MONDAY Laurie went over Grant Applications with us this morning, something to think about for our individual Spring Projects…although, it doesn’t appear very many people are interested in applying. I am still unsure what I even want to do for the Spring Project. Hopefully some inspiration strikes me soon…I have to have this idea submitted in a week, even if I don’t follow through with applying! Wish me luck. Afterwards we went into the Monday production meeting, we have a lot coming up and it seems even busier since we went over three weeks worth of productions given that next Monday the campus is closed. Either way, they will all get accomplished. I also got thrown onto a production this afternoon very last minute. It wasn’t much, just helping set up the projector screen in the Library common area. The rest of the afternoon consisted of all the interns meeting and going over our collaborative winter project before pitching the idea to Peter, Dave and Raoul. It’s coming down to crunch time and we need to get this thing off the ground but I think we are in a good place with it so it should all work out.
TUESDAY I had to come in late again, my daughter has been sick and needed to go to the doctors office this morning. I did not accomplish much at the office, the only thing I did do was complete a Mix Bench Proficiency with a student.
WEDNESDAY I was given the opportunity to run a production all on my own this morning. I set up the Mix Bench for a podcast with a faculty member who is the host for a show called Cross Cultural Poetics, broadcasted not only on KAOS but on PennSound at Penn State University as well. Pretty excited to finish this piece up and get it on the air!
MONDAY Welcome Back Interns! After a nice break we all came back to campus safely, some enjoyed time with family and friends, a few got sick and one had a new addition to the family by way of a puppy! After a few minutes of catching up it was quickly back to work and the biggest obstacle looming is the Intern Project that is due at the end of this quarter. We have at least nailed down an over-arching theme for the project, we just haven’t come up with how we want to execute the plan. We have had lots of ideas but not a lot of absolutes. This may be an issue or this just may be how it really transpires…either way, I think it is something that we all are starting to feel and want to work towards getting accomplished.
TUESDAY Back in the swing of things in the office, spent the morning going through the studios and making sure they are all ready for use this coming quarter, computers were already updated, just making sure all the programs are working properly. Sam and I also recorded a new radio spot for KAOS, advertising the Evergreen Student Media Project. So far, we are up to 19 song submissions…not bad, would like to have a few more, hence the deadline extension.
WEDNESDAY Came in a little early to help Carson with a telephone interview, it was a lot of fun setting up the mixing bench to record this podcast. It wasn’t overwhelming but it was a new experience and look forward to being part of another one next week. I also stayed a little late helping Zena teach her students on the basics of Digital Performer, since that will be the DAW of choice this quarter.
THURSDAY Spent the majority of the day working on my intern contract for this quarter but I also was asked to due the final edits for an archival piece. It was the audio recordings taken during a memorial service held in the Long House, it was nice to be given the opportunity to do that…plus I was able to show Coby (vidtern) some basic audio editing. We also held our first ESMP meeting for the quarter…only five people showed but those who attended got the opportunity to listen to the submitted songs again.
FRIDAY I came in a little late because my refrigerator stopped working over night, so I spent the morning trying to get it fixed…no such luck. Anyway, by the time I got in it was time for our first Intern Production Meeting of the quarter, time to really sit down and hash out what we are going to present as a group at the end of this quarter. The meeting was very productive, think we are finally headed in a good direction with an end goal in mind. Guess now its time to start executing the plan. More to come as we get closer opening night!
The nice thing about having a day off in the middle of the week is that it breaks the week up and you get the sense of having two Fridays. The bad thing about having a day off in the middle of the week is that you have the sense of enduring two Mondays! And that is exactly how week 7 felt. It wasn’t bad, just shortened and a bit off. Either way, the week was still a success and was able to get a lot done. We did a little learning, a little teaching and a little brainstorming…not half bad.
Raoul offered up some hands-on learning for all of us this week, broke everyone up into teams of two and he dedicated an hour to each group on the art of soldering wires together. I thought this was great; I have soldered wires before but was never properly trained, just personal trial and error. Some things I have done previously were right, others I was way off! It was nice to be taught the correct way and now I feel confident in my ability to build or repair a wire or circuit board for my personal use or if asked to repair something during the remainder of the internship.
Along with learning how to solder, I took the time to flag down a fellow intern and asked her to show me how to operate some cameras. Avida was kind enough to block out some time in her schedule and bring me up to Media Loan and go over several video and still shot cameras they have available to the campus. It is the first occasion I have taken to sit down with another intern one-on-one and have them explain what they do and show me how to operate the equipment they deal with on a daily basis. Afterwards, Peter was excited to hear I had taken that opportunity and now can’t wait for me to check out one of the Sony HXR’s and piece together a video short using Adobe Premier editing software. Guess I need to sit down with one of the video interns so they can show me how that works and get started on my directorial masterpiece!
The rest of the week was rather mundane, conducted Audio/Video sweeps throughout the Communications and Library building, everything seemed to be in operational order so no concern. Received and processed at least 20 Audio Studio work orders for Zena and Peter’s classes, seems like we have to teach all of the students how to fill out the paperwork properly still…even after explaining it several times, people still can’t get it correct. And I think I conducted my last Audio Lab proficiency test…maybe. Will have Zena double check with her class this week to ensure everyone has been through and passed a test. We also held our first Evergreen Student Media Project group meeting, Marlee made cookies and Sam brought punch but nobody showed up. Well, Avida and Coby showed up, along with the ESMP committee heads, so we had a total of six people sitting around, eating cookies and discussing what to do this year. I think we have it nailed down and know how much we’ll need for the budget, now its just a matter of finalizing the paperwork and submitting everything with the S&A board for approval. And we need more submissions!
Week six is in the books. This week was not overly exciting but it wasn’t dull either. It is safe to say we are all “in the groove” and working at a good pace. Nobody seems to be overwhelmed and we all get along which makes for a great work environment. We, the interns, even took the time to get together and have dinner this week! It was a great opportunity to socialize off campus, really get to know each other beyond surface level and discuss topics other than our individual intern positions. It was also established that we will be doing this more often.
Anyway, highlighting the week was another opportunity to work in the CCAM for our Wednesday training. Only this time it wasn’t just an hour of going over camera operations and quickly being showed the studio control room, it was more in depth training with lots of hands-on opportunity to use the equipment. I found myself fascinated with the cameras, but not as an operator. Sitting in the Engineering room and getting to control the color saturation, black depth and making iris adjustments remotely was a blast. Getting the chance to make minute adjustments and watching the picture get clearer and sharper was captivating, and knowing people do this for a living, effecting how millions of people see what is being broadcasted in their homes makes me appreciate all the behind the scenes work that goes unnoticed. I did not get the chance to play the role of Producer or switch operator but we still have plenty of time and I’m sure many more opportunities will come up, so in due time.
Throughout the rest of the week it was business as usual, I did A/V sweeps in the Comm building, input audio studio work order requests and conducted several proficiency tests in the Audio Lab for Zena’s class. So far everyone seems to understand the flow of the room and how everything works when it comes to recording, there is some hesitation with a few students but I believe the timidness comes from not having a lot of time working in a studio environment. After some trial and error, they’ll get it down and will be running the mixing benches without complications. I also had another opportunity to work on a production in the CCAM, it was fun but trying at the same time. My knowledge of running a small, wireless lavalier style microphone was definitely tested with this class we were recording. It is easy to run and hide a microphone, plus its wire, on someone wearing a collard shirt or a sweater but a few people pushed my ingenuity with their attire, I managed to do alright and everything sounded great, which is the most important thing anyway.
That pretty much sums up the week. Lots of learning; Peter taught us about pixilation, Raul and Dave conducted the in-depth training in the CCAM and I did some on the spot research on microphone placements while working the production for Laurie Blewitt’s class. Speaking of research got a lot of good information for our end of quarter technical project and was able to come up with a decent bibliography. All in all, a good week!
Week five was big! Well, big for me personally anyway. As always, I stayed busy with some of the more routine aspects of my days but I also had some new adventures thrown at me which were not overwhelming, they just added a bit of a challenge I wasn’t prepared for yet. Needless to say I was able to get conquer those obstacles without any problems, came out as a better person individually and helped a few people out along the way. Plus, I celebrated my 40th birthday during the week! The view on top of the hill is pretty great, not sure what all the fuss was about.
One of the newest aspects of the internship I’ve been involved in has been the handling of Audio Studio work orders from Peter and Zena’s students. Well, it has mostly been Peter’s class so far; Zena’s students are still taking proficiencies on the basics of the Audio Lab and are not ready to record in the spaces just yet. I did not anticipate how much time it would take to juggle all the schedules of the recording spaces, the available equipment the students want to use and the requested time slots the students will be available to use those spaces. And that is if the students fill out the request form properly or legibly. I spent a lot of time emailing or calling students to verify all the information was correct and compromising with them if a specific microphone or room was not available for checkout. The great thing is, everyone has been flexible so we haven’t ran into any issues and the folks up in Media Loan have been a tremendous help making sure equipment is ready when the student shows up.
I really didn’t do much sound intensive stuff this week but I did help set up the stage, microphones, speakers and projector for a town hall meeting in the Library Commons area. I am not sure what the event was for but it was still a chance to get out and do some set-up and tear down for an event. What I also had a chance to do with regards to sound was a lot of trouble shooting for people in different studios. Of course my first “service call” was into a room I have never worked in, a student from Ben’s Electronic Music class needed some assistance in a Music Technology Lab. Sam was busy giving a proficiency test and I didn’t want to interrupt her, knowing those rooms are her specialty, so I went over to try and offer some assistance as best I could. Luckily after 30 minutes of trial and error, I was able to get everything working properly. Good thing too, he was working on his week 5 project and it was due that evening!
Looking back on this week, I did a lot of trouble shooting for students. Whether it was in a studio or the Multi-Media Lab, I got to sit down next to someone and figure out a problem not only for myself but turn it into a teachable moment for them as well. At least I hope it was insightful to them. Either way, I learned something and that is always a plus.