“What I Learned 3D Printing My Own BB-8” Discussion

I wrote the following passage near the beginning of the semester and I’m pleased at how relevant the content remains (though my excitement over The Force Awakens has waned heavily)…

Having seen the new Star Wars movie twice since its release, I cannot help but be drawn to all things Star Wars. Prior to this film, I had never been a particularly big fan. I grew up with the subpar prequels and I always thought the original trilogy was good, but had aspirations beyond the technology of the time. The Force Awakens was a grand slam.

Back to the article … It’s very image-heavy, which is atypical of all of the writing I’ve done far, but with a recently discovered interest in photography, may very well be my go-to for writing in the future. There’s something very inspiring about reading/viewing this sort of piece. For one, it reads much more quickly than a text-heavy piece. I mean, for all intents and purposes, it’s a picture book for adults. Also, because it reads quickly, I felt as though I had accomplished much more than if I read an all-text piece in the same time.

The art of writing such an article comes not from creating images with words, but organizing real images in a meaningful way. Now, for a how-to, such as this one, the organization is relatively intuitive: you start with a bunch of pieces and progressively they come together to make a single, coherent thing. Organizing an image-heavy piece that tells a less structurally-conventional story becomes more interesting. For example, in making a profile within this medium, one would want to organize images based on the progression of the subject, which would not be as linear as building a model droid. The selection of a particular image depends heavily on the intended emotional response in the reader/viewer.

This particular article is interesting to me because Star Wars. But alternate applications of this medium could yield a universe of different pieces. In moving away from the typical, text-heavy essay, it is important to consider alternate media such as this.

Thought questions for discussion:

  • When you clicked on the link, what was the first thing that you did? Did you immediately start reading the text or did you skip right to the images?
  • How do you feel about the interplay between text and images? Does one work better than the other in this example? Is there too much of one and not enough of the other?
  • Overall, do you feel like an image-heavy article is more accessible or enjoyable or not?
  • Pick an example of metacommentary used in the text. What effect does this line have on the tone of the piece.
  • Consider the use of multimedia in your capstone project, evolution essay, and/or ePort. Does seeing this article change your thoughts on incorporating multimedia? How so?

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