In-Depth Blog Post #4

This is now my forth post, and I’ve got to say, I think I’ve improved a ton since the last blog post. I’ve managed to hit that octave note that I’ve been gunning for, and even played some more notes past that. Lately, I’ve been playing a few songs from a beginner’s trumpet book that my mentor lent me, and it has been going quite well. It took some practice to get used to changing notes quickly, but once I got the hang of it, it was only a matter of being able to play the notes. So my mentor actually suggested I find a few scores online to play so that we could start working on intonation and sound. I’ve also started recording myself playing the trumpet every Saturday to show as evidence of my work, and so that I can listen to my sound and tone better to help improve. A link to these recordings will be near the bottom.

What has been my most difficult mentoring challenge so far?  Why?

There are not many challenges that we are currently facing (apart from the fact that we cannot meet at the moment), but if I were to choose the most difficult challenge that I have had so far, it would be getting a consistent sound. Since I have just started getting used to the trumpet and all of its notes, producing a nice consistent sound is the next step. This means that I have to be able to play without having my notes “waver” or change in tone all too much while attempting to play with a good quality sound. But this has been proving quite challenging for two reasons. First off, I need to be able to play and recognize the good quality sound that the trumpet can produce. So far, my mentor has not focused too much on sound quality since being able to play the notes always comes first. Therefore, I don’t really know how to produce the sound that I am aiming for. Second, it’s hard to teach/show how to play a good sound. It doesn’t matter is I’ve perfectly memorized the good quality sound if I don’t know how to even get there. Luckily, my mentor is very good and thorough when he teaches, so I’m not too worried, but I will have to work quite hard in order to get there.

What is working well? Why?

My mentor is not really structuring our sessions and he is instead making my practices a lot more flexible. He doesn’t really give me assignments or sets goals for me and rather leaves most of it to me. He believes that allowing me to choose what I want to practice is better than him choosing what I should practice and I think that it is working very well. This is not to say that he doesn’t guide me in any way, or doesn’t do much, he simply gives me choices on what I feel like practicing at that moment. If I want to develop my range, he helps me grow my range. If I want to learn songs, he provides me with music to play and even plays along with me. I personally really like this approach as it helps me keep motivated in learning. Nothing feels forced on me and it even helps develop my own motivation to practice at home.

What could be working better?  How can you make sure this happens?

There is one aspect of my mentorship that I’ve constantly had a bit of trouble with, and that would be my own practices at home. It’s not that I don’t know what to do, or that I can’t do anything without my mentor, it’s just that I can’t practice for long periods of time without my lips getting tired. My mentor has specifically warned me that if I strain myself too much once my lips get tired, then I will end up developing bad playing habits. So I’ve had to keep my practices quite short everyday in order to avoid this. But the only way to develop my muscles is to simply practice often. Now that I have a lot of freetime, I have been practicing everyday to develop these muscles, and I will tell you that it is a lot of work. However, it’s a lot of fun to play familiar songs so I’ve been enjoying my practices rather than finding them as a chore to do everyday.

 

Recordings:

These recordings are actually louder than you would expect, so I suggest putting your volume down before starting the clips.

March 14

March 21

March 28

 

So far, this has been a ton of fun to do and may even be my favourite project ever. I’ve also got something to do to pass the time so that’s a bonus I never asked for! I’m going to thank my Mr. Kwong once again for being such a wonderful mentor and for helping me get to this point. I now need to find some new music to learn, so I will go do that. In the meantime, stay safe, wash your hands, and I will see you in the next video post!

In-Depth Blog Post #3

We are now on our third In-Depth blog post of the year. So far, my mentor and I have been getting along quite well and I have learned quite a lot from him. Getting the hang of trumpet has been quite difficult so far, but my mentor has been very patient with me as he also knew the hardships of learning a new instrument quite well. We have met two times now, and during both sessions, I have been taught a ton about getting started with the trumpet. I’ve been able to play a few notes now, but they don’t sound very nice in any way. However, my mentor is suggesting that I simply just focus on getting any sound out of the trumpet for each note as we can more later refine the notes as we go on.

What went particularly well during your mentoring sessions?

There is a reason why I like my mentor a lot, and that reason is because he is easy to understand. He explains everything to me in a very clear and concise matter so that I am able to understand what he is trying to explain to me. In fact, teaching someone how to play a brass or woodwind instrument is one of the more difficult things to explain as it is more a skill that a student (or mentee in this case) learns from trial and error rather than from knowledge. So in order to make it easy on me, my mentor tries to come up with a number of different analogies that I can relate to so that I can more understand the general “feeling” that he is trying to teach me. And when he is explaining anything in this way, he is much easier to listen to as I clearly understand what he is attempting to convey to me.

Another reason why our mentoring sessions went well is because my mentor provides me with a number of different resources to use when I am practicing at home. Since we only meet about once every 1 – 2 weeks, he does his best to provide me with as many different resources as he can so that I am able to have successful practice sessions at home. For example, he suggested to me a number of different YouTube channels for me to base my playing on so that I could improve my playing at home. He specifically went through different channels in his free time to find people who were professional, explained the concepts easily, and most importantly, were concise. My mentor also provided me with a band book for trumpet that I could play different melodies from if I was getting tired of all of my technical work I was doing.

What relationship challenges did you face?

We actually did not face many relationship challenges at all. My mentor is an extremely patient person as he is kind and gentle with his words and is never harsh or even strict in any way. This way, I am under little to no stress while still being motivated to practice even more than I already am because I want to show him that what he is doing is worth his time. Now that I think about it, I can’t even come up with any challenges that our relationship had. I am able to effectively communicate with him as both of us check our emails regularly for school, we are comfortable with having our sessions together, and overall, we know each other quite well as my mentor tends to prompt me to talk about myself sometimes so that we can get to know each other better.

What learning challenges emerged?

The biggest challenge for me at the moment, is trying to get a good embouchure so that I can actually play all the notes. So far, I’ve been having trouble with playing a lot of the higher notes mostly because I used to play the french horn. Although there are similarities between the two instruments, there are also many differences. The biggest difference between the two, in my opinion, is the size of the mouth piece and embouchure. Due to the french horns, small mouthpiece, as well as the long, yet narrow piping, the embouchure of the french horn was much more lip based. While on the other hand, the trumpet has a bigger mouthpiece, as well as a shorter and wider piping, causing the embouchure to be a lot bigger, more loose, and based more on the “air pressure” inside your mouth. So the way that the different notes are reached, is quite different. Although trumpet is supposed to be easier, the fact that I am more used to french horn makes it that much more difficult for me.

 

Well, I’ll keep going at it with everything I’ve got, with the hopes that I am ready to go by In-Depth. But with the amazing mentor I have, I don’t think that it’ll be achievable. I really could not have done this without him as he really does make everything that much easier to understand. Thank you Mr. Kwong, for helping me get to this point, and I hope we can keep going, even further beyond.

Plus Ultra.

~ MJ

In-Depth Post #2

This is the second blog post for In depth and so far, I have not gotten too much progress just yet. My mentor and I have only met up once so far to simply greet each other and have the forms filled out. But I really do like my mentor a lot. My mentor’s name is Daniel Kwong and is a music teacher at Kwayhquitlum Middle School. He was and still is one of my favourite teachers that I have had thus far. In fact, when I was leaving Kwayhquitlum, he actually offered to mentor me if I needed a mentor for any project that I had to work on. So I decided to take him up on his offer and here we are now. However, in terms of the In Depth project, we have only been able to meet up once. And because he is a teacher, I can only meet him about once per week because our different schedules. Probably the biggest issue that is preventing me from meeting him more times a week is the fact that school ends at roughly 3:00 for him while school ends at 3:40 for me.

1. How did your mentor gain their experience/ expertise?

Again, my mentor is a music teacher who works in the district and so his knowledge and experience around music is very big. But he is also the band conductor at Kway as well. So as a band conductor, he has a very solid understanding of all of the different instruments in the band to the point where he has the ability to teach just about any instrument in the band.

2. What were those experiences like for your mentor?

He really enjoys music as a whole. He is very passionate about music and likes to learn new things based around that subject area as well. So he truly enjoys teaching music and conducting the school band and choirs. Even is the band does struggle once in a while, his passion and care drives him to help each person in the band become better players and helps in different external ways as well. For example, he sometimes spends hours after school just simply maintaining each person’s band vests so that they can look their best on concert days.

3. What wisdom have you gained from your mentor so far?

Although we have only met once so far, he has helped me tremendously in my progress on learning the trumpet. He is very good at describing and explaining things, so I was able to grasp how to play the trumpet. My mentor knows that I know how to play the french horn and tries his best to relate everything on the trumpet to the french horn so that I can relate his explanations to something that I am familiar with. For example, he helped describe the emboushure of the trumpet by saying that I had to create an emboushure that is about 3 times larger than the one on the french horn.

4. What have you learned so far, in terms of facilitation strategies, that might contribute to your own development as a mentor?

So far, from what I can tell, I think that one of the most important things to keep in mind as a mentor is that you need to relate to your mentee. You need to keep in mind their own experiences and knowledge so that you can build and help grow their experience using their own knowledge as a base. In other words, you must keep in mind what your mentee does and does not know. So for example, if your mentee is a very skilled sketcher who is looking to learn graphic arts, it would benefit them for you to somehow relate graphic arts to sketching so that he/she can have a much easier time understanding the different ideas and concepts. And along the same idea, you must make sure that your mentee has the proper knowledge to understand you teachings. For example, if you’re trying to teach your mentee how to write novels, but he doesn’t know how to read, then it will be way too confusing for the mentee. He/she will not understand anything you are saying to him and it will just end in a waste of time. But making sure not to reteach anything to the mentee is also important as it may also result in wasted time.

Anyhow, I really hope that my In-Depth project will go well.

Myung Joon~

Evergreen Logo Design

For our graphic arts 9 class, we were asked to design a new logo for the Evergreen Cultural Centre. So using the skills that we have been taught, we created logos that were eye catching, simple, and memorable.

Before going into this assignment, we were taught some basic skills and tools to use and apply in photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. We were also taught about some basic fundamentals for creating logos. I think of myself as a pretty good problem solver which actually helped a ton during this project because there were quite a bit of instances when I wanted to do a certain thing to my logo like adding mixed colours or cool design ideas. But I didn’t really know how to do these specific things. So I had to find alternate ways (using the tools I knew how to use) to create similar effects in order to fulfill my ideas.

There were a couple challenges that I faced during this assignment. The first challenge I faced was coming up with ideas. Our teacher gave us a couple examples before the project to help spark ideas, but it instead made it harder for me to come up with a original idea. I didn’t want to copy any of the logos that were presented to us, and so I had a tough time coming up with logo ideas. Another challenge was actually finding ways to turn these ideas into actual logos in photoshop. I had to figure out ways to give my logos certain aesthetics and to implement ideas using the tools I had at my disposal.

Link to Image

In-Depth Introduction

For my In-Depth Project this year, I will be learning how to play the trumpet. In my opinion, the trumpet is a really cool instrument that has a strong and clear sound. It is usually the star of any band or orchestra as it usually has the most solos. Learning the trumpet has been something that has been on my bucket list for quite awhile now. Back in middle school, I really wanted to play the trumpet in our band, but was asked to play the french horn instead. I will admit, I did have a pretty good time playing the french horn, but in the back of my mind, I also wanted to play the trumpet. That wish continued to linger in my head as I progressed to high school. I was hoping to join band for the sole purpose of learning to play the trumpet, but I decided otherwise simply because it took up an elective. There were other courses I really wanted to take, but I did regret it a little. But now that I have the opportunity, I chose to finally learn this instrument. There are a whole lot of songs that I look forward to playing like “Floral Fury” and “Crimson Bow and Arrow” which are both songs that are heavy on the trumpet.

I hope to achieve my goal with the help of a wonderful mentor and be able to play the trumpet with good sound and intonation by the end of the school year. However, I do not currently have a set mentor. I have a couple people in mind, but I have yet to contact anyone. So therefore, the meeting and time of when we are going to meet has not been decided as of now.

Welp, lets just hope that I’m able to find a mentor soon so that I can start learning this wonderful instrument.

~MJ

Introducing: Masahiro Sakurai

https://www.google.com/urlsa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Ftwitter.com%2Fnin_smashbros&psig=AOvVaw0VM3G2taQJRo6HldRlqnvP&ust=1572381474079000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCLCi_8znv-UCFQAAAAAdAAAAABAD

“The pain goes away, but your work always remains” – Masahiro Sakurai

It’s quite hard to receive special recognition as a game developer these days. Now that the gaming industry has grown so much, so many people are getting involved in it and producing new games. There are just too many different people who bring different ideas to the table to the point where there isn’t enough recognition to go around for everyone to have. But even if you do end up getting recognition, that recognition ends up moving on to the next new developer in only a few days. However, there are a few developers who have been recognized and are still remembered to this day as geniuses in their own fields. Among these geniuses lies my eminent person, the mastermind behind both Kirby and the Smash Bros series, Masahiro Sakurai. 

There are many game developers that I could’ve chosen instead of Masahiro Sakurai, like the creator of Mario: Shigeru Miyamoto, or the creators of Cuphead: Marija and Ryan Moldenhauer. But there is one major difference in mindset that sets him apart from all of the other developers. This difference is that he truly cares about his game. This may come as a surprise, but there are tons of big-shot developers who don’t care about their games as much. They usually care more about the amount of money they earn than how good the game really is. If the original game that they had created does well, then they make sequel after sequel until they eventually burn out the series and basically end up “killing the series”. But unlike these types of people, Sakurai puts in effort and care into all of the games he creates. He works himself to death just to create a game that he can be proud of selling to his audience. He also does not like making sequels to his games because he believes that each game should be different and original. This mindset really made me come to like him as a game developer and a person since he also seems like a very humble person. 

I believe that a trait that Sakurai and I both share is that we are both very hard working and determined. Even during his hardest times, Sakurai never gave up and always worked through the pain in order to complete what he had set out to do. He also works himself to death every time he works on a project to ensure that the game is up to the audience’s standards and to ensure that he is putting out a game that he is truly proud of. Although I didn’t go through as many hardships as he has, I do think that I am hard working and determined. When I set out to do something, I always try to ensure that I finish the task before moving on. It may be because I am stubborn and not know when to give up, but I still persevere until I am positive that I cannot make it any further. 

I think that Sakurai almost perfectly exemplifies most of my goals. The fact that he exemplified my goals so well may have been an unnoticed factor that affected my choice in the back of my head. He does lots of presentations in front of huge audiences from time to time since he is a famous developer at Nintendo. He also is a risk taker of sorts since he tries all sorts of new ideas for his games and implements new ways to play games without knowing if that new way would even work or not. We can also assume that he has good communication and time management skills since these are both very important skills that a person needs in order to succeed in any kind of group projects. 

During my preliminary research, I tried my best to find someone who I am quite similar to. So I don’t think that there are many barriers preventing me from connecting with my eminent person if at all. We are both Asian, have similar interests, and are of the same gender. Faith and religion doesn’t really have anything to do with Sakurai’s eminence. The only barrier that I can think of is geography since he lives in Japan while I am living here in Canada, but this won’t really affect my speech in anyway.

Sakurai has brought tons of different ideas to the gaming industry as a whole like the platform fighter genre. But the biggest thing that he brought into the gaming industry was probably his mindset towards creating games. As I mentioned before, his mindset of having to create original games may stick with more people from now on, and reduce the amount of sequels made. And if sequels are still made, they will most likely have new, fun ideas that can make it its own game. Other game developers will hopefully also follow Sakurai’s example of putting his all into every single game that he creates to create more high quality games in the future. His ideas, mindset, and beliefs will most likely stick in the industry for many years to come. I think this because all of these things that he brought into the gaming industry was something that already existed. He simply uncovered it for everyone. By this I mean that his mindset and beliefs are the basis of how you create a good game, so in the future if people want to create good games, then they will end up having to follow Sakurai’s example in order to succeed. 

Although he is extremely successful with his games, he also faced many hardships during his time in the gaming industry. In fact, it was due to his successes that he faced these hardships. Many of the companies that Sakurai had worked for always saw lots of potential in him and ended up taking advantage of him. They forced him into project after project even while knowing that he was tired and needed a break. He was also bad at rejecting people, and was pressured to “ruin” his games by creating multiple sequels of them. The most famous example of this was when Satoru Iwata announced the next installment in the Smash Bros series. While this came as a surprise to the audience, it was also a surprise to Sakurai. He was never told that there was going to be a next Smash Bros game, let alone that he was going to be directing it. Sakurai got mad at Iwata for forcing him into a game and asked him why he did that. Then Iwata literally told him that he was forced to threaten him to work on the game because he refused to work on another sequel. Sakurai overcame most of these obstacles just by quitting after his last project. But after going into Nintendo, he’s been having trouble finding time for a break. So he’s simply just been continuing to work extremely hard on his projects while stating, even to the public, that he wants a break after finally finishing Super Smash Bros Ultimate. 

I can clearly tell that Sakurai wants to create a game that he’s proud of based on how much care and attention he puts into all of his games. He also wants to satisfy his audience and company. Another thing he wants and has clearly stated that he wants is a break from his work. I think that he fears disappointing others based on how he puts so much work and effort into all of his games. 

For my next step in my research on Masahiro Sakurai, I want to learn more on his early life since there wasn’t too much information on that topic. He was only recognized after he created Kirby, so his life before that is not as well known. 

 

 

Works Cited

Ashcraft, B. (2019, March 5). Smash Bros. Creator Masahiro Sakurai Works Too Damn Hard. Retrieved from Kotaku: https://kotaku.com/smash-bros-creator-masahiro-sakurai-works-too-damn-har-1833057020

The information from this article mostly informed me on Sakurai’s hardships. All the info on this website is mainly about how hard he works as well as how this is affecting his health. It really helped me understand how Sakurai was feeling. This website especially helped me put more emotion and feeling into my eminent speech so that I could have a more impactful speech.

Braun, E. (2018, June 22). A Brief History of Masahiro Sakurai. Retrieved from Culture of Gaming: https://cultureofgaming.com/a-brief-history-of-masahiro-sakurai/

Gallagher, J. M. (2019, January 21). Super Smash Bros: The Story of Nintendo’s Premier Fighting Franchise. Retrieved from Den of Geek: https://www.denofgeek.com/us/games/super-smash-bros/241515/super-smash-bros-nintendo-history

IMDb. (n.d.). Masahiro Sakurai. Retrieved from IMDb: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0757340/

Khan, I. (2019, March 5). Super Smash Bros. Director Masahiro Sakurai Worked With An IV Drip While Sick. Retrieved from Game Informer: https://www.gameinformer.com/2019/03/05/super-smash-bros-director-masahiro-sakurai-worked-with-an-iv-drip-while-sick

Macdonald, K. (2018, August 8). From Kong to Kirby: Smash Bros’ Masahiro Sakurai on mashing up 35 years of gaming history. Retrieved from The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/games/2018/aug/08/super-smash-bros-ultimate-masahiro-sakurai-35-years-gaming-history-nintendo

Keza Macdonald did a very good job in putting information onto this website. It is extremely informative as there is information on Sakurai’s beginnings, his impacts, his games, and his current standings. There are also a lot of direct quotes that help to make sure that his information is correct and relevant.

Sakurai, M. (n.d.). Super Smash Bros Brawl. (S. Iwata, Interviewer) Retrieved from http://iwataasks.nintendo.com/interviews/#/wii/ssbb/0/0

This is an interview done by Satoru Iwata on Sakurai and their shared experience on Super Smash Bros Brawl. This is the main source where I got information on how Iwata ended up deceiving Sakurai during the Nintendo conference. It gave me lots of info on how they were feeling during this event as well as some details that you won’t be able to get from any other source. This is also a very good source to use since this is all firsthand information.

Shea, B. (2019, January 21). The Origin Of Super Smash Bros. Retrieved from Game Informer: https://www.gameinformer.com/classic/2019/01/21/the-origin-of-super-smash-bros

This website is mostly information on how the Super Smash Bros series began. Most other websites don’t go very in depth on how Sakurai began the series, but this site explains a lot deeper about how Sakurai created this series. This website also has a lot of important information that most other websites don’t know about or don’t bother to include.

VideoGameStoryTime (Director). (2018). Super Smash Bros: The Story of Masahiro Sakurai [Video]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WsUsNCFHkQ

This video gave me a very easy to understand breakdown of Sakurai’s life and it used pictures and images which helped me understand a lot better since I’m a very visual learner. Unlike other sources, this video gave me information about Sakurai himself. Other sites and sources gave me lots of information about Sakurai’s career and his games, and little to no information about his life and himself as a person. So it really helped me when this video told me a little bit about Sakurai himself and why he started game development.

Wikipedia. (2019, November 1). Masahiro Sakurai. Retrieved from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masahiro_Sakurai

Wikipedia. (2019, October 29). Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Retrieved from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Smash_Bros._Brawl#Development

Digital Footprint Assignment

  1. How might your digital footprint affect your future opportunities? Give at least two examples.

You digital footprint could affect your future opportunities in a variety of ways. These could include jobs, friends, and much more. Some employers may look at one’s Social Media to be able to take a glimpse of their true personality. But if the person’s social media ends up having a poor digital footprint, then they may end up not getting hired. It’s almost the same thing with friends. You might make a new friend, but that same friend will probably end up taking a look at your social media. If your social media is made up of posts that are insulting all of your friends, then that new person may just not be your friend anymore.

2. Describe at least three strategies that you can use to keep your digital footprint appropriate and                  safe.

Three strategies that your could use to keep your digital footprint appropriate is by asking yourself, “Would it be ok if my parents were to see this?” and if the answer is yes, then it should be appropriate enough to post online. Another strategy you could use is to T.H.I.N.K. These are five questions to ask yourself to make sure that what you’re posting is safe. They are the following: Is it true? Is it hurtful? Is it Illegal? Is it necessary? Or is it kind? A third strategy you could use is asking someone else. You could ask another person you trust for their opinion on the matter. After all, a second opinion wouldn’t hurt.

3. If you could go back in time, is there anything you would do differently online? Think of what type             of advice you would pass on to your younger self or other students. How could you go about                         explaining it to them?

If I were to go back in time, I don’t think there would be much of a change. I do have social media accounts so that I’m able to see what my friends and other people from around the world are doing, but I don’t actually post anything. However, I do think that I would change how I am when playing online games because I sometimes end up insulting people online. I would tell myself that I should be a bit more patient with other people online so that I can resolve problems in a more peaceful matter.

Categories: Uncategorized

Training Post

You are now going to create your very first post. In a separate tab or browser window, go to your Dashboard on the left and go to  Posts -> Add New.

1) Title – Create a title for your blog post. Your title will be: Digital Footprint Assignment

2) Body – This is where you place your content of the post – text, videos, pictures, etc. Follow the instructions on the Digital Footprint Assignment page to see what questions you need to answer here.

3) Tool Bar – In your toolbar you can “Add Media” and “Add Documents” into your posts, this is the best way to create visual representations. You can also change fonts, hyperlink, etc.

4) Publish – Here is where you control what items are public and private. You can also control when they are published to your website.

5) Categories – Here is where you choose where you want your post to go. This is your digital binder with all of your subjects. Make sure to categorize each post with the relevant subject. E.g. Categories -> English

6) Tags –  Here is where you tag posts with one or two of the most readily applicable Core Competencies. These tags can help you find things quicker on your blog and help you stay organised. E.g. Tag -> creativethinking

7) Publish – When you are done, simply “Publish” it. If it has been edited, press “Republish” to update with the latest version of the content.