Project Project Blog-Round 1

At first, the final project for Writing with New Media seemed like this big pile of confusion. I completely misunderstood the entire project, I was lost in translation.¬†I started to toy with a few ideas and then I went off the wrong path and landed into a ball of confusion and frustration. My initial project proposal was surrounded on the idea of visual rhetoric and culture and¬†new technologies has led to the creation of¬†various online communities which play a role in shaping visual rhetoric and culture. I wanted to examine how many individuals used photos as a way to use visual rhetoric/ visual storytelling to quantify themselves. I wanted to explore if photos needed content and if different cultures play a role in how we interpret images. Specifically, I wanted to probe the question “Has our cultural beliefs affected the way we interpret a image and why does it affect the way the see a image? I believe that many of these images has shaped the way we see the world and it has been reinforced by¬†new media and leads to misinterpretation. My contention was that phycology, environmental factors, traumatic events, fear, and age are major factors that play a role in how our psyche interprets an image. ¬†Although this seemed like a phenomenal topic to explore, it was not what the project asked for. What I was imaging was a complex psychology topic which would require world class¬†psychologist and a massive research center. Again that was not the project. I started to get frustrated and shut down.

Then take 2. For the second revision I tried to revise the project using the same idea– not a good idea. In revision number two, I approached the question “Can Photojournalism Changes Our Biases?” This was just like the first proposal, it was more of a proposed theory, there was no practical deliverables for the project. This one was even more emotional based because it would require a psychoanalysis of what happens to me when I review a image and if it changes my biases. Again this was not the assignment.¬† Slowly but surely, I realized that I wanted my project to center around the ideas of photojournalism and storytelling. Once I discovered that these ideas could potentially blossom into something unique, I ran with it.¬†The next stop of the project was to find sources that supported my idea that I was still nurturing. The annotated bibliography gave me a chance to dig deeper into research that would support my ideas. Within my research that I composed because of the annotated bibliography, it was made clear to me that I wanted to explore how individuals¬†are able to successfully share their stories via new social media platforms and have a voice for the first time. This project is meaningful to me because by learning what makes a story successful will contribute to my memoir. I intend to publish a memoir in my early 40s, and if I can learn the ins and outs now– it will be very successful.

Now that I have gathered together my¬†proposal, I am waiting for it to be approved and then I can get moving. Looking forward I want to begin my work on the week of the 15th because I am very much behind. I need to begin researching the photo blog Humans of New York and clearly define its mission statement. I will analyze a image that successfully captures the ideal storytelling in a photo from the blog then analyze it deeper by using the visual literacies guideline. Also, I’d like to begin writing¬†parts of my reflection piece.

Goal checking- to successfully stick to the timeline that I’ve carved out for myself.

What Makes A Story Successful in Photojournalism? *Revision*

Project Proposal

Topic: What Makes a Story Successful in Photojournalism?

By exploring photojournalism and visual storytelling, these two disciplines can potentially aid in how individuals share their stories in various new media platforms, which can offer insight in what makes a successful story. I intend to introduce three types of images from the blog Humans of New York and Storycorps that successfully captures the narrative of photojournalism and how it presents an opportunity to give individuals a voice. 

For this project, I will examine the blog Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton, a blog that shares stories while offering a new light on photojournalism and cultivating a new type of visual experience and StoryCorps, a nonprofit that provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives. I will view 3 photos from Humans of New York and 3 videos from StoryCorps that I find visually captivating and content that sheds light on the individual in an effort to chart what makes a successful story.

In this project, I will explain the following:

  1. How can you successfully tell your story?
  2. How does reading or watching a story transforms an individual?

Other elements to explore:

  1. Create a image similar to Humans of New York with a person and a quote about their life and post on Instagram and Twitter.
  2. Compare my attempt to try to create a image similar to Humans of New York with a success image from Human of New York, the image will be tracked on Instagram and Twitter via those networks analytics.
  3. A blog post on my personal blog to share the image and write a reflection piece.




Photojournalism-is a particular form of journalism (the collecting, editing, and presenting of news material for publication or broadcast) that employs images in order to tell a news story.

Storytelling-is the conveying of events in words, sound and/or images, often by improvisation or embellishment

Visual storytelling-

Success-the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.

Image- a representation of the external form of a person or thing in art.



WordPress Blog, Instagram, Twitter, Prezi

Topics and Projected Timeline:

Week of the 15th 

Explain what is photojournalism and visual storytelling.

A.) History of photojournalism and visual storytelling, the new technologies within the world of new media and the platforms.

B.) Write out the history and mission of Humans of New York.

C.) Explain its best practices and strategies that are successful

D.) Select three images from Humans of New York

  • Examine the photos, critique the photos using the visual literacies guidelines
  • Discuss the process of this via online journal
  • How did the image and content successfully tell the story

Week of the 22nd

A.) History of photojournalism and visual storytelling, the new technologies within the world of new media and the platforms.

B.) Write out the history and mission of Storycorps.

C.) Explain its best practices and strategies that are successful

D.) Select three images from Storycorps

  • Examine the photos, critique the photos using the visual literacies guidelines
  • Discuss the process of this via online journal
  • How did the image and content successfully tell the story

Week of the 29th

A.) Create a comparative analysis of Humans of New York and Storycorps

B.) Pros and Cons

C.) Prospect

  • Find someone to try and successfully create a photo similar to Humans of New York and shared to Instagram and Twitter
  • The image will be tracked daily on Instagram, I will also use hashtags to help circulate the image on Instagram and on Twitter.
  • Perhaps embed this image and write a blog post on OpenLab

Week of the 6th

A.)Explain why it is important to create  successful story in photojournalism

B.) Write a reflection on the process of creating the image, was it successful or not?

  • What would I do different?
  • What other platforms should I have used?
  • How should I promote the image?
  • Reviews on the image from classmates
  • Was it hard to circulate the image?



  1. Analysis of Humans of New York and three images
  2. Analysis of Humans of Storycorps and three images
  3. A image created by me that mirrors Human of New York, this will be on Instagram on my personal account because I have a decent number of followers
  4. A comparative analysis between the two sites.
  5. A reflection of my success or failure with creating an images
  6. A recommended guideline TBD
  7. The end-result will be presented in the form of short short film/video of some sort which will be posted to Jodieann Stephenson’s e-portfolio site.




Throughout the semester we have covered a wide range of topics but in all of them we always seemed to return the topic of availability. We question time and time again that in this day in age is it possible to be unavailable? And what does it actually mean to be unavailable in a world where not being able to reach someone is a sign of tardiness and carelessness.

When thinking of a possible project idea I focused on three main topics that interests me:

  1. Availability
  2. Attention structures
  3. Participation

After focusing in on these three topics I came to realize that they each play a part in tackling the question of, “Do we have the ability to ever become completely unavailable? ” First of all, availability is by far one of the biggest affordances and constraints of the internet.¬†Social media has allowed us to constantly be in touch. We can tag, track, and see when we’ve read each other’s messages. All of these affordances have in a way lead us to always be online even when we aren’t. Being available online means you are expected to participate in conversation both personal and global. As an individual of an online community you have the responsibility to share, comment and create and if you do not you are therefore doing that community a disservice. Your participation is always needed and wanted on both your and your audiences’ end. This want and need to participate ultimately allows us to choose whether we are or are not available. ¬†It also means that you are aware of what is going on around you and you are in a way forced to take part or else you are “creeping”. ¬†Being available has also had an impact in the way we divide our attention. What we focus on and how we focus on these things ultimately effects our participation and our availability. These three concepts all interact and interfere with our ability to actually disconnect and become unavailable in a world that demands availability.

For this project I propose an experiment in which I¬†will¬†purposely disconnect myself from all social media sites that I participate in for two weeks. In those two weeks I will vlog, blog, and capture photographs daily about how I am dealing with not being available online. In tracking this I want to highlight the shift in myself and the transition from an avid online user to someone who has become “unavailable” which will be captured daily via video interviews. Secondly, by conducting research that almost entirely embarks on the premise of availability and the affordances and constraints it entails I will try to also highlight the psychological effects this disconnect has upon an individual such as anxiety, worry, detachment etc. ¬†I hope to ¬†to demonstrate that availability has changed our wants,needs, and interpretations of people, persons, and things. I also hope to answer the question of if we are truly able to become unavailable or not.

Possible questions:

  1. How are you feeling today without your online presence?
  2. Have you noticed a change in yourself?
  3. How has your relationship with your smart device changed?
  4. What will you or have you done to replace the time you spent being available online?
  5. What other activities have you been participating in?
  6. How has your attention shifted? Has it shifted?

Research Materials (thus far):

Cohen & Kenny

Jones & Hanfer