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Faculty presentation details new ways of telling stories

As a part of the weekly series hosted by the Innovative Media, Research and Commercialization (IMRC) Center, titled “Tuesdays at the IMRC,” faculty members brought Instructional Designer Sheridan Kelley Adams to speak about her work as an artist.

“One of the things that drives me and my work are stories,” Adams said. “It is really all about the stories and about the people.”

Adams explained she was amused by the stories from her childhood, from the way her parents met to how she remembered her first day of school. Her family is from Downeast Maine and she attended school at Bowdoin College where she received her undergraduate degree in European history. Later she enrolled in graduate school at Savannah College of Art & Design, graduating with a masters of fine arts (MFA) degree in painting.

“It’s a delight to have [Sheridan Kelley Adams] present,” Nate Aldrich, adjunct assistant professor of intermedia at the University of Maine, said.

Adams displayed many of her pieces of art and spoke about how they conveyed a narrative, including an adult coloring book she made titled, “A Cautionary Tale,” and a video installation titled, “18 Million Minutes (I’m Waiting).”

Much of Adams’ work has involved video. She became inspired by film production after a scene from the 1997 film adaptation, “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” was filmed in her residence in Savannah, Ga. Since then she has used film in many of her projects and has recently completed her first feature-length movie script.

Adams began her work with media before graduate school when she accepted a job at Polaroid Corporation in 1994 — when they still produced instant film and film cameras — as an electronic imaging specialist.

Early on in her graduate art education, Adams explained that her work was plagued with poor drawings and paintings.

“I threw all 90 of my first semester pieces away,” she said. A number of those pieces were shown at the event.

“If you don’t make bad work, you’re not going to make any good work,” Adams said.

Adams currently teaches in the new media, intermedia and art departments at UMaine. Additionally, she works as a media and film production professional at Knife Edge Productions, LLC, an independent theatre and film production company based in New York City.

The lecture took place in IMRC’s Adaptive Performance and Production Environment, a large space used for film and sound production. The IMRC opened in 2013 and has since been dedicated to “the creation of innovative content design and delivery,” according to the center’s website.

The next weekly event hosted by the IMRC will be Graduate Student Reviews on Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. The program will preview the work in progress of first and second-year intermedia MFA students. All presentations are free and open to the public.

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