion for students’ first project. Their first project was all about filming a simple task and making sure the actions flowed in the project. I was quite impressed by the very nice shots that students had in their projects. It seemed like many of them knew how to frame a shot and also work with good lighting. I assisted in some students’ work that had strange flow to them. In order to fix the oddities, I suggested taking out an extra shot in favor of keeping things short and sweet. I also suggested arranging clips differently as well. I critiqued on some of the camera work done since some students had some awkward shots. The shots were either a bit too wobbly or were out of focus.

Week 8 10/19
This day was the day that students were to finish their first project since Allard was screening them. As first projects, I’d say that many students did very well. A lot of people filmed a friend or family member doing a simple task like cooking and waking up in the morning. It was entertaining to see everyone’s different approach to doing similar tasks since many were filled with humor. Not everyone’s project was screened that day, but I have to say that everyone did an overall good job with their first projects.

CSUSM TA FALL 2015 [BLOG 3]

The 5th and the 6th week of school has passed and things have been picking up quite a lot. It’s October and that month is always a very busy month for school since many courses assign projects during this month. Professor Allard has assigned his students to work on their first project. This project was all about filming someone doing a specific task using only hard cuts and no special effects.

Lab Hours: 9/30 & 10/7
Allard has been assigning students to doing Adobe Premiere lessons. These lessons are found in the book “Adobe Premiere Pro CC Classroom in a Book” which was a required text for students to purchase. These lessons done from the book give students a better understanding of how to use Adobe Premiere by following instructions to do simple edits. The required text is actually the 2014 version while the version being used in class is 2015, so there are minor changes in how students would do the lessons. Due to version differences, some instructions in the lessons were skipped or done differently. After finishing these lessons, students were to upload their copies of the lessons into the school’s “screening station” servers so that they can be graded by me. I pretty much grade every students’ lessons by using an Excel sheet and I write down whether they completed them or missed some instructions. I grade the students’ work by following a grading guide created by Allard that goes through every lesson that needs to be done. Aside from grading, I have to find which parts of the lessons in which students missed the most. That way Allard and I could go over those parts with the class so they can understand it.

So far most Students are doing very well with the lessons, but there have been some students who have been coming into the lab hours to get help from me. It’s nice to see that the lab hours have been getting much more busier now. As usual, I’m still using these lab hours to finish up homework and sometimes get other work done.

9/28
This day, Allard asked me to pick up 5 sets of equipment for the class from Arts Checkout. Each set of equipment included a VIXIA camera, Manfrotto Tripod, and headphones. One set was used for an in class demonstration of how to use the camera, while the others were given to 4 different groups of students. Allard’s demonstration of using the VIXIA was short since it was just a quick review of how to use the camera. After the short review, 4 groups of four people were chosen to go out and practice doing different types of shots. The students were assigned to do a wide, medium, close up, tilt, pan, and tracking shot with the cameras. I went outside with the students to check up how they were shooting with the cameras.

The groups seemed to have selected their roles since there was always an actor/actress, cinemetographer, support, and equipment manager. I say that they selected their roles because nobody seemed to take turns, but this was not a bad thing at all. The actor/actress was usually the lively person who seemed fun for the camera. The cinemtographer was the person always behind the camera and operating it and they were like the directors. The person doing support was helping with sound and helped out the actor. As the equipment manager was the one who seemed to know the most about using the equipment. Everyone seemed to do rather well with their teamwork. After shooting, the groups returned to class and they uploaded their shots into the screening station server.

10/5
The equipment that Allard checked out were only 2 VIXIA cameras and an HDMI cord. Students did not really use equipment this day since Allard was screening the footage that all the groups did on the previous week. The cameras that were checked out were connected to a TV to show the students’ footage. Every student had their own different “story” to tell with their different types of shots. That was because Allard told the students to try and create a simple movie without using Premiere to edit it. However it seemed like every student thought that they were going to edit the footage so many of the shots included people saying “action” and “cut”. This was mostly dismissed by Allard since he mostly wanted to see how well everyone did with their shots. After screening the groups’ footage, Allard instructed students to start editing their first assigned project. Students were told to import their footage to premiere and start working on their edits.

CSUSM TA Fall 2015 [Blog 2]

So far the 3rd and 4th week of school has passed by and work has been picking up its pace. I now know my lab hours since I discussed my schedule with both Professor Allard (Tony) and Professor Berman. Right now, my lab hours on Mondays are 9:30AM-12:30PM as for Wednesdays its 10:00AM-1:00PM.

Lab Only Days: 9/16 and 9/23
Much like last spring semester, I used my lab hours to finish homework or relax when I got the chance to. Every time I come into Arts 340, I still have to tidy up the place so its presentable and ready to be a teaching environment. All I have to do is to organize the chairs, straighten up the computers, and clear the tables of any mess. Aside from that, I also make sure keyboards, mice, and headphones are still working or else I have to fill out a “faulty equiptment” form.  So far I’ve had about 3 students come into my lab hours for help. They mostly asked me to clarify lesson instructions they had to do for Allards class.

Demo Day
9/14
This day was quite a busy day in Tony’s Intro to Video class because he had me help him with his demo with the equipment. The first half of the class I did not do much since Tony was assigning workstations and did a lecture/discussion. Alber Rascon, Head Technition, also came into the class to give an introduction to checking out arts equipment. It was the 2nd half of the class in which I did more assisting since Tony was doing a demo with certain filming equipment. The equipment that he checked out for the demo was a Vixia HD camera, Manfrotto Tripod, a pair of headphones, and HDMI cables to connect to a TV. Tony bascially introduced the basics of using the Vixia cameras by showing the class its functions and settings. Aside from that, he talked about he importance of setting up a tripod along with recording with headphones. After talking about the camera’s functions, Tony then proceeded to do a lecture on different types of shots: wide, close-up, pan, tilt, etc. This was when I actually did some more of the “fun” work in which I demonstrated each shot and got to fiddle with the camera. I tried to be a bit entertaining with the demos by doing silly shots of Tony just so the class wouldn’t be snoozing.

Absence
9/21
I was absent on this certain day since I was actually out of town that day due to a pre-planned trip I made. However it was all good since that day Tony stated that he did not really need me. Tony just discussed storyboards, went over assigned readings, and did a demo about logging into the school’s server to upload their assignments.

OTHER ARTISTIC ACTIVITY
Although most classes I’ve been taking at CSUSM are more about video work and graphic design, I actually really want to pursue a career in doing cartoons and illustration. Some of people may already know that I really like to draw since I’m constantly doodling in class in my notes and sketchbook. Aside from just doodles, I actaully do lots of digital artwork in which the subjects are usually stylized cartoon characters, pinups, and comics. I’m always looking for new inspirations and some of the places I go to look for that are at comic and anime convetions. At the conventions, I always go to the artist alleys in which I meet aspiring artists who set up a table to display their artwork. While seeing awesome artwork is fun, I find that meeting the artists themselves is better because they all have stories to tell about their art and themselves. Over the past years I’ve always wanted to exhibit my artwork in an artist alley, and I’m finally doing that right now.

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A friend and I have booked tables to exhibit our artwork at a convention called Touhoucon. It took place in the Anaheim Hilton Hotel and was an event about spreading the word about collection of Japanese video games known as Touhou. It took place during the dates September 18th to the 20th. I didn’t just exhibit artwork, but I was also selling my pieces to people who took interest in my art. I was selling prints, t-shirts, and commissioned art. The convention wasn’t the biggest, but there were sizable crowds in this convention. I was able to meet lots of new people along with artists and I had such a great time. By the time it was all over on the 20th I could have came back home from Anaheim and attend class on the 21st, but I was too exhausted from all the fun I had exhibiting my artwork. I instead spent the night at my friend’s house and returned on the 21st and relaxed. However relaxation didn’t last long because I had lots of work to make up afterwards…

You can read more about my experience exhibiting my artwork at Touhoucon on my artist blog.
I’ll be exhibiting my artwork once again at Comikaze which will be on October 30th to November 1st.

So far I am still enjoying the task of being a teaching assistant. I hope that I will learn some new things for the next following weeks.

CSUSM TA Fall 2015 [Blog 1]

Once again, I find myself being a Teaching Assistant! However this time I will actually be needed for a specific class rather than contacting professors if they required assistant.

The class that I’m currently assisting is Introduction to Video. This course is being taught by Professor Allard (or Tony) and it’s an introductory course to video production. It’s a class that’s only on Mondays from 1PM to 5PM. Most enrolled students are new to using cameras, equipment, and using Adobe Premiere while some of them have experience. Some of the students are some class buddies I had in previous classes so I was able to able know their knowledge on video production.

WEEK 1: 8/31
There was not much going on the first week mainly because it was just the first day. Tony and I just introduced ourselves, the course, and activities the class was going to do. Simply put that the first day was mainly a short syllabus review.

Week 2: 9/7
This day was Labor Day so that meant that there was no class during that day since Tony’s intro to video class are only set on Mondays. However I did not yet know my lab hours so I had to talk to Johnathan Berman to help me out.

MEETING 9/8
There was an intern meeting this day and I was able to meet up with other fellow interns. Out of the many interns, 4 of them were buddies that I’ve taken classes with as well. It was rather interesting knowing that many students were interning outside of CSUSM. One of the students was a photographer for sports as another student designed clothing or purses (not sure, memory fuzzy). I didn’t stay long because the meeting was held the same time as my Spanish class, but none the less, it was great to meet other interns.

Overall I’ve been feeling extremely busy with my current schedule and hopefully being a teaching assistant will be another fun learning experience.

[BLOG 8] WEEK 15

This is the last blog entry about my teaching assistant experience. Week 15 I actually did much more assisting than the previous weeks and I helped design the Student Media Festival program. I’d say I was the most busiest during this week.

Additional Assistant
I took interest in being a teaching assistant again for next fall semester, so I went and asked Professor Allard if his Intro to Video class needed an assistant. Allard was very interested in having me assist in his class for next semester since he’s well aware of my skills with video editing and equipment. He asked me to come into his class on May 4th to be an additional assistant and help quiz students. The intro students were taking a quiz to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in using Adobe Premiere. The quiz involved the instructor grading the student on how well they do certain tasks in Premiere. The tasks that they did was adding footage to the timeline and, editing footage, adding transitions, adjusting volume, and adding titles. Allard gave Victor and I papers to quiz students, and many students did very well. They all seem to know the program rather well despite most of them being new to Premeire. The part that many students did not really know was how to create a “J” and “L” cut. I wasn’t sure if it was clearly explained in class or if the students didn’t really understand how it worked. When they were stumped, I simply drew a simple picture to show how it looked. Some students were still confused afterwards, so I had to show them a picture from google just to help them some more.

After Effects
I was called in by Natalie Goldman once again to assist her class. This time they were using After Effects, however I do not know much about it. I forgot to go over the program before hand, but I was simply too busy working on other assignments. I did not let that hinder me since I decided to use this day to learn the program with students and listen to Goldman’s lectures. The interface and buttons look very different from Premiere, however there are many functions that are similar to it. The class was working on an assignment in which they animate a ball bouncing using keyframes. Despite knowing little about After Effects, I was still able to help troubled students since I’ve use a lot of keyframes in Premiere. Simply add a keyframe to the object, drag the timeline forward, place the object in a different area, and then add another keyframe. Following that, you will have a simple animation in which an object moves. Many students caught onto animating using keyframes rather quick, so there were lots of interesting animations created. One student made the ball bounce off the “walls” of the border of the video as another made some words bounce and squish.

Designing a Program
I was asked by Kristine to help design the 10th Student Media Festival program since it was held on the 8th. I’d say this was one of the few times I did some graphic designing and it was quite an experience. I used to think that designing simple things like this would be easy, but it wasn’t. I had to make sure the document for the program was measured and scaled well enough so people can read it. Arranging the sections and images was also tough since I had to compensate for page size. Creating the format was tough enough, but the next hard thing was making sure grammar and spelling was correct. I copied text from documents given to me and simply pasted it onto the program, but without the help from Kristine, the program would have been a mess. She and I were able to find many typos and we had to shorten video descriptions that students gave to me. The program was eventually finished a day before the festival, however I found that I left out things when it was the time of the festival. It turns out I forgot to add two films in the selection ballot strip for the Audience Award.

[BLOG 7] Weeks 13 & 14

This semester is nearing its end, so finals and projects have been getting crammed into my schedule. During these weeks, I set myself to finish up my advanced video project and start on my animations. I used most of these lab hours to finalize my video while also working on other assignments. I also assisted in teaching Natalie Goldman’s class again on the 13th.

April 13
Professor Goldman asked me to come into her class to assist in teaching students again. Today, the students were using Adobe Audition to create a narrative using only audio. I don’t use Audition as much, but I was still able to teach students some tricks in manipulating their audio pieces. It also has been a while since I last used the program, so this day I was able to refresh my memory of using it. Once I got my hands on the program, I got myself to remember the simple features it had. Before assisting students, I asked them what ideas and concepts they had for their narrative. It was very interesting in what many students had in mind to do. Many wanted to create a sense of place that was took place in various environments like an office, forest, park, city, jailcell, or a battlefield. The students either used preset sounds that were in the school’s loopology storage, sounds they recorded with field recorders, or downloaded sound files from Youtube. A lot of the students found that many of the loopology audio files sounded rather “generic”, so Professor Goldman and I recommended that students alter the audio using effects. The most common audio effect many people used was an echo effect, but there’s no problem in that since an echo can change many things. One of the students made a jailcell environment, but I suggested she added a slight echo to make the jailcell seem rather empty and lonely. Another student also used an echo to make his environment sound as if it was a boat ride under a tunnel. Another suggestion I had for students was to play around with the effects like reverb, equalizer, and modulation. These effects have preset settings that one can edit to alter audio to make it sound either robotic, like a radio, or distorted. After showing some students the effects, they were able to alter the audio to the point where it sounded nothing like the original. One student made the sound of a dripping water sound like a gunshots or explosions while another had made a stream of water sound like air. Overall the class seem to have had a lot of fun editing sounds.

Projects

The first project I’ll be talking about is my film for my Advanced Video class. I used these weeks to finish filming the final scenes that include the climax and ending. It was rather unfortunate that one of my actors couldn’t be part of my film because he was recently employed. I was happy for him to finally find a job after being unemployed for almost a year, but I had to find someone else to fill his position. His part of the film was going to be very minor, and I did not yet film the parts that featured his character. He was supposed to be a mysterious and sketchy person walking by, but that role was taken by my sister. I also have to say that I was not very ready for this change since the news of my friend being employed was given to me on the day that he was supposed to be featured in the film. My sister wasn’t very prepared either since I just told her she was going to be in the film as I picked her up from Palomar. Although I casted her to be a mysterious person, she wasn’t dressed to be one. I provided a black hat, sunglasses, and face bandana, but my sister had a bright colorful shirt on. Luckily Victor was around so I asked him to let my sister wear his black sweater. The sweater looked very baggy and big on my sister, so the clothing worked for a mysterious character. The next week, I shot the final scenes and then proceeded to finish editing the film. At the moment, I am near to the point of finishing the film. I just need to add more scenes and add in some special effects that I will be adding.

The next project to talk about is my animation project. I just barely started doing animation on week 14 since I used majority of week 13 working on my film. For the animation, I’m using Adobe Flash Pro since it has features and tools that are useful for animation. The animations that I will be doing will run at 24 frames a second so I can achieve a smooth look to the movements. I first started off with a simple ball animation which has the ball bouncing up and down. The animation of the ball bouncing up and down seemed a bit boring to me, so I decided to make the ball bounce off the corners of the work area in Flash. Animating the ball was not really hard, but making the ball have weight was a challenge. My first test animation made the ball bounce too slow since I added too many frames, so I deleted some frames to make it bounce faster. However there was the issue of making the ball bounce too fast, so I had to add more frames to slow it down some more. I created the animation I wanted, but UNFORTUNATELY I did a beginner’s mistake of not saving the file when the program randomly crashed on me. I didn’t save mainly because I got so absorbed in my project that I forgot to do it. I was very frustrated so I decided to work on another animation on the next day. This time I animated a character doing the iconic “Hadouken” from Street Fighter series. This was a much more advanced animation than the bouncing ball, but I used some reference to help me animate it. This preview here isn’t final, but here is a work in progress animated gif of my work.

hadouken2
I have to say that I am very satisfied of how it looks. Animation is very tedious and it requires lots of patience, but I’m finding it to be very fun and rewarding to see the final outcome. I will be adding more frames to this animation and I will be cleaning it up so that it’s not as sketchy.

Gallery

[BLOG 5 & 6] Weeks 9, through 12

I’m combining two blogs into one because I have been completely forgetting to do them due to the many things that are occurring at the moment. I was supposed to do Blog 5 on March 30 but my honest truth is that I was so ready for spring break that I forgot about it. I have to say that there wasn’t really much going on for being a teaching assistant during weeks 9, 10, and 12, but I have to say my spring break had some interesting experiences.

Weeks and Lab Hours
I was not given any days to assist in classes nor did students come into the lab for help during weeks 9, 10, and 12. I spent my time in lab hours doing homework as usual and asked if anyone needed help if they came into the lab room. While I haven’t really been assisting students, I have been talking with fellow teaching assistant, Victor Sandoval, about his projects.

Currently Victor has been working on a documentary about an organization that helps out the elderly. He’s been coming into the lab to do editing and I’d say that I learned some things from him as we conversed. While I have good knowledge of how to make videos, I don’t know much about documentaries. I’ve only made on documenatary and Professor Berman went over documentaries breifly. Victor tells me that he has over 40 minutes of different interviews with people. I know that documentaries only use small portions of the interviews, but I did not know how tedious it is to find the right portions to use. Victor told me he watches the interviews from start to finish looking for the parts that would fit into his documentary. While watching the interviews, he has a pen and paper ready to write down the times from the footage that he feels are important. He says you can miss good responses if you just skip to parts of the interview. Aside from Victor teaching me some things about filming documentaries, he asked me for some suggestions and I gladly helped out. I mostly pointed out things to cut and skip out to keep good pacing.

Spring Break
Break was nothing more than just a big break from school. I literally shut my mind off of any thoughts of school since I was stressed out from a homework load. I did not do anything teaching related, but I found this break to be very fun. First off, I planned a hangout with a group of friends because one of them was going to join the Navy and I wanted to have one more hang out before he leaves. Rather than just inviting my usual friends, I invited other friends to come along since I also wanted to build better relationships with them. My friends and I didn’t really go places, but we had a little party at my house in which we bonded together. While school and work may take over most of a student’s life, I think one should still stay social with their close peers. Aside from hanging out with friends, I also planned a trip to Downtown San Diego in Little Italy with my siblings. I wanted to go there simply because I really like the atmosphere of Downtown San Diego and there’s Blick Art Materials.

Current Projects
Right now, I now have two video projects. I’m still working on my advanced video project about the janitor and the “DO NOT ENTER” sign. That project is getting a little more than halfway to being finished. I still have to film more scenes for the climax of the film along with the ending. However I am also still working on storyboards of how I will shoot these last scenes. I plan to have the filming finished some time by next week since it is due by the end of the month. Although I am still shooting, I have also been editing the footage into the final product. So far I think I have over 200 files of footage since I have lots of shots. The film goes at a rather quick pace so most shots don’t really last over 5 seconds long.

My next video project is for my Process of Art class, however it will be animated. This video will be a collection of experimental animations done using 2D animation. This means that I will be animating frame by frame instead of using keyframes. I know that 2D animation takes a long time and is tedious, but I think I need to push myself to do it. I’ve been very interested in doing this kind of animation because I’ve always loved watching cartoons. My main inspiration for this project is Disney, John K, and Preston Blair. I’ve been studying the ways of animation by watching videos and checking out blogs to see how I can animate my own characters. The many animations that I’d like to do are going to be simple due to time constraints. I will be doing animations of a character walking, running, jumping, making faces, or even dance. I want to focus on characters mainly because I think animating a character brings them to life.