Saturday, March 26, 2011

Interviewing/Final Projects

The video interview tips were really helpful, but also pretty intimidating. I have done interviews only a couple of times before, and on those occasions it was audio interviews for a written research project. I don't even know where I could do a video interview that wouldn't be either really echoey (studio) or completely obliterated by background noise (sirens, motors, screaming homeless people...) I have learned a few tricks for reducing background noise on Garageband and iMovie, but this city is pretty loud and crowded. And quiet, private space is limited to approximately zero. I'm in my own dorm room with my headphones in right now and I can hear the guy in the next room laughing and yelling randomly. The lobby is public circulation space. The study room has the acoustic and aesthetic qualities of a dungeon.

I am also concerned about having good equipment. My camera takes good-quality video footage, but I don't think I have access to a tripod and/or lighting tools. I know where to get them in Clemson! ... Doesn't help.

ALSO: my selection of interview subjects is severely limited by the language barrier. It's too bad, because interviewing people is kindof fun. But because of the delicacy required in portraying a person from a different culture respectfully, accurately, and with the proper "Topos," it seems a multi-lingual interview would be a disastrous failure. If I could manage to prepare well-phrased questions in Spanish, I certainly lack the skills for spontaneous follow-up or clarification questions. THEN I would have no qualifications to translate their responses faithfully (carrying the sense and tone of the words in addition to their literal meaning). I'm just not at that level.

And it seems unfair to set up a non-native English speaker for a video interview unless they are very comfortable with English. I will keep my eyes open but I think my subjects might have to be professors and friends who are comfortably bilingual.

I think I want to interview one of our studio professors for the final project. For the segment on professional/career connections I'm planning to research the education and licensing process for architects in Spain. In the states, it varies a lot from state to state, and it's even illegal to call yourself an "architect" without proper documentation; it would be interesting to see how a Spaniard qualifies him or herself to practice in Spain.

On the other hand, I really don't know what kind of photo or video footage could accompany that research. I definitely have a ton of pictures of architecture, but sorting out which ones are by Spanish architects might be way more difficult than you'd expect. International architecture is really common and I don't have labels on all my pictures. Suggestions from Clammers?

I also am still back and forth on what to do for my "Personal integration with the culture" segment. It seems like it needs a theme or structure to avoid just being a random blog about my experiences, of which there are a lot.

I know I'm a teensy bit behind as far as storyboarding goes. We just got back from a succession of very long, very taxing travels in and outside of Spain and the class deadlines are now upon us, so the CLAM projects have admittedly not occupied the forefront of my consideration for the past few weeks. Doing a good project is going to be challenging in this end-of-semester chaos.

1 comment:

  1. We can just play some final Jeopardy to figure out which pictures are of structures done by Spaniards! Maybe having some prizes involved would be a good motivator?