End of Semester Reflection!

This course has taught me a lot about communication and storytelling with various mediums.

First, in terms of technology, I learned some strategies when recording audio and video, how to edit on Final Cut Pro, and how to optimize photos on Photoshop. The first time I tried to record soundbites, the audio was barely audible – most likely because the mic needed a new battery – but that experience taught me to always check the audio meter bars and listen to the playback on a computer, not just the recording device. I also found out that background noise is not easy to fix, so it’s important to find a quiet location and reduce background sounds as much as possible. It definitely helps to remove all jewelry, hold still, and silence all cell phones. Fortunately, when the audio is clear and stable, the editing is easier – especially after some practice with the software.

Bro. Dennis said several times this semester, “The only rule of photography is photos must have only one focus!” And it’s certainly true with still photos and video. With my audio slideshow and Taste of STMU video, I liked to pick a single focus of each shot and take the same photo/video from multiple angles so I’d have options during editing. Sometimes, a shot would have to much visual information competing to be the focus, so it helped to have a variety of images of the same subject.

For me, the hardest part of this class was setting up interviews with subjects. I’m naturally shy and afraid to bother people, so I had to be mindful of asking someone for their consent to be interviewed and photographed/filmed. During the interview process, it’s best to get it right the first time – especially for someone who’s too nervous about asking for a redo. When I interviewed my subjects, I blocked out a good chunk of time so we could talk before the mic started recording, and then I carried on with the interview. Looking back, I realize that this put us both at ease and because my subjects relaxed before the recording, they gave me lengthy responses that I could use to tell their story through editing.

In short, I saw the value of doing something well the first time so every subsequent step is easier: finding a good subject makes the interview easier; a good interview makes the storytelling easier while good, clear audio makes the editing easier; and a good story allows the visuals fall in place.

KSTM News Brief

Check out my KSTM News Brief

In this project, I used Garage Band for the first time… It was a different experience from Final Cut Pro, especially when it came to layering sounds. This project was also a good way to practice annunciating words clearly and accurately but still emotive. I also learned how difficult it is to pace a segment so everything fits together. But the broadcast turned out pretty well for my first time!

The St. John’s Bible and the Vulnerable in Society

Bob O’Connor thanks Fr. Tom of St. Mary’s University for his introduction.

On October 16, St. Mary’s University hosted The St. John’s Bible and the Vulnerable in Society, a presentation lead by associate professor of theology, Robert “Bob” O’Connor, Ph.D. O’Connor displayed the masterfully crafted volumes of the St. John’s Bible at St. Mary’s and demonstrated how the illuminated text reflects the modern world and the issues humanity faces. O’Connor also questioned the meaning of vulnerability and offered a new way of looking at glory in the Gospels.

The presentation was sponsored by Rubén and Verónica Escobedo and is a part of St. Mary’s tradition.

Carne Guisada

Anna Padilla, a mother of a St. Mary’s student, demonstrates how to cook carne guisada, a classic Mexican dish. She also explains how she learned to cook from her mother and elder sister.

Carne Guisada recipe:


• 1 lbs cut up beef (either stew meat or pot roast meat)

• 1 can tomato sauce

• 1/2 tsp onion powder

• 1/2 tsp garlic powder

• 1/2 tsp cumin powder

• 1/2 tsp salt

• 1/2 tsp pepper

• 4 cups water


First, brown cut-up beef in pot until seared. Then add all other ingredients and stir as needed. Cover the pot with a lid and let the meat simmer for 45 minutes or until tender. Ingredients and cooking time may vary depending on taste and cooking process.

San Antonio Family Relaxes on a Lazy Sunday

In these photos…

  • Twelve-year-old 7th grader, M. Padilla, solves his Rubik’s Cube, one of his favorite pastimes, during a relaxing weekend.
  • San Antonio native, Anna Padilla (née Calderón), parish coordinator and mother of three, irons her youngest son’s button-down shirts.
  • In the middle of ironing, Anna Padilla refills her iron with water on a typical Sunday afternoon. “Okay, I’m ready for a break now,” she laughs after hanging the final shirt.
  • Retired airman and father of three, Raul David Padilla, unwinds in an armchair by reading the San Antonio Express News after mowing the grass this past Sunday.
  • Retired after 27 years of service in the U.S. Air Force, San Antonio resident, David Padilla keeps up with politics via the San Antonio Express News (twitter).

FA 19 Media Pro Class!

The Fall 2019 class of Media Production I students:

Top row, left to right: Michaelangelo Betancourt , Alejandro Beltran Del Rio

Second row from top, left to right: Jocelyn Alvarez , Sofia Ruescas, and Alyssa Vela

Upper middle row, left to right: Brandon Villarreal, Jonier Gutierrez, and Maria Esquivel

Lower middle row, left to right: Renée Padilla, Alice Thane, and Janice Rodriguez

Bottom row, left to right: Victoria Valle, Samantha Schulte, and Paul Pruski

Not pictured: Norma Espinoza

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