Transcription by Justin Hodgson
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Beginnings. They are so very crucial to the overall trajectory of a project, even in a recursive, perpetually rebeginning project like this journal. But what do we do with beginnings? What do we do with the curse of this first moment, this inventive moment, this launch? What do we make of these things? How do we embrace this potentiality?
These questions, aside from lingering in my own scholarship, have been taunting me the past few weeks as this first issue has started taking shape. All of us at TheJUMP are seeking a perfect beginning, but was is it to be a perfect beginning? How rare an occurrence that is. And it is, conveniently so, only something to be determined at a future moment, some later date, some other place in time.
Have we had our perfect beginning? Have we found the best possible path? These questions will remain, as there always is a remainder. But what I can tell you is that we have put together a good beginning, a solid beginning, a place from which to grow and grow against. And it is this beginning that you will find in the complexity of projects and pages that make up this first issue.
[Textual Marker: “Sweet Interruption” by David Bistline; Project 1 – TheJUMPv1.1]
Our issue begins with an audio project by David Bistline. This mashup offers a commentary on interruptions, on the interruptor, if you will, and does so by working with the Taylor Swift-Kanye West-Beyonce Knowles VMA 2009 triangle. It uses this incident as a connective moment, and while the surface level of the project is itself interesting, the implications it offers are quite engaging.
[Textual Marker: “NYC, Home of the homeless” by Anna Charles; Project 2 – TheJUMPv1.1]
The second project is a video by Anna Charles that brings issues of perspective to the forefront. Anna offers us a playful dualism in her noticing the unnoticed: the homeless in NYC. By both drawing our attention to them and yet never fully giving them presence, she both asks us to be critically aware of these abjected people, of their exploitation, and yet raises questions of what that awareness might entail.
[Textual Marker: “A Stolen Fairytale” by Ashley Martinez; Project 3 – TheJUMPv1.1]
The third project is a video Public Service Announcement by Ashley Martinez. The project is designed to help stop Child Sexual Abuse and to get us involved with anyone of the organizations listed at the end. But what makes this project unique is that sits somewhere between cartoon/graphic narrative and video. It pulls us in not only via the narrative, but also because we are watching the artist create/sketch us, the child, and our experience, as the story unfolds.
[Textual Marker: “Jason” by Victoria Elliott; Project 4 – TheJUMPv1.1]
Our fourth project, created by Victoria Elliott, is a multimedia research essay done in the Sophie 1.04 ebook platform. The project offers us a glimpse into the “composing” styles of Norwegian comic artist Jason. But more than just commenting on his style, it also mimics his simplicity of design. Working through what Scott McLoud has identified as amplification through simplication or even being an example performance of McLuhan’s cool media, this work attempts to perform the very concepts it is expressing about the artist’s work. It is a multimedia writing of the paradigm.
[Textual Marker: “The Smiling Star: Laybur” by Zi Ye; Project 5 – TheJUMPv1.1]
Our fifth and final project is a digital storytelling video by Zi Ye. What makes this project unique is that it is a creation by an ESL student in an ESL class, and so what is vitally at stake is a coming to terms with the English language. In this frame, the multimedia platform opens a variety of potentials as the student demonstrates varying levels of sophistication in her work that may not be present in her English. But also, this project participates in a genre of story fairly uncommon in the U.S., a genre that Instructor Felice Marcus labels as “the best-friend love-story.” And in the midst of this mix of multimedia and ESL considerations, is a very sincere message from one friend to another as the student author deals with a major transition in her life.
We feel that these five projects, in conjunction with the assortment of documents included with each, as well as our editorial collective’s responses to the projects, create a complexity of engagement that offers readers a variety of interesting options and conversation points. As such, this first issue is about opening conversations, not only for the projects here but for our future. And in that regard we think we’ve come close to our perfect beginning.
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