Thing 6 Reflection
Thing 3 – Reusable Image Banks – I used Pixabay
Thing 4 – Communicating Visually – I used Quik
Thing 5 – Video Presentations – I used Powtoon
All new tools I’d not used before.
I signed up for Rudai23 with the intention of gaining new skills and updating existing ones, and to engage on a path of continued learning.
I’m a regular user of social media and have fully embraced new apps and tools for communication in recent years, such as Pinterest and Instagram, and can see many individuals and companies now using these to promote business and services. However the tasks required for the Rudai Things involved tools and apps which I had little or no prior knowledge of, and I have to say I am so glad to have been pointed toward them.
Pixabay for example is an absolute gem. I was one of the many using Google as my first port of call for an image – and whilst knowing that images must be credited when used – Pixabay makes finding free images a breeze! I’ll certainly utilise this a lot, especially since the site is easy to navigate and the images are great quality.
I set up a Flickr account too – this site I was previously aware of, but had never actually used myself. I’m yet to add my own photos, but I have downloaded the app to my phone for on the go use. I’m looking forward to this.
Thing 4 called for some video editing. This initially scared me slightly since I’ve little experience of this. I have uploaded videos to apps and streamed myself live, but never actually thought about editing. Quik makes this so simple. The choice of themes and music are easy to navigate and select. I opted to create a video out of some stills I had taken the day before of my dog on the beach. The theme I chose lent itself well to the fun subject, and uploading the video directly from the app to my social media was simple.
Thing 5 built on these creative skills further. I have had prior knowledge of creating presentations with Powerpoint and Camtasia – but I have to say I really dislike hearing my own voice back – so am not really inclined to record voiceovers! So I created a simple and silent video using the graphics and animations. It was quite effective, but I admit that it would have been enhanced by voiceover.
I feel as if I approached Things 3 to 5 with a somewhat cautious attitude. The content I usually post online is usually a lot simpler, and doesn’t reflect upon my knowledge of anything in particular – I like to think that my photos of my dog taken on my iPhone will not be judged in technique by experts in photography for example. So in my contributions for Rudai23 I perhaps felt a little inhibited in terms of unleashing my creativity since I am less familiar with writing for blogging, and with the tools for Thing 4 and 5. Where there’s judgement involved I am definitely more cautious.
As I was tentative I didn’t explore the tools and exploit their full potential, but this is clearly then a confidence issue. With practice I’ll improve in ability and self-belief. I am incredibly happy to have been introduced to the tools – Pixabay in partiucular is a superb tool – the site is easily navigated and a joy to browse, and the images are cool and relevant. Quik will also be staying on my phone for playing with further.
Use of the new tools and the chance to reflect upon my use of them also caused me to think hard about the use of image and accreditation. Working in education I have a good understanding of copyright laws and regularly speak to library users about what they may reproduce, and how they use it. For my own work and social media I have always used my own photos and drawings, and although I am no artist I generally feel happy with what I produce. Thing 3 showed me how I can also share my work as well as using those of other people. Direction to sites such as Pixabay has opened my eyes to new possibilities.
Considering all that I have done so far, it is clear that involvement and practice provides a better understanding of new areas compared to reading or hearing the information. Engaging in a task and uploading it for others to comment upon is in itself an education. It allows for a certain level of vulnerability in allowing other’s to judge, and yet it is an exciting opportunity for feedback and constructive criticism. Confidence in ability is clearly an issue I have discovered in the Rudai process, and one which I aim to work upon through further engagement, looking for areas to push myself.
Moving forward I am excited for new opportunities – I know I need to bite the bullet and immerse myself in order to unleash ability.