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Website Updates

Finally at a place where we can focus on feedback.

Welcome back one and all. This is Ben Brown Jr., the visual designer for the site you are currently visiting, 4elements Theatre Company, writing this from Beaverton, Oregon, USA. 

Even though it isn’t exactly where we would like everything to be, the structure, links and layout have been cast for this project. I will be working with Kate Harris further to tweak things here and there, including training for her, over the next few weeks. 

Most importantly, what she wanted was something visually bolder and mobile-friendly. There was nothing wrong with the previous site, I wish to go on the record as saying. However, as the means of the technology advances on how we access content on the world wide web, the site needed some much needed updating on being accessible to those primarily using mobile devices. 

By simply altering the elements in the logo, as well as borrowing from its color scheme, I have been able to bring life to the screen that previously wasn’t utilized. This also made for a great favicon, the little website icon that you see when you access the site.

The previous site didn’t have a great many photos. Additionally, with changes beyond anyone’s control, including Google updating their API recently and making some of the previous website’s functionality conflict and not operational, some changes had to be made, and fast. (API stands for application programming interface is a set of subroutine definitions, protocols, and tools for building application software, and if it sounds like a headache, it can be.) 

Using the color scheme in the logo, I was able to create a series of linked panels to show continuity.

One of the things you will notice is that all of the videos are now directly linked to a YouTube account. This is simply for ease of access, and it works well with the coding inherent in WordPress, which is the platform being used for this site. 

Not a great many images? Not a problem! By utilizing the logo in a manner not seen previously, I was able to create a space where important website content could be seen and accessed quickly.

Another thing that Ms. Harris requested was something more visually bold and bright. Using the color scheme in the 4elements logo, as well as the items in the logo itself, I was able to break up dead space and draw visual interest to each of the pages, much like what is done in a magazine layout. 

Just because you don’t have a lot on visual content for your site doesn’t mean it has to be dull. Using layout, subtle text changes and freebies, like this map from Google altered slightly, I have been able to draw interest without sacrificing written content.

Additionally, it seemed that there were not a lot of pics that we could fully make use of for some of the headers and banners. Again, using some simple color tricks in Photoshop and some archived images, I was able to bring the players to life on the screen in a manner that had not been utilized prior. 

Rehearsal for Daughters of the Revolution earlier this year. This image was originally in color, then brought down to grayscale in Photoshop, then duotones and slightly color modified.

There is still work to be done, and know that this, like any other good website, is always a work-in-progress. Your feedback in critical, and we look forward to what you have to say. 

This photo is by Paul Timon. He is obviously a pro, and this image worked well as a stand-alone piece for the “About Us” page.

I hope that everyone has an amazing time during the Daughters of the Revolution Tour this year. Working on this site has been a blast, and it has allowed me the opportunity to do some things for those in Ireland working on the Repeal the 8th Campaign and some other things to assist not just this site, but for other sites doing similar types of work. Thank you Kate, and thank you all. 

Screenshots from the mobile version of the website.

Love to you all.

Ben “Bear” Brown Jr., owner
www.aceofspadespdx.com

Yes, the website HAS been redesigned.

The biggest hurdles have just been cleared.

Hello one and all. This is Ben Brown Jr., broadcasting from Beaverton, OR, just west of the city of Portland, which I am certain many of you have heard of. 

And, by the way, it is really nothing like the TV show Portlandia. That’s like saying Hollywood is full of movie stars, when honestly, if you walk the streets of tinsel town, it’s pretty dismal. 

Stating the obvious here: The Lady Kate has asked for a major redesign to this website. The structure and framework are now completed. Over the next several days, I will be importing much of the website’s previous content, a little at a time. I have already uploaded the Blog Posts. Next will come some design things, logos, etc. and most importantly, a major push and focus on Daughters of the Revolution.

One of the major reasons for the re-design was to present a more responsive, mobile-friendly layout. We can’t shine and serve you if won’t tell us one way or another how these changes are working for you. So don’t by shy, because feedback is greatly appreciated.

Love to you all.

Ben Brown Jr.
www.aceofspadespdx.com
www.aospdx.com

Daughters of the Revolution performing in Dublin and Waterford this Sept!

Following a sold-out run in Dublin’s Harbour Playhouse in 2016, 4elements are launching the national tour of Daughters of the Revolution with two performances hosted by the Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital on Sept 14th and 15th, 7pm. Tickets €15 (plus booking fee) available through Eventbrite.

Daughters of the Revolution will be in Central Arts, Waterford City, on September 16th and 17th, shows 8pm Saturday, 4pm Sunday. Tickets €12/10 available from Central Arts.

Directed by ambitious theatre-maker/writer Kate Harris, with original music by award-winning composer Doc O’Connor, and staring Clodagh Dowling, Benjamin Musgrave, and Diana O’Connor. Daughters of the Revolution is a darkly satirical theatre provocation, offering vivid insights into exactly what women have to go through to get from pregnancy to birth.

Daughters of the Revolution follows Evelyn Murphy on her journey down the rabbit hole of maternity. Evelyn’s story creates a picture of contemporary Ireland in a time of rising birth-rates, uncertain economic prospects, and a health service in crisis. 

Join the conversation!

Following the performances, the audience will have the opportunity to discuss the reality of the maternity services with a panel of experts drawn from obstetrics, midwifery, and the community.  Daughters of the Revolution aims to create a space for women, families, and healthcare professionals to come together and share experiences and ideas.

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Daughters of the Revolution National Tour

4elements are launching a tour of Daughters of the Revolution in September 2017!

We have been working for the last year with hospitals and communities around Ireland to tour Daughters of the Revolution and we are ready!

With thanks to our partners Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital, School of Midwifery-Trinity College Dublin, Waterford Healing Arts Trust, Waterford City and County Council Arts Office, National Women’s Council of Ireland, and AIMS Ireland we will be starting in Dublin at the Rita Kelly Theatre, Coombe Hospital on the 14th of September.

Over the next year will bring the Revolution to Waterford, Cork, Galway, and Limerick.

Dates and Times:

Rita Kelly Theatre-CWIUH Dublin September 14th and 15th at 7pm.

Central Arts-Waterford September 16th at 8pm and 17th at 4pm.

Granary Theatre-Cork January 18th-20th 2018 at 8pm.

Mick Lally Theatre-Galway February 23rd and 24th 2018 at 8pm.

Belltable Theatre-Limerick March 8th 2018

Join the Revolution this year in a theatre near you!

4elements welcomes Sarah Martin from Georgetown University as Reserach Intern

4elements are delighted to have Sarah on board to kick-off a new Theatre of the Oppressed research project.
Sarah Martin fell in love with Theatre of the Oppressed at first sight as a student studying the intersection of art and social justice.

Sarah is a filmmaker, director, journalist (for The Hoya and her podcast), co-host of Resistance Radio (WGTB), and a singer songwriter. She is interested in using many different mediums of art to bridge gaps and create human connections.

Sarah is currently working on her BA from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

Places are available for Theatre of the Oppressed training workshop

Introduction to Theatre of the Oppressed: One Day Forum Theatre Workshop

Date: Wednesday, June 8th

Time: 10am-4pm

Venue: Lantern Centre, Dublin 8

Cost: €40

Facilitators: Kate Harris and Mo Levy

Contact: info@4elements.ie to reserve a place

This workshop offers training in Theatre of the Oppressed, with a focus on understanding and creating Forum Theatre.  The workshop will cover group facilitation techniques, structuring a Theatre of the Oppressed workshop, and devising Forum Theatre.

This is a practical workshop, the games and exercises in the workshop can be used with any group.

Forum Theatre is an interactive, problem-solving model.  Performances are devised from collective experience around a specific social issue. The audience are invited to engage in the search for a new approach to the problem, by taking part in re-imagining the story.

The workshop is open to activists, people working in community contexts, and anyone interested in creating theatre for social change.

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