The World is Watching

When The Jenna Show first aired in 1998 we weren’t sure how long it would last. The overarching attitudes toward the concept of the show were mixed. Some people loved it, some people hated, and some people didn’t care at all. The first few years saw ups and downs as viewership would climb and plummet overnight for seemingly no reason at all. None of the producers could figure out why our audiences weren’t stable.

We then realized in the third year that our advertising had been lacking. Sure, before the show aired there were ads on television, billboards, busses, you name it. But we assumed that a 24 hour always live show wouldn’t need much advertising at all. Well, we were wrong. Some of the production team made the switch over to advertising, including me. This poster is our most recent ad. It is in circulation around cities and towns all over the world. We like to send them to any place with a television.

Since out first poster was designed in 2001 there has been a yearly advertisement campaign to update the public on Jenna’s current look. These are also great for our archives. Sometimes we do holiday special posters. We have even started a collectable edition that people can redeem for a spot as an extra on the show! This initiative has really bumped up viewership and audience approval. Right now we are at an all time high with a 97% viewership approval! Unfortunately, the other 3% is quite loud.

I was inspired by the poster visual assignments. I wanted to make  poster to show how the rest of the world views Jenna. I chose a picture like this because I didn’t want it to look too smiley and posed, as Jenna isn’t staged in the show. I also new I wanted black and white because I wanted the focus to be all on Jenna and not on the colors of the poster. I also wanted a minimal design for those purposes as well.


The first step is to choose a picture for the poster. Then open a new GIMP window and click and drag the chosen picture into GIMP.

To make the picture black and white, go to image > mode > grayscale.

I then made the picture a little brighter by going to colors > brightness-contrast and sliding the brightness bar up to 33. Click OK to apply this setting.

I was clicking around different GIMP features and came across the Posterize effect. I really like it and decided to keep it, as I am making a poster. To get the effect go to colors > posterize.

Once you click posterize, slide the bar until the image is how you want it. Click OK to apply this effect.

To add a text box click the A icon in the toolbox. Then click and drag on the picture to make a text box. 

To change the style of the text, highlight the text. You can increase font size by the middle box, change the text color by the bottom right black box, and change to italics using the A button. I also added another text box to the bottom of the poster to tell information about the show. I used the same process as this text uses.

To insert the logo I made in another assignment, I just clicked and dragged it into the window like my first step. If it doesn’t show up, try to add a new layer by going to layer > new layer and then dragging the logo on.

To move an object around the screen select the move tool, this looks like arrows pointing in four directions from the toolbox. Then click and drag the desired object. To resize and object, select the scale tool, which is a box with a diagonal arrow through it, from the toolbox. This will open a new window with scale measurements. The move tool is highlighted below on top, while the scale tool is highlighted below on the bottom.


To save the final product go to file > save as. To save the file as a .png or .jpeg go to file > export and select the preferred settings.


Sh-Sh-Sh-Shake it Up

For my final visual assignment I chose Switch Up The Mood, worth 2 stars.

Change the mood or tone of a photograph by altering the contrast, brightness, hue, saturation, exposure, etc. You do not have to change all of those things about the photo, but you can if you would like to. Experiment. Don’t be afraid to take it to the extremes, and don’t be afraid to be subtle.

This assignment jumped out to me again because of the featured picture. I also want to work more in GIMP to try to familiarize myself with the software. I expect to be using GIMP to alter images for daily creates in the future so I chose this as another chance to practice.

I like to edit pictures for Instagram as well, and can spend upwards of an hour editing just one picture. I thought this would be a nice assignment to end the week on, because editing photos is relaxing to me. It has also always intrigued me how with simple color changes in a photo how it changes the whole feel of it. I guess put simply, it switches up the mood.


The Original Photo

The Mood Switch

 I chose a picture with a neutral mood to it because I wanted to see how different I could make it, and I feel like making a picture of people smiling a different mood is more difficult. In this straight-faced picture I was happy, but my goal was to make the picture seem sad.

I started by importing my photo to GIMP. I first manipulated the color balance of the photo. I chose Colors > Color Balance and proceeded to adjust each color level. I did this for the Midtones and Highights sections. The main effect from this was removing the warmth from my skin, therefore making me seem less happy.

Next, I decreased the Brightness and increased the Contrast to make the overall appearance darker and less lively. Click on Colors > Brightness-Contrast and adjust the slider accordingly.

Finally, go to Colors > Desaturate. I chose the Average option because it gave me my desired “sad” effect.

Then Save your image, and you’re done!

I feel like the mood switches from a photo that emanates warmth and happiness to one that makes you wonder if the subject in the photo is alright.

Too Close For Comfort

Take a close up picture of something as see if people can guess what it is. Try doing the skin or outside of something that would make it hard for someone to guess!

The That’s Not What I Expected visual assignment (3 stars) grabbed my attention because of the cover photo it used in the description. I love photos where an ordinary object looks completely different because of an angle or how close or far away it is.



Although my photo isn’t the best quality (my iPhone can only do so much) I have never looked that closely at *SPOILERS AHEAD* whole black pepper kernels. I thought that even though it’s rather obvious what the picture is, it is still a new perspective so I stuck with this. Another part of this assignment is to have classmates guess what the photo is. I decided to post on my twitter asking people to respond, and I included the assignment tag and ds106. When people have responded to my tweet I will update this post linking to responses.


While there aren’t really any difficult instructions here is what I did:

  1. Look around to find something interesting to photograph
  2. Get as close as you can to said something interesting and take a picture of it. I actually ended up cropping my picture to make it appear closer because my phone couldn’t focus up close. Cameras shouldn’t have this problem.
  3. Upload the photo to Twitter and ask the twitterverse to let you know what it thinks!


While taking this picture I was searching my kitchen high and low for something unique that I could also get close to with my phone and have it still be in focus. All the while, my mom is taking a nap in the next room, so I had to be very quiet. I cannot say how many fruits, vegetables, and herbs I picked up and brought close to my lens testing to see if they would focus. None of them focused. I then tried to take an up close picture of a lit candle. Alas, I couldn’t get close enough to the flame for it to be a mystery without burning myself or my phone.

I was about to settle for an onion, when my eyes happened upon the pepper grinder. I thought “perfect!” and proceeded to to empty the whole kernels onto a paper towel. Mind you, my mom is still sleeping (she works very hard and deserves a nap every once in a while so I am trying to be quiet). After taking the picture I then had to return the pepper to its place. This was the hardest part of this assignment.

I am a very clumsy girl. Very. As I was shaping the paper towel into a funnel to expertly guide the pepper back into the grinder, I dropped them. Every last kernel scattered across the counter. I gasped. MOM! Don’t wake up! (Of course she didn’t wake up it was just a few pepper kernels) but to me, in our silent house, it sounded like several bombs had just gone off.


Through My Eye(s)

For my second visual assignment I chose Can You See What I See, worth 3.5 stars. I followed one of the tutorials already posted on the ds106 site. I used all the steps for, then I used GIMP instead of photoshop for the rest of the process.


I knew when I saw this assignment that I wanted to do it because I knew I had this picture of my eye that was perfect for the job, and I’m not too advanced with photo manipulation yet, so this seemed like a good project to get my feet wet.


Over winter break 2016 I visited the beautiful city of Savannah, Georgia. While my younger sister complained the whole time we were there (and mind you, we were there for her soccer tournament) I had a wonderful time and took so many pictures of the gorgeous scenery and buildings. We walked around town, took a trolley tour, did a ghost walk, met Forrest Gump, and marveled at the old buildings. One of my favorites was the oldest Reform Synagogue (in North America? The east coast? Savannah? I can’t remember which one). It was a very tall building with stately arches and big, heavy doors. It resembled one of the many churches around, save for a Star of David instead of a cross on it’s highest point.


I chose this photo to be the reflection in my eye because it really was the reflection there once, and it was awe inspiring to stand under. I wanted to replicate how I felt in that moment, standing under part of my history, in this picture.

After following the instructions for, open the image in GIMP. Then use the smudge tool to soften the edges of the image within the eye and swipe the cursor around to blend the two layers together.

The top of the image inside the eye overlapped my top eyelid, so I then used the dodge/burn tool and clicked a few times (not swiping like when using the smudge tool) over where the image overlaps the eyelid.

The dodge/burn tool made my eyelid lighter than I had anticipated, so I then used the smudge tool again and swiped over the lighter area to blend it with the rest of the eyelid.

Here are the two separate images that were used to create this assignment

Synagogue in Savannah, GA
Uncropped, unedited photo


Unblended Version

Image Without Blending

Final Version

Image With Blending

Grass Stains on a White Shirt

Grab a picture of yourself in which your body language, actions, gestures, etc. suggest one thing and then play off that using a speech bubble.

I had a photoshoot before I graduated high school, as many teens do. I decided to invite my best friends along because they were such a huge part of my high school experience it would seem wrong to commemorate high school without them included. I knew I would want to choose one of these pictures because they were good quality and we all looked really happy in them, so I thought it would be funny to make captions that made us seem not-so-happy.


We took the photos in Clifton, Va, which is a cute little rustic town not far from where I live. We had hired an up and coming photographer because 1- a friend had recommended her to us, and 2- her prices were low. When we got to Clifton it was a beautiful spring evening, so there was more than one photoshoot going on in town (think three different groups all trying to get the shot in front of one specific church door). So we had to wait. In the meantime we took pictures on the train tracks that run through town and after about half an hour, it still wasn’t our turn in front of the door (don’t worry we eventually got there and it’s a great door so it was worth the wait). The photographer had a few other ideas, one of which was to lay in the grass and take aerial shots. My friends and I all piled up and she directed us where to put our heads and all our overlapping limbs. I’m not going to lie; this picture was not fun to take.


They were all complaining and I was fed up because it was a privilege that they could be a part of my senior photos. I don’t mind smiling for the camera, but the rest of them aren’t as camera comfortable as I am, which made the situation worse. We were also all wearing white (except Lauren), which was a coincidence Lauren wasn’t too happy about, which made laying on the grass an even less pleasant experience. All in all, the pictures turned out great, but it was a real test of our friendships.


I used this website in order to create my “spubble.” It was very straightforward.

Step 1: Select your pictures and upload it

Step 2: Click the stickers button on the top menu

Step 3: Select the signature collection

Step 4: Add thought bubbles to the photo. Resize and move them by using the arrows in the bottom right corner of the image while it is selected. Make sure to click apply after every change that is made!

Step 5: Click the back button to return to the main menu. Toggle to the right and click on text.

Step 6: Add text, just type in the box. Resize and move the text box just like images were moved! Choose a font and color that works for the photo, then move the text over the thought bubbles. Don’t forget to click apply!


Step 7: The apply button will turn to save after it has been clicked. Choose save and then download the picture. That’s it!


Here are the before and after pictures

This assignment is worth two stars and you can find the original post and instructions here.