Tales of DS106 – Fall 2015 Coming Soon!

Tales of DS106
Tales of DS106 Fall 2015

Looking ahead. A little over saturated with No. 6 after the last few creations and fairy tales needing a little kick in my mind to focus. I should be working on radio show things – but sort of lost in figuring out exactly what to do or work on yet. More than anything I was realizing I need to make a new banner for the blog as the season changes and haven’t decided what it is going to be yet. So shiny object chasing for a few days!

My first direction was to start working on family stories. One of my own goals with ds106 was to improve skills so I could use the tons of photos, video, sound, and stories of family and begin threading it together for those around now and in the future. Real stories seem far more complex than creative stories. After a day of organizing files I realized I have a TON of prep work and need to figure out a strand to start creating the pieces first.

The comic book covers for Tales of DS106 for the fall UMW cohort looked interesting. As a quick practice I decided to create one for the upcoming session. I will probably follow along as I love seeing the work the students create and the twists and turns. I am not holding myself to a schedule of trying to keep up with them this round at least that is my thought at this time – but definitely follow and support them in their work. I am moving into #4life and will continue TDC and work on projects but not within the Friday to Friday schedule and maybe not even on the same areas of focus. I will let it up to serendipity as they create and find new ways to do things that look interesting to do as well.


  • Inspiration and style guide from: https://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=13291551
  • Paul Bond graphic from: http://ds106tal.es header
  • Jim Groom Graphic from his avatars
  • Bitmoji avatar graphic from my account
  • Created rectangle for upper third and filled with color
  • Added two vertical rectangles for side and filled with color
  • Downloaded and Installed PostCrypt Font from http://www.2200freefonts.com/
  • Added Filter>Noise to lessen the abruptness of color of the coverTales2015cover
  • Added a rectangle as a horizontal divider to separate sections. I wanted to have a drop shadow – but moved on instead of trying at this point.
  • Figured out how to change the line spacing by using the properties menu when in Text mode – helps a lot!!! Before I would create each line and try and place them!
  • Would like to have the title outlined text instead of all one color – another thing to discover and master.
  • I did use Photoshop – as before mentioned – I have it so use it.
  • And of course – had to GIF it. 🙂 did this by creating two single graphics and set them at .1 sec in timeline.

From here  I may begin to create a cover for each family member for their story. I plan to use many media and assemble in a flipbook format so that each story can have all of its pieces and tangents instead of a summary like overview. Still thinking it out.Getting family to collaborate is harder than opening up to the ds106 community. 🙂

Update: My sister-in-law has been awesome at providing new content and will be visiting this month – so her help will probably be just in time to kick off something with her portion of the family story. Once that is in place I think my girls will get the idea and other family so then it will be up to me to keep up with things!

Not a Hulk- but a Hunk! Giffing #6 B Cing U

Working on GIFs again during this week of self directed learning.

I have been wanting to figure out how to put two layers of action going on and sound. I also was very impressed with the Hulk GIF by Jim Groom and wanted to figure out how to do one similar – but not quite into the comic book genre yet.

I struggled with the two different movements by thinking of them as two different movements. Working with the layers I figured out that I would need to blend the two actions into one to create not blend them after creating.

I captured the b-cing-u footage from The Prisoner with MPEG Steamship and made a GIF. Capturing left it a little dark so for the active frames I adjusted the Brightness/Contrast throught the Auto option so  that they changed as needed rather than trying to set each one at the same ratios. Same ratios would have been jumping instead of fluid. This time Auto was a good choice.

I captured a still of  Number 6 in his handsome pose.

I then split the handsome No. 6 and ended up with a right and a left.

I create a background with text  – sorta of a poster or book cover fashion using the Village font.

The b-cing-u gif I cut down to 12 frames.

It was then creating a layer for each with the split handsome portrait in different spacing to look like it was cut in half and opening.

I then reversed the process to have it look like it was closing. Having the first ones done, I was able to have them in the background and recreate the handsome face closing with the new b-cing-u gif background. Happened upon that by accident  – a good accident!

I set the timing so the full version was longer to loop from end to beginning. I also lengthened the time of the gesture of the B at the forehead to be longer. All other frames were set a the same rate.

Lots of repetition – but worked.

I haven’t got around to figuring out masks yet and not sure if they could have been applied to this rendition.

My next challenge is to add sound to the GIF. another next is to make the image behind to be something different……….

I again used Photoshop because as long as it is paid for and I have it – I might as well use it! I also want to drop it into Fireworks and see if that produces something different.


Giffing it on down the line

As the #noir106 has wrapped up, it is time to get back on track and figure out this #4life path I have started upon.

One thing I have noticed is that when you are #4life finishing a unit doesn’t mean it is checked off and done. You go back and you go deeper. DS106 is units – not weeks. You do and create in an ongoing state as new inspirations and collaborations come about. So you jump from design to video to audio to design to video and so forth.

Thanks to Rochelle Lockridge, I am embarking on Flipbooks for family stories. I love the ability to join many media and make it a complete story that someone can go through in any way they choose. I was hitting a wall thinking I was going to create videos to music for the last 80 years of family history!!!

This approach also gives me the opportunity to develop and create different media to include. Sound, video, design, photos, and more. It does have the potential for ongoing art creation and getting better at in each media. It also allows one to meet others on the path as they start or continue.

As Spring 2015 UMW has been winding down I have begun to uncover some #ds106 open course people through Mariana Funes #ds106 news. There are a few working on things and the stuff is cosmic! The news feature has helped more than the RSS feed. There are too many spam and other things in the feed that  make it difficult to follow. What I still can’t figure out is why the general open course participants don’t TWEET when they create? All the connections, feedback and connections that are lost. Tweet dammit! Use the hashtag – let the world know you are creating. It’s not going to bring in lots of traffic – but may bring you a person or two that will make a difference in your growth and work.

Now – what I have worked on besides planning my flip book is GIFs. After a few it finally hit me – DOH! these are not slide shows – so now I am on the path of trying to figure out how to make one picture be a story through some short animation. Below are the creations so far and what I am building upon. Still a long way to go especially when I look at John Johnston’s curation of ds106 TV Gifs!  

YOU HAVE TO SEE THIS!      http://johnjohnston.info/ds106giftv/#

I have used Photoshop, MPEG Steamclip and my own photos. A tutorial that was helpful was making smoke on YouTube. http://photoshop-tutorials.wonderhowto.com/how-to/create-smoking-gun-using-adobe-photoshop-cs4-357542/ It helped in making smoke as well as showing me how to use other features in PS.

I also found that using my Google Drive is a good way to share the GIFs and be able to embed them in WordPress…..here are some of my recent attempts.

Still some learning and some polishing to do – as well as making sure they are a picture story. One creation at a time!

Here are previous GIF creations – I decided to create a category for them under ds106 Assignments.

Queen Tillie and the Rabbi

Design Unit

Create a tv/movie poster that captures the essence of the story with minimalist design/iconography.

Poster: Minimal Design

Based on my character Jerry and the adventures and daily activities of growing up on Milwaukee’s Eastside in the early 50’s.

This was 2.5 stars, however it seemed easier for me. Having done professional work in websites, learning systems, professional development promotional brochures – the idea of a minimalist or any kind of poster or flyer seemed like another day at the office. Although the days doing this kind of things were anything but “another day” – they were the fun days of being able to create.

Design principles in play are:

  • Color – keeping to one color and shades/tints.
  • minimalism and use of space –  framing and using the rules of thirds was helpful in framing for visual impact and effect.
  • symbols – using the icons of the football helmet and the buildings.

One can make a case for many design elements but focusing on a few brings the result into being.

Using PhotoShop for image creation using layers and beginning with 3 rectangles of color each a little smaller to make the frame. Icons and text were than added. The image flattened and exported as a jpeg for publishing. The icons were selected and edited to add or change color for this poster. The E was lime green when found. The helmet was only a black and white icon. Times Roman is the font.

Queen Tillie and the Rabbi were the class president and the class thug turned businessman in life who narrate the story of the neighborhood and the adventures, antics and life of those who lived on Milwaukee’s Eastside in the 1950s.

Post Script: It is really bugging me that I didn’t align and make the borders even! Every time I see this I want to go back and adjust. And if you didn’t see it – thank you….! I will go back and fix that….just not sure when…..balancing learning and products yet. 🙂