Month: April 2014

Disability Resources at the University of Arizona – By Lindsey Wilhelm

For my final multimedia project, I focused on the disability resources offered by the University of Arizona.

I attended several Disability Justice Project workshops, where I observed students, faculty, and community members discussing various aspects of disability, such as oppression, history, activism, and justice.

This piece features interviews with the workshop facilitator, Zach Coble, and a workshop participant, Toni Saia.

I also focused on the DRC’s Adaptive Athletic Center, which provides accessible fitness to disabled students, faculty, and community members.

This piece also features interviews with Physical Access Coordinator Sherry Santee, Gym Monitor Kayla John, and Pete “Chief” Padilla, the quad rugby assistant coach and Adaptive Athletic Center user.

As a whole, the DRC at the UA is a valuable resource that provides community and access for disabled people.

Blog Post 5

What It’s Like to Run 135 Miles at BuzzFeed.com

Using a GoPro camera, 41-year-old Josh Spector ran 135 miles in the Brazil 135, an “ultramarathon” in Caminho da Fé, Brazil. “What It’s Like to Run 135 Miles” was produced by BuzzFeed’s Henry Goldman, but since Spector carried the camera during his run, he created most of the videography.

The video starts with Spector speaking to the handheld camera about his nerves for the impending race. As he speaks about his experience with running and the reason for doing the Brazil 135, a montage of his race is shown. There is piano music playing softly in the background during the montage.

Several times throughout the piece, Spector checks in and speaks to the camera. The piece plays with light because Spector films as he runs during the night. As the dark footage is shown, with occasional streetlights and moonlight setting the scene, Spector’s voiceover speaks about how lonely he felt during this point of the marathon.

BuzzFeed stationed several people with cameras at certain points throughout the marathon. Most of the race footage was created by Spector as he held the camera, but at certain points, someone else is filming him, and you can see him running on the path. I would have liked the piece better if it was entirely from Spector’s perspective, but this footage was nice because it gave a different view of his run.

The piece ends with Spector running through the tape at the end of the race. A text slide states that his finishing time was 32 hours and 49 minutes. The piece ends with a still photo of Spector’s bare feet from the back, showing the blisters covering his heels and the soles of his feet.

This piece is one of the best multimedia pieces I’ve ever seen because it was so original and interesting to me. Running 135 miles sounds absolutely impossible to me, and to watch someone’s experience and hear their thoughts firsthand is truly inspiring and captivating. I thought the handheld camera was a good way to show Spector’s experience from his perspective. I also thought the use of the piano music was a nice touch, and it didn’t distract from the audio or the piece as a whole.

Overall, this piece was very well done. I think the personal documentation of an experience makes for an interesting multimedia piece, and all of the audio, video footage, and photos were clear and technically well-produced.

Blog Post 4

Waiting for Death at LATimes.com

“Waiting for Death” is a multimedia piece featuring audio and photographs by Liz O. Baylen of the Los Angeles Times. This piece is about the late Edwin Shneidman, born May 13, 1918. He was an American suicidologist and thanatologist, a person who studies death. He died on May 15, 2009.

The piece begins with natural sound of Shneidman’s heavy breathing. Within seconds, his interview begins, and you can hear the age in his voice. He speaks about being 90 years old and knowing that he will not live much longer. However, his attitude about death is fitting for someone who has studied death all of his life. “Enough, already!” he says, expressing his desire to be free of the “gratuitous bullshit” of life. His interview is engaging and interesting throughout its entirety. I think that Baylen did a wonderful job of editing this piece.

The audio that Baylen collected of Shneidman’s voice is extremely clear. There is no background noise whatsoever. Also, there is no sign of any editing that Baylen may have done on the audio because it sounds very clean and natural.

The photographs that are shown on screen during Shneidman’s audio interview are in focus and composed artistically. The photos have rich color, and they are pleasing to the eye.

However, the only issue is that there is not much cohesion between the photographs and what Shneidman is saying. This is understandable because most of the audio consists of Shneidman discussing his views on death. However, the photographs show his daily life – where he lives, his surroundings, as well as a few environmental portraits where he is looking at the camera. I enjoyed seeing snippets into Shneidman’s life, but I wish that there was more variety of photographs.

Overall, this piece is one of my favorites because of the unique, interesting subject and beautiful technical elements, like clean audio and clear pictures.