Mary Stewart Educator: Digital Foundations Syllabus: Assignment 4: Juxtaposition and Association

Create meaning through juxtaposition—of images, texts, and sound.

Example A: Wordplay

Problem: Working in teams of 2 or 3, choose one word for temporal visualization. Explore the definitions, emotions and implications of your word. Using stopmotion and video editing, create the most compelling movie possible, up to 4 minutes in length. Sample subject words: bridge, barrier, mind, game, blue, karate. silence. Sample thematic words: identity, loss, community 


  • To build basic technical, compositional and conceptual skills
  • To experiment with at least two idea generation strategies
  • Explore storyboarding as a means of idea development
  • To explore the basics of associative editing

1: IMovie basics. Using “stock footage” provided, master IMovie basic tools.

2: IMovie basics. Expand first draft, using sound. Complete at least 2 versions that are substantially different, based on the effects of sound and pacing.

3: Wordplay problem presentation, followed by mind map and emotion expansion brainstorming sessions. Stopmotion basics presented.

4. Choose your word, begin visual and verbal research, rough out an idea, play with Stopmotion. (Each team will need 2 hours at a Stopmotion station)

5. Discuss results in team meetings; plan and complete final shooting.

6: Edit in IMovie; refine audio.

7: Final draft due. Class critique followed by written self-assessment.

For self-assessment, answer the following questions:

  • What is the most compelling aspect of your final piece? What makes it compelling?
  • What is the least compelling? What is wrong with it, and how can it be changed?
  • Is there anything you would like to add, subtract, and expand in your movie?
  • What technical, compositional and conceptual skills do you most need to acquire?
  • How do you plan to acquire these skills?

Example B: Soundstage

: Maximum movie length is 3 minutes. Half of the time the screen will be blank: no image. How can sound create a bridge between periods of image and no image? what else can sound do? Work will be done in teams of two or three.


  • To explore types and effects of sound
  • To create compelling relationships between visual and audio
  • To be relentlessly creative, witty. I am boxing you in: push the limitations set!

Session 1: Lecture/demo on sound; show examples of effective uses. HW: Develop ideas.

Session 2: Video basics, including hands-on experiments. HW: Shoot videos.

Session 3: Edit and insert audio, with each team-member creating a different “take” on the idea.

HW: Complete first draft.

Session 4: Critique of work in progress. HW: Complete final draft.

Final Capstone: Digital Portfolio

Problem: In preparation for an “Early Decision” BFA review, create a digital portfolio consisting of 15-18 static images (from 2D Foundations, Drawing, 3D, your own studio work, etc.) and 3 moving images from this class, plus a one-page resume and a one-page artist’s statement

Mary Stewart email address:

Sample Assignments for Digital Foundations

Assignment 1:The Parts and The Puzzle
Assignment 2: Color and Communication
Assignment 3: Linear Narrative
Assignment 4: Juxtaposition and Association

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