Friday, March 13, 2009
Breakout Session: Digital Video Across the Curriculum – Diane Nerwen (Authored by C. Calabrese from LHRIC)
I’ve never considered myself a ‘creative’ person by nature. I believed that creativity equaled art in the traditional sense. I didn’t like to paint, draw or sculpt. I took lots of photographs, but mostly for the purpose of recording events.In recent years I’ve found my creative side by creating digital videos. These videos typically honor a person or an event – retirement, special birthday, memorial. As I experience my final projects with others, I am always amazed at the emotions that my movie evokes and realize that it is true art. To some degree I was rearranging reality and telling a story.In Diane Nerwen’s presentation about Digital Video Across the Curriculum, she spoke about Daniel Pink and his book "A Whole New Mind: Why Right Brainers Will Rule the Future." Mr. Pink believes that the era of the ‘left brain’ dominance is giving way to ‘right brain’ qualities – inventiveness, empathy and meaning-predominate. As Ms. Nerwen detailed the process the students go through to complete their projects, I realized how much of that process lends itself to the ‘left brain’. In particular, the planning process includes storyboarding and organizing shot lists. Sounds like a logical, sequential, analytical – left-brain – process. Students have to use both sides of their brains to complete these projects or rely on a group member to balance out each side of the collective ‘brain’. Throughout her presentation, Ms. Nerwen shared examples of many different types of videos that her students create (poetry, music videos, documentaries, public service announcements, parodies). The preparation and planning phase was key to a successful video. For example, if you are going to make a PSA about gun violence, do you want to show guns? The discussions that follow go much beyond making a ‘cool’ video with the latest software. The products were phenomenal and the processes evident.Do you need to be ‘right brain’ dominant to rule the future? I believe we ‘left-brainers’ still have a place!