Tag Archives: @learnpublishing

Upgrades, People! Upgrades!

Notice anything different? And no, I didn’t get a haircut (although I desperately need one). Okay, fine, I’ll tell you… Look how accessible it is in here! I have dedicated some of my time to make sure that I Wear Your Grandad’s Clothes is a website for everyone, and that no group or individual is left unable to consume the content that I am putting out. To some of my readers who do not require any additional assistance when scrolling the web, it might look like much, but I hope that those who do are pleased with the changes I have implemented into the site! Let’s take a look at what’s new:

  • Accessibility Toolbar: 

Thanks to a handy dandy plug-in called One Click Accessibility, you can now find a pretty, orange button on the left hand side of the site which opens the accessibility toolbar. I got the inspiration to add this feature way back when I did my first peer review on Midnight Stories, who had the same toolbar on their site. Some of the toolbar’s features include: the ability to increase or decrease text size, underline links, change text into an easier-to-read font, and options to change the site’s colours to grayscale, high contrast, negative contrast, and light background.

  • Alt Text:

Although it is not written out immediately under the image, I have written out alt text for every image that is displayed on iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com. The alt text can be accessed by either using a screen reader through your browser, or if you right-click while hovering your cursor over the image then select “inspect,” you can find the description within the HTML after the tag “alt=”. This was my first time writing alt text for images, so hopefully I did alright!

  • Text-To-Speech:

Even though many who depend on text-to-speech features likely have one already installed onto their computer, I have also provided a button on my blog posts that will provide text-to-speech that can be found at the bottom left-hand side of the post.. I used the plug-in called ResponsiveVoice, which is a little bit slow and has a janky Australian accent, but it definitely does the job. I’m sure there are better text-to-speech Chrome extensions or something like that, but I figured I’d offer one just in case.

  • WP Accessibility Plug-In:

I installed the plug-in called WP Accessibility, which searches over my entire domain and corrects/suggests corrections to my site to make it more accessible. Some of the services that it provides for me are: pointing out images that need alt text, preventing links from opening in new windows, and adding outlines to elements in keyboard focus. 

I am definitely still learning and working to better my site and become as accessible and inclusive as I can be, so please feel free to comment below any suggestions you have to make iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com even more easily usable.

Raspberry Beret(s): The Prequel

You might have seen my recent blog post titled “Raspberry Beret(s),” which is an article that recommends some of the best songs to queue up in your headphones on your next thrifting haul. If you haven’t read it yet, which I would definitely recommend giving it a leaf through, it features a collage of remixed portraits of women wearing raspberry berets (yes, like the song by Prince) in the iconic pop art style of Andy Warhol. Now, I definitely did not draw this detailed group of figures by hand, instead I used a relatively new technology known as an artificial intelligence (AI) image generator.

To create these images I used Picsart’s free text to image AI generator, which is extremely similar to the more well-known DALL-E system. I had heard a lot of buzz going around regarding this new-fangled AI image generator programs – how cool they are, how easy they are to use, how they might be infringing on copyright or people’s privacy, etc… – so when the chance to test drive one of these babies was thrown in my face I knew I just had to take it. 

Andy Warhol pop art style portrait of a woman wearing a beret with unintelligible writing on it.
Andy Warhol pop art style portrait of a woman wearing a beret and big strawberry-shaped earrings.
Andy Warhol pop art style portrait of a woman with dimples wearing a beret.

Picsart, which is usually my go-to free alternative to Adobe Photoshop, is really quite intuitive and pretty straightforward with all of its features, and there was no exception for its AI generator. To get an image, all I had to do was type in a prompt or phrase into the search bar and in a click of a button, its AI engine took care of the rest, however, much like  DALL-E, the images’ “success rate can depend on how the caption is phrased (https://openai.com/blog/dall-e/). It did request for me to provide a moderate amount of detail in my prompt, and it was also recommended that I select a handful of key words from a cache of various adjectives. I suppose the more information you give to the AI, the more precise and personalized it can get with its images, which I was a bit surprised by because I had assumed that too much information might overwhelm its systems and result in a sloppy mashup of digital goop. I settled on the prompt “woman wearing a raspberry beret in pop art style” along with the key words: Andy Warhol, illustration, portrait, and vibrant colours. The results were really quite impressive – if you had shown me those images and told me that Andy Warhol created an entire raspberry beret series of pop art works I would have absolutely believed you. 

So, since I went to all this difficult and tiresome work to type this all out to create the images, do you think that it is fair to consider myself the artist of these pop art portraits? I honestly don’t think so. At the end of the day, I think that images generated by AI systems such as DALL-E and Picsart aren’t really art – the AI image generator is more of a tool to help us humans conceptualize and visualize different and perhaps abstract ideas. The AI makes images out of other images, rather than using images to pull reference from or inspire new images or works like organic artists do. So, please don’t start thinking I’m some visionary digital artist with a whole bunch of Andy Warhol flare – I’m just capable of pressing some keys on my laptop to form a sentence to get some magical robot to draw me things.

Digital Goldilockses

I’m sure you’ve heard of the children’s story about Goldilocks and the Three Bears; a little blonde girl wanders into a house in the middle of the woods belonging to a family of bears who are out for the day, and she makes herself right at home by going through and using their things. First she rummages through the bears’ kitchen, sneaking a taste of each of their porridges to decide which one is just the right temperature for her to devour, then she jumps in and out of each of the bears’ beds to decide which one is the comfiest before snuggling up for a nap. As Goldilocks snoozes away, the family of bears come home to find a trail of half-eaten porridge and chaos that leads them right to the bedroom where they find the cheeky little intruder. Why on earth am I telling you children’s fairy tales? Well, perhaps it’s because you and I are more like little Goldilocks than you’d think…

Even though you may not try to or be aware of it, everything that you do has an in-erasable digital footprint, like you’re Hansel and Gretel dropping digital breadcrumbs as you scroll through the online world. These data trails can provide a lot of information on what you’re doing and where you are in the world; as explained in a podcast titled Digital Breadcrumbs with Dr. Elisa Oreglia, this information can be collected through enabled location services or analytics engines within social apps, your online banking card when making a purchase, or even just a simple Google search. If you use the internet, which I know you do because you’re reading this right now, this fact affects you in one way or another, and you too have your own trail of digital footprints. It really makes you think: what kind of trail am I leaving behind? Thinking about that deeper, I made a little infographic that illustrates my personal online self, which consists of different aspects of me: the filmmaker, the networker, the writer, and the stalker. I feel that these four kinds of categories sum up who I am online, which isn’t too scary, I guess, but I still feel like the internet knows more about me than I remember telling it. With that in mind, how would you sum up your online identity in four categories? Are they something you can be proud of? One way that I like to check up on my digital footprint is by punching my name into the Google search bar and seeing what comes up (this works well for me because I have a fairly unique name, I can’t promise this will work for everyone). Last time I checked, searching “Makena Leyh” on Google will pull up my portfolio of written articles for Simon Fraser University’s newspaper, The Peak, along with my Facebook account, some film screenings that my work has been a part of, and some scholarships that I have been awarded. Honestly, Google is kind of making me look good by highlighting my achievements and showcasing my art, so I don’t mind the breadcrumbs that I’ve dropped at all!

Inforgraphic decorated with abstract shapes. An illustration of a desktop computer sits at the top with its screen reading "My Online Self." Under the computer there is an illustration of a person looking at a film camera, next to text that reads "! The Filmmaker. Actively pursuing a career in the film industry, I have worked on a multitude of short film projects that can be found on platforms such as YouTube and Instagram." Beneath that is an illustration of a woman talking while holding a sheet of paper beside text that reads "2 the networker. I use Facebook for the sole purpose of networking within Vancouver's film and media industry by belonging to a variety of groups." Beneath that is an illustration of a woman talking while holding a sheet of paper beside text that reads "My written works for Simon Fraser University's school newspaper, The Peak, are published online - and I guess I run a blog, iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com, now too!" Beneath that is an illustration of someone in an pversized hoodie looking off into the distance beside text that reads "4 the stalker.  am a relatively quiet entity on social media platforms - I rarely post, but I follow hundreds of other creators and silently consume their content." Beneath is more abstract shapes and text that reads "Makena Leyh iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com
Simon Fraser University
Infographic created using Canva"

Thinking deeper about the concept of being digitally tracked at almost all times in our modern society, does that make you uncomfortable or do you care at all? Personally, I can see both sides of the coin: it’s nearly impossible to achieve any real privacy in today’s day and age, but if no one has privacy anyways, then does it matter? I don’t know. I’m a Gen Z baby born in 2003, and I think growing up in such a technologically driven time has really conditioned me and the rest of my generation to be fine with having little to no privacy; being watched or tracked has just been kind of normalized. I definitely can’t speak for everyone my age, but I do know that’s not an uncommon feeling among young people. At the end of the day, we’re all just a bunch of silly little creatures running around on a floating rock in outer space anyways, so why does it matter? 

Reflection on The Site

This is the last process posts for this class and I think it is a good idea to a quick reflection and the things I have learned along the way.

This site has been on so many ups and downs as a reflection of my semester. With no time, I struggled to find ways in displaying my contents online. I found it hilarious that the site is about me being a design student, and it took me almost until the end of the semester to work on the visual design of the site. My defense is how busy I had been. Currently, I would say that the blog is fairly close to the vision I had at the beginning. With the images and content, they portray who I am as an individual online fairly well. I wish I could have more time to work on the public posts, showing my creativity in podcast and videos. I can work on it after this class.

From this class, I am more thoughtful about the content I posted online and the relationship I have with my audience. Also, I make me think about the potential my posts could make to my audience. I hope I could use this knowledge more on my YouTube channel, since I’m going to start working on it again next year.

My Final Post

[Original Post Date: 12/6/22]

Well, this will be my final post of the semester. So I wanted to take this time and reflect on how much I’ve grown as a person over the last couple of months.

I originally set out when making this blog site to become more confident when sharing my art pieces out to the public, outside of my immediate circle of friends or family. Looking back now, I never really understood why I was so scared to share my art pieces in the first place. Maybe the process was something unfamiliar to me. Maybe I was afraid that people would judge too harshly. Or maybe it was simply that I didn’t want to. Whatever the case may be, making this blog site and posting my art pieces was definitely something out of my comfort zone and has helped me grown as a person and as an artist. And, miracoulsly, made me realize that sharing my art wasn’t as scary as I intially thought it would be.

So I wanted to give a huge shout out to Suzanne Norman and Lauren Jeanneau, the teaching team behind this course. Thank you for giving me this opportunity to step outside of my comfort zone and explore something entirely new to me. I’ve always been meaning to share my art pieces out into the world but I’ve been hesitant for unknown reasons. Thinking back at the start of the semester, it’s kinda silly to me that I was so hesitant and unwilling to share my art. But it’s also quite incredible how much I’ve grown in confidence within the span of a couple of months. The people that conducted a peer review on my blog site commented on how all of the art pieces were all really well done. Those small comments gave me a huge confidence boost in my abilities as an artist.

To everyone reading this post, thank you. Even if you stopped by just to view one post, that small act means a lot to me. If I ever make it as a successful illustrator (let’s be honest, probably not. But maybe? Unless?), I will remember this as being a huge stepping stone for me. Perhaps I will continue to post here throughout the coming months. Or perhaps I will just look at this site to remind myself how much I’ve grown during these couple of months, or how much I’ve grown by the time I’m revisitng this site.

And so, a new chapter begins for everyone. And I wish you all good luck on your next ventures, whatever they may be.

Thank you to everyone. Exist in peace.

Goodbye. Now, leave.

Establishing Community Guidelines

[Original Post Date: 11/29/22]

I believe community guidelines are important to establish what type of content is or is not allowed on a site. An example of community guidelines that I have taken inspiration from is YouTube’s set. (link: https://www.youtube.com/intl/ALL_ca/howyoutubeworks/policies/community-guidelines/).

I took inspiration from this site as it had a similar type of content and the main source of interaction between the creator and the viewer was through the commenting system. I took a look through the different sets of community guidelines that YouTube has currently in place. There are three umbrella terms that I would consider adding to my own set of community guidelines; posts that include violent or dangerous content, sensitive topics, and spam.

To me, spam is more likely to occur than comments that contain sensitive topics or violent content as my blog site has not amassed a big enough audience that would lead to someone posting comments. Therefore targeting spam with my own set of community guidelines would make the most sense. I would tackle this by installing plugins that stop bots from commenting on spam in my posts. I would consider using the ‘Block Spam WordPress’ plugin

In terms of tackling comments that include sensitive or violent topics, I would consider the following. If there were to be one or two comments that have been made that include violent and/or sensitive topics, I would manually remove these comments. In the case of there being multiple comments being made throughout multiple posts, I would just disable my comment system.

Transmedia Integration

[Original Post Date: 11/22/22]

Transmedia: where elements of fiction are told through different forms of media (i.e., T.V. shows, movies, books, microsites).

Transmedia can be seen in multiple types of established IPs. Take “The Dark Knight” for example. The Dark Knight utilized transmedia during its marketing schemes leading up to the release of the film. Microsites, which are smaller websites dedicated to advertising a specific product, were created to clue in on key story elements of the film. One of the microsites created was for an electoral campaign for one of the characters within the film named “Harvey Dent” who was running for the position of DA. The microsite showcased a poster with the text “HARVEY DENT FOR DISTRICT ATTORNEY – I BELIEVE IN HARVEY DENT”. This campaign poster was showcased throughout the first act of the film.

HARVEY DENT FOR DISTRICT ATTORNEY. I BELIEVE IN HARVEY DENT
I believe in Harvey Dent Campaign Poster

As the release date of the film was drawing closer, the microsite updated the poster to include a more vandalized version. The left half of Harvey Dent’s face was scribbled with a red marker. A black marker was used to form a crude ‘x’ over Harvey Dent’s left eye, symbolizing that he was half-dead.

This poster foreshadowed what would happen to Harvey Dent and who would cause the harm to turn him into the infamous villain. Two-Face.

"I BELIEVE IN HARVEY DENT" The only sensible way to live in this worl is without rules.
FOR DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Paid for by friends of Harvey Dent
Vandalized Version of I believe in Harvey Dent Campaign Poster

How I plan to incorporate transmedia into my blog site is simple. One of the main reasons I created this blog site (outside of the fact that it was required of me to make one for a PUB course) was that it was to be used in a way where I would be comfortable sharing my art pieces with people I don’t really know. Now, I have become a lot more comfortable showcasing my art to the public. Therefore, in the near future, I would create a dedicated account on social media platforms such as Instagram, ArtStation, and Twitter to place all of my art pieces. On these social media pages, I would post pieces that are either ‘work-in-progress’ or fully finished. Within these posts, I would place a link to my blog which would then detail more so of my process for each piece for those that are interested. On my about page on my blog site, I would place links to each of these accounts. I plan to also host exclusive content that would only be available on this blog site in order to incentivize visitors to come to visit.

The Deep Web vs. The Dark Web

[Original Post Date: 11/22/22]

The Deep Web vs the Dark Web. I never really knew that there was a difference between the two. All I knew about them was that they were a part of the internet that cannot be surfaced by regular search engines like Google or Bing. You would have to download a specialized browser that allows you to browse the dark or deep web anonymously.

In the article titled “Clearing Up Confusion – Deep Web vs. Dark Web“, the stated difference between the two different types of the web is that the dark web is a smaller portion of the deep web. The dark web is intentionally hidden due to it containing illicit content that ranges from strange to outright disturbing.

I think what really piqued my interest in the concept of the dark and deep web was from a video game titled “Welcome To The Game” parts one and two. I first heard of this game when one of my favorite YouTubers, Markiplier, did a playthrough of the game. The game revolves around you taking control of your character who is a detective tasked with discovering the location of a woman who has been kidnapped. The goal of the game is to collect these keys that are hidden throughout different websites within the dark web. Welcome to the Game has been described as a very challenging game due to how it mimics realistic scenarios. Your character must ensure that they hide their identity when using the dark web as others can track your location and kill you; game over.

Now, that’s not to say that I would go around snooping the dark web. While I understand that utilizing a specialized browser would help mask my identity and information thus making it relatively safe, if I am not careful, malicious people can track my location or find information about me easily which may lead to dangerous consequences.

Lights, Camera, Action!

For those of you who don’t know, I am a film student based out of Vancouver, BC, which is a pretty cool but expensive career path if you’re wanting to bust into the indie scene like I am. Throughout my studies and personal projects, I have made a good handful of short films by now, all of which I have had to contribute funds towards – meaning that I have had to learn how to work on a tight budget behind the scenes to make movie magic happen. There’s a lot that needs to be expensed on a film set: transportation, equipment, food, and – the most interesting part – the art department. The art department takes care of all costumes, props, and set dressing, and as someone who works as a production designer (and is passionate about it too), thrift shopping is our best friend for finding cheap but unique things to fill the frame with. 

A hand wearing an elbow-length glove adorned with big, gold rings reaches for the silver, vintage telephone sitting on the top of a small, wooden table. A small potted plant sits behind the telephone and the side of an old armchair can be seen beside the table.
Screen grab from my short film: You’re Done, Darling!

Not only are second-hand stores a more sustainable and budget-friendly source for set decorating, but thrift stores are filled with eclectic curios from any and all decades, making it a perfect match for the often unconventional needs of a film’s art department. My very first film was a silly little short about glittery cowboys duelling to the death in an epic match of ping pong, which called for brightly coloured cowboy hats, sparkly boots, and a ping pong set. Conveniently, people can and will donate nearly anything to second-hand stores, and therefore, it was surprisingly easy to get my paws on some hand-me-down cowboy gear and some old ping pong paddles. I once made a piece about a washed-up 1950’s Hollywood star getting chewed up and spit out by the modern-day media, which meant I needed some golden age gowns, shoes, pearls, and everything in-between. What once was will eventually find a temporary home in the thrift store, and there I found someone’s grandma’s Audrey Hepburn-esque wardrobe from 1952, along with a stunning silver phone.

Two girls holding hands enter a 1980s prom scene, walking into the middle of a busy dance floor. Everyone on screen is wearing fancy party attire.
Snippet from my short film: Lovers

Most recently, I made a project with some peers of mine – shot on real, physical film strips! – that opened with a 1980’s inspired prom scene. Although the balloons and red plastic cups were more of a dollar store find, the extensive wardrobe of all the partygoers was brought to life through a trip to the thrift store! 

It’s not just small, student films that use the thrift store as a core resource for the art department; some really large scale productions do as well! This past summer I worked on the set of Riverdale, and I got the chance to chat with the set decoration lead and they told me that almost all of their furniture seen on the set is second-hand! So, next time you watch your favourite movie or TV show, feel free to take a look at the actors’ costumes and the set decorations and challenge yourself to a guessing game of “was that thrifted?” (spoiler alert: it probably was). 

Colouring Clothes

For this week, I followed a patreon tutorial on how to colour in clothes. I noticed during my Arcane art style study, one of my biggest weaknesses was colouring in clothes and making sure that the texture was appropriate for the attire.

Therefore, I decided to go back to an old patreon tutorial that detailed how to colour clothes and apply the right textures ste-by-step. I found that the process of picking colours for the shadows and illuminated parts are slightly different than the colouring process for other objects. Usually, when picking colours for the shaded areas, I would adjust to a completely different hue in order to ensure that the right shade is chosen depending on the environment that dictates the colours. However, for clothes, I would only ever need adjust the shade within the hue to find the right colours. I don’t know exactly why but the artist who stated that during the patreon tutorial stated that this was true and I think the results back up that claim so I am not going to question that. I’m too tired to be asking why it works, I just see that it works and that the process for choosing the colours is simple.

At the end of the colouring tutorial, I felt more confident in my abilities to colour in clothes. So that’s a win.

Colouring Clothes study/tutorial
Clothing colouring tutorial

Arcane Artstyle Study

For this week, I decided to do an art style study on one of my favourite T.V. shows of all time, Arcane. Ever since this show came out in November of 2021, I have completely been enamoured by the art style as it was something so unique. The only animated films of recent memory that had an animation style so unique that could be comparable to Arcane were ‘The Lego Movie” from 2014 and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” from 2018. While both of these movies excelled in their animation in their own ways, I would place Arcane above all of them. Arcane somehow captured all the subtle nuances when it comes to the emotional expressions from the characters. From the eyes twitching to the eyebrows furrowing, these subtle nuances helped make the characters feel more real and believable, as if they were actually alive.

Anyways, that’s enough gushing about the show. I could go on but I wouldn’t want to subject you to that kind of boredom.

I decided to do a painting of a shot of one of favourite characters from the show, Jinx. This piece took me over 8 hours to complete which was a little more than average. What took me the longest was figuring out the lighting and textures on the skin and clothes. It took me a while to find the right colours to match the ambience of the scene.

I think doing one of these studies has allowed for me to appreciate the art style more. While doing this art style study, I picked a lot of little details that I have missed in my initial binge of the series such as the textures on the clothes, the texture of the hair, and the lighting. Now looking back at scenes and noticing these details, I can appreciate the amount of care and details that went into each frame.

Jinx - Arcane Art Style Study
Arcane art style study

Mini-Assignment #5: An Infographic About Me

[Original Post Date: 11/15/22]

For this mini-assignment, we were tasked to design an infographic that summarizes one’s online self. Therefore, I decided to visualize my levels of stress throughout the entire Fall semester of 2022 in the form of a bar graph.

As you can see, the amount of stress sky-rocketed above 100% from mid-November to early December due to the number of assignments, projects, and deadlines. And I think it’s still going up. 🙁

Line graph that showcases the level of stress (in percentage) over the months of August to December

Why Deep Fakes Are Both Amazing and Terrifying

[Original Post Date: 11/1/22]

In one of the readings titled ‘Here’s How Worried You Should Be About Those Tom Cruise Deepfakes’, Vice News author David Gilbert writes about a viral video on Twitter of a guy imitating Tom Cruise. However this video doesn’t just showcase some guy doing some half-assed impression of Tom Cruise by exuding his mannerisms and voice. The guy doing the impression is using AI technology to place Tom Cruise’s face on his. This type of process is called a ‘deep fake’. What the AI is essentially doing is mapping out Tom Cruise’s face using either the images that are given to it by the user or scanning the internet (cause there’s a lot of pictures of Tom Cruise’s face on the internet) while simultaneously scanning the face that its going to place Tom Cruise face on. The images that are being scanned look for details involved whenever one person is expressing a certain emotion (think of wrinkles around the eyes when one is genuinely smiling) and banking that information. Therefore, when the original face is expressing an emotion, the AI knows what details to place and for the most part, it does a pretty good job.

I think this type of technology is interesting but certainly terrifying. In this day in age where misinformation and disinformation spreads quickly across social media platforms, this type of technology can cause chaos and panic. Anyone with the knowledge and capacity to use deepfakes can essentially imitate anyone, especially people with power such as politicians. Furthermore, if that person has the same body type and hairstyle as the person they are imitating, deep fakes would be even harder to spot. With deep fakes now, people would know what is a deep fake if they know what they are looking for but with average viewers, they may not be able to tell. With AI getting better with each day that passes, it is going to be difficulty for both average and knowledgeable viewers to determine what is real or fake.

(Grammar) Check Me Out

Don’t you hate it when you write a fantastically persuasive essay, just to realize after submitting it that you made a spelling mitsake? Uh… I mean, mistake… whoops. That’s exactly what I have been trying to focus on lately: having correct spelling and grammar in my blog posts. I’d like to believe that I’m usually pretty good at keeping my written work properly formatted and proofread enough to make my high school English teacher proud (shoutout to Ms. Krzus), but accidents definitely can and will happen – I am human, you know! 

Having no spelling or grammatical errors in your content postings is important for various reasons, no matter how casual the language you use with your audience. For starters, it helps for your readers to take what you have to say more seriously, because typos don’t give off trustworthy vibes. Furthermore, if you are trying to get a point across but no one can understand what you are trying to say because there are grammatical errors in your explanation, you lose any and all power of what you have to say because it can’t be properly interpreted. If you guys can’t understand what I’m saying, then why should I even bother going to all this work to publish it? 

No matter how jumbled and messy my internal thoughts are, what I put out as content on my site should be neat and organized, but I definitely need some help to get to that point. To start, I’ll read over my typed out work in Google Docs, then use Docs’ built-in grammar/spell check as my second pair of digital eyes. If my work makes it past that step, then I’ll copy and paste that bad boy into writer.com, a free grammar check site that has never done me wrong… well, that might be an over-exaggeration. Writer.com is perhaps a little over-sensitive, and uses American English as opposed to my Canadian English writing. This just means I have to be on my toes and tell the site to chill out every time it thinks that my “colour” or “neighbour” has an extra “u,” but that’s easy! Copy and paste all that text one last time into my website and bingo, we have a properly proof-read post…I hope.

While playing around with WordPress and all the nifty tools that it has to offer, I stumbled upon a proof-reading plug-in claiming to solve all my grammatical woes with one quick installation. Naturally, I hit download on that sucker and gave it a go, but I’m not totally convinced on its efficiency. It takes a little longer to scan through my work than I’m used to, and it’s not that I have no patience, but with finals season coming around the bend here, I don’t exactly have time to sit and watch some AI judge my spelling at a speed comparable to molasses in winter. Not having to bounce back and forth through tabs of copy and pasting is nice, but I think I’ll just stick to my trusty writer.com.

Review of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

It has taken me a while to write a review of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022) because I find myself getting stuck on what I want to say. I watched the film opening day on November 11, and instantly thought it was such a deep and culturally impactful film. Most times I can formulate my thoughts on a movie and convey them with ease. However, with Wakanda Forever, there is an immense number of layers and weight that surround the film as a whole.

Being a sequel to the critically acclaimed Black Panther (2016), the movie needs to effectively build on the last film and evolve the world of Wakanda and its lively characters, while also managing to live up to the massive expectation put in place by the last installment.

Furthermore, Wakanda Forever must also fit within the ever-expanding Marvel Cinematic Universe, that has started to become more and more critiqued post Avengers: Endgame (2019). Most fans seem to be unsatisfied with many of the newer MCU films and television series. While I agree with many of the critiques regarding the MCU formula growing stagnant and stale, I find many of these people who are critiquing Phase 4 of the MCU to perpetuate hateful ideologies. For instance, it seems many of these “fans” that hate She-Hulk (2022) and Ms. Marvel (2022) are actually just toxic men who are irrationally angry and criticize the show for baseless reasons. This increase in toxicity within the MCU fandom discourse has bleed into Wakanda Forever. Much of this toxic hate stems from problematic views surrounding underrepresented minority groups such as the LGBTQIA2S+ community, women, and people of colour. Therefore, a film like Wakanda Forever, that prominently features each of these communities will be targeted with unwarranted hate.

Additionally, amid the challenges COVID-19 presented to the film industry, Wakanda Forever also had to navigate through controversy surrounding lead actress Letitia Wright’s alleged anti-vax position.

And finally, the heartbreaking passing of Chadwick Boseman who played King T’Challa, the Black Panther deeply impacted the production of this film. Originally, the movie was written around Boseman and his depiction of the Black Panther. But, after Boseman’s tragic death, Ryan Coogler, the writer and director of Wakanda Forever had to completely rework the film to pay tribute to Chadwick Boseman, and address the absence of T’Challa from the story.

Personally, all these factors wrapped Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022) in layers of complications that had me worried. However, I am greatly happy to say that this film not only lives up to the first film, but in my opinion surpasses it.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022) is able to achieve this by continuing to explore many of the themes that underlie Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Most, if not all of Phase 4 has been touching on the grief that many characters possess because of the personal losses they experience (ie: Wanda Maximoff in WandaVision, Peter Parker in Spider-Man: No Way Home), the pressure a superhero legacy inflicts on the individual (ie: Sam Wilson in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier), and shared trauma within a community (ie: Ms. Marvel and She-Hulk). Wakanda Forever, thematically explores each of these elements. This is on display in the profound conversations the main antagonist Namor, played by Tenoch Huerta Mejía has with other characters. Namor can serve as a foil to our heroes while also challenging their beliefs around grief, legacy, and shared trauma, which solidifies him as one of the best antagonists in an MCU film. This exploration of themes the MCU explored in Phase 4 makes Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022) a beautiful conclusion to this chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

This film also features some of the most breathtaking visuals and settings in the MCU. Since audiences were introduced to Wakanda in the first movie, it has gone on to become an important cultural moment in film history. Practically everyone knows the “Wakanda Forever” salute. And many people can now recognize the iconography of Wakanda. With all this in mind, it was absolutely amazing to witness the sequel able to effectively deepen audiences’ connection to Wakanda by exploring more of their culture. Moreover, this film introduces a whole separate culture with the underwater kingdom of Talokan, and their radical leader Namor. Their society and culture are given an immense amount of development which strengthens these two warring nations conflict.

This film was essentially a tribute to Chadwick Boseman, and the palpable sense of loss the black community, MCU fans, and his friends and family experienced. Therefore, the cast had to provide some of the most powerful performances I have ever seen. The character interaction between Letitia Wright as Princess Shuri, Danai Gurira as Okoye, Lupita Nyong’o as Nakia, Winston Duke as M’Baku, Dominique Thorne as Riri Williams, Tenoch Huerta Mejía as Namor, and Angela Bassett as Queen Ramonda were all massive highlights.

Overall, the film was brilliant! Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022) had the impossible task of making a movie that could live up to the legacy of Chadwick Boseman. I personally thought that the cast and crew did a fantastic job, and I loved every second of the movie.

Design Critiques on YouTube

[Original Post Date: 10/25/22]

Link to Website: https://www.youtube.com/

After learning about best design practices from our guest presenter, Mauvé Page, I decided to take her lessons and conduct a small design evaluation on a website.

Therefore, I decided to do a quick basic design evaluation on YouTube’s user interface as it is a website I frequent.

Screenshot of YouTube's homepage
Screenshot of YouTube’s Homepage

I first took a look at the contrast and saw that YouTube uses a dark grey background with light grey for all of the text elements. The contrast between the background and the text makes it so that viewers will have an easier time reading the necessary information related to the video at a quick glance.

An example would be as shown within the video underneath where the text elements denote the information of the video such as the title, the uploader, the number of views, and when it was uploaded. Viewers would be able to quickly glance at the text and discern the information being conveyed easily.

Furthermore, the font weight chosen helps establish a hierarchical order. Thicker font weights call for more attention than thinner font weights as they take up more space and are wider, creating more contrast with the background than thinner font weights. Therefore, using thicker weights for the title elements I think was a smart choice by the design team at YouTube. It also helps me discern which text element I should read first, which was the title of the video. For the rest of the test elements, a thinner font weight was used throughout, thus establishing the order to be read from top to bottom.

To add to that, close proximity was used effectively with all of the elements of the video including the images. Due to how all of the elements could be defined in one square, the images and the text elements are associated as one item on YouTube’s homepage. None of the text elements or images overflowed into other video items, thereby eliminating potential confusion as to what text elements belong to what video item.

Screenshot of Markiplier's video titled 'drowning... | RAFT"
Screenshot of Markiplier’s video titled ‘drowning… | RAFT”

Thrifty Holiday ASMR

It’s the holiday season, and here at iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com we are deciding to keep it fresh by providing you with a podcast inspired by ASMR.

“ASMR stands for autonomous sensory meridian response; a term used to describe a tingling, static-like, or goosebumps sensation in response to specific triggering audio or visual stimuli.”

https://www.nebraskamed.com/

With a very special guest, Haley Dustan (my partner), join us as we recount our experiences with giving and receiving thrifted gifts!

In Summation

Process Post 12

Throughout the entirety of this course, I feel as though I have been very lucky to get to work on a passion project of mine while also working towards a potential future career. I’ve enjoyed the process of getting to sit down and actually write out these posts, though it took me a while to get into the swing of things. You never really realize how much work goes into something until you actually give it a shot yourself. I certainly have a newfound appreciation for all the cooking blogs I mercilessly scrolled through in the past, wondering why they haven’t posted anything in six months. I know that I had it easy, given the fact that I’ve been posting tried and true recipes that have been handed down through my family. Even then, I wasn’t able to get something up every single week like I had wanted to at the beginning. I also think that being able to have an independent, online space for me to work through my personal musings has been incredibly helpful. I didn’t realize how much of my experience with online spaces involved being saturated with targeted content and algorithms until I took a step away from it to create a digital garden space of my own.

Furthermore, I’ve really appreciated getting to learn about each individual aspect that goes into running a website. From the ground up, how business construct their sites can make or break the reach that they might attain. Using keywords, SEO, ads, and looking up the name of your website before settling on a domain are all key parts of making sure that you’re going to be recognized based on what you actually want to represent in your work. Ads themselves are an entirely different ball game, it was incredibly interesting to see a little of the process of how ads come to be and the thought processes behind them. Additionally, I’ve gained so much more experience with running a site through WordPress, and I’m very happy to have re-familiarized myself with the tools given the fact that I will be working with them again next semester in my co-op position.

PUB 101 has been a wonderful class overall, I’ve gained a lot of valuable knowledge and insight on how to best present myself online, and represent the versions of myself I want to be visible. I really enjoyed running Considering Cardamom this semester, and while I know that it will be difficult for me to continue to run the site while in school, I wouldn’t mind having the opportunity to come back to it every now and again to pick up where I left off.

Wait a Minute…Who are YOU?

All this chit-chat of how MY website is going, and what I want out of this blog… well, enough about me, let’s talk about you! Yes, you, my lovely lovely audience – or what I imagine you to be like – if there’s anyone out there at all. Now that I have really started to develop my cozy little space here at I Wear Your Grandad’s Clothes, it’s important to take some time to reflect on exactly who my target public is, how I am actively catering to that demographic, and how I can make my content more inviting to viewers.

Ideally, I would like my website to appeal to a wide audience made up of many different demographics, all with the common interest of environmental activism and fashion. To be totally realistic, iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com does cater more towards a younger crown – probably ages sixteen through thirty – based on the sort of fashion inspiration that I can provide as a young adult myself. The “fun” language that I use is relatively casual, and probably most appealing to that late Gen-Z to early Millennial crowd. However, I do try to make my writing and content family-friendly and easy (enough) to read so that younger teens are more than welcome around here! On the other side of the spectrum, I use a lot of vintage and retro imagery to keep my aesthetic afloat, so perhaps that possible nostalgia can engage the older generations. Thrift shopping in the name of sustainability and looking good has no age limit, and I’d love to reach as many people’s screens as possible. 

With that, I just added a new feature of having an accessibility toolbar to the domain, so hopefully this ensures that everyone who is interested in my content is able to access it. I would hate to exclude anyone from being part of the community, and I will continue to actively better myself and iwearyourgrandadsclothes.com to be inclusive to those in need of digital assistance.

Do you have a suggestion on how I can make I Wear Your Grandad’s Clothes more inclusive or accessible? Feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll be sure to give it a read. Don’t be shy, I won’t bite!