The Reflections unit was all about exploring the question Who am I? In each project of this unit we were exploring or finding different parts of ourselves and putting it out for the world to see. Through After Effects, Premiere Pro, and Pro Tools I learned a lot about myself as well as a lot about the applications. Learning more about myself has made me become for decisive which I had a lot of trouble before. It also helped me understand what passions I have and what I wouldn’t want to pursue later in my life.
For my personal essay I choose to write about a story that helped me become for comfortable with myself and accepting my shortcomings. The process of writing the essay involved a lot of brainstorming. It took me a long time to come up with what I wanted to write about that showed who I am as a person.
I was never a big fan of my own voice, but I constantly have to use it. As a goalie, an important part of my job is to use my voice to direct my players to where I want them to be; positioning my players correctly could be the difference between scoring or not. I also sing in a church choir, and at school speaking was unavoidable with presentations to give in front of the class. The worst part about giving speeches or presentations was always that I could hear my voice echo flatly off the wall behind the students and I would have to listen to it throughout the speech. Though I was comfortable in a conversation, I hated listening to my own voice.
So I panicked when I was given an assignment where I had to edit my own voice. The assignment was to make a parody of a song, rewrite the lyrics and sing it ourselves. Because it involved editing our own voice it meant that I had to listen to myself singing over and over again. However, I began to realize that it wasn’t going to be as hard as I originally thought. I chose A-ha’s “Take On Me” as my song. This song is known for a hopelessly high note which I knew I couldn’t hit. Setting myself up for failure was the best thing that could have happened. I lowered what I expected of myself so it became easier to sing and easier to listen to myself sing as I edited the sound. When I had finished editing, I was sure that what I had created was great, and I even sang in someone else’s song after they heard my song. Finally, it was time to listen to the songs in class. I was incredibly nervous. My hands were sweating, my armpits were drenched, and I was bouncing my legs up and down. It felt as if I had been sprinting through a rainforest. I was counting down the songs that were played until we got to mine. I knew instantly when my song was playing just by the first note. Waiting for the first words in the song felt like an eternity. Then it happened. My voice was coming from the speaker but I wasn’t listening to it. Instead I was listening to my classmates laughter, and I was laughing too. My class loved the song. It was in no way perfect, but it was perfect to laugh at. Nobody could break my good mood that day.
When the next class presentation came around I was not nervous. I didn’t dread showing it off to the class. I became more confident at directing my teammates. I sang with more confidence in the choir. And I realized to accept the things that I may not be so good at, because I can only get better at them.
The assignment for this project was to rant about anything we wanted then create a video using After Effects to make the rant more interesting. I love white cheddar Cheez-Its, they are by far my favorite snack, so I wanted to rant about why I thought they were the best snack. I thought why not show more about who I am then describe why my favorite snack is my favorite.
The video essay was a film project where we were asked to create a film that showed the way that you think. For my video I wanted to show what goes through my mind when I’m trying to have a conversation but it isn’t working out. I wanted to try to capture the awkwardness of the conversation.
To film the project I went to my high school with a couple of friends. I first blocked out what I wanted actors to do, like where to stop walking and where to have a little conversation, then finally where to exit the scene. I filmed the actors as they followed their blocking and continued to do this until I had multiple angles. A couple challenges that I faced during the filming of this was that we didn’t have any light to work with other than the sun, so whenever a cloud happened to go over the sun we had to cut. To edit the video I used Premiere Pro and spliced the clips that I took over a couple days and matched them up with my voice. Another challenge that I ran into was getting the correct amount of footage for the length that I was talking about each topic. I wanted to match up clips that I had so they transitioned as soon as I moved on to a new topic.
This was the first time that I had used Premiere Pro so it was a learning experience which I had a lot of help with from my classmates. However I still experimented on my own to see what I could do. In the photo below you can see me slightly adjusting the colors in each clip to make them look the best. Overall this project helped me understand that people found this funny because it was relatable and that I wasn’t the only one who had awkward conversations.