Final Blog Post

I have learned many new computer and multimedia skills through this class during the semester. I have never been tech savvy, but I now feel comfortable uploading audio, pictures, and text to programs like SoundCloud, Audacity, and WordPress. I never thought I would be able to write an html code, but I feel like I learned the basics of the coding of an internet site.

I learned how to edit audio and make it smooth and clean as opposed to my choppy edits at the beginning of the semester.  I will most likely use uploading sound clips, photos, and text to websites in my future endeavors, as well as editing audio.

I want to write for a major music magazine one day, preferably Rolling Stone, so I will be using web reporting and “writing in chunks” in the future. I feel like I have developed the skill for online writing by using short and precise sentences, because online readers are more like online scanners.

This class did not necessarily help me choose a career path, but it definitely taught me many skills that I will most likely use in my future career, while boosting my confidence in the ever evolving world of technology.

The skill I wish I had learned in this course is video editing. I have played around with video editing on a minor scale for some projects in high school, but I wish I could have practiced more and become skilled at adding music to videos, creating smooth transitions, and timing certain frames to beats.

My favorite project this semester was probably this last one, because I got to choose a subject that I am really passionate about, and explore the live music scene in Laramie even further. I loved going to shows and taking pictures and experiencing the surprising amount of live music that Laramie has to offer.

Individual SoundSlides Project

Here is the link to my SoundSlides project.

My SoundSlides assignment highlighted the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization in Laramie, Wyoming. I interviewed the regional director, Barbara Humphreys, and the site based coordinator, Marsha Halbach. The purpose of the assignment is to provide basic information on Big Brothers Big Sisters, such as: their main goals, activities they participate in around the community, and how to get involved if one is interested.

Working alone for this project was definitely more challenging than with a partner. I had to work harder with the audio editing this time, because Caleb was more skilled at it last time. I liked working with a partner better than working alone because I felt more organized and at ease with a partner.

It was interesting to interview the ladies behind the Laramie branch of this organization; they truly care about making successful matches and seeing the children thrive. It was really inspiring to talk to such passionate people about the organization. It was also great to learn more about the organization that I have been working with for almost a year.

Barbara Humphreys and Marsha Halbach told me that their biggest problem with Big Brothers this year is that they do not have enough male volunteers. I was surprised to hear this, and hope that this project will inspire more men to get involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

I struggled with the second interview because the audio is significantly quieter than the first interview. I also struggled with pictures for this project. I ended up using older pictures from past volunteering experience that I took and thought were relevant and worked with the story. I would change some of the photos if I could, and go back and ask Barbara Humphreys to speak up in her interview. I would also work a little longer on the audio editing portion, because there are a few choppy sections that I was not completely pleased with.

Group SoundSlides Project Critiques

I really liked the photos of Rhanden Lind and Tracey Rosenlund’s “GrotesquesSoundSlide project. I thought the photo quality was amazing and filled with very interesting and relevant images.

  • Audio critique: I thought that there was quite a bit of ambient noise during the interview that made it difficult to understand what the interviewees were saying. I think they did a good job with the cuts;
    they were clean and smooth.
  • Photo critique: I thought the photos were extremely well done and very creative. The quality was amazing and the photos
    were synchronized with the audio very well.
  • Storytelling critique: I thought that the story flowed very well between interviewees. I think it ended well and not too

I think the story and photos were really well done in Zak Bolender and Justin Trygg’s  “Wish Upon a Zombie“. The zombie walk was timely and a fun and interesting story.

  • Audio critique: I thought the audio flowed well and the ambient noise in the beginning was relevant. I could hear the interviewees clearly, and the cuts were clean. The only time the audio was off was at the end when someone kept talking and then it ended abruptly.
  • Photo critique: I thought the photos were fun and flowed well with the audio. The subtitles at the bottom were a bit small,
    but other than that the photos were well done and creative.
  • Storytelling critique: I thought the story flowed very well, and was easy to follow. However, the story ended abruptly.

I liked the subject of the story for Zach Greubel and Peter Stevens’ “Mitch Kunce: A Brewing Artisan in Laramie“. The Library Sports Grille and Brewery has been around for a long time, and I love it, so the story really interested me.

  • Audio Critique: The first interview was fairly easy to hear, with just a bit of background ambient noise, but I could barely
    hear the second interview (of the bar patron) because there was too much background noise that it drowned him out. Other than that, I liked the ambient noise of the beer pouring.
  • Photo critique: I really enjoyed the photos in this project. I thought they were creatively done, and loved the ones of the
    individual beers; they looked so good!
  • Storytelling critique:  I thought the story flowed nicely, and I appreciate that someone highlighted the man behind the brews finally.  It was a very interesting story.  I think the story ended abruptly.

After viewing other student’s work, I learned how to set up more creative photo shots. Instead of shooting something straight
on, get a different angle or get someone while they are talking and look

Final Project

Here is our final project link!

Final Project

The project topic that Caleb and I chose was a profile of two Laramie artists, Maddie
Costigan and Travis Ivey. We interviewed them about what inspires them, who
influences them, their specific styles, and where they hope their art will take
them one day. The purpose of this project was to highlight local artists and
inform people of their work.

Working with Caleb was a fun and easy experience. We had a great time exploring downtown
Laramie and taking pictures of all the art that is featured there. The
interviews went smoothly, and it was interesting to talk to local artists and
find out what goes into the work that they do. I really liked talking to the
artists themselves and looking around their apartments and seeing the art that
they have done in the past. I am not very creative, so it was really
interesting to see such an inventive and unique lifestyle in person.

Working with SoundSlides was a lot easier than I expected once I got started. I liked how
easy it was to work with the timing and organization of the pictures. The
titles and captions were easy to figure out as well. Overall, I think
SoundSlides is a really helpful and useful program for journalism majors.

We had problems uploading the photos to SoundSlides at first, so we had to go about it
a different way. We also had trouble exporting the project and posting it to
eCompanion when we were finished, but also figured out how to do that with some

If I had more time, I would change a few of the pictures to go along with the audio a
little better. I would also have liked to tell Travis Ivey to give more direct
answers, as his interview was all over the place. Overall, the project went
smoothly and I am pleased with the final product.

3 Story Ideas

Caleb and I had one idea to feature and interview local artists.
We want to see what inspires them around Laramie, show pictures of their work,
and pictures of the process. I think this story would be interesting
because there is so much amazing artwork around campus and downtown; it would
be great to show the faces behind the art. We would interview a few artists,
an art professor, along with the vendors downtown that buy and display
the artwork.

Another story idea is to feature the Big Brothers Big
Sisters program in Laramie. We would interview people who work there, people
who volunteer there, and also some of the Littles. This story is important
because not a lot of people are aware that this program exists in Laramie, and
is a great way to help out someone in the community.

The last story idea is to cover the study abroad program at
UW.  We would find information about the
program like: what do you need to do to study abroad, requirements, how much
money it would be, and where you could go. I think this story is interesting
because the study abroad program is a great program that students should take
advantage of while they go to school here at UW. Not many students know how
easy and affordable it is to study abroad, and it would be helpful to bring the
facts to light. We would interview students who have studied abroad, Ruth
Shepard (who is the study abroad coordinator) , and some exchange students that
have chosen UW as their host school.

Audio Profile Critiques

Jessica Peck: I really liked your edited audio profile. I
loved the subject of why your interviewee loves her hometown of Denver, CO. It
was interesting, and it was very smooth. I could barely tell where you cut your
interview down; the transitions were very clean and natural sounding. There was
no background noise that I could hear which is a really good element of your
interview. I could hear the interviewee very clearly. I honestly did not see
anything that needs critiquing in your audio profile, great job!

Patrick Pajak: Your edited audio profile is really good. I liked
that your edits were smooth and clean. I could not hear any noticeable background
noise. I liked the subject of the interview because I am also a journalism
major, but everyone might not be as interested in the journalism field. Maybe you
could have had him talk more about the sports aspect of his internship because
more people are interested in sports than journalism. The volume on the
interview could have been a little bit louder; I had to turn the volume up on
my computer to hear the interviewee clearly.

Marie Smith: My audio profile was a lot choppier and not as
clean as I wanted it to be. I wish I would have left more time in between
questions so I could have edited them more smoothly. I also wish there wasn’t
as much background noise in my audio profile. I learned that I need to give
myself more time on my next edited audio profile so that I can be sure the edits
sound clean and natural.  What surprised
me most about this assignment was the amount of time that it took to properly
edit down a five minute sound clip. I underestimated the tedious nature of audio

edited final audio profile

My audio editing experience was much more tedious than I thought it was going to be. I am not familiar with the Audacity program, so it was hard to get used to working with it. I did not realize that editing a small sound clip would take so long. I learned that simply cutting down an audio clip does not necessarily mean that the interview will flow together.

I did not like the selection tool because it limits area of what you can select by seconds and half seconds. I think my edits sounded glitchy because of this. I can tell where some words were cut off too soon or remnants of words were still in the clip. I also wish that you could see more of the time line that you area editing in Audacity, but I understand that space is limited.

I liked learning how to edit on my own. If in the future I need to do a professional interview, I will at least know the basics of editing audio interviews. It is good to know that even if something does not go right in an interview, you can always edit it out.

The amount of time that it took to edit such a short interview surprised me. I did not expect that. Also, the tedious nature of technology and having to deal with different internet programs surprised me. I thought I was decently acquainted with technology, but I felt lost in these new programs like Audacity and Sound Cloud.

I wish I could have left more time in between questions so that editing would have been easier. I also wish that I would have been smoother with my edits and perhaps played around with the sound faders. I can tell that it is choppy and does not flow as well as I would like it to.

Overall, I completely underestimated the tedious process of audio editing, but am glad that I am not familiar with it.

Raw Audio Profile

My interviewing experience was fairly easy and relaxed because I interviewed my friend Caleb Tillapaugh. We did the interview at Caleb’s apartment, so there was no one around or a lot of ambient noise to cause distraction during the process. The interview was pretty easy, I just prompted Caleb with a couple questions about his vacation; he was comfortable and spoke with ease.

Interviewing with the audio recorder was not as hard as I thought it was going to be at all. It was interesting to be the interviewer because you get to make people open up to you. I liked being on that end of the interview more than being the interviewee. When I was being interviewed, I felt like I rambled which I did not like. I also find it strange to hear the sound of my own voice on a recording device.

I learned that being in a comfortable setting without distractions is extremely important to having a successful interview. It helps so much when you can have the full attention and focus of the interviewee. Also interviewing in a quiet setting without much ambient noise is really helpful, so you don’t have to edit it out later.

I enjoyed interviewing Caleb because he is my friend, so it was fun and easy. It was interesting learning about his travels and experiences as well. I also enjoyed telling him about my travels because he made it really easy to open up.

I wish I had planned out my questions better, because there was one point where I blanked for a minute and Caleb had to help me out. I should have had the questions written down in front of me, instead of doing the interview by memory. Overall, my interview with Caleb went smoothly and without hassle.

Photo critiques

Alex Edwards: I really liked your pictures! You captured a lot of pure human emotion so
beautifully, which I love. I like how they don’t look posed. Little kids are
great to photograph because their emotions are so pure; you can tell exactly
what they are feeling through a facial expression alone. I think you did an
awesome job of capturing that.

The photo of the little boy in the hat is so adorable, I love it! He looks so focused on the
candy, it’s unbelievably cute. You did a really nice job of cropping out any
distractions in that photo.

I also really like the photo of the chicken coop through the wire; it is a really cool
and unusual way to capture that image.

I love the photo of the little boy throwing the football in the air. It is a fun alternative for the sports action
photo. I like how he is in focus, and the ball is kind of blurred; it shows
clear movement.

I think you could have stepped a little closer in order to physically crop out some of the empty space above his head.

I think the captions were good but they were not the most professional captions. Maybe try to steer away from the Facebook-like cute captions, and be more informative of who and what the photo
is about.

Although I like the leading lines and colors of the first photo (the sports action photo), the subject looks posed. The subject is staring straight into the camera and smiling. I feel like some of the other flag photos could have worked better
because the subjects are more focused on their routine than the photo being

Meghan Elliot: I also liked your photos. The game photos are cool and the colors are
really vivid. The one where all of the players are running to the sideline is really
cool because their bodies and shadows create good vectors. The idea of
similarity and continuity allowed my mind group them as one because of the way
they are all moving together in the same direction.

I also like your feature photo titled “going to class” because I think you used leading lines really
well here.

I think you did a good job of cropping and made use of angles for the “shooting pool”
photo. The close ups show the intensity of the subject.

In my opinion, you could have gotten closer to the subjects of the photos of people
on campus, because they are pretty far away and it is hard to determine who the
subject is and what you are trying show.

I also think that your sports action shots could have had more movement, using something
other than pool for the sport.

It seems that for most of your on campus shots, you just snapped pictures of people to
take pictures. There was no clear story in the photos, other than the subjects were walking. It would have been more interesting to capture certain situations with more of a story to them.

For example, a romantic picnic, a guy playing with his kids or dogs, or even someone taking a nap on Prexy’s Pasture.

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