Connor is progressing really well – the vlogs are coming together really well in the short time frame we have and are creating a character profile for Connor which gives enough character depth without being full of exposition. The trick with these vlogs is to provide enough push off points to the other platforms while still providing enough distinct content for the platform to be considered sustainable.
In an ideal world, I would love to have like 6 months of content created before our ‘big event’, to create a really full character profile which fully explored all of the nuances of Connor’s character. This is the benefit of the diary, as we are able to backlog content and put dates on things to create the illusion of this project going on for longer than the 12 week semester. I would have also loved to flesh out the Facebook aspect of our project, create profiles for people which exist in their own world. It would have been really good to incorporate some more social media elements into our project, such as some Instagram work. I don’t know what the most effective way of linking these projects would be, it would just be cool to try.
That’s the annoying thing about creating projects within the coursework, the 12 week timeframe doesn’t really allow for projects for fully develop and come into their own. Realistically, by the time you suss out the class, the groups you’re working in, and the nuances of your project you have 6 weeks to create a project which is fully fledged.
Here’s hoping all the other elements of our project come together on time – the news articles are coming together really well and Tiana is handling the diary. My main concern at this point is the photos, as I want them to be as effective as they possibly can be. We are scheduling time with Tom next week to take them, and then pulling together a collection of photos from our personal albums and working him into the background of them.
Our first piece of the Connor puzzle has come together – our first YouTube video!
We’re really happy with what Thomas has put together – considering we just send him the script (which very few directions) we are so happy with how it has come together.
Our aim is to put two videos up each week for the next few weeks – and we are just writing them week by week. They’re only going to be short videos, like two minutes each, but by the end we should have about 10-15 minutes of videos.
All of the other bits and pieces are slowly coming together – Tiana is working on the diary and we have slowly started drafting the newspaper articles. My only concern at this point is the photo album – as it’s meant to be the draw card into our project I’m just really hoping it works and is as effective as we are planning.
This week we were given a reading by Renira Gambarato, which explores the relationship between signs, system and complexity in relation to transmedia storytelling. I found this a particularly hard reading, mainly due to the fact it involved algebra, which I haven’t dealt with since 2011.
However, after a few readings, I finally got what Gambarato was talking about and pulled a few key ideas which I found interesting, as well as ideas which relate to our final project.
Garambato defines a system as the composition (or the set of components), the environment and the structure of that environment. This can be applied to any environment, be it a school, a workplace, or a narrative world.
Garambarto argues that a transmedia environment needs to involve “at least five main areas (systems)” to be considered an engaging project
Garambarto argues that a fundamental of transmedia storytelling is the relationship between the story and the people interested in it. This relationship can be divided into two different ways – interactivity which allows the audience to relate to it without changing the story and participation which allows the audience to engage with it and express creativity in relation to the story.
Garambarto explores the dichotomy of sytsems, either being open or closed. An ‘open system’ is one which invites and allows the audience to fully immerse themselves in the story, and allows them to express creative control over where the story can go. In opposition, a ‘closed system’ is one which does not allow the audience to interfere with the narrative..
The most interesting thing I picked up from Garambarto’s reading is the idea very few projects are created as open projects, that “all the story development was already planned and controlled”. I was thinking about this particularly in relation to the projects we have undertaken this semester, which are predominantly closed systems. The idea of creating a story but not having control of where it goes or how it will finish is really terrifying.
This week I wanted to provide a progress update on Connor
Webisodes: I don’t remember if I wrote this anywhere – but we’ve decided to scrap the webisodes. Given the small amount of time we have left this semester and how much time they would take to produce, we decided as a group to get rid of them. This gives us some more time to ensure the other artefacts are going to be as high quality as possible.
Vlogs: We’ve set up a YouTube channel to upload all of your videos (link coming soon and we are looking to upload 1/2 videos a week, with at least 5 in total. We are taking turns in writing them and going to write them week by week – just to allow changes in our project to progress. The key points I want covered in the vlogs are to really demonstrate Connor’s character, as well as providing links to our other artefacts.
Diary: Tiana has decided to take control of the diary – which I am more than happy to relinquish control of. Obviously we will help out creating content as much as we can.
Photo Album: We have planned to take these photos in Week 10 – we still haven’t decided the best way to approach it yet. We have created five Facebook profiles each, in order to make the community surrounding Connor as real as possible.
Articles: We have started drafting the articles – as we want to appear as professional as possible so we need to start on these as soon as possible.