This is my weekly summary for the first week of ds106, which went by smoothly for the most part, but certainly with a little bit of a learning curve. I definitely got more confident and excited for the course as I worked through the assignments, going from overwhelmed and anxious to ridiculously excited and having a grand time. The first thing I did was create my website, which went pretty smoothly- at least it did once I realized I was not supposed to use wordpress.com! I didn’t purchase anything, thankfully, just sat at my desk, confused, until I decided to reread the assignment’s details. Getting creative with my ds106 subdomain and making it look all cute was a nice way to ease into the process; it gave me some confidence in my ability to do the things this class requires. Its definitely a little bit cheesy, but that suits my personality and I’m really happy with they way it turned out.
After my subdomain was up and running, I decided to create my accounts, which went even more smoothly than the website formation! I created the twitter first, then the instagram, then youtube, then soundcloud. Creating the accounts was the easy part though. My twitter post was relatively trouble-free; however, I did have to force myself a little bit more concise than I usually am.
But not to fear! Because there is no character limit the other platforms! After Twitter, I took to Instagram, because it was the one I was most familiar with, and captioned a little bit more elaboration- still pretty basic, “I’m excited and am a student” type stuff- and paired it with a photo of myself that’s a pretty good representation of me but toned-down; I have a huge affinity for silk flowers and LOVE craft stores, but am not usually as ~chill~ as that photo makes me seem. Regardless, a lovely photo and a good pictoral introduction to me!
After my instagram post, I realized it was time to finally face Youtube, the platform I had been dreading. Not only did it require some kind of editing skills, but I would have to record myself and hear my own voice, and although I generally have good self-confidence, that just ain’t it chief. I was planning on filming my video in my dorm, but was unable to because my roommate was hanging out with a friend in the dorm. Reluctantly, I set off to the HCC, hoping to find an empty room where nobody would see me. I ended up in a conference-type room in the basement floor, with GLASS WALLS. I was mad pressed, but powered through for the sake of ds106!
Fortunately, once I started filming I realized just how much FUN it was. It was absolutely brilliant, playing around with my “set” and tweaking my “lines”, I had so much fun that I completely forgot all of my insecurities. While filming the first part of my video, I did a “take”, and was pretty pleased with it, but wanted to do one more to see if I could get it any better. So I stopped the camera, reset my props, and went through the process one more time- only to realize that I never restarted the camera. So I re-watched the take I did have and decided it was Good Enough (not just because I was lazy, I did legitimately like it!). I did all of the filming on my phone, and all the footage was pretty high quality, but I ran into trouble exporting it onto my computer, which is actually the problem I was Least expecting to run into. I spent about an hour trying to figure out what was up, plugging my phone into my laptop to do it that way- to no avail-; trying to email the footage as an attachment- to no avail-; downloading the OneDrive app on my phone to modify the video file type- to no avail. I was definitely mad frustrated, but I finally ended up getting the video onto my computer using some kind of icloud option in my email. Honestly I’m not really sure what it was, but it got the footage to my computer so I was not about to question it. I used the editing software that came pre-downloaded onto my computer, which, although quite basic, got the job done, and ended up with a video that I am Ridiculously proud of. I had so much fun making it, and I really think it captured most of the essence of who I am. So I sent it to my entire family and my close friends. For validation. Which I received. Because it is a brilliant video!!
I think it is important to note that I currently have one (1) subscriber, and it’s my mother! Who made a gmail account solely to subscribe to my channel! Which is positively lovely! Validation aside, making the video was actually way more fun than I thought it was going to be, so now I high key want to make more, which I will likely be doing! So that was a fun outcome of ds106 week one!
My final introduction was on SoundCloud, where I decided to spice up my intoductions by sharing my current favorite words. The main theme of my favorite words is those that are fun to say, like “wahoo” and “bonkers.” The SoundCloud intro was easier than I thought it would be, simply a matter of saying everything correctly and not butchering word order!
After the introductions (and the mega-intro blog post that you can find here: )
came the reflection on 80’s pop culture. My mind, after the initial vibes of Big Hair and Flashy Neon, goes immediately to Broadway shows, and then to the AIDS crisis, so I tried to figure out how I could connect all of those together. I think my thoughts on 80’s pop culture were a little bit too serious, I focused more on the underlying chaos and issues than on the culture itself, but once I started, I couldn’t- and didn’t want to- stop. It began with the realization that the big hair neon stereotype was so pervasive that it seemed to be hiding something, trying desperately to seem normal and to mask underlying chaos and horrific things happening. The film I watched, Night of the Comet, was a super interesting supplement to my thoughts. The whole “last 4 people on earth because everyone else is either dead or a zombie” plot of the movie certainly contributed and supported my thesis of “there was some underlying ANGST in the 80’s that The Man ™ does not want us to think about”. Another super interesting tidbit was the transition of Regina from a strong, independent female character, who holds all of the records on the theatre video game and who was ready to shoot anybody who threatened her, into a very stereotypical housewife and mother figure. That transition, and given that the ending is a “happy ending”, implies some interesting things about the role of women (see: they need to be mothers and also to have a Strong Male Figure), which would track, because cultures in chaos tend to revert to more traditional gender roles and ways of thinking. You can read all about it here!
Overall, week one of ds106 has got me mad pumped for the rest of the course. I really enjoy the creative outlet and the way it has (already) forced me to hone my problem-solving skills. I’m really hope to learn more video editing skills, maybe download some better software with more features, but am definitely also excited for all the other aspects of ds106. The 80’s pop culture theme is going to be fun to work with, and hopefully I will find a better balance of serious and lighthearted moving forward. Until next week!
an important ps! as of submitting this weekly summary i have two (2) subscribers! the new addition is one of the close friends I sent the video to! i’m on my way to full-fledged influencer!