Friday, April 29, 2011

And My FAVORITE! Personal Video

Further and Beyond

The personal video was my favorite video to make. Being the third video I made, I had had more practice with working with Imovie. So, it was a lot easier to make and because this was my own experience I was so excited to share with others the things I have learned here culturally, educationally, and personally. I used Spain’s motto “Mas Alla” because it was most appropriate for my life here in Barcelona. “Mas Alla” means “further beyond”.  While studying abroad I have gone “further and beyond” any other experience in my life. I have seen things that I never thought I would get the opportunity to see. I have completely immersed myself within a different culture. I have eaten some of the most delicious meals ever set before me. And I have met people who have inspired me, touched me on a personal level, and have opened my eyes to new and different perspectives about life. There are honestly, no words that can completely describe the feelings I have felt throughout my journey, nor the things that I have experienced. Like I mention in my video, there aren’t any pictures that can completely capture the memories made. “Further Beyond” briefly shares my story abroad and what it has meant to me. 

Provided is the link to my youtube video for this project.
And that is all folks! 

Culture Issue

Catalan is “Not” Spain?
This video was inspired by my personal experience with the Catalan culture. Naturally, having to adapt to a new way of life was going to be a challenge. Having to adapt to the Catalan culture though, seemed even more challenging than expected. One, I am from the south and getting used to the fast pace lifestyle of a big city was an experience in itself. Everyone is always on the go, people keep to themselves, and they don’t seem nearly as friendly. Two, I had to get used to my inability to communicate well with others. Asking for directions and getting around the city was not so difficult, but trying to ask for the things I wanted and/or needed at times seemed impossible -- they don’t have Wal-Mart’s, and targets, and just your normal general stores that I am used to. Every store here serves a particular purpose. For example, the grocery stores are simply just for groceries. At home grocery stores also sell toothbrushes, toothpaste, makeup, deodorant, and other everyday necessities. So in order to get these items I had to go to another store. And three, I had to get used to being the minority. I found out the hard way that Catalans take great pride in their culture because of their fight to restore it after Franco got rid of Catalan. People were very rude, and especially to Americans. They were short when talking to us. When we tried to speak to them in Spanish they would immediately switch to English, and this eventually became insulting. They would even charge us extra at restaurants because they knew we didn’t know better. Finally, after asking my teacher about the issue, I found out that Catalans believe that Americans are here in Barcelona just to have fun. They don’t think we appreciate their language or culture and that we are intruding on their lifestyle.
Every day I am constantly judged for being an American, and that is all so new to me. Usually, it is the other way around – it was interesting to see how it felt to be a minority. This is why I chose this topic.
This was my second project that I attacked and by this point my video making skills had improved just a little bit, but I was definitely more confident in completing this task. Since this was a cultural issue, overtly I felt it necessary to show my perspective of Catalan. I did this video similar to that of a documentary because it was a more formal issue.  I included pictures that I have taken here all throughout my experience and included personal stories to make the video seem more real.
I like the product of this project, however there is still a part of me that wishes I could have shown my audience exactly how the Catalans have treated us Americans by including some conversations I have had or even just by filming a casual walk down the street. I know this would have been difficult to do because the only way you can truly understand the problem is by experiencing it. I will admit that I may be exaggerating a little about how “bad” Catalans are, but it is an issue that I have constantly dealt with and I hope others will be able to better understand the issue. 

The Finale

Here they are! My final projects! I hope you all enjoy :o)

Professional Video

Different People, Different Tongues
“Different People, Different Tongues” was inspired by the various perspectives I gained here in Barcelona, about being bilingual and even multilingual. As Americans we are never forced to speak a different language other than English, therefore learning another language has never been a priority. However, after talking to my new friends who come from all over Europe, I learned that it seems almost necessary to speak other languages. Due to their culture backgrounds and educational experiences they have learned that being bilingual offers greater opportunities. What I have also understood from speaking to them about languages is not only will being bilingual greatly benefit them on a professional level but also on a social level --this ability enables them to confidently meet others of different backgrounds. Also, people living all over Europe seem to encounter different cultural backgrounds every day, which is not as common in America. This is why most Europeans perceive Americans as “ignorant” because we show no interest in other cultures other than our own. Personally, being bilingual will help in my field of study (English with an emphasis in writing and public relations) because I hope to work for a company internationally, and Spanish is one of the most spoken languages globally.
This video was my first attempt at completing these projects. I had written down all my ideas, wrote out what I was going to say, and had all my interviews planned out exactly how I wanted them. When it came time to actually piece this thing together, all my plans fell through. I realized this was going to be a bigger challenge then I thought. At first I was going to do several interviews, and have each one of my friends say “hello” in their primary language and then incorporate the rest of the interviews with each other throughout the rest of the video. However, I quickly learned that my skills at cutting/trimming film was not up to par for this idea so I had to completely rethink what to do. I thought back to the Social Revolution video I had posted on my blog earlier in the semester and figured statistics about languages would be interesting! Also, since my multiple interviews did not seem to work for me I stuck with one – the one that had the most influence on my views about this topic. Alex’s perspective about being bilingual is bias but I believe is one that Americans should really consider -- we do have a limited perspective about learning another language and/or culture.
This video was my “trial and error” video with cutting, trimming, doing voiceovers, putting in music, transitions and actually getting the music to go with each particular idea. The point I wanted to make in this video was made, but not nearly as effectively as I had hoped. I wish my video making skills were grade A, but I have done the best I could with what I know.