Unearthing creative possibilities: Trish Roque's website, personal blog, & portfolio

Media Diary Entry #1

Note: I will occasionally use this blog for my assignments in my Principles of Digital Multimedia class. From the syllabus:

This seminar class examines the historical and conceptual basis of multimedia; and the central role of creative process and interactive narrative in multimedia expression. We will also survey the nature of sound and light, human perception of and digital representation of media as well as the devices and methods of capturing, transporting, storing, displaying, and distributing multimedia.

The Assignment is to post to a Media Diary: At least twice a week write out a diary entry on your personal interactions with media. Mindfulness and self-aware observation is the focus of this exercise.

This is my first entry.

I began this evening’s entry in my personal (handwritten, non-digital, aka paper) journal, and quickly found myself wanting to blog about it. That alone says something about this assignment. Why did I leave my journal and jump to my blog? Mindful awareness of media in my daily life – ask questions: why do I choose certain media over another in a given moment? I find it interesting that I have a small chest of personal diaries dating back to when I was in the sixth grade! And since my arrival in the Bay Area in 2000, I have only filled one journal. That is definitely another topic to think about.

Ok, back to the reasons I chose to blog instead: in my journal, I was writing about magazines. I was getting ready to go to bed when it dawned on me that I like to read in bed before falling asleep. However, I began to wonder why it was only magazines that I read in bed?

I wrote in my journal:

My choice in literature is not in books but in magazines — magazines that I received as free subscriptions in lieu of those Northwest Airlines miles that I knew I would never use. So I thought – why not? I subscribed to Outside, The Economist, Newsweek, Simple, Rolling Stone; and out of the blue, we started receiving The New Yorker. We suspect this was a gift subscription but we’ve never been able to find out from whom this gift came.

Well, that list of magazines certainly says something about who I am; I should probably also add that Jon gets Motorcycle Consumer News, Sportrider, and Automobile. That says quite a bit about him as well…

Do I actually read all these journals? Nope. I would say that I toss about half of them into the recycling bin, though I do try to at least open them before I fall asleep in bed. But thinking about these magazines made me wonder when it was that I last read a book?

That question is what lead me to blog about this assignment instead of continuing in my personal journal. Blogging about this assignment would give me immediate access to information. I could do things like link to the book, and the author. It felt more immediate to link then to have to handwrite my explanation about this author.

I find myself going on so many tangents, and why do these thoughts always occur in the middle of the night?

Back to the book.

The last time I read a book from front to back was during the camping trip Jon and I took in August, when I promised him that I would not bring my laptop. [See, I could link to the pictures from our trip – I can’t do that in my journal.] When you’re in the middle of nowhere, no electricity, just a campfire, your choices are limited. I brought media with me during this trip. We had our camera, my sketchbooks and drawing supplies, magazines (yes), and books.

The book was Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell. Wow! Fascinating and entertaining – filled with trivia and random facts. Did you know that Robert Todd Lincoln, Abe’s oldest son, aka Jinxsy McDeath, was present or in the near vicinity of three presidential assassinations? I did not know that prior to this book!

I find it quite appropriate that Sarah Vowell would be the author of the last book I read, considering that she is a great example of a multimedia artist. For those who do not know, not only is Sarah Vowell a writer, but she was also the voice of Violet Parr of Pixar’s The Incredibles, and is a regular contributor to This American Life, a radio program that airs on National Public Radio, which also launched in television format this year. Their website contains podcasts of the radio programs (their stories are always interesting – I particularly like the Break Up song episode) and the TV episodes are available on iTunes.

MULTIMEDIA is everywhere!

What is all this doing for me right now – or doing to me?? Is it adding to the quality of my life? Is it giving me more happiness? I’m yawning, I’m tired, my wrist feels sore, it’s 1 AM, and yet, here I am feeling compelled to continue this entry.

Is this a problem?

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