Project Contract

Mission Statement

The goal of this project is to build a detailed ethnographic exploration of Santa Rosa’s Glendi festival as it relates to Eastern Orthodox culture, both at a local and global level. I will dissect the festival’s complex cultural roots in connection to its location, the Saint Seraphim Eastern Orthodox church. I will conduct research starting from a broad cultural view (food traditions and geographical relations in Eastern Europe) to a narrower local view (Eastern European immigration to Sonoma County), and finally, to the festival itself — the tactile and sensual experience of food and dance under the spiritual setting of the church.

After pulling together these three levels of research, I will be able to make insightful conclusions based on data rather than try to force conclusions based on preconceived biases. Having been raised in the Orthodox tradition myself, I am personally interested in knowing the potential draw for my current generation and how Glendi may be actively working to keep an old tradition vitalized.

My website will thrive on minimalism and easy-to-find information. I like the WordPress theme I am using (Intergalactic) for this purpose. My subjects have already agreed to be on camera, so my plan is to conduct three interviews on camera, splice together a mini-documentary, and have that documentary play in the background as a full-screen header as someone enters the site. A large play button will allow it to play with color and sound (and with captions). In addition to that, I plan to use a timeline tool to outline Glendi’s history in parallel to Sonoma County’s history of Eastern European immigration.

The site architecture will be basic. A bibliography of all my research sources will fill one page. On another page, I will have my written research, which will be well designed and broken up with pictures for readability. The page will include a column of downloadable links in PDF, ePUB, MOBI, and MP3, so my research can be totally accessible by anyone. The homepage I hope to make glamorous and less research-intensive: a copy paragraph that describes the festival, an address, and dates & times. This won’t be just a piece of well-written, well-documented ethnographic research; it will be visited by an average person seeking information about the festival.

Project Tools

  • A camera, a lapel mic, lights, editing software, pictures, audio zoom and royalty-free music – For making a documentary. I have filmmaker friends who I plan to utilize as well to help me set up and get the cut together.
  • Royalty-free image sites
  • Timeline JS3 – For creating a timeline of Glendi history as well as Eastern European immigrations and large historical milestones as it relates to their cultural traditions.
  • Yoast SEO Plugin – Needs to be said. Writing metadata is important for site archiving. It’s like the importance of an abstract for a scholarly article.
  • Adobe InDesign – To layout and export my research in a variety of formats. I also have an audio recorder to read aloud my research for an MP3 version.

Milestone Schedule

  • Wednesday, March 9th – Have interview questions. Interviews scheduled.
  • Monday, March 21st – IRB Approval
  • Thursday, March 24nd – All interviews will be wrapped and video in post-production, audio begun transcription
  • Sunday, April 10th – Interviews transcribed as much as required. Timeline will have been built and deployed on site.
  • Sunday, April 17th – Video and transcriptions submitted to festival coordinators for approval.
  • Tuesday, April 19th – Annotated Bibliography posted to site.
  • Thursday, April 21st – Draft of site is built and ready for review.
  • Thursday, May 5th – Website complete with all details promised in the mission statement.

4 thoughts on “Project Contract

  1. Your project sounds well thought out. I appreciate the addition of captions! Have you gotten your IRB approvals yet? I am still waiting on mine. When does this festival begin? I have not heard of this one yet. Anyway, best of luck to you on your project!


    1. I heard from Cathy that you finally got your IRB approval. Congrats!

      I still don’t have my IRB approval, but the Spring Break has set my review back. My interviews are scheduled for this Tuesday, but I’ve been told I should get approval Monday if I remain on top of my email that day. I’m nervous, but I know everything will turn out fine.

      This festival doesn’t take place during the semester. It’s in September, and I only heard about it last year myself. Yet the concept immediately struck a cord with me.

      Anyway, best of luck on your project as well! I know it will be awesome.

  2. This sounds like an excellent plan and I’m really excited to see how this turns out. In general, your blog is incredible; it’s very well organized and remarkably professional. I could use your help whipping mine into shape!

    Best of luck,

    1. Thanks, Drew! That means a lot.

      I wouldn’t call it well organized; blogs themselves are chaotic. I did once work as a professional blogger though, and I have learned this: use lots of headers, numbered lists, and short paragraphs. In other words, blog posts should be skimmable.

      But your blog seems to do exactly what it needs to. They are just weekly updates, after all.

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