Results tagged “student profiles”

My First Step

Oredola Kayode is an AYV Scholarships recipient from Lagos, Nigeria. She participated in AYV at Media Concern Initiative, Oredola is currently studying Psychology at Covenant University in Ota, Nigeria.

Kayode_1st post_photoHi everyone,

I’m Oredola Praise Kayode. Wow! This is my first blog post. This is my first year in the university, and I must say it’s not really as easy as it sounds.

I remember when I resumed, it was a really different train ride. Registration at school was the toughest thing ever and went on for three days. I had to stop in between to attend the Adobe Summit in California and upon return, concluded registration for another week.

Waking up for early morning classes is another task, but I thank God for my roommates. It’s taking getting used to school norms like compulsory corporate dressing, lights out, signing of roll call and compulsory attendance of chapel services. The difference in the social life is a story for some other post, trust me, I just didn’t get it. By the way, I attend a Christian university.

Proudly, I have to say I’m studying psychology. Though we are still in the introductory part of the course, I love it. Currently taking 12 courses which include my program and general courses and I love all my lecturers, but if I were to choose who inspires me the most, I would have to say Dr. Adejumo, who teaches Statistics. He is the most intelligent, unpredictable, ironical, amusing and mind blowing personality I have ever met. He not only inspires me, he challenges me. He constantly reminds me how practical psychology and statistics are and challenges me to open up my mind for learning. Whenever I see or listen to him, he reminds me that I have so much to learn.

School schedule is hectic but I like the fact that it allows me personal time to brood and develop my creativity. I have written over five poems just in the course of the semester and am also a member of a dance group. I have also been learning a lot from some video producers and photographers and realized that most people use Adobe software like C6, for editing and finishing most of their productions. This exposure got me thinking on a particular project I would like to produce, although for now, I don’t know if I should focus on the challenges that freshmen face in the university or focus on creating a kind of dance video, or pick any of my poems and do a media piece on it. Maybe, you all can help me decide; please leave a comment if you have any suggestion.

To be honest, if planning or getting ready to go to the university or further education in any way, getting priorities right and knowing what you want is vital as so many things can distract anybody who doesn’t have set priorities, discipline and diligence. Let your unique creativity show and never be afraid to face your fears or show what you got, no matter how scared you feel.

Hard Work Pays Off

Ceballos_1st post_photoAlvaro Ceballos is an AYV Scholarships recipient from New York City. He participated in AYV at Urban Arts Partnership. Alvaro is currently studying Film at the Pratt Institute.

When I left the Dominican Republic I was a junior in high school, very close to starting college. Moving to the United States without knowing English pushed back all my dreams. I needed to start from zero as a freshman in high school again. At first I thought that I would never make it to college, but after all the sacrifices my family and I made, going to college became my priority. I went to ELLIS Preparatory Academy, a school dedicated to serving the academic and social needs of recently arrived youth like myself. Its mission is to assist its international population of students in developing their linguistic, intellectual, cultural and collaborative abilities, so that they may become part of this new culture.

From my second year until my senior year at ELLIS, I was required to do internships. It was at this point in my life when I discovered my passion for art. I interned at the Bronx Museum of the Arts (teen council), the National Museum of the American Indian, Lehman College Art Gallery, Barbara’s Flowers, and Scratch DJ Academy. My final internship was with the Peapod Adobe Youth Voices Academy at Urban Arts Partnerships. All of these internships helped me a lot, not only academically and socially, but also artistically. Now I am a full-time student at the Pratt Institute with the dream of becoming a film director.

The Peapod Adobe Youth Voices Academy helped me decide on my college career. Before going to the Academy in early senior year, I was undecided on my major. After interning at the Academy, I realized that film was something that I want to do for the rest of my life as a professional career.  Peapod Adobe Youth Voices Academy was the only place where I took film classes. I came to the Pratt Institute with knowledge of using Adobe Premiere, and it really helped me for my early assignments in my digital cinema class.

Kevin in the Making

Student Author – Kevin Bernardez

Kevin Bernardez is an AYV Scholarship recipient from Boston, Massachusetts. He participated in AYV at Madison Park Technical Vocational High School. Kevin is currently attending Fitchburg State University in Fitchburg, Massachusetts.

Hello everyone, my name is Kevin Bernardez, and I am so thrilled to introduce myself as an Adobe Youth Voices Scholarships recipient. I have to say that it has truly been a wonderful journey for me from the first day of high school until my first day in college. But wait, my journey does not end here. I still have fuel in my tank that has driven me to become a phenomenal student.

I graduated from Madison Park Technical Vocational High School, located in Roxbury, Massachusetts and I am currently enrolled at Fitchburg State University as a pre-major (undecided). Next semester I would love to major in in Film and Video because that is where my heart is, and that is what I’m most passionate about.

I love everything about film, from the different types of cameras to the way people act in scenes. I am not a very good actor, but with experience, I will be. I am very creative behind the scenes with directing, filming shots, and editing the piece. I have also expanded my horizons by creating animations as well.

I became interested in filmmaking when I was in 7th grade. At the time, my siblings and I created our own dance group called the H Star Crew and for a couple years, we had performed at numerous of places around Boston. In order to gain exposure for ourselves, we decided to produce videos and post them on YouTube. None of my siblings knew how to put clips together so I decided to give it a try, then I gradually learned how to edit videos on my own.

While still in middle school, I also produced music videos with an underground Reggae musician from Boston, which has helped gain exposure for his music. In my spare time, I would learn new aspects of video such as creating special effects. I’ve produced two videos using Adobe After Effects. In one video, I animated bringing the world, lighting, and a Super Mario fireball into my hands as I was sitting at my kitchen table. In another video, I cloned myself dancing, as if I was battling against myself.

As a student at Madison Park, I knew that I was going to experience the cutting edge of television and film production. Being a part of the Adobe Youth Voices program has allowed me to grow potential within myself as an artist. I learned things such as making sure you don’t use copy written music, brand, material and so forth. As an AYV alumni and a recipient of the AYV Scholarship, to have the opportunity to socialize with other Adobe Youth Voices students has opened up doors to network with other artists who has the same interest as me and to build on my craft. The only direction to go from here is forward.  


Is Engineering Interesting?

Randhir Singh is an AYV Scholarship recipient from Noida, India. He participated in AYV at Noida Public School. Randhir is currently studying Civil Engineering at National Institute of Technology, Kurukshetra in Kurukshetra, India.

I know the Theory of Relativity and Einstein’s equations boggles even those who have chosen engineering as their career, but I made a bet that when it comes to the practical sessions and workshops, engineering would become really interesting. And this is what I found out. Want to see how? Come…

randhir singh

AYV Scholar, Randhir Singh, at work

Workshops generally give us a gist of practical information and exposure to every part of a job we do in Engineering. Here “job” is not the usual term we use in our day to day lives but refers to anything we create in workshops and during practical sessions. In my case too I got this exposure and tried my hand on various tools like the lathe machine, bench vice, and welding set to create jobs related to machine, fitting, welding, foundry etc.

Let me explain to you how interesting these shops were and what I learned from them, how I tackle my problem and the overall workshop experience and problems.


Welding Shoprandhir singh at work

Many of us have never even held a welder in our hands and this too was my case. I had no past experience of welding. But our instructor made it really easy for us. The main problem was that you are not supposed to look at the light coming out of it. Thank God we had our goggles and masks. But it was not enough, the Iron sheet attracted the welder many times. This was the most irritating part, but after three classes I finally got it.


randhir singh at work2Fitting Shop

This was probably the toughest and most laborious workshop for me. Transforming a circular hole created in a thick iron piece by using triangular files, round files, flat files etc. Rubbing, rubbing and rubbing until I got the perfect shape. No matter how much I perspired, it was still the most interesting job for me.


Foundry Shop

randhir singh at work3This was the easiest and dirtiest job we did and it reminded me of my childhood when I used to play with dirt. Wow… in this job we were taught to make a molding of a pattern using rectangular frame and foundry tools.

I still am learning techniques to improve my expertise in each job, the only bad thing is that this class is only once in a week.

But, guys, engineering is really interesting, and if you are keen to find logic behind every day to day happening, then you should surely adopt it as your future. Last but not the least, thanks to Adobe Youth Voices for this scholarship, which made it possible for me to start my college degree in engineering this year and learn such amazing and creative things here.

Thanks a lot!!!


An Experience of a Maynoothian

Student Author: Delia Aires

Delia Aires is an AYV Scholarship recipient from Dublin, Ireland. She participated in AYV at the Blanchardstown Computer Clubhouse Foroige. Delia is currently studying Digital Media at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth.

This month has been one of the most inspiring, intriguing and exciting months of my life to date! Why? Because I’m in college, finally.

Since beginning University my eyes have been dramatically opened. It is a completely different world to the one I have been living in so far. For me, University is a place of freedom, friendship and the most important of all, learning. Before I arrived here, I expected it to be comprised of these components but never did I imagine how much they would be a part of college life. It is worlds away from Secondary school (High school) in that self-motivation is necessary. This instills great qualities within the individual, including responsibility.

The new friendships I have made already have been eye-opening. I have met all kinds of young people from all walks of life who, like myself, are eager to dive head first into the wonderful new adventure that is, college life and learning. I hope to not only learn from my lecturers, but from my peers also.

photo 2_survival guideLuckily, there are some amazing facilities in my University with access to Mac labs and TV studios nearby. Creativity is promoted. In fact, the leader of the student union, Mal Callan, thrust us into this creative environment from day one. For us incoming Freshers (First Years), he wrote a book named ‘The First Year Survival Guide’. This is not just an ordinary book though. The craftsmanship within it is pristine. It contains advice on how to be happy and healthy in college through humour. The sheer creativity and skill executed by Mal in this project has influenced my own creativity greatly. The true spirit of talent shines from it, which is helping and inspiring our college community for the better.

Speaking of creativity, I have recently completed working on and editing my first video project in Digital Media, the course I am doing. Although the process was long, I gained knowledge from it. Working with interesting and creative people allowed me to broaden my own creativity once more. I hope that this will continue throughout my life.

As this blog comes to a close, I must stress how grateful I am for this AYV scholarship. With it, I am thriving and gaining new information constantly through University. Without it, I would not be doing so. The main message this Adobe scholarship has embedded in my mind is that creativity and education combined can achieve a multitude of dreams and goals.

Creativity In and Out of the Classroom with Adobe Youth Voices

We believe that everyone has the power to create change – including (and especially) our youth. What everyone does not have, however, are the resources they need to bring their ideas to life.

At Adobe Youth Voices (AYV), we want to change that. We want to ignite creative confidence in youth by giving them the tools they need to create compelling visual stories that move people to take action in their communities. In our evolving world of media, the use of graphics, photographs and films is pervasive. AYV youth are learning the skills they need to solve for the issues they face in their communities today and eventually in the workplace as well.

2013 AYV Awards winning graphics

2013 AYV Awards winning graphics

Helping these students and seeing them grow is what inspires me to come to work every day. Amanda Tomchick fromSeattle, WA believes that the program changed her life. Alumni Zach James is now an intern with Butchershop Pro in San Francisco after working with their team at AYV Summit last year. And Kasiem Aboti Walters says that he now has the confidence he needs to perform his art in front of others.

This is exactly the type of news I love to hear, but they represent just 3 of the 33,500 students that participated in 2013. And it doesn’t stop there – more youth are submitting photo essays, music videos, and other forms of visual storytelling this year as part of the AYV Awards. Their work is amazing – take a look at some of it here and learn how to get involved.

AYV educator Claire Beach says it best in the video below: “These projects change the way [students] think about media and empower them to be better global citizens. I’m able to help youth tell visual stories about how they would solve real-world issues and prepare them for their creative future.”

We’re so inspired by what these students have already accomplished and can’t wait to see what they come up with this year. To the Amandas, Zachs, and Kasiems of the world – keep at it. We’re behind you all the way.

The Person That Works The Hardest Wins

GraceKimStudent Author: Grace Kim

Grace Kim is an AYV Scholarship recipient from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She participated in AYV at Lester B. Pearson Collegiate Institute. Grace is currently attending the Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto and majoring in Graphic Design.


This was the theme for the first assignment of my university career.  The project was for my “Colour in Context” class, where we had to create a t-shirt design with this phrase on it.  Everybody in the class interpreted this project in different ways and everybody’s project had a different look and feel – the only common thread was the phrase “the person that works the hardest wins.”

At Ontario College of Arts and Design University (OCADU), we all come from different places with different skills and experiences under our belt.  But the few things we do have in common is our love and passion for art and design, our goals and dreams of being able to pursue what we love and to be successful at it, and the hard work and dedication we put in in order to achieve those goals and dreams.

It was no different for me.  Although I was nervous about going to university and starting a new stage in my life, I was very excited as well.  I couldn’t wait to put myself in an environment where I could focus solely on what I wanted to do – which was to study and pursue design – and to have people around me who would teach, encourage, and inspire me.   In the two months that I have been attending OCADU, I have met so many amazing people and have learned so much from them as well as from my professors.  But most importantly, I have been learning more and more about myself each and every day – not only as a person, but also as a designer.  Even though I am in the graphic design program and I have been planning on pursuing graphic design for the past two years, I have started to want to learn different things, try different mediums and different types of design.  The variety of courses that I take give me a chance to do so, and even if I am not good at it at first, when I see the amazing things that other people can do, it inspires me and makes me want to challenge myself to go outside of my comfort zone and to just do it.  At this point in my life, I am not exactly sure of what I want to do, but I keep pushing myself and exploring all the different options and opportunities there are for me.

And most importantly, I always work hard and give my best effort.  To have a project that revolves around the theme of working hard as the first project of my university career has really helped to push me in the right direction and give me something to fall back on in times of stress and worry.  We are all sailing in this ocean called life, trying to find our destination even though we don’t know where it is.  If we give up, we’ll never find it.  But if we work hard and give our best, we will be able to find it even after all the twists and turns.  We may not “win” or get the outcome or grades we would have liked, but hard work never goes unrewarded — whether it’s recognition, a job, a scholarship, or even your own satisfaction, hard work will always bear fruit.  We just have to be patient, and wait for when it is our time to reach our destination.

Kim_1st post_photo2


The Vision Comes First

Essentials: The Vision Comes First

Having a creative vision isn’t just for Hollywood directors, but for anyone who sets out to make media that will matter to its audience.

To produce something that communicates your message in a compelling way takes forethought. This advance planning and design is how a trio of Adobe Youth Voices students – including Samry, a participant at the Fitzroy Learning Network Computer Clubhouse – focused their thinking for a new media project.

“Hopefully, the video will teach people to be understanding,” says Samry.

“My current project is going to be a combination of video and animation about refugees,” says Samry. She is working with two other people, and notes, “We are all refugees from different backgrounds.” They have a vision for their work: “Hopefully the video will teach people to be understanding and accepting of refugees that come to Australia.”

To this end, they have had to make a lot of choices in the course of the pre-production and production process. There are of course myriad ways to represent the issue, in any number of media formats.

Talking it through together, Samry says that they decided “part of our filming will be a conversation between the three of us about the hardest thing about being a refugee, and our experiences.” She explains it was a deliberate choice to do this “instead of interviewing because we wanted to show a personal experience rather than just talking about ourselves to the camera.”

Thinking about how they wanted their media work to resonate with the audience gave them direction at the outset of the process. They came up with their vision and worked backward from that to craft something that would help them carry out that vision.

Their design choices are key in this process, and Samry notes, “We hope to use animation to make statistics and stuff more interesting.” Being open to mixing media forms gives their project more creative potential. Being open, in general, to the wide array of media formats and tools – and to all the different things that are possible with storytelling, imagery, and sound, etc. – can help media artists realize their vision.

This has been true for Samry and her peers, who find that sometimes, during production, “We try something and if it doesn’t work with the project we will talk about changing it.” They are open to adapting their plans as they work, but the vision had to come first.

The Power Of Artistic Choices

Essentials: Power Of Artistic Choices

Her media project was due in just a few days, and the high school senior couldn’t focus. “I originally started with a completely different subject,” says Nicole, an AYV alum, “and while planning out that script, my aunt passed away.” It became clear to her that she needed to do the media project on her aunt – in her memory.

“I wasn’t quite sure how to do it,” Nicole reflects, “until I read a poem that my cousin had written in honor of my aunt. I wanted to have something just as inspiring.” So she set to work, intending to produce inspiring footage to pair with the poem she wrote. At the same time, she didn’t want the imagery to overwhelm her words.

Like all media makers, she was faced with a number of artistic choices. The ways that she negotiated them could detract from or lend even more power to her finished work. Nicole decided to minimize movement and sound, refrain from elaborate transitions, and use images directly related to the text of her poem. She shot the video to reflect her point of view, focusing in on her actions. All of these choices were very deliberate. By these means, she got the viewer to connect with her as the subject of the media work. She compels the audience to take her perspective in All I’m Left With.

“I started off showing myself getting ready to write, then writing out the first line of the poem,” and, she explains, “from there I switched back and forth between what I was doing and what I was thinking.” Some images, like the sunset and garden, directly illustrate her poem. Other shots capture what she says is her typical behavior, such as “holding my cross while I think, looking at photos.” These unguarded moments invite the audience in, perhaps even more so than if she talked directly to the camera.

Many other choices had to be made in the course of production. Nicole reports that she took simple shots first, without sound, then “added in any opacity changes, transitions, and sound effects later.” Still, she endeavored to retain a kind of simplicity in the film. “I used to think that more effects made the video more interesting,” she says, “but I guess ‘less is more’ was more the case in this situation.”

Having “less” ornamentation dignifies her subject, and brings the audience closer. These artistic choices not only shaped her piece, but also were part of a creative process that helped Nicole “sort things out for myself.” In the end, both media maker and consumer share the power of the experience.

Take Inspiration from the World Around You

Essentials: Take Inspiration From The World Around You

Where to go for a project idea? One that grabs you, and that you want to share with others? Amer, an Adobe Youth Voices artist from Amman, Jordan, says to look around you – and “follow your interest.”

“I get an idea from something that inspires me in my everyday life,” says Amer.

Coming up with an idea can be the hardest part of a media project. When it’s a good idea, often the work just flows. A good subject is motivating and open-ended. It should originate with – and be shaped by – the media artist. And, there’s no telling where a good idea might come from. For example, Amer takes his inspiration “from the news” or “sometimes I see something, or a problem in my community.” He keeps his eyes wide open to the possibilities because he wants “to make a difference in the world.”

Taking a moment to reflect, Amer says, “I remember one of my very first projects which really moved me to get up and work – and do something to express what I felt.”

“One evening a couple of years ago, I was watching news on TV, and they were talking about murders and arrests in Palestine where the other half of my family lives, while in our neighborhood not far from my house, there was a big wedding where music was loud and people dancing and singing happily, and it made me think how life can be really complicated, how some people suffer while other people don’t care – or maybe they just had to move on,” explains Amer.

The contrast really struck Amer at the time. He “wanted all people to be happy and dancing, not to suffer.” This well of feeling prompted him to create “No War,” a short video that depicted “the contradiction in our life” by interspersing music clips and news of war. It was his effort to evoke the same kind of emotional response in his audience that he had originally.

Sharing what inspires you is at the heart of youth media. It can be shooting video on your own, like Amer did to make “No War.” Or, it might be composing music, like Arabic rap, with a crew of friends – which is how he likes to express himself these days. Either way, Amer takes inspiration from his life and the lives of people in his community. Then he turns it into media that reveals something about the world, and carries his message.

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