And That’s a Wrap!

Week two of our case, The Disappearance of Meowdred Pierce, is complete and resolved!  After finding a lot of the evidence last week but not too many answers, we were bound and determined to finish up the case this week and find NoirCat! This determination led us to success. I tracked a lot of this success in my personal updates this week on Wednesday and earlier today, Sunday. I was also a very busy tweeter this week, as I had to make sure that the followers of our case were kept abreast with daily updates. Check out some of my tweets from this week below:

The anonymous email that you can see above was sent to us early on in the week (Monday, April 13), but we were unable to recover it, after it disappeared thirty seconds post receiving it. I did some makeshift computer hacking and have been working recovering the email since Monday. I was finally able to find the email, but was unable to track the email account. It has essentially gone into nonexistence. I desperately wanted to find the sender, because BWA would really like to give thanks for the helpful and very accurate tip! If the sender is reading this now, THANKS!

Anonymous Tip

As you can see from one of our tweets, we got the team together on Thursday, so we could assess the case and finalize our plan of attack, if you will. As of that point, we had not approached NoirCat, so we had no clue that she faked her own disappearance. We had planned for the worst case scenario: that we would come across a disgruntled and angry catnapper. However, it ended up that all we faced was a melancholy and dejected cat. I interviewed NoirCat, thinking that she was going to open up about her catnapper. As a surprise to me and my team, she confessed to faking it, in order to escape the degradation that she faced from the DS106 community. I relayed the information that I received from NoirCat to the agency and made a video with captions of her responses, which a feline translator fed me during the interview.

With this last detail, I was able to finalize the suspect board, which I have been working on throughout this entire case. Before viewing the finalized board, however, please check out the first update of this week. It includes Daphne’s interview claims, NoirCat’s tag and collar and the abandoned building that they led to, and the anonymous tip that led to the “Cat’s Closet” with a photo of NoirCat leaving out of the kitty door. Enjoy:

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The next and final update includes all of the evidence that leads directly back to NoirCat as the victim and catnapper in this case! It includes the series of soft paws leading to the house that NoirCat was found in, her interview that I conducted, and the confessions that she made in that interview. Check it out:

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As stated previously, NoirCat has been devastated by her treatment from the DS106 community and does not desire to return. After closing the case of “The Disappearance of Meowdred Pierce”, we moved onto Case #002, “The Transfer of NoirCat”. We could not let her face such objectification again! Therefore, we came up with a plan to send her to Japan with a new identity. In order for this to happen, however, we first had to obtain a “PussPort” for her travel. I assumed this responsibility and designed the perfect “PussPort”. I  changed NoirCat’s appearance by dying her hair partially white and giving her a Japanese disguise. NoirCat will now forever be known as Ivanna Befree. Check it out below:

PussPort cover Pussport


I perused through some work completed by my fellow ds106’ers and was very impressed with their progress on each of their cases. I found some really tell-all evidence. I commented on Dalina’s post,  Sebastian’s post, Brenda’s post, Lawrence’s post, Edie’s post, John’s post, Jota’s post, Jeffrey’s post, Victoire’s post, and Brian’s post.

I am so satisfied with the results of this case, as we could not have helped a smarter or more beautiful woman than Ivanna Befree. She is so happy now and that makes me happy. Although it is not my usual type of case, it is definitely one that will leave a lasting impression on me. :)

Jewel out.

The Disappearance of Meowdred Pierce: Week One

This week was definitely unorthodox compared to those in the past. Rather than just creating art in different mediums, we were assigned a case to solve. My agency will be working on: “The Disappearance of Meowdred Pierce”.          Maggie Black filed a missing cat report with Black Widow Agency, as NoirCat is nowhere to be found! We began the week by using the information that Black and Groom provided. Since the only location we had to go on was Groom’s place, (as he accused his dog, Daphne, of chewing on part of a ransom note) we began there. It turns out that we did find parts of the ransom note.

"We have your cat. If you every want 2 see ur cat again, meet @ the Pie..."
“We have your cat. If you ever want 2 see ur cat again, meet @ the Pie…”

Unfortunately, Daphne ate the end of it, so we were unable to make out where the catnappers want to meet. We continued our search of Groom’s location. While there, I personally conducted an interview with Daphne, thanks to help from a canine translator. The translator fed me the dog’s answers to my questions through an ear bud. Daphne did not have much to say on the subject, which is a bit odd considering her “best friend” supposedly disappeared. She did mention that NoirCat is not fond of the ds106 community that Maggie Black is a part of. It’s not much to go on, but we will put it all together eventually.

Julia: Well, hello Daphne. I’m Julia James.

Daphne: *Growls

Julia: I want to ask you a few questions about NoirCat. So, I’ll start by saying, I know you’re a dog and she’s a cat, and things can get pretty heated there. But I’m going to try to keep an open mind. So I’m going to ask you, once for the record, what’s your relationship with NoirCat?

Daphne: We are friends! Actually, we are best friends!

Julia: Oh friends, huh? I’m not sure I buy it! But anyway, why did we find the ransom note at your house?

Daphne: Because I ate it! I was hungry, okay?!

Julia: Okay then? Well, I guess my next question is…what do you know about Maggie Black and her relationship with NoirCat?

Daphne: She doesn’t hate Maggie! But she does hate some community she’s a part of…I think it’s called DS106.

Julia: We will be sure to look into that. But with the little that you gave us to go on, how do you expect us to find your friend?

Daphne: Trust me, you shouldn’t find her. That’s all I’m saying.


The next task in the case of finding NoirCat was to organize all of the information, evidence, and people we have come across so far. I decided to take the initiative to create a suspect board that ties together our suspects with the evidence that we have found, which we will update over the course of this case. This also created the perfect opportunity to submit an original assignment to the Assignment Bank. Once again, I asked my associate, Kendall Parker, to submit it under her name.  “This Assignment is Suspect!” is its name and organization is its game! If you want to complete it, feel free to check out the up-to-date version of mine on our agency website 24/7. Currently, this is what it looks like:

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As you can see, the board contains some evidence that I did not mention previously. This is because I cannot take full credit for finding it. I have been working with the three other women in Black Widow Agency (Edie, Sylvia, and Margaret). Edie has made some “Lost” posters and discovered the magnetic strip used to disable the microchip in NoirCat. As you can see on the board, this ties back to Joan Crawford, one of the few people who knows about the chip and the doctor who inserted it. In addition, Sylvia discovered NoirCat’s tag and collar, leading us to an abandoned building in downtown Fredericksburg. As of now, these are our only leads, but we will be checking out the abandoned building next.

Creating this board is perfect, because it is representative of our primary media (design). The interview is audio in nature,  which is one of our three supplemental medias (audio, photography, and video).

In addition to contributing to posts on my agency’s website, I also wrote up individual check-in posts, in order to update followers of this case with my personal progress and views. My first check-in was on Wednesday (4/8/15) and the second was posted today, Sunday (4/12/15).

The members of BWA sat down together on Thursday evening to hash out the details of the case to that point. Everyone made great points concerning the case, as some theories are very plausible. However, it would show bias to reveal these theories. We need to evaluate the evidence as it is uncovered to be sure we arrive at the correct conclusion!

I am also the operator of our agency Twitter account and have been updating our followers with the progress of the case throughout the week.

In addition to submitting another original assignment (This Assignment is Suspect!) this week, I also satisfied the final two additional requirements by creating two tutorials. One was for my first original assignment, “Email! Email! Read All About It!”. Following this, I attempted to pay Kendall Parker back for her help by creating a tutorial for an assignment that she completed weeks ago. I wrote a tutorial for the “Splash The Color” assignment. With these tutorials, I have completed all of the additional requirements for ds106. :)

I also took the time to look at all of the other agencies’ progress this week and was able to leave them some personal remarks. I commented on Stirrup Trouble’s post, Chelsea’s post, Sylvia’s post, Rhiannon’s post,  Phoenix’s post, Johnny Corner Pocket’s post, and Sasha’s post.

This week has been a productive one, full of evidence finding and case organization. Although we have no certain leads yet, I’m confident that NoirCat’s location will be discovered soon, considering who’s on the case!  Black Widow Agency will not be stopped!

Jewel out.

I’m in Heaven in Week Eleven

After teaming back up with my fellow MaNOIRpulators and my Grandma last week, we went to work this week establishing ourselves on the web in different capacities. We formed Black Widow Agency (BWA). composed of Margaret Pinault, Julia James (me, of course), Edie Waz, and Sylvia Stone. In order to really plant ourselves into the online world, we created an agency website and a Twitter account. We are bound and determined to get our name out there, so that we can help women in need. Throughout the week, our members have also been creating different advertising materials for the agency including a newsletter, business card, logo, license plate, quizzes, bumper stickers, etc. BWA is ready to get started on missions, as we have established ourselves in the DS106 community as a top agency comprised of intelligent and sexy women (and, yes, that includes Grandma!).

For Week 11, we were required to create 5 stars of web assignments and 5 stars of any kind of media assignments (total of 10). For part of the 5 web assignments, I completed the prompt, “Pop Quiz!”. I created 5 questions and provided the answers given by each agency member. The participant must try to guess which answers I gave. It is a great way to get to know me and my mindset. For the rest of the 5 web stars, I created my first original assignment called, “Email! Email! Read All About It!”. Since the existing web assignments do not really lend themselves to being completed for an entire agency, a perfect opportunity to create my own emerged. The newsletter that I created announces the formation of our agency and gives details on each member’s role in BWA. The next assignment that I completed comes from the design category. I included a      “Noir Valentine” card that our agency received from a mysterious “Secret Admirer”. It was too great to pass up!  My final assignment contributed to our web presence, as I created a “Theme Song” for our agency played to the tune “Black Widow”, by Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora. It includes sound effects and voice-overs that make it unique to BWA. The assignments this week were all created with my agency and its members in mind.

We only had to complete two Daily Creates this week, and I enjoyed both of them tremendously. The first is a birthday card for Maggie Black, the hard-working tutor for DS106.

Happy Birthday, Maggie!

The second is a sound map of Fredericksburg, VA. I was unable to do one for my hometown of Chicago, because I was away on “business” this week. I actually enjoyed the sounds of Fredericksburg. because it is much more peaceful compared to the noisy streets of Chicago.

Until next week, Daily Creates!

I explored my fellow DS106’ers works once again this week.  I commented on Tiffany’s post, Edith’s post, Jota’s post, Amanda’s post, Cody’s post, Brianna’s post, Christine’s post, Gyeore’s post, Stephanie’s post, and Erin’s post.

In addition to the required tasks for Week 11, I also created two original Daily Creates. I really hope they come up soon on the website, because I can’t wait to see the twists that others put on the prompts. The first, “Special High Five”, is a video assignment, and the second, “Begin to Face a Fear Today”, is a drawing assignment. Check out the instructions for each below.

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With one original assignment and two original Daily Creates submitted, I only have to complete one more original assignment and two tutorials to complete the additional requirements.

This week was one full of blood, sweat, and tears. Okay, I have to admit…the blood wasn’t mine and the tears weren’t either. Ha! Anyways, it was also full of hard work. Ciao!

Jewel out.

My Job Away From Both of My Jobs!

I took on a third job this week, and it is certainly full-time! I entered the ds106 world and am not looking back. At first I wasn’t sure I could handle all of the work, in addition to my other two jobs, but I got through this week and am looking forward to expressing myself again next week.

The first section of the week prompted me to complete 15 stars of video assignments. At first, I thought, “What in the world am I going to do? I can’t share but so much of my life with other people”. However, I took a deep breath and found the perfect assignments to share all aspects of my life that I can and want to share. The first one that I completed is the “Name that Book!” assignment. I rightfully chose to use the novel that my book club has just started reading. I found the ideal images to represent the book’s title in a short 6-second Vine. The next assignment is the “Where Do You Want To Go?” prompt, which was bittersweet to complete, because it makes me sad that I will likely never be able to go to Harvard, but it also makes me feel hopeful that I will get to visit Cambridge, Massachusetts one day. Then came time to delve in deeper, as I picked movie scenes that have changed my life. The assignment, “Movie Scenes That Have Changed our Lives” , really gives me some insight into my own life, as I see why I became the person I am today. In order to round out these assignments, I completed the “Special Person Montage”. Since I do not have many people in my life who could fit in here, I decided to complete this video about my best guy friend, Storm. He is an amazing cat (yes, my best friend is a cat) who is more like family to me. I loved making this video, and we even watched it together last night, after a meeting with a client’s husband . These assignments truly provide an outlet for creativity that has been bottled up for a very long time.

The next task for the week was an unusual one. I was asked to partake in an interview. The four interviewers put me in a very compromising position, by the questions that they asked, but I obliged and was very cooperative, in order to avoid suspicion. They even published my interview on a newscast called One on One: Julia James. I am trying not to psych myself out about the strangeness of this request, but it is very hard. I don’t have anything to worry about, I hope!

Reunited and it feels so good! Peaches and Herb’s lyrics are the definition of my reconnection with Edie Waz, Sylvia Stone, and Margaret Pinault. The MaNOIRpulators are back, baby! And they are back with a vengeance. We decided to combine our expertise again, for some agency that the heads of ds106 are forming. I don’t know what the task is yet, but I know our agency will be on top of things, like always!

The Daily Creates for this week were simply to die for! They were a wonderful way to express myself and release some stress after long workdays and sometimes during them. I took a breakfast selfie of the cutest bagel I have ever seen. It was a shame to eat it! Next, I accepted the challenge to draw Batman in 15 seconds. I actually surprised myself with how much I was able to draw of him, and it actually looked somewhat accurate. Finally, I created some bangin’ tree art from a photo I took on the way home from the law firm. The color scheme looks like my closet. So cute!

Look at that smile!

Batman, is that you?

Gee, I'm a tree!

I decided to explore this week and came across some awesome work from people in the ds106 world. Who knew that so many people participate in this?! I commented on Barbara’s post, Brianna’s post, Erin’s post, Amanda’s post, Amy’s post, another one of Brianna’s posts, Brenda’s post, Edith’s post, Phoenix’s post, and Stephen’s post.

The final task was an opportunity for extra credit, and it was actually the first thing that I did this week. I tuned in to a special radio show on Monday night at 9:00 PM. I came home early from the law firm just for this show and it didn’t start until about 9:30 PM. This was unfortunate, because I was supposed to meet my new client, Brenda, at 10:30 PM. Luckily, I was able to postpone, because I really wanted that extra credit. The show was worth waiting for, and I enjoyed interacting with my peers in ds106. Check out some of the tweets that I sent out during the show:

Well, that’s it for my first week at my third job in ds106. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and just may have made a few friends (or at least acquaintances).

Jewel out.



On the Go From Radio to Video!

This week in DS106, we made an evolution from radio to video. As much as I loved the radio portion, video has taken over the 21st century and, therefore, is very familiar. We began the week by wrapping up the playing of radio shows on DS106 Radio, and I decided to tune in to “Get a Clue”. My review of the show is very positive, because it is a great show that is well thought out and executed beautifully. Once again, my favorite part of this process was the tweet-along, as I love interacting with my fellow ds106’ers and professors. Below are some of my tweets from that night:

The next task allowed us to reflect on the past few weeks of creating and listening to our radio show. As we moved into video this week, it was nice to look back on the extensive process of producing the show and also the experience of listening to it with our peers. Reflecting on our radio show creation in a post, allowed me to relive the enjoyment and pride of what we accomplished!

The Daily Creates were an enormous amount of fun this week. I began by creating a video trailer for a character that represents a feeling. Puz Ling (puzzling…get it?) cannot find a place where he fits in…or can he? Puz is one of my greatest cartoon creations! :) The next prompt that I decided to complete was capturing an artistic blur in a photo. I snapped a picture of a plant and the colors blend wonderfully.

It's a plant, I swear!

The next assignment was probably the most time consuming. However, I am very proud of the final outcome. We were required to create a video essay for a film, by analyzing and applying the principles that we learned about in Roger Ebert’s “How To Read A Movie” and three videos of our choice. I chose “Examples of Editing Techniques”, “Camera Angles and Techniques”, and “Hitchcock Loves Bikinis”. Having never watched an Alfred Hitchcock movie before, I decided to view the film, “Notorious”, and he certainly did not disappoint. I was able to apply a lot of Ebert principles about dominance to the scene I chose, and a few points about cinematic techniques from the videos. I thoroughly enjoyed “reading” this movie from an analytical perspective. Check it out:

Out of the three options available this week, I chose the first and completed at least eight stars of video assignments, with four relating to my character and someone else’s. The first assignment that grabbed my attention was the “High School Memories” video. My mom has been working on a scrapbook from high school for me, so I was inspired to go back and look at all of the pictures that I have. This assignment allowed me to make something that I will always treasure! It turns out that… “I lived”!

The assignment that I chose to fulfill the character requirement is unique, compared to the usual approach that I take. I decided to not assume Julia James’ persona, but instead, to look back at all of the work that I did with my character and showcase it in the “Show Off” assignment. I collaborated with Brianne Comden to make a joint video about our characters. Some of the pieces involve both Julia and Margaret, as we established them as granddaughter and grandmother in our radio show.

Capping off the week, we had to create a character category on our blogs and submit it to the DS106 website. Luckily, I already had a “Julia ‘Jewel’ James” category, so all I had to do was submit it.

Although it was not a requirement, I went ahead and commented on a few of my peer’s pieces. I commented on Phoenix’s post, Fatale’s post, Amanda’s post, and Brianna’s post.

I think it is fairly safe to say that my transition from radio to video was problem-free, and some great art was created during the process!

#ds106 #4life


Eight is Great, Let’s Create!

We went back to the basics this week with the typical assignment bank prompts, daily creates, and a few other posts. It was a nice return after the two weeks of radio show work, although I enjoyed doing that tremendously. Speaking of radio shows, our first task for this week was to listen in to a radio show other than our own, tweet along with it, and then write a review. Since my group’s show, “MaNOIRpulators”, aired on Wednesday, that is when I chose to tune in. After listening to our show, “Dead Silence” was aired, and it was so refreshing to listen to another group’s take on noir radio shows. The group did a great job with its suspenseful and twisted plot, and I really enjoyed the experience of listening to it as a whole. In addition to the written review, part of this experience was tweeting along with my peers, so check out a few of my tweets:

Our next task was to get IN[SPIRE]ed!  All of my fellow DS106’ers do great work, and I found four great examples to add to the website submissions. Emily, July, Kathy, and Brian all inspired me this week with their newspaper design, radio bumper, photo digitization, and photoshopped image, respectively. Not only do they motivate me to keep putting the maximum effort into the work that I am doing, they motivate me to think outside the box when doing so!

The Assignment Bank was back this week, and I was able to explore the category Web for the first time. Two out of the three of my assignments this week were from that category. The first prompt that I chose was the “Design an Invoice”, and I created a fictitious invoice for one of my peer’s characters, Victoire Absinthe, as she hired Julia James to get rid of her husband. Julia charges her for a number of items and tasks, including surveillance and travel expenses.

Invoice Photo

The second assignment that I chose to complete is the “You’re A Pinteresting Character” prompt. Since my radio show group established my character, Julia, as Aubrey Howland’s character, Edie Waz’s, cousin, I thought it would be great if they created a joint Pinterest board to display their favorite things. 10 pins relate to Julia, while 10 relate to Edie. They touch on all aspects of their lives, including beauty, fashion, and drinking. Below is a snapshot of the top of the board:

Pinterest board


I collaborated with my great friend, Brianne Comden, for my final Assignment Bank prompt, “Google History Maps Story”. Since Julia is Margaret Pinault’s (Brianne’s character) granddaughter, we decided to base the story off of a visit to Julia’s grandmother’s grave, which is really a cover for a “business” trip to France. It is quite a sketchy and interesting story, so check it out!

Our next task was the one that took the least amount of time, but I  think it will be very useful in the future of this class. We were required to create Gmail and Twitter accounts for our characters! I found this assignment to be fun, because I was able to expand Julia James’ social media world and really allow her to interact with other characters in DS106. Her Gmail is and her Twitter handle is @OneBrightJewel.

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Our commenting assignment from the past two weeks was repeated again this week, as we were required to comment on ten of our peers’ pieces. I am glad it was, because I love going back and viewing so many great works of art that amaze me each week. I commented on Tyler’s post, Barbara’s post, AdventuresOfM’s post, Lauren’s post, Spencer’s post, Brianne’s post, WildWoodBlog’s post, Landon’s post, Kayleigh’s post, and hungryMax’s post. I really enjoyed all of these assignments, and hope I was able to brighten their days with my comments!

The options for daily creativity were abundant this week. There were so many great prompts that I wish I had time to do more! However, the three that I chose are three that I am very proud of. My Daily Creates include the display of many sides of myself in photography, an abstract drawing of my favorite moment from the past week (Watching Netflix, of course!), and a video of things that make me laugh out loud.

The Many Sides of Kendall!

Binge Watching is an Addiction

Well, that’s all folks! Week 8 was great, and I’m sure week 9 will be divine!

#ds106 #4life