1.What is the essential story behind the piece you created?
When I began to think about the story I wanted to share, my peanut allergy was the first experience that came to mind. When I was young I tried a peanut cookie for the first time. The result was a severe allergic reaction to the peanut. The reaction was so severe that I almost died. I experienced swelling both inwardly and outwardly, cutting off my breathing.
This event altered the way I lived my life going forward. I lived in constant awareness of an allergy in a world that was not aware. Growing up, I did not experience the taste of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, peanut m&m’s, snickers or pecan pie. This type of awareness made holidays i.e. Halloween, lunches and even eating at restaurants difficult. Several reactions later I began carrying an epi-pen and Benadryl with me at all times. My mom, of course became concerned and even overprotective.
Growing up I did not truly grasp the gravity of my allergy until I had my daughter. She tried peanut m&m’s and had a severe allergic reaction similar to mine. Now, I’m more aware and understand the overprotective nature of my mother. This awareness has proven to be the catalyst as I try to educate my 3-year old daughter about a food that could potentially kill her. I am now the overprotective mother at class parties, lunches and Easter egg hunts. Along with my daughter, we live in a world that operates unaware. With such a severe allergy, we are both learning to be brave and mindful in a peanut filled world.
2.What was your purpose in creating this piece of new media narrative? Do you feel you were successful in communicating your purpose?
The purpose of creating this piece really comes down to educating an unaware public. However, the overarching purpose was to share a monumental moment in my life that forever changed me and later on, my daughter.
I feel like I was successful communicating a moment that had a significant impact on my life. I’m pleased with the outcome of the video itself. There are several nuances that may not be visible to the audience that I would love to correct. The lack of proper lighting and sound equipment affected the video. This is something I could correct with more experience and better equipment. Overall, mistakes included, I feel successful. My goal was to tell a simplified story utilizing child-like props and it worked.
3.Who was your audience? Do you feel you were successful in reaching your audience?
The audience intended for this piece is comprised of moms, dads, teachers or children suffering from a peanut allergy or knows someone who is. I think this narrative is the first step to a larger message. My hope is that this begins a conversation about an allergy impacting young and old alike.
I believe the only way to know if I was successful reaching my audience is to test it. Ultimately, showcasing Peanuts in a quirky way will cause the audience to pause. My hope is that the pause will cause awareness and empathy towards the allergy.
4.Why did you use your particular approach to media production and media selection? Were you successful?
I used this approach to Peanuts because I believe it’s a message that needs to be heard. In order for people to hear it, it has to be easy to understand. I’ve seen allergy commercials before or even public service announcements about peanut allergies. Unfortunately, they take a serious message and forget to engage their audience. Instead, there is an extensive amount of information thrown at the viewer and the viewer has a hard time sifting through it. The viewer is overloaded with information and then misses the message.
Using a whimsical approach allows for an otherwise “boring” subject to be interesting and engaging. Changing props allows the audience to keep track of a story because of a simple narrative and the look and feel of the video. I was successful using this particular approach to a certain degree. I’m a bit of a perfectionist and realize what is wrong with the piece. Lighting could be better and there is a transitional edit that could use some work along with sound. I also covered the top of the ambulance instead of holding it at a different angle. Again, these are all learning curves. At the end of the day, I’m happy with how the piece turned out.
5. What did you learn during the process of crafting your media piece that you can use in creating future new media narrative?
I think I will constantly be learning how to craft media pieces. This assignment gave me the opportunity to imagine and ultimately create a video that told a personal story. I believe this video is the first step to creating many more. I learned more about lighting and sound during this video. I also learned a little more about editing. Even filming was a bit of a challenge. I also learned how to operate iMovie a bit more.
The challenge for me is always developing what I picture in my mind. It can be difficult to picture something in your mind and realize that you may not have the skill set available to create the video you want. This is my challenge in the future. To be able to imagine it and actually create what I’ve imagined.