The Mission of Semester 106

a digital storytelling adventure

Tag: VisualAssignments

What’s in a Shadow?

Shadow of a Doubt


Shadows have a particular peculiarity to them. Agent Fawn for instance always thought it frustrating how much shadows disproportionated the actuality of the real object. For instance her shadow in particular was always much taller than she thought it ought to be. Given her height, it always made her feel much to tall when looking at her shadow. Like Peter Pan’s shadow she felt her own had too much of its own personality for her liking. Shadows she surmised were supposed to be more like the person even with the way the light hit at any given angle it should at least bear more relation to the actual subject. If she had had a mind for folly she would have considered telling off shadows as a whole for their misrepresentation. However she knew that was utter nonsense and as such had to be resigned with the fact that her shadow and everyone else’s for that matter could never properly depict their owner. Instead they would always be far too long and perhaps not the right size. Still she thought to herself perhaps the only positive of a long shadow is its ability to give away its own before they appear around the corner, giving her just enough time to knew who was near.

Love at the cat

Soldier's goodbye & Bobbie the cat, Sydney, ca. 1939-ca. 1945 / by Sam Hood

The couple stood on their front porch step to say goodbye. A normal couple thing to do for sure. It starts with standing at each others doorsteps for dates after dates, until finally they are standing at their own front doorstep for their own home.  Just as Alice and Jack were doing right now. Standing on the front wooden porch of their own home. However until most goodbyes this one was more emotional. It was not a goodbye to go to the store or on a trip, but a send off to battle. Jack dressed to leave for country and Alice to see her solider out the door. An occasion where both lean in together to say goodbye with as much heart as they are able. Also Bobby their precious cat was there. Seated between the pair unknowingly watching the emotional moment between the couple. Incapable of realizing the importance of the moment he was in. However Bobby, like most cats, was a good distraction and sometimes a good distraction is needed  in moments of uncertainty and strong concern. As Bobby stared up at the couple lovingly looking at one another they broke their glance to appreciate their silly cat. Making a moment of lightheartedness into the moment of sadness.


One Shot Assignment

Present Past?

While flipping through the visual assignments I came across the Architecture/Landscape Then and Now assignment. I though it sounded pretty cool then I saw no one had ever really done it, so I decided I needed to fix that because the assignment is a cool one.

At first I thought about going a little too literally how the assignment is proposed and doing a then and now of UMW like in the example but I decided that I needed to branch it out. So I went to Flickr Commons and stuck in the word buildings and started pursuing the options. I went into it not having a particular building in mind but wanting to find something very cool architecture. I found this image of a building that is a part of  Trinity College in Dublin. I thought it was a cool angle and a nice building so why not try it out.

Trinity College Dublin, late 19th century

Now originally the assignment said to put an old building on top of a new one to show change over time. I decided to do it backwards. Put the modern photograph into the older one cause I liked the city movement and people in this photo and felt it could create a good contrast.  I searched around and found a photo from the present of the front facade of the college. Or I should say I thought I found it. The photo was from a slightly different angle so I had to edit it to align better with the angle of the older photo. However the more I started to align the two photos the more confused I got because I had an extra pillar in the new photo that did not have a matching counterpart on the old one. After seriously looking at the two I realized the problem my new picture was of a totally different building. It was a building that belong to Trinity College but not the same one as in my original photograph. So I had to start all over but hey here is what my wrong version looked liked.


its the wrong building

So whoops there then I finally found the actual right front of it and I was moving ahead again. Again I brought the new image into photoshop and started playing around with setting up the shot to lay perfectly or as perfect as I could get it into the frame.

So this was my final product. It took a lot of editing and distorting I got it close to what I thought could work properly. I liked it but I felt like because it was just the building it was not as striking as I wanted. So…



I decided to start all over again. (Not sure why I tortured myself so much, probably trying to be a perfectionist.) This picture offered more of a color difference however it was harder to get the perspective just right. Basically this project taught me to consider perspective more critically when making choices, since trying to replicate it was rather difficult.


The Desk of Agent Fawn

I took on the One Shot assignment that is worth 3 stars. I decided to use this assignment along with my character. The idea of the one shot was to take one image and split it into a comic style to convey something. I decided to tweak that a little, when I was playing around with the photos I was not getting a quality that I liked so I actually took several images of the same subject to get a better quality on particular objects on the desk.

I spent awhile trying to decide how to set up the desk and how to create a desk that reflected the personality of my character Agent Fawn. I imaged her desk being very austere however I decided to clutter it up a bit more to point to items that gave more depth to who she is as a character. Among those items were a notepad with letter on it, a redacted set of files, and a broken key. Those were some of the elements I purposefully set up in the scene along with other office supplies each carefully chosen for the desk.

Here is what my first picture looked like when I originally set the desk up.

desk pre project

I then brought that picture and several other zoom in shots into Photoshop and worked played around with organizing the photos and creating a narrative around the images. Originally I started with a first shot of the desk and progressed through different zoom ins until I go to a final shot of the same desk. However as I worked with it I found the narrative really seemed to be lacking and not strongly coherent. So I scrapped that idea and instead tried to look at the images as a whole and how they could work together better. After I had gotten a organization I was happier with I messed around with color balance layers and the saturation of the overall image to try and give it a more muted effect than the bright original photograph had. I felt a more somber feeling better suited my agent’s personality.

Here is my final completed version.



Is Helvetica a Good Font?

For another assignment this week I decided to take on the bluntly named Pick a Bad Photo, Apply a Vintage Effect and Write Something in Helvetica. The directions for the assignment was essentially the title chose a random photo give it an effect and add some Helvetica text. (Personally I thought it interesting that Helvetica was the most defined aspect of the project.)

First I went through my photos on my computer and tried to come up with the most random photo I could find. I found this odd photo of an empty room I had taken and decided to use it. Here was the original photo.

empty room

From the original photo I put it into Photoshop and first and added a filter layer with a sepia tone. After that I still was not feeling the effect it was darker in color but nothing that interesting so I played around with the image. I played around with different light elements at random till I got a combination I thought gave the picture more visual interest. At that point I had to add the Helvetica font. I tried to come up with the most cliche sort of phrase to stick on there. I contemplated for a bit then made the font larger and finished the image. Here is my exciting conclusion to the assignment.