I’m posting this for anyone who is curious to watch an English-ASL interpreter at work on stage with a speaker. Dr. Johanna Blackley and the Honors Forum coordinator at Mesa Community College were kind enough to let me share this video my interpreting partner took of me with my phone. I asked my team to record it so I could use it for self-assessment in an interpreting studies class I was taking in graduate school. I’m sharing it because I think it’s important for interpreters to see real examples of other interpreters’ work — the hits and misses in this imperfect thing we call interpretation. Most of this sample is dialogue during the Q & A portion at the end of Johanna’s lecture.
Oh, and one more thing — there was no Deaf consumer in the audience that I knew of. We were providing access for anyone who chose to show up, and there might have been someone there I was unaware of, but I had to interpret as if someone were relying on me for access to the event. My professor in the interpreting studies course I mentioned above advised us always to imagine a specific consumer, so I was imagining a client who was a fashion design student who knew something about the topic and was comfortable with both ASL and English. A more authentic interpreting sample would show an interpreter directing the target text at specific consumers. Nevertheless, I hope you can learn something about English-to-ASL interpreting from watching this sample.
P.S. I apologize that this isn’t closed-captioned. It would take several hours that I don’t have these days to transcribe the English dialogue and synchronize it with the speech. I hope you understand.
I just realized I never blogged this! Did this last month on Google+ to help them test their Hangout On Air technology with other people using sign language.
As an assignment for the Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies at Western Oregon University (WOU MAIS), I completed a videotaping of myself spending about 20 minutes interpreting a source text I had not heard before: Simon Lewis’s talk “Don’t take consciousness for granted,” at TED.com. There is an interactive transcript that you can view by following the link.
I would like to think this is not a sample of my best work, but I am humble enough to accept that there are times when this is the best I can do with such an unfamiliar topic and fast pace.
Here are some facts about me and the circumstances under which this sample was recorded:
- The hearing speaker appears to be a 50-something-year-old white male from a foreign English-speaking country (South America, Australia, England?).
- I am a 44-year-old white American male.
- I began learning ASL when I was 21.
- I have 21 years’ experience as an interpreter and transliterator.
- I earned my RID CI in 1998 and my CI in 1999.
- I earned my RID NIC Master in 2010.
- I earned a Bachelor’s degree in 2003.
- This is my first recorded video assignment for the Master of Arts in Interpreting Studies at Western Oregon University (the WOU MAIS).
- I recorded this in my own home using a tripod, camera that records HD video, laptop connected to TED.com, amplified computer speakers connected to the laptop, and both artificial and natural lighting. I set up all of the technology myself just before recording this sample.
- I had no audience for this recording; all that was in front of me was my camera and my home.
- My only preparation was reading the “About this Talk” and “About the Speaker” paragraphs before interpreting/transliterating the video.
- I planned before I recorded this to publish it on YouTube for a global audience, even though this was not a requirement of the course assignment.
I post this more for educational purposes than as a part of a résumé, but if a potential employer were to judge my work based on this sample, I would not discourage them from doing so . As I said, this may not be my best, but it is an acceptable sample of current work considering the circumstance listed above.
Do you have any questions about any part of this video or the making of it? If so, please leave a comment.
Here is a sample of my platform interpreting. Had the opportunity to interpret the grand opening ceremonies of Arizona State University (ASU)’s downtown campus five years ago in Phoenix, Arizona. It took me a while to post this, but now I “have the technology,” so here it is.