I have to practice what I preach. And because I teach media arts and communication arts courses, aside from Literature and Creative Writing subjects, my website should serve as an example of what I continuously harp on inside the classroom -- that learning is not what you just read because it's assigned, and it is not just writing an essay or accomplishing an exercise for a grade.
Learning is really a neverending quest to find out how and why stuff happens, how and why things work, why this and not that. Etcetera.
Learning doesn't stop just because now I am a licensed professional and people pay me lots of money to fix things for them. And it doesn't stop just because now I'm a teacher, and here's the syllabus for the class I'll teach.
Learning from where I stand is also finding out how best to transmit knowledge (and perhaps wisdom) to students. It is finding out what tools would work to facilitate the exchange of ideas.
And I should emphasize the word "exchange" because learning is not just a one-way street (leading from teacher to student, sometimes ending up in cul-de-sacs). Learning is really a conversation among the students and the teacher.
The teacher usually sets the tone and facilitates the flow of ideas. And one way for the teacher to do this is to provide examples, sometimes drawing from his/her own experiences and work.
And when a teacher like me draws from my own work, then I had better show something I would also "demand" from my students. I have to walk my talk.
And so this "renovation" of my website.
Yes, that's what's this post is really about -- a rationale for my most recent redesign.
"Editing is why people like watching movies. Because in the end, wouldn't we like to edit our own lives?" That's what director Rob Cohen says in the documentary The Cutting Edge: The Magic of Movie Editing (2004).
And it couldn't have come at a more serendipitous time, too. Tim gave me a DVD copy of the docu that I watched in-between editing and marking papers. So there I was, watching the docu and wondering how to edit such tedious chores out of my existence.
While marking papers and preparing for next term's classes, I read Eudora Welty's One Writer's Beginnings (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1984). This passage from her book stuck:
I stumbled into making pictures with a camera. Frame, proportion, perspective, the values of light and shade, all are determined by the distance of the observing eye.
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