“Splash The Color” Tutorial

1.  Install the free “Photo Splash” app onto your iPhone, if you don’t already have  it, and then open it.

IMG_12912. Press “Start”.


3. Press “Start New Project”.


4. Choose the “Photo Albums” option. A message will prompt you to enable access to your photos. IMG_1294


5. Choose the photo you wish to edit from your album. It will then appear automatically in black and (white in the app.

6. Use your finger to “paint” (restore)  the color back to the object you wish to “splash” (Zoom in to sections where you need to define outline edges).


7. Press the top right button when complete (looks like a cloud with an arrow pointing up beneath it), in order to share it.

8. Press “Save to Photo Album” (Pick original resolution when prompted).


You will then be able to upload it to flickr and your blog post, as required. 

“Email! Email! Read All About It!” Tutorial


  1. Go to VerticalResponse.com.
  2. Create a free account with your Email address and personal password.
  3. Choose the “Email Campaign” option.
  4. From the “Pick a Template” menu, choose “Purpose” and then “Newsletter/General”.
  5. Click “Select” on the template of your choice.
  6. It’s time to get creative by entering text and images, relevant to your entity, into the blocks of your choice. You may change the background color of the newsletter as well.
  7. Once you have a finished product, hit “Save” (bottom right).
  8. Then hit “Next”.
  9. Enter a subject in the “Subject Line Required” field.
  10. Hit “Save”.
  11. Hit “Save & Exit”.
  12. Under the Contacts tab, create an “Email List” by hitting the “+” button.
  13. Enter a name for your list of DS106 recipients (you do not need to “Allow people to sign up for this list”) and hit “Next”.
  14. From the next screen, I chose to add my contacts manually.
  15. Enter a contact’s Email address and then hit “Save & Add Another”.
  16. Repeat Step #15 until you have entered at least 5 DS106 contacts. Also, add your own Email as a contact, so you will have a copy of the newsletter! *This is important because once you send it, it will be deleted from VerticalResponse and you won’t have a copy to submit on flickr and add to your blog post.
  17. After entering the last contact, hit “Save & Exit”.
  18. Choose the “Messages” tab and click on your Email. Scroll down and hit “Next”.
  19. “Select Your Audience” by checking the box next to your “List” and then click “Send Now”.
  20. Upon receiving the newsletter to your own Email address, either take a screenshot of it or print a hard copy and take a photo of it (this is necessary if your newsletter is too large to screenshot, as mine was!), in order to submit it to flickr and add to your blog post.

Black Widow, Baby!

Since we are forming and expanding our Black Widow Agency this week, I feel that we definitely need a theme song to represent what we do. That is why I chose the  “Your Theme Song” assignment, which states:

If you had the opportunity to create your own theme music, what would it sound like? Get creative and create your own sounds or select an instrumental from Youtube or any other source that represents you well. If you are going the youtube route, remember to use VidtoMp3. Once you have selected your background music, find some sounds/effects to incorporate into it using Audacity or other editing software. You can find free sounds at SoundBible. Once completed, upload to Soundcloud and share it with us.

This assignment is worth 4 points.

Given the name of our agency, what song could represent us better than Iggy Azalea’s and Rita Ora’s “Black Widow”?!  The answer is…NONE! The chorus and second verse fit ideally with the seduction and danger that is BWA. In order to create our theme music,  I edited the song to include only these sections and added some of my own effects. For example, at the beginning, I added ambulance siren sounds and a quick voice-over intro, because we honestly do rescue women. In addition, I added a gun shot and more sirens at the end to contribute a sense of intensity, because if we are nothing else, we are definitely four intense women! All of the audio editing was completed in the program Audacity.

This theme song stands for what we believe in as a whole. It captures the mindset of BWA, as this agency will do whatever it takes to untangle the webs that certain men weave, just like a black widow, baby!

Jewel out.

Newsletter! Newsletter! Read All About It!

This prompt is the first original assignment that I created, and this week was the perfect opportunity to do so. Since we had to complete five stars of web assignments, and there are few that lend themselves to sharing the formation of  Black Widow Agency and how it operates,  I developed one that requires the creation of an email newsletter. I figured this would be a perfect way to go.  However, I wasn’t sure how to submit it to the ds106 Assignment Bank, so I asked another girl in my class, Kendall (I can’t remember her last name), to submit it for me under her name. She was kind enough to oblige and even added a sentence at the end to give me credit. I named the assignment, “Email! Email! Read All About It!” ,and the prompt I developed states:

For this assignment, use the website Vertical Response to create an email newsletter for a fictional agency, company, organization, etc. After you sign up for a free account, Vertical Response allows you to choose from newsletter templates, into which you can insert text and images. You may tell the story of how your entity formed, give background information on the members/employees, and/or provide viewers with current happenings. Once completed, send it to at least 5 people in the DS106 community, so they may share your exciting news! Since there is no shared embedding link for this website, please screenshot or take a photo of the printed newsletter (hard copy), in order to share it on flickr and in your blog post. The idea for this assignment was developed by Julia James.

I valued this assignment at 3 points.

As per my own instructions, I chose a template from the Vertical Response website, for a newsletter, to announce the formation of Black Widow Agency. I decided to use it to give background information about the members of BWA, including myself. I emailed the finished product to the three other members of our agency (Edie, Sylvia, and Margaret), Professor Jim Groom, and Kendall. I even added a link to our Twitter account, on the email, so the recipients may follow us. Since my newsletter was too long to screenshot, I merely printed it out and took a photo of it with my iPhone, in order to post on flickr.

BWA Newsletter

I really hope that many people complete this assignment, because I worked hard to create it. Plus, is there a better way to announce the formation of an entity?!  I think not!

Jewel out. <3

Be Mine…All Four of You, Please?!

When I saw this assignment, a belated Valentine’s Day card that was mysteriously left at Black Widow Agency came to mind. I mean, the wording is just beautiful, so it is worth sharing! The assignment “Noir Valentines” states:

In honor of the convergence of Friday the 13th, St. Valentine’s Day and Noir106, and inspired by The Nitrate Diva, here’s a new assignment to try: Design a Noir Valentine card. Incorporate images and quotes from film noir, the noir-er the better.

This assignment is worth 2 points.

This card is crafted with so much care that Edie, Sylvia, Margaret, and I have just been dying to figure out who it is from! The noir qualities are quite impressive! All that we have come up with, however,  is that it was made on a computer, with the text overlaying a giant ace card that was most likely copied from Google Images. I will even suggest that it was made in Microsoft Word, because I recognize the font and the way it was created. We even went as far as to research the saying that our Secret Admirer put in quotations: “better than a deck with six aces”. However, all that we can surmise from this saying is that the sender is a fan of the movie “Brute Force”, which proves nothing because none of us recognize a connection. For now, I will take it as a nice gesture… at least I hope it is! When you work in the business that my associates and I do, you don’t get too many nice gestures, so you have to be skeptical of everything. The woman’s features on the card keep drawing my attention, though,  because they kind of resemble someone I know, but I can’t quite place the face. For some reason, this really worries me. Something just doesn’t seem right, and BWA will get to the bottom of it eventually. But for the meantime, I will just enjoy the only Valentine’s Day card that I received this year.

Noir Valentine

Jewel out.

Put Away Your Books…Pop Quiz!

What is the best way to really learn something? A quiz, of course! That is why I chose to complete the “Pop Quiz!” assignment. It states:

Using a free online quiz service (I used PollSnack), create a quiz that shows off your knowledge of a particular story. Try to make it interesting enough through the questions you choose and the way you phrase your answers that someone taking the quiz is able to see that there’s a larger narrative informing the questions. Your quiz should have at least three outcomes and at least five questions.

This assignment is worth 2 points.

It will add to the success of Black Widow Agency if prospective clients can differentiate between the four agency members, so I created an online pop quiz to see if participants are able to detect which answers I gave to the five questions included. I think it is the best way for people to really get to know me and how I think. And, even if the answer is incorrect, the quiz reveals biographical information about the chosen agent. There are four possible outcomes to this quiz: Julia James (that’s me!), Edie Waz, Sylvia Stone, and Margaret Pinault.

I created this quiz through Poll Snack. It contains five questions and four possible answers for each question. The dark color red used for the background of the quiz was chosen based on our agency’s theme colors, dark red and black. Check out the quiz here: Which Black Widow Agency members’ answers are Jewel’s?

If you know me well enough, then you will  get the correct outcome. If not, no worries, you will learn more about one of the other Black Widow Agency members. Either way, you are learning about a great agency that will help a lot of desperate women! Best of luck! ;)

Jewel out.

People, Let Me Tell You About My Best Friend!

The “Special Person Montage” is a perfect way to pay tribute to the best guy I have ever known! Unlike most, he is always there for me, regardless! I can definitely see myself waking up to his cute face every day for the rest of my life. I think this may be true love! The prompt states:

For this assignment you are to decide on who is special to you. It could be a relative, sibling, parent, friend, mentor, celebrity, or anyone. Then you are to make a video of images or video clips of them showing all the different things that they do that makes them special to you. Add music, animation, transition, anything to make the video. In your write-up be sure to explain why the person is special to you.

This assignment is worth 5 points.

The hardest thing about my lifestyle is the loneliness! Of course, I am close to my mom, Edie, and Sylvia, but I do not have a special man in my life. I am blessed, however, to have a guy best friend, who is almost like family. He has been there from the very beginning, from when I used to hide under my bed from thunderstorms (hence his name, Storm) until now, when I come home from long days at work and just want to relax. You may wonder why I got to name my best buddy…it is because he is my cat! No matter what time of night or what disguise I’m wearing when I return home, he always recognizes me and shows me unconditional love! I thoroughly enjoyed making this video, since it allows me to share how special Storm is with the world! Please try not to be alarmed while viewing, as I went through many hair phases back in the day, before deciding on my natural red color. I also added some current photos and videos that are just the cutest things you will ever see. I dare you not to smile! :) I created this video through iMovie by adding photos of Storm and me, as well as, some videos of our playtime. The beginning of the video is played to the background music of “Best Friend” by Harry Nilsson, because Storm is my best friend, of course! The rest of it contains a “playful” tune, because Storm is just the definition of playful. Oh, how I love him!

Jewel out.

Movies That Made Me!

My life has been changed over the years by several movies. All of them contain powerful women, just like me. I was not always this way, however. Growing up, my mom was treated like dirt by my dad. Unfortunately, she wasn’t strong enough to get out of the relationship at the beginning. I vowed that I would never be like that, and these movie scenes encourage that. Luckily, my mom gained enough strength to divorce him. As long as I follow the advice in these movies, I will never end up in a situation like that. I pounced at the opportunity to complete the “Movie Scenes that Changed our Lives” assignment. It states:

For this assignment, select scenes from 3-5 movies. These scenes should represent scenes that changed your life or made some sort of dramatic, traumatic, lasting, or emotional impact on you. When you have selected those scenes, create a video that shows the scenes and includes audio/video of you describing what it is about the scene that made a significant impact on you, what you are fond of about the scenes, what scares you, what you remember thinking when you were a child, etc. Feel free to be liberal in your interpretation of the instructions. Keep in mind, however, that the primary point is to recall 3-5 movie scenes that have made a lasting impact on you (whatever the reason for that impact may be.) When you are finished, upload the video to your blog, and, If you are inspired, expand on the reasons why you connect with the specific scenes in your video.

This assignment is worth 5 points.

The movies that I have watched throughout my years and the scenes that have changed my life are from Space Jam, Legally Blonde, Enough, Erin Brockovich, and Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Each of these scenes have strong female lead roles that take a stand and get what they want. I played around with iMovie, once again, and inserted pictures of the movie covers and the scenes themselves. I got the scenes from YouTube and used the 4K Video Downloader to download them and the MPEG Streamclip to cut out any parts that were unnecessary.  While the movie cover for each scene was playing, I recorded a voice-over that includes my explanations.  Nothing is better than a woman who can take charge and dictate their fate. Trust me, it is a great feeling! In this video, I explain exactly why these clips changed my life for the better!

Jewel out.

Oh, The Place I’d Go!

Even if I had all the money in the world, my dream travel destination would not change. And, it is not a common vacation spot either, trust me! However, it has sentimental attachment for me, which is exactly why I would want to visit Cambridge, Massachusetts. During my senior year of high school, I was accepted into Harvard University. Yes, Harvard! However, my mom decided to divorce my dad, because he objectified her for their entire marriage, and there was no longer enough money for me to attend! (don’t get me wrong… I am very happy about the divorce, for my mom’s sake) You see, my dad made my mom sign a prenuptial agreement, and after the divorce, he decided not to pay for Harvard. My mom has always supported my dream of going to Harvard, but my dad never believed  I needed to go to college. He used to say, “Julia, you are so pretty that you will find a rich man to keep you!” The lingering feelings of disappointment led me straight to the “Where Do You Want To Go?” assignment. It states:

Where is somewhere that you have always dreamed of going? I really like travelling, and I often think about where I would go if I had all the money in the world. Do a video montage of images and/or video of the places that you would like to go, and add music that is native to the that area or just something fun.

This assignment is worth 3 points.

I took to Google to search for images of Cambridge, including the skyline, downtown area, Harvard University (of course), and other parts of the beautiful city. Then, I visited YouTube to find a couple Harvard videos. I also added a picture of my Aunt Faye’s house (more like mansion), because I have been meaning to visit her in Cambridge for a long time. Using iMovie, I imported them, and then went on a search for background music. Since Cambridge doesn’t really have a native song, and the Harvard fight song is not very catchy, I searched for musical artists from Massachusetts and came across Bobby Brown.  I chose the song, “Every Little Step” for my video. I love it so much! You better believe that it went right up on my workout playlist! As much as I loved making this video, it makes me a little sad at the same time, because I don’t have enough money to go to Cambridge quite yet. But, who knows? After I take on a few more clients, it may be a dream realized. Check out my fake vacation video in the meantime:

Jewel out.


Guess What?!

This assignment was just to die for! As soon as I spotted the “Name that Book!” prompt, I knew that starting my own book club would come in handy one of these days, and today was that day! It states:

For this assignment, use the app Vine to visually create a book title. Find objects, landmarks, or think of some other creative way to verbally or physically represent a book title. Then record them in quick succession using the app. Then upload the video and have your classmates guess the book title!

This assignment is worth 3 points.

This past week in the “Jewel” Book Club we began a novel about law: my absolute favorite subject! Boy, if I could have gone to Harvard, I would be the best lawyer out there these days. However, what’s the saying? Should’ve, could’ve, would’ve? I guess that’s all I can say because I don’t see it ever happening now, since both of my jobs are so demanding. Anyways, enough about me and on to the book title. I found the perfect three pictures to represent this novel. They include a car (I’m not telling which type), a suited man, and a gavel. I wasn’t sure how to use the whole Vine app since I just set it up. (By the way, follow me! My Vine is Jewel James! :) ) And because I have gotten so familiar with iMovie on my laptop this week, I decided to import the pictures into that, each of them being 2 seconds. And what is a Vine without background music?! (Or so I hear, since I really don’t know!) I found the perfect intense music to go along with this intense novel. Have I given you enough hints yet? Check out the Vine below, and then I’ll give you the answer…maybe!

Any guesses?

Well, since I am such a kind and generous person, I will give you the answer. It’s the “Lincoln Lawyer”, sillies! I had so much fun making this Vine and cannot wait to show it to all my girls next Wednesday when we meet for book club again.

Jewel out.