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Request for Sabbatical
Goals and Objectives
I'd like to take a year to study and explore the art and science of digital media. As Media Specialist my clients rely on both my design and technical skills. At this point in my career I need time to expand as an artist and to develop additional strategies and techniques for planning, producing, storing and distributing digital media. The field is moving rapidly. New technologies and software are being invented at a mind boggling rate. Under pressure to produce multiple projects on tight timelines it is very difficult to keep up. I need time to explore methods and tools in depth. I also need to reflect on how these alternative methods and techniques can be used to enhance what we do to produce materials more efficiently.
My goals and objectives for the year are:
During the year I plan to do the following activities:
Note: The items listed here are current examples. This field changes rapidly. A year from now new versions and additional technologies will need to be added to these lists.
This sabbatical will give me the opportunity to grow both personally and professionally. I have been involved in the creative arts all of my life. I started painting and drawing at the age of 4 and I got my first camera at the age of 5. I began piano lessons at age 8 and picked up my first movie camera at 9. I am very excited by the prospect of spending a year exploring each of the media I love. The new skills and insights I will gain will be invaluable and will revitalize my role as media specialist.
Change has been a constant in our department for the last 20 years. The recent digital revolution in all media has been both a blessing and a challenge. We now have powerful new tools to create compelling content, but we barely have time to learn to use them before something new comes along. This sabbatical will give me the time to explore each media and its unique tools and methods in depth. I will share this knowledge with my colleagues in the department and will incorporate what I learn into the workshops and classes that I teach.
Chemeketa is a leader in using technology in teaching and learning. We started using television to bring courses to our outreach campuses in 1985. Our online instruction has doubled every year since we started offering courses in 1989. Our new technology labs and classrooms are used as models for other college's and universities. Our expertise in using technology to foster active, student-centered learning is sought out by other institutions. The information gained during this sabbatical will advance our knowledge in all of these areas and will help retain Chemeketa's solid reputation as a creative and innovative institution.
Applicant background and length of service
I have worked for the college as a Media Specialist for nearly 25 years. I have helped hundreds of clients develop thousands of projects in a wide variety of media including photography, graphic design, sound recordings, slideshows, live and prerecorded television, computer presentations, CD-ROMs, computer programs, and websites. I am known for my creative and innovative approaches to solving instructional needs. I work with online instructors to develop web based learning environments and I also work with instructors to enhance presentations in our high tech classrooms. Every term I offer a series of staff workshops in graphics for Web and Presentations and Multimedia. I have taught Web Photography online for nearly three years. I also teach Web Graphics I and II, Web Design, and Painter. I have served for a long time as a member (and at times chair) of the Academic Technology Committee. I consult with other educational institutions throughout the state and nation and I regularly present at national and international conferences.
Relationship to previous sabbatical
I took a sabbatical 16 years ago (during the academic year 1984-1985). This current proposal is not intended to link to that previous sabbatical as the time between the two is too great.
Understanding of Ownership
Any creative works such as journals, photographs, illustrations, sound recordings, music, or video developed during the year and used as examples or demonstrations will remain the sole property of the producer. Any templates, instructions, directions or other instructional materials will be jointly owned by the instructor and the college.
Sabbatical Request Addendum
The purpose of each experiment, example, and demonstration project will be to explore and refine the techniques and methods used in each of the media - photography, illustration, sound recording and video. My intent is to do many experiments, studies and trial pieces rather than a few fully realized finished works. The projects will be a record of the process and will be comparisons between a variety of techniques and between traditional media and digital media. Although I will attempt to be as specific as possible here, it is important to remain open to the possibilities which arise during the course of research and the creative process. Actual subjects and areas of investigation may vary.
Projects will address three important general questions:
Areas of investigation will include:
Examples will draw upon my long standing interests in portraits, landscapes
and natural objects such as flowers and shells. Some studies will be
printed to paper for comparisons. Others will be collected into Web
or CD-ROM galleries or albums.
Areas of investigation will include:
Examples will include line drawings, diagrams, sequential illustrations, and animations. Studies will be printed to paper and placed on web pages and sample PowerPoint slides.
Projects will include:
Samples of converting existing recordings to digital will be drawn from family recordings. Samples of sound editing, manipulation and mixing will be demonstrated on CD-Audio, MP3, QuickTime, RealAudio, and Windows Media.
Areas of investigation will include:
Samples of video will be drawn from family videos or will be short
scenes from nature set to music or narrative such as studies of wave
action, flight, or other motion studies or time lapse sequences.
Introduction to Computer Illustration ART239 is offered at Chemeketa as a 3 credit 10 week course and is taught by John Bolesky typically at night Winter or Spring term in the Visual Communications lab. Course description: Learn the basics of computer illustration using Freehand and Photoshop. Scan original images for use in digital illustrations, develop concepts and imagery, develop your techniques in color illustration.
Flash 1 and 2 VC100 is offered at Chemeketa as two 1 credit 5 week classes and is taught by Wayne Knowles at night in the Visual Communications lab. Course description: Learn to create vector based web graphics for animation and interactivity.
Digital Black and White Photography is a Rocky Mountain School of Photography workshop offered October 6-12. Course description: In this class, you explore what its like to combine contemporary digital tools with traditional darkroom techniques and produce fine quality black & white prints. Youll print your existing negatives both in the darkroom and on the computer and see what happens. Youll use the computer to produce high quality digital negatives for contact prints.
Youll create high quality contrast and color masks on the computer, print them on inkjet photo printers and use them in the darkroom to create fine prints. Youll also reproduce a variety of traditional darkroom techniques on the computer and discuss the implications for technical and artistic results. Finally, youll investigate various types of digital fine prints for the black & white photographer, including archival quadtone inks and modern inkjet photo printers. The workshop begins on Saturday evening at 5pm and ends on Friday afternoon.
Streaming RealAudio & RealVideo on the Web CEU 9608 , CEUs: 4-Online class offered at Portland Community College. Course description: Learn techniques of capturing, editing and presenting streaming audio and video content to make your website come alive. Learn to synchronize presentations, do live broadcasts and set up RealServer.
2001 James D. Blodget