Frank and I just completed our first “academic” year as students in the WVUncovered classes at the school of journalism at WVU. The project is designed to teach community publications about new media, and two main classes were held to show and teach us about online video creation, and online photo slide shows.
Remember, we’re not a newspaper, in a classroom full of newspaper people. Online videos and slide show presentations really make sense for a newspaper, but what about us? Video of me running the rototiller? Feeding the hens? Harvesting the garden? Pictures of turkeys mating, deer grazing, geese fighting… Who’d want to see that?
Well, it appears that some folks do want to see that. To us, it’s just normal, hum drum, every day life.
But still, I still have reservations…
I may be able to publish a magazine, tend three gardens, take care of hens, learn about bees, work the census, create a board game, and maintain some level of consistent “micro blogging,” but — I’m not always on top of the house keeping….
Videos, photos, will show that…. To the WORLD…
I know, people in Thailand or Zimbabwe might not care if there’s chicken poop on the walkway or a pile of laundry to be folded and put away, but I really don’t want the whole world to see that, especially people I KNOW. My mother would die of shame.
But, nevertheless, Frank and I will be forging into the online video and photography scene. We’ve got big plans… Garden reports, chicken reports, weather reports, maybe some cooking tips, plenty of wildlife video.
I’m excited about it, and still a little nervous too. In many ways, instead of me reaching out and posting to you, “out there”, I feel like I’m inviting all of you into our humble home.
I hope you don’t mind that “lived in” look.
Two-Lane Livin’ Magazine was one of the fortunate publications in W.Va. to be selected to participate this year in the WVUncovered Program at West Virginia University. The program is led by the university’s School of Journalism, designed to introduce papers to new media.
Our first workshop session was this past week; two days spent learning about digital photography.
Of course, Frank and I both already have digital cameras, but neither of us use them to their full capacity. We spent two days on campus in Morgantown, Thursday evening and nearly all day Friday, learning about digital cameras, photo composition and lighting, photo cataloging and indexing, and photo editing.
This is just the first of many workshops to come.
Visiting Morgantown and WVU campus was an experience. I haven’t been to Morgantown in more than 20 years, and I haven’t been to a metropolitan city in — years.
Traffic was intimidating. It too an hour and twenty minutes to travel 3 miles from the hotel to campus and find a parking space. If I had not had Frank with me, I never would have made it.
Seem lame? Well, there were three other participants who never did make it there on Thursday evening. One never made it on campus, and two others made it to campus, but never found the right building.
I was taken aback by several things.
First, to a lady who is used to parking meters that don’t take quarters, I thought 75 cents per hour for a parking meter was a little stiff. Luckily, we found a meter that didn’t work right, and got more than three hours for $1.50.
I was also a bit surprised at today’s campus fashion. I didn’t know that mini skirts had gotten so “mini.” Now, I’m no prude but, if you sit down and your entire back side comes in contact with the classroom chair — I believe your skirt is too short.
The other thing I found interesting is how every, and I mean EVERY student walked around with a cell phone or ipod ear plugs in their ears. When lost on campus, we considered asking one of the many students walking around for directions. There weren’t any that weren’t ear plugged or in the middle of some phone conversation.
City life is very different from country life. I didn’t realize it had changed so much since I left the city. For one, I’m rather accustomed to greeting the people I pass on the sidewalk. I at least make eye contact and smile, and was prepared to do so as I walked around campus. But, whenever a student came near, they immediately avoided eye contact.
Inside the classroom however, and inside the buildings, folks became friendlier. If greeted, they responded. If you smiled, they smiled back.
All those involved with the WVUncovered program were very friendly. They were genuinely happy to have us there. We felt extremely welcome in the School of Journalism, and look forward to visiting again.