Avery Mc Grail

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Avery Mc Grail

Skills

Skills

Managing Googledocs

Our staff basically survives off of Googledocs and prior to this year I didn't know that much on how to use it with such a big staff. I learned how to get information across and leave comments to make other people's stories better which makes the editing process easier. 

Photoshop

I realized recently that my comics are missing something. Since the humor page is in black and white there is no way for me to add color so I figured out how to "paint" with different grays. It added deminsion and interest to the comic. They look cleaner and put together. I figured it out on my own without help from the graphic designer.  Also pictures have been easier to edit and place into indesign.

Layout

When I was first introduced to Indesign, I was totally confused. But now that I've learned some tricks and spent some time getting familiar with it, I have no fear in page design.

Staff Improvements

Better Communication with the art staff to editorial board- We have been fixing that in the past issue. Picture suggestions in googledocs is helping, it's just communication if the pictures aren't working out or any other problems. Also I need to know if the editorial board wants any changes or suggestions before I submit my comics.

Getting people to not miss deadline- It's not very pleasant with there's only around five of us working after school and 16 pages to edit. Maybe everyone should come in at least one time outside of class to work during deadline week, perhaps for a grade. Then maybe we'd get the paper done faster freeing up time for dance parties in the work room or discussions about ideas we could try in the paper.

Work time music- Often it's too loud to think or there's multiple songs playing at one time. I think we should thing about making a Talisman playlist with song suggestions from everyone. Or decide on the next song as a group.

Personal Initiative

Being a very shy person it's almost terrifying to be in a room with so many people and be expected to give and receive information smoothly. But I decided that the only way to get things done and done well is to communicate, even if I'm uncomfortable. It hasn't been that hard because everyone has been very friendly.

I had to get more comfortable with asking other staff member's opinion of my comics and stories and taking any of their criticisms. 

When coming up with ideas for comics for the last issue I was in a creative dry spell. So to fix this I turned up the christmas music and just sketched out any little idea I had that was even remotely related to Christmas or the holidays. It sparked some really good ideas for future comics and my "who's nickelback?" comic.  

Earlier in the year I wanted to go to the San Antonio conference, but when it came time to go I realized we just couldn't swing the tickets and the timing wasn't good. Despite that I still sold candy bars and baked my "super delicious" brownies for the bake sales. I figured if I can't go, someone else should go.

Best Work

1.) U.S. versions of British television shows

I think this is one of my best articles because it was fun to write so I hope it was fun to read as well. I tried to make it humorous and not just a list of shows.

2.) Boobiez comic

Even though it was somewhat controversial it was still in good humor for highschool students. It pushed the envelope which is something all Journalists and Cartoonists should try to do. Also I'm proud of the detailing on the boobies contrasting with the simplicity of the guy speaking in it.

3.) Who's Nickleback? comic 

This one is one of my favorite because it pokes fun at something that is relavent in pop culture, which I've been reluctant to do. Thanks to new techniques I've learned in Photoshop it looks clean and visually pleasing, because there's not a lot of boring white space.

Community

Things Avery does besides worry about the paper:

Member of the Hayes Tea Club- We may only sit around and talk about British television and drink tea, but it's one of the reasons I'm glad I go to Hayes. 

Symphonic choir- I'm a second Alto and haven't missed an after school rehearsal at all this year. 

Hayes Thespians- I do the musicals whether I'm a lead or in the choir. 

Babysitter- I work whenever I'm needed. It's a fun and easy gig. 

Goals for 2nd Semester

Being more on top of my Articles and having more creative Ideas

Next semester I plan on being more productive with my time in class and outside of class. I don't like missing deadline or coming to deadline day with a not very good short story. I don't expect everything I write to be gold,  but I would as least like to have a better idea of where my stories will go when I set out to write. Not being so terrified of interviewing and contacting people would help my news stories. Another problem I've had is coming up with story ideas that I would find interesting to research and write as well as appealing to our audience. That will take more creativity. 

My Highlight

The best moment I've had so far on Talisman staff was earlier in the school year, within the first few weeks of school. I stayed after for a work session with Tara, Eric, Claire, and Nick and we listened to music and worked on our pages. I learned how to "Gangnam Style" and became better friends with Eric. We had fun but also got our pages done. I just remember coming home and feeling great because I felt like I belonged there; like I had found some good friends. I feel that way with the staff a lot. Even though personal problems, fights or drifting apart, can make things a bit awkward it's okay, because it doesn't matter. We're still a staff, all problems aside. I consider myself friends with everyone.