Logo Maker Badge

Seeing as how pretty much half the time when I walked into this class people would say “I saw you giving a tour today!”, you are probably all aware that I am a tour guide on campus (or at least I will be for another week). We don’t really have a definitive logo for our organization apart from just the standard picture of a tower that is on every Trinity item ever…so I decided to make one! And without further ado, here is is:

My extra cheesy logo

So this logo is completely cheesy. But I kind of love cheesy things so I was okay with that. TGA, in case you aren’t aware, stands for Tour Guide Association and is featured largely at the top of the logo. The rest of the logo consists of a compass (get it? Because we’re tour guides?) and then I made the most ridiculous slogan ever (it rhymes…and it could both mean finding your way around campus AND finding your way in which college you choose…and yeah, remember how I keep mentioning that creativity is not my strong suit? Just roll with it and pretend it’s not super lame.) and included that along the bottom. The TGA is the most important text so it is larger and at the top while the slogan is in a smaller text and at the bottom, so hopefully people would pay more attention to the actual name of the organization than the text at the bottom.

I actually kind of like how it turned out aesthetically, which I did not expect, although I wouldn’t necessarily want this logo to ever actually be used (again, see super cheesiness of it). But I had fun making it and trying to figure out what I wanted to do for it.

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Wireframe Wizard Badge

WireframeWizard Strategic Document

So I know that the point of Wireframes is not to use colors. However, colors are what I am worst at and wanted practice with. So I included them, just for my own personal reasons. If I were actually making a Wireframe for a company, I am fully aware that I would not include colors in the Wireframe.

I enjoyed this badge just because design and layouts and colors and such are not my strong suits. Over the summer at my internship there was this wonderful system where my analyst would hand me a picture of a layout and say “make this”. And I would. And I still got to be creative in how I made it happen but I didn’t have to come up with the design myself. I know that is a completely unrealistic expectation for the rest of my life, for someone just to hand me a layout instead of me having a part in designing it, so I knew that making layouts and the design portion of a site was something I really wanted to improve on. And Wireframes are a great way to do it, to be able to easily mess around and figure out how you want things to look. So basically, I am grateful to this badge and this class for introducing us to Wireframes!

The main page for my site

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Domain Hosting

http://www.alymiller.com. The coolest new site on the web.

I decided to go with HostGator because they had a month-by-month plan that I liked as opposed to other sites that wanted me to pay for the entire year. After paying for one month + the doman name, I was informed by John Mendiola that I could have just purchased a domain name and then sent it to what was hosted on our transmedia server…and saved myself a lot of money. Uh…oops. Oh well! But HostGator seems reliable and fairly easy to set up. I was a bit confused at first why my domain wasn’t working, but then I got a phone call from them where they verified that I was actually me before they would activate it. So that was nice.

My website doesn’t have anything on it (apart from a bunch of Arrested Development quotes) but the basic layout is there. I may see if I want to add more to it or make it better at some point–because it is definitely FAR from ideal (ie my header thing is all messed up unless you’re using the exact screen resolution and zoom settings that I was. I am aware that this is wrong and bad, but CSS was being mean and that was a good temporary fix). But getting the temporary layout up was fun and overall I am pleased with the results!

Also, I was very surprised that alymiller.com wasn’t taken yet. I know my first name is spelled a little weird, but Miller is so common that I just didn’t expect it to be free. So that was a very nice surprise!

My beautiful(ish) website

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Podcast Badge

http://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/podcasting-with-john-and-aly/id523952489

So…John and I made a podcast! About the cloud! And virtual OS’s, which are these crazy things that exist! You probably shouldn’t listen to it.

It was a lot of fun to make though, and much easier than I thought. I expected a typical episode would last like…10 minutes max. But it turns out that once you get started talking, it’s really easy to keep going. Our second podcast somehow even ended up being 27 minutes long (although, to be fair, that’s mainly because we went on a giant tangent about how I don’t like e-readers). We had a crazy giant google doc of an outline of what we were going to talk about which ended up helping a lot–without that I have no idea how we would have known what we were going to talk about next and we would have gone on many, many more tangents.

I was also surprised at how easy it was to put things on the store. It looked like it was going to be really complicated but it ended up being really easy to figure out and implement. With only a minor mishap of me not being to log onto the server with Filezilla (ending in me putting our files into a Dropbox folder and making John upload them), we got the podcast published and on the store in probably just like…thirty minutes? So yeah, super easy.

Moral of the story: this badge was fun!

(Also, I talk fast. Sorry about that.)

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Pen Tool Badge

So for my silhouette I chose to do Rory from Doctor Who because he is the best ever (my theory: characters named Rory are always the best). I found a good action shot of him in his Centurion garb (if you are intrigued about why he is dressed as a Roman, then you obviously need to watch the show!) and then made a silhouette happen. This was actually very easy to cut out…with the exception of his hand. I could never quite get the hand perfect, but after a while of trying I just shrugged and decided it was good enough. But I really like how it turned out–I’ve never done silhouettes before and they’re a cool effect, especially with the action shot. So without further ado…admire Rory in all his glory!

Image of Rory Williams in action

Image of Rory Williams in action again--but this time in a silhouette!

And now for the second part of the assignment. After scouring my Facebook pictures for something that could be inserted into a picture…I decided to use this one of me at Dinosaur World (my roommate and I stopped there on our drive back to DFW once because we’re the kind of people who do weird things like that. It was the greatest thing ever. I highly recommend it). Because it was an outdoor picture and I knew the lighting would be weird, I knew that I needed to put myself in a picture where I was outdoors. I originally wanted to insert myself into an episode of Angel, where Joss Whedon is dressed as a demon named Numfar and dances around (if you want to see…link to a video is here) because that is one of my favorites scenes of anything ever, but it was very difficult to find high resolution images of that. But for some reason in my search results for that, an image of Lost popped up, and I realized that that was perfect. So here is me crashing the Losties’ party, giving a thumbs up behind Sawyer. I had a bit of trouble for a while, because my feet are cut off in the original image so I had to hide myself behind someone, meaning that I had to use the pen tool on Sawyer/Kate/Claire as well to make it so they were in front of me and covering up my lack of feet. And so here is me, hanging out on the Island!

Me hanging out with a dinosaur.

Me hanging out on the island with the Losties. I'm way more excited to be there than they are.

As far as enjoying video vs. written tutorials, I personally definitely prefer written tutorials. I am definitely someone who likes to play with things and mess around and figure it out myself, so video tutorials majorly try my patience and I usually just end up messing with things and figuring it out by myself while the video plays uselessly in the background.

But the pen tool is a great tool to use and know. Definitely more accurate than the magnetic lasso tool (although I love that tool) and you have much more control than the polygonal lasso tool.

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Minimalist Design

I have decided that I like minimalist design. A lot. I really enjoyed looking at all the examples posted and it was fun incorporating the principles into things that I made. Plus, it’s just so simple! It came much easier to me than I thought (design/color choosing/etc is not exactly my forte) and I had fun with it.

My desktop background was what I started with. I had a bit of difficulty at first figuring out all the crazy fancy brushes in Photoshop (I am very used to my copy of Photoshop that I’ve had since the seventh grade, so the new features on this version threw me for a bit), but once I realized that the one that looks like grass won’t make a single blade, like I wanted, but this crazy grass texture (I originally wanted just a gray background with a green blade of grass) and started exploring other brushes, I found that making swirls with the different textures of brushes was fun. Hence the end result of my desktop background!

Image

For my book cover, after stressing about which book or movie I wanted to do, and then further stressing about exactly which Harry Potter book I should title it (snitches play an important role in many of the books, so choosing which was difficult), making the actual design was pretty simple. I found a picture of a snitch, overlayed it with a gold color, added a line, and boom! Choosing the typeface was stressful though. That is always stressful. I have little to no eye as to what looks good and what doesn’t, so I eventually just had to pick the one I thought looked best. 

Image

Overall, I had fun with this badge! I am way more pleased with the results than I thought I would be and playing with photoshop again was fun. I forgot that I missed it! But basically, minimalist design is cool. I am a fan.

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Minisite Three!

So, while my site is far from the prettiest thing in the world (I like to think of it as just extremely minimalist), I had fun playing with Javascript. I’ve had experience with Javascript before, but then it just kind of me diving right in, and it has definitely been helpful going back to the basics. I got to do a few “fun” things with it, like my I’m Feeling Lucky button and my password that I print out on the profile page. Plus, I’ve never done local storage before, so that was fun!

Honestly, probably the most difficult part of this was finding an intrusive Javascript technique to use. I had a very hard time just finding one that we didn’t talk about in class because I wasn’t really sure what to search for, and everything I thought of wasn’t possible (or, at least, wasn’t easily possible) with Javascript. I eventually found the screen resolution technique, which is one that could actually be very useful, especially for dynamic resizing of content and such.

And now without further ado, here is the link to my site: http://transmedia.trinity.edu/~amille10/minisite3/register.html

**EDIT**

Well, it is now Sunday night, and I just finished adding some things to my site to make it more pretty/interesting. Mainly I made the Register and Profile pages have a Facebook theme  and added a fun Scroogle image. I also fixed a bug I found in my Scroogle page, where I’d apparently replaced a { with a ( at some point? Oops. Well, that’s all I had to say, just wanted to make a note that the site has been edited since the original blog post!

Screenshot of the profile page

Screenshot of the shop page

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