No Zombie Tricks this week we made it through week 6!!!!!!

Week 6 Wrapped Up

First off I will thank goodness we survived another week of the apocalypse.  So this week was a fun one for me.  Being able to create my character Carson Gordon,  being able to play around with different design techniques and going for a stroll through downtown Fredericksburg to find design concepts.  With each passing week I feel myself trying to be more creative by enhancing the techniques that we have used or learned the weeks prior.  This week Carson Gordon reached out to other survivors to create a team.  My group consists of Caroline Callahan, (Rachel Harris- “Sarah Thatcher”,) (Taylor Ostrom- “Alex Whitmore”), and (Samara Wong- “Winifred Hart”), and of (course myself- “Carson Gordon”).  Our team being assembled now we are more prepared for THE END.

This week I ended up using the resources or suggestions given to us in the resources page for this week.  I ended up using Canva and GIMP as the main applications for my finished products.  As I am new to both of these programs I ended up either doing the tutorials, googling or asking for help in Slack.  As my products are no masterpieces as of yet, I feel that they are progressively getting better and I have others to thank for getting me caught up to speed.


My Hero Machine Creation

I created the bad ass Carson Gordon on the website Hero Machine.  Carson Gordon Is a prior veteran from the United States Army who has a background in medical.  He is an expert in teaching and practicing life saving techniques and is an expert in shooting shit.  His dog Mufasa looks forward to chewing on some new bones i.e. zombie bones.  I had fun creating this character, even though it took me awhile I was able to finally get the finished product I wanted.  I practically went through each character trait to see what my guy would look like, I guess I was goofing off more than I was working so I guess this is why it took me so long.

Carson Gordon in the Flesh











Daily Creates

 Design Assignments

I choose to do my alternate book cover in a stair step fashion with my text, something different from what I had seen with most of the book covers or movies I looked up for this book.  I completed the Apocalyptic Alternative Book Cover assignment by using the program GIMP which is supposedly similar to Adobe Photoshop, but GIMP was free.  It was a learning process as this program was new to me and I have a lot to learn but below is my revamped World War Z book cover, with the crater on the middle where the zombies were officially eradicated.

World War Z alternate book cover


Hopefully we can find her Hat @Marthas Hat


Destination Post Card Assignment


Responses to others

Jillian Gillman’s character Tala looks as if she is realistic.   Like she just had her photo taken my a cell phone.  I really liked her use of the background to make the photo more realistic. I was having some trouble getting my character to look natural in different settings because I was unable to get the white background off of my character I created in Hero Machine.  After looking at Jillian’s page and looking at Alex in his natural habitat by Daniel Mercado I wanted my character to look as like he was in a natural setting as well.  So I reached out as well as commented on these other sites to get a better understanding of how to impose my character a certain setting.

Question of the Week

Group dynamics can be tricky.
What’s been the most succesful group you’ve been a part of and what made it work?

I would say that the most successful group I have been in, is a platoon I was attached to while in the Army.  Each individual had a different job and in order for the group to be successful each member of the team had to do their job, pull their weight to make day to day missions work.  Biggest thing was communication dishing it out or delegating to others or listening to potential issues.  People say communication is one of the biggest keys for success, this is especially true when it comes to the Army or armed forces communication or lack there of can get others hurt.  Being a leader at times, and other times letting others lead makes a person’s sense of purpose seem more worth it.

My Interpretation: of the 8 principles of design.

So I figured I could find things around my home, around my neighborhood, my immediate area, but to my luck I couldn’t really find anything to fit the eight concepts.  In my area there are a lot of construction signs but I figured this would be bleh so I chose not to take pictures of these items.  I feel that I hit the design jackpot by going to the downtown portion of Fredericksburg right around the corner from school.  I knew this designblitz would take me some so I waited until today, Friday to complete this.  Here are my photos below.

  1. Balance –  Symmetrical on both halves of the stop sign

  2. Color


  1. Alignment





  1. Color and Space

  2. Proximity 


Learning to be better at Design!!!!


After listening to the talk  by Paula Scher I’ve come to conclusion that you do not need to be a design professional to be successful in design.  I felt like at the beginning she was talking directly to me.  She said that you do not need to know what you are doing to create something wonderful.  Well I sure hope I can create something wonderful with the beginners knowledge I currently have when approaching our design assignments.  When listening to her talk she seemed to focus on working outside the box, this is where your best work will occur.   I loved how she hated a certain font, and she did everything in her power to never use it ever again.   If we step outside our boundaries or our limitations when it comes to design we will end up with better end products.

During David Carson’s I was really amused with all the different pictures of design he had taken over his many years, and his interpretation of them.  He shows that each image has a story to tell and I love how he showed this in the writing of “No Parking” on two different garage doors.  That these doors paint a picture, and each viewer will have a different interpretation.


Contrasting the two talks I feel that Scher’s was more serious and detailed more of her accomplishments, Carson’s was more off the cuff and more entertaining showing design he found in the world.  But I think both talks show us that even though we might not be good at design with some work we can all be design artists only if you love and enjoy doing it.  That design is everywhere and it can have a big impact on those who view it.

I’ve enjoyed using Canva and by going through these tutorials I realize I haven’t even scratched the surface in what I can do within this website. I choose to take the (Art of Alignment, Using Canva Grids, Harnessing Hierarchy, Canva Shortcuts Part 1, Designing with Shapes, Starting with Scale and Brilliant Backgrounds tutorials.)   I chose these tutorials to try to help me enhance my future products.  We were instructed to choose at least 7 tutorials that we were unfamiliar with, I will probably try out most of the tutorials due to my inexperience with this website and inexperience with design concepts. Between Canva and GIMP I definitely have a few extra tools in the toolbox to use.




Carson Gordon saying hello from Siesta Key!!!!!

The Assignment I did was a 3 1/4  star assignment Destination Post Card this is where you had to create a destination postcard using any design software of your choice. I started by choosing an image of a beach from google images you then had to put some words over the image just like a postcard. I personally used the program GIMP for my assignment to create the illusion that my character Carson Gordon was on the sandy beaches of Siesta Key, Florida.  At first I had an issue trying to super impose my character onto the background due to not saving my character from Hero Machine with a transparent background, but with some help from others I was directed to save my character with a transparent background to better use my character in any background setting I wanted.

I went ahead and removed all of Carson Gordon’s extra clothing in hero machine making him a little more cool when at the beach.  I’m starting to get the hang of both the GIMP program and Hero Machine at least I think I am.  Here is my created postcard below.



If you know the whereabouts of Professor Burtis’s hat please contact myself or the HCC department.  Time is of the essence.  If you took it or know who took it no charges will be filed.  All I ask is that you please reunite her with her hat ASAP.  Proudly brought to by Canva.


I used Canva this time instead of GIMP to create my Lost and Found Poster.  I skitched a picture from one of the youtube videos from week five.  I used a preset template for how to get a better six pack and imposed Professor Burtis picture onto the image.  I added some text boxes and whaaalaa you see my lost and found photo for Professor Burtis hat.

World War Z: Alternate Book Cover

Here is my Alternate Cover for the book World War Z.  So I choose to do my alternate book cover in a stair step fashion with my text, something different than I had seen with most of the book covers or movies I looked up for this book.  The title World War Z is either placed from top to bottom and centered in the middle of the book or the words “World War” would overlap the Z.  So I decided to change my book cover up a bit.  You can’t really see it but it looks the person in the lower right has a red marker of sorts and I placed the “Red Z” in a manner in which it looks like he drew it. With this view you can barely see the object or red marker in his hand as I seen it while working in the program GIMP.  I tried keeping with the apocalyptic feel,  post the zombie attacks, when the zombies were eradicated.  My book cover shows a huge crater in the center this is where the zombies were lured in and a huge firey projectile was dropped on their heads.


Below are the two different original book covers for the book World War Z.

I aquired the picture for my alternate book cover through google images.  I had imported the picture into the Application GIMP which I had downloaded from the design resource page from week 6 resources.  Once I was able to import the picture I had to learn my way around how to manipulate the multiple layers.  The layers in this picture were the picture itself and the 2 text boxes.  Once I learned how to manipulate them and change the text settings I was able to place the text where I wanted it.  I chose this program over Adobe due to it being free, but from what I’ve heard both are relatively the same in functionality.  I have just scratched the surface of this program but I look forward to using it in upcoming assignments.

Carson Gordon in the Flesh!!!!

I had fun creating the bad ass Carson Gordon on the website Hero Machine.  Carson Gordon Is a prior veteran from the United States Army who has a background in medical.  He is an expert in teaching and practicing life saving techniques and is an expert in shooting shit.  He looks forward to taking on the zombies head on and laughs in the face of danger.  He always has his companion “Mufasa” with him to help protect him.  He loves the great outdoors and looks forward to protect the others.



I went to the website Hero Machine and loaded the Male template.  From that point I went to every drop down box and added characteristics to my character.  After adding what I wanted to my character, I messed with his attributes (hair, beard, eye color and skin color).  After this was completed I played around with the colors of all the items, this took some time as there is three different settings or layers you can choose from to manipulate the colors.  I feel that this process was slow at first but as I played around with settings the process went a lot faster.

Week 5 I’m Still Alive!!!

Week Five Summary.

This week we used sound in our assignments, I had fun with this weeks assignments due to all the things you can do to manipulate sounds.  I got a late jump this week in my works due to having to learn some of the techniques needed to be successful in the things I produced.  I found the resource page to be pretty useful and I loved all the options we had to use free open source sounds.  The application I have gravitated to so far has been audacity, after I few hours and a couple clips later I feel I have a slight grasp of how to use it.  The website I enjoyed using as well was Freesound as it seemed to have every sound I wanted for my products.  This week was fun because it was something new that I hadn’t messed with before, with exception of cassette tapes and my old stereo system and recording live radio segments.

Assignment: Frequency 2156

So when I did my contribution to the Frequency 2156 site, I had to record my clip multiple times, on Audacity until I could finally get a clip I was happy with.  I then downloaded a couple of background noise clips fo blend in with my audio file.  I used the website Freesound to get all of my background sounds I felt like they had a good selection to choose from.  Overall I enjoyed being creative with my audio file being able to contribute to the overall story being told.  The sound clip I create is located below.

Assignment: Choose Your Own Audio

So this week I dove in on the audio assignment bank.  I decided to do two assignments to make up my five stars needed for the assignment portions.  I ended up with 7 stars instead.  I used the programs and some of the websites that were given to us in this weeks resources to come up with the audio files that I ended up using.  As this is the first time really dealing with these types of files I was behind the power curve a bit.  But after a few tutorials and a couple Youtube videos I was able to complete the assignment Auditory Hell (2 stars)

and Humming Away   (5 stars).  I played around with the Audacity app to make these files and then I uploaded them into Soundcloud.  It took awhile but here is what I created below.


Assignment: Character Choice and Introduction

So I chose a hard ass for my archetype character.  He is a prior veteran with a score to settle with the zombies.  He has many skills that hopefully will come in handy within the survival group.  I used the website Canva  to create my character Carson Gordon’s Resume.

     After reading  Elaina’s  blog  I laughed pretty hard.  She states that her character is considered to be the Ron Weasley of the group.  The person who brings jokes and releases tension when shit is going down, but overall is just a sidekick. She also stated that her character she decided to create Winston Henerly is an aspiring actress from NYC who is living in L.A. I love how she painted the picture of her being an Emma Stone wannabe.

I really liked the character Alex Whitmore by Taylor Ostrom her character,  is one that would be a natural leader that we will need in order to survive. The survivors will definitely need a plan to survive long-term and it seems like Alex is up for it with her Badass ways.  With characters like Alex we shouldn’t have an issue with survival.

                                DS 106 Radio

I listened to two ds106Radio segments War of the Worlds and The Peoria Plague at  ds106radio.  The War of the Worlds kept my attention the whole time and I loved how they switched to different people/segments throughout the broadcast, their use of sounds and voices painted a picture I couldn’t actually see but I felt like I was right there.  The Peoria Plague for me was a little bit harder for me to follow possibly due to my internet going in and out or that the copy as Professor Burtis stated wasn’t as good of quality as the War of the Worlds.  The main thing I learned from The Peoria Plague is do not, I mean do not drink the “CAT WATER”.

Question of the week

How are you feeling? Be specific.

How am I feeling mhmmm. About the class or in general.  Well if we are talking about how I feel about the class I am enjoying it so far.  We have had a different genre each week, making us expand our horizons on what we are able to do.  Even though some things are easier than others, this class is giving me more tools to put into my toolbox.  If we are talking about in general.  I think I am starting to get the crud I feel that Professor Burtis passed it to me through my computer.  So specifics, I feel the mucous building up in my nose and slowly dripping down to my throat, I feel it building up in my throat needing to be released by a good cough or by spitting out a  loogie.  My eyes and throat are starting to get irritated and I’m feeling a tad bit warmer than usual, so once again I think it was transmitted through my computer.  Other than that I feel just peachie, not trying to let the crud get me down so that way I can fight these zombies head on.

My Radio Transmission From Cape Town, Africa!!!! Frequency 2156


As a digital story I feel this website Frequency 2156  nailed the digital story aspect.  The multiple different audio files from numerous amounts of individuals help to paint a picture of what is going on within the individuals and what is going on around them.  Each audio file from different parts of the world show a different story going on, each file is not the same and I think this is what makes this type of storytelling different than others I have listened to or seen before.  I feel the crowd sourcing audio helps bring a different aspect to this genre.  People are able to be creative and have fun with this, because they are not following any structure in their audio works.  The only thing I would do different with this story is to make the uploads of audio not take so long, other than that I wouldn’t change a thing.  The visuals are amazing, the multi layers of the website keep the viewer’s attention, and the aspect of crowd-sourcing for the audio is an awesome idea to make it more realistic.

I tried to upload my voice recording to the Frequency 2156 website but was unsuccessful in doing so.  After bring it to Professor Burtis attention she stated to go ahead and record a voice transmission.  So I used audacity to merge my sounds together that I had gotten from the Free Sound Website .  I used two different sounds in the making of my clip, bunker sounds with a constant drip in the background and bombs hitting the bunker in the distance.  I think I am somewhat getting the hang of audacity and I quite enjoyed making my transmission from Cape Town Africa, in which my transmission was meant to reach others who were survivors like me.  As you can tell from my transmission my survival may depend on if I can find other survivors or not.

Taking forever to load!!!!

So when I did my contribution to the Frequency 2156 site, I had to record my clip multiple times.  The first few times I didn’t like the way I came across, but once I got my clip where I wanted it I played around with the settings to give it the apocalyptic feel.  Out of all things to use to record my voice for the clip, I ended up using my XBOX headphones to give my voice a little bit better quality of audio.  I did use a script of sorts that I created in Microsoft Word so that way I knew what I was going to say, so I didn’t fumble and bumble my audio clip.  Overall I enjoyed being creative with my audio file being able to contribute to the overall story being told.

My Xbox Headset worked wonders!!!!