Latest Entries »


Our last and final blog post for class was to reflect on our semesters work in the course.

During the semester there were several projects I had to work on, but there were only a few that I actually was satisfied with the end project. The one I most enjoyed working on was the individual Soundslides project. I had the chance to interview April C Hughes who provided me with a fountain of audio to work with. The final result especially the audio came out really nicely.  It was also one of the easier projects to work on. Sounslides is a great program I enjoyed, I only wishes I knew how to HTML format the end result.

I learned how to edit audio well in this course. Although I don’t think I will be doing a lot of audio editing as a farmer I still think it could prove to be a nifty tool. I like to think that I have become a better interviewer. Some of my interviews have been poor to say the least however; the comments I was provided with from the professor have been helpful.

My plan after graduating in May is to be a farmer in California. Next semester I am looking forward to taking a class titled Organic Farming, which I am hoping will prove useful as I begin my career on an organic farm. This course did not change my mind about my future career path, but I did find the course very interesting and would love to learn more about HTML formatting. There were no skills that I was expecting to learn that I didn’t gain. This course was everything I expected it to be.

In general I really enjoyed the course. I feel I learned a lot related to the journalism field. Most of the courses I have taken were very non-hands on. However I felt that I actually learned how to do something and if I wanted I could go out and have a particle idea of what needs to be done.  For that I thank you Professor Landerville.

On Monday we had the opportunity to watch and listen to several of the sounslide projects in class. During that time I made several mental notes about things I liked and disliked about my fellow students work.

The first project that I want to comment on is that of Cody Hess and Patrick Pajak, titled “2011 Wyoming Cowgirl Volleyball Team.” I learned a lot after watching there well prepared audio/visual story. The story that they told was very interesting and conveyed a lot of excitement from the interviewees. The audio was very clean and having the school song at the beginning and end was great. I liked how they switched back and forth between people during the project.
I felt the photos corresponded well with what was being said. However, the pictures were not of the best quality, but I don’t blame them because the gym provides poor lighting. The only real suggestion that I have would be to provide clearer pictures of who was talking. I was unsure which girls were being interviewed, besides the coach. Overall very well done.

The second soundslide I choose to critique is that of Alex Edwards and Ashlee Oslund, titled “Geological Museum.” After watching this video I felt that I had really learned something new. I knew of the Geological Museum, but had not idea that it was as famous as it is. The story told was not just interesting, but also very informative as well. The photos were of great quality and followed the story being told pretty well.  As for the audio is was good and I enjoyed the ambient noise provided to the story. The only piece of ambient noise that I didn’t like was the dinosaur, I felt it was more distractive then helpful. Overall the project was very enjoyable and educational.

The final soundslide comes from John Czerwinski and Andrew Joannides, with no title. I felt there were many flaws to this project and that is why I primarily choose this one to critique. My first concern with their project was that the students preparing the project did not take more then half of the photos. However, the photos did correspond with the story very well and the story was very interesting as well. I loved hearing about student athletes experience from there own mouth it really puts it into a different prospective.  The audio was not of the best quality, but was good enough to tell the story. Overall I would say it was enjoyable.

For the past couple of weeks my partner and I, Megan Tanaka have been working on an audio interview for class. Our goal was to find a realistic journalism story here in town to create a photo and audio interview. Multimedia journalism is becoming a more and more popular form of journalism; therefore it is important to know how to participate in these different forms as we look for jobs after graduation.  We decided to focus on student workers that work at the University of Wyoming. We narrowed our topic down to how students balance work and school.

Our photos display a variety of different students working in different locations in order to show the large number of workers in the Union dealing with similar school and work balancing issues. For our two different sources we interviewed a married graduate student and a single undergraduate student. We felt there was enough contrast between the two to offer an interesting story.

It was really great to work with Megan because we both took on different roles that suited us best. My partner is an amazing photographer, so she was in charge of taking the photos and providing the captions. I on the other hand took care of the interviews and editing them. Then we came together and assembled the final pieces.

During the interview I wanted to have a little background noise of the Union to add an extra touch. However, the background sound ended up being really difficult to work with and resulted in a product that I didn’t particularly enjoy. I tried my best to filter out some of the noise, but the task was very difficult. I still think that the interviews came well despite the background noise.

Working with the Soundslides program was a breeze. If you have all the materials ready then all you really have to do is insert them into the correct place. The only problem that occurred was trying to turn the file into a zip file. However, in the end everything came out okay. My only advice for myself would have been to interview a male and a female. The contrast between the two may have given more interesting answers.

Please enjoy the Interview done by Megan Tanaka and me by following this link.

Audio Interview Ideas

I actually have a couple of really great ideas on stories that would be a good idea. I think these ideas will go well with this project because it should be an interesting story to tell and the pictures will fit perfectly.

For my first idea thought it would be interesting to interview someone that works on campus preferably in the food sector. The university employs lots of students to work at places like Panda Express, Elements, CJs. It would be interesting to hear them talk about how they got their job, some good experiences, and of course the bad experiences. Since there are so many places to eat here on campus there are a number of people I can try to interview. My options include Washakie, the Union, Elements (in the classroom building) and Ross Hall.

The second idea would be to interview a graduate student or professor about their research project. Currently there are many research projects happening right here on campus that students don’t even know about. Some of these projects could one day change the world, so it would be cool to learn about one f those projects. Being a student here makes it a lot easier to find out about these projects. I plan to ask my teachers to see if they know of anything and check with my advisor to see if he has any students himself working on interesting projects. There are also a number of graduate students in my cases that I could try and probe.

Finally, I think transportation is a large part of a community. Where I come from there is a great public transportation system, even though our town population is one third the size of Laramie. I want to interview a someone about there views on transportation. I think it is interesting because Laramie could really benefit from a better transportation system. Each student is effected by transportation wether they ride the bus or not. Some sources include: students how ride the bus, bus drivers, and administration in charge of transportation options, or even the Laramie City Council.

Audio Interview of “Ashlee’s Sorority Experience” by Alex Edwards

I thought it was interesting to listen to someone In the Greek community to explain why they joined and what has kept them there. It’s not often that you really ask those kinds of questions to someone a part of Greek life.

The entire interview really flowed well together after editing. The only break that I caught was right after the introduction, but that is a difficult spot to transition from. I felt the author did a spectacular job at making sure she was clear on the recorder.  There was little to no background noise interference during the recording.  I also thought the photo in the blog made the story connect better to the readers. They were able to see her while she is with her sorority sister giving the listener a good visual. Overall I felt the story was edited and completed well.


Audio Interview of Sara Whittle by Megan Elliot

Wow, I thought this story was not only really well-edited, but also very interesting. At first I was afraid that the idea of listening to her talk about decorating her house would be boring. After listening I wanted to hear more about her decorating.  I think what made it so interesting was how she talked about it growing and turning into a community appreciation during the holidays. It’s amazing how sometime the people around you are doing incredible things you never knew about?

I really have to suggestions on how to improve; I think you put a lot of time into this. The transitions are very well done, making it flows nicely. I actually take it back I have one suggestion that might have made the interview better. If the interview had been done with her daughters around it might have given it more depth. Really nice job.

 Final Thoughts

I really enjoined this project and learned a lot while doing it. I think I have already really expressed my own learning experiences in previous blog post. It was a good learning experience listening to other people interviews because it helps you see things you missed on your own work. I to have an audio interview that I did with Megan Tanaka on Creative Communication and can be found on my blog. I look forward to the next stage in this process.

Edited Interview

Edited interview with Megan Tanaka about her creative outlets.

Working on this audio clip proved both challenging and easy. When I first began I had a very difficult time trying to understand how to use Audacity. It took me a while to figure out that you had to push stop to edit a selection. However, once I got that down editing was really simple and kind of fun.

I really enjoyed working with this program. It is really easy to use once you figure it. Audacity is also really fast, I have used some programs that take a long time to render. I was surprised about how many times I had to listen to the same clip over and over. After awhile it began to get a little old.

If I could do it over again I would make sure that there are longer pauses between questions and answers. I would have also made Megan reword the question back into her answer. The only thing I wish that could have gone smother was importing the file into Audacity. I first tried it in .m4a format and it showed up really short and fast. Then I converted it into .wav format, but when I took it to school it was really long and there was no sound. Somehow I finally got it to work.

Overall this was really fun to do. I really have enjoyed this section of the course. I had never listened to any of the One in 8 million stories before and now love them.  The whole Idea of putting pictures to a story is kind of old-fashioned, but I really enjoy the idea. I think there is a lot of potential in this area of journalism and full of fun possibilities.

Raw Audio of Jordan Dixon Interviewing Megan Tanaka

Last week I had the chance to interview a classmate and good friend. I know Megan is a very creative person and wanted to learn more about some of her passions. It was really great to hear her talk about how much she loves to read, write, and capture photos. I learned a lot more about her creative outlet then I have ever known. It was a really cool experience.

Using a recored is very strange, it makes the interview  awkward.  I often found myself speaking at the recorder instead of Megan. It is also strange having something record your voice saying something that could be saved forever. We were able to get a study room in the library to interview each other. It was a great atmoshphere to really have a comfortable interview. Howerver, being on a tiny room really changed they way we would normally talk to each other.

I learned that you really need to take it slow during an interview. I started off slow, but my nervous got to me and I found that I was not pausing between questions. Its funny because even know after the interview I find myself thinking  of new questions. I look forward to editing the audio I think it will turn out ever nice.

Audio Stories

Lynn True: The Sports Fan

True is discussing her oppression with sports and how they bring balance to her life. Her job requires her to spend 12 plus hours working on a film and have nothing achieved, while a football game ends in about 3 hours. I was really captivated by her story because I wouldn’t have guessed she was a big sports fan. She talks about the connection she made with her father and it that I found to be very interesting.

The journalist who made this video did a good job at transitioning the audio. They must be in a quit location because there is little to no background noise. However, you can hear a phone chime at one point. There are some really cool things that she says and it was nice that she added them.

There was nothing that I didn’t like and thought the author did a rather swell job.


Pricier PB&J’s In The Forecast, Thanks To Peanut Shortage

The story is talking about the peanut shortage in America and how it will affect peanut butter prices increase. Although the shortage is not extremely high people can expect to start paying up to 70 cents more per container.

I especially enjoy this story because of the particular topic it is on. Who really wants to pay more for a ordinary peanut butter and jelly sandwich. NPR has a particularly good way of formatting their stories that makes me really enjoy them. They always start with and introduction that is usually given by someone other then the author. Then someone else takes you on a journey through the story. For example in the story I listen to they take you into the home of a family while interviewing them. You are able to hear the children laugh and giggle during the interview.  The entire story really just draws you in.

Unfortunately, I again have no suggestions for improvement. Although this audio story and the one I previously mentioned are very different they both possess qualities I really enjoy.


Eliza Smith: The Home Cook

Eliza Smith is a Jamaican woman that lives in America and how she loves to cook. She talks about how she really enjoys cooking for other people and watching them eat. Often times she charges people who come over to eat. Half of her profits go to a charity and the other half to her.

I enjoyed this story because of her captivating voice. Although she has lived in America for a long time you can still hear her Jamaican accent. You are able to hear the passion in her voice about the food that she cooks.

The author did a good job of transitioning between sound bites. There are lots of little ambient sounds through out the story. You can hear the pilot on the stove click and hear pots and pans dangle around.

I number one concern with this story and the first one that I selected is that they are to short. I get wrapped up in the magic of the pictures and story that I hate when it ends.

This week for my blog post I have the learning opportunity to critique the photos that my fellow students took. I have never been good at taking or critiquing photos, but  I do love photos.

Caleb Tillapaugh

I thought that every photo you took was every uniquie and interesting. I enjoy  how each photo has a main focus point or object with there still being other objects in the photo. The photos draw you in to the primary object without you getting distracted by the other things happening. The lighting in each photo is very well done.

Each caption really well written giving the name of the person and describes well what is happening. However, some of the photos are difficult to see who is in them and I think photos with a more identiable  person would be better.

In the sports related photo it is difficult to see what she is doing. The glass is also scratched making it more difficult to see the photo well.

Justin Trygg

The sport feature photo is really great, but I happen to disagree about your comment of the light. I think that the lighting is well done and really captures the event. The photo is really intense and the looks on there faces really draw you in.

I really like the photos that you took, especially “15” and “Lost.” I like how the people in each photo are near the bottom corners, yet your eyes draw straight to them. They both seem like they must be feature stories because they tell a story without even having to read the captions.

The title for each photo really says it all. I really understand what is happening or what you mean when you gave each photo there title. As for you captions those are well done too. They are very detailed giving the name when possible and a great description of what is happening. My only suggestion would to make them a little more formal instead of informal.

I don’t really have any notes about any of the photos. You can tell who is being featured in each photo even when there are other people in it. A really well job done.

Creative Devices

Vodpod videos no longer available.

To begin I discovered from this activity that taking photos is not a strong area for me. I do enjoy the magic of photography, but don’t know if I have the time. Good photographs take time capture something just right. You also have to wait and be lucky to get that one great shot of a hundred. This project has driven me to want to keep trying because once you have that great photo it is a wonderful feeling.

Photo One: “Street Sign” This photo was taken in Fallon, Nevada late at night with a high shutter speed. This made it possible to capture just the sign and fewer lights behind it. I consider this to be my background photo because the sign is primarily the only thing you focus on. Although there are a few lights in the back ground you only really notice the sign.

Photo Two: “The Town Sparkles” Again this photo was also taken in Fallon, Nevada late that night, but with a slow shutter speed. I consider this photo to be my color photo because of the different colors produced from the lights in the background. You can see lots of blues, yellows and greens. Each light seems to hold its own power while illuminating the town.

Photo Three: “Rose Shine” I choose this photo to represent the texture that can be seen in the flower. I had left a flower out the night before causing it to dry. The next day my friend throws it in the pool and it gave off this really cool texture and shine. The appearance of the texture went from looking like organic material to possibly glass. I took lots of photos of this flower, but only posted one.

Photo Four: “What?” I didn’t notice until I uploaded that they all look confused or unsure and now I have no idea what they were looking at. I believe that this photo should be considered as my rule of three. They are all standing side by side looking over. The photo wouldn’t be the same if there were on one or two people.

Photo Five: “Forest of Grass” I choose this photo to represent view point because of its low in-depth view of the grass. It’s almost like you could get down low and trek though the grass. The grass appears to be much larger than normal. You could imagine this is the view point of a small animal such as a mouse or creeping cat.