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Final Portfolio Reflective Paper

Final Portfolio Reflective Paper

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Published by Conor Kelly

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Published by: Conor Kelly on Dec 08, 2011
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Kelly 1Conor KellyDr. Dietel-McLaughlinMultimedia Writing & Rhetoric6 December 2011Final Portfolio Reflective PaperThroughout the first semester of my freshmen year, our class has worked on severalessays to gain a firm grasp on rhetoric using multiple forms of media. For the four projects weworked on this year: the audio narrative, rhetorical analysis, research paper, and visual essay, wewere able to incorporate rhetoric to keep the viewer reading, listening, watching, and wantingeven more. My portfolio demonstrates that writing is a process because each project requiredmuch more than sitting down and writing an essay. For the audio narrative we had to work onnot only how it sounds in our heads, but also how it sounds in our ears. We had to practicespeaking it to ourselves to make sure the progression and development of the plot came acrossthe same way when it was spoken as when it was read. This was a difficult blend because we areso used to the confines of writing proper essays that it was initially difficult to write in slang orhow we would talk normally for fear that it would come across as unprofessional. However, assoon as we embraced that our ears need to like the story more than our eyes did, we couldsuccessfully cross the border into creating an audio narrative. For the rhetorical analysis, we hadto explore the online identity of two people and compare them. I choose to look at two of thebiggest NBA stars of my generation, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, and looked at somethingbesides their basketball abilities. I used their websites and analyzed how they presentedthemselves to the world using color schemes, content design, and pictures. This required a keeneye and an ability to look past your initial impression of the website and focus on the fine detailsand the hidden messages. For the research paper, I decided to look at how the media portrayedconcussions and the effects it is having on sports. This project required that we go out and
Kelly 2search for information both in the library and online in order to write about our topics. Instead of an essay in which you already have a firm grasp on the material, my research essay challenged usto explore sources, find the best ones, learn about it, interpret the information, and then use it tohelp support my
overall thesis. This was perhaps our greatest “process” of the semester because
of how long it took and the attention to detail that it demanded. Lastly, for my visual essay Idecided to branch off of the topic I used for my research paper and examine how impropertackling is the root cause of the recent spike in head and neck injuries and I chose to present thisinformation using iMovie. I gathered videos, music, and text and blended it into a movie thatboth en
tertains the viewers and sends a vivid message. I used the “big hit” videos that everyone
loves to watch on YouTube to wow the viewer with the raw impact that these players arereceiving and then direct my point at the coaches of these players and how it is their job to curbthis trend towards violent hits. For this project we had blend multiple forms of media into onecomplete project and that required an entire process of research, composition of the video, andthen writing an essay about it. Unlike the constant revisions of reading over my papers, thevisual essay required me to re-watch my product over and over to determine its success atportraying my message.My process skills were evident because of all the steps that it required for eachindividual project to make them successful. For every essay there was multiple components thatmade it critical for us as writers to take one step at a time. I believe that the area I progressed the
most in was my ability to buy into the “process” way of writin
g an essay instead of cramming itall in on the last night. By breaking our essay apart into sections, for example exploratory drafts,annotated bibliographies, strong drafts and peer revision sessions, it allowed us to conquer a 10-page paper in baby steps and ultimately resulted in a more thorough and finished product. The
Kelly 3process of writing a paper let me break my high school habit of procrastination and finish mypaper of several weeks instead of the night before.I believe that my portfolio demonstrates my understanding of rhetoric because I wasable to incorporate it into all my essays in a number of ways. For the audio narrative, I depictedrhetoric through the spoken word of an essay. For the analysis and research paper, I was able tointerpret information and translate it into rhetoric through an essay form. And for the visualessay, I was able to present rhetoric visually through my movie. Rhetoric is not defined to thelines written in a book li
ke in the olden days. We’re in the 21
century and technology is thefuture, and we were able to use that technology to display rhetoric in multiple forms. I believethat my best use of rhetoric came in my visual essay. I had the most fun creating this piece and Ibelieve that that resulted in my best work. I feel that using audio and visual aids to persuade thereader about my cause had the longest lasting effect on the viewer because of how everyone iseasily able to connect to the point I was making no matter if you like sports or not.The role of research was also crucial to this semester, especially in creating therhetorical analysis, research paper, and visual essay. For each of these projects, we had to pick atopic or subject and then go do research on it. For the analysis piece it was contrasting twowebsites. For the research essay it was going to the library and learning how to utilize all theresources that it has to offer while also searching the web and even television for possiblesources to support your point. And for the visual essay it was finding the right medium toportray your topic. Each required that we go above and beyond the call of simply writing off of what we already know and demanded that we get out there and discover resources for ourselves.I had done a research paper my junior year of high school, but lets just say my library
didn’t have
 fourteen floors and had nowhere near as many options. Research became a focal point of our

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