"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Songs of the Pioneers song from TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon's old-fashioned newspaper column, cross-breeding metaphors and journalism and art, for readers in 150 countries.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

"Thinking in tweets," revolutionaries in #clarkclass

Sara Cowan in #clarkclass

I think they're the revolutionaries...many of the speakers for #clarkclass, twitter for journalists, and I came up with that term today when speaking about the first of today's speakers, 2001 UCO grad and former student, Sara Cowan @DeluxeOK because of the impact they're having on OKC culture.  She's a creative person with a big smile who quilts, paints, connects, and is sassy. The reason I invited her to speak is that she made a snarky comment about not being invited. That's the way she is. Of her art, she says she" stitches my feelings." 
@Okieprof, @DeluxeOK #selfie
It's always a bit presumptuous to say someone is "self-made," but Sara is one of those, who has taken opportunities and risks and built an identity and living doing what she wants, raising a child, and being a part of the arts scene in Oklahoma City, using twitter and other tools. She holds part time jobs and is a founder of Oklahoma Deluxe, an annual craft and art bazaar featuring made in Oklahoma work.
After it was over, she took a photo of us, and later tweeted to me,"Thanks for putting up with me, again." My pleasure.
Here are the student comments about her conversation with us in our debriefing, recorded by @JenniferHesel.

  • “I think in Tweets”
  • “I have no fear about asking for what I want.”
  • “I stitch my feelings.”
  • She has sass—she didn’t come right out and say “be yourself” yet she is herself
  • She know hers limits, she knows what she’s good at and what she’s not
  • She wants people to stay in Oklahoma and make good things happen
  • She wants to give back to the community
  • She’s not afraid to say what she thinks
  • “Every job I’ve ever had has been created for me.”
  • She is honest, she has no hidden meaning
  • She emphasizes how important staying local is--shopping, interacting with local business, artists, musicians, etc.
  • Regarding Twitter, she says there is no limit to what doors it can open
  • “140 character limit is a good thing.”  She says it’s like communism; we’re all equal on twitter
  • She wants to grow Oklahoma and show them why they should stay here and says that people who don’t think anything is happening here just don’t know where to look or where to find it
  • She believes that art is storytelling
  • She is herself on twitter, but also knows when to reel it in
  • Regarding politics she says that if you want change you should stop tweeting about it and get involved
  • “The most valuable thing about twitter to me is promoting other people’s events.”
  • She loves making connections between people
  • She says that twitter is more timely than Facebook
  • The whole point of twitter is to interact with people
  • “I have built a lot of relationships with people (on Twitter) who share values with me.”
  • She says it’s important for art to have a presence in the world
  • Her advice was to look for opportunities in journalism from the other side, experience things and see how it’s different.


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