The critical search practiced I utilized for my guide were very different and much more useful than ones I have used in the past. Again, the way class was structure, doing a small piece of the guide at a time was extremely helpful and allowed me to do full research. The first difference was rather than google, I utilized the libraries website to try and find published articles relevant to my topic.
Also, actually visiting the site made a huge impact on the way my paper was written. Without attending the gallery, I do not believe someone would be able to make a coherent guide. Genre criteria was not something I consciously thought about while writing the guide BUT the audience most definitely was. I know for a fact if I was writing to an older population my word choice would be very different. It would probably not be as casual as it is now writing to other college students. The entire structure of the guide may be different such as things like where someone may get lost. I do not believe my guide would be a good one for someone outside of my audience. I think they would understand it, but I would definitely go about making it differently. I used the genre criteria as more of a checklist of things to complete for a grade whereas my audience was something I had to appeal to. By forgetting the criteria and only using it as a reference, it made the work more enjoyable. It was no longer school work but instead something I was creating for fun. My sources are very easy to understand. I used the actual website of the SU Art Galleries, a small Syracuse news article as well as an easy to understand article about African Masks. Nothing in the sources is beyond a lay person’s understanding of art which was my goal. I myself not being a big art aficionado, I know what it feels like to have art jargon fly over your head in conversation or in readings. I wanted to avoid anyone from getting that feeling.
Overall, I have discovered that for me personally, I struggle with generating enough research and where I look for it. I believe that this project has definitely helped me better understand where to look (example being ProQuest). I should now be better at finding solid articles instead of wasting time sifting through the good and bad. In addition writing a guide is a piece that I have not had to do before. I have learned from feedback that I am good at conveying a voice that is good for advice and not overbearing. I also was told that I do a good job of thinking about what the reader will want to know before they enter the gallery which was nice to hear. This is a surprise because I was never told that I was good at advice in day to day speech. An area of weakness is my physical descriptions of artwork. I attribute some of this to my lack of art background and I will have to do a better job in the future.
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