Friday, June 10, 2011

Talking to Strangers and Making a Video on The Oval, OSU, June 9, 2011

My goal was to talk with strangers and ask them, one by one, a question. I did not intend to be intrusive, journalist-types never do, do they? Do they just believe that they have permission to ask anyone just about anything in the name of news?

But it was intrusive, a fact I felt more acutely as the hour went by while I carried out my mission. Several perfect strangers kindly consented to take time to talk with me. I explained that I was taking a workshop at the Wexner Center for the Arts on creating a blog, and my assignment was to ask a question: What is the worst advice you have ever received? Three of those who agreed to answer the question and allow me to videotape their answer became the subjects of my short video: "Asking Questions: Considering Worst Advice."

Untitled from Darlyn Campbell on Vimeo.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

First day's post

Attending Teacher Tech Camp at the Wexner Center for the Arts on "Building a Media Rich Blog." Visited the new Ohio Union on OSU's campus during the lunch break from today's workshop. It is a mecca for people on campus who really enjoy choosing among lots of options, at least about what to eat. There are a half dozen choices of cuisines, each at a different station, with no clear traffic pattern to navigate. If you are new to this food court, you can delay choosing and just walk around the space, reading menus and asking questions. I did finally decide on one, the Deli Station's Garden Wrap. My order was made by hand with care, and to my specifications, by a friendly, conscientious student worker. When it came to getting a fork, I had my second challenge: figuring out how to release the fork from the Fork Machine---push the button, No, that sign means pull the lever. This is like what happens when I driving up  to the freeway entrance. The sign seems to say ENTER HERE, but it really means, enter a little farther up, HERE, NOW, TURN HERE, Sillyhead!

I am thinking about Ohio Union's food court and unfamiliar technology. You have visited food courts; they are a lot alike, you understand the basic principles but you are not quite certain where to start, and you still want to ask some questions before you order; if you spend too much wandering around, reading menus and asking questions, you are gonna use up your lunch hour before you get to eat. Okay, technology: I am working on an Apple laptop today instead of the familiar pc, which means I am navigating without a mouse. When Corey, the workshop co-leader, asks if anyone wants a wireless mouse, I am tempted but say that is a bit like training wheels on my childhood bike, isn't it? I cave quickly but think I'll just have it here in case I need it.

There are so many questions I want to ask but, like lunch, I will lose too much time if I do much of that. Just dive in and try something. So this is what I hope to achieve: find out how comfortable I can be using a Mac so that I can feel good about making a major purchase sometime soon (yes, I am one of the few human beings in the 21st century without a computer, so I am told); start a blog on topics of genuine interest AND find out how to "make it work," as Project Runway's guru Tim Gunn suggests as the go-to approach for facing every challenge.

I am passionate about finding ways to connect the arts and other subjects and to helping students explore such possibilities, and I think technology is potentially a great tool and medium for art-making, but don't know how to use it well enough---yet---to achieve those goals. I have the acute awareness of barriers I have not yet learned to overcome. In my well-loved medium of photography, much of my old-school knowledge and skills are dated if not utterly obsolete because that field is now digitally driven, except for vintage processes a few artists are perpetuating in their laboratories. So while my connection to photography drives me to want to learn technology tools, my preference for low tech leads me to contemplate the possibilities of printmaking, where there is no subscriber fee or satellite hookup required to engage in one's art. Oh, alright, so no excuses....hold the rant and let's get started.

Questions: Keep as a draft or click Publish Post? Does the Ohio Union link work? How do I add an image? Should it be my image or a borrowed image from Flickrs or some other public images site? How can I change my blog's name from Artchef-lyn to Artchef-darlyn ??