h5p – HTML5 Interactive Content Tool

What it is

H5P (https://h5p.org/) is an open source tool that enables IDs/developers to easily create interactive HTML5 activities – such as videos with embedded quizzes, drag and drops, memory games, and interactive presentations. With this tool, developers may create and edit their interactive content directly in the browser. HTML5 is an important alternative to Flash, as unlike Flash, HTML5 interactions will work on all devices – desktop, tablet, mobile, etc.

According to the H5P site, with H5P, “You can create interactive content by adding the H5P plugin to your WordPress, Moodle or Drupal site, or you can create content directly on H5P.org and embed it on your website.” (H5P.org, 2016) Since WordPress and Drupal are among the top three CMS platforms used across the web (Alex Ivanovs, 2015), H5P is a relevant tool for those working in educational technology.


If you are not using a CMS such as WordPress or Drupal, you can still create h5p content directly on the h5p demo site (https://h5p.org/node/add/h5p-content) and then grab the embed code from the learning object you create (see available learning object content types below). If you are using a CMS, you will need to download and install the h5p plugin within the admin area of your CMS. This will allow you to create the interactive content from inside your CMS

Alex Ivanovs. (2015). The 9 Most Popular Free Content Management Systems (CMS) 2015 – Colorlib.

Posted by: Diane Jones

Blue Garlic Rose – Oil Painting

Many times when I paint and draw, I stand back from the work in-progress and realize there is not enough contrast. In this quick study, I painted directly from observation, with the garlic placed outside in the full sun and tried to get a lot of contrast. The intense light allowed me to clearly see the form, and deliniate areas of shadow. This time I used thick oil paint, and painted wet into wet, allowing the colors to mix on the canvas. I think I used zinc white here, as well as french ultramine for the blue, magenta and/or permanent rose, and yellow light hue. The texture of the gessoed paper shows through to give a nice textured feel to the ground. This painting was inspired by the mostly monochromatic Diebenkorn still life paintings I saw at the Palm Springs Art Museum in January 2014. Medium: Water soluble oil paint on watercolor paper prepped with gesso.


Oil painting of garlic


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Degas as an animation influence

Dancer Adjusting Her Slipper

Dancer Adjusting Her Slipper, c. 1873, by Degas. Image from http://www.metmuseum.org

Edgar Degas’ artistic methods, expression, and subject matter align his work and process closely with that of contemporary 2D animators. Primarily interested in painting figurative scenes that capture contemporary Parisian life, Degas kept notebooks containing studies of hands, architectural features, mise-en-scene, ballet dancers, horses etc. that he would use as references for his paintings. According to art historian Linda Bolton, Degas “believed in committing a subject to memory through repeated drawing”, a technique that enabled him to complete works through informed imagination rather than direct observation; he was also one of the first artists to use a camera, which he used to obtain reference imagery. In studying his use of pastel and pastel over gouache, animators can learn mixed media techniques that convey expression of line and movement. Beyond technique, Degas’ innovative work dissolved boundaries for what is considered “appropriate” subject matter in art, and works like “After the Bath” and “At the Terrace of the Cafe” show that even the quotidian can be fascinating and emotive.

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Thoughts on the work of Tyrus Wong, Disney artist

Chinese-American painter, visual development artist, and illustrator, Tyrus Wong created a novel visual style for Disney’s stunning animated feature film, Bambi. The contribution of his unique artistic vision led directly to the success of the film, and helped expand the perception of animation as an art form. His watercolors and pastels combine an impressionistic vision of nature with traditional Chinese landscape painting and compositional techniques. I believe Wong’s artwork style is effective when applied to feature film background painting because it elicits the sensation of being in a specific environment (in this case the forest setting of Bambi) without forcing a detailed realism. This approach works well because it reflects, to some degree, an accurate representation of our own visual experience – as we scan our environment some areas are always out-of-focus due to depth-of-field and peripheral vision constraints. If detail is minimized, and the volumes reduced to an abstraction of light and shadow, the artist can achieve a look of ambiguity and mystery that is so attractive to the human mind.

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The influence of filmmaker/animator Miyazaki

Japanese director and animator Hayao Miyazaki’s films are inspiring illustrators and animators around the world. The importance of Miyazaki’s animation lies in his unparalleled ability to capture all the ephemeral qualities of life–whether illustrating the subtle atmospheric shift of fog rolling into a bay, or a heroine’s transformation in a moment of discovery and delight.  In a Studio Ghibli film, the action pauses to allow for delicate moments of wonder and grace. These scenes are conveyed with beauty– brilliant colors, unique perspectives, perfectly framed compositions and special dynamic effects, all contributing to a sense of drama. The broad themes of his films reflect a concern for the environment (films often include illustrations of man-made pollution and its effects), the tension between man and nature, discovery and transformation of the human spirit. Masterfully creating imaginary worlds, Miyazaki invites the viewer to share in the excitement of life’s myriad possibilities. Perhaps Miyazaki’s most important contribution to society is one that concerns the environment. Beyond the superb technical and artistic execution of the animation production, a Miyazaki film helps viewers, many of whom are children, appreciate our planet’s gifts and foster a sense of responsibility for preserving its fragile natural resources.