Carmen 2

Carmen Aguilar y Wedge

Experience Design and Creative Director, Co-Founder Hyphen Labs

Aguilar y Wedge is a Latinx engineer, artist and researcher. In 2014, she co-founded Hyphen-Labs, an international team of women with backgrounds in engineering, science, architecture, turned designers synthesizing art and technology to create meaningful experiences. Emphasizing experimentation through worldbuilding, the team finds creative solutions and applications to complex problems using new media, emerging technology, robotics, and computation.

Description

You put on a headset in a real life beauty salon in real life, and, in seconds, you’re transported to a virtual one. It’s full of colors, shapes, music, and the soothing voice of a narrator. She explains that you’re in a different world now, and you’re about to contribute to the “synaptic lineage.” The setting is intriguing and futuristic, the story is unique, and every detail so carefully laid out. We talk to Carmen Aguilar y Wedge, one of the creators of the NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism, a virtual reality experience that’s appeared at Sundance, Tribeca, and a number of other film festivals. She shares how she and her team at Hyphen Labs created this artistic and deeply technical exhibit.

Show Notes

Transcript

[00:00:01.18] SY: (Music) Welcome to the CodeNewbie podcast, where we talk to people on their coding journey in hopes of helping you on yours. I'm your host Saron, and today we're talking about virtual reality. About a year ago, I had the privilege of speaking at the School of Poetic Computation, a bootcamp that combines art and code. And after I gave my talk, I met this woman.

[00:00:30.04] CA: My name is Carmen Aguilar y Wedge. I'm the co-founder of Hyphen Labs. And I use emerging technology and new media to augment experiences -

[00:00:43.02] SY: She was working on this project. It's called NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism. And when she told me about it, I thought - oh my god, I have to get you on the show! The project itself is hard to explain - there's a link to the teaser in your show notes that you should totally watch. But it's nothing like I've ever seen. It's art and storytelling and culture and it's very technical. It's been shown at Sundance Film Fest, Tribeca Film Fest, South by Southwest, and many other places. And today, we get to take a look at how she and her team at Hyphen Labs took a pretty complex idea of a grand, artistic, immersive experience, and actually built it. After this.

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[00:03:32.11] SY: That is the most sophisticated - sorry, I'm still stuck on your name pronunciation, because that is the most sophisticated, fanciest name I think we've had on the show so far. Can you say your name again?

[00:03:44.11] CA: Carmen Aguilar y Wedge.

[00:03:48.14] SY: Ooh, oh my goodness.

[00:03:49.08] CA: So, in Latin America, you combine two names - your father and your mother's with an y, and in America it's a hyphen, which is kind of how we came up with the name Hyphen Labs, which is actually joining two things together. At Hyphen Labs, we join art and technology, or research and design, or science and social awareness, and social justice, and themes like that.

[00:04:19.15] SY: And one project that you've spent a lot of time and money and probably some sweat and tears on as well is called NSAF, which stands for NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism. Tell us about that.

[00:04:31.18] CA: So, NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism is a four-part project. It's an installation, it's product design, it's virtual reality, and it's scientific research, all revolved around black women and their role in society, technology, futurism, and design.

[00:04:52.03] SY: Ok, so let's unpack of that a little bit. Let's start with neuro. Where does the neuro part come in?

[00:04:58.23] CA: Neuro comes from Ashley, she's a speculative neuroscientist, she's one of our partners at Hyphen Labs. So we're interested in understanding the decisions that we make, how they influence our well-being and us as human beings, and then also when we're looking at the brain, why there are certain groups, others, let's say, that aren't considered in the design or in their deeds and experiences aren't considered when designing for brain augmentation. There are certain technologies that already exist that focus on optimization and synaptic plasticity and trying to get users into flow states. But that isn't necessarily accessible to all people, so when we started looking at the neuro, we started looking at the brain, and what would happen if black women were the pioneers of brain augmentation and optimization.

[00:06:02.22] SY: So you mention that a lot of times these tools, these experiences, aren't necessarily accessible to everyone. What makes them inaccessible?

[00:06:11.24] CA: Definitely hardware makes it inaccessible. But also the designers, the people who are creating hardware themselves, may not be familiar with the experiences or the needs of certain demographics. When you look at virtual reality, even the head-mounted display, it's difficult to put glasses inside those displays -

[00:06:40.29] SY: Yes, I have really big glasses and I have that pain point all the time.

[00:06:42.21] CA: Right, so that's where we, we started looking at - we call it a human-centered design approach, and how can you look at the needs and experiences of a certain demographic and design in response to those things.

[00:06:57.08] SY: So we got neuro down. Speculative - what is that about?

[00:07:00.02] CA: Speculative - we started looking at projects that imagine how our future will be and speculate on the things, or the society that we live in, and the things that we'll need, but that don't exist. And we started designing products and a virtual reality experience based on speculating ok, let's say we didn't have cell phones to record police brutality, or we had them, but as we know in our society, it puts us in danger when we start recording other people who are having conflict or ourselves. So, how can we add an element, or an interface, so we can start recording confrontations from the touch of a button, embedded inside of our earrings, for example. And speculating on that. The most speculative product that we've designed is we call it the Octavia Electrode, which is a remix of transcranial electrodes and transcranial direct stimulation, which is a technology that does put you into flow and focused states, but you need electro to scalp contact to achieve the results. So, we embedded those into hair extensions, so that you could have them with braiding techniques, which is not something that we are practicing, but we speculate that this is how the technology could be used within different cultural practices.

[00:08:39.16] SY: Very interesting. Ok, so Afro - do you want to split up Afro and Feminism, or you want to do it as a unit?

[00:08:46.25] CA: Well, AfroFeminism, I think that - I mean, we're talking specifically about black women here. When you look at feminism and the historical context around feminism, it can be targeted to one demographic, so we wanted to call out that this is a project about AfroFeminism - about black women - and their contributions to technology and society, to the beauty industry, to futurism, to the digital world and game design and virtual reality and science, really.

[00:09:23.27] SY: That is so interesting to me, because you're not black, right, you're Mexican-American. So when you're working on a project focused on AfroFeminism, how do you understand that experience, how do you appreciate that experience, given that it's not your direct upbringing?

[00:09:41.05] CA: Realistically, this is a project to support one of my best friends. And I'm in love with AfroFeminism and AfroFuturism. I'm in love with many different cultures. And one of the most exciting parts about this project is that the women that worked on this project - we're from many different cultures. Ece is Turkish, Nitzan is Israeli, Halime is Mexican and Lebanese, Loude is Guatemalan and Canadian, I'm American and Mexican - at Hyphen Labs, we work with women from all over the world. We want to collectively see the world become a safe space for the people that we love, appreciate, and are inspired by. It is not my story, but I think it's a story that needs to be told, and virtual reality is a really interesting medium to tell it through, because it has not been adopted widely, as film has, and so there's a much different bar for entry. How can we decrease prejudice and bias, using virtual reality? And how do you go about measuring that, how do you go about creating experiences that can actually quantify one's prejudices and bias and then see if you can change it.

[00:11:04.18] SY: Let's explore the virtual reality experience itself. I sit down, I put on the headset - what happens next?

[00:11:13.02] CA: So normally, before you even put on the headset, we design a physical installation, which is a beauty salon, and we invite you to enter Brooks' Brain Lab, which looks exactly like a salon - you have mirrors, which are kind of funky, in front of you, you have salon chairs, and then you have an area where there are products, that are displaying some of the speculative products that we've designed. You sit and put on the visor and you're transported into a virtual salon. ("Ooh, Audrey got a lot going on in her head. She must've had a busy week. Hey baby, is this your first time contributing to the synaptic lineage? Well let me tell you..") But instead of you in the mirror, you see a young black girl with Afro puffs, looking back at you. And you can start to move your head, and she moves her head, and you look around, since it is a 360 experience, and you see Nayima ("This is autonomous network, gathering and distributing communal memories and knowledge. Collective experience is carried through human agents, and hosted on local servers as communal data is..."). One of the characters in the story who's actually the venture capitalist of Greenwood Ventures, she has her own backstory, but she starts telling you about why this place exists, and that there was some type of cognitive tyranny, that made it so that Brooks and Nayima had to create their own space out in the multiverse, where they could practice some of their cognitive optimization techniques and collective memory sharing. And Brooks comes over ("Ok, Nayima, that's enough. Face the mirror and we'll get started") and we have this big chandelier with these electrodes kind of dripping down from it, and she talks to you and tells you about which region of the brain she's going to optimize ("I think we should go with the kitchen clusters today. They follow natural patterns of new growth and provide the best level of stimulation for beginners. Since this is your first time, you may see visuals.") And at that point, you kind of float through the mirror into this vision scene. (Music). It's made up of a black, shiny material that's water-like and reflective, with tv's that have hands sticking out of them and they're kind of glitching on the ground. In the background, you have this architecture of a city that's mirrored on top and on bottom, you have shoes, there's a shoe island, there are things that are remixed from our reality that are placed inside this virtual reality scape, as well as the products that are remixed and resized, and you float through this space without a body. And you arrive at a temple, and this temple has three characters, and the three of them tell you that in this reality, there's no limitation of your reality, and that you're free to imagine what it is that you want. (Music). ("You are free from the constraints that have been placed on you throughout reality. There is no pain or suffering in this world. The only limit is your imagination. This is a blank slate.") You kind of come back from that experience, and Brooks meets you, and she's there as a hair salon or brain salon. ("The installation went well. Your synapses should be firing optimally now. How are you feeling?") And gives you the next coordinates to your modulation session. And that's the end of episode one.

[00:15:45.11] SY: How did you come up with this?

[00:15:48.08] CA: (Laughs)

[00:15:51.10] SY: It's so detailed and so specific, and I've seen the demo - it's absolutely beautiful. It's absolutely beautiful. I've never seen anything like it. Where did you come up with it?

[00:16:00.07] CA: Where do we come up with it? We're really interested in science and science fiction and literature and music and fashion, in storytelling, in new media, and we wanted to create something with - that we hadn't seen before, and that was layered, and that touched elements of history, but also pop culture, and that was rooted in society but diverted from the typical narrative of "The other isn't good enough. The other isn't attractive. The other isn't capable." We all have felt othered in our careers, in spaces that we've been in, and we are enough, we do know how to tell stories, we do know how to create interesting things. So, it's really been a story that's been many years in the making. It was just the right time that allowed us to create it in this way.

[00:17:05.16] SY: So, with all of the parts of this world you just described, does everything have a meaning to you, or is it more of a creative adventure, where you thought, oh, this will be really cool and this will be really pretty.

[00:17:18.07] CA: I mean, there's aesthetic elements to it, but no, everything inside of the space has meaning. The city itself is made up of the ultrabeams, which is the transparent sunscreen that we created, or we imagined. The earrings are a ship that is going through the world and scanning the space. The flag of the world is hyperface, which is the textile that we created with Adam Harvey, that confuses computer vision. But everything within the space has a meaning, yeah.

[00:17:57.23] SY: What did the process look like to come up with that world? I imagine there was probably tons of brainstorming and sticky notes and white boards involved. How did you literally construct this world?

[00:18:09.23] CA: We actually didn't have any white boards. We have big notebooks. Ece is our creative director, an incredibly creative woman. She's an architect, so she really understands space and how one feels within spaces. So, we've been talking about this since the inception of the project, about creating this space where these characters would release you from racism, or oppression, or systematic, institutional oppressions that exist within our daily lives. And we wanted the space to divert from media. We wanted it to reminiscent of popular culture, but be a new space, be really beautiful, be able to defy the rules of physics. To play with materials. So, we all sat down and had a bunch of pieces of paper and created different layouts of what it could look like, and we started building it in 3D. And she would play around on the computer, and we would look in the visor and then we would sit together and say oh, let's try this variation, let's try that variation. And then we'd put the visor on we'd say like, ah, that's it! And kind of move on from there.

[00:19:36.12] SY: How long did it take to get to the final version?

[00:19:39.19] CA: We started the project in July, and that's when we developed all the products. We knew we wanted to create a virtual reality part, but we didn't know what it would look like. But then in August we came up with a story for the virtual reality, and then in mid-October we did the motion capture, and then in November/December we really sat down and worked on the virtual reality aspect every single day, but we were also producing all the products and designing the installation, as well as the research around it, so I would say it took about three months. We had to do voice recording, we had to create all of the characters, create look and feels for the environments, for the characters themselves, work with the character designer and artist, and then map all of that to the motion capture data. And then place it within the scenes, clean it up - it takes a lot of people to make that in such a short amount of time.

[00:20:47.22] SY: Yeah, because three months is really - it's not that long. Did you have a deadline you were trying to meet?

[00:20:52.25] CA: January 16th, we were to have the whole thing done and at Sundance, so we were quite -

[00:21:03.06] SY: Big moves

[00:21:03.06] CA: We were under a very tight deadline.

[00:21:06.14] SY: So what has the response been from people who've tried it?

[00:21:09.17] CA: Overwhelmingly positive. People are really excited to see black bodies and brown bodies - and specifically black women - in virtual reality. The response has been really positive, from not just black women, but from all cultures and races. And it's been an empowering project to work on, and when we've done any type of live, Facebook lives or Instagram lives, overwhelming the comments that we've received have been really, really positive.

[00:21:45.19] SY: What kinds of things do they say?

[00:21:46.17] CA: They're excited to see this kind of work happening, mostly that they are intellectually and conceptually blown away. I think a lot of us have gotten kind of - within the art world, it's become a bit limiting, and we want to have immersive and challenging experiences, but that isn't necessarily what's available to everybody, so I think NSAF is challenging us not only in a conceptual way, but also through a design aesthetic, through an intervention, through research and the overall goal of NSAF is not only to create a space for black and brown bodies to exist within the medium, but also to see if you can use virtual reality to increase exposure to the other and decrease prejudice and bias.

[00:22:44.12] SY: So, it totally makes sense to me that someone who looks like me gets really excited about this project, and I was very excited about this project for a lot of the reasons that you mentioned. But, what do you think gets people excited who are not black or woman or black women? What do they connect with?

[00:23:02.12] CA: Well, I think that there's a lot of inputs in this project. You can connect with it on a physical level when you walk into the salon. One of the best things about entering this space through the beauty industry is that you're not asked to understand unfamiliar controllers, or do something that you may not feel comfortable with. We're also looking to create products that are based in science and technology, and the needs of many humans. So it doesn't matter if you necessarily look in the mirror, and look like one of the characters. You've had an experience, may online or offline, where you've experienced a microaggression, and have had your safety compromised, or your surveillance compromised. We're all being watched and our activities are monitored, so when you create a textile that starts confusing computer vision and starts trolling the technology that's watching us, everyone can get on board. And then when you are somebody who loves other cultures and other communities and wants to see everyone thrive, and you can see that virtual reality can be a tool to actually decrease prejudice and bias, that's something that you can also stand behind.

[00:24:32.15] SY: Coming up - we dig into the technical details. Carmen breaks down the pieces of the project and shares the tools and processes her team used to build it. After this.

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[00:26:36.18] So, you mentioned that you have a number of different people work on different parts of this project, but you yourself are an engineer, you're technical. What was the technical part of this, what was the engineering part of this project?

[00:26:55.05] CA: There's a couple - a bunch of different parts, actually. And this was the first time that we'd created anything using a game engine, so we worked with Todd Bryant from NYU's motion capture studio, he kind of led us through the nuances of game design, and he was our technical director. But in terms of creating the assets, understanding what the behaviors of the elements within the game engine are going to be, how things are going to be sequenced, how things are going to react to you when you look around or move around in the space. How to create the assets, how to create animations within those environments and then export them and bring them into a game engine. So I have a background in structural and civil engineering, which then turned to development and programming when I was in an architecture and interaction design Master's course. So all of that education helped me create a overall methodology for how to develop and implement a very large-scale project, and how I could speak with a bunch of different engineers and designers and artists and create a physical and tangible experience that then could travel and become part of our social fabric.

[00:28:37.20] SY: Wow, that's a lot of tech. That's a lot of technology. How much of what was involved did you already know how to do, and how much did you have to figure out to make this vision come to life?

[00:28:50.20] CA: I would say, I had no idea about virtual reality.

[00:28:55.07] SY: Really!

[00:28:57.03] CA: Like most people, I was a super-skeptic, because the content really wasn't very thrilling, and inaccessible. I didn't have an Android, or how to use a Google cardboard or anything. But we met a woman, Nitzan Bartov, who was working in virtual reality, and she heard the story and was like yes, we have to do it this way. And so she had more experience and helped us and guided us through how we could create the vision space, and how we could incorporate virtual reality into the project. And Ece also has experience in virtual reality in terms of understanding the content, and we started understanding some of the rules of VR - how do you become and create a story for an active participant, rather than a passive viewer? So I would say when it comes to product design and installation design and scientific research, we understood how to do those things. But because of our super, super short time, we needed to work with other people. So that's where we worked with Ab Screenwear and Adam Harvey and were able to pull it off in the end.

[00:30:24.08] SY: So, between all of those people, and the fact that it's hardware, it's virtual reality, there's lots of components to it. It sounds very expensive. How expensive was it to pull together?

[00:30:35.17] CA: I would say, price your virtual reality piece above a hundred thousand dollars. Depending on how many computers you want, with headsets. Because it's very technical, it's done within a game engine, you need to use digital artists, you need to use programmers and developers, you need to work with sound engineers. We got a 75,000 grant from Intel, but that barely covered us paying all of the people who are involved. It is a really expensive medium, especially if you want to create a physical space where the VR happens within. So I would say, most virtual reality is done around a hundred and fifty - two hundred thousand dollars. There's stuff that can be fixed, there's stuff that can be made to a super, super high level, which is what you see in a lot of the demos. But conceptually, what we have is a lot deeper than what's available. So, our aesthetic, which may not have super personalized shaders, for example, we can get away with that. But to have a really, really high level of aesthetic and finish, you need to have a lot of money. You need to have post-processing, you need to have the asset development and animation, you need to have the motion capture. A huge team.

[00:32:26.24] SY: So, you mentioned a few times in our conversation that you are trying to push back against the fact that VR, for a lot of reasons, is very inaccessible. But a big part of it being inaccessible is that it's very expensive, so why design an exhibit that is also very inaccessible, right, in order for me to experience NSAF myself, I would have to go to one of these exhibits, a film festival - right, I can't bring that into my home? So, why go down that route?

[00:32:59.10] CA: Soon we will hopefully be porting this to mobile, so it can be a 360 experience and with a Gear VR, you'll be able to see it. But in general, we wanted to pick VR because there is a different bar to entry than with film. To pitch to major filmmakers our idea would have been much more difficult than to create a prototype and pitch it to a film festival that has sixteen or thirty VR projects, rather than a thousand films. Typically, Hyphen Labs uses emerging technology and new media. Virtual reality is something that's still being explored, the rules are still being made, and we as women of color can define those rules. We saw that there's a huge lack of representation of black and brown bodies that weren't stereotypical representations in the digital world. And we wanted to make sure that in virtual reality, those stories were being told, now at its inception, rather than waiting fifty or sixty years, when something like Hidden Figures comes out. Because virtual reality should represent reality It shouldn't just be devoid of culture and devoid of the people that we see every day.

[00:34:39.08] SY: So, I want to switch gears a bit and talk more about you. You recently graduated from - I guess, is it recently, it was like a year ago - graduated from the School of Poetic Computation. What was that experience like?

[00:34:52.22] CA: Hm, the School for Poetic Computation was a great experience. It was my first time in New York. It was really great because I got to meet a bunch of coders and artists and our teachers are super amazing and influential and experienced. And it was also really difficult. I consider myself a coder, but I'm not an engineer - I code for fun. I am going into a school where you're thrown into a mix with people who are super, super experienced in code, and then also super, super experienced in art, makes for a nice output, because you really start challenging some of the societal conventions through this new medium, which is code.

[00:35:47.09] SY: So, it was a twelve-week program, art and code, full time?

[00:35:54.26] CA: Yes.

[00:35:55.14] SY: And before you started that program, did you have much coding experience?

[00:35:59.27] CA: Before SFPC I had done a Master's program in interaction design at IAAC, which is the Institute for Advanced Architecture at Catalonia, and that's where I first started processing and Arduino. And that school we were also looking at parametric design and visual coding language, which is Grasshopper. And so I used code to create interactive and physical computing installations, but then when I went to SFPC, that's when I started working in C++ and Java and Python.

[00:36:44.29] SY: So, how was that shift from that Master's program to the bootcamp? What was the transition like for you?

[00:36:49.10] CA: It was good. It was really difficult. One of the hardest parts was learning many different languages at the same time -

[00:36:58.29] SY: Yeah, that's intense.

[00:37:00.27] CA: Sticking to one I think is a better approach, and saying ok, I'm just going to learn this language. Because it's like romantic languages - there's an underlying theme that makes all of the nuances a bit easier to understand, yet if you're trying to learn them all at the same time, it can be a bit complicated. I think that, like any experience, there are ups and downs. There were a lot of roadblocks, there were a lot of times where I would look at what I was making and it wasn't as computationally complex as other people's, but I really loved conceptual work. So, being able to use code to elicit concepts and make people feel something through simple implementations of language was something that I started to explore.

[00:38:03.25] SY: So now that you have built NSAF and you've taken it on tour and you're continuing to do so, is there anything that you would've done differently?

[00:38:15.11] CA: Probably made a simpler name.

[00:38:18.03] SY: (Laughs) It is a little hard to say. NSAF.

[00:38:19.16] CA: Yeah, NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism. I love that name, but it is very complicated. Is there anything that I would've done differently? I mean, I think that there's elements that we've learned as a team that we would take to the next project, but like any initial experience, this is what makes you grow. But, no I really, I love the project, and I love that it has taught me so much about women and culture and how to engage an audience and how to exhibit work. I think one thing that is a reality of artwork, whether it's using technology or not, is that you will be looked at as well as your work. So you and your work are going to be critiqued, and that's something that you risk. So I wouldn't change anything. I would add to it and I think that that's what we hope to do, is have opportunities to add more episodes and also create it in a way so you can experience it through different mediums.

[00:39:53.09] SY: So, you mentioned that when you are producing a piece of work, especially when it's something as creative and artistic and different as yours, your piece gets critiqued but you also get critiqued. Have you been critiqued?

[00:40:06.20] CA: Of course, yeah. People look at us and they come into the installation and they say, who did this for you? Who made this for you, who came up with this, or that, or whatever. It's hard for a lot of people to believe that we were the ones who came up with it, who created it, who developed and - yeah, we're challenging a lot of norms and that will always bring some type of critique.

[00:40:37.22] SY: And it sounds like you've been able to recover from that, if it's something to recover from, pretty quickly, because you're here, you're proud, you're going to keep going and build even more amazing things, so, yeah, I'm really excited for the future, for what other things are going to come out of Hyphen Labs.

[00:40:52.14] CA: Thank you! Yeah, me too. I'm super excited.

[00:40:55.17] SY: So now let's move on to some fill-in-the-blanks. Number one - worst advice I've ever received is?

[00:41:00.00] CA: The worst advice I've ever received is to be a specialist. I think that getting really, really good at one thing is very important, but I'm also really interested in so many things that I've kind of become a generalist and I think that's really helped in being able to communicate between myself and our group and different people and different audiences that we're trying to capture and captivate. And it's fun - it's never boring.

[00:41:39.16] SY: Absolutely, absolutely. Number two - my first coding project was about?

[00:41:42.19] CA: Ooh, my first coding project was with Ece, and we created this game called Ah, Aliens. And this was a game based on an alien ship that had entered into a minefield and somehow its little alien operators, there was some crash and they were spread all over the little 2D screen galaxy, and you had to move around a meteor storm in order to get them. And in order for you to move up and down as you automatically moved in the X direction, you had to change the pitch of your voice. So we wanted to figure out a way to annoy our classmates while we were making this, so you had to sing or hum or go aaaaaah in order to move your little alien ship and collect the aliens and try not to touch any of the meteors.

[00:42:44.28] SY: That sounds like fun, that sounds like a fun game to build. What did you make it in?

[00:42:47.24] CA: In Processing.

[00:42:49.11] SY: Ok, very cool. Number three - one thing I wish I knew when I first started to code is?

[00:42:54.18] CA: Ooh, that you have to practice. With everything it takes practice and the best way to get good at it is to open it every single day. And that it doesn't matter what you're making -

[00:43:10.20] SY: Yeah!

[00:43:11.09] CA: A lot of times, people who are starting to code are like, oh, I want to make this mind-blowing application, or experience, or whatever, and that comes with the experience. I think one other thing that is super valuable is exposure and being exposed to what people are doing and what people are making. But not being afraid to just trying things and making them and doing something - setting aside 45 minutes a day or an hour a day and making it a practice. When you're starting, give yourself some parameters. Make everything in black and white first. And when I say black and white, I mean something simple, then you can start adding the nuances and the colors and what makes it not only visibly beautiful but also conceptually inspiring or interesting.

[00:44:08.14] SY: Absolutely. Thank you so much, Carmen, for joining us. You want to say goodbye?

[00:44:12.00] CA: Bye, thank you!

[00:44:14.07] SY: And that's the end of our fifth episode of Season Two! Let me know what you think. Tweet me @CodeNewbies, or send me an email, hello@codenewbie.org. If you're in D.C. or Philly check out our local CodeNewbie meetup groups, we've got community coding sessions and awesome events every month, so if you're looking for real-life human interaction, look us up on meetup.com. For more info on the podcast, check out www.codenewbie.org/podcast, and join us for our weekly Twitter chats. We've got our Wednesday chats at 9 PM ET and our weekly coding check-in every Sunday at 2 PM ET. Thanks for listening, see you next week. (Music).

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