With school coming back into session, I’m reminded that it’s time to get back into the grind of my thesis.
The tail-end of the summer and these first few weeks of school have brought my mind back to focusing on my work, and also questioning some of the ideas I’ve had about the final form my project will take.
A quick TL;DR of my life: my band released an album, I played a lobster festival in Chicago, and I’ve been accepted as an Andrew Carnegie Society Scholar, which I hope will fund a trip to SXSW to meet industry executives and leaders in March.
All of these experiences have led me to question what the final form of my thesis project will take.
Initially, I wanted my project to be presented as a film, more specifically a documentary. This film would be 30-45 minutes, and more or less be a traditional linear narrative that puts forth my argument about the Pittsburgh music scene.
However, I find myself now questioning myself. After finishing my research this past summer and limiting my scope, I now worry about almost being too argumentative and having tunnel vision with my film.
My music experiences and interactions with individuals have taught me that, if anything, the developments in the music scene are inextricably tied to huge other cultural factors locally, nationally and regionally. It’s no surprise that with huge amounts of money coming in from the tech boom and with younger, more affluent people moving into the city there has been a shift in the live music scene.
Also, I’m quickly realizing that the notion of making a large film has a learning curve, and even with a team to help, could lead to us getting mired in production aspects rather than focusing on content.
As a result, I’ve been debating using an online, interactive method of conveying my narrative as opposed to a traditional film.
This narrative would be less “linear” and act more as a timeline that displays information with firsthand videos and documents accessed by the reader. As a result, the reader can move around more and create their own personalized experience in learning about changes in the music scene. Also, as the music scene continues to develop and change, more people could post and add to this narrative.
The one weakness of this change would be that my ability to convey an argument would be weakened. My ability to control how the narrative functions and is followed is hindered by the increased interactivity and responsibility of the user/reader.
Ultimately, I think that this hurdle of deciding the final form of my project is the next challenge for me to tackle (and fast!)