Jeff Harris Travels

Archive for the ‘Study Abroad’ Category

Time Panoramas

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One of this semester’s assignments for my Painting & Photography class was to create something that dealt with time. It was entirely free in what was created and what medium it was created it, as long as it focused on time.

So I created three “time panoramas.” I set up my camera at the beach, the port and the City of Arts & Sciences and took photos, usually about an hour or so before the sun started to go down. Later I stitched the photographs together in Photoshop to make a “panorama” of a place through time. I pretty happy with the way it turned out. My favorite is the City of Arts and Sciences one. The others just seem like practice ones.

I have yet to print them, so hopefully I’ll locate a place that prints photos in the next week or so. Only two weeks left of classes!

Ciudad Time Panorama
City of Arts and Sciences (view the LARGE version by clicking here)

Playa Time Panorama
Beach (view the LARGE version by clicking here)

Puerto Time Panorama
Port (view the LARGE version by clicking here)


Written by Jeff

May 12, 2009 at 3:48 pm

Viernes Already!

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This week, as with most weeks, has pasted quickly, but what a week it has been. On Monday I spent most of the day in classrooms without professors. In Photo II, the professor arrived nearly on time, but disappeared shortly thereafter, and only returned with fifteen minutes left of class. I did manage to explain to him my idea for my project after making eye contact with him while he was in his office. Later on in the day, the professor for Photography and Painting never showed up, but someone thought he mentioned in the previous class that he would later in the class. It’s like the professors don’t share the same concern of time as the students, or at least non-Spanish students do.

In other academic news, I attempted to go to a class called Foundations of Painting for the first time on Tuesday. Once I found out who the professor was I asked him if I was in the right class. His response was that class finished last semester, in January. And to think I had my schedule all figured out! On Wednesday I went to the Bellas Artes’ International Office to ask what was up. Their response was the same as the professor’s, and they told me I could take Color II, which didn’t work with my schedule and it was a higher level course than someone who has never painted should take. Also, I was attempting to take the foundations class because it was only on Tuesdays and fit well with my schedule. Luckily I heard from UMBC’s Study Abroad office the same day I emailed a question about credit transferability (unlike the UMBC Art Department’s exchange director’s lack of response for an email I sent a week ago). It turns out a class worth 9 credits here transfers as 4 to UMBC, contrary to my belief that they would transfer as 3 credits. So I don’t have to worry about Foundations of Painting or Color II or whatever it is and I will be earning 16 UMBC credits for the semester (one more than usual).

Also this week the idea of going to Dublin, Ireland popped into my head while looking at March on a calendar. I made arrangements to be in Dublin from Saturday, March 14 to Wednesday, the 18th, during the St. Patrick’s celebration. I won’t have class that week because of the local celebration of Fallas and I’ll be able to make it back in time for the incredible finale of that on Thursday, March 19. Hopefully the journey to Dublin and back via RyanAir will go smoothly.

Written by Jeff

February 27, 2009 at 4:50 pm


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I have my schedule all figured out now. My first real full day of class was this past Thursday. Mondays will be crazy long, but the upside of that is that on Fridays I won’t have class at all.

Here’s my schedule:

Photo II (8-11 CET/2-5 EST)
A/V Media Production II (Moviemaking) (11:30-2:30 CET/5:30-8:30am EST)
Painting & Photography (3-6 CET/9-12pm EST)
Spanish (7:30-9 CET/1:30-3pm EST)

Multimedia Production (12-2 CET/6-8am EST)

Multimedia Production (Lab) (10:30-11:30 CET/4:30-5:30am EST)
Spanish (7:30-9 CET/1:30-3pm EST)

Photo II (8-11 CET/2-5 EST)
A/V Media Production II (Moviemaking) (11:30-2:30 CET/5:30-8am EST)
Painting & Photography (3-6 CET/9-12pm EST)

No classes

I’m positive that I’ll have enough credits to transfer back to be considered full-time at home, despite the lack of response from the people running the program at UMBC. Nothing new there, I suppose.

Written by Jeff

February 21, 2009 at 1:00 pm


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Written by Jeff

January 31, 2009 at 8:35 am

Posted in Granada, Spain, Study Abroad

In Valencia

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I’ve made it to Valencia.

I just got in from grocery shopping. I bought some potato cake (like the Señora made… or did she?!), corn flakes, hamburgers (I’m slightly embarrassed to say), some crackers, ketchup (I bought the cheap brand and not Heinz. It was tempting). I forgot milk for the corn flakes. But the store is about 1 minute away, so no biggie.

Last night, before leaving for the train, my roommate Matt and I were forced fed (practically). The señora always made great food, but the quantity she made it in was always over the top. It will be nice to eat at my own pace now. I’ll miss Granada, but I think I’m ready for life in Valencia.

So I arrived in Valencia at about 5:30 this morning. It was about 9ºC (48.2ºF), but it definitely felt colder. After sitting around in the train station and skyping (I made it a verb) with Madre and watching some Spain shows on my iPod, I headed by taxi to my apartment on Calle de Santos Justo y Pastor.

I have one German roommate, a girl named Igna. There’s a German guy who’s leaving on Sunday. Two Peruvian girls are coming on Sunday, the same day I’ll be moving into a larger, more quiet room. Right now I have the room closest to the door and next door neighbor…

At about 4 or so, as I was attempting to take a cat nap, loud music started playing. Then screaming started. Then things started to be thrown. The screaming got louder, the music got louder, and the wall was vibrating. My roommates came to see what was up. Supposedly the neighbor sometimes flips out and starts singing really loud and yelling. He kept repeating “¡Olé!” I was more entertained than scared, but it was ridiculous. The cops and paramedics showed up (peep hole video below).

I also made another video. It shows about half of my (last) walk to the apartment from school in Granada. It’s made up of about 600 photos.

Also today, I registered with the Universidad Politécnica de Valencia’s Bellas Artes (Fine Arts) department. I won’t find out what my schedule will be like until Tuesday, at the earliest, after I pick up my ID and supplement information and attempt to sign up for classes online. I have until February 16 to finalize the schedule.

Written by Jeff

January 30, 2009 at 12:50 pm

Last Day in Granada

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Tomorrow will be my last day in Granada, and today is my last full day.

Tomorrow I have my final exam at 10AM. Following the test, ISA is having pizza for us one-monthers. Back to the apartment after that to make sure I have everything packed and ready to go for my train ride Thursday night. The train departs Granada at 9:55PM Thursday night and gets into Valencia at 5:05AM Friday morning.

I was able to contact Paqui, the woman I am renting from, and she’ll be meeting me at 9AM Friday, so I’ll be waiting around in the train station for a good 3 to 4 hours. Fun! It’s surprising to me that the two times I have spoken with her on the phone, I have been able to understand what she says and have her understand why I say. It’s kind of a confidence booster.

I made it up to the El Mirador de San Cristóbal (a vantage point) in the Albaicín neighborhood of Granada. Click below to see some of the photos I took:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Jeff

January 28, 2009 at 5:30 pm

Posted in Granada, Spain, Study Abroad

Almuerzo (Lunch)

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I wanted to make sure I had at least one photo of the food my senora makes before I go off to Valencia. For lunch today we had ham, fried cheese, a spinach salad with walnuts, an egg, bread, and french fries.

Written by Jeff

January 25, 2009 at 9:32 am