Reflective Writing

 

  1. Prompt – Reflect and Write 300 words

(Reflect, write about reflection prompted by the reading – ‘writing reflectively’ ­Briefly describe two points that you have taken from that reading. Points that excite you, something that was completely new to you.)

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There are two main points that I have learned from the papers. Reflective writing is a new knowledge I have acquired from the reading. The importance of writing critically is to reflect on what everyone has done or involved and it can substantially contribute to self-improvement. This type of writing is not about describing your activities or involvement in the special situation, but it requires a person to think thoroughly about what he/she has made and to find his/her loopholes and successes to improve and motivate his/herself. This type of writing might be out of the interest of some people even myself, who has never thought of using reflective writing to change the negative results or dissatisfactions. I have just realised that it is significant to observe or reflect on daily’s activities and it can be the possibility to make thing positively change. Writing reflective journal enables me to figure out my weaknesses or strengths that can help adjust methods or attitudes for a better performance, and this is a useful way for me to become more successful both academic study and future career. For this reason, I will use reflective writing journal to enhance my critical thinking skills and self-performance.

Another important point from the reading is making an assumption and it intrigues me. The concept of recognising assumption is quite abstract and unrealistic, yet it is beneficial to form an idea of what thing perhaps happen. This might lead to pre-assumed solutions or to develop strategies. With useful information from the assumption, people may be prepared to tackle any kinds of problems occurring and it might be an evidence or idea for reflection. It is surprising to learn that assumption can be considered as a key point for reflection. I rarely think of making an assumption about particular event or person, and I have never paid much attention for predicting the future. This can be my weakness that I need to change. Making an assumption possibly allows me to think strategically ahead before meeting someone or attending events. Thus, this immensely benefits self-reflection and provide me with some ideas in advance to be prepared for the upcoming or unprecedented events.

  1. Prompt – Goals and Desires – 300 words

In 300 words or less outline your goals, desires – what you want to get out of this semester. You will review this later in the course. You may rethink this dramatically – this is a good thing.

My main goal in this course is to analyse and manage media project effectively. The positive expectation is that my technical skills and ability to initiate attractive content for video will be improved after this course. Throughout the course, my technical skills in terms of shooting and editing video will become more advanced and able to produce high-quality videos. I believe that this course will enhance my existing production skills mainly on shooting video and recording sound.

As filming is my weakness and I have limited knowledge of media production. I strongly hope that this course will enable me to practice more in shooting and understand clearly about different kinds of techniques in order to capture interesting and creative shots.  The lecturer and tutor will train how to record perfect sound since it is my barrier. Editing skills are also important. Learning how to use the professional software program and the effective techniques to edit footages and sound can allow me to work more efficient in producing documentary or various videos.

Another expectation associated with this course is producing high-standard content. The significance of producing content for each video production can attract more audience and uphold audience’s trust, but it is quite challenging for me. Understanding the essential elements of producing high-quality content plays an important role to boost my confidence in designing content for video. My ability to initiate new and interesting ideas for producing video will be expanded and improved throughout the course. Thus, I believe that this course will teach me with a wide range of abilities to produce attractive content allowing me to work sufficiently the media industries.

  1. Prompt – Crew Roles – 300 words

Read through these Crew Roles for drama production then Developing a Crew and write about something that surprised and/or excited you.

I am fascinated in learning about the complexity of dividing production departments and responsibilities. Based on the structural task division, managing crews is incredibly difficult. To achieve one drama production, there are many works to deal with crew management and it has enlightened me how the distribution of workload among the crews is beneficial. Each crew’s role has to be allocated efficiently in order to ensure the smooth production and greater unity in the team. Among crew departments, post-production task allocation appears to be different from what I have known. For instance, the Foley artist, who is in charge of producing and recording sound effect to fit in different movements or visual object, has grabbed my attention. I have never heard about this position before and I have thought that sound effects are extracted from natural sound only and the sound manager will be responsible for it. This reading has explained me well and clear my doubt.

Developing a crew demands more efforts than what I have thought, and one of the most surprising information for me is crew selection with experience. My understanding is that the way of recruiting crews for drama production is different from choosing staff to work in a company. Despite undergoing many job requirements, all crews have to show their eternal preferences as well as their personal traits that have to suit the job environment and conditions. Most importantly, crews have to rehearse with other team members before officially being selected though they have experienced for many years. This is beyond what I have known so far. It seems to me that to become a member of the film production, each crew must obtain the high-quality standard of both personal attitudes and capabilities. This indicates that the job selection processes appear to be so tough and it demands all crews to show passionate commitment to handle the work as a team.

  1. Keyboard shortcuts.

Most applications reserve keyboard shortcuts for the functions that you use most often. It is really good to learn all of these as it will speed up your editing and additionally alert you to functions that the software developers and other users find important. (You can learn much about the software by looking at keyboard shortcuts). New wording (see email): Find the keyboard shortcuts for the film editing software you use and describe 2 or 3 functions (or more is encouraged) that you’ve never used before and describe why these functions will be invaluable to your editing.

I have never used Adobe Premiere Pro to edit the video before and I find out that many shortcut keys are useful for users. Personally, there are four important shortcuts to improve efficiency and to work on multitasks, one of which is Cmd+/. This shortcut key is to create Bin in the project. The Bin is similar to the folder, it helps users to organise files for editing neatly and efficiently. For instance, when I was working on expertise editing, I created Bin by using the shortcut to place my raw files including footage, music, and sequences. Without Bin, my files would be messy and disorganised, which may become a disaster if I want to find footages for editing.

The best way to import file is to use Cmd+I. Users cannot use Adobe Premiere Pro without importing files, and it is undeniable that using this shortcut is quite useful and easy, not to mention time saving.  Another vital shortcut key is Cmd+X. This tool is to cut the footage or music while users are editing. This shortcut will provide users with a convenient and fast editing because it is commonly used for cutting the usable footage from one place to another place while editing sequence. Last week, I used this shortcut to select only good footages for my expertise exercise and it was so quick for me to arrange the needed footages together.

Ripple Delete is extremely crucial for editing and its shortcut key is Shit+Forward Delete. Users do not have to waste time in connecting footages. Normally, when users split or trim the footage, there will be a gap between one footage and another. If users spend time to drag footage together, it is time-consuming and sometimes complicated. The best way is to use this shortcut or users can double click on the blank space between the two footages.

  1. Prompt – A scene – 400 words

Look at this scene from Martin Scorsese’s 1976 film Taxi Driver. In your own words talk about why you think the Scorsese has made the choices he has. This is not a test of your film knowledge we are just keen to get you to start deconstructing, analysing and reflecting. Attempt to write about the production design, camera work, the shots, the performances and the edit.

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One of the shot extracted from the scene in the film called “Taxi Driver”.

With regard to production design, the producer tends to work collaboratively with the team crews to design sets, to select location, and to choose actors and costumes. The production designer has displayed the constructive sets with photos and banners of Palantine and some messages, which allows audiences to assume the possible scenario of the film. Audiences are able to understand that the film might be relevant to politics.  Selecting the corner and see-through glasses building as the location is to enable the male protagonist to see the female character chatting with another man from the window that was why the male actor dared to approach the female character abruptly. The film producer appears to establish the well-organised location to link with the film message. In relation to selecting actors and costumes, the producer has made decision based on the script. The actress is beautiful, which reflects the written script and the taxi driver ‘s face and personality show the naughty character in the film. Costumes selection is prepared properly showing nice actors’ appearance to fit the script.

The producer has used many cameras to shoot this scene and integrated various shooting approaches to make the scene perfect. There are at least three camera operators filming from different angles and shots. The producer appears to use various techniques to make the film become more artistic by panning, tilting, and tracking the camera. The combination of wide shot, over shoulder medium shot and close up shot and keeping camera rolling during the conversation have made the film become more lively and sophisticated. This can show the advancement of technology and method to produce the movie and also provide audiences with different experiences of watching different shots.

The performance has done greatly and each actor is professional and well-trained. The protagonists competently perform their duties during the shooting with natural facial expression, eyes contact, and verbal language. The intention of producing the movie is to make the character’s act as real, and in this scene the producer has clearly proved that the three characters have remarkable ability to perform professionally.

The creativity of editing this scene has been done with considerable efforts. From one plot to another was linked smoothly and even illustrated the story behind. The sound was sharp and clear, which could explain the audience well about the ongoing discussion between the two actors. The music seems to be romantic and match with the scene in which the audiences can feel as they are acting. This can be the purpose of the producer to keep the audience awake and to create the pleasant environment in the film.

 

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How to Improve Your Blog?

Hootsuite, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Facebook and Blog are seen to be popular among social media users currently, and based on my experience in producing these social media platforms for Melbourne Noir project, blogging is the main challenge.

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Blog Issues

Blog can provide both readers and bloggers with many benefits including exchanging knowledge and ideas (Koning, 2013), improving soft and hard skills (Cangiano, 2012; Hazari et al., 2013), enhancing communication skills (Fowler and Thomas, 2015), building professional networks and self’s reputation (Problogger, 2012), and reflecting self-learning (Muncy, 2014). However, Blogging can be quite challenging for a beginner. Designing content, writing in an attractive way, and using photography and video are the main obstacles I have encountered, which can hinder the improvement of my Blog.

Selecting Content

The problem associated with content delivery is that I have no idea what is the most fascinating issue I should post on my Blog. This can be seen as the conflict between blogger’s interest and the reader’s. Snell (2015) argues that writing Blog without main purpose can be problematic which can lead to the ambiguity of designing Blog content. To deal with this, Patel (2015) suggests that each blogger has to know his/her target audience, and make a prompt decision on content sharing. Having clear focus of each blogpost can grab reader’s attention and increase readership (Klems, 2012). Normally, I have prioritised my personal interest rather than thinking of the audience’s and this might somehow make my Blog become more self-oriented. Identifying potential audience perhaps help bloggers to shape the angle of the content, but they might have some challenges if they do not have knowledge and experiences to fulfill audience’s demands. Therefore, for my future Blog, I would prefer choosing a combination contents between writing information that relates to my expertise and serves a specific group of audience.

Writing Style

Another issue regarding blogging is the ability to write attractively. Due to my limited knowledge and experience of blogging, writing Blog to post interestingly is problematic. I do not know where to start and how to make it flow well. I sometimes write blogpost without thinking of the main idea that I intent to convey message to the public and this leads to misunderstanding and unclear structure. Clark (2016) identified three important writing problems, which includes the way to start up writing, to link idea together and to finish. Increasing more reading and using simple language can help bloggers enhance the structure of their writing gradually (Rakt, 2016). Besides, daily writing is more likely to boost the blogger’s confidence in writing various subjects critically and structurally. Thus, I will learn to improve my writing by practices and by reading a diversity of articles, others’ blogposts, books or journals although it might be time-consuming.

Using Photo and Video

The usage of photo and video in Blog is demanding as I am a new blogger. Capturing a good quality photo or filming video requires skills and it is one of my loopholes. Working on Melbourne Noir project, I could not think of creative photograph frames for my Blog. Mills (2007) explains that a combination of video and photo posting on Blog can attract more readers because audiences are more likely to explore something new and different. Visualising blogpost by using photos can also promote blog’s popularity and credibility (Klems, 2012) and catch readers’ attention (Bloggingpro, 2013). Pidgeon (2014) also recommends a few techniques, two of which are deciding on what to shoot, and following rule of thirds. These tips seem to be practically useful for me and I believe that by having a mixture of text, photo and video can make my Blog become more professional and successful though it may require more efforts.

 

References:

Bloggingpro. (2013): 5 Creative Blog Design Strategies to Attract Viewers to Your Blog. Retrieved on 20 July 2016 from http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2013/10/01/5-creative-blog-design-strategies-you-can-attract-viewers-to-your-blog/

Cangiano, A. (2012): Why Every Professional Should Consider Blogging. Retrieved on 24 July 2016 from http://technicalblogging.com/why-every-professional-should-consider-blogging/

Clark, B. (2016). The 5-Step Process that Solves 3 Painful Writing Problems. Retrieved 23 July 2016 from http://www.copyblogger.com/writing-process/

Fowler, K and Thomas, V.L. (2015). Creating a Professional Blog: The Impact of Student Learning Styles on Perceptions of Learning. Journal of Marketing Education, 37 (3), 181-189.

Hazari, S., Brown, C. O., & Rutledge, R. (2013). Investigating marketing students’ perceptions of active learning and social collaboration in blogs. Journal of Education for Business, 88, 101-108.

Klems, B. A. (2012). The 12 Dos and Don’ts of Writing a Blog. Retrieved on 28 July 2016 from http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/the-12-dos-and-donts-of-writing-a-blog

Koning, D. M. (2013). Hello world! Challenges for blogging as anthropological outreach. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 19 (2), 394–397

Mills, A. (2007). Blogging: Lessons and Challenges. Legal Information Management, 7(4), 236-238

Muncy, J. A. (2014). Blogging for reflection: The use of online journals to engage students in reflective learning. Marketing Education Review, 24, 101-113.

Problogger. (2012). 8 Reasons Why Students Should Blog. Retrieved on 26 July 2016 from http://www.problogger.net/8-reasons-why-students-should-start-a-blog/

Patel, N. (2015). 4 Simple Ways to Choose the Best Blog Topics for Your Audience. Retrieved on 26 July 2016 from http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/choose-the-best-blog-topics#sm.000001wpvvitgt1f2av6g53jimx4e

Pidgeon, E. (2014). How to take great photos even on your cell phone. Retrieved on 27 July 2016 from  http://blog.ted.com/how-to-take-great-photos-even-on-your-cell-phone/

Rakt, van de, M. (2016). Obtain an attractive writing style. Retrieved 29 July 2016 from  https://yoast.com/attractive-writing-style-blog/

Snell, S. (2015). 5 Common Blogging Problems, and How to Overcome Them. Retrieved 26 July 2016  from http://www.vandelaydesign.com/common-blogging-problems/

Facebook Friend Becomes Her Lover

Aged 26, Chhim Sreyneang, has found her love with A French-Spanish guy via Facebook. 

Chhim Sreyneang,26, is a Lifestyle Reporter at The Phnom Penh Post Newspaper/Photo by Sun Narin

Chhim Sreynearng is a girl who likes the way of living as the foreigner does. Even her style of love is foreigner’s unlike other Cambodian girls. She has known a 45-year-old man, Clane Garr who is the cloth designer based in Phnom Penh through Facebook. Their love has sustained for nearly nine months.
Chhim Sreyneang is telling  how can she meet her love?
Sreyneang is now working as the Lifestyle reporter at the Phnom Penh Post newspaper.

The happy couple at a party

Chhim Sreyneang and her lover at the party/Photo from Facebook

She says that she gets on well with his lover and she is in the process of understanding each other. Moreover, she is planning to marry him in two more years.

She expresses the reasons why does she love her lover?

Exciting and adventure experience at Chambok Community Forest

It is not the first time for me to go to Chambok, but this time it had provided me with a very unforgettable experience and memory I have never had in my life.

Last month, I went to Chambok community forest to do a story for joining UNDP Journalism Writing competition.  My friends, Mesa and Youy, have accompanied me to go there. We have taken a taxi to reach there since there is no bus. You know what! The taxi driver stopped to pick up other passengers along the road almost every five minutes. Have not got the destination yet, we were dropped to take another taxi in the middle of the way. I just wish the diver will not do like this to me again. Then we got Chambok.

At the first day, when we got Chambak, everything had been arranged for us both home stay and food. We have rent the bicycles to ride, and we have walked almost 3km to go to Chambak waterfall, but we have not reached there since we were so tired and exhausted, and it was time for me to interview my sources.

In the evening, we had a nice dinner cooked by a villager there. After that we come back to our home stay around 7pm. We had a bath together since we used well water. Then we have a rest.

Second day, in the early morning under the drizzle, we’ve taken a motor to go to the foot of a mountain. Then we walked into the forest with a guide to see the activity of community people taking forest production. We walked almost 8km to go and come back.

Around 1pm, we’ve left Chambak to go back to Phnom Penh. Again, we have a very old and bad smell taxi because we have no choice to choose. The smell of sea fish started spreading, my friends and I feel dizzy, but we have to be patient. The scary feeling happens to us again.

This time the driver did not drop us in the middle of the way, but he was eating lunch while he was driving. Ooh, I feel very afraid of having an accident. I told him that “I feel so scare, please slow down the speed,”, and then he answered me back that “No worry, I am a skillful driver, I always eat lunch when I drive the car otherwise I will hungry,” when he said like this I stop saying. Everything went smoothly. We got Phnom Penh. But I have to take a motor taxi to go to my home in Takhmao town which is far from Phnom Penh around 20 km.

Again, I was dropped by motor taxi in the middle of the way and I have to take other motor taxi instead. Imagine!!! That is very unforgettable experience for me. Anyways, at the end I have produced a story for my competition, and it was a nice trip for me since I can test many strange things and have a truly adventure trip.

enjoy seeing some photos below!!!

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SRI in Kampong Cham Province

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Photo by: Teip Seiha

By: Vorn Makara

Under the light of the sun around 3o’clock, a man wearing white shirt and short trouser with yellow hat, is transplanting rice seeding in his own farm with many other villagers and CEDAC staffs. Pum Tak, 25, a farmer, is living in San Tey 2 village, Kak commune, Ponhea Kraek district, Kampong Cham province. Having got the training from CEDAC about Ecological System of Rice Intensification (SRI), he starts practicing this new system on his own farm this year.

“If I get the high rice products this year, next year I will continue doing this new system [SRI] on my whole farm land,” said Pum Tak.

After getting the fund support from European Union (EU) around 2,333,709.00 Euro, Plan Cambodia cooperates with CEDAC to implement a five-year project titled “Promoting Climate Resilient Livelihoods for Small-Scale Farmers in Most vulnerable Dry Land Areas in Siem Reap and Kampong Cham province.” This project starts from January 2011 until December 2015, and it will implement on 325 villages, 31 communes cross 6 districts in Siem Reap and Kampong Cham province. There are around 15,000 small-scale farmer families will get direct benefits from this project.

This project aims to improve the capacity of farmers and the relevant local authorities to respond effectively to climate change, drought and soil degradation in a manner that will ensure a sustainable increase if their agricultural product, eradicate of extreme poverty and hunger among small-scale farmer families in dry land area.

“We want to increase the small-scale farmer families’ living standard in Kampong Cham and Siem Reap province from 25% to 60%. Second, we want to reduce the poverty from 26% to 20 %, and we also want to reduce their hunger from 6 months to 1 month,” said Mey Monysetha, Program officer at Plan Cambodia.

Providing people living in Dambae and Ponhea Kraek district at Kampong Cham province with SRI training is one of the plans that CEDAC is doing in order to reach the five-year project. This year is the beginning of training farmers there to practice system of Rice Intensification (SRI); therefore, there are not many villagers using SRI. Some villagers, who have visited other villagers doing SRI, are testing this system since he thinks it is beneficial.

Morl  Meourn, Ta Prang village chief, has been to Prey Veng Province to visit the farm practicing SRI methods said, “ I think this system is good, and I also recommend other villagers to use SRI technique in farming,” adding that, currently he have tested SRI on his land 20 A.

However, Chem Kheang, villager in San Tey 2, said that she is happy to see Plan Cambodia cooperated with CEDAC in helping the farmers by training SRI technique, but she has not practiced this system yet. “If villagers here use this system in their farm and get high rice production, next year I will test this system on my land,” she added.

Based on the experiment from CEDAC, using SRI in farming at Takeo and Prey Veng province, farmers can get the double rice production. Moreover, they spend less rice seeds by reducing from 60 kg to 15 kg per hectare, but it requires hard working and patience.

Hour Sreng, Program officer in CEDAC based in Kampong Cham said that farmers using SRI can get the rice production around three tons per hectare, but if they do traditional farming, they can get only 1 ton per hectare. “In Kampong Cham is not different from these provinces [Prey Veng and Takeo], farmers will get the high rice production because CEDAC has already experimented the land in these area,” “we just adjust what farmer are doing [traditional farming], we do not give the new technique for them,” he said.

SRI has been practiced in some provinces and it has provided farmers with the good result but most of farmers in Kampong Cham province are still reluctant in adopting and using this system since they are not familiar yet.

“Farmers here don’t pay much attention in practicing SRI because they have lots of lands and other works besides farming. Moreover, they normally use traditional farming technique. And, SRI spends more time than traditional farming,” said, Beurn Sokh, Council of Dambae district.

He also continued that, among 85% of farmers in Dambae district, there are a small number of farmers using SRI methods. “The rest of the farmers will use SRI, unless they see the real results, getting high rice productions and spend less time,” he said.

By enabling high rice yield with reducing water requirement and low price, the numbers of farmers using SRI methods start increasing. According to the research from CEDAC in 2008, there are more than 100, 000 Cambodia farmers have involved in SRI methods. There are 14 steps in using SRI methods. Yet, the main thing is to select the good rice seeds for sowing. It is true that there will be a challenge for farmers in changing the habits of doing traditional farming to use SRI methods, but when the results come out with a high rice production making them get lots of benefits, they will adapt that system.

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