Thursday, October 31, 2013

Rescuing the Remix

RiP: A Remix manifesto offers a profoundly philosophical thesis on the creative process and its role in societal advancement. Surely culture builds on the past; it takes what is and constantly seeks to improve or enhance it. That’s progress. While technology constantly changes, the values that drive innovation seldom do the same. Too often that value is profit, and it seems a crime that record companies, which have utilized technology to make the music business so lucrative for themselves, now seek to limit the way the common man (or woman) may utilize that same technology.

The Muddy Waters example seemed to effectively demonstrate the way art builds on itself; whether it be a single song note, a word or just the way someone moves their brush, inspiration takes what it knows to create something new and different. Similarly, the film noted how nearly much, if not all, of Disney’s early work was simply an animated and modernized adaptation of some other story, without which Disney could not have enjoyed his monumental success. There is clear irony in the way the Disney Corporation fights so vigorously to keep others from using its characters, as Disney devours other franchises like Marvel and Star Wars. It is only that irony which will continue to compound on itself.

Lawrence Lessig’s Creative Common’s movement seems to be a step that should be taken to restore the freedom to be inspired and to channel that inspiration, for at the heart of remixing is inspiration, and if the freedom to channel inspiration is infringed upon, then record companies would have far fewer artists to leech from in the first place. While the illegal distribution of music is unfavorable to the profit-driven corporations that associate with artists, one can’t help but wonder why publishing companies and those who represent them are so adamantly against the free exposure that comes with a shared remix. Perhaps these corporations are embroiled in a fight to remain relevant in a ring where anyone can use modern technology to present themselves and their music to the world from the comfort of their own home. But in this fight it’s only a matter of time before record companies go the way of the vinyl record, and I sincerely doubt they’ll ever resurface as vintage collectibles.

by Nina J. Easton of the LA Times    
Talk about irony

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

And We're Off...

A link to the site where I'll be working on my 4-week independent study project "Understanding High Functioning Autistic Teens" In the end I hope this will be video compilation of what my son's life is like, the pros and cons of his diagnosis, and facts about HFA teens.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Welcome To My Life - as an autistic teenager

I got it.... a digital media presentation of what it's like to be a high-functioning autistic teenager, like my amazing, wonderful, delightful, son!



Creativity, Inspiration & Procrastination

Great ideas do typically just pop into my head and once I have an idea, I tend to follow a similar process as James Webb Young's principals for developing an idea (A Technique for Producing Ideas).  However my process happens pretty quick as I am like a dog with a bone and/or because I am a horrible procrastinator.  For whatever reason, once I have the idea or the "it" I work at 100mph doing my research, thinking, discussing, and working on "it" until it develops into what I want/need (or it will fizzles out and dies).  That being said, it's the initial idea that I often struggle with and the longer it takes me to figure that out, the more stressed I get, the less creative I get and typically just want to give up.  (Thus the reason I'm getting my BFA at 40 and not 24 because giving up used involve dropping a class and vowing to take it the next semester and year - procrastinating - until it's too late).

Back to Young... I like the idea of Young's principals, but he doesn't address how to get that original thought.  The first step in his process is investigation, but investigation of what?  In advertising, his field of expertise, the "it" was given to him by a client.  Toothpaste, coat, restaurant, book, jewelry, etc. were his "it" and once he had that he could apply his principals for developing a good idea or pitch or commercial or print ad, or whatever it was he needed to do with the "it".  However, what would he have done if the "it" wasn't given to him.  If he were simply instructed to, "create a great advertisement" and that was it.  I'm sure his first question would be "about what?" 

That's where at.  I'm struggling with this first independent study assignment because I don't know stuck at the starting block.  I'm thrilled to have a plan of action for developing my idea and turning it into a finished project.  I'm excited to try Young's principals too, but I can't seem to find the gun to start the race.  Practical just doesn't apply to me.  I'm not an artist (by the true definition of the word).  I like the idea of being an artist, but when I try something artsy, I just get frustrated at how imperfect it is, so I try to avoid putting myself in that situation.  That leaves social, but what?  Hmmm... gotta keep thinking on this.  I've done some research and have a few ideas, but I'm just not really excited about any of them.  Next step will involve calling on my friends.  Brainstorming is almost always a good solution when I'm stuck.
what it should be about.  I don't know what my "it" is going to be and so feel

Regardless of my "stuck-ed-ness", I really enjoyed Young's book.  Articulating a creative process in such a succinct and understandable way, is not an easy thing to do.  Being a process person myself, I really liked reading about a process to be creative, a skill I struggle with.  Young's process is very intellectual and I'm excited to apply it to my project.

So, I'm behind because I can't tell you what my project is going to be yet, but as true procrastinator, now that I'm behind, I'm sure brilliance will strike at any minute.