Category Archives: Week Two

New Media Research

As a beginning new media practitioner, there are some skills I have already and some I will need to work on. Currently, I am most skillful in envisioning and design. I believe that I can create a fantastic design and model of something in my head, whether it’s the angles used in a film or the design of a piece of technology I’d like to see built. I’m huge on aesthetics and visuals, especially cinematography. Academically, I have skills in mathematics and natural sciences (physics), specifically quantum physics, which I find extremely interesting.

However, I also have a lot to work on to be a true new media practitioner. I want to be able to take the designs and visuals in my head and turn them into physical models. In order to do that I know I have to have a good understanding in computer programming as well as hardware engineering. I feel that I need to expand my knowledge scientifically, or else I’ll really just be someone with a lot of thoughts in their head and nothing to truly show for it.

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Interdisciplinary Research

From what I understood from the article, Leggett is saying that not only do artists and scientists need each other more than ever in innovative projects, but that the lines between what it means to be an artist compared to a scientist are being blurred. There are some pros to be had with this type of collaboration. For one, artists can provide scientists with a different type of learning approach. I find that a lot of artists are “tinkerers” and tend to learn as they go, whereas a lot of scientists are problem solvers and like to have a set, organized plan. With these two mindsets working together, there can be both a set, organized plan as well as malleability to change the way the plan is.

There are, however, cons to this approach as well. Some projects I believe need to be purely scientifically driven. With emerging technologies especially, I believe it’s more important for scientists to focus rather than artists. Scientists have the skill set to innovate new technologies and help bring them to the consumer market, where a lot of artists then take it and turn it into a medium. If both scientists and artists are working together on an emerging technology the process of delivering that technology to consumers could be slowed down and tampered with. In short, I believe scientists must first focus on bringing a technology to the market, where artists can then turn it into a medium with mass appeal. From that point it makes the most sense for the two types of professions to work together to further that technology.

Tinkering

After watching the video and reading the article, I’ve come to define tinkering as a curious type of thought process that’s based on imagination and exploring. In a way, we tinker with every situation we come face to face with. When deciding something, we review possible outcomes (or at least we should) and tinker with the notion of what the decision could be. Artists tinker with their imagination and project at hand; filmmakers try different camera angles, writers try different perspectives and vocabulary, painters try different colours. Tinkering is all about imperfection and creating something beautiful out of it.

I’m not one to like to tinker very much. I usually go into a project with a specific idea and outcome in mind. Of course, to reach that point I had to tinker in my head. That’s where the majority of it goes on, I love to analyze and tinker mentally but when it comes to the physical world I like to have a clear plan and follow it. When I film, I think of all the camera angles mentally and execute them physically, but I rarely try out different ones in the moment (because I should have already gone over them in my head and why they wouldn’t work). However, I believe tinkering is important in projects and can lead to a better outcome sometimes. Occasionally, an artist can get caught up in their own mind and realize their work really isn’t that great, something tinkering could shine light on.

Oral Skills

I believe my existing oral skills are very good. I’ve had a ton of practice in high school with talking in front of a large audience and having to keep their attention. I’ve been apart of theatre, auditioned for roles in television, done public speeches (for class and for school council running) and given a lot of class presentations. All of these things require the use of a strong voice, good eye contact, and an interesting level of pitch and tone to suit the type of presentation being given.

I would like to work on parts that go together with an oral presentation. Most of my experience being vocal in front of an audience has really just been about what I and other people I’m with can deliver from our minds and expressions. Naturally, the use of Powerpoint/Keynote during a presentation is somewhat foreign to me so I’d like to work on utilizing that to help enhance presentations to the class.