Tag Archives: film

Connected – the film and the Melbourne event @slv

An email from Hamish Curry got me interested in a film called Connected: an autoblogography about love, death & technology which is screening at the State Library of Victoria (Village Roadshow Theatrette) on 23 November 2011 at 6.30 – 8pm. Well if Hamish is gushing about it, then I must see it.

Here’s the info Hamish sent in his email:


What does it mean to be living in a hyper connected world? How is it changing the way we communicate, relate, work and consume, and what impact is this having on our well-being and that of the planet around us? In this entertaining, exciting, and emotional film, director Tiffany Shlain takes audiences on an exhilarating roller-coaster ride to discover what it means to be connected in the 21st century. Shlain reveals the surprising ties that link us not only to the people we love but also to the world at large. A personal film with universal relevance, Connected explores how, after centuries of declaring our independence, it may be time for us to declare our interdependence instead. (Dir: Tiffany Shlain, unrated, 2011, 80 mins)


This event is highly recommended for those with interests in education, social media, communications, technology, sustainability, history, science, and culture. We have a special ‘Connected: Educator’s edition boxset’ to give away on the night.

Book online here – https://register.eventarc.com/event/view/6099/tickets/connected-an-autoblogography-about-love-death-technology-23-november

For those with a stronger interest in education, we’re planning to have a meetup prior, for an opportunity to share some of the programs and strategies that are changing the way we think about education.

This will also be at the Village Roadshow Theatrette from 4:30 – 6pm.

Please email me directly if you’d like to part of this informal meetup (HCurry@slv.vic.gov.au)

I look forward to having a diverse, passionate, and open-minded crowd on the night, and for us all to feel a little more connected.


Thanks, Hamish, I look forward to the whole event – film and discussion. So many good things happening in Melbourne lately in terms of meetups and good conversation.

 

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Filed under 21st century learning, Events

We live in a visual world

I’m hooked on pictures, as some of you may know. And since I haven’t shared for a while, I thought I’d throw in a few examples of the visual delights I’ve been discovering. Some of these go into my art blog for student inspiration and others are just chucked into Diigo.

I fell in love with this animation a little while ago.

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The Tadpole
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So much to love in this animation – the soft, translucent colours, the textures, the attention to detail and sense of wonder.

And how amazing is this paper art by Alexander Korzer-Robinson whose art focuses on the notion of the ‘inner landscape’.

The cut book art has been made by working through the books, page by page, cutting around some of the illustrations while removing others. The images seen in the finished work, are left standing in the place where they would appear in the complete book.

There’s something about Sea Hyun Lee’s red landscapes that I can’t define. That’s why you should read this analysis here.

Corinne Vionnet is the creator of a series of photographic works entitled “Photo Opportunities”, from hundreds of snapshots of tourist locations found on the Internet. By collecting and then bringing together successive layers of around a hundred similar “photo souvenirs”, these images conjure up questions about representation and memory of places.

I love the ethereal impression created by these dreamy versions of  cliched tourist landscapes.

Matatoro is directed by Mauro CarraroRaphaël Calamote, and Jérémy Pasquet.  Motionographer has a fascinating post with an interview with the film makers on the process of the making of the film.

Watch the film on Vimeo. You will not regret it; it’s brilliant.

You can see the rest of the pictures in mapolito’s Flickr photostream.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post. If you have any art/illustration/animation/film blogs you would recommend, please share.

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Filed under animation, art

Don’t forget TED for teaching

Engagement in the middle years of school may well be an oxymoron.

This was recently confirmed for me when starting off a year 9 class of boys in their research for an effective speaking competition. We gave them a brief: talk about an event which has had a significant impact on society or has stood out in history.

Hmmm….  reading long chunks of text wasn’t something they were going to do willingly, especially during the last period of the day. What about videos? Yes, miraculously focus was rediscovered, and the boys managed to maintain their concentration for almost an hour as they browsed the list of videos I’d prepared.

Fact known by all: young people respond well to information presented in video format.

That’s why TED is such a great teaching tool. I forget about it sometimes, but really, there’s so much information to spark thinking, discussion and debate.

Today the TED blog recommended the childish thinking playlist.

Today’s playlist is about kids and their brains, which hold the dreams and possibilities of our future. How can we teach them … and how can we learn from them?

TED recommends, amongst other videos,  Adora Svitak, who makes the case that grownups have lots to learn from “childish” thinking — creativity, audacity, open-mindedness.

Here’s another one:

Who are the leaders of tomorrow? Joachim de Posada shows how to find them — with a marshmallow

Dave Eggers thinks like a child to create a massively popular after-school tutoring club — starring pirates, superheroes, time travel …

Then you’re invited to share your favorite stories about kids in the TEDTalks archive –

Add your suggestions for this playlist to the comments below, or email contact@ted.com with the subject PLAYLIST: KIDS. (Jog your memory with the TEDTalks spreadsheet.)

A brilliant way to share best TED content within a theme.

The spreadsheet is seriously informative, and lists the name of the TED talk, the speaker, a short summary, duration of video and publishing date. Very nice. I really like seeing, at a glance, the shorter videos because they are often just what I’m looking for to show students.

I found Sirena Huang, an 11 year old prodigy on violin, playing beautifully and talking about her instrument.

TED’s format is satisfying, providing biography and links, as well as transcript. Excellent for teaching purposes. It also provides relevant websites, you can bookmark the speaker on the site if you like, and you also get a list of related speakers and themes.

I think I should plan to use TED in teaching regularly.

Has anyone used TED talks in teaching? Would you like to share your experiences?

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Filed under 21st century learning, Education, film, media, teaching

Images can change the world

Recently I came across this TED talk by co-founder of Getty Images, Jonathan Klein. Jonathan Klein talks about how images have the power to shed light on understanding, to transcend borders, religions, and to provoke us to take action. It’s a powerful talk using powerful images.

Although we’ve used images as communication since the beginning of time, it seems that our use of images has increased with services like YouTube, Flickr and other image-sharing applications. The internet enables easy access to images through online museums, image libraries and image-based search engines.

How much more powerful and persuasive is a cleverly created film compared to a similar text?

Currently this advertisement is showing on TV; I think it’s very clever.

And how amazing is it to see a video of historical event?

What’s an example of powerful imagery or film that you’d like to share?

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Filed under media, photos

Where the wild things are

 Where the wild things are by Maurice Sendak has been a picture book favourite for children and adults since 1963.

The book is about the wild adventure of a boy named Max who is sent to his room without his supper by his mother as punishment for misbehaving. Max wears a distinctive wolf costume during his adventures and encounters various mythical creatures, the “wild things”. Although just ten sentences long, the book is generally regarded as a masterpiece of American illustrated children’s literature (Wikipedia).

wildthings

Particularly interesting is that this picture book has been made into a film. Picture book – film. How do you do that? Where the wild things are is directed by Spike Jonze, of Being John Malkovich fame.

Watch the trailer here.

 You can also view scenes from the film here (from USATODAY)

Max Records, 11, is the boy with anger issues who escapes to a land where giant beasts roam in Where the Wild Things Are, the film version of Maurice Sendak’s 1963 storybook classic.

Jonze describes Max as a special kid who loves books. Well, his mother is a librarian. His father is a photographer. Jonze says Max is ‘deep and thoughtful, sweet and sincere, wild and imaginative and caring’. The film, shot outside of Melbourne, Australia, is coming out 16 October in USA. I’m not sure when it’s coming out in Australia.

I agree with USA Today –

How do you take a storybook that sparks the imagination and touches the heart with a mere 338 words and expand it into a full-length movie?

Spike Jonze, a director whose off-kilter idiosyncrasies were on display in his first two features, Being John Malkovich (1999) and Adaptation (2002), has always been drawn to Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are.  “As a kid, I just connected to it. I wanted to hear it over and over,” he says of the 1963 tale of Max, an angry boy who escapes to a mythical land of untamed giant beasts. “It’s like trying to explain why you love somebody. To me, the Wild Things are both cuddly and dangerous. I wanted to climb atop of them like Max.”

 Ten sentences have kept generations enthralled for decades, and have inspired a full-length film. Wouldn’t you like to be able to write ten such sentences?

Where_The_Wild_Things_Are

 

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The Mysterious Explorations of Jasper Morello

Love science fiction? Watch this.

The Mysterious Explorations of Jasper Morello is an amazing, award-winning short animated film which has been nominated for an Oscar and a BAFTA award. The silhouette-style science fiction animation has been developed by director Anthony Lucas, and the story has been inspired by Edgar Alan Poe and Jules Verne. What a combination! 

Quiet Earth gives a synopsis:

 In the frontier city of Carpathia, Jasper Morello discovers that his former adversary Doctor Claude Belgon has returned from the grave. When Claude reveals that he knows the location of the ancient city of Alto Mea where the secrets of life have been discovered, Jasper cannot resist the temptation to bring his own dead wife Amelia back. But they are captured by Armand Forgette, leader of the radical Horizontalist anti-technology movement, who is determined to reanimate his terrorist father Vasco. As lightning energises the arcane machineries of life in the floating castle of Alto Mea, Jasper must choose between having his beloved restored or seeing the government of Gothia destroyed. Set in a world of iron dirigibles and steam powered computers, this gothic horror mystery tells the story of Jasper Morello, a disgraced aerial navigator who flees his Plague-ridden home on a desperate voyage to redeem himself.

The whole film goes for 26 minutes. A great example of steampunk. I’m impressed by how simple animation, silhouette black on white, can evoke such a strong atmosphere and setting. All those dark, heavy machines flying around reminded me of the black hawk helicopters which have been training over my house in the dark without lights. Shiver.

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Filed under animation, creativity, film

From George Washington to Barack Obama

It would be remiss of me not to post something about Barack Obama’s inauguration. Not for the first time, I’ve shirked a difficult synopsis of a complex event by opting for a video.

Theresa McGee posted this video in her post on the The Teaching Palette. It’s an interesting visual journey through the line of American presidents.

There is a similar morphing video in one of my earlier posts.

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Filed under art, creativity, technology

The girl effect

Thanks to @presentationzen for this.

An example of how text can become more powerful in film. Simplicity, careful choice of words, sequencing, effect on viewer. How much more effective than traditional linear text. What do you think?

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Filed under Education, film, internet, technology, Web 2.0

Pinscreen animation and Gogol’s “The Nose”

I’m long overdue for variety in post content, and I apologize. I feel I’ve been ranting and raving on my educational soap box for too long, but the problem is, for all my reading, I haven’t come across anything worth sharing. Until now. I’ve just discovered pinscreen animation, and I think it’s one of the most remarkable unions of technology and hands-on creativity. Mind you, it’s a form of animation from the early twentieth century, but nobody said you had to discover things in chronological time.

On the website Focus on animation techniques, Marcel Jean explains pinscreen techniques:

In the early 1930s, engraver Alexandre Alexeïeff, a Russian émigré living in France, decided to go into filmmaking. Wishing to make films with an aesthetic faithful to the line and shading of his engravings, he invented a new type of device: the pinscreen.

The pinscreen consists of a white screen pierced by hundreds of thousands of pins that can slide back and forth, each in its own hole. When lit from the side, each pin casts a shadow, and when all the pins are pushed out, there is total darkness. But when pins are pushed in, their shadows are shorter, and the black become grey. When pins are pushed all the way in, they do not cast shadows and the white screen can be seen.

If you are interested in a detailed, illustrated account of the technique and equipment, you can read about it here.

Being extremely time-consuming, this was not a popular or widespread form of animation, but its uniquely tonal quality created with shadows of various intensity created by the pins, gives it a dramatic and even poetic quality not unlike chiaroscuro.

Several pinscreen films were made, including the Alexeieff’s Night on bald mountain (1933) and En passant (1943), and Jacques Drouin’s Mindscape (1976).

I’m always impressed by the time and effort people will devote to creative projects.

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Filed under animation, art, film

Web 2.0 supermarket – let’s go shopping!

There’s a veritable cornucopia of Web 2.0 goodies on this site. It’s the Web 2.0 comprehensive directory to a TON of social networking sites presented by Jake McAuley from GO2WEB20.net THE BOOK. This is version 2 updated 16/09/2008.

Here are some applications I thought might be useful just from the first few pages.

1K: Read and Write Short Stories
1000Keyboards is a website created for writers to submit, share, critique and communicate in an environment tuned to promote growth and exposure.
http://1000keyboards.com
Tags: share,create,communication

12 seconds : Share Short Videos
12seconds.tv allows friends and family to record and share short video updates about what they are doing or where they are. You can use a webcam or a cellphone. It’s a free, easy, and fun way to stay in touch.
http://12seconds.tv
Tags: video,TV,webcam,mobile

22 Books : Create and Share A List of your Favorite Books
22books is dedicated to the creating, sharing, and viewing of book lists. Start out by browsing some of the featured lists to the left and then open a free account and start creating lists of your own.
http://www.22books.com
Tags: book,share,list

280 slides : Create & Share Presentations Online
Create beautiful presentations, access them from anywhere, and share them with the world. With 280 Slides, there’s no software to download and nothing to pay for – and when you’re done building your presentation you can share it any way you like.
http://280slides.com
Tags: presentation,create,build

3D Package : 3D Box Maker
3d package is a 3d-box graphic generator. 3d package lets you instantly create 3d-boximages online, free. Just upload pictures for cover and sides and then get 3d-box in you favorite imageformat (JPG, GIF, PNG supported). Post them in your blog or anywhere else.
http://280slides.com
Tags: generator,3D,package

5min : Life Videopedia
5min is a place to find short video solutions for any practical question and a forum for people wanting to share their knowledge. 5min aims is to create the first communal Life Videopedia allowing users from all over the globe to contribute their knowledge by sharing visual guides covering variety of subjects.
http://www.5min.com/
Tags: knowledge,video,share,tool,Israel

99 Polls : Free Online Web Polls Generator
99Polls offers a simple approach to making Web Polls, which you can post nearly anywhere on the Web. 99Polls.com poll-creation tool requires no knowledge of HTML or coding, and once made, the poll can be posted on blogs, Web sites, and social-networking profiles such as: MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, Xanga and more…
http://www.99polls.com
Tags: poll,generator,social,Israel

All That : The Search that Never Stops
Allth.at will keep looking for your item on the sites you select and report new search results back to you. You can also choose to have new results emailed to you or, you can subscribe to the RSS feed and have your new search results delivered right to your RSS reader.
http://allth.at
Tags: search,engine,track

Alltop : All the Top Stories Covered all the Time
Alltop is a directory of stories from the most popular blogs on the Internet. Updated constantly.
http://alltop.com
Tags: content,link,aggregator

And I’m only selecting from the A list. This list will boggle your mind, distract you from the task at hand, and possibly ruin your relationships. Browse at own risk.

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Filed under Education, photos, Web 2.0