Author Archives: Irina Pistol

Blog Post #4

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The Coca Cola Christmas commercial with red trucks caravan and their holiday famous song makes me feel nostalgic and brings me back to my childhood, I was amazed all the time when I was watching that commercial on tv. It gives people the sensation of living in a story full of magic, where people are happy and joyful, all together outside waiting to share a bottle of coca cola and enjoy the holiday, snow, and atmosphere warmth. The beautiful song, accompanied by the sound of sleigh bells, makes children to dream about their Christmas gift wishes, and that Santa Claus is coming. The commercial song gives us the feeling that Christmas lights make sounds as well, and the fascinating choir of voices singing, bring people all races, gender, and ages together. 

Discussion #7

Episode 5 

1.Krukowski by his statement “the marginal-the rejected-the repressed-is whatever the powerful have decided is of no use at the moment,” he means that online corporations control the music trends and its recommendations. Musicians and singers, who are influencers on social media, they are in top charts, and internet influence people through diversity of ads. Having said that, some of yesterday hits are forgotten, because powerful dictates that. 

 2.The Forced Exposure is a big distribution warehouse. People can buy a record, and feel it in their hands, and listen to those songs and read about their description in the catalog. Before the internet, distribution companies, introduced many international singers and records to American listeners. On the other hand, is Spotify, a virtual music player, which has the purpose to work with the entire available music, it is based on algorithms, and is guessing listener’s preference and is giving him large recommendations. There is no effort to access any song on Spotify. 

 3.According to Krukowski, being “surprised” by music is when music recommendation services, like Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Prime Music, and others, is recommending us music which they think that we may like. On the other hand, “discovering” music is when people are making an effort to find a new artist, new album, by listening, and searching through the records. This is important because the online corporations are taking our freedom and our time giving us the information, they think we need, and we like. 

Episode 6 

1.According to Krukowski, signal is the sound which we are trying to pay attention to, and noise is the unwanted and unpleasant sound. When we are in a public space, and there are sounds from everywhere like people talking, cars sound, music, etc., those sounds will form the noise, and when will listen to a sound interested in, that is signal. This distinction is important, because when feel annoyed or disturbed, it is because of the noise, not signal. 

2.The central idea about noise is that all signals are noise when people do not pay attention to them, and when the volume is too high, people sometimes cannot distinguish the signal from the noise. In a recording studio tracing the unwanted noise is particularly important for the clarity of signal. 

 3.This episode relates to other episodes as aspects of sound, which I personally, did not pay attention to them, and I discovered something interesting about ways of hearing, and what represent sounds, signals, and noise in analog world versus digital world.

Discussion #6

Episode 3 

  1. The main differences between a cellphone and microphone according to Krukowski is that through cellphones people connect with each other, they can recognize each other’s voice, and “everyone sounds just as near, or just as far, as everyone else.” On the other hand, are the microphones, which transmit loud the voice sound to other people, or in the certain space.
  2. Gary Tomlinson believes that our ability to communicate with nonverbal parts of our voices goes so deep, it goes hundreds of thousands of years ago, before we had language,  we had utterances with musical qualities, what we needed to survive as species, like tool making and social organizations, we are musical beings. 
  3. Krukowski’s comments on the voice to ideas about community and interpersonal connection is that when we share our voices weather through songs or speech, are we saying more than our words, we connect with people around us, and those who are far away we connect with them through cellphones. 

Episode 4 

  1. As a user I am happy to have a big choice and to have access to a variety free music, I agree with the affirmation that music should be available to anyone who wants to hear it. However, playing and singing it is not just a musician’s passion, it is his job as well, he wants to charge a certain amount for his work, to be able to make his living and produce new music. 
  2. Music is bringing people together. Musician are the artists who self-express through beautiful sounds and are sharing their art with listeners, they are interacting with each other. 

Blog post #5

I heard first time the song “Desi Thoughts” by A.R. Rahman, when I was watching “A Million Dollar Arm” movie. There are no words, it is instrumental, and it touched my heart. When I listen to the sound of violins and guitar and other instruments, my mind connects with those sounds, capturing all my thoughts.  

Based on Krukowski podcast, this music was played in that analog time, when the composer A.R. Rahman and Prasanna group from Berkley College of music were paying a tribute in that real moment, it cannot be redone or changed. Each musician is living in that moment and is feeling those notes and sound which, they are producing on their instruments. 

Through this music the composer is making a balance between Indian well and Western sensibilities. First the composer watched the movie, and later he reflected on song ideas. This music has some meditative moments and has the profundity which we are looking for.  

A. R. Rahman Meets Berklee – Desi Thoughts ft. Prasanna (6 of 16)

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Discussion #5

Episode 1 

1. According to Krukowski’s main point, “real” time is variable and always changing, humans experience and express time in analog world, and it does not move quickly or slowly like in “digital” time. On the other hand, “digital” time is a machine time, expressed by computers, it is exact and unchanged.

2. Krukowski by saying that listening has a lot to do with how we navigate space, he means that switching from analog to digital audio changes our perception of time and space. Through using the stereo hearing, we find the source of the sounds around us.

 Episode 2 

1. Jeremiah Moss is angry about Astor Place gentrification, it has been a public space, where has happened protests and free expression, and now many changes are happening. Many businesses are privatizing the public space around the pedestrian plaza, and implementing many rules, they are dictating people how to use that space.

2. According to Emily Thompson’s idea about development of concert halls, is to control sound in interior space and to isolate from the city noise, and to create refuge from that loud environment. Likewise using the earbuds, each person is creating his own interior space and listening to the sounds he chose.

3. The sound around us always warn us and let us know about the space, we know where we are in that moment, and what or who is moving around us. As an example, are blind people, their feeling of space is related to sounds around them, they know when to cross the street listening to pedestrian traffic light sound. They also hear the presence of other people around them.

Discussion questions #4

1. According to Berger, publicity has the purpose to make people to want to buy new things, and buying new things, people will feel more self-confident and happier. Likewise, advertising is an act of informing people about current clothing trends, new cars, jewelry, styles, devises, and many other things, influencing people to want those goods and to enhance their list of continuously needs. Companies increase their revenues due to advertising and publicity images, and people are spending their money in hope to get richer with new purchases. 

2. Through oil paintings the “spectator owner” is showing his wealthy and luxury life in the present moment, he is a subject to be envied. On the other hand advertisement show viewers that they are unhappy in the present moment of their life, and it can offer them a better alternative with a good price to satisfy their need.

3. Kim Kardashian is an example of glamour, beauty and wealth to be envied. Regarding her retouched and photoshopped pictures on social media, she became a fashion icon and idol for many women in the world. Through her Instagram pictures, she is promoting a specific body type, that many women wish to achieve through plastic surgeries, or other correction methods. However, this is just a form of false consciousness.

Blog Post #3

  • Is the purpose of the essay to educate, announce, entertain, or persuade? 

The purpose of the essay is to educate, announce, entertain, and persuade peers and teachers. The writer should develop the main idea, and to bring believable and reasonable arguments to the reader. 

  • Who might be interested in the topic of the essay? 

On the first place the writer is interested in the topic of the essay, because it is easier to write about chosen topic. Moreover, it can be a subject which the writer wants to research and learn something from that. On the second place is the reader who will pick an essay to read from his interested topics 

  • Who would be impacted by the essay or the information within it? 

The essay impact both, the writer, and the reader. The writer is self-expressing through essays, he learns from his researches, develops the ideas, and expands his way of thinking. Likewise, the reader, he learns something new for him, he can borrow the writer’s ideas. 

  • What does the reader know about this topic? 

The reader has a brief idea based on topics name, and if it matches with his list of interested topics, he wants to read and know more about.  

  • What does the reader need to know in order to understand the essay’s points? 

The reader needs to know the subject, or the question addressed to this essay. 

  • What kind of hook is necessary to engage the readers and their interest? 

Vision works instantly, so a well-structured essay can be a hook to engage readers, then will be an interesting topic, also a good essay introduction. 

  • What level of language is required? Words that are too subject-specific may make the writing difficult to grasp for readers unfamiliar with the topic. 

It is required a college level of language, but the writer should know first who his readers are, and their level of language.  

  • What is an appropriate tone for the topic? A humorous tone that is suitable for an autobiographical, narrative essay may not work for a more serious, persuasive essay. 

The appropriate tone for the topic is related to audience and purpose. The writer should use the relevant vocabulary words to achieve the tone of the topic. 

  1. Covid-19 pandemic has given us the chance to stay home for an extended period, and we have a chance to do many things which we could not do before. People are saving time on commute, some workers have the possibility to work from home, students are taking online classes. Moreover, some people are learning how to cook, others are learning a foreign language. Everybody had lack of time, and now they can focus on their family, hobbies, household, and improving some skills.

Discussion #3

1.According to John Berger’s “Ways of seeing,” nakedness and nude female form seem to have many similarities, but they have opposite concepts. Both words mean not to have clothes on, but nude is about a posed painting, it is intentional, and nude female form has the purpose to be in presence of a male viewer. However, to be naked is to be oneself, the subject is focused on her own life and is looking away from the viewer. When we access Instagram and other social media, we can see nude female images, and those are continuously changing viewer’s perception about how womens ideal beauty. 

2.Western works of art represent male nudity as dominance, ideal body form, male power, and women nudity as sexuality, an object of the pleasure. Berger by saying “Men act, and women appear,” highlights the social hierarchy and gender inequality. Nowadays, these work arts, and the way how the male and female are portrayed, and their role in the society centuries ago influenced women to fight for their rights and equality of sexes, and it influenced men to give them those rights.

3.Mirror behind the women is another factor that determines that the painting is of nudity. It symbolizes self-admiration and self-love. Woman has pride in her own appearance, looking into the mirror she is her own object of the pleasure and admiration as she is for the male viewer. The woman’s gaze shows the viewer that she is aware of being viewed, inviting him in. Nowadays, selfie pictures are an example of woman’s vanity, inspired from older European art.

This is the famous painting “Girl with a Pearl Earring, an oil painting by Johannes Vermeer. The subject in this painting is a mysterious girl looking over her shoulder at viewers, attracting them with her gaze. Viewers are fascinated by the dark background in contrast with her blue and yellow turban, brownish-yellow top, bright white collar, and her enormous pearl earring. People can look at this painting repeatedly, and never getting bored of it.  

According to Berger’s ideas, “Girl with a Pearl Earring” has been reproduced on the cover of the well-known novel with the same name, by Tracy Chevalier’s. The author sold over five million copies worldwide, with the purpose to share the interesting story about the painter Vermeer and his most famous painting.  

It is such a popular painting, that it has been used on cover of many other art books. Moreover, people can own the reproduced painting on cushions, coasters, T-shirts, bags, socks, suitcases, and many other things. The unpleasant form of information, is when the painting is reproduced as a meme, as we see on the second picture, during Covid-19, the girl in the painting appears with a mask on her face, and there are many other memes related to different topics. All memes distort the original meaning. 

Discussion #2

1.Berger by saying that process of seeing is not natural and it is shaped by habits and conventions, he means that human’s vision works instantly. First, the person receives the information through his vision, then he tries to explain it with words, influenced by his imagination, knowledge, and life experience. If there is a group of people looking at one painting, then, there will be a variety of “ways of seeing,” everyone will have his own visualization and description of that artwork. People can share with each other their experience of interpreting a panting. 

2.An image is someone’s way of seeing. The camera is a device which helps the photographer to record an image captured by his vision at that moment. Nowadays, we can see the copy of any famous painting on our screen devices. However, according to Berger, when a camera is photographing a painting, it destroys the painting uniqueness. Seeing an artwork in a museum is a unique experience, the viewer has the freedom to observe the details, to feel the painting’s aura, to reflect about what he sees. 

3.According to Berger, the reproductions of paintings becoming a “form of information”, means that copies can distort the original meaning of the painting and they can make arguments. Those copies can be wrongly used in political propaganda and commercials. However, reproductions of paintings, seen on tv, newspapers, and documentary videos can attract and teach people about art and how to look at, and where to improve the knowledge about art.