ds106 internaut Elizabeth Castillo recently came up with a Design Assignment I just couldn’t resist: “Create a movie poster for your website.” I kind of think of my blog as inspired by movies, so this assignment immediately appealed to me, and I made quick work of this —kept it minimalistic—but the tag line says it all 🙂
One of the elements of this course that is often overlooked is how cool the “Submit an Assignment” portion of the ds106 site is. It allows anyone to submit an assignment idea and everyone to do it. What’s more, when you link back and use the right tags your interpretation of the assignment shows up beneath it (see this assignment as an example of that). We’ve had an amazing amount of activity in this area of the course (more than 100 assignments submitted), and it’s a veritable treasure chest of assignments that have built-in examples for people to riff off whether or not they are part of the course. I’m going to dedicate a series of the ” ds106 99″ this week to the design of the ds106.us site, but Martha Burtis’s work with “Submit an Assignment” is absolutely one of the most powerful ways we have crowd sourced the teaching of the course itself. I mean I wouldn’t have been pushed to do this movie poster if it weren’t for this capability, and Elizabeth’s willingness to have fun with it. #ds106 FTW!
Update: One more thing, I did this poster entirely in GIMP. It can be a bit clumsy (I wonder how much of that is premised on my comfort with Photoshop?), but in terms of a free, open source Photoshop-alternative it’s top notch. This Summer I will be incorporating GIMP into the class as a free tool for the visual and design assignments. I’ll need to work on some tutorials, but it can more than get the job done, and I am increasingly more comfortable teaching it given I have been playing with it all semester for animated GIFs.