Week 2 – Learning Project

Image preview
Making some progress!

Before you watch (I can’t believe I am making this disclaimer): I didn’t anticipate my dogs
being SUCH A BARRIER to my video making but that is proving to be the case. I love them but it is really tricky to edit them visual and audibly from my recordings. So, if you hear any strange sounds in my video this week and any other week for that matter, it is the sound of two German Shorthaired Pointers playing together. GSPs make a very unique sound LOL!


Now, back to the business at hand…

Successes this week:

  • I’ve memorized all of the chords that my instructor has given me including: G major, C major, D major, A major, E major, A minor and E minor.
  • I’ve improved a lot with chord switching this week which means switching quickly and accurately between different chords. One of the “workouts” on Yousician is a chord trainer where you need to play a minimum of 12 chords in 45 seconds to receive 1 silver star (the lowest score). This might not sound like a lot but it is really tricky when you are a beginner. I did these chord training workouts upwards of 30 times before receiving 1 silver star. I still have a lot more work to do but for now I’m counting this as a win.
  • I practiced a LOT which I am really proud of. When I was a kid, my parents often forced me to practice piano and I was worried that I would be keen at the beginning of learning to play guitar but practice less frequently as time went on. So far, this hasn’t been the case and since this is a self-selected “passion-project“, I hope I stick with the practicing.
  • With all the practicing I did, I mastered many beginner songs on Yousician and achieved many of the skill training on Level 1 and 2.
  • I figured out how to do “picture-in-picture” and “video overlay” on iMovie thanks to some tips from Amanda and this tutorial.

Challenges this week:

  • Some chords are still tricky for me to play. It seems I always have a dead note on C major and D major chords. My face-to-face instructor said to play the chord and if it sounds funny, pluck each string individually until you figure out the dead chord. You will see me doing this in the video. I’ve also tried adjusting my thumb and hand positioning and tried lifting my fingers higher off of the fretboard. Sometimes I get it right, sometimes I don’t. I’m inconsistent. If you have any tips or tricks, please comment below.
  • While I am getting better at chord switching, you can see me in the video looking back and forth between the string I am strumming and my finger placement on the strings/frets. I have gotten a lot faster at making and switching chords but I still think I’m pretty slow.
  • While I have been practicing a lot, I have not been great at recording myself through the week. I always sit down to practice for enjoyment and procrastinate the recording part. I want to get better at showing my progression throughout the week by recording more frequently rather than doing a cumulative review of the week by recording everything I work on in the same day.
  • Tech troubles: I was having a hard time thinking about how I would show myself placing the guitar and following along with the Yousician app on my iPad screen. What I ended up doing was recording myself playing the guitar using my iPhone and iPhone tripod and simultaneously using the screen recording tool on my iPad to record what was happening on the app. This seemed like a great idea in the beginning but when it came to editing, I had two separate videos. When I needed to delete parts out of either video (dog noises mainly!!), it became really tricky to align the videos again so that my playing matched the recording on Yousician. In some parts of my weekly update I am happy with how the videos align but in other parts it is obvious that the timing is off.

What’s Next:

  • Next week I plan to continue work on the new skills my face-to-face instructor gives me and explore some of the other online resources that I’ve found.
  • PLUS! Brad and I met up on Zoom earlier this week and he shared some great resources that I will be working with. He’s all about that bass when it comes to learning guitar!
  • Stay tuned! As always, your comments and suggestions are welcomed!

2 thoughts on “Week 2 – Learning Project

  1. Nice work this week! Dogs and babies 😂 always want attention! I’m not much of a guitar player, but when I teach the basics to my students, we really focus on curved fingers so you don’t accidentally rest part of the finger on the string. Also adjusting your thumb position, like you said. The video looks great- very smart idea to show your playing and the iPad screen at the same time. I am curious if WeVideo has that feature!

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