Author Archive

January 26, 2009

Adobe at Bett 2009

A week has now passed since the Bett show at Olympia in London, and I am gradually getting back to the idea of being in school. Catching up and finding my feet again.
But what a show! It was grand to see Adobe folk from San Fran, to talk to them over breakfast, at the top of a tower block on the Thames, and on the stand.
There were a number of us UK AEL’s on the stand, presenting the work that we do in schools and colleges, talking to passers by, answering questions – great to be able to solve problems for people (interesting the number of folk who just want to tell you what they are doing with Adobe software) – and generally being a presence. Lots of coffee to keep it all buzzing. Liz doing a grand job, organising the stand, getting everything together. The stand worked well and looked brilliant.
AEL’s wore black polo shirts, Adobe folk wore purple – so difficult questions could be fielded towards the right coloured shirt! Adobe badges went like candy.
I got some really good feedback from the presentations that I gave:
“Really enjoyed the talk yesterday…Real stuff actually happening in/near a classroom.”
“I really enjoyed your talk on Friday… The time flew by and I really liked the way you came across. I was sat there thinking “my mate who`s head of Creative Arts would love this” I could hear the noises of excitement that she`d make if she`d been there.”
And I got as much from having the opportunity to give the presentations. It was also magic to have time to watch the other presentations, both from AEL’s and from Adobe experts. CS4 is pretty fantastic!
Back in school again today, and having fun with Photoshop, inspired by a demonstration of Greg’s – the ‘Photoshop Ping-Pong’
Determined to do more with Captivate.
It is a privilege to be a part of the Adobe machine, and get a chance to rave over the creative possibilities of the software.
But the greatest privilege is the opportunity to share creative ideas, to be a part of a community – feel a part of a community, and to have the opportunity to take this out to a wider community. All those people sort of things!

9:36 PM Permalink
August 12, 2008

Web Galleries

As well as playing with Flash to get my seminar presentation on line in a fashion that sort of reproduced the look and feel of the Keynote in which it was created, I have spent the last couple of weeks getting my end of year exhibition up on our departmental website – a job that I do every summer.
So I thought that I might share the process for any who may be interested.
The site is and the link is to ‘current exhibition’ (the site is a bit wobbly at the moment, so if it is down try later…)
If you click on ‘digital’ at the bottom of the page, and ‘Key Stage 3’ at the bottom of the menu, you will get examples of the different galleries that I have created.
For much of the work I simply edited the photos in a combination of Aperture and Photoshop – I guess that I should be using Lightroom, but Aperture came out first…
Most of the galleries were then created directly from Aperture – very simple and very quick to do, but not much in the way of templates. I am sure that I could as easily have used Lightroom, and Photoshop has lots of templates for web galleries – lots of choice for simple web galleries these days. The Yr 7 Land Art is an example of this sort of gallery.
For galleries with lots of images, I used a Dreamweaver plug in called Image Gallery Pack from a company called Project 7. They do lots of cool plugins for Dreamweaver. The menu on the digital page is also from them – Popup menu magic. I really like their concertina plugin too. The Holborne Museum photos are an example of this type of gallery.
The book effect in the Time Capsule project has been created with a bit of software called Banner Zest Pro from Aquafadas – with the images created pretty directly from Acrobat files. The project itself was originally created with Comic Life from Plasq. A slightly cheaper alternative is a Flash plugin called FlippingBook, but this is a little more comlex to use.
Another example of Banner Zest Pro is the kiost effect in the GCSE panel – either Meg or Sasha’s photos, or Holly’s (my daughter…)
And finally the animations and films that have been put together using the template that I created for the seminar presentation, which is done in Flash, with an extra component called TweenMax. I can offer instructions and a template if folk would like – contact me.
In terms of showing good practice in relation to digital photography, the work of Alex Hughes-Games is spectacular. I have included flipbook versions of his workbook/journals – but in order to keep them to a reasonably sensible size I have had to compromise on quality, so they may be hard to read. Useful on a mac is the alt apple = shortcut that magnifies text (if it is on in preferences). There is also three of the movies that he created with a binary application called mathmap.
The Paris photos of Nathan Al’Shebab are worth a look too. He has created a beautiful website to display them using msql and php.
Because these journals will be really useful to me (and I hope others) in demonstrating good practice to future students, I have also included one as an Acrobat 9 portfolio (thank you Adobe – thank you Steve) The downsite is that it weighs in at 25.6mb.
It strikes me that acrobat – the portfolio, and form creation are a simply perfect digital solution for the International Baccalaureate record book.
– Ross

4:12 AM Permalink