Author: ampersichetti

Taking a look back

This class has be an adventure for me to say the least.  Coming in with no CSS or HTML experience was not the norm; however, I learned a lot throughout the process.  Looking back on the semester I am very pleased with the progress that I made- I not only learned how to work with a variety of different programs, I learned to not give up on a project (as cliche as that sounds).  There are many times throughout this semester where I just wanted to give up on something when it was not going the way I wanted (i’m sure Instructor Campbell will back me up on the fact that many things in these programs were not going my way!) but I learned to keep putting effort into the project.  

Trying to remember all of the different readings and projects we reflected on this semester, there was one that popped into my mind.  For some reason, I was very drawn in by the photo essay: Children and Their Bedrooms (I even showed it to all of my roommates bragging about how cool it was). **Side note on this: I looked it up recently and think I found pictures that we didn’t look at before (or I just don’t remember them).  Either way, this one is my new favorite: 


This project was the most helpful for me personally in retrospect to the photo essay we had to do because it really showed me the power of photographs and how they can tell an entire story.

Where do I see this website going in the future is something I ask myself a lot.  In the beginning of the year I was almost certain that I was going to get rid of dreamweaver and creative cloud right after the class was over, but, recently I have been wrestling with this.  I am contemplating keeping this for next year when I travel abroad to keep journals and blog posts on (this is all dependent on my parents willingness to pay of course).  

Overall, this class and the projects included in it opened my eyes to a whole new skill.  I never thought of myself of being some tech-savvy or someone that was good with computers, this class helped me gain way on this a little bit.  Although it was a lot of work I am very happy with my progress and I can almost say that I have survived composing digital media!

Easy Human Cloning Tutorial

Hey everyone! So I remember in class someone commenting on how they liked how one of the short videos we watched had cloning of the person so I figured I would look up how to do this.  The tutorial I found was pretty easy. Since I don’t have the video camera (and for this tutorial I couldn’t use my phone because the video camera needs to be still/not moving) I used shots from the tutorial online.  However, I went through the editing part with another video and it’s very simple!

For this one there are only three clones (each time you add another clone it becomes more difficult).  To begin, you want to shoot the shot (with the same background) as many times as you want.  After you shoot the video you are going to upload all of them into the software and push them together (eliminating the cuts you don’t want a.k.a. you walking in and out of the scene.

Here are the three scenes that I am working with:



After you eliminate all of the scenes you don’t want put the three clips on top of each other like this: Image


Okay now here comes the tricky part, manipulating them. Go over to the effects bar or window and search matte, and click on 8 point garbage matte (you can do 4 and 16 also depending on your shot). Now 8 points will show up on the shot around the screen of the movie.  You want to drag those lines, and what do those do you may ask?  Well those control what will show up from the other layers of the shots you have (a.k.a what you will see from the shots on top of your main shot).  This is what I am talking about if you are confused: Image

You see those dots- thats what you can move around and again it will bring some of the other layers. Take your time with this because you want the background to match up (aka the lighting matching up, shadows, etc)

HELPFUL HINT: make sure you are clicked on the layer you are letting show when picking the matte option.

Then after going through all the dots and such you should have your clones as shown below!


There are many other ways to do this (I watched like 3 other tutorials).  However, this one I found was the easiest.  Hope this helps you guys!

A brief humorous history of John Baledessari

“A Brief History of John Baledessari” is an up tempo humorous retelling of the life of a great artist.  After watching the three options for the blog entry I was most intrigued by Baledessari’s video portrait.  Not only is it attention getting, it also has impressive video editing as well as interesting shots and pictures.

This video has a unique audio-visual storytelling feature I believe.  It uses video, voiceovers, and pictures to tell one fluid story.  The quick cuts of pictures as well as the quick cuts of past videos Baledessari’s shot I believe gives it it’s own tone/ feeling. It makes it both causal as well as fun. When I first think of documentary my immediate thought is a long boring history lesson.  However, Baledassari gives us his own take on “documentary.”  He inserts his personality into the audio clip and makes it more relatable for the audience.

As Annie said in her blog post, from this video it seems as if Baledassari has a very dry sense of humor- which he shows through the set up of this video.  He inserts the cuts of him sitting at his desk talking at perfect locations to highlight his humor.  In addition, the topics highlighted in the video highlight his humor.  He prefers to talk about the “fun” aspects of his life, not drone on about all of the awards that he has won.  Both of these features add to this video as well as make it more “John”.

One thing that I can take from this video moving forward is that you do not have to have the person being highlighted narrate the story.  This video portrait uses another individual to tell a story, as contrasted to the ones that we watched in class.  For the project my group and I need to complete I believe it would be easier for us to narrate the story (due to time constraints) and this video is a good example on how to do that.

Question for class discussion:

How quick is too quick for different cuts? Did Baledessari loose some of his viewers with this tactic?

How to get rid of background noise/ static on audacity

For some people (including myself) when you record you can hear some static or background noise.

First record a segment. Image

as you see the little bumps in the line are static (places where you aren’t talking but noise is being recorded)

To fix this you first highlight those sections of the audio file (just the part that has static)

After you have that highlighted you go to effects and click on noise removal. Image and then click on get noise profile.

After that you want to select the entire audio file (command a on a mac), or you can just highlight it if that is easier for you.

Go up to the effect button again and then click on noise removal again. Make sure you have the settings at the maximum settings (pictured below).

Image and make sure noise removed is clicked.

After that the noise or static should be removed. You can tell by comparing the picture below to the original picture that I posted. Hope that helped everyone! Image

a mixture of silence and sound

The Lament for Joe Hall was a very strong audio journal.  The way it began was very powerful and emotion provoking—the constant flow of beeping, the arguing, and the other faint sounds.  Just these first 10 or so seconds produced a strong feeling inside of me.  It felt somewhat depressing, almost preparing the audience for what was about to come.

The different noises in the background fading in and out were my favorite part about this audio journal. The layering of these noises added to the emotions produced.  The author used both noises as well as muffled talking in the back.  The muffled talking in the back made it more realistic to me.  It almost gave off the impression that this story was unfolding in front of you, not being recounted from the past.

In addition to the sounds, the silence was powerful as well.  In a majority of the parts where the boy was speaking (pretending to be Joe Hall) there was no background noise.  This was important because it forced the audience to focus on the words and the story being told.  If there were different sounds or background noises the whole time it would have been very distracting to the audience trying to understand and process what was being said.

This example of an audio journal really helped me think of ideas and ways to improve my own.  I learned that sounds in the background can both add and hurt your piece.  When first figuring out what I wanted to do for this project I kept trying to think of a lot of different background noises.  However, I learned from this project that focusing on the main story as opposed to using many background noises can be equally as powerful.  In addition, I learned that this project does not have to be connecting to you in anyway. This story was a strong emotional story that was told through the eyes of Joe Hall, not through the eyes of the student.

Making Your Text Appear 3D

Making your text look as though it is 3D is actually a lot simpler than it sounds.  I watched a couple of tutorials on this trick; however, the easiest one I found was dealing with “text-shadow.”  For this trick you kind of get to play around with how you want it to look.  The basic outline of the CSS code looks as followed:Image

(from the website:


You can play around with the pixels and colors to get it to match your background perfectly.  I tried it on my recovery story project and it was a little more difficult because I had a picture as a background so the color was not matching up perfectly.  If you are using a solid color as your background this trick may be a lot easier to do.  

Image this is what my title looked like before adding the text shadow (or the 3D look)


Imageand this is how it looks after.  As you can tell I played around with the colors a lot to get the right shadow.  This is what you will need to do to make it look right for your text and background color.  Hope you guys found this helpful!

Inviting With A Picture

At first I was drawn to this website by the colorful and vibrant front cover.  I really like how the web designer chooses this picture to be the background.  I believe the color scheme (the reds and yellows) fit well with the theme of the website as well (Fall).  After browsing the web design gallery I realized I was drawn to many of the websites that accentuated a picture as the background.  I believe this technique draws in an audience and makes them focus on the information—something I would like to use in my own website. 

In addition the navigation of this sight is quite simple.  As you scroll down the front page it almost gives off the feeling of flipping a page.  As each page flips it also keeps with the original theme of pictures. (Other pages shown below.)




 I think keeping with this theme is very important.  I really do not like when websites are sporadic and do not keep the same idea throughout their entirety. 

This particular webpage is highlighting the many events and places to go in Tennessee if you are visiting in the fall.  Again, I believe the picture theme is a great idea for this purpose.  When people come looking to this webpage they want to feel an inviting tone and almost persuaded why they should come to Tennessee.  For my webpage I am thinking about maybe incorporating my photo recovery pictures to the front of my page to make it more interesting and vibrant.

Another aspect of this webpage that I enjoy is that there is not too many hyperlinks.  Each different scroll page on the home screen has one as well as the header (as seen in the first picture).  This is something that I would like to incorporate into my webpage.  I believe when there is too many hyperlinks it is confusing and overwhelming to the audience; therefore, I believe containing most of them to the header is a very helpful technique.   

Lastly, the variations of fonts adds a creative and personalized touch.  Using the same font throughout your entire webpage can be boring (unless it is for a very professional purpose).  For my webpage, like this webpage, I would like to incorporate many different fonts.