Ron Leunissen

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Shakespeare week at DS106



In the last week we had several Daily Create assignments at DS106 connected to the celebration of Shakespeare’s work written over 400 years ago, thanks to Sandy Jensen Brown and her Shakespeare loving partner, Peter.

I must admit, though I know Shakespeare as a writer and know the ever green quote “To be or not to be”, I’ve never read anything by Shakespeare. For each of the assignments I googled the quote and read the translation to modern English and the context in which the phrase was put.
I use the information thus found to think of my contribution to each of the daily create assignments.

The first assignment was #tdc1562 “Alas, poor Yorick, for I knew him well…”. Hamlet says this in a graveyard as he looks at the skull of Yorick, a court jester he had known as a child, and grieves for him (source).
Some time ago I made several images of what I then called “skull man”, a collage of a cow’s skull and the body of a male mannequin. I re-used that and put it on top of an image of a graveyard. (app used: Bazaart)

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Hamlet says this in a graveyard as he looks at the skull of Yorick, and grieves for him.


The second assignment was #tdc1563 “Oh, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!”
In modern English this would come down to “wow, she’s pretty!”
Again I could re-use an image I’d made earlier while experimenting with the DreamScope app on my iPhone.

To make this image it took several steps:
1 altered the original photo found on the internet with Aerograph app;
2 put a different background to the new image in Bazaart app;
3 had the image altered by DreamScope
4 put the text on the final image in Bazaart app.
(apps used: Aerograph, Bazaart, Dreamscope)

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Several apps on iPhone have been used to create this image


The third assignment read #tdc1564 “If music be the food of love, play on…”. Here Orsino is asking for more music because he is frustrated in his courtship of Countess Olivia. He muses that an excess of music might cure his obsession with love, in the way that eating too much removes one’s appetite for food (source).

For this assignment I used a song written by Kevin Hodgson during last year’s Digital Writing Month which we collaboratively sang together with Sarah Honeychurch and Maha Abdelmoneim.
To do this we used SoundTrap, an awesome online music editor which makes it possible to work asynchronously on a song with several people. I wrote more about our little project in this post. The result, our song, can be heard here on SoundCloud.
(apps used: Audacity, SoundTrap, SoundCloud)

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I submitted as my daily create my post on a musical project together with Kevin, Sarah and Maha.


This next assignment read #tdc1565 “I call it Bottom’s Dream because it hath no bottom.” This quote comes from A Midsummer’s Night Dream. I used the Wikipedia page on Nick Bottom to understand what this quote was about. Apparently Nick’s head has magically been changed into the head of a donkey.
I used two images, one of a donkey and one of a scene in Hamlet (the one with the skull) in Bazaart app to make a collage. Then I imported that collage into ProCreate drawing app on my iPad and traced the outlines with with gel pen on a black background.
(apps used: Bazaart, ProCreate)

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A combination of Hamlet and A Midsummer’s Night Dream

I later re-did the Bazaart image and posted that on the Bazaart community and in my Flickr account.

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Bazaart collage, Hamlet in A Midsummer’s Night Dream as part of #DS106 and #Shakespeare400

Next was assignment #tdc1566 “Ill met by moonlight, Proud Titania!”
Oberon apparently wants to get back to his wife Titania after dogging on her with his mistress. Well this Titania isn’t to be taken for granted! Talk to the hand, Oberon!

To make this, I again used a combination of apps on my iPad: Bazaart to make the collage and ProCreate to trace the outlines of the images.
(apps used: Bazaart, ProCreate)


The last Shakespeare linked assignment #tdc1567 wasn’t a quote from a play but a question: What happened to the head of Shakespeare?
Recent research showed that the head of the writer is missing from what we suspect to be his grave.

In all big world mysteries there’s always the same group that seems to be involved: The Illuminati. Probably they’ll hold the skull for ceremonial reasons.
(app used: Bazaart)

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Shakespeare’s skull is missing from his grave. Probably the mysterious Illuminati has got it and use it in their rituals.


This week of DS106 was fun to do. It adds to the experience when a couple of assignments are linked to a central theme.
I also liked that the assignments triggered me to search for information on the Shakespeare quotes and thus learn about his plays.


1 Comment

  1. Ron,
    What a great summary and write up! It’s fun for me to learn about your process and see the daily results. I asked my husband Peter to show them to Shakespeare (since he seems to be in constant contact), and Bill said, “Right on, Ron!”

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