Traditional vs. Digital - School Life (Art and Music) (pt3)

January 23, 2018

 

 

As the world advances, more and more everyday objects from the past have been digitalised. The lives of people in the modern world are far different from the lives of people before such inventions even existed, and the development in technology is still progressing. Most of the time, the aim of this is to make certain tasks or things more easily achievable, but some might not agree and think otherwise. At school, many ways of teaching have changed due to the advance of technology, and these small adjustments can be spotted almost in every subject.

 

For example, digitalisation is sometimes useful in Art. Whether you scan a piece of work or start from scratch completely, drawing on a tablet of some sort can give you many advantages: manipulation tools, easily erasable, multiple layers, etc. There are many useful tools in drawing softwares, such as the 'fill' tool, which automatically fills in a certain space for you, and the blend tool, which blends two colours together.  Moving selected parts of your sketch around is also accomplishable, which makes things easier since you don't need to erase any part of your sketch and then draw it again on the correct spot. The 'undo' tool is always useful because if you make a mistake you can always go back. The same goes for the 'redo' tool. The 'eraser' tool is also more efficient since you wouldn't need to worry about leaving any mark and could get rid of any part of the drawing you don't like (even pen). There is also the option to create multiple layers. This would mean that you could always get back the things you covered up before, since you're on a different layer you would still have the drawing. You could also avoid accidentally erasing another part of the drawing when you're doing corrections, which is sometimes very useful. These things couldn't be accomplished by using the traditional method of drawing, which makes these advancements in technology useful.

 

However, drawing using tablets or other electronic devices is not always that practical. Drawing digitally would mean that it is a lot easier to duplicate the artwork. If you are drawing something physically instead of online, it would be almost impossible to make an exact copy, which makes it unique and special. It is also a different experience because your 'pen' and 'paper' is different. For example, the screens of tablets are much smoother than actual paper. Some people might find it easier to just use a pencil and paper to draw, while some think otherwise. There are also a lot of different textures you could make with different materials, which may not be as easily accomplished in digital art. Furthermore, even if you do find way to get those patterns they might not have the same effect on the drawing. Therefore, it is equally important to work with physical materials instead of the futurist digital ones.

 

Another subject that had been heavily influenced by technology is music. In music, you could now use virtual band/orchestras to play music, so you don't have to even learn an instrument to create a tune. Many programs allow you to write songs and play it automatically. Thanks to technology, you can even communicate overseas and put together different parts of a tune from around the world to compose one song. This piece of technology is very useful to those who like creating music, but are unable to or had not yet learnt an instrument. Likewise, some programs are created to teach people about this subject, anything from playing an instrument to common knowledge for musicians. In some programs, such as Garage Band, you could automatically generate chords, which saves some work. Uploading and finding music is made much easier when using music software, which allows people to listen to music or upload their own. All these things make learning or creating music much more accessible and possibly even fun.

 

On the other hand, traditional ways of music are just as useful: playing in a real band/orchestra requires a lot more time on practising, and seems a lot more profession. Sometimes, the sound of certain instrument might not be as good when it is virtually made in a program. For example, when playing on a real piano, the strength that you put on the keys could affect the outcome of the sound. This is not as easily accomplished on a computer, since some softwares don’t have this feature. Live performances also sound different to a recording of one; let's face it, most of the time people prefer to listen to live concerts over to recorded ones. Furthermore, many traditional songs and dances are a big part of a culture, which usually have a unique style that makes it recognisable. This makes traditional music significant.

 

Traditional and digital things all have their own advantages and disadvantages, so how useful either one of them is would be based on the situation. Although new technology is sometimes made to make certain tasks easier or certain items more useful, sometime sticking with the old ways of doing things might be the best possible solution. Therefore, both are equally important and useful.

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