Just 2 Weeks Until Summer Classes

Wow, I’m not sure where the time went this spring, but I can say I was pretty busy with new classes. Summer will be no different, it turns out, as I have more than a handful of new classes to prepare for. And it all kicks off Sunday, June 11th.

Intro to Filmmaking Class Starts Friday

Students will gain first-hand experience through in-class assignments and group projects that will engage them in scripting, shooting, and editing their own videos. They’ll learn how to use professional tools, such as lighting and sound equipment, as well as how to run (or just work on) a professional set. We’ll discuss all aspects of how to tell a story with sound and image, including the artistic challenges of dealing with light and how to use music and sound effects to help tell a story.

Graphic Design & Handmade Books

I’ve been thoroughly enjoying all of my new classes this semester; it’s just that I never considered what life would be like teaching three new classes at once. In a word, it’s been a whirlwind.

I’d show pictures of my dining room, which looks like it’s been hit by a whirlwind for sure, but… I’m sure you’d rather see photos of all the cool projects I’ve been up to instead.

Kids Make: Digital Mandalas and Stop Motion Animation

This ninety-minute once-a-week class presented a new challenge, but I got some great advice. Simple projects every week – that is the strategy for engaging this group with the stop motion process (which can be slow and tedious even for adults).

So Much to Art; So Little Time

Banners are super easy and fun, and I’m enjoying making the digital collages and swapping out images every so often. I hope to introduce my students to this technique once they have enough images to draw from.

Press Freedom is an American Value

One of the primary roles of the news media is to serve as a watchdog on government and other forms of consolidated power. No matter how one feels personally about specific news outlets, reporters, or stories, the ongoing presence of the free press is essential for our democracy to function.

A New Conversation About Literacy

While literacy has long been understood as essential to improving quality of life, the term has not kept pace with society, which has introduced new forms of encoding information while the world was trying to teach everyone how to read and write.

On My Way to Steal Your [Steampunk] Girl

For months now, whenever I’ve told anyone about my concept for a YA steampunk time travel adventure featuring a young female protagonist, ears have perked up all around as people’s faces relax into a smile that’s full of interest and imagination. That’s great – and it’s more than most writers could hope for in response to their book or series idea. It’s a popular concept. As it turns out, it’s so popular it’s kind of already been done before – in a way.

Relaunching the Indy Screenwriters Meetup

Ever since I started teaching filmmaking classes – maybe even a little before that – I’ve been approached by people¬†interested in screenwriting, asking if I know of any classes or workshops around town. No, I didn’t. A couple of years ago, an acquaintance I’d met through a filmmaking meetup started a screenwriters meetup. But he…

Making Mandalas

Since I’m having so much fun drawing these, and painting/coloring them in is so incredibly relaxing, I’m offering these mandalas as free downloads. I hope you’ll use them to either paint with a digital tool or just print them off and get out your markers. If it doesn’t lower your blood pressure in 5 minutes, you’re welcome to yell at me in the comments.

Announced: New Committee on Media Literacy

Ever since the results of this past election were seemingly manipulated by fake news, people have been asking themselves if they can even tell the difference between real and fake, leading to the conclusion that we are, in fact, living in a post-truth world where facts such as these are irrelevant. Perhaps the irony in this logic isn’t readily seen, but honey, if we decide facts are irrelevant, they become so.

New Visual Storytelling Projects

The holidays are over and the new year has come. It all happened so fast that I find myself now in some sort of tailspin or other, comically trying to grasp all 25 million projects that flew up into the air all at once. There’s good news to be had there, though, and it’s one…