Reflection #2 MASHUP


This mashup is based on student education rights in local schools. More times than not, schools are these places where children go to act like zombies then robots for eight hours straight. They are told what to do and where to go every single day. I made this video because as a future teacher, it’s very important that student’s get a say in what they are learning, when they are learning it, and how they are learning it. School can be a very fun, active, upbeat place if we allow it.

Throughout the video I have a mime and robots. They are symbolic of the students. This represents their voice being taken away. From McIntosh’s article, “A History of subversive remix video before YouTube: Thirty political video mashups made between World War II and 2005”, he states on what a remix video is should include, “Works comment on, deconstruct, or challenge media narratives, dominant myths, social norms, and traditional power structures—they can be either sympathetic to or antagonistic to their pop culture sources, sometimes both at the same time.” Within my video, I wanted to challenge the social norms of schools in our society and comment on what can be done better.

Semiotics Theory is found through out my mashup video. Everytime that I gave some meaning and applied it to my topic of student education rights, I used semiotics theory. For example, the soldiers in my mashup. Soldiers are not an exact reference to students, schools, or education. So I had to use semiotics to give it meaning and refer them to education rights. I used clips of soldiers to symbolize the students. The student’s are working really hard, and sometimes at the end of the day they might just get “shot”, but they want their education, (freedom) so they will continue to work for it.

I remixed and mashed several different videos to make it one solid combination. In several videos, their are students standing up, standing on their desks, speaking up, and for example in the Freedom Writers piece, he is standing among his classmates and teacher and speaking up what he believes in. Mashing several of these video clips together made the viewer get a better understanding that I’m trying to convey the fact that students’ have a voice and it NEEDS to be used.

Right before the end there is a montage of robots falling down, protesters, soldiers, and the mime being stuck. But then more towards the finale of my video, the girl from American Idol is bolting out those notes, again representing voice and rights students have. I mixed these clips all up together to create a montage of flipping back and forth to show the extremities of this issue.

I edited things precisely so the viewer could get a full understanding without being bored to death. When the clips are kept short and really mashed well, for example, the part towards the end when it is going back and forth between having a voice being heard and not at all, it captures the viewers attention of this problem.

This was a really fun way to express an issue and challenge the social norms and laws being held today. It was difficult creating the video, but many benefits. I feel I got a much better understanding of semiotics in full and of course remix and mashup.


Hope you all enjoyed my video!



Video Mashup Reflection 1


Video 16/80

One might think that studying and composing video remixes has nothing to do with being a writer, but in fact, writers demonstrate the same concepts as a video remix composer. I think writing and video composing are both considered art and can be analyzed in that category, instead of separating them.

From the video, “Everything is a remix”, it says “yet these techniques collecting material, combining it and forming it are the same ones you use at any level of creation.”  I completely agree with this thought. When creating a video remix, you use an already developed video, but are still forming your own original ideas to generate new meaning. When writing, you be using an idea or thought from someone else and editing or expanding it. Or you may be creating a completely new idea. It’s all a form of art which is why studying and composing video remixes could be very valuable for a writer.

Kim Middleton states in her article, Remix Video and the Crisis of Humanities, “Remix video is not the answer to the crises of the humanities; rather, the recognition of a common set of practices, skills, and values underpinning scholars and video practitioners’ work provides the basis for a coalitional approach: identification of shared opportunities to promote and engage potential participants in the modes of thinking and production that contend with complex cultural ideas.”  She labels that it as the “recognition of a common set of practices, skills and values” and not only that, but also says they make products with complex cultural ideas in mind. Writers are often writing about cultural ideas, current events, what is wrong and right today in the world, and this is exactly what video remix composers are doing. This is another reason why writers could learn valuable lessons from media remixes.

One last reason why writers could learn valuable lessons from video composers is because of history. Video remixes are not just horror movies recreated into comedies. They are so much more than that. They discuss topics happening now, but more importantly, history. In Jonathan McIntosh article, A history of subversive remix video before YouTube: Thirty political video mashups made between World War II and 2005, he states, “These transformative works, by their very nature, are suspicious of and challenge political, corporate, media, and social power structures. They focus on a wide array of issues, including race, gender, sexuality, and economics, in addition to more overtly political topics of government, public policy, and warfare.” There are several political video mashups out there that contain a great foundation for studying history. It will be a great way for writers and authors to become better writers by giving them a visual to help them better understand a time period or even daily current events.

In conclusion, writers could learn valuable lessons from video composers, and I also believe video composers could learn valuable lessons from writers. Now that some studies suggest media as a negative outlook, I vary my thoughts on media. I have thought writing would actually be the better alternative, but all in all, video composers are doing the same routines as a writer would and I think they both are very powerful.








Photo Essay: Domestic Violence Final Copy

Introduction of Images

When trying to develop and express a message to an audience, writers have a formula in mind. While creating my photo essay, I created a formula that consists of time sequence, theme, ideas, and location/background. I used these individually, but making sure they interlink together. My overall theme displayed through my photos is domestic violence.

Themes are really important when trying to express an idea, validate a point, or get a message across. Along with showing images of variations of domestic violence raw, I showed images of the aftermath. Not exactly images of the physical aftermath, for example, bruises and black eyes, but more of the mental and emotional effects it causes. I also showed symbolic images of the power someone has over you, and showed metaphors of power and outlets/escapes as well. Since I wanted to show domestic violence raw, and then the aftermath, time sequence for my images was a key to developing my photo essay.

The time sequence starts off right away with screaming and yelling, which doesn’t exactly scream abusive relationship, but that’s why it was important for my images to progress. The following image is a standing male over a woman shouting at her. The woman is sitting and covering her face seeming scared of him. Following that image, there is the same woman sitting sunken in with a males hand over her mouth, representing power and dominance. The next image is the same thing, but this time the woman is sitting more straight up, and is trying to pull the hand away. The last few images are of the woman sitting there distraught, tired, scared, confused, angry, and plain miserable.

You can clearly see the struggle that she is going through, but more importantly you feel for her. I wanted my audience to connect with my images, not just by me pulling on their heart strings, and not necessarily connecting directly. I don’t expect them to know what the pain from an abusive relationship is like, but that’s not my main point. My main point is for them to be able to draw connections and know it’s a daily struggle. Domestic violence is something that was happening yesterday, today, and will continue happening in the future unless the silence is broken.








This picture I took and also tweeted for our class, but then I got to thinking. Signs are really everywhere we look. They are always surrounding us giving us messages we need to know. Us humans give these signs meaning, but to us, most of them only have one meaning. When we see them, we immediately think of one thing. For example, in my picture, the wheelchair on the reserved parking sign we automatically think handicapped.

Chapter One of “This Means This, This Means That” by Sean Hall. Chapter One discusses signs and signing. The seminal figure, Charles Sanders Pierce states, “signs had three elements: the representamen, the interpretant and the object. We call these things the sign vehicle, a sense or meaning and a reference. (p. 22).

So, the definition of semiotics is conveying a message through a symbol or an image that has multiple meanings. In this image in my tweet, there is the sign with the wheelchair on it. The words say “Reserved Parking”. So there is a signifier, the signify, and the message. So Here the signifer is the wheelchair picture on the sign, the signify is that that means disabled in some way, and the message is that only persons with disabilities and also proven disabilities, are allowed to park in this specified spot.


We know a lot more then we think we know, and although this seems like easy stuff, and of course you know what something means when you see it, it can be tricky. Like in our mashup videos, we had to come up with a lot of metaphors. Sometimes the metaphor aren’t exactly the most clear to decipher, but that’s what makes it fun. 🙂



Judging Imagery

juding imagery pic 1


Something we do all the time is judge an image. No, I don’t mean judge a book by it’s cover type of thing. I mean literally judge an image. We all do it. We judge other people’s personal photos on them on social media, and also not of them specifically, but what they post.




Sean Hall says, “Semantic units are discrete items of communication that have actual and potential meanings.”  So the image itself has actual meaning, but we analyze it and give it potential different meanings. That’s up to our judgment. We always ask subconsciously “what does this mean?” Hall also states, “With images, the issue is more difficult. A painting can have brush-marks, lines, tones, textures, colours and different parts, all of which can be identified as meaningful- of course the picture as a whole has meaning too.


Photo Dec 02, 00 39 09


In this image, the outlet could behind the woman could’ve just been there. Or the photographer wanted to it there for purpose. Some symbolic representation, but of what? It could represent power, since it is a power outlet, and the other person’s hand is covering this woman’s mouth, making her powerless. Or the outlet could represent an outlet, as in there’s always an outlet, or an escape. There’s always another route for you.  The photographer had an idea in mind, perhaps, but in the end we judge the image and create the meaning.

Sean Hall states, “Literal meanings are important when we need to communicate something clearly and unambiguously. I agree with him. Literal meanings are important, but we are constantly giving things our own meanings.



Our interpretations of images is what we’re left with. At the end of the day, it’s not about what the photographer, writer or creator wanted to portray, its what we make of it. Sometimes, they want us to give it meaning, but other times they give it meaning. Sometimes the audience misses out on the meaning, or maybe they get the actual meaning, but give it more meanings.



Body Art or Body Damage?

My mashup topic is tattoos. People have them, people love them, people hate them, people will rant about them, people like some, dislike others. What is it about tattoos that cause people to love or hate them? Why are people not understanding and accepting of them? Are they really that bad? Are they a form of art? Do they cause damage to your bodies? Do they take away from your body? Should humans stay the way they were created? Or is your body a wonderwall waiting for your creations to be added?

I will show all different views of the grey area of tattoos. The opinions of them, the meanings behind them, reasons why people get them, and why others are so against them.