A Final Coat of Paint

For my learning project, I decided to teach myself how to paint with acrylics. While I have some experience using watercolors, I wanted to branch out in what I was able to do and try something new.

A Summary of my Learning Project:

Week One: It’s All in the Details

For my first week, I chose what I would do for my project. I used my old acrylic paintings and my recent watercolors to establish a baseline, and decide how and what I wanted to learn.

Week Two: I’ve Got My Head in the Clouds

To start off, I wanted to learn how to paint clouds, as they are often the focal point of a painting. I also chose to do them first, since they would be the most different from watercolor painting, where you simply leave parts of the paper white. I decided to try multiple techniques before moving on to my actual painting in order to get a feel for it.

    • Painting Clouds in Acrylics lesson – A very simple tutorial that creates fluffy, white clouds. However, the use of only white didn’t create the depth that I wanted.

    • How to Paint Clouds using Q Tip and Acrylics – I liked the effect created with the use of Q-tips, and how the addition of other colours changed the depth of the cloud. I hope to use this technique of painting in my future classrooms.

    • Tulip Field Acrylic Painting – The tutorial for the painting I did for the week. It introduced another technique (using sponges) that would be fun to use in the classroom.

Week Three: Go Big or Go Home – New Inspiration and The Grass is Always Greener in Someone Else’s Painting

During this week, I decided to challenge myself even further by starting a painting on a larger canvas (going out of my comfort zone of doing little paintings) and tried to do my own painting (without a specific tutorial). I learned multiple techniques for painting grass – some more detailed and some more impressionistic. I used Hyperlapse to document my progress. I also discovered a couple of apps that have helped me on my learning journey.

    • Acrylics Painting – An app that compiles YouTube painting tutorials and categorizes them. Helpful for beginners.
    •  Sketch a Day – An app that connects artists acorss the globe. Users can post their own tutorials, as well as images of their paintings or drawings. There is a daily challenge that people can participate in.
    •  Why I’m A Fan of the Fan Brush – A website run by artists that has painting tutorials and blog posts. In particular, I focused on using the fan brush in different ways to create grass.
    • Painting Masses, Not Grasses – This is how I ultimately decided to paint my grass for the week. He provides simple instructions with pictures to demonstrate.
    •  Chuck Black – a very in-depth explanation about how to paint very detailed grass. I hoped to use this as inspiration for the grass in my large painting.

Week Four: I’ve Got the Impression that You don’t See what I Sea

Next, I wanted to learn to paint water. However, I decided to take a more impressionistic approach after doing my research. I wanted to explore my old love of impressionist painters and felt that the impressionist way of painting water more accurately captured the movement. I learned how to use Windows Photos Movie Editor as well as Book Creator (link to my book here) to document my learning.

    • I watched some palette-knife painting tutorials to get some inspiration, IMG_20200526_141229789including this Sunrise Painting tutorial. This site gave a little more detail about how to go about using this technique and why you may choose to do so.
    • This tutorial gave me the inspiration for colours and brush-techniques.
    • This site let me explore impressionist techniques a little more in-depth.
    • Painting like Van Gogh Acrylic painting for beginners clive5art – I wanted my painting to look something like this when I was finished. I realized after that I would need thicker paints and a smaller brush in order to properly imitate this look.

Week Five: Winds of Change

This week, I decided to focus more on finishing my large painting. I learned how to paint rocks, fur, and finished the grass I had started to work on. All of these steps helped me to learn how to paint light coming from a certain direction, and how to keep it consistent for multiple objects.

I tried to branch out in my PLN for my project, and ended up finding a few Twitter pages and people to follow (including @angelafineart and @Artsherpa), which has helped me to find new places for tutorials. I also learned how to use Gif-Maker this week, which helped me to show my learning in a new way.

    •  Chuck Black and “Painting Masses, Not Grasses,” – I combined these two techniques in order to achieve a more detailed looking grass, while still maintaining a proper perspective for my painting. I did smaller, more detailed masses, painting each on individually, like in Chuck Black’s tutorial.
    • How to Paint Texture – I used this tutorial when I was painting the bisons’ fur.
    • How to Paint Rocks and Cliffs – this site helped me to paint the rocks so that the colours, lighting, and texture would all work together to create the proper effect.

Week Six: Making Faces

I decided to take a completely different route this week and decided to try my hand at


(A finished image will be updated as soon as possible.)

portrait painting. It was a lot harder than expected, even by doing an abstract portrait, but taught me a lot about colour palettes, details, texture, and shadowing. I learned how to use Milanote to organize my resources, and LunaPic to edit my photo.

My Biggest Takeaways About Online Learning:

  1. I can do it. For years, I have avoided online classes because I didn’t think I would be able to learn as well without in-person instruction. However, I’ve learnt that I can learn online, even without an online course sending me information about what I need to learn. There is so much information available online that I can literally teach myself to do anything I want to. I just have to be willing to take the time to find good resources to teach me, and then put in the effort.
  2. Technology and social media don’t have to be scary. Learning to use them properly, and for things I enjoy and am passionate about (such as teaching and painting), can help me to make connections with people who have similar interests, allowing us to learn from each other.
  3. The importance of self-directed learning. I would never have been able to learn what I did in a classroom, even if I took an art or painting class. Having the freedom to choose what I wanted to learn, when I wanted to learn it, and how I would show what I learned made me more invested in what I was learning. Giving students the same freedom – such as with a Genius Hour Project – will allow them the same joy from learning. Even if I try to incorporate every student’s interests in my lessons, they may not enjoy it as much as a self-directed project, where they have control over all the variables.

While I still prefer in-person classes for instruction for a plethora of reasons (staring at a screen just isn’t the same), I have learned a lot about online instruction and appreciate it a lot more than I used to. There is a lot to be gained from this type of learning, some of which aren’t as possible in a physical classroom environment.

Making Faces

To start this week off, I wasn’t sure what to paint. Nothing was really standing out to me, and the creative part of my brain seemed to be burnt out. My boyfriend then suggested that I try doing a portrait, to change things up a bit from all of the landscapes, and volunteered to be the model for my painting.

I wasn’t completely on board at first, mostly because people are hard to draw, nonetheless paint, and I didn’t think I had the skill necessary to be able to do it properly. But, it also seemed like a fun challenge, one that if I was successful, would be amazing, and if I failed, would be hilarious to see. So, I started doing some research on how to go about painting a person.

I wanted to find a new way of presenting my research, rather than just a bunch of hyperlinks in a blog post, and had stumbled across Milanote last week. It seemed like a creative, yet organized way of organizing sources alongside personal thoughts and comments, so I figured I’d try it out this week. You can see my Milanote here.

It was overall very easy to use, after playing around with some of the options. They have tons of pre-made templates for oodles of different situations, or you can start from scratch (which I did, just to have more freedom in trying out different settings). They use a simple drag and drop function for adding in new texts boxes or columns, and divide up your information based on what it is (if using the column feature). You can change colours, add hyperlinks, embed links or photos, as well as other features I didn’t get around to trying quite yet.

In the future, I will probably use it both personally and professionally – personally for organizing my plans for writing, and professionally in the classroom. Milanote would make it super easy for students to brainstorm and do collaborative research together, without their work interfering with each others (as is sometimes the problem with Google Docs).

In the Milanote, I mentioned using LunaPic as my photo-editor. I had previously only used PicMonkey, and had planned on doing so again. However, I discovered that they no longer have any free options, which turned out to be kismet. LunaPic was completely free, for all of their options (at least as far as I could tell), and they had dozens of pre-made settings that mimic famous painters or styles, allowing me to come up with a much more polished piece than I would have been able to with PicMonkey. I loved how diverse each of the options were, and that you could adjust how heavily the effects were applied (make sure you hit adjust after doing so if you want to save the image with the lowered effect – otherwise it will download with it at 100%).

I actually really like the “floating” effect (above), but didn’t find it till after doing the painting, when I was doing the demonstration for this post. We decided to use the below image for my starting point (using the LunaPic Dreaming effect):


In order to transfer the image to my canvas (I wasn’t quite comfortable trying to free-hand it), I scribbled over the back of a printed out version with a pencil, then traced the lines while the scribbled portion was over the canvas, allowing me to transfer a rough outline.

Finally, I decided to use GIF Maker (like in my last post) again to show the process. I feel that it is a succinct, yet polished way of compiling images into a slideshow.

result (1)

I wasn’t quite able to finish the painting in time for this week’s post, despite spending more time on it than each of my previous paintings (other than the large one). I found it was a lot more complicated and time consuming to paint a portrait than a landscape – there is almost no room for error, and every little detail matters, or else the entire appearance is off. I think part of what made it even harder were the colours. Where I could have had a few varying tones of the same colour in a regular portrait, I had to constantly be mixing different shades and colours, then apply them just so or risk ruining the effect. In addition, I found that I could only do hour-long sittings, as the number and brightness of the colours got confusing if I looked at them for too long, making me have to take more frequent breaks.

I also noticed that GIF Maker seemed to have squashed the photos, and couldn’t get it to undo that effect, so here’s a photo of what I was able to accomplish thus far:


While I enjoyed the different colour palette and the new challenge, I have a lot more to learn before I feel comfortable doing something similar again.

Once I finish the painting, I’ll update this post with the finished image.

As always, if you have any tips, tricks, questions or otherwise, feel free to do so in the comments! I look forward to hearing from all of you.

Winds of Change

I spent the majority of this week working on finishing my painting of the buffalo rock, which I decided to start a few weeks ago. I decided I wanted to focus my efforts on this painting, rather than starting a new one, as there were several different things I had to learn to move forward on this one. I had said in this post that I would make my grass in this painting more like Chuck Black’s, however, when I tried to go this detailed in a portion of my painting, it just didn’t look quite right. To fix this, I decided to go in between his example and “painting masses, not grasses,” and instead painted lots of img_20200605_103819338individual small masses. I used small, short strokes further in the back, then made them longer the closer they got to the foreground. I made them slant slightly to the right to indicate the wind that is blowing in the storm, and then went back over with a super tiny brush to add in the flowers and prairie sage. I think this achieved the overall look I was going for, though it was very time-consuming. I ended up using a similar technique for painting the closer bison in order to get the texture of his fur, following this explanation:

“Painting texture is really about mark-making. The illusion of texture is created through a frequent alternation between light and dark marks.”

I loved how many different ways he described to paint different textures, and the idea of using different tools, such as styrofoam and aluminum foil rather than only brushes. It would be fun to explore some of these techniques in the coming weeks.

I also used this site to help me paint the rocks. I wanted the majority of the rocks to fade into the landscape so that the buffalo rub rock would be the focus. I’m very pleased with how they turned out, but I would make one or two of them stand out a little more if I were to do it again. I could do this by making their colours more stand-outish, by making their shape more angular and eye-drawing, by changing their size, or all of the above. However, I think that they worked for the overall feel of the painting.

Trying to branch out in where I get my sources, I found some people on Twitter who post painting tutorials regularly and even do live demonstrations. I shouldn’t have been surprised after seeing how large the Twitter education community is, but I still was when I saw how big the art, specifically painting community was! There are a lot of useful resources and contacts to make if you want to join that community. I started following @angelafineart and @Artsherpa though, if you’re looking for a place to get started.

I wanted to find another new way to document my learning this week, and found the idea of making a gif using  Gif-Maker on Annissa’s blog. It was super simple to use. All I had to do was select the files I wanted, make any changes (such as frame duration, adding text, etc.), hit “create GIF,” and then download. It would be a fun, simple way for students to document their progress on larger projects.


It’s also great because you don’t have to upload it to YouTube before you can post it in your blog, which makes things a lot easier. Here’s my progress for this week:


As you can see, I used initial paper drawings of the buffalo before adding them in to my painting. This was to make sure that their placing and size worked, and allowed me to make some changes prior to painting them, making it much easier to fix.

As always, if you have any questions, tips, or suggestions, feel free to let me know in the comments. I hope to hear from you!

I’ve Got the Impression that You don’t See what I Sea

Going into this week, I was planning on simply doing a video to document my learning, trying out the Windows Photos Movie Editor, and using more editing techniques (rather than just stringing my clips together and leaving them as-is. However, I didn’t find it particularly exciting and felt that I should push myself a little further. Scrolling through one of the lists provided, Book Creator really stood out to me, and I’m so glad I tried it out! It’s definitely something I’m going to use in my future classroom (and they even provide examples of how to do so, and how to use it for assessment as well).

I like that they provide a variety of simple templates and options for the size of your book (there’s even the option to make comic books). It was really simple to navigate, add in text, and make an overall nice, finished piece. My only wish was that they provided more options for clipart to help make your pages more unique and to help make it more engaging for students.

I really enjoyed the added features of being able to hyperlink, add in videos (without having to first post them to YouTube), photos, and voice recordings. They also have a built-in read-aloud feature, making it accessible to students with visual differences. However, you can make it even more personal by adding in recordings of you reading each page (which I did on the first page of my book), helping students feel more like they are right there with you even when they are distance learning. Students could also use this feature to provide extra information about a topic, in addition to what they have typed. It has a lot more options than simply having students create a physical report of their learning, and they can work on it over the course of the year, even merging multiple books into a summary of their learning.

To get started, I initially tried playing around on my own for a while, before using this guide to help me figure out some of the features. This is what I was able to accomplish for my first book – I hope you enjoy! So far the link has worked for everyone, but if you’re having trouble viewing it, let me know in the comments!

Here’s a quick walk-through of how to use it:

I forgot to demonstrate a couple of things in the video, but they’re super simple. If you want to add a hyperlink, simply highlight the words you want included in the link, hit the little chain icon and paste in the URL (just like on WordPress). Also, if you want to add your bitmoji into the books to make it a little more fun or personal (something students will likely love to do), simply select which bitmoji you would like (using the chrome extension, if on a laptop) and drag and drop it into the book (it will not allow you to copy and paste images from outside of the application). After that, you can resize and move it around just like an image.

Here are some more resources for how to implement it in the classroom:

If you have any questions, comments, tips, ideas for how to use Book Creator in the classroom, or other online book-making tools (or other types of tools – I always want to expand my repertoire!) that you would like to share, feel free to do so in the comments! I would love to hear from you.

The Grass is Always Greener in Someone Else’s Painting

This week, I wanted to learn to paint grass. I felt like it was a natural progression from painting clouds, as together, they can create a full painting. However, once I started looking for tutorials, I was overwhelmed with how many different ways there was to do it, and with each producing a very unique look. Some were very detailed, others worked to create more of an impression of grass, and still others were somewhere in-between.

After becoming thoroughly unsure of what to do, I decided to look for apps rather than videos or blogs, at least for a way to get started.

The first app I found seemed to pull various painting tutorials from YouTube, sorting them into categories, while also minimizing the overall amount of content you are exposed to. I found this very helpful to get started, and it would be a great app for beginner painters who don’t know where to start. My only complaints are that some of the videos weren’t the best quality, and the same filtered exposure that helped at first also limited how many styles I could try. Overall, if you’re just looking for a few things to try out, but are overwhelmed with the vast amount of content online, this app would be a good place to start.

The second app I found, “Sketch a Day,” is by far my favorite. Its tutorials are not just pulled straight from YouTube, but are created by users of the app all over the world, screenshot_20200522-112147allowing you to be exposed to multiple techniques and styles, while also finding something different from what a simple search in YouTube would turn up. They also have daily challenges, which are usually a simple word. You then paint, draw, or otherwise create your impression of the word and can upload a photo to share with the rest of the community. If you’re struggling to decide what to do but are in a creative mood, this helps a lot, and makes you think in a different way. I’m still exploring all the features, but am loving it so far.

Outside of these apps, I still used a few other sources as well. To start, I tried using a fan brush, following this tutorial. I chose the fan brush first, as it is what my dad generally uses in his paintings to depict grasses. I found it was very difficult to get the right strokes though, and more often than not, the paint would simply go on in a straight green mass, no matter what I did. The jabbing upwards motion and using the tips to create short, stubbly looking grasses worked a little better, but still wasn’t my favorite. Maybe I just need more practice, but I’m not completely sold on this technique.

Next, I tried the idea of “painting masses, not grasses,” and while it didn’t work great on img_20200522_112340149the paper, it did work on my canvas when I decided to use this technique again (I’m thinking this might be the same issue with the other ones as well). I liked how loose it made the painting look, and how it captured more of the feeling (such as the wind blowing through it, how the sun catches different parts of it, etc.), so I figured I would try again on my painting for the week.

I also decided to do my own painting this week, as I enjoy painting places I’ve been, want to go, or otherwise feel a connection to. I feel I can do them more justice (again, in being able to capture the feeling of the place, not just how it looked), making them more than some paint splattered on a canvas. After much searching though, I hadn’t found anything that particularly struck me. So I started thinking broader, and decided on the grain elevators in Three Hills Alberta. My dad spent a large portion of his childhood here, and would run past these bins everyday (plus he loves old grain elevators, so I can give it to him!). Even though I’ve never personally been here, I feel a greater connection to it than to my last painting.

I again used the sponge technique for the clouds, as it let me make a very whispy look in the background, then paint some heavier clouds in front. I kept my colour pallet a lot more limited than last time, using only ultramarine blue, burnt sienna, yellow ochre, and titanium white, mixing them to get the other colours I needed. I’m still not overly thrilled with my grass, but I’ve started to get a feel for it.

As for my larger painting that I blogged about a couple days ago, I’m still working to finish the grass and hills. I took it as far as I could without yet adding in the bison, as I realized partway through that I would need to have them finished before I can finish the grass (their shadows will change the colours of the grass behind them, and some grass will need to be painted over their hooves and sides where they are laying down).

I tried again to do a hyperlapse of me painting, and was planning to do it in several, shorter takes. However, I started the second segment and got so involved in actually painting that I forgot about the video completely, making me lose it once again. For next week, I just discovered that you are able to upload videos you took on your phone, so I will try that instead. It also went sideways for some strange reason, and would not let me rotate it. I did learn how to add music to a video in the YouTube editor, so that should make my future videos more enjoying!

Video aside, I think I’m going to try to make the grass a little more detailed than in my grain elevator painting. I really like how Chuck Black’s grass looked and would like to mimic his technique in this painting. I won’t be able to go quite as detailed, as my landscape is taken from farther away, but I can definitely go more detailed in some sections.

But I digress. Here’s what I was able to accomplish this week on my project:

If you have any questions, tips, or anything else, feel free to ask in the comments!

Go Big or Go Home – New Inspiration

I know I’m updating early, but I decided to make a little change to my learning project, so I thought I should update before posting my actual blog for this week. I guess you get a bonus this week!

To start this week off, I was trying to think of a way to tie everything that I’ll learn together into a sort of big final project. Finally, I decided to face more of my fears, as this class seems to make me do things I wouldn’t otherwise try. This time, I’m challenging myself to go bigger.

What do I mean, you ask?

Well, the majority of my watercolor paintings are on post-card sized paper. I don’t particularly like working on larger “canvases” so to speak, as there is too much white space and I tend to get overwhelmed, or feel I need to add an unhealthy amount of detail to justify making it that big. My mistakes usually show up way more as well, further adding to my dislike of large spaces. Even working on the 8×10 canvas for last week’s painting was a major stretch, and I was only comfortable with it as I was following someone else’s example.

Thus, my challenge to go bigger. Throughout the rest of the course, I’m going to work on a much larger canvas (16×20), incorporating the new skill I learned each week (such as clouds or grass). I feel like breaking it up into smaller chunks will make it less overwhelming, while also giving me a chance to really focus on each individual part of the larger work.


Further challenging myself, I decided to make it an all-original piece of work. Rather than working from any singular photo or tutorial, I am going to use a photo I took over the summer of a buffalo rub-rock (above) as my basis for the scene, but then add in img_20200520_195003139elements (such as bison) and change the overall feel by changing the lighting and the weather (making it more stormy). To do this, I tried doing thumbnail sketches for the first time, to help me get a feel for the layout of the painting. I followed this example, and even tried doing an underpainting in burnt sienna (luckily a color I already love using in my paintings) to add more depth to the final piece – something I had never heard of doing before. My thumbnails weren’t nearly as detailed as theirs, but they allowed me to get a feel for the lighting, placement, and sizing of the different components, ultimately saving me from making some major errors in my actual painting. I also did a very quick small painting (again, about the size of a post-card) to get a feel for some of the colours I wanted to use.

I then tried using Hyperlapse to create a timelapse of me painting. I tried to do it in two, smaller sessions, however, my one of me actually painting the clouds was apparently too long (there is a max of 5 minutes for the time-lapsed version), and I lost it. Oh well, live and learn. It was still a really cool and simple app to use, I’ll just have to be more aware of my timing in the future!

And now, here’s what I was able to accomplish so far:


I’m overall very pleased with how it’s turning out so far. It was actually really fun to be able to paint clouds on a larger scale and using different colours to achieve the sunset-storm look. I’m so excited to keep going!

I’ve Got My Head in the Clouds

For my first week, I decided to teach myself how to paint clouds. It was a lot harder than I was expecting, and there were so many different techniques to choose from! And while I did find some I liked more or was able to do better than the others, I think all of them will be valuable in different situations, depending on the effect I am trying to achieve. Below are a few examples of what I tried this week:

I started with a simple tutorial that I found on YouTube that just used white in varying thicknesses (clouds on the top right), blending (also see: https://drawpaintacademy.com/blending/) it in to the background. It was probably the technique that gave me the fewest difficulties, however the clouds lacked some of the depth I was wanting and would only really work for when I’m trying to paint a perfect, sunny day.

Next, I found a tutorial for how to paint clouds using Q-tips (bottom right photo). I was skeptical at first. How could Q-tips work for giving the right look? But I was pleasantly surprised with the results, and had a lot of fun doing it. The grouping of the Q-tips creates a more random look, which makes the clouds look more natural and not so stiff and uniform. I was able to blend in some gray tones (created through a mix of ultramarine blue, burnt sienna, and yellow ocher) which really helped to give the cloud some depth. My only complaint for this method is how much paint it uses, and how thick the final product is (you can sort of see in the photo how bumpy the paint is, even after drying). If I can fix this, and find a way to create some larger, fluffy-looking parts, I may use this technique again in the future.

Finally, I found an awesome tutorial for multiple types of clouds on Createful Art (left two photos). I think I’ll probably use these techniques a lot in the future, as they are effective, simple to execute, and don’t use large amounts of paint. I would like to practice them more before trying to do a large-scale painting though!

For my larger project this week, I decided to try some more Q-tip art, as I really enjoyed doing it and would like to be able to do it with my future students. The tutorial for the painting I chose used a different technique for the clouds than any I had found before: they used a sponge to lay down the paint. I really like how light and fluffy it made the clouds! However, since they only used white paint again, they clouds are again lacking in depth. I’m hoping to combine this technique with some of the blending ones I learned earlier for future paintings.

*I tried to add more links to explanations of painting terms this week, as there was some confusion about my post last week. I hope this helps! If there is any more confusion or if you have other questions, feel free to ask in the comments!*

It’s All in the Details

For my learning project, I’ve decided to teach myself to paint, specifically with acrylics. I have some experience working with watercolors, however I have always wanted to expand my knowledge so that I would be able to capture images and ideas in different ways.

The last time I attempted to paint with acrylics, I was probably around twelve years old. My dad is an artist, so I grew up watching him paint and he made it look so effortless. Needless to say, I had my bar set pretty high going in. It resulted in these…questionable masterpieces:

Several years later, I got over my trauma and joined the art club in my first year of high school. While I didn’t remain in the club long, I stayed long enough to participate in both drawing and watercolor classes, which reignited my love of creating art. Since then, I have tried to improve my watercolor skills with the help of YouTube videos and through trial and error. While I’m still far from where I would like to one day be, I think I have come a long way.

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I think what made acrylics so difficult for me was the precision required. With watercolors, you let the colors flow, then build off of what they create. It is generally less precise, and creates more of an impression, capturing more of the feeling of what you are attempting to depict. Additionally, you leave white spaces to create highlights and various other effects, or layer on pigment heavier to create the darker shades. You generally don’t have to mix the varying shades that you need of one color, because the water will do that for you. Different colors will blend themselves together as you let the water and pigment do their thing.

With acrylics, you must capture every detail, filling every space on your canvas, paper, or board. There is significantly less room for error, and even the impressionist-style paintings have to be extremely precise or risk looking ill-painted.

However, this precision also opens up the opportunity for a much wider-variety of painting styles. Throughout this course, as I teach myself to paint, I will also be experimenting with different techniques to discover my own, personal style. Each week, through the use of online videos, blogs, websites, and whatever other resources I am able to discover, I will try multiple different styles and ways of painting the same thing (such as clouds, water, trees, grass, flowers and light), before creating a larger painting, incorporating the method I like the most or that best suits the look I am trying to achieve. These methods may vary from simply being in a different style, to using different colors or different types of brushes, or to using a completely different tool or medium to paint. It will be exciting to see how many different ways people have come up with to do the same thing!

To further build my skills and make my project more accessible to others, I will try to capture my learning in different ways throughout the semester, such as through pictures, time-lapses, and short videos.