Anatomy: Interim Online Review 05/10/2010Hey Dmitrij,Let me begin with a quote:“The first week isn't done yet but i've felt so much so far. I've enjoyed and i've disliked.But i'm starting to see this course i bit differently. We're not JUST learnin' how to do somethin' and how to do it better. We're learnin' proffesionalism. The kind of attitude and respect we should have towards our projects even if it is just a drawing.”You wrote this – and you’re absolutely right; you are here to learn more than simply the technical know-how. You’re having a total experience, and yes, a big part of that is about establishing a professional identity – an appropriate way to conduct yourself in particular situations. This is the reason – the only reason – why I have, at times, asked you to ‘calm it down’ – when watching films in a group environment, for instance. Don’t misunderstand me, Dmitrij; I love your humour, your passion and your receptivity; you’re a big, bold part of this creative community and it’s great having you here – BUT, I do need you to nurture your professionalism. The same is true of your blog; remember, your blog is public-facing; it can be viewed by anyone and first impressions are made quickly; soon, your blog will become part of the way in which you promote yourself to the world – to employers. It needs to be image-rich and well-presented; it needs to express your creative identity while also communicating clearly to everyone else. You need to think about the impression you and your work is making. Generally, I’d like to see you take more time over presenting your drawings; they are very yellow-looking, but nothing that a quick trip into Photoshop wouldn’t fix; yes, that means you’ve got to take a little more time, but why wouldn’t you want to present your own work in the best possible light?For a great example of what a good creative blog can look like – both in terms of general presentation, formatting and content (i.e. lots!), take a look at Leo Tsang’s unit 1 blog. Leo is a second year now, and always scored very highly in terms of his creative development; the reason for this should be clear. Copy-paste this link and browse backwards through the older posts; the brief was different then, but this is what a degree level creative development blog can – and should – look like:http://ltsang.blogspot.com/2009/10/final-portrait.htmlNotice how this student has a standard use of colour, font and image size; notice too, how he has customized his blog template, so that the ‘brand’ is maintained throughout. It’s clean, attractive, graphically-designed and professional.
There’s not a huge amount posted to show me how you’re considering your approach to your self-portrait; consider developing a series of transformations in which you start with your actual face and actual body and, over the course of a number of drawings, explore the ‘realistic’ consequences of your gene-splice. Remember – this is not a creature or monster design project – not really – it is a self-portrait project, so I want to see something of you remain in the image. I want students to try and work from the ‘inside out’ – not to clothe themselves in the attributes of their animal. For some good examples, see this week’s PWTM athttp://ucarochester-cgartsandanimation.blogspot.com/2010/10/post-with-most-03102010.htmlNo essay question posted? I want to know what you’re planning, so post your subject area and proposed investigation asap (as soon as possible!)A general reminder that, alongside everything else you need to have ready for crit day, you also need to submit an offline archive of your creative development blog. There is a way of exporting your blog as PDF via Blogger – which would be ideal for this purpose. Incase you missed the original post, Alan gives details here:http://ucarochester-cgartsandanimation.blogspot.com/2010/09/how-to-turn-your-blog-into-pdf-document.htmlAnd finally – now is the time to return to the brief; time and again, students fail to submit what they’ve been asked to produce – and how; usually because they haven’t looked properly at the brief, or haven’t done so since week one. Trust me on this; just take a few minutes with a highlighter pen to identify what is required, when, and how. Remember – non-submissions are dumb!
Hey Dmitrij,Check your spam... I've posted a section of this feedback a number of times here, but it keeps vanishing... sometimes this is because it is detected as Spam... I'll try and post it again...
Regarding your reviews; your insights and observations are good – and, in one way, I enjoy their humour and irreverent tone – BUT, again, it is an issue of context. The purpose of these reviews is to prepare you for the written assignments to come – and, ultimately, for the 8,000 word dissertation you’ll complete in your final year. You have to develop a writing style that is appropriately FORMAL when you’re being asked to produce academic writing; if you don’t, it’s like showing up to a funeral in a pair of orange Speedos! There’s nothing ‘wrong’ about orange swimwear, but wearing them at a funeral is inappropriate. So, finally, I am not censoring or challenging your character, I am simply suggesting that you have to get better at adapting to CONTEXT.
More specifically, in terms of style, use your quotes in a more integrated way; for example; in your Cat People review, you include your reviews only at the end – as if they’re somehow separate from your own observations, when you need to use reviews to support or contradict your views. For example, you have this great quote: "Female sexuality is a rich source of a certain kind of horror - the kind of horror that plays upon the anxieties that prudish bourgeois men have about their wives' sex lives." Firstly, weave your sources into your argument; i.e., “… as Leo Goldsmith observes ‘Female sexuality is a rich source of a certain kind of horror…” What you should do next is reflect yourself on the content of the quote; Goldsmith talks about a ‘certain kind of horror’ – but what does he mean? You don’t show your understanding of this idea – and you need to. When using quotes to support and idea, you need to generate a ‘conversation’ between the source (it’s ideas etc.) and you. It is not enough to simply drop them in without introduction, analysis or somekind of conclusion. It’s style, it’s technique, and it’s the nature of a particular kind of writing (Academic/critical/research-based).
Hi Dmitrij, Can I also add something, regarding the style of your writing...it might be a good idea to start getting in the habit of not dropping the 'g' at the end of words, for example, gettin', bein',sayin'...this makes your tone sound very casual. Essays need to sound academic! :)