HW for Week 5 (3/4)

–Write and post responses to the in-class writing prompts from today (below).  Due Sunday 5p.
–Post revisions of Blog Response 2 and Blog Response 3 by Sunday 5p.  Email me if you are behind or have an “F” for Blog Response 1 (for Week 2).  If you haven’t written a blog post yet, I want you to write two drafts of each post.  For your first draft, simply write a response to the prompt.  For your second draft, I want you to read through the feedback given to other writers in the class and then apply that feedback to your own first draft, revising it accordingly.
–Read: Namwali Serpell’s “Triptych: Texas Pool Party.”
MEDIA PROMPTS:
I) Describing the “appearance” of a media object.  Cue up your current favorite song, video, meme, etc. and re-watch/re-listen to it.  Another option, following Tortorici (5-6), re-read posts you made on a social media platform awhile ago.  Now think: if you were unable to play or show your chosen piece of media to a stranger, what words would you use to get them to experience it in their imagination?  Jot down some of those words.  Things to consider mentioning:
–the sensory/affective details of the media object: what does it look, sound, feel like? How is it designed?  How do you interact with it? What does it make you feel/think?
–analogies, similes, etc that compare the details of this media to other things that your stranger might be familiar with: e.g., the bass drop on the Kanye track sounds like thunder, the images in my IG home page look like bathroom tiles…  
   Try to come up with 2-3 sensory details and 2-3 comparisons.  You might start off by making lists, but try eventually to put these descriptions and comparisons into sentences.
 
III. Showing a transformation in your experience of a media object. 
Below is the format for a quick exercise for getting yourself to think of how to show the way your perspective on a piece of media changed over time (and as you experienced that media object multiple times).  It is quick, but the ideas generated can be used and developed in a longer essay (this material could be helpful for either Essay 1 or Essay 2, which will deal with your experience of a piece of music).  
  OK, write your way through the below form (e.g., The first time….  The last time…) several times, each time including different details or impressions you had of the media object you’ve chosen.
The first time I heard/read/saw/experienced ____[media object title], I noticed….
The last time I heard/read/saw/experienced ____[media object title], I noticed…. 

25 thoughts on “HW for Week 5 (3/4)”

  1. Media Prompt I …

    If I were to describe the object in my Instagram post, I would describe it as organic luxury. It is an aesthetically pleasing housewarming gift that gently bends your mind when you examine it. It seems to obey the laws of physics that could only exist in a dream.

    The Vase has a sleek design that flows from the base to the wide open top. It seems solid. Maybe with a density between plastic and glass. Depending on who studies it, it can be relaxing or convey tension.

    The Vase looks as smooth as a granite kitchen countertop. To me, its zipper brings about the same feeling I get when I watch a teacher wipe a chalkboard almost entirely clean. Its appearance is as deceptive as a tall athletic kid who isn’t really into basketball.

    My comparisons are a bit unconventional, but believe me, they are accurate. –

    1. David,

      Thank you for this–I actually find your comparisons to be the most helpful for imagining the object in the IG image you are describing.

      The next step is to describe the image/post ITSELF (it is THIS, not the vase, that is the MEDIA OBJECT I’m talking about). Tell us how you found this image. Tell us how this image is organized visually: what is in the foreground? what is in the background? what is the palette (the array of colors/shading used)? what are the relative sizes of the objects visible in this image? what does the object in this image appear to be doing? how does it relate to any other visible objects? how does it relate to the camera/photographer/image-maker?

      All best,
      M

  2. Media Prompt

    His eyes are sharp as a Kingfisher, and the body is designed just to slay the opponent. He is a man with a predefined set of goals. He is an aggressive run machine that runs even faster when chasing. He is like the Dark Knight of cricket.

    The first time I saw this video of my favorite cricketer. I was astonished by seeing his athletic performance. I could not take my eyes off of him when he plays.
    Then I was seeing what kind of athletic gear he wears.
    The last time I saw his game. I already bought a lot the same brand that he uses while playing cricket like the MRF bat and Puma One8 Spike shoes.

    1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xm0kJChCzso

      The media I have chosen to use is a song called “Bambi Too” by Jidenna ft. Sarkodie, Maleek Berry and Quavo .
      In class I briefly stated this song reminds me of an Afrocentric Lullaby. The harmony, beats and melody of the song makes me feel like I’m in an African jungle. The song feels calm and It means a lot to me. The love of my life calls me “Bambi”. He knows I love animals and he believes my love for people and always finding the good in people is so “innocent”. Or in the words of the song “sincere”. When I heard the song certain lyrics stood out to me. “My dear, I want you here, But don’t get too near, for there’s lions beware”. The world is a scary place for “deer’s” or people who genuinely try to see good in people. Who trust blindly. Who can’t necessarily see that the person they love is a “lion” The song is about love and trying to be faithful “If grandfather never had seven wives. Then darling, you would be the love of my life.” The concept of seeing your head patriarchal figure never settling, always seeing a polygamist relationship, I can imagine this would affect one’s own ability to settle down with just one person. Quavo is one of the three migos and is known for his ad-libs. In this slower rap you can still hear Quavo’s adlibs in the background as he compares himself to a lion.
      The first time I heard “Bambi too” I noticed how fun the lyrics were. The play on words for bambi, my dear and lion and lying.
      The first time I experienced this song I was literally getting ready to meet my love for a date and this song came on next on my phone.
      The first time I read the lyrics I started to love the song more because I started thinking about my life with the grandfather lyric.
      The last time I heard “Bambi too” I noticed how the beat stays the same consistent however, in the middle is becomes extremely slow and I love it.
      The last time I read the lyrics I stated to sing the rap part and I noticed it had to have been another language they started rapping in. With the English I believe Sarkodie starts rapping in a ghanian dialect as well as English. True meaning of an Afrocentric lullaby.

      1. Sidebar: I always knew “Bambi too” was the remix to the original song “Bambi” by Jidenna but I never cared to listen to it. Until now as i’m listening to Bambi too so much and it’s so interesting that he mentions this song to be like a “lullaby” in the original bambi. It also seems like Bambi Too is his reasoning why he couldn’t be faithful.

    2. Islam,

      Love the comparisons–they bring this cricketer to life!

      The next step is to describe the form of the media/video/image/song ITSELF (it is THIS, not the content represented, that is the MEDIA OBJECT I’m talking about). Tell us how you found this media/image/video/song/etc. Tell us how this image/etc is organized visually: what is in the foreground? what is in the background? what is the palette (the array of colors/shading used)? what are the relative sizes of the objects visible in this image/etc.? what does the object in this image appear to be doing? how does it relate to any other visible objects? how does it relate to the camera/photographer/image-maker/songmaker?

      All best,
      M

  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SL6iqAfPuLU
    The media I have chosen is a scene from the movie Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice, directed by Zack Snyder. In this scene, a massive flood is carrying away destroyed houses with only the roof being visible. Families stranded on these floating roofs are holding on for dear life. On one roof, a mother is accompanied by her child and what I assume is her husband. As their last cry for help, they painted Superman’s logo on the roof. Hoping that he would arrive to save them. The mother is now standing up and staring off into the sky, crying with joy. As the camera pans to the direction she is looking at, Superman’s silhouette is seen in the sky surrounded by light as if he was an angel. His cape dancing with the wind. Her messiah has arrived. This scene stuck out to me because the director wanted Superman to be seen like a God, a savior, to the ordinary people and how people reach out to him as a symbol of hope. While the rest of the movie was mediocre, this scene was amazing, especially in 3-D.
    The first time I watched this scene, I gazed in awe as the visuals were very biblical.

    1. Denis,

      Nice work, particularly where you describe the camera pan: this is what I mean by writing an engaging description of a piece of media qua object—that is, how a piece of media is itself assembled.

      Tell us more about the way this scene is put together using the prompts below. Also, you might explain how the imagery is “biblical”; this could lead to some comparisons that might help readers imagine it on another level.

      The next step is to describe the form of the media/video/image/song ITSELF (it is THIS, not the content represented, that is the MEDIA OBJECT I’m talking about). Tell us how you found this media/image/video/song/etc. Tell us how this image/etc is organized visually: what is in the foreground? what is in the background? what is the palette (the array of colors/shading used)? what are the relative sizes of the objects visible in this image/etc.? what does the object in this image appear to be doing? how does it relate to any other visible objects? how does it relate to the camera/photographer/image-maker/songmaker?

      All best,
      M

  4. This song is legendary. It’s so legendary it’s almost cliche. I do not know one New York native that doesn’t know the song. It’s known as Brooklyn’s number one anthem all the way from 1994. All of New York takes this song to heart. You feel every lyric in your chest, if you don’t feel every one then you feel at least something. The song gives you a sense of pride. How couldn’t you feel prideful when hearing “You know very well, who you are. Don’t let em’ hold you down, reach for the stars.” The song sounds like success straight from the black man who was nearly swallowed by poverty. The song was designed in a way to compare what use to be and what could’ve been to how the artist overcame those things.
    Hearing it anywhere, my body can’t help but to interact with it by bopping my head and singing every lyric word for word.this song makes me feel gangsta, like I can do anything. “Living life without fear, putting five karats in my baby girl ear.” That was the goal of every black father in the hood. Listen to the song I cant help but to think ‘How the fuck did this man create this master piece?’
    The beat is so seductive pulled straight from 1983, almost 10 years before he hopped on the mic to create his own legendary song. Only a legend can come on a seductive beat saying “Fuck all you hoes,” then rap about everything but the hoes. There’s only one other man that can come close to such greatness and that is Jay Z. His ‘Hard Knock Life’ gives me a similar feeling.
    I can’t remember the first time I heard this song. Growing up in Brooklyn its like naturally embedded in your brain. The last time I heard it made me feel no different than every other time. I feel rich every time I hear the song. The song is fucking amazing, pure greatness.

    1. Tessaya,
      Great work here–your comparisons to Jay-Z help me begin to contextualize this track (but I still don’t know what it’s called or who it’s by–tell me that, please!). I’m also very interested by your observation that the song’s premise “Fuck all you hoes” isn’t followed up upon in the song itself. Can you say more about that? Some more prompts follow below:

      Where/how did you find this song?
      What do the sounds in this song sound like at the start? in the middle? at the end? Are they loud, soft, low, high, staticky, soothing, harmonic, etc.?
      What does the voice sound like?
      What instruments do you hear, aside from voice?
      What do the rhythms sound like? Are they fast? Slow? Even? Uneven? Bouncy?
      This is just a start…
      Thanks,
      M

  5. The first time I heard Teen Idle by Marina, I noticed….
    I felt light as a feather. The room was spinning and my eyes were glued to the ceiling. I was floating as the song continued. Time was nonexistent and I felt frozen in time. I wanted to slow dance with myself to the music.

    The last time I heard Teen Idle by Marina, I noticed….
    I didn’t feel much of anything. Almost as if the song didn’t hold the same effect it held previously. The lyrics didn’t resonate with me and I didn’t have a connection with the song, it felt like a distant family member that I once known but probably only met once as a child and never again.

    I can imagine the song being played in a dramatic teen movie or show (The Vampire Diaries or 90210), possibly during a rain scene, cry scene or a moment when the primadonna character is self-reflecting. When I used to keep this song on rotation, I would have this feeling inside for longing, for more – more of what? I wasn’t exactly sure (power? influence? beauty?). I can feel it was designed to feel emotional as the listener, but you can’t help but also feel an ounce of happiness as you sing along to the catchy lyrics. I think of the societal pressures of being a young female of high school and not feeling adequate in your current life.

    1. Beautiful post, Shanice. I love the use of the present participles that bring your first disorienting experience of the song to life: “The room was SPINNING…”; “I was floating…” I also love the CONTRAST between your first and last auditions of the song.

      Can you say more about the lyrics that produce both an “emotional” and a “happy” response in the listener?

      Can you think of why your more recent listening to “Teen Idle” was so different from your first listening?

      Also, below are some questions to get you thinking a bit more about describing the music itself:
      Where/how did you find this song?
      What do the sounds in this song sound like at the start? in the middle? at the end? Are they loud, soft, low, high, staticky, soothing, harmonic, etc.?
      What does the voice sound like?
      What instruments do you hear, aside from voice?
      What do the rhythms sound like? Are they fast? Slow? Even? Uneven? Bouncy?
      This is just a start…
      M

  6. https://youtu.be/fmZKZQ3B9Xw
    Grandpa’s Kitchen

    Grandpas kitchen starts off with foreign music and kids eating and enjoying themselves. This isn’t a song or a social media status I found last minute. This is a video that I found quite a while ago on the weird side of YouTube. The first time I watched one of his videos I noticed that he plays his foreign music in the background then gives a quote about life and then grandpa shares smiles between himself and his grandson. He starts off every video with a quick and friendly introduction because of the friendly approach it keeps me wanting to watch rather than skipping through the introduction. I love how it makes me feel like there’s still people out there who cares and I love how each video he’s always happy to cook huge meals for orphan kids and put smiles on their faces, not to mention that he cooks everything outside opposed to our normal “kitchen”. It’s similar to what a stranger most likely seen on a social media platform where people make videos about feeding the homeless. The last time I watched one of his videos it wasn’t the same. Grandpa had passed a couple of months ago but his grandkids took over. They still honor grandpa in every video, post a loving quote, and feed children.

    1. Alia,
      Thanks for posting about this video. I really appreciate the way your description begins and can imagine the opening sequence of the video. Can you keep going in this way, though, and describe the rest of what happens in the video so that I (and other readers) can imagine it in detail? The rest of your description is about what Grandpa’s videos do in general, but what I’m interested here is what this specific video looks like and shows us. Feel free to read some of my comments above for questions to get you thinking about how to describe the visuals as well as the soundtrack of this video.
      Bests,
      M

  7. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oRGDhgITetc&feature=youtu.be

    The song I chose is really fun to listen to at any time. It always reminds me of summer break & hippies. You don’t necessarily dance to it, but you can if you want to. It’s the kind of song you can listen to on repeat and get lost in the lyrics because it’s so soothing. It’s a good vibe. As I’m lying in my bedroom, I like to forget about time and space and I just like to think about happy thoughts. All I really know is that ”nothing really matters” and we should just live in the moment because we don’t know what tomorrow might bring us, so just enjoy your time here on this planet while you can and make the best of it.

    1. -The first time I read the lyrics, I thought it was really funny because it’s 3 minutes long and there’s barely any lyrics. You couldn’t really tell because of the structure/mood of the song, unless you decided to analyze the song word by word.

      -The last time I heard the song, I noticed that I don’t like listening to it as much. I wish i could erase my memory so I can have that first experience again.
      Overall this song is amazing and clever because the lyrics are about stolen music and being unoriginal.
      “Someone wrote this song before
      And I could tell you where it’s from
      The 4-7-3-6-2-5-1 to put my mind at ease…
      ….Please just have a laugh with me
      ‘Cause you know I’m borrowing by now
      These sounds”

      1. Interesting, Jeicot, that you had such different experiences between your first and last listenings. What do you think accounts for this difference?

        I want to know more, though, about what the music actually sounds like. To that end, here are some questions to consider (in addition to telling us the title and maker/author of this song).

        Where/how did you find this song?
        What do the sounds in this song sound like at the start? in the middle? at the end? Are they loud, soft, low, high, staticky, soothing, harmonic, etc.?
        What does the voice sound like?
        What instruments do you hear, aside from voice?
        What do the rhythms sound like? Are they fast? Slow? Even? Uneven? Bouncy?

        Best,
        M

  8. https://youtu.be/Cst6Y8OtfSo
    “Do Better”

    I wasn’t going to originally do this song, but I heard it on this new trending app called TikTok and it really stood out to me. The song is basically about a girl who is heartbroken. When I first heard the song, I was going through a hard time letting go of something that meant a lot to me and the song made me feel better and want to get back up on my feet. The tone is calming and persuasive. Some lyrics that really stood out to me were “your mind don’t feel the same, you’re going through bodily change, girl get back on your game” and as I mentioned before, the lyric makes you want to do better and pick yourself up. “Your friends try to tell you to leave him, but you feel like you need him”, I feel like every girl has been at that point where someone close to you tells you what’s right and what’s wrong for you and even if they make sense, you still end up doing the opposite because only you know what you really feel. Another lyric that stood out was “I don’t think you know your worth baby”, this one hit home because it personally took me a long time to find my worth and be confident and now it feels like I’m back to square one. Overall, the song is soothing and encouraging that it’s okay to move on and hurt for a while, but eventually everything will work out and you will find happiness.

    1. Unamta,
      Thanks for your words about this song. I’m into your description of the tone of the singer’s voice and your translation of the first quote.
      However, I’m wanting to know a bit more about this song, starting with the name of the artist. (You can use the artist’s name to make introducing quotes easier–we will continue to work on this.)
      Below are some other questions designed to help you write more about the sounds of the music itself:

      What do the sounds in this song sound like at the start? in the middle? at the end? Are they loud, soft, low, high, staticky, soothing, harmonic, etc.?
      What does the voice sound like?
      What instruments do you hear, aside from voice?
      What do the rhythms sound like? Are they fast? Slow? Even? Uneven? Bouncy?

      All best,
      M

  9. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97V4ZZqwxiw
    Eric Thomas – How Bad Do You Want It?

    This video is the type of media that I decided to choose. When I think of this video, it reminds me of an adrenaline rush that I get if I were to get in this zone, as if I was a marathon runner in second place that’s running his last leg of the race to take over first place, or if I was a basketball player on a hot shooting streak. During the video, the way Eric Thomas speaks to the group of kids in the room can get you fired up to motivate yourself to pick yourself up and do whatever you can by any means necessary to reach that goal of success you attain for. Thomas discusses this scenario about a guy who goes up to this guru in order to ask him what does it take for him to become successful, in which he tells him to meet him at the beach at 4 in the morning. While he met him there the next morning in his suit, ready to tackle on whatever journey the guru might take him on, the guru tells him to walk out into the water so much so until it reaches to his mouth. Afterwards, when the guy tries to run out of the water, the guru brings him back and holds his head under water until the point of where he could nearly breathe. Then, he brought him back up from underwater and had asked him when he was under there, what did he want to do. The guy said, “Breathe.” The guru then told him, “When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you will be successful.”

    That caption resounded with me in that it illustrates, time after time, how we may desire success but often do not put in that certain consistent drive that will propel us to that longevity of success. It is always easy to claim to be wanting to become wealthy, successful, and/or famous, but if we do not put in the amount of time and effort that it takes in perfecting our craft, we would never be able to sustain any type of personal success.

    I was first introduced to this by one of my mentors from a couple of years ago, and to this day, when I come across it, it motivates me to keep going and strive to accomplish whatever goals I have set for myself.

    1. Jayvon,
      It seems you were so motivated by this video that you wrote an incredibly good synopsis of the events in it. 🙂 Bravo on your first paragraph; it does what a synopsis is supposed to: it gives me a general sense of the events that take place in the video. The next step is to write about a few more of the visual details of the video itself. You’re doing this when you describe the captions, but I want more visual imagery of the video itself. To that end, some questions for you to consider:

      Tell us how this image/etc is organized visually: what is in the foreground? what is in the background? what is the palette (the array of colors/shading used)? what are the relative sizes of the objects visible in this image/etc.? what does the object in this image appear to be doing? how does it relate to any other visible objects? how does it relate to the camera/photographer/image-maker/songmaker?

      Thanks–
      M

      1. PS. In your synopsis, watch out for accidentally changing between present tense and past tense. Try to stay in present tense unless you cannot fathom it making sense to your reader to do so. (Remind me to talk about this more in class.)

  10. https://youtu.be/wOzQMCyPc8o
    NF- How Could you leave Us ( Therapy Session)

    This Song is about a Christian Rapper that explains his struggles of seeing his mother do drugs throughout the years of him growing us as a kid. Expresses his feelings through his singing and rapping talking to his mother that had an overdose. Trying to record his deep feelings and all the things he wanted to say to his mother.

    The first time I heard this was a song that you would have to listen again to understand the story he’s trying to tell the listeners. The story of his seeing his mother do drugs, when she was on drugs it seems like she was a completely different person. Having child services in the corner watching his mother act around him like it quotes “Some lady in the corner watchin’ us while she’s takin’ notes”.

    First time I saw the video was a hard thing to watch. NF shows his vision on how he remembered the way his mother acted on drugs. Growing up to his teenage years and young adult stages of life. Showing his mother stressing out in depression using drugs to feel “better”.
    The lonely days that he cried by himself because it was a lonely life growing up. Also has the cold black and white theme. Dark and gloomy.

    Listening to this song now makes me feel the sadness and anger he feels towards his mother blaming her for taking pills, instead of being there for her family, she rather take pills and only care for her pills. But the sadness of not being able to talk to his mother and spend time with her in person to have the personal connection again. This made me appreciate my mother for being there for me even more and the fear it would cause me to feel when the time she has left until she has to leave me and my sister.

    The song and beats itself has a low and steady beat when the choir is playing with him crying in the background. As he begins to start rapping the beat gets more intense backing up his way of expressing the anger he felt.

    1. Steven,
      Thank you for this–I really appreciate how you describe the lyrical content of this song and the way it evokes certain feelings in the listener with regard to the singer’s relation to his drug-addicted mother. Also, the way you build the first quote into your sentence so as to have it illustrate your meaning is really good.

      I do get a bit lost in some of this, though. First, see if you can use the singer’s name throughout your discussion of the song–for instance instead of saying “it quotes” use the writer’s name and the verb “sings” or “writes.”

      I’d also proofread all of this for accidents with verb tense and other typos–especially in the second-to-last paragraph.

      Lastly, keep building on your description of the soundscape itself in your last paragraph. This is a really good start, but keep going with it. Here’s my questions to consider:

      What do the sounds in this song sound like at the start? in the middle? at the end? Are they loud, soft, low, high, staticky, soothing, harmonic, etc.?
      What does the voice sound like?
      What instruments do you hear, aside from voice?
      What do the rhythms sound like? Are they fast? Slow? Even? Uneven? Bouncy?

      Thanks,
      M

  11. The media I picked was Selfish by Madison Beer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=978iHuFKfS4
    In this music video, a girl wearing a robotic-like skin-tight suit is in a dark room. She is laying down on the floor singing along to a very emotional song. As the song progresses, tears fall down her face and the room lights up and fades throughout. Then, around two minutes in, rain starts falling. She continues singing in the rain and kind of embraces it to fuel her performance. In the last half of the video, the rain starts to build up and there are shots of her laying in it. The first I saw the video, the part of the chorus, “Shouldn’t love you, but I couldn’t help it
    I had a feeling that you never felt it. I always knew that you were too damn selfish” stook out to me because I think that is something that most people go through. The last time I saw the video I realized that the room is probably somewhere she goes in her mind to cope with her feelings. The rain probably symbolizes her tears and finally letting her feelings loose.

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