Class launches digital entertainment site

The Virginia Ball Center for Creative Inquiry and idream launched their interactive Web site, www.someoneswatching.com, Monday in the Art and Journalism Building.

The idream team, made up of 16 students from seven different majors, has been filming, editing and designing for the past five months to create Ball State's first digital entertainment Web site.

"We have developed a stage for the new media creation that goes on every day on this campus," said acting professor and idream adviser Rodger Smith.

"idream is Ball State's niche for digital entertainment and media," said team member Anne Taylor, an entrepreneurship major.

During the presentation, the group described the creation of the Web site, showed clips from videos and introduced the three main areas of the site, "Laundromat," "Guy," and "Between Women."

According to designers Jason Howey and Andy Bell, Laundromat is a collection of short independent films. Viewers can navigate through the virtual "laundromat" and click on objects to see a series of movies.

"Eventually, we would like to add more movies," Howey said. "We would like for every object you see to have a story behind it."

"Guy's Place" is also interactive. Site visitors can play games and watch short cartoons.

"Guy's Place is the hodge podge and eye candy of this Web site," said designer Mark Miller. "It is sole entertainment. It's fun, upbeat and positive."

The third area on the site, "Between Women," was designed by Yolanda Meidel. This section allows the viewer to click on characters in the movie to navigate to other videos.

According to Kathryn Gilbert, a theater and telecommunications major, the site took the group a total of 15,360 hours of work throughout the semester.

"This is incredible because we haven't had an actual assignment since the second week of classes," Gilbert said.

Tobe Depew agreed.

"We did everything on our own free will," he said. "Rodger checked in with us every so often to help us stay on track. He was like the coach."

Taylor said the team members have gained so much experience through their work.

"We came with existing skills," she said. "We expanded on what we had."

Taylor related a story about team member Lucy Bansley, who came into the group with an acting background. Through idream, Bansley has gained experience directing, writing scripts and helping with publicity stunts.

Because of these experiences, the idream group would like to see the project continue.

"We want it to be an official university organization," said Jennie Keller. She said in the future they would like to have a student recruiter who searches for other students needing experience in the various aspects of the project, including editing, directing and acting.

For now, idream is interested in gathering feedback and support for its existing Web site.

More information, including documentaries, on the idream project can be found at www.bsu.edu/vbc.


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