“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgement; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship”  -Brene´ Brown

The first day of class was hard to get through; there was an overflow of information that sounded very much like a persistent chainsaw in my right ear. This past week, though, didn’t feel like that at all. I now unsurprisingly find my mind preoccupied and anxious about the next daily digital alchemy, as well as having to answer questions of whether I am okay or not. Of course, I respectively answer this question while lying on the floor of the writing center catching life outside at weird angles, or roaming around wide eyed with an irregular jolt to my step.

Speaking of the daily digital alchemy tasks, Kelli’s book spine alchemy spell made me want to create a poem with the words of her own spine poetry, and I couldn’t help but reflect on transparency in my life and as a being as I examined the nuances of Laura’s “black & light” daily alchemy. I am always ready to think about ideas and concepts in ways that I may have never thought to before, and I have had so much fun coming up with ideas for my own daily digital alchemy posts. Poof! (That was me making my images pop up below this paragraph).

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I’d like to transition now into my experience with the four elements media project for this week, which was both fun and challenging. I knew that literal representations of the elements wouldn’t be as arduous to come by as less literal ones, so the first half of the project was fairly easy. I did not end up getting all of my photos because I couldn’t, for the life of me, figure out what I wanted to do/could do for a less literal interpretation of “earth”. However, I am very pleased with what I came up with in general. I don’t get to walk outside of my house everyday after it has finished snowing and just dig my hands into the ground, or spin around in circles with my phone in the air until I can capture that close-to-perfect picture of… well… air. I wracked my brain thinking about each element for a few days until I came up with this:

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Finally, these last two tasks/events of the week really put the world of this course into perspective for me (in a positive way, of course). The twitter chat and the live webinar with Dr. Leonardo Flores were two very enlightening experiences. The very obvious fascination, which correlates with an aspect that has  been emphasized since I entered graduate school, is the very real fact and opportunity that we conversed with people from all around the world. This concept can seem like a small one because most people already know that this is possible, but on a much smaller scale when one is in a classroom setting delving with immense passion into works that were made/collected/curated/taught by the individual on the other side of that screen, it starts to become a big deal.

Dr. Flores said something in his TEDxtalk that really resonated with me. As he was giving his closing remarks, he stated that we as a people in this technological age with an interest in electronic literature (studying and making) are changing the world, but we should also “dare to change the word”. This phrase was so simple and so beautiful; it tore at my heart immediately. I find myself to be incredibly lucky to be a part of this course. There is nothing more that I want for my life (in a professional and career sense) than to inspire people, and have them find value in language and art because of something that I was able to share.

As I gain the urge to now shuffle out of this post, I would like to revert all attention back to the quote that I began this post with. If it is not clear yet, I chose this quote to accurately depict what I believe my relationship with this course will be like. I am amongst some very amazing people with vast minds, and I know that it can only go up from here. To net narratives and beyond.

 

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11 thoughts on “Up, Up, and Away!

  1. Great post! Love the slideshow and collage…i must try soon!!! also your choice of images/angles/perspectives and the less literal ideas were spot on…..looking forward to the journey with you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I told you I loved this on Twitter. But this is a great blog. I may have have you teach me how to get my blog awesome like this. I am on Blogger and its bleh. But your layout is really cool. Your images are great. I like the idea of adding our dda’s to our weekly blog posts.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This comment is almost not on the topic of alchemy but I really love the quote you use at the top of your blog. I understand the definition of connection used in that quote. Thanks for sharing ❤ I too kind of felt lost in the beginning of the semester. I was wondering if I had make a mistake by registering for this class. I think by now we know that we did make the right choice and it will be awesome. The picture of you holding the rocks to represent earth was awesome and it looked very professional. I loved watching you, Hailey and Katherine on the webinar too. You guys were awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. That photo of you holding the dirt really struck me. There’s something powerful about it, but I can’t put my finger on what. Maybe it’s the contrast of earth tone colors. Like, the sleeve of your sweater and the colors of the soil and pebbles complement each other in a cool, subtle way. Earth tones tend to get the short end of the stick when it comes to color affinities, and I see this pic as a kind of visual “love letter” to earth tones.

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  5. Less chainsaw, more art! I can feel that Brene Brown connecting with class even through a video camera connecting that makes everyone a bit pixelated.

    Yet that energy is stronger here reading your words as well as the interchanges in the comments. I’ve had a challenge in the past getting students interesting in commenting (many see it as a chore) so to see the rich back and forth makes me happy.

    You have a great compositional eye in your photography, the simple framing, placement, very artful. And yes, I too was and am drawn to the clutching the rock image. We have a goal to get to some of that world changing goal, and I eagerly look forward to what you will do.

    Liked by 1 person

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