Natasha Pikulinska

Semester 2 – Week 1

Class notes:

  • 9 weeks to come up with a project idea, experiment with it and polish it
  • Instead of The Takeover, this year we will hold The Summer Show
  • Theme for this semester is animal

Week 2

Animal lecture notes:

  • Animal is truly a broad topic
  • We watched lots of animal-related films, one long and a couple of short films on Vimeo
  • Some sketches I drew during the lecture:

Tutorial 1 – reflections

  • I will try to separate my normal entires from project entries (two different pages), as well as color code my blocks. For that, I will need help of Rebecca, whom I have just contacted. Changes will happen soon!
  • I will try to limit the amount of research and instead, post about my project every day (which means that everyday = new animal!)
  • I will post everyday for a month (March 5th), and from that moment, think about developing my project more.
  • I will start everyday updates from tomorrow, since I didn’t stumble into any animals other than my cat today!

Week 3

Workshop notes:

Hello again! If you’re wondering where my project entries have gone to, I can tell you that they got a separate page! That means less confusion and better navigation! Now, onto the workshop. We had two sections: the lost and found. During the lost section, we had a lecture about animals and extinct species, made notes, and collectively took part in a “ritual” – where we apologized to the extinct species.

In the second part, the Found, we opened our packages and found out what to do with the supplies we got!

Week 4

Workshop notes:

Hello again! This week we presented our animal and brain-stormed ideas for group projects!

My animal – Lucanus Acidus

Week 5

Welcome back! Here’s a short recap of the workshop this week:

  • Everyone presented their ideas for group workshop;
  • We voted for one idea;
  • The winning idea was a inter-species conversation made of sounds we find to represent our animals;
  • Each one of us chose a concept – for me, it was ‘connection’
  • For week 7, we have to make a PowerPoint presentation for one project which reminds us of that concept;
  • Then, we need to find a way in which this project relates to our group project;

Semester 2

Entry 1: 29/09/2020

EXPERIMENTATION:
I have generally outlined my plans towards the course I expect my project to follow, as well as described the basic idea that will probably sprout into something bigger as I will continue with my experiments. I have decided that I want to portray process, which is an integral part of nature, through different languages and a poem. The poem will be originally written in English, then translated to another language, and so forth, repeating the process until I get to the final language. Then, the final translation will be translated into English again, and both versions will be compared. I have already selected 7 languages I want to use for this project, including the ones I already know – Polish and English, with the latter starting the series of translations. The languages I want to learn for this project are: Japanese, Welsh, Spanish, Russian, and Korean. I do recognize the effort that will be required from me in order to successfully finish my project, thus I decided to only learn the basics of the listed languages, as well as come up with a schedule that will help me learn the languages in time. The schedule is as follows:

Monday – Welsh,
Tuesday – Spanish,
Wednesday – Korean,
Thursday – Japanese,
Friday – Russian,
Saturday – Welsh,
Sunday – Spanish.


I have made this list with the awareness that the easiest language for me to learn would be Russian due to similarities to my native tongue, and the most difficult one from the list would be Welsh since its structure is entirely different from any of the languages I know.
The poem will be written with short sentences, due to my limited skills in those languages, but I do aim to learn as many words and structures as I possibly can over the course of these 12 weeks.
For the languages, I will use online resources and apps such as Duolingo, as well as my Japanese textbooks.

Entry 2: 30/09/2020 23:13

I have managed to master 5 Spanish topics on Duolingo last night, and I’m very confident with the speed I’m learning at! Below is the screenshot proof, and I’ll update later with my Korean progress. Adiós!

Entry 3: 01/10/2020 20:21

안녕하세요! I managed to learn the entire hangul (Korean alphabet) and made some notes from the grammar. Unfortunately, as I finally finished learning the alphabet it was 6 in the morning, which resulted in me being way too tired to be able to learn the grammar.

Entry 4: 02/10/2020 19:15

こんばんは皆さん!私の名前はナタシャです。私の日本語はまだ悪いです、でもがんばっています!

Yesterday I practiced the Japanese language. Since I already knew some Japanese before, it took me much less time to get through the material on Duolingo, and I managed to master more topics than usually!

Tutorial 1 – thoughts and improvements

Talking to Miranda, our main tutor on today’s individual’s tutorial has given me some new ideas for improvement and changes I’d like to make in the experimental phase of my project! Some of them are:

  • an audio recording of some of the vocabuary, phrases and grammar I’ve learned everyday
  • the recording will be accompanied with a simple animation of a different character of mine each day!
  • I’ll try my best to implement poetry into my experimentation as soon as possible

Entry 5: 03/10/2020 19:13

As I have written in the post above, from now on I’ll try my best to upload a video summarising everything I’ve learned. Here is the summary video from yesterday’s Russian study session. Enjoy!

Edit: I’ve noticed my mispronounciation of the letter Ю, I read it as “yo”, where in reality it should be pronounced as “yoo/yu”.

Entry 6: 04/10/2020 19:49

Hello! I’m sorry for how small this update is, I was distracted by some problems of mine and didn’t have enough time to learn Welsh. Fortunately, I have 2 days per week for learning Welsh, so I will be able to catch up soon!

Week 2:

Entry 7: 05/10/2020 23:38

Hello! Due to having to tend to some of my problems as well as an appointment with a mental health specialist, I was unable to find time to record and edit a video today, out of yesterday’s Spanish practice. However, I would be happy to generally explain what I learned yesterday!

  • Some idioms,
  • Shopping vocabulary
  • Pres. tense 1st person verb endings + some grammar
  • School vocabulary

Entry 8: 06/10/2020 19:19

Hello again! I’m very sorry for the lack of a video, I’ll try my best to record something tomorrow. Yesterday I learned:

  • Food vocabulary
  • I like/I don’t like sentences
  • Some pres. tense sentences

Entry 9: 07/10/2020 21:08

Hello! As promised, I made a video for today. Enjoy!

Entry 10: 09/10/2020 22:21

Hello! I’m really sorry for not updating the blog yesterday, as well as not preparing a video for today. Since my mental health hasn’t been the best lately, I decided to take a short break from daily updates. However, I’ll try my best to prepare something for tomorrow! As for today, I’ll learn more Russian and finally make use of the Cyrillic stickers I made for my keyboard!

Entry 11: 11/10/2020 22:12

Hello again! I’m sorry for my updates becoming infrequent, in my defense I can only say that it’s the result of my increasing depression and stress caused by having to move back to my home country due to financial difficulties. However, you don’t have to worry about my project not succeeding, because even if I fail to update, I always try to learn as much as possible every day and practice the knowledge I already obtained. Here is my Duolingo streak to prove that I have been learning every day:

Even though I didn’t prepare a video with some of the phrases/grammar I learned, here’s a video showing how many Spanish lessons I mastered on Duolingo!

Week 3:

Notes from workshop 1

Yesterday I participated in the first Interdisciplinary Practice workshop online. Since I have online teaching and I couldn’t come today to do my part in the group project, I’m still waiting for tomorrow to plant an acorn like the rest of my group did. Thus, my reflections on that matter will be updated tomorrow, along with photos from the planting process. Today, however, I will write down everything I thought to be important or interesting from the lecture part.

There will be a series of five workshops this semester, starting from this one titled “Forager and Farmer”. During this workshop, everyone was given an opportunity to freely explore the topic of nature by finding an acorn and planting it with the rest of the group.

The second workshop, “Experimental and Reflection” will give us the opportunity to reflect on everything we did during workshop 1, starting to form ideas towards the group project.

The third workshop, “Propose and Pitch” will be centered around giving everyone the equal opportunity to propose their ideas of a collaborative project to the entire group, and one idea will be selected through majority vote.

The fourth workshop, “Research” will give everyone an opportunity to present their research that will help with carrying on the group project.

The final workshop, “Experimental” will be when the collaborative project will be realized.

I’ve also made notes of some of the most interesting facts about trees and nature that have been mentioned in the PowerPoint presentation. Some of them are:

  • Trees have existed for 370 years
  • Oak trees do not bear fruit until they are at least 20 years old. After that, they produce 2000 acorns per year
  • Only one out of 10000 acorns will grow to be an oak tree
  • Plant blindness is the human inability to see how important plants are for the entire ecosystem.
  • Some scientific studies are proving the assumption that plants are sentient beings, who are capable of making informed choices.

Entry 12: 17/10/2020 22:26

Hello. I’m really sorry for not updating for almost the entire week, but as I said before it’s a very stressful time for me. In a week, I will fly back to Poland and my updates should become more frequent, most probably even daily. I’m sorry for not keeping my promise of updating with the process of planting the acorn, I ended up not feeling well enough to leave my room, but my boyfriend was able to plant one for me.

Before I get to the language learning update, I’d like to make a slight change in the format of the updates. During the last tutorial, me and my tutor decided that it would be the best for me to upload a short video explaining what I learned everyday. That seemed like an easy task at the beginning, but it turned out to require way too much energy for the editing than I thought it would, since usually one minute video took me an hour or more to edit. That’s a lot of time I could spend on learning the languages and practicing poetry. That’s why I have an idea connecting the two practices: I decided, that each day I will try to make a short poem from the vocabulary I’ve learned. Of course, be easy on me, as those will not be masterpieces – not with such a limited vocabulary. It will probably be very difficult at the beginning, but it’s a great way to practice both language and poetry.

Now, onto the language update – yesterday I was learning Russian. I wish I could start with a poem like described, but I didn’t prepare well enough to be able to write a poem now – however, I will try to write one for tomorrow’s Welsh update.

Week 5:

Entry 13: 27/10/2020

Hello! I’m sorry for not updating for a long time – a really, REALLY long time. Last week I was occupied with moving back to Poland, and I got here safely on Sunday (despite a few problems with the journey, but I’m glad I have it past me). I will still update with the tutorial and workshop lectures, but for today, I will focus on yesterday’s Welsh update. As I will mention tomorrow, during the tutorial with Miranda I decided to try and experiment with concrete poetry, since for now I am limited in my knowledge of the languages. It was inspired by the recent events in Poland regarding the new anti-abortion law and protests that followed right after that. For more information visit https://abortion-in-poland.carrd.co/

Entry 14: 29/10/2020 06:39 (CET/UTC+1)

Good morning, I’m sorry for not updating yesterday like I promised I would, I got really tired in the afternoon and went to sleep after 18:00. Because of that, I will skip the experimentation part and go straight ahead to the two workshops I had during the last and this week’s Monday.

During Workshop 2 “Experimental and Reflection” I teamed up with my boyfriend to think of an idea for a group project. We came up with “Leaf Humanization” – creating a character based on an imaginary leaf. Then, this idea slightly changed to using actual leaves found outside instead of imaginary ones.

We presented this idea on this week’s Workshop, and the idea that got the majority of votes was the group project with clay. Congratulations ^^

Week 6:

Entry 15: 03/11/2020 11:34 (CET/UTC+1)

Hello! Over the course of the last week, I decided that it’s time to implement some changes in my weekly language learning timetable. Previously, it looked like this:

Monday – Welsh,
Tuesday – Spanish,
Wednesday – Korean,
Thursday – Japanese,
Friday – Russian,
Saturday – Welsh,
Sunday – Spanish.

This allowed me more time for learning Welsh and Spanish since these were the two languages I was afraid to learn the slowest. To my surprise, Spanish turned out to be one of the easiest languages out of the 5 I’m currently learning for me, so I decided to give it less time, and spend more time in the week learning another language I had troubles with – which is Korean. From now on, this is the schedule I will be learning and updating in:

Monday – Welsh,
Tuesday – Korean,
Wednesday – Spanish,
Thursday – Japanese,
Friday – Russian,
Saturday – Welsh,
Sunday – Korean.

Week 7:

Entry 16: 10/11/2020 13:10 (CET/UTC +1)

Entry 17: 11/11/2020 14:35 (CET/UTC +1)

Entry 18: 13/11/2020 15:53 (CET/UTC +1)

Week 8/9/10 + missing entries

Hello! Sorry for not updating for a long time again, as you can probably notice it’s already week 10. I decided to fill in the missing entries (the one tutorial I had with Miranda, the group project, the Proposal Form/ Assignment 1 and the two artists I researched but didn’t make an entry for yet) from all the weeks under one post to make this easier for me, since I don’t remember exactly when some of the things took place. I’m quite sad it came out like this, especially that I tried my best from the beginning to update regularly, so I would not have to worry about missing something or being disorganized, but it didn’t work out and if I can be honest about my feelings, it made me feel like a failure. Perhaps I was putting too much pressure onto myself from the beginning and with each week, my enthusiasm was slowly dying, making me back off. It did teach me about the importance of balance, and I will try my best to implement it in the next project.

Research 1 – Henri Chopin

Henri Chopin was a French avant-garde poet and musician. He often experimented with sound and concrete poetry. He refrained from using advanced, high-quality equipment for his work and instead, sticked to the most basic methods accessible to him.

Here is one of his sound poems:

While sound poems cover one aspect of language (such as the tradition of spreading information and even works of art such as stories, poems, and songs by the word of mouth), his concrete poems are also a very interesting on language in itself. Here are some examples:

Henri Chopin | SUPPORTICO LOPEZ
GALLERY WEEKEND BERLIN #04 / Henri Chopin at Supportico Lopez •Mousse  Magazine

Research 2 – Jenny Holzer

Jenny Holzer is a New York based American artist who is known for working with language, and her art focuses mainly on the power of words. Her most well-known project is Truisms, where she sticked printed out papers full of sentences in black italic to buildings all around Manhattan. She usually works with the LED display of her words.

jenny holzer confronts gun violence with rockefeller center light  projections
Jenny Holzer - Archives of Women Artists, Research and Exhibitions

Tutorial 2:

Unfortunately I couldn’t have a proper tutorial due to bad audio quality on my end, but from what I talked about with Miranda:

  • I will have to go back to Wales next semester
  • I need to get a job as fast as I can, so I will be able to have at least some money for rent
  • (My own reflection) Due to that, I might not be as efficient, because I’m doing all I can to earn enough money
  • I need to fix my audio for future tutorials

Group project:

Although my experience was different than everyone else’s due to having online teaching, I tried my best to get the most out of it. Our group project was a collaborative art experience where all of us molded clay into different shapes, and then passed it to another person, who then destroyed it and re-molded into something new. I tried to do a similar thing with dough, since shops were closed and I couldn’t get clay – I made two shapes (a pieróg and a snail-like twirl) and recorded myself destroying them. Later on I decided to document the experience through doodles of my reflections, and I will post them later.

About Me

I am an aspiring storyteller, and I hope to be able to share my characters with the world one day! My other interests include art, game making, composing music and acting!

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