This was quite surprising. I noticed a few unexpected things after listening to this radio episode. First of all, I really like the idea of telling a few stories. At first 58 minutes seemed like a really long time, but it was spread out nicely across the different stories. Of course, some I liked and some I didn’t. I think that if I were listening to this in my car, I would have just turned it off after the second story (which was also my favorite). It was for class so I listened till the end. I noticed that what they did very often is underline the stories with music. I know that any ambient must be relevant to the story somehow but here I felt that they overdid it a few times. An example for this would be the part in the second story, where he is talking about the whole 30 days being like a race. As he said the word “race”, this weird fast paced music started playing, which was kind of comical but I felt like it did not belong into that part of the story, because all it did is distract me. In other parts I really felt that the ambient sounds were useful and underlined the track well.
With these short stories, I really discovered two important things. First of all, sometimes its better to just hear voices and not see the people speaking. I think that their appearance was completely irrelevant and would only distract me. The other thing I discovered is that when listening to a story, it is not a good idea to do anything else. Each word brings the story forward, and so when multitasking, obviously sometimes you miss a few sentences and therefore miss important parts of the story. I am so used to tuning out background music (which I basically play whenever possible- even while studying), that I automatically without even wanting it tuned out what they were saying when I wasn’t focused enough.
So all in all I think that my expectations for this audio sections have risen. As long as I find a way to sit down and focus on something I cannot see, only hear, I think I will enjoy myself and listen to radio without any troubles! I can see that my perception of radio was not completely right, and that there must be some fundamental constraint which prevents our generation to listen to it, because as mentioned earlier, there are things that only radio can provide, which TV or books cannot.
It is incredible how fast time passes. My first phase of midterms is over. The video section is….over. I feel like soon I’ll be going home already, which is definitely nice but also somehow scary. This week was wrap up week. I finished my final video projects, which were super fun to do and I feel like I have learned a lot and I am proud that I survived a couple of days of editing.
This week consisted of my first two audio creates, my last two video projects and a response to Susan Douglas.
1st audio create
2nd audio create
2nd video project
3rd (and final) video project!!!
Response to “Listening In” by Susan Douglas
In her book titled “Listening In“, Susan Douglas mentions something that made me stop and re-read the sentence once more just to be sure that I understood it correctly and really have reason to disagree. And I do. She mentions the special kind of “vibe” that the radio creates, for example when you listen to it in the car on a long way home. She describes how radio can take you out of yourself, and yet “paradoxically hurl you into your innermost thoughts”. Now don’t get me wrong, I perfectly agree with this. The thing I really could not understand is the reason why she adds; “Television, by contrast, just doesn’t do this”. So basically what she is saying is that TV cannot take you out of yourself and yet hurl you into your innermost thoughts!?! If that is the case, then I completely have to disagree.
The way I see the comparison between radio, TV, and I think books should be added as well, is the following. All three usually try to convey a story. The original and in some ways simplest (and in other ways the most complex) is reading a book. The voices that you hear in your head are voices that you yourself create. Basically, the whole experience of reading is created by you (of course being led by the author). Now, after listening to a recording in class, that was done in a way to tell a story (about a girl from a difficult background that made it as a boxer), I realized something about radio. It tries to tell a story, just like a book, but it constricts you in a way. In a book, the voices you hear are made up completely by your fantasy. In the radio, a person had been recorded and that is the voice that you are stuck with. Now, while listening to the story of the boxer in class, I realized that even though the story was very touching and quite good, I could hear through the people’s voices that it is not completely real. There was a part in the recording, when the girl was saying inspirational stuff about boxing and it literally felt like a NIKE commercial to me. It didn’t sound like something that girl would really say if she was telling me the story in person and not trying to put on an act. This ties in with TV. Basically TV is just like radio, except that it constricts you even more in a way, by adding the visual aspect of everything. Now the characters that you could imagine yourself are before your eyes and you either like them or not. But there is another difference. A movie beats radio in telling a story, because sometimes an image of a person’s face (if it is a good actor) can convey more emotion than thousands of words.
I could go on and on about this, but these are basically the reasons why I think, that nowadays radio is the LEAST popular of the three storytelling-options. This is also why I disagree with Susan Douglas on the previously mentioned aspect of the comparison. I hope that throughout our audio section, since it seems to be based on radio a lot, I will find something that only radio can give you. Something that would make me want to start listening to radio again to hear a story, and not rather open a book or see a movie.
This is a recording of my friend Lucian laughing at me 😀
I had a beef steak today…so this is a recording of a cow mooing!
Video Project 3…I am finished. And this one was the most fun for sure. The original idea was that I would make a video in a way so that you could follow a normal umich student (if there is such a thing) on their normal day. In the end I used footage from several days and spliced it together. It’s basically a walkthrough of some of the places I walk around often and you get to see some of the people I’m with often….This video is also interesting for me, because it combines what I learned in the first two projects….The toughest part of this video was just the technical process, as always. There was a HUUUGE amount of footage, that I had to go through and pick and choose. Also the cutting itself was a pain, trying to get the music to fit at least a bit with what is going on on screen was a big challenge. I went through a number of songs before I found what I was looking for. All in all I loved this process and I loved the video section and I feel like I learned the maximum that was possible in this amount of time with midterms and everything going on.
I am looking forward to the audio section!
Here is a screenshot of the editing process:
I even had to video chat with a friend because I was getting so frustrated 😀 and he helped me with choosing a song!