In-Depth 2022 Post #6

Progress Report

Since my last post, I’ve been working on more expansive, landscape composites. These composites involve combining parts of multiple photos into one. For a simple example, taking an image of a mountain with a sunny sky, and replacing the sky with a cloudy sky from another image. I wanted to experiment with some of the techniques from this YouTube channel called PhaseRunner: https://www.youtube.com/c/PhaseRunner, who makes a lot of these types of artworks.

My first idea was a desert landscape from Aladdin, with the cave of wonders as the main subject. This was was my sketch:

I tried to add some originality in the scene with the elevated cave. The character on the left is a sorcerer searching for the cave. Although the sketch looked good to me, I struggled with the editing. I decided to quit the project because I didn’t think I would be able to make it work. This is what I got done:

I had a lot of problems with this piece, I think because I didn’t plan out the editing well. The images I used for the desert were too different, which made the entire landscape look a bit off. I didn’t put lots of consideration into perspective, so I had to use a lot of warp on the images of the mountain (below the cave), the city in the horizon, and some of the deserts. Although probably doable, it’s very difficult to make inconsistent images match, especially for a learner like me. I should have spent more time looking for the matching images. For the cave, I couldn’t find good pictures of a roaring lion at the right perspective, so I decided to use shadows to create the cave myself. I think it turned out decent, but it took me a lot of time, which was the main downside of creating it without an image. Overall, the composite didn’t give off the expansive feeling I was going for. The landscape looked small and unimpressive.

Following this project, I brainstormed another idea: a rocky valley with gemstones, a leaking giant cauldron, and three travellers. This was inspired by a videogame I played. This time, I decided to use Photoshop to sketch my idea because it would be more convenient to reference while editing. This was my sketch:

I spent a lot of time trying to look for good images to create the landscape. I tried putting a lot of different images together for this composite, but nothing stuck. However, I had good, high-quality images for the individual item/subjects (cauldron, shield, gems, travellers). I didn’t try editing this project. This was the best I could do with the landscape:

After the previous two unsuccessful projects, I decided to be more easy on myself and only use one image for the landscape. My idea was a mountain with tentacles climbing out of the ground, in a thunderstorm. My inspiration was from the Kraken sea monster. Instead of creating my own landscape, I first found the landscape I wanted to use, and sketched my idea on top. Here’s the sketch:

I’m not finished the composite yet, but I’ve got the important parts done. It doesn’t look amazing, but I think it’s a good start. I didn’t follow everything in my sketch. I cut out the faded mountains in the back, so I didn’t include the eye and the background tentacles. In the edit, I added a plane and some lightning to make the storm more convincing and spice up the image. I’m not planning to include the holes on the side of the mountain anymore, but I’m still planning to add some gooey liquid dripping from the tentacles. This is the project so far:

For this project, I also finally started using custom brushes. In Photoshop, custom brushes are used for manually painting parts of an image. For example, there are brushes for grass, hair, fur, clouds, smoke, etc. I looked for and found some great free brush packs online. In this composite, I used a cloud brush to paint some extra clouds, and will be using a grass brush to make the hole in the mountain more realistic.

As always, I’ve kept up with watching and learning new techniques from different channels. Some techniques work for me, while others don’t. I’ve also done lots of experimenting myself with different ways of doing the same job, and seeing which method makes the best result, or the one I find best. After I’m finished the “Kraken in mountain” project, I’m want to try creating realistic Pokemon, inspired this channel, Benny: https://www.youtube.com/c/BennyProductions which I’ve been watching since the start of my in-depth. This is a video of his edits: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99tbYzI0cv4&t=526s. This is super different from my previous projects again, so I might struggle a bit. Hopefully, I’m able to create something I’m happy with.

In-Depth Night

For In-Depth Night, I’ll be creating a poster board gallery with all my final projects printed. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to show my skill (Photoshopping) live, because my laptop can’t run Photoshop well, and the screen is too small. The gallery will capture and show the progress I’ve made throughout these 5 months, and also display the different types of projects I’ve learned to create. The audience will be able to ask questions about my projects like, how I made them, my inspirations for making them, or other questions about Photoshop.

In-Depth Post #5

Progress Report

Since my last post, I started working on my project practicing highlights. I finished the project, and it turned out pretty well. However, I accidentally deleted the file and couldn’t get it back. Oops. This is the sketch I had for the composite:

Since I accidentally deleted this composite, I wanted to create another project to demonstrate using highlights and shadows to my mentor (and the class). Since it wasn’t long before my next mentor meeting, I just wanted to make a simple composite of putting a subject into a background. These are the two images I chose:

I chose this background because it had some distinct light sources to use for highlights. However, I also tried placing the subject on several other similar backgrounds before settling on this image. I chose this image of Spiderman as my subject because his perspective matched the background, he fit the context, and he’s an awesome superhero. This was the end result:

I was super happy with how this composite turned out. I got carried away making it perfect and spent around 2 hours in Photoshop editing it. Because the composite was looking so great after I was finished with the lighting, I also decided to add rain to further blend the composite together. In addition to the main focus of highlights and shadows, I spent time matching the colour and luminosity of the two images, adding glow to the light sources in the background, and toned the entire image using the camera raw filter at the end.

My mentor was very impressed and happy about my progress with this project. During that meeting, my mentor taught me more about editing in camera raw and gave me an overview of its features and how it’s used in addition to Photoshop. Camera raw has the exact same functions as Lightroom, a more simple photo editing (but not manipulating) software created by Adobe. The difference is that Lightroom is used for quickly editing a large batch of photos, so it’s popular among photographers.

This week (the week after my mentor meeting) I got six different unedited photos from my mom, a photographer, and edited them in camera raw. These are side-by-side comparisons. Original photo on the left, edited photo on the right:

 

I think that the edits made a huge difference, especially for the darker images. Photo edits are about revealing as much detail in the image as possible, and being subtle with your edits. A super helpful feature of camera raw is the side-by-side comparison viewing of the original and edited image. It helped me notice if I was going overboard with some edits and losing the tone of the original photo.

After finishing these photo edits, I decided to get started early on a movie poster I wanted to create for a new Dr. Strange movie (Marvel). This was my idea sketch:

I started by listing the characters I wanted to include in the poster. When doing my sketch, I also did quick searches online to make sure there were free images of those characters in the right pose/position. After placing the characters, I brainstormed ideas for the background and other objects or effects in the poster. I ended up following up on how the characters were placed, discarding some object and effect ideas, and adding others I thought of as I worked. This was the end result:

I was happy with the result of this poster as well. I think I did really well for my first time making a more detailed composite like this. This project challenged my skills in staying organized with layers and working with layer masks. The final edit had 68 layers. I practiced creating highlights, shadows, glows and matching colour and brightness from different images. One big critique I have for this poster is that the image of the main character, Dr. Strange, isn’t very high quality. Overall, I think this project was a big success and allowed me to apply and demonstrate my skills well. For this project, I spent around 7 hours in Photoshop.

Throughout these past few weeks, I’ve also continued to watch YouTube videos to learn new Photoshopping techniques. Some ideas I have for my next projects are creating a landscape composite or editing a realistic mythical creature.

Mentor

What kinds of learning opportunities does the mentor provide to expose you to new learning?

My mentor provides sources I can learn new skills from. This was a YouTube playlist that my mentor recommended near the start of my project: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7JpMMpENaD3KL_lvmw4eS5U5AD746yKB. It helped set a strong foundation and understanding of the software for me.

What kinds of learning opportunities exist to reinforce new learning?

For my in-depth, the best way for me to reinforce my learning is through practice, by creating my own projects. By creating my own projects, I’m exposed to new ways to use my skills. By gaining more experience, I can work faster and more efficiently on future projects.

What kinds of opportunities exist that might accelerate learning?

A great opportunity for accelerating learning is online videos and articles. There are lots of free sources that show me new tips about Photoshop. There are videos about common mistakes, ways to practice, and different techniques. I’ve been able to learn a lot faster because of these sources out there.

When you get together what do you talk about?

When my mentor and I meet, we talk about my progress since our last meeting. I show my mentor what I’ve been working on, and my mentor provides feedback for my work, suggesting ways I could improve. We talk about new projects I’ll be working on, with my mentor providing guidance on how I should or could go about the project. As well, when learning something new in Photoshop, such as the camera raw filter, my mentor often gives me an overview of it and teaches me some important tips she knows through screen sharing. As well, my mentor is always available to answer any questions I have, both about Photoshop and about my learning.

What is going particularly well in your mentoring relationship right now?

My mentoring relationship has been going overall very well. My mentor provides good relevant suggestions and feedback on my work, and I think that she answers my questions very well. Lately, my mentor has been helping me brainstorm projects I can work on. Throughout the project, we’ve always stayed updated with each other about my progress, and our meeting schedules. I send her emails weekly about my progress with any questions I have, and that’s been working great so far.

What are you learning about one another?

Something I’m learning about my mentor is what she’s experienced with. She has a lot of valuable experience in Photoshop, but in some areas, like creating lighting, she doesn’t have any experience with. However, she still provided valuable tips like choosing images with matching lighting for my composites. I think something my mentor is learning from me is what types of projects and style of editing I enjoy. So far, I’ve really been enjoying experimenting with different techniques for creating coloured highlights. As well, I enjoy blending images together smoothly, which I’ve gotten a lot of practice in through my last few projects.

The Book Thief – Theme Park Project

For this project, my group and I designed a theme park based on the book “The Book Thief.” In the park, we created themed character spots, shows, rides, and merchandise. Everything is compiled in the brochure linked at the end of the post. Below is a list of what I contributed to this project.

Hard

  • Brainstormed and created all merchandise, including descriptions (connections to the book), images, and pricing
  • Designed and created the merchandise pages of the brochure

Soft

  • Helped brainstorm ideas for rides and shows
  • Helped decide rides, shows, and character spots to include
  • Did my diligent duty as a team member and supported my group throughout the learning process

Brochure Link: https://www.canva.com/design/DAE88_sO3TA/mUBriokVpHPfhT8wcpyWew/view?utm_content=DAE88_sO3TA&utm_campaign=designshare&utm_medium=link2&utm_source=sharebutton

In-Depth Post #4

Progress Report

Since my last post, I started working on some projects of my own to use what I’ve learned in Photoshop. As well, I’ve been watching lots of videos from this YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/PiXimperfect. The channel provides lots of unique ways to use Photoshop for different edits, and it also has a lot of info that’s good to know for Photoshop users. I decided to create composites (combining multiple images), as they involve and allow me to practice many of Photoshop’s different tools and features. For my first project, I practiced different ways to cut out parts of an images, and using filters to make the images match in the composite. For my next two projects, I wanted to practice using blending modes (article explaining blending modes: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/using/blending-modes.html).

For all three projects, I used free photos from https://unsplash.com/, https://pixabay.com/, and https://www.pexels.com/. I will probably be using these three sites for future projects as well.

Cutout and Filters Composite

Images Used and Sketch

     

Blendmode Composite #1

Images Used 

Blendmode Composite #2

Images Used and Sketches

   

I spent around one hour on my first composite and around two hours on my blendmode composites (not including time spent brainstorming, sketching idea, and finding images). While making my first projects, I realized there were many different ways to do the same thing in Photoshop and spent a lot of time trying different tools out. I hope that as I get more experience in the software, I’ll be more decisive while working and be able to edit more complicated composites quicker.

For my next projects, I want to practice creating highlights and shadows (article explaining highlights and shadows: https://www.adobe.com/ca/creativecloud/photography/discover/highlights-and-shadows.html) as the next level to blending images together, inspired by this tutorial: https://youtu.be/yUPIChL7_x8. I will be creating a composite with a subject and a strong light source in the background, so I can edit highlights on the subject. So far, I have a sketch finished and images ready to go. After finishing the highlights composite, I will start working on some photo editing projects.

I’ve also started to decide on ideas for my final projects to be shown in my learning centre. I will create several composites, since that’s what I find most interesting. I will also hope to do some realistic photo editing, create a poster (for a show or movie), and make a step-by-step explanation recording of what I’m doing to create a simple composite.

Mentorship

What has been my most difficult mentoring challenge so far?  Why?

For me, there haven’t been any difficult mentoring challenges so far.

What is working well? Why?

I’ve always stayed in close contact with Elizabeth (my mentor) and kept her up to date on what I’m working on. Every meeting, we review what I’m planning to do the week, and I make sure to email Elizabeth the sketches and images I’ve prepared before starting the project. When I have a problem I can’t find a solution online to, I can email my questions to her. I haven’t had any issues with this, as I can usually work around my problems, and still work on the project.

I found the “30 days of Photoshop” tutorial series Elizabeth sent me after our first meeting super helpful: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7JpMMpENaD3KL_lvmw4eS5U5AD746yKB. I’ve been applying many skills I’ve learned from these tutorials into my projects.

What could be working better?  How can you make sure this happens?

My mentor and I could both come a little more prepared before our meetings. Right now, our meetings are more freeflow. We can exchange emails before the meeting about what we want to go over to make sure we don’t miss anything. So far however, we always been able to cover everything and haven’t run into any big problems.

In-Depth 2022 Post #3

Progress Report

For the past two weeks, I’ve completed the entire 3-hour Photoshop tutorial. I’ve learned how to:

Working with type

Using layer styles and effects

Using content-aware to extend simple backgrounds

Resizing, and how resolution works

Using the rectangle and elliptical marquee tool

Creating clipping masks

Using the quick selection tool

Using layer masks

Using select and mask

Using transform tools

Using the healing brush

Using content-aware scale

While learning these basic functions, I also learned common shortcuts to make editing faster, and many other minor functions related to each tool. However, from my perspective, my biggest takeaway from this tutorial was getting to know and understand the layout of the Photoshop software. Understanding Photoshop’s workspace will make learning new editing skills and niches much easier.

As a side note, the tutorial, being for beginners, was very straightforward and easy to follow. The images I edited were sample images provided by the video, and they were designed to show how different tools worked. I will be facing more problems and struggles as I start editing my own projects.

That being said, my plan for the next two weeks is to start creating my first composite project (composite meaning to use multiple images). Under my mentor’s suggestions, I will brainstorm an idea, sketch out the idea, and gather possible images to use for the first week. I will get started editing in Photoshop after reviewing my ideas with my mentor in our next meeting this week.

Mentor

Prompts from Post #2: Mentorship

How did your mentor gain their experience/expertise?

Elizabeth caught interest in photography from courses in high school. She worked on community projects like the yearbook. She largely self-taught herself her photography-related skills, signing up for workshops, courses, and lectures. Before becoming a photography instructor, she also taught art and math at a university. She applied her photography skills to math in a unique way, using her photos to show concepts in geometry. Being a photographer, she has been working with Photoshop and Lightroom for a long time to edit her works.

What were those experiences like for your mentor?

Photography used to be a side hobby of hers, so it was difficult to manage her time. Photography was also a very expensive hobby, with professional equipment costing thousands of dollars. She also had a family to manage at the time. Everything became better when she pursued photography full-time, becoming a photography instructor. She’s always been most drawn to nature and wildelife photography.

What wisdom have you gained from your mentor so far?

The most important advice I’ve gotten from Elizabeth is to always plan out a project before heading straight into editing. I should sketch my idea out beforehand, and also gather the images I want to edit. Skipping the planning stage, I would be indecisive while editing, and waste a lot of time thinking or undoing edits.

What have you learned so far, in terms of facilitation strategies, that might contribute to your own development as a mentor?

Something I liked about Elizabeth’s mentoring is that in the first meeting, she wanted me to clarify what my goals were. She asked similar examples of projects that I wanted to create, so that she could provide resources she thought matched my learning goals. The lesson I took was that as a mentor, I should know my mentee’s path and make sure they’re on the right path. By doing this, I can help my mentee attain their skill efficiently, avoiding unnecessary work irrelevant to the project. I can provide resources and personal experienced tailored to their goals.

 

Prompts from Post #3: The context of mentorship

What went particularly well during your mentoring sessions?

The mentoring session was very productive. Elizabeth and I went over our time commitments and schedules. We talked about ways my mentor would be helping me throughout the project. After our first meeting, she emailed me with several resources directed towards the skills I mentioned I wanted to learn, which I found very convenient and much appreciated. Elizabeth also communicated clearly what she could and couldn’t teach me. For example, something I was interested in learning was artificial lighting effects. However, she only worked with natural lighting, so if I wanted to, I would need to learn this skill on my own.

What relationship challenges did you face?

Initially in the meeting, both my mentor and I weren’t sure about parts of my project, or the mentoring relationship. We started were a lot of unanswered, simple questions, such as my goals, the time commitment, my current knowledge and experience in Photoshop, and my mentor’s experience in Photoshop. At the start of the session, I wasn’t very open about my ideas. However, we ended up clarifying our assumptions in the end. Throughout the entire meeting, both of us were very engaged and listened to each other, which was very important for our clarifications.

What learning challenges emerged?

Prior to the mentoring session, my mentor wasn’t clear on what we would be going over for our first meeting, so she didn’t prepare anything specific. We also spent a lot of time clarifying and adjusting my goals for the project. Additionally, my mentor had no idea where I was in terms of skill, so I showed her the tutorial I followed. Something we didn’t go over in our first meeting was how I could reach my mentor quickly for questions.

In-Depth 2022 Post #2

My Mentor

The person who will be mentoring me is Elizabeth Gray. She’s a professional photographer and focuses mainly on street photography and is very experienced with Lightroom and Photoshop. Elizabeth has been teaching photography for over 25 years. Her website: https://photographybyelizabethgray.com/ introduces her background, her works, and her photography instruction classes. I will be meeting online with Elizabeth next week and will be writing more about this mentorship in my next post.

Progress Report

Since last week, I’ve been learning more about image editing in general, started working with Photoshop, and started following an online guide on YouTube.

I’ve done some research into editing workflow. I found it useful to watch videos of professionals creating projects from start to finish. This channel was one of my favourites: https://www.youtube.com/c/BennyProductions/videos. Following videos also gave me an idea of what common tools I would be using in Photoshop, and introduce me to some core features of the program. This was very helpful when starting the tutorial. I was quicker to grasp how parts of the program worked.

Before starting the tutorial, I tried out Photoshop on my own first. I used dummy images and tried to figure out how I could do some simple tasks. I thought that my learning would benefit a lot more by fiddling with the program myself beforehand. The tutorial I’m following is linked here: https://youtu.be/IyR_uYsRdPs. So far, I’ve learned how to combine multiple images, and to use the transform tool to resize, rotate, crop, and distort an image. I’ve learned a distinctive piece of Photoshop, called layers. Layers allow you to stack different images on top of one another, and hide certain images within your project. Layers are very important when working with all kinds of Photoshop projects. Following the guide, I’ve also learned how to adjust a photo’s tones, colors, and hues.

I’m happy with my progress so far. I’m hoping to learn some valuable tips from my mentor next week, and I will continue following the online tutorial. For my first meeting with my mentor, I’ve prepared some general and specific questions that I’m curious about.

In-Depth 2022 Post #1 – Getting started

About In-Depth

In-depth is a project we do yearly in the TALONS program. Over a span of five months, we will diligently learn a new skill that interests us or will be useful to us in the future. In-depth has two main goals: a) to know something about everything and everything about something, and b) to learn what others tell you is important and learn what you decide is important. In school, we are usually taught many subjects to develop a breadth of knowledge. We are told what to learn and how to learn it. Whereas, in the in-depth project we aim to learn a great deal about one skill chosen by ourselves, and with a learning strategy and plan tailored to ourselves. Some examples of previous in-depth skills include cooking, coding, art, knitting, animation, video-editing, and 3D modelling. The project is designed for us to learn something new in a new way, outside of the regular school curriculum.

My Project

This year, I chose to learn graphics/image editing and manipulation. I will learn to edit images and photos, and complete specific tasks such as manipulating color, repairing flaws, and removing or adding people and objects. I will learn how the software works and be able to competently use its tools and features. I will be able to create realistic designs for posters, cards, website elements, and more.

I hope to learn image editing for future uses in school, work, and personal use. It’s a very universal skill that I believe will regularly come in handy for me. In my current leadership project, for example, my team needed to create posters to advertise our event. Image editing skills would have been valuable to create an attractive poster to encourage more people to support our event. Image-editing can also be used in more professional spaces, such as creating quality edits to photos.

Learning Plan

Goals

I want to create a gallery of projects including edited photos, posters, cards, and website elements. To focus on this skill exclusively, I will be editing artworks provided by others, either through third parties on the internet, or through personal connections, such as friends, classmates, or family. Building these projects will allow me to demonstrate the skills I’ve learned. I will start with small assignments to learn individual functions of the software and then move towards bigger projects.

Timeline

My Mentor

As of January 27, I do not have a confirmed mentor yet. However, I am in contact with someone who has told me that they are interested in this role.

Progress Report

After some research comparing my different options, I decided to learn Adobe Photoshop. I chose Photoshop over other alternatives as it’s the most well-known and used application, which makes finding a mentor and resources much easier for this project. I considered learning GIMP instead, as it was free but with fewer features. However, because of the length of in-depth, I thought learning a more advanced application like Photoshop would be more sensible. If I enjoy this project, I may learn GIMP in the future as well.

I’ve also looked up some tutorials online that may be helpful. This is a YouTube tutorial I will probably be using to learn Photoshop’s basics.

My next step is learning the workflow of image-editing. In other words, the steps of editing a photo, image, or creating a project from beginning to finish. Since I learned video-editing for this project last year, I hope to find some similarities and pick up on an arranged workflow much quicker.

Developing the Leaders Around You

“Developing the Leaders Around You” is a book written by John C. Maxwell. He writes about the importance of developing potential leaders to achieve your team’s goals. The book outlines the key principles to influence and motivate others, and the benefits of growing potential leaders. In this blog post, I will describe three points this book raises, underline their relevance to me, and possible applications to the leadership projects and adventure trips planning.

The Leadership Challenge

This point demonstrates the difficulties of training leaders. The book states that:

  • Leaders are hard to find
  • Leaders are hard to gather
  • Leaders are hard to unite
  • Leaders are hard to keep

Potential leaders are rare. They are self-directed, having their own ideas and goals. If you don’t keep them engaged in your team with new challenges and learning opportunities, they won’t stay put. The independent nature of leaders provides many challenges, but they can develop into valuable and unreplaceable team members.

In my life, I’m often presented with missions that involve working within a team. Whether it be a school project, a side-hobby project, or an extracurricular club or team. I’m currently in a robotics team, with several great potential leaders. I know that I can keep my team together by finding new problems to solve and new improvements to add to our robot.

Our leadership projects and adventure trips planning require a lot of communication and provide many leadership opportunities. I think that a practical way to apply “The Leadership Challenge” point is to correctly delegate committees and tasks. Leaders need to be given work that they find engaging and rewarding. We should give each student a choice to make between the project, committee, and tasks they believe would best suit their development.

It is easier to teach what is right than to do what is right.

“Setting an example is not the main means of influencing others, it is the only means.” ― Albert Einstein.

This point shows that doing what is right is much more powerful than saying or teaching what is right. Simply talking is much easier than actually doing. In fact, this phenomenon of saying but not doing is so common that we have a special word for such people: hypocrites. The book also illustrates this point using a vacation-themed analogy. Leaders who just direct others to complete tasks are labelled “travel agents.” They send people to their destination. On the other hand, leaders who not only direct but also work hands-on with others are labelled “tour guides.” They take people to their destination.

In my life, the “show, don’t tell” point is relevant in an endless number of places. One of the best ways to implement it is with younger kids. Since they’re still in an early stage of growth, it’s much easier for them to be influenced. Thus, it’s all the more important to be a good role model. I can set examples of good communication for my little brother. During my volunteer sessions as a Canskate program assistant, I can show simple traits like being helpful.

This principle can also be flexibly applied to various situations during our leadership project and adventure trip planning. Throughout the entire planning phase, we should always be demonstrating good teamwork traits as committees. However, this point may also be applied to more specific situations. For example, if someone is off task, the rest of the group should stay focused on their work. While it would be good to give them a reminder, we shouldn’t be constantly nagging them. This would create a disagreeable environment. Instead, if we all stay on task, the person would realize that they should be contributing as well without being told explicitly.

Six Levels of Growth

Each person responds differently to development. This point describes leadership growth through stages. It divides people into six levels of growth:

LEVEL 6: Growth that allows them to handle any job

LEVEL 5: Growth that allows them to take others higher

LEVEL 4: Growth that takes them to a higher level job

LEVEL 3: Growth that makes them able to reproduce themselves in their job

LEVEL 2: Growth that makes them capable in their job

LEVEL 1: Some Growth

Each higher level is harder to achieve, and the pool of people shrinks as you climb the ladder. There are much fewer people in level 6 than level 1. Each person will often plateau at one of the six levels of development.

I can definitely relate to the six levels of growth. Personally, I know a lot of people on level 2, being capable in their job. I also find myself on level 2 in a lot of areas in my life. The difference between level 2 and level 3 is the ability to reproduce themselves in their job. In other words, to develop others to complete their job. I think a good way to take this step is through the Feynman Technique, which involves explaining what you’ve learned in the simplest way possible. By learning like this, you exercise your teaching abilities and make the advancement from level 2 to level 3. Here’s a video explaining the Feynman Technique in detail.

As a grade 10, the six levels of growth will be an extremely useful tool during the leadership project and adventure trips planning. This is because it gives me an accurate representation of my leadership abilities and also directs me to the next step to improve. Say in an aspect of planning, I was in level 2. With knowledge of this point, I would know that my next step is to teach others to complete my job. After I feel that I’m proficient in level 3, it would be a good time to move to level 4, a higher level job, or take on more responsibility and challenges.

 

Think about how these principles may be relevant in your life, and how you can apply them to develop leaders around you. Thanks for reading!

References

Maxwell, J. C. (2014). Developing the Leaders Around You. HarperCollins Leadership.

A quote by Albert Einstein. (n.d.) Goodreads. https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/84604-setting-an-example-is-not-the-main-means-of-influencing

Eminent Practice Interview Reflection

The practice interview was an interesting and unique experience. I found the four different interviews my group conducted were surprisingly different. It showed how the way people conduct interviews can vary a great deal. We each had our personal strengths and weaknesses both as interviewers and interviewees. This activity was also the first time I was formally interviewed. The experience of being the interviewee contrasted heavily with being the interviewer. I felt that because I had to spend much more thought into answering questions, I was more engaged and active in the conversation. A difficult part of being the interviewee for me was deciding how to answer an open-ended question. Typically, I was presented with several appropriate ways to answer a question. Sometimes, being indecisive, I would try to combine multiple points but it often didn’t work out well. This taught me to be more definitive with my answers in future interviews. When I stuck to one point, it usually came across as clearer and more influential to the interviewer.

I received three general feedback points as the interviewer. Firstly, I showed attentive listening through body language and engagement. I also had an open posture and looked interested. Lastly, were that my questions were creative and relevant. From my point of view, I agree that these three points were things I did well. My main stretch from the feedback was that I could speak more louder and confidently when acknowledging answers. For me, I think this critique is very relevant. Acknowledging answers is important during an interview because it makes the interviewee feel valued. If the interviewee had spent lots of time and thought to provide an answer, they would appreciate their effort to be recognized. This is definitely something I’ll take note of during my real eminent interview. If my interviewee gives a response that is thoughtful and useful for me, I will always acknowledge their insight and try to form connections or ask a follow-up question to show that I’m engaged.