Branching Video

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This is a journey through India – between Delhi to Mumbai. The structure is non-linear though the beginning and end are the same, whichever route one takes, but the experience is different.

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Sketch 5 – Doggy Investigations

While I was working on capturing the rain drops on my small lotus pond, my dog got the curiosity bug. He thought I had either lost my mind or found something in the lotus pond that he had missed the last he went digging!

The spontaneity I caught in this video was actually the actions of my dog. I’m sure he didn’t really think I’m crazy out of my head. He came to investigate, sniffed for clues, got bored and left! This automatically got me thinking about reflexes and the spontaneity in them, or our habits and the spontaneity that spawns out of those. I have explored this thought further in my sketches ahead.

Another thing that I really liked in this video were the angles and the colour shades. The angles for me were never straight and it is not something I was trying to achieve per say. Which brings me to think that maybe it is just really hard to film a perfectly upright image with our phones, especially when they are handheld during shooting.

The colours in this video are all earthy and belong to the same family. But at the same time, they look very bright and aesthetically pretty. Compositions sometimes can really work wonders, without any thoughts, I guess.

Sketch 4 – Raindrops are falling on my head

With this video, I was going for an abstract quality kind of imagery. It was drizzling and the world just looked a little bit brighter and more colourful. I have always loved the rains and as I sat outside, sipping a cup of chai, I thought, well even my horrible phone camera can’t miss the beauty of the rains! I wasn’t disappointed. I got a close up shot of the water drops falling in to the lotus pot outside.

While doing this, I noticed a few things other than the pretty colours. The rain drops were forming the smallest ripples in the water. I could catch the reflection in the water, while capturing the bottom of the pot and everything in that murky water as well. In theory, a pot full of compost and in the rains should not look good, but there it was, a pretty picture just waiting to be clicked.

While noticing the composition, I was thinking of what Sabine, a fellow group member, was saying the other day in class. Reflections are her discovery. The spontaneous collection of aesthetically beautiful things to form a composition which is not planned in advance, but just comes into perception while reviewing the video is pretty genius.

The only issue I faced with this particular shoot was a cold cup of Chai that I completely forgot about and a slightly wet phone!

Raise Your Voice – The making

The making of the game “Raise your Voice” with Tim and Isabel as my partners was a really great time, but it took a really long time as well. Making animated videos for the game was really fun and I got to try out my skills, that I have developed this semester, which was great for me. The app itself was very complicated. It isn’t something we are actually posting on Twitter as we made the game keeping The Loboc Choir in mind and posting it would require permissions we do not have.

What Worked Amazingly:

I absolutely agree with Tim, when he says that it was probably one of the best group to work in. I think we worked really well together and all of us took up the job we thought would be best suited to our skills, but at the same time, we were never isolated from what each of us were doing. I think that is really important when it comes to team activity. I was responsible for making the marketing video, which Tim really helped me out with. The picture used is one he got while he was in Bohol. The song recorded is also both of us rapping! Isabel was responsible for making the decision tree for our game whilst Tim wrote the synopsis and the motivation for playing the game.

The game itself I think is really straight forward and short, which, according to some recent market surveys I saw, works really well now-a-days on social media. The element of being able to share it with yours friends on your timelines is also great and something we can look at going viral, which is our main aim to spread awareness about the group and their impending visit.

I really like that with this game it can be a group of friends who do it together as well as individual, which recent similar apps like MyIdol don’t allow.

Everything has negatives:

The app – Autorap was a little bit nuts to tell you the truth. We used it to create our own song but getting it downloaded on our computers as an mp3 was next to impossible. We could share it on social media, no problem, but the app doesn’t allow you to download your music which I think is not cool. When people have something like this, they might want to keep it with them offline or on their phones which isn’t possible yet.

The other part of course is our lack of being able to share it due to copyright permissions from The Loboc Choir.

Overall, the game in our eyes is a success but it is something we can’t test out just yet. Hopefully, Tim will be able to get permission to do so and we might be able to do what we started. So, we would love to have the chance to invite people to Raise their Voices and be a part of something that has come to be very important to us.

Hashtags

Over the past month, I have been doing quiet a bit of research on hashtags as I am in charge of the Twitter page for the story we are creating for our CMWP class. Twub has been really helpful, so much so that I actually did not need to use any other search website. Our digital story is about a fictional Indian girl who is in love with spices. Spices have a lot of attributes which are believed to contribute to our lives. For example, cinnamon is a spice for love, often referred to as the Queen of spices. Our story follows her journey of self-discovery as she cooks various recipes to help change her life around.

For this I was succesful with hashtags like indiangirl, recipes, spiceandherbbible, travelindia, goa and a few others. I came across a lot of what people write or enquire about and got some great insights not only for our story but our audience research as well. I discovered that tomato and coconut based curries are more looked at or discussed than any other type. I also found a lot of stuff which added to my knowledge of the indian girl mindset. Being an Indian girl myself, you would probably find that thought really funny, but our story is about a very different girl who grows in different circumstances altogether. My most important or helpful discovery was what I actually got when I searched spiceandherbbible, which was a suggestion on the search bar. It turned out to be a book that people were discussing but I actually got a website name of one of the posts which led me to an entire list of spices and what they stand for.

All in all, I think my hashtag research really helped me out and I would suggest that you all try it out too for your projects. More than most times you find stuff which might not do anything for you but if you keep an open mind, the least it will do is tell you what audience you are looking at.

Colour Me Blue

A Road to NowhereScreenshot (1)

This is a screenshot of my original video. It was taken in the afternoon light travelling down a road. I tried playing with quiet a bit and some of the effects I created were pretty awesome.

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With this Screenshot, I make the picture look sunnier by reducing the shadows that you can see in my original shot. It looks like a hot afternoon’s shot, doesn’t it? To do this all I did was use three way colour corrector and bend the three colour grades towards reddish and greenish tones along with reducing the intensity of the image.

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In this clip, I simply moved the colour correction towards more pinkish tones to get an older times look to it. Those days with crappy cameras and hippie eras. This road of Goa has been photographed in such colours quiet a few times and I love the fact that I was actually able to imitate it somewhat.Screenshot (8)

In this image, I used both the Luma Curve as well as the Three Way Colour Corrector. The curve looked more like an S rather than a diagonal line when I was done with it and I tried to increase the shadowwing to give it a dawn kind of feel. The day is just starting.

Taj Mahal

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Before doing anything, this was a shot of Taj Mahal, taken early on a winter morning.

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In this shot I dimmed the brightness and increased contrast by 27%. I also increased the red tones using three way colour corrector. I did this to make Taj Mahal stand out, to create focus on it.

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This I think is my coolest effect. I kept the contrast and brightness levels I had set in the previous image and added the change colours effect. I then played with the hue, saturation and lightness.   I did this to achieve another way of making my Taj Mahal stand out which it didn’t in the original shot.

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In this picture I increased the colour balance, mostly red and green. I also increased the contrast a little bit. It now looks like I’m at the start of telling an ancient tale. This would probably be an opening shot.

Sunburn – Music festival

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This is an original video I made at the Sunburn festival in Goa. As you may notice the quality is pretty bad. So I did a few things, check it out.

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I thought this was really cool for a credits scene. It helps the logo to really stand out. I did this by lowering the brightness and incresing the contrast. I also used the three way colour corrector to increase the pinkish tones.

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For this image I played with the RGB curves to make the image look like there was more than just blue lighting. I like the way the colour combines together. It’s great for music festivals.

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To take the lighting out completely, I used Video Limiter. It changed my image to black and white while still leaving the logos in colour. It’s a pretty cool thing to do because if you actually imagined doing it, it sounds next to impossible or at least a lot of work.

Audio Editing Software

There are quiet a few ways in which you can add your own music, a podcast or any audio for that matter onto your blog. In her flipped lecture, Jenny talks about two such ways – Audacity and Garageband. Both of these are free softwares you can easily download. Garageband is available only on Apple products. I did some research and found another software that you can use – Podbean. The advantage of Podbean is that you can use it to store your music online and it provides an embedded music player that you can use on your blog. When downloading Audacity, make sure that you do not download the beta version till you are a computer whizz. After trying it out, I also suggest using your own microphone and not depending on the inbuilt one on your laptop.

The actual usage of these softwares is pretty easy as we are all familiar with the various button types, like play, record, stop, forward and the like. Jenny uses various youtube videos to explain how to use the software. I think this is the best way to go if you have a problem while using it. Play around with what you can do and you can pretty much just go from there. The Podbean application can be used to put your audio on the blog. You can do this by uploading your audio on Podbean, getting the code it generated and posting the code on your blog. What this will do is embed a player with your audio file on there and you are set.

I think the difficulty comes in actually deciding the content of your podcasts or audio files and I found this really good blog which has a decent number of tips which you can listen to and decide on what to follow.

http://theaudacitytopodcast.com/

I think podcasts are a great way to attract people to your blog. With millions of blogs out there, I find that finding one with an audio file is just welcoming and a relief truthfully. Rest your eyes, lie back or sit with a cup of tea and listen away. Makes life much easier I think and can really stand out in the crowd. Music is also a great way of convincing someone to stay on your site and explore it more.

I plan on using several podcasts in my interactive story as a way of inviting people to take interest and interact more with my idea. It is a good way to introduce different people’s interests and personality on a social media which is a major part of my story. My group and I are discussing something along the lines of digitally arranging marriages for which we need several characters we shall be introducing and some of the introduction will be done through different episodes or even varying formats of podcasts.

I was doing some research on this and I really like some different podcasts – music and intro podcasts that I might get ideas from for my blog. Some of the stuff I found:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode/arranged-marriages-can-be-real-love-10-03-11/

This one talks about the believe in the western world that arranged marriages are loveless marriages, which can be refuted. I also love the length they have used for the podcasts restricting it to only a minute. I would want to set that as an average time for the podcasts that I use in my project.

These are a bunch of pod interviews with some bollywood stars. I like it. If you think you have some great pods you would like to share, which might help with my research, comment!