Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Monday, June 18, 2012

Who, Why, What, How? Implement. Translate.

1. I am a single white male, early thirties, two children. I have a full time job of 12 years, a part time job in the field I'm studying, and a dog. I am a senior New Media student, taking full time hours whenever possible.

2. I am here to get my degree and learn more about design. I want to be a graphic designer, but also a well rounded new media professional, because I believe new media is key to future communications and social interaction, just as the printing press was in the past.

3. If I were to change anything in the school, it would be the overall intent of the major program. When a musician goes to school for music, regardless of the instrument, he learns about everything there is to know about music. I have been a little disappointed with the fundamental/basic skills and knowledge I have not learned. What good is a designer who wasn't taught fine art skills at a college level? I've received little to no color theory, even less on shape and line, and no training with traditional media.

4. When I imagine what this school could be in New Media, I imagine an intensive program that teaches a student from the ground up, and has the ability to reach all students regardless of age, demographic, or walk of life. I imagine a New Media program that is the equivalent of SCAD for fine arts and design. If I had the money, I could get my degree online from SCAD in drawing from start to finish, for instance, and be taught every aspect of that discipline. With the resources I see at IUPUI, I imagine a school that can do the same.

5. I'm not an expert at academic administration. But if I were to implement these changes, I would offer more fine arts training at the freshman level and save some of the theoretical classes for sophomore level. I think some of the skills require of us in digital art would be easier to attain with a better trained hand. Junior level courses would be more digital, and focused, while still giving fundamental knowledge of other unfocused areas in new media. Senior level courses would bring students together to implement skills in a group dynamic.

It is important to understand that most people focus on one aspect. Though, I believe it is important to still have a fundamental knowledge of what other people do in new media.

Finally, I would make all the classes, from start to finish, accessible to all. I started with online classes, and was given the impression that I could finish online. This is not the case. I have no problem attending a campus class, but when all the rest of my 300-400 level courses are only on campus and during the day, it makes it hard for a working parent to finish. This is why I've spent the past 5 years getting to senior status. Accessibility is an important factor for working students.

6. I translate these ideas every day. In my job, again of 12 years, I've been everything from the bottom of the barrel to a to performer and producer of a major financial institution. I could never be as successful as I am without learning all sides of the business I'm I'm, and applying that knowledge to working with a team who knows just as much as I do. In today's world, it's just not enough to be one sided in anything. One has to understand all the inner workings of their business. How good would I have been at selling financial products if I didn't start with learning how to count cash? The same question was asked in this blog earlier: how good can a designer be without being taught how to draw?

I think the School of Informatics needs to get in touch with the people who make this school what it is: the students. What do they need, what, expect of their institution? This is the only way to make a good school incredible.

Monday, June 11, 2012


When I decided to share my fear of intimacy with the rest of the class, I thought I would get a cold reaction. People share too much information with me sometimes, and I tend to shy away, so I naturally expected the same reaction; maybe I shy away because I feel the sensitive information flies too close to my proverbial flight control tower of intimacy. All that aside, I didn’t expect at all that others would relate.

On the contrary, a couple people in the group have shared in my same fear. In fact, Robert’s fear was the same thing, and his was because of similar past experiences. Though, a lot of the conversation that spawned from my presentation did not go as in depth as I would have expected from the conversations that resulted in other presentations. With that said, I feel that in a way some in the class didn’t really know how to converse about my fears, and after thinking about this for the past few days, I can only determine that they haven’t been where I’ve been and therefore have not been through the same life filters that I’ve been through. I think this is completely understandable. I think the only way I could have made this presentation better would have been to have the class meet in a social environment and actually show them all how hard it is for me to engage in conversation with a random woman. It’s almost laughable. For as good as I am at talking to new clients or even new people in general, I’m a bumbling idiot when it comes to the opposite sex.

During my presentation, I was given an assignment to illustrate how my fear makes me feel. I sat for a couple hours a few nights ago and sketched what came out over and over again. Nothing but garbled mess came out. I’m going to continue to work on this illustration, perhaps using different mediums until I find the right one to get across what I want. I’ve become so fluent in digital tools (i.e. Illustrator, Photoshop) that I feel I may be better suited to use these for at least some of the creative process. Perhaps I’ll even delve into the same approach Beth is taking on her piece and go back and forth between digital and traditional arts.

Obviously, with as personal as my fear is and as hard as it was to share, I had the strongest reaction from my own presentation; that is, until Robert’s. It was actually somewhat refreshing to know that someone else is experiencing something similar to what I’m dealing with. While we don’t have the same past, they are similar in some ways, and it’s interesting to see that someone can have a similar fear as me, though I also empathize and do not at all wish it on anyone else. Because of this discovery, I feel like I’m going back to the drawing board on how to cope with my fear of intimacy. Perhaps I’ve been going about it the wrong way. Instead of worrying about it, I may start to forget it even exists and let the future come to me. I have much more important things to handle at the moment, and if one day I meet someone who wants to share in my life experiences, then I’ll pursue it. But for now, life is good, life is great. I have all that I can ask for, and it can’t really get much better.

I hope everyone else found the peace I did from this assignment.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Fear Class Reaction Hypothesis

My biggest fear is a mixture of intimacy and rejection. Since this mixture of fears comes from some serious personal experiences, which I plan to share (against my better judgement), I expect everyone to be very uncomfortable and reject me, because I know I would feel uncomfortable if someone shared personal information of as sensitive of a topic as I will be sharing.

That is all.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

If Only I Could Do What I Loved

When I was a little boy, I wanted to be anything but what I was. I wanted to be taller, faster, attractive, like all the other boys I went to school with. I wanted the cutest girl in the whole first grade. I was the young Don Quixote of Wanamaker, Indiana at the age of five.

What was significant about that age? My mother was able to stay home with me and my three other siblings, including my brother who was faster, taller, more athletic, and better looking. He was all I ever wanted to be, and he was also all I knew. When I went to school, I was surrounded by kids that were just like him, and nothing like me.

Then I grew up.

When I was 10, my mother enrolled me in drum set lessons. It was then that I realized I was finally better at something than everyone else. from that moment on, I wanted to do nothing but drum. I won a world championship when I was 17, gigged all the way through high school, marched a Division I drum corps at 19, then stopped playing.

Having a child changes everything.

12 years and two marriages later, I decided to start playing again, and I will never stop again. If I could do anything for the rest of my life, one thing that would make me happy, it would be to drum.

The child who I gave it all up for? He plays now too, and he also has that love for my art. Coincidence? MayBe. But I doubt it. I was made for it, and I fully believe he was made for it too. Our relationship is stronger because of drumming.

It is where my heart lies. It is where my peace resides. It is where I fall in love every time I play. It is something I don't have to be bigger, faster, or more handsome to do. I am myself when i play, and it is the only time I love myself in my entirety.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Chris & Bob

This is just a glimpse of the fun I had imagining these two bobble heads interacting.  I noticed Chris Sabo sitting on my night stand, and thought to myself how traumatic his life had been so far (you can't see his broken leg in these photos; I also took some random stuff off of him for the pictures as well).  My son, James, thinks Chris is the coolest toy ever.

I don't think Chris likes James too much.

Thinking about Chris and James made me wonder what bobble heads would talk about if they were alive.  So, I grabbed a Bob Uecker bobble head, put them together, and watched them converse over coffee.

this is what they talked about, amongst other things:

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The Egg and the Eye

When I think of an egg, I think of breaking it.  So, with my egg in mind, I wanted to find a different way to break it, and decided that I'd give it a shot with a creepy little monkey toy I found in my son's room.  As you may notice, I decided to color spots onto it first... :

Then, I smashed it with the monkey, which he looks very proud of...