iDog

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With the present technological revolution we continue to experience every day, iPhone and smart phone applications can turn anyone into a techy…and I mean anyone! It’s easy to navigate, fun to use, and fast for people on the go. “iDog” is the latest app available in the iTunes app store for those interested in Guide Dogs and Puppies in training.

The app includes links to Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Blogs, Tips, Contacts, Photos, and more. This is the best app for those interested in becoming puppy raisers or who want to see how the process works, and what the puppies look like in action. Download the app on your phone from this link to see what it’s all about! http://tinyurl.com/kt55jt

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A Holiday with the Guide Dog Puppies

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After their last holiday celebration, the Halloween Party at Avamere Rehab, I expected the Puppy Club to host an entertaining evening for the puppies. Instead, it was a visit to the Valley River Center mall…on Puppy Pics with Santa night! Unfortunately, the puppies were not allowed to participate, but did bring a lot of holiday spirit and joy to the shoppers admiring the puppies practicing their guiding skills. Photos capture the experience of taking laps around the mall with the puppies, who were very well-behaved and proved that dogs really could shop themselves. It made me think twice about if I needed a guide dog to do my shopping for me!

http://prezi.com/x3bparmuplwa/a-holiday-with-the-guide-dog-puppy-club/

Puppies on Pinterest

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Guide dog puppies in training are a hot commodity right now on the internet…mostly because they are so darn cute! Technology has helped people become more educated about the program that has been installed in various states and even expanded into other countries worldwide. Different states have specific programs for guide dog training, so it is exciting to see how these aspects differ from those in your local area. Eugene, Or hosts the Guide Dogs for Lane County Puppies in Training and they meet weekly to train the puppies and help them become more familiar with social environments. The program encourages trainers to help socialize the dogs and bring them out in the community. Pinterest is the perfect way to see these puppies in action, and take a look at the cutest photographs of these sweet, well-behaved puppies! And don’t forget to read the amazing stories about heroic guide dogs who have done incredible deeds for their blind partners, including a guide dog for a blind dog!

http://www.pinterest.com/journalism3/eugene-puppies-go-to-the-mall/

When everything possible could go wrong with a project…it does

You know that awesome feeling when you film video footage ahead of time and already feel so prepared when you’re project isn’t due for awhile? Yeah that happened. And then, somehow weeks passed by, and the project still wasn’t done. Some may label this as extreme laziness and lack of motivation…but that’s not it at all. When you’re fighting between health and good grades, it is a tough decision to choose what to prioritize. With all my spirituality that I harness individually, I take becoming very sick as a clear sign to SLOW life down and rearrange personal lifestyle normalities. Balancing various responsibilities, including the most important ones school and cheerleading, is something that everyone in our fast-paced society has to deal with. Sometimes it is hard to justify putting practice or a football game ahead of getting my homework done. I hate that part. But when you make a commitment, it’s imperative that you stand by it…and also remember why you are really here…SCHOOL! 

My mom has ingrained this saying into my head, “all you can do is the best you can do”. I really believe in that. Coming from high school as an oblivious freshman 3 years ago, I was used to pulling consistent all nighters to get A’s on my projects or study to score perfectly on tests, after long days of driving hours away to go to dance practice or traveling to competitions. Once I came to college, I realized I could really only handle so much. I am no superhero. I am a human being. I need sleep, food, and a daily routine. Does that mean I have to take the B- when I need to sleep after being awake for 32 hours straight from homework and then to ESPN College Gameday and a football game? YES. 

These rants may not be a school assignment, but this is how I have to justify why I do what I do. I love cheerleading, so I won’t quit. I am so passionate about my journalism major, so I will try my hardest to put the most effort I can into my projects with the small amounts of free time I have. I promise this is all relevant to my J333 experiences…

J333 has been such a fun way to explore different sources of multimedia and showing me what I like and don’t like about different kinds of journalism. I enjoyed exploring my “guide dog puppies in training” topic for the term, especially my last video project which was a lot of fun to capture. I had trouble getting clear audio, as I had a microphone not in the greatest location, so I had to settle for audio from my phone and from the video camera. The puppies kept coming to me and bumping my camera straight into the lens, so I had a good time playing with them. Unfortunately Final Cut Pro gave me some trouble when I detached all of the audio from the video and tried to rematch everything…when the sound was already deleted. Two weeks ago I thought I was done, I had exported the project to YouTube, to find that none of the sound came out. I thought my head was going to explode! I had no time with a volleyball game, 3 basketball games, and a football game all that week. And then came Thanksgiving…an even more busy time. Life just happened and I struggled to get all of my projects in for every class – you know how some way every class magically has projects due on the same day. So I’ve struggled, but I’m coming back up for air. I’m sleep deprived, and trying to nurture myself with rest and good nutrition, so I am taking advantage of “dead week” to catch up. I’m not dead, I’m so grateful for having such a healthy life, having the opportunity to go to college and cheer for the most exciting football team in the country. I am grateful. Thanksgiving reminded me of that…despite my obstacles of trying to get everything done, I realized I cannot do it all. All I can do is my best. And stop worrying about disappointing fellow classmates or my teachers. We are only human. Things happen. 

Despite the technological failures and time management issues, I had fun completing my video project. If I could do it again, I would have done individual interviews with the trainers instead of placing the microphone by them. It made it really hard and time consuming for me to edit in Final Cut Pro. I need to keep track of the audio I rip off as well so I don’t have to take hours of my time to search through footage and match it with the visual appearance of the video. So yes, it might not represent my best work, but it was what I could get done with the time and resources I had. I enjoyed learning so much from the Guide Dogs for Lane County group and found something so exciting to write about/photograph/capture/engage in. I am thankful for everything I’ve learned through J333 and how much I have discovered about my technological abilities and how to use prioritize my school responsibilities. After this last Thanksgiving and realizing how much I truly enjoy journalism, I am THANKFUL.

A Halloween Puppy Party

In the spirit of Halloween, I got to attend a festive costume party with the Guide Dog puppies in training at the Avamere Rehab in Eugene. Avamere Rehab It is a nursing home that welcomes outside activities from groups like the Guide Dogs of Lane County to come and bring joy to the live in residents. The patients could play with the puppies and I loved watching how overjoyed they were to be with animals. Because of their proper Guide Dog training, the puppies were so well behaved and calm around the patients, so the patients were never frightened and always comfortable to pet the puppies and play with them.

It was a great experience to be participating in the activity and really be in the moment with my video subjects, but this made it very difficult to get accurate, different angled shots, both close up and wide shots. With this, I used a more portable tripod that was more moveable and this caused a huge issue for me…I wasn’t able to keep the camera as steady and focused. I think the content I grasped through the video is very decent, but as far as the quality of shots and being able to see the puppies because people were in the way – I had a hard time. Despite my struggles, I had so much fun filming and am so happy I got to videotape a group of dogs with a story that I can’t wait to share.

The best part? I got to play with the little pups when I was off the job.

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Audio Slideshow – Technical Difficulties

I enjoyed the creative, extensive process of producing my audio slideshow…especially because I was able to photograph such cute guide dog puppies! While I loved taking photos and had such a good time getting to know the dogs, I did not appreciate all the technical difficulties that have come about in the digital age. I always thought I was pretty computer savvy, but this one was too hard for me to crack. Before I could even scream “oh no”, in a second all of my digital files on my computer had vanished. No more high school photo memories, or better yet photos for my slideshow! My hard drive kept saying “error” and the problems continued to intensify. I’m not sure how many hairs from my head that I loss that night because of stress, but I knew I needed to crack down and do my best to improve upon the slideshow I had previously created…and start all over. Thank goodness for iPhones, one huge pro for technology, because all of my audio interview was still saved as a recording. I had an easy time interviewing my subject and our time was very comfortable and conversational. One huge issue was that we had to stay with the dogs in the park and couldn’t leave them alone…so there was nowhere for us to really interview privately. I tried removing the excess noise when editing my audio on my computer, but it was too natural to cut out. I felt like my good content outweighed the negative aspect of having background noise. I also wished the dogs could have barked for me to add more natural sound, but as guide dog puppies in training they are not allowed to bark. With this, I used the whining, jingling of the collar, and voices of children at the park watching the puppies.

Despite the issues, the project was extremely enjoyable. I can’t wait to expand upon this topic and produce my video…starring the guide dog puppies in training all in costume at their Halloween party!