Saturday, December 23, 2006

The deadline runs smoothly!!!

This week was deadline week and although I was quite panicky about this a few weeks ago I am very pleased with how everything went. Because of the amount of time I had been putting in during my self study in recent weeks I was able to just turn up at college at 11.30 and hand the assignment in without any real pressure. I think that this was really beneficial as when I handed in the last assignment I came in at the normal time and needed to work on a few things before I handed it in. I think that because of this the quality of my work would not have been as high as I believe it is this time. However, you only learn from previous experiences so I feel that this time I feel that my approach was much better and I will certainly try to do this again for future assignments.

After completing my first semester I can honestly say that the course has far exceeded my expectations. If somebody would have said to me that I would be writing 4500 words 6 months ago I would have not believed them at all! The real problem I have found is trying to cut down on my words and not trying to write them so this shows just how much my attitude has changed since starting the semester.

Another surprising element about the course is the amount of work that I am getting through and the new programs that I am learning, as we are only a few months into the course I would not have thought that I would have got through almost 2 sketchbooks and be working in programs such as PageMaker and Photoshop this early on. I am beginning to feel much more comfortable with these programs which can only benefit me in the future.

I am also pleased with the group as a whole because before I started the course I did not know anybody at all. I think that it is a good group to work in and there is not anybody in the group that I do not get on with. This creates a good atmosphere within the class and I feel that this helps whenever you have any problems. All of this culminates in everybody’s work benefiting from being in such a good group.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Everything falling into place!!!

Even though our assignments need to be handed in this time next week I feel that this week has been quite relaxed. I think that this is due to the fact that last week I realised just how close we are to the deadline and spent quite a lot of time on both assignments in my self study. This was extremely beneficial as it allowed me to just gather everything together so that everything was in order and ready for our group discussion on Thursday. I feel that because of this I then received better feedback which will enable me to improve on both assignments. I believe that the next time I am in this situation it will be a good approach to take and I will certainly try to do this again.

Thursday’s group feedback meeting was also the last time that our current group will be together. I think that it is quite a shame that this group is being broken up because I feel that we have worked quite well together and I think that the fact that we have been so well organised and seem to have everything in order is down to being in such a close knit group. I am however looking forward to working with other people in the group who I have not really interacted with as much.

I finally finished the image restoration work on Thursday afternoon and this is a real relief as this time last week I thought I would never be able to complete it. With the guidance I got from Steve in last week’s feedback meeting I had a much clearer understanding of what I should be trying to achieve and I am quite happy with the end product (Images of original and finished image at bottom of entry). Because of this I am now much more confident in Photoshop and if I were to do this again I am sure that I would be able to do it more effectively and quicker.

So this week is really going to be focused on tying up a few loose ends so that I am ready to hand everything in next Thursday. Hopefully this time I will be able to get everything completed to the required standard so that when we start next semester I will be able to focus solely on our new assignments.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

The end is near!!!

As our assignments have to be as complete as they possibly can be by this time next week the pressure is now certainly on. It hadn’t really struck me just how much work there was to be done until the latter part of last week so this week has been pretty manic to say the least!

On Wednesday as normal we were working on our back to basics assignment. Before the lesson started I was quite comfortable with this and most of my anxiety had been aimed toward the other assignment. However this all changed as I started to put my screen designs into Pagemaker.

I decided to design the text on the website to be quite wide so that there would be no scrolling on the site. By doing this I totally forgot about the principals that I learnt about in the previous assignment about how wide text should be to keep users interest. As I had spent the majority of the afternoon doing the design it was quite demoralising to be told that I would have to drastically alter it but I feel that once this is out of the way I have will have the majority of the work done and will be able focus more on the other assignment which I find much more challenging. If I were to do this again I will definitely remember about text width on websites so that I will be able to design the website better and save myself a lot of time.

On Thursday Steve wanted to see our image restoration task to decide if we had done a good enough job or if we had to do it again. I was not confident in my image at all as I felt that I had adjusted the levels of image incorrectly which meant that certain parts could not be distinguished.

As expected Steve did think that I should do this again but this was beneficial as he told me what I could do to stop this happening next time. Even though this is going to be a very time consuming task I feel that it will certainly benefit me in the long run as I will be able to have more experience and become more familiar with the application. If I were to do this exercise again I would definitely keep a closer eye on the image when I am altering certain settings to stop the same thing happening again.

There is an awful lot of work to be done between now and next week, hopefully I will be able to complete it to a decent standard so that any little things that may result in my work being referred can be identified and worked on before it is too late!