Design Portfolio

BGC DML site contributions

When I began working in the DML in Fall 2010, my role was primarily that of monitoring the lab and performing occasional updates on the DML website. Over the past three semesters my responsibilities have expanded to include support for students and faculty, running occasional workshops, and developing suites of instructions detailing the functionality of the software most frequently used in our academic community.

The foremost of these concerns the wikis that are increasingly used at the BGC to facilitate the development of per-class syllabi and encourage class participation with editing and commentary. The full breadth of the wiki how-to pages can be accessed here, but the stills below illustrate the organization of the pages and the screenshots incorporated for guidance.

A second set of how-to pages pertains to Prezi, an online presentation software. For greatest possible clarity, these pages integrate tutorial videos I created with Snapz Pro in addition to screenshots.

I have also been asked to blog for the DML site from the student perspective on the use of digital media at the BGC and some of my personal experiences with the tools and resources we use. The first in this series concerns the varied uses of wikis in BGC courses (on this site, original post), and the second the diverse applications of Prezi (on this site, original post).

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Video Essay - New York City Documentary

This video essay explores the mutual influences of the 72nd Street and Broadway subway station and its surrounding neighborhood from the 1904 construction of the subway to the present. Scripted and narrated by myself, I drew archival content from the collections of the New York Public Library, New-York Historical Society, and the Museum of the City of New York, and made use of my own photographs and film footage.

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Interactive Map/Timeline Mockup

The course "The Social Lives of Things: The Anthropology of Art and Material Culture" (click here for course description) constituted a follow-up to an exhibition development course that led to the Spring 2011 BGC Focus Gallery exhibit entitled Objects of Exchange: Social and Material Transformation on the Late Nineteenth-Century Northwest Coast. As a class we envisioned an online extension of this exhibition, and each student devised new research to contribute to the existing catalog (my contribution can be found here). We also conceived of an interactive map and timeline that could be navigated in various ways, and with the input of my classmates and professor I devised a mockup in Photoshop to actualize our ideas.

These four screenshots demonstrate the potential stages of timeline and map navigation (click thumbnails to enlarge).

The first illustrates our template: The objects contained within our collection, a map of the northwest coast, available search terms to sort the collection (by nation and by collector of the artifact), and a foundational timeline displaying crucial reference events.

In the second, the viewer has chosen an object. The map displays the trajectory of its creation and trade, while relevant search terms highlight and timeline events specific to this work appear in blue among those of the template.

In the third view, the user has selected search term "Haida" from among the names of the First Nations. The map now displays the Haida territory in pink, and the object images and collector search terms associated with the Haida highlight. Timeline events concerning the Haida nation appear on the timeline in blue.

In the final stage, the viewer designated "Bishop/Powell" from among the collector search terms. The map indicates those areas of the Northwest Coast this pair traversed, the objects and their associated First Nations highlight, and timeline events related to their travels emerge in blue on the timeline.

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Artifacts in the Age of New Media

Course Description

This past spring I took a class entitled "The Interpretation of the Artifact in the Age of New Media." Weekly topics such as online exhibitions, digital collections, the emergence of social media, visualizations, and handheld devices, foregrounded discussion about the possibilities and challenges presented by museums' adoption and adaptation of new media technologies. We investigated critical scholarship regarding these developments, and each student selected and analyzed at least one "case study" apiece to present and discuss with our colleagues each week.

Final Project - Busby Berkeley: Crafting Films of Modernity

This project comprised an online multimedia presentation analyzing the works of Busby Berkeley. I utilized content I concurrently researched and developed in another course—Design in Film and Television—and also represented my vision for interactive activities. The partially functional dynamic gallery I created in Flash, a program I had never before explored. I was similarly unfamiliar with CSS, which I used in conjunction with HTML to customize a wiki platform. Adobe Illustrator and Fireworks, with which I designed various elements of the site, were also new to me. The endeavor provided valuable hands-on experience grappling with issues of audience and tone, organization and navigation, and the integration of functionality and aesthetics.

For reasons of copyright the site is private, though I can provide a username and password to interested parties. Please see the screenshots below for a sense of the project.

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Research Presentations - Experiments with Prezi

Play Analysis

A comparative analysis of the designs of three productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream: Max Reinhardt (1905), Josef Svoboda (1963), and Peter Brook, 1970. Despite varied staging solutions I found numerous intriguing parallels, and concluded that these productions could "be understood as progressive steps toward liberating the work’s realization from its traditional representational modes, with each demonstrating an endeavor to actively engage the audience’s imagination and to incorporate a distinct conception of the stage as a dynamic, contributory component of the theatrical design."

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Visual Expression

With the instruction that we should imagine ourselves scenographer culling visual inspirations, this rendering displays the visual material I've gathered from which I would begin actually executing the production design for Tennessee Williams' Suddenly Last Summer. My presentation includes the directions given in the play, as well as particular passages that hint towards costume design and atmosphere. Using a drafting table as the framing device for my gathered material, I addressed these considerations through photographs of costumes and locations, color palettes I formulated on Kuler, my own sketch of the environment I imagined, and paintings I felt resonated with the visual metaphor I had in mind.

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Designing Dance and the Dancer

My final paper considered the interrelationship between set design, choreography, and the presentation of the dancer over the course of the twentieth century. Focusing on the works of Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes, George Balanchine's innovations to classical ballet technique and costuming, Martha Graham's technique and her collaborations with Isamu Noguchi, and the more contemporary works of Pina Bausch, William Forsythe, and Jiří Kylián, I investigated evolving perceptions of the dancer's body, its movements, and its interaction and integration with the physical environment of the stage.

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