What is Real

This Sunday I spent more hours than I would like to admit working on my thesis. I had been thinking about what type of online presence, if any, I might like my thesis to inhabit. I’m not necessarily convinced of the need to incorporating a true “multimedia” (audio, video, etc.) version of my project but considering that many of the elements are either written by hand or artifacts (not typed), I felt the need to get an idea of what the final project might “look like.” After toying with a number of programs, I decided to use canva.  Although there are some limitations, I like that it can be easily downloaded into a book format.  It took a long time to take pictures of my components and upload/organize them, but I think it was beneficial. 

After piecing together some of the pages, I noticed that this was a lot like curating, in that I am selecting specific artifacts to include and where to put them.  For this reason, I created a new working title “What is real,” to see how it meshes with what I’m doing.  Canva only allows for 30 pages per project but says that they can be downloaded as one pdf at the end.  I started by putting everything in chronological order (for my own sanity) but left some blank pages for the spots where I want to include the conversations with my dad.  I only got through the first 2 and a half segments and still have so much I would like to somehow include…..

canva and pdf links to each section below (not sure which is best for viewing)


https://www.canva.com/design/DACl0gFmj2I/view (link to canva for section 1)



canva page link for section 2



canva section 3



2 thoughts on “What is Real

  1. It’s very powerful and exciting to see these come together as collections I can see. It does make sense to use visual representations of your artifacts

    Absolutely you can produce your story in this fashion. My general question to consider is do you want the structure to be book like? There is nothing wrong at all with the narrative thread you choose, and you will have plenty to write about in terms of the process and impact of the memory creation.

    While I think it would be interesting to consider a mode that allowed different ways of sequencing, this needs to be your choice. Another issue with this as a publishing approach (as a PDF) means the story is more or less locked in as you construct it (which again is certainly your right to do) but in the consideration of an educational resource a PDF is not re-usable.

    I could see it also as an organized database of these artifacts that you could (or others could) create their own sequences, like putting different beads on a string. There are some open platforms that allows thus such as Omeka or another one called Scalar and there are other possibilities. I also wonder about the structure Canva does as a page turned book versus maybe something that would be more like a collage of separate artifacts.

    There are many ways to build.

    But maybe if Canva does allow for assembling of much smaller pieces, maybe it makes sense to do it more in a granular fashion.

    I would also encourage you to keep track of the sources of all your media, most are probably your own, but if you use another images, you should make sure (a) they are openly licensed for reuse and (b) that you provide attribution for media.

    Much we can talk about.. and I see no problems with hours spent on thesis work 😉


  2. Thanks Alan. I will check out the mentioned platforms for organizing my story. I’m definitley open to alternatives to a pdf/book format. There are some limits to canva and i know we discussed the possibility of playing with the order, etc. I still like that.


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