« At a loss | Main | Project Designs »

Taking Note

Inspiration for this oh-so-abstract class could be taken from anything, literally. Here’s a list of things I came up with when I initially saw the blog post:
Movies, musicals, surveys, music performances, websites, fundraisers, blogs, photojournalism, books, pamphlets, skits, slideshows, public service announcements, the guy singing on the street corner, maps, experiments, fossils, poems, newspapers, magazines, television, documentaries.

I feel that, for me, some of the most influential documentations I am inspired by are books, newspapers, photojournalism, and movies. I feel like this is how the majority of mankind would respond to such a question—inspiration comes from the things we pay attention to. These are the things I pay attention to.


Newspapers have a clear impact on our world—they tell us the news, after all! Without them, I’d be stuck with straight up word-of-mouth news only (Sarah doesn’t own a TV). For my topic (sustainability), especially, there’s been a ton of debate about going green, sustainability, the lack of it, etc. Everyday, it seems that there’s a new gadget that is “green-certified,? or a celebrity getting on the environmental bandwagon, or a company claiming their positive impact on our environment. All these things, and more, come out of a newspaper. This documentation style will not only have tons of inspiration in its structure and form, but also in its content.
Everyone goes to the movies---we must like them, or be inspired by them, or something. Something keeps us going to them; otherwise we wouldn’t continue to spend 8 dollars to watch it on a big screen. The inspiration I feel like we could take from movies is not what the movies are about, but what keeps people drawn to them. They’re entertaining. Not too many people want to learn about sustainability and pay 8 dollars, so we must be able to some how make it apply to them. Using this baiting “trick,? as they do in the movies, we need to bring it close to home in order to captivate the seriousness of our millennium goal.


I think another documentation/presentation style which would be inspiring is a skit, musical, or play. This would remind us, regardless of the content, that we must be creative in order to find a solution to such a problem as making our world sustainable. We must love the questions, as Ozayr says. And in that love, we must also be fond with the creative process which brings about an answer. Much like the plot of a movie or play. The plot is about the process, it doesn’t just go from exposition to resolution—there has to be some conflict and a climax involved. There has to be an Aha! moment somewhere along the way, whether it be realizing just how hurtful you are to the earth, or realizing there’s a way to combat your bad history with recycling.
Photos can be incredibly inspiring—whether they are joyous like wedding photos, or heartbreaking like pictures of undernourished children.

They speak to our mind’s eye, our soul, they bring us into the situation. I could, for instance, describe an afternoon on a tropical island, but with our desensitized winter nerves, it might be hard to understand the warmth of the sun. Look at a picture, though, and it’s easier to imagine ourselves in that place, feeling the rays beam on our skin. That’s the power of photography.