Writing A Tutorial Tech Report

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This is the part of the assignment where I tell you which software packages I have used to create the finish product and also which Hardware I used in the process too.

I started off with a pen and paper which is about as low tech as you can get really, just jotting a few ideas down about what I was going to create my tutorial about and also in what format I was going to create it.

The hardware that I used was a combination of 2 Computers. I started off by using the college’s iMac and then finished it off by using my Macbook at home. Other hardware I used in this project was one of the College’s Epson Perfection V30 Scanners to scan in my images for each step of the tutorial.

After going through a couple of Ideas I opened Adobe Photoshop CS5 and started to work on a layout for the tutorial, I already had my page border with all my information on it and the titles at the top and the bottom of the page so it was time to divide the rest of the page up into enough spaces to work with.

Below is a screen shot of what the page looked like after I had finished dividing it up with the grid lines on Photoshop. I then went onto writing my step onto the tutorial of which I had already drafted up on Paper.

Below is a screenshot of Photoshop when I had finished putting all the text into the tutorial. It was then time to insert the images that I had drawn and scanned into the iMac. I drew my own images because I couldn’t find ones that I wanted on the internet, but as you can tell from the finished product, my drawing sucks.

As you can see from the picture below, after I inserted the pictures into the tutorial, I selected them all, right clicked and merges the eight layers together because I had them all lined up how I wanted them and I didnt want to accidently knock them out of allignment.

This is just basic photoshop work and I am still learning but one of my main aims is to get better at using Photoshop over time and keep practicing with it.

Challenge 5: Filter Bubble

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After watching a couple of talks on the TED website which is http://www.ted.com and it stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design. We watched videos about various different topics by various different people but we watched a presentation by a bloke called Eli Pariser all about something called Filter Bubbles which got us as a class talking, which lead to this assignment.

What are Filter Bubbles, that’s what I would be asking myself if I had just read that last paragraph. Well, A Filter Bubble is what companies use to personally tailor searches to specific users. Google used to display the results of the most popular link first but it now displays results in accordance to the users browsing habits so most peoples search results are different. This is also how adverts that appear on websites such as Youtube.com are usually things that you would be interested in. Also social networking website Facebook.com uses a similar thing to google where it displays things in your news feed relevant to who you communicate with the most and various other criteria. Its is basically giving people what they want to see and hear and sometime not necessarily what then need to see or hear.

When asked about it, Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, said ‘A squirrel dying in front of your house may be more relevant to your interests right now than people dying in Africa’.

So now knowing all this that I didn’t know before. I am going to perform an experiment which will be to take 3 different phrases “Rubber Duck” “Gun Slinger” and “Bin Laden” and type them into Google on two different laptops belonging to two different people, my own, and my fathers. Due to the difference in interests and browsing habits of two different generations I am expecting the top three results to be different.

My Google Search Results

Dads Google Search Results

As you can see from the three different searches there are some Identical results but neither computer has given the exact same results which goes to prove that the Filter-bubble is a real thing and that we are indeed being monitored and our every click recorded, in-fact I wouldn’t be suppressed if somebody was recording every single keystroke that I am making, meaning that every spelling mistake I make or any sentence I delete or change is probably being stored somewhere on the internet, maybe nobody will ever sit and read it but it doesn’t mean that it will never or isn’t currently being recorded.

Challenge 4: Stone Camera

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When we were first given this task to complete it was to link two completely unrelated words to come up with the Idea of a product to advertise. So we were all given the same two words so that it was fair to everybody, these words were “Stone” and “Camera” which confused the hell out of quite a few people but there were some good ideas floating around the room. I however could not think of any ideas what so ever. So I left this project and worked on a couple of my others.

When I came back to this project and too a fresh approach to it I thought of an Idea almost straight away. I had been replaying an old video game from my childhood, Pokémon, lately and done another project using recycled childhood knowledge so I decided that I should stick to what I know and again decided to use Pokémon as my initial idea.

So I was looking through a bunch of rock Pokémon on the internet and tried to get a camera to go with it. Eventually I came out with a “Golem” holding a camera, which looked pretty cool in itself but it had no real function or purpose. So I decided to go back to the drawing board.

I then tried thinking of some other Ideas that I could use Golem for as I like the Idea of incorporating Pokemon into my work. But alas, no came to mind. However I did then go back to looking through different Rock Pokémon and I found another that was called Ryhorn which brought a brilliant Idea to mind. There is enough space on Ryhorn’s head to mount a camera so I could turn him into a Ryhorn Webcam!

I then went onto looking for just camera lenses, not the entire camera, just the lens. at first I founds a couple of ones that would have been good but they were pictured from the wrong perspective so wouldn’t have worked the way I wanted them to. After about 10 minutes of looking I finally found one that looked the way I wanted. Still the perspective wasn’t 100 percent perfect but it was the closest I was gonna get.

After I found and created the Idea for my product I then began work on my poster to advertise the product. It took me a while because to get the desired effect I had to trawl the internet for some new photoshop brushes because the standard ones wouldn’t create a texture that I was happy with.

After I created a background I was happy with then I started to build it up slowly, adding a couple more colours which are faded into the background before adding the detail to the poster.

It was time do add the detail so I then added my product, then the titles and information about my product and decided which fonts to use.

If I was going to do this project again I think that I would definitely try to take my own images so that everything was original and consistant. and all the perspectives were correct but I also wouldn’t want to combine the words Stone and Camera ever again either.

Challenge 3: Little People

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For this project we looked at an artist called Slinkachu and his “Little People” project which can be found at http://little-people.blogspot.com which started in 2006. The project is where the artist has placed little people in different scenarios and taken photographs of them from 3 different distances.

I then started to look on the internet for some more inspiration and ideas to do something similar and stumbled across something similar by a different artist. His work can be found here at http://www.lookclosernexttime.blogspot.com

I also found a similar project done by a Photographer called Stéfan who has created a series of photographs called “Stormtroopers Day Off” his work can be found at http://bit.ly/jXxH61

This project is basically where the photographer has taken a couple of Stormtroopers from the film “Starwars” and has placed them in various different situations that are all comical in their individual ways. 365 pictures for 365 days.

Im sure there are more projects like this out there on the internet but these are the three that I came across.

After looking at the work of the other artists it took me a while to decide what I was going to do so that I wasn’t copying what they had already done so once again I decided to fall back on childhood knowledge, much like I have done with some of my other projects where I have used Pokémon references. This time however I decided to use Lego mini-figures, as I spent alot of my childhood playing with Lego and building things.

So after deciding to use Lego Mini-figures, I went to dig them out of the box in the Cupboard. After sorting them all out I decided to use the Lego City Construction workers because I had more of them than I did of anything else.

Now I had one picture scenario, the others were a bit more tricky. One Idea that I had was hanging them on the washing line, but then I realised that it didnt have much to do with construction. So I decided to photograph them trying to lift a car wheel up and also trying to save the foreman from drowning in soil.

If I was to do this again then I think I would buy a better camera than the little point and shoot that I was using. Also I would put them into more scenarios and do a wider range of images of them rather than just three.

Challenge 2: Story Boards

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For this assignment, we had to choose a short clip or a scene from a film and draw a story board depicting it by drawing 20 story board squares and keep it a secret so that the rest of the class could guess which film it was that I had drawn when they were all finished.

When it came to choosing a film to draw i found it really difficult as I cant draw at all, if I’m completely honest, a five year old could probably draw better than me, however i started looking on the internet for some inspiration but just ended up watching viral videos for a couple of hours so I decided to take a look through my DVD collection to try and find something that would be easy to draw.

 The first one I picked out was Iron Man 2, I started to scan through the film to find a scene that would be easy to draw, found one and then tried to draw the DVD cover and failed horribly, it just ended up in a scribbled mess so I gave it up as a bad job because drawing people is one thing but drawing robots and actually making them look like a robot rather than just a weird looking person with a light coming out of his chest is really just out of my skill set.

This is the point where I moved onto working on something else for a couple of days and took a fresh approach to this assignment.

I then started looking at other films and I decided to go with one of my favorites, The A-Team, the remake with Liam Neeson and Bradley Cooper in it. I turned it on and just started sketching the first scene out, did it camera shot by camera shot, everytime the camera switched to a different angle I switched to a new piece of paper and started drawing the next one. It took me a while, but eventually my scribbles actually started to bare some resemblance to the scene that I was drawing.

It took a while and Im still not completely happy with how the drawings actually turned out but still its done to the best of my drawing ability.

If I was to do this project again, i think I would spend more time learning to draw which might take a while but atleast the final product would turn out looking much better rather than looking like somebody gave a small child a box of pencils and told them to go nuts drawing whatever they see coming up on the screen.

Having said that I dont think ive done too bad for somebody that has no artistic skilll with a pen or paintbrush.

Challenge 4: Common Photograph

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When we were given this assignment we were all given the same subject to make it fair and so that everybody was doing the same thing, which essentially made it into a competition as to who could come up with the most creative way of presenting them. The challenge we were given was to take a minimum of 20 photographs of our desk area and then present them in a creative way. But with a Desk area there are only so many pictures of the same thing you can take. Initially, I started off with taking photographs of my classroom desk area but then realised how bland and boring the photographs were because the classroom was clean and there wasn’t much to the images.

As you can see in the picture below, I have even tried adding elements to the image by taking my headphones off and putting them on the desk and also by putting my phone and my drink on there, but also this isnt a true representation of my classroom desk because I dont normally have my drink on the desk and I also always have my headphones on my head.

I then went back to the Students’ Union office in the college, of which at the time I was President, and I started to take pictures of that desk area because It is a complete mess which means that there are more elements to work with because there is more content on the images that I took and also it is a true reflection of what Is on my desk when Im working because its the environment I am used to working In.

After I photographed my desk in the Student’s Union office it was time to try and arrange then in a creative way so that they would have a great so I opened Photoshop and selected an Image to use as a base Image of which I could work with and use as my, for lack of a better term, Canvas.

One of the big challenges I found was not using the same picture twice, using twenty completely different Images. One of this things I did do that i found quite effective was to put an Image within an image. For example, put an image inside the computer screen on the original image. Also another thing was close ups of various areas of the desk.
After I sat and positioned all of my images where I wanted them so that I was happy with the way it was laid out I started playing with Filters as it looked really quite bland as just raw images. After spending a while playing with a few and decided I didn’t really like them, I finally settled on three that worked well together.

These filters can be found in the Adobe Photoshop CS5 Menu.
–> Filter –> Artistic –> Film Grain
–> Filter –> Stylize –> Diffuse
–> Filter –> Artisitic –> Watercolour

If I was to do this project again I think I would use more than 20 images to try to add extra elements to the image rather than overcrowd it.

Challenge 2: Top Internet Memes

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When we were first given this task I really struggled with ideas for creating my own meme, anything I thought of had already been done before. So I decided that I was going to create a poster with my favourites on it.

I then went onto narrowing down my favourites from all of the memes that are spread out across the internet, there are hundreds of them out there, many that are pictures, videos and phrases that have mostly erupted from the internet chat board 4chan.org on their “Random” page which is known to most as /b/ which in its self has founded new words like /b/ros and /b/tards.

Memes appear with a sort of snowball effect on the internet, somebody posts something and then somebody else reposts it then another person takes it, adds their own twist to it and then reposts it again which can sometimes add a new dimension to an existing meme or create a new one entirely. Some of the most reproduced memes are the images that have a background of two or three colours on them and an image in the middle, be it a frog, wolf, penguin or something else, with text above and below them. This is usually some kind of observation in everyday life, things that people can relate to or some kind of advice which is sometimes good and sometimes completely ridiculous. Oh and I should also mention that most of them are disgusting aswell.

When I first started creating this poster I had some trouble accessing some of the websites that contained pictures of my favourite internet memes because the college internet filter deemed them as Obscene and Tasteless. So what I ended up doing was making a list of my favourite memes and then narrowing them down through a list of which ones I could get access to. I eventually managed to narrow it down to only three. Courage Wolf, Foul Bachelor Frog and Socially Awkward Penguin. I first started off with an idea that I got half way through creating and then had another thought which looked better.

My new Idea was something that was Inspired by  something that I had seen when researching into Infographics (which is what Challenge 3 for this unit is about.) What I was aiming to do was sort of a character profile for each meme but the only way I could get it to look how I wanted it to was to download a brush set for Adobe Photoshop called “Rising Sun”. This then allowed me to create a background for each meme profile that looked similar to the meme itself. I used the Colour Picker Tool on Photoshop to get the correct colours from each meme for use  on the backgrounds.

If I was going to do this again I would probably make it bigger than an A4 sized poster and include more memes on it than just three as there is hundreds of memes out there on the internet. Either that or have a go at creating my own video based meme and see how fast I could get it to circulate the ether.

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