…and I’ll tell you why. This semester a key part in every piece that I have done is improvisation. The guitar line and drum beats in the song were improvised. Much of my dance was choreographed in a trial and error improvisation method. I went in with a clear head, and allowed art to happen. I’ve never thought of visual art that way. It’s always been something carefully planned or meticulously copied from reality. But when I was gathering sources for my project’s Works Cited, I gathered lots of sources focused on creating visual art using musical improvisation techniques. As someone who primarily identifies herself as a musician, this speaks to me. And since reading these articles I’ve become infatuated with the idea. And so I’ve decided to try something entirely new to me. I want to improvise my final drawing. Continue reading
For this last blog post, I want to trace back to the beginning of my project and think about the future for China’s reconstruction plan for impoverished areas.
One of the initial reasons why I conducted this research project is that I felt a loss of identity after continuing my education in America for several years. I remember feeling a loss of connection to the city I grew up in, and I realized that I was forgetting the culture I was born into. Trying to remember and reconnect with my culture, I decided to conduct an independent research project on Shimenkan. Growing up in Kunming in an upper-middle-class family, my life was confined to a small circle. My research project would allow me to learn more about contemporary Chinese politics and the socioeconomic diversity of my province. Continue reading
Since I am planning to continue my independent project next semester, during which time I will write my final paper, there was not a natural answer to the question of exactly what I will produce as my demonstration of learning for this semester. While meeting with T. Margaret a few weeks ago, we decided that I should create an extensive annotated bibliography to turn in at the end of the semester. Continue reading
This week’s blog will focus on my reflection on my project and what I have learned thus far. In addition to this, I will also talk about my goals for the remaining time of my project.
I think one of the biggest challenges I faced so far is the efficiency in moving my project forward. One of the unique parts of my project is that I am able to work with governing officials, but this has also posed problems for me since I am not able to control the pace of my project. The people I am working with generally take time to contact, and I cannot text them and expect an immediate response since they are all busy people.
As a result, I have developed patience and…subtle ways to remind them to respond to my emails. I think it’s also interesting to learn to work with different people.
In terms of how I am doing with my timeline, I think I am not following the timeline directly. Instead, I am incorporating various unplanned things into my timeline. For example, my original plan was to build a relationship with Chester County and Yanqing County. However, along the way, I also learned other interesting things such as the help desk and am working to see if I can do anything to help them.
Another important lesson I learned is how to best use my time. I think doing an independent project allows me to manage my time base on what I need and I have found ways to make my independent study efficient and effective. One of the ways I do this is through time management. Click here to learn more about time management!
In the last third of the semester, I would like to continue to work on the connection between Yanqing County and Chester County. Good news I have received this week is that there is a special person in the County that works on China Initiative, and I am already in contact with her. I hope we can move forward together.
For this blog post and those in the weeks to come, I plan on writing in greater detail about the crisis years of 1386-1388 and eventually the 1390s, since it seems likely that this is the time period I will end up focusing on in my research. To begin, I will discuss the tensions that erupted in 1386 as a result of the threat of a French invasion. Continue reading
I have mentioned Commissioner Farrell many times in my previous blog. However, I have not had a chance to talk about my relationship with him, how I started this project and why I continue working on this.
I met Commissioner Farrell in 2014, before the start of my freshman year, during my visit to Westtown School. He is a friend of my guardian, who is my father’s classmate from HBS, and he currently lives in Havertown. We had dinner together at Iron Hill in West Chester. At that time, he briefly introduced Chester County to me and my parents. That dinner not only helped me to choose Westtown among other schools that accepted me but also laid a solid foundation for my work in Chester County commissioner’s office. Continue reading
In the dance studio on Monday, while I vigorously choreographed and drilled, I couldn’t stop thinking about next steps. I was taking in the music and thinking about movement, but at the same time, ideas for the visual piece started popping into my head. This is a huge step for me. It was the first time that I felt that I was looking holistically at my project rather than just at the facet at hand. Continue reading
Last week and this week I got some productive setting-up done and am now feeling just about ready to really take off. I managed to start and finish another amoeba painting last week, and did some general sketching. I also worked on my one dragon painting, which I have vowed to finish up soon so that I may move on. Continue reading
Written and directed by Mike Mills, Beginners is a film that deals a lot with loneliness. After his mother’s death, Oliver (Ewan McGregor)’s father, Hal (Christopher Plummer) is diagnosed with stage-four cancer. At the age of 75, he also comes out of the closet and starts living the time of his life. After Hal has passed away, Oliver becomes depressed until he meets a French actress, Anna. They try to make their relationship work while both struggling with issues of their own.
This week I continued with my film along with work on my annotated bibliography. Most of the information is the same from my first semester independent project but there are many pictures I would need to cite. The film process is moving along smoothly so I decided to use this post as an opportunity to show some photos that will be in the video.