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Re: [teacherartexchange] tech and art/ new comment

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From: Jen Ellis (just.jen.ellis_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Wed Aug 02 2006 - 16:05:48 PDT


Hello Everyone-

I am not a "teacher" in the sense I have a teaching degree or have a
classroom, but I wanted to join this discussion as a I have a
background in Technology/Art and work in Continuing Education. I am
currently working for a large hospital system doing Online Interactive
Education. I am a recent college graduate (2004) with a BFA-Digital
Arts degree. I thought maybe my background can add an interesting
twist to this thread.

I can say that we are as Artist's in this "new media" age that the
industry and schooling is in a constant mode of change, and yes as
educators its a struggle to catch up. Six years ago I learned how to
use Photoshop 6 and now we are 3 versions later, with new tools and
possibilites we never thought possible.

I will have to say that as an art student I was always interested in
new technologies, but trying to learn it! No one knew anything! I felt
that my classes were just watching the teacher struggle with the
software. During my sophomore year, my friends and I got a group
together who developed an expertise on certain subjects and one day a
week we would conduct a seminar on that topic. (free but of course!)
It was the only way I felt I would obtain enough knowledge to get a
job in my field.

To be an Artist today, there is more expected of you. You need to be a
graphic designer and make your own business cards, you need to be a
photographer, and a digital artist, to capture and touch up your
images of work, you need to be a web designer to market your work.
Roles are expanding. More is expected of you. How can you compete with
that sculptor in China who has a million blog subscribers if you can't
even make a PDF of your work to email to a friend?

Education is changing. You have to be "cool" "hip" and "flashy". My
job is to go through a boring question and answer test or a long
newsletter, and make it interactive. Create games, movies, animations,
creative ways of presenting the information. Otherwise, my doctors
will go elsewhere to receive their credits. Webcasting/Podcasting are
now becoming the norm if you can't make a class. Blogs and chatrooms
are becoming ways of sharing information. I had one computer science
teacher that gave us his instant message name so we could contact him
with questions. We would get an instant answer. This is the "now"
generation. The age of convenience. They want their answers and faster
than they can ask the next one. If you don't already, you will
probably need to have a working web site for your class. I could see
you doing a live broadcast with other countries across the world!
Creating a Camtasia presentation of an instruction guide for a new
software. Have your students create their own web pages and abstract
animations. Digital cameras will bring photography back into the low
budget classroom since you no longer need that expensive printing
equipment. What about each student logging into their custom art
website? Where they have custom assignments tailored to their likes,
dislikes, level of difficulty, medium, etc. And no more powerpoint!
(sorry to say, but this is on the outs folks! not good enough
anymore!)

Ok that's all for now. Take Care-

Jen
Interactive Multimedia Artist
Cleveland, OH

And yes, my job didn't exist a year ago. My degree didn't exist 6 years ago.

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