• Weekly Summary (1/20) •

[To Sum Up]

This week has been a bit of a whirl wind. I found myself quite busy even though it is the beginning of the semester. That’s why I find myself writing this summary on Friday night…

To go into a little bit of detail in regard to the work that we were assigned this week overall I didn’t find any one portion too challenging and I enjoyed the whole process of getting started.

To start, I created new social media accounts for this class. I already possessTwitter, Flickr, Vimeo, and SoundCloud accounts and because I wanted to keep this course’s work separate from my personal accounts I went ahead and created new ones all under my super secret agent name “Neapolitan Napoléon” and @NeapolNapol in the case of Twitter.

In the first blog post that I published I share content from each of Neapolitan Napoléon’s accounts and share fun facts and pose little questions to the rest of the DS106 community related to Napoléon and France.

[If it isn’t evident already I a•d•o•r•e the French Republic.]

(I also love doing fun things with text and fonts so you’ll probably see a fair amount of that as well.)

So, in the quest to find clever usernames I decided on Neapolitan Napoléon because I found the most adorable Napoléon stuffed bear while I was in France over winter break and I knew that he had be the face of my secret identity. Sure, the real Napoléon was not engaged in espionage, but Neapolitan Napoléon definitely is!

As what I publish will be spy oriented and also France themed I’m still figuring out how to connect the two and what type of art I should aim to produce. I guess as I go through the semester I will piece it together in a super secret agenty detectivy mysterious sort of way.

My posts this week include:

Social Media

Show Your Work

Mission 106 Thoughts

• Mission106 Thoughts •

My thoughts on the Mission106 theme are mixed, I must admit. When I first saw that espionage would be the subject that our prompts throughout the semester would be based in I was a little dubious as to the true extent of possibilities that could exist for our work.

However, as I’ve put my toes in and tested the water I’ve come to appreciate the theme. Having a concept to come back to throughout the semester that is specific and general at the same time will be helpful within the creative process. It will be nice to have it to rely on – something to draw ideas from in it of itself as well as from the DS106 community that will be participating.

As for the genre itself I love m•y•s•t•e•r•i•e•s [in particular], but I appreciate spy fiction in general as well. Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poiret, Nancy Drew, Phryne Fisher are some of my favorite detectives. Maybe I will be able to incorporate them somehow over the course of the semester…

• Show Your Work •

Reading “10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered” by Austin Kleon was especially revitalizing. Through most of college I’ve struggled with balancing time spent on coursework and time spent creating – or – in fact, thinking about creating. During my sophomore year I studied in France for six months and inspiration to write, take photos, and engage more deeply in being creative was so easy.

Two years have passed and while I sometimes steal some time away to engage in the world and write about it has been harder to find inspiration to create. I need a place, a person, newness to inspire me and that doesn’t always come so often.

I loved all of Kleon’s councils, but I especially appreciated his advice to “Think process, not product” because it is definitely true that I often become too focused on what I want to produce and reach that I hurry through the process which should truly be the focus.

However, while I appreciate thinking about and engaging in the process for my side of the operation, but I don’t necessarily agree that an audience or viewer who is receiving the work needs to visualize or understand every step that the artist took to reach the final point.

Just as a magician does not reveal the background to his trick because the magic comes from the mystery – from not knowing, I don’t believe that an artist should reveal all. I’m  not proposing that art should necessarily be an illusion, but maybe it would suffice to give a few crumbs to viewers and share small portions of the process instead of its entirety.

• Social Media •

•Hello fellow agents •

Here I am! Ready to • create • all whilst……..

………..[undercover] • (shhh!) •

Perhaps you’ve already noticed my secret [I•d•e•n•t•i•t•y]: “Neapolitan Napoléon.” If not, then you’ll be quite familiar by the end of this post as he’s taken over my Twitter, Flickr, Vimeo, & SoundCloud accounts that I’ve included pieces of below.

I’ve paired each photo or video from each account with a small question  or fun fact related to the content. This is a game (jeu) that I hope to play through out the semester along with my inclusion of French words sprinkled through out because Neapolitan Napoléon is quite French.

On Twitter I’ve disclosed my agent’s identity:  “Neapolitan Napoléon” and I urge you to follow my missions @NeapolNapoleon
• Does anyone know what Neapol means? 10 super spy points to the person who guesses correctly •

All the photos on my Flickr photo stream are pictures that I took during my three week trip to Paris over winter break. During my stay I also traveled 70 km south to Fontainebleau to visit the Château de Fontainebleau (pictured below) where centuries of French kings and Napoléon I and Napoléon III lived.
• My true identity may or may not also be on Flickr…can you spot me? •

Agent Neapolitan Napoléon

From SoundCloud I wanted to share Neaopolitan Napoléon’s theme music. It’s a hit straight from the 1890s. A grand merci to French composer Monsieur Claude-Achille Debussy for the memorable jam.
• Fun fact: I have yet to visit the cemetery where Debussy is buried in Paris, but I have been to Chopin’s grave – he’s buried in Pere Lachaise Cemetary! •

The video below “The Quiet City: Winter in Paris” by Andrew Julian on Vimeo  captures Paris in Wintertime perfectly and has inspired me to pursue recording the city in video the next time I’m there.
• Who can find something related to Napoléon in this vid? •

[A bientôt!]