Generative Topic: Internet History As a Reflection of Who You Are

I found a few lesson plans that deal with students' internet use. For example, a lesson plan from PBS asks students to think about how the design of social networking websites affects peoples' use the website. In the lesson, students design their own social networking website with pen and paper. The lesson plan was part of a feature on the PBS website that went along with an episode of Frontline called "Growing Up Online". The show looked at different aspects of the internet such as predators, bullying , and social networking.

I found a similar lesson plan from the New York Times in which "students consider the impact of microblogging and engage in this type of communication in an academic context". For example, students can write Twitter statuses in the voice of characters from the books they are reading.

I also found a lesson plan that ties into the collage aspect of the internet. In the lesson plan by Oliva Gude, students create an installation from found objects that describes their school and life.


My artwork

This piece was inspired by Brian Knep and Catherine Chalmer's work with life cycles, which I explained in the previous post. I like how both artists were able to simplify a thought provoking natural process into a more straightforward manner. For example, Chamler's photo series demystified the food chain by recording each step in a chain.

In my piece, I was thinking about the life cycle and how when something dies, its remains are made into something new. No new matter is ever created. I decided to use birds in my collage to explain this idea because I am doing work with birds in my other classes.

When I was making this piece, I was thinking a lot about how to depict the passage of time in 2D artwork. I wanted my piece to be read circularly, so the viewer gets the sense that it is an ongoing process. I embroidered strips of hand-printed fabric that I previously made and thought of the organic shapes on the fabric as cells which would mark the beginning of life. I then added a bird and an upside down "dead" bird to show life and death. I also included a pile of feather that would represent decay. Although it a morbid topic, I decided to not focus on the disturbing aspects but think of the process spiritually. To me, it is comforting that our psychical beings are used to create and maintain life.

I think it is interesting that I was able to study and translate ideas from new media work into my own more traditional work.