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Careers in Translation and Interpreting Event, Aston University, 17.12.14

aston university

  On 17th December, with my translation (BA) colleague, Isabelle, from Cardiff University, we headed up the train tracks to the Midlands to the Careers event at Aston University. http://translation.blogs.aston.ac.uk/2014/11/18/careers-in-translation-and-interpreting/ The day’s talks promised to offer multiple perspectives on the different kinds of jobs translators and interpreters can have. The pre-event coffee room was packed and attendance was good, our namebadges reflecting attendance from across the country – many undergraduates and also school students plus a rare few older participants. The event was sponsored by the Routes Into Languages program. Head of Aston’s language department, Christina Schäffner kicked off proceedings with a short welcome and introduction and the event was rapidly underway. We would be looking at different areas of work plus ways of getting started in the profession. The first hour introduced three different professional interpreters who vary in their employment. Rekha Narula gave a great presentation on working in the public service interpreting sector. The attitude of the interpreter and the professional skills they require was very interesting. There are ethical dilemmas and the rather individual, lonely work of the public service interpreter seemed very challenging. The work sounded very rewarding and valuable to society. Cindy Schaller, a French woman interpreter, who spoke almost perfect English with hardly a detectable accent at all, spoke about conference interpreting and also how volunteering could provide valuable experience for newcomers to the industry. Cindy had done a work experience placement at the UN in Vienna and had toured Africa and a variety of other destinations, working in the voluntary sector. Cindy discussed the skills she used as a conference interpreter, from chucotage, to booth work at various levels of comfort and technology. Cindy analysed the business skills that we would require – from accounting to building a client base, to billing and working as an individual. Cindy provided some useful web references for opportunities in the voluntary sector: http://klimaforum.org http://viacampesina.org/en/ http://fsm2011.org/en/ http://www.babels.org Maisy Greenwood was next on the agenda and she had an amazing adventure tale to share with us. At university she had studied arabic in addition to Spanish and French. A job landed at her feet (or rather she had to put herself in the right place at the right time). She was recruited as an interpreter for a Saudi television documentary. For two months Maisy travelled across South America, acting as a Spanish>English>Arabic interpreter. The skills she amassed…

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Taking Stock of Subtitling – Jorge Díaz-Cintas (UCL) – Guest Lecture Cardiff University MLANG 18.11.14

Jorge Díaz-Cintas

Sponsored by Tesserae, Journal of Iberian and Latin American Studies, this event at Cardiff University brought in world expert in subtitling, Jorge Díaz-Cintas, from UCL, for a guest lecture on ‘Taking Stock In Subtitling’. Subtitling is a growing area of research and also a growing employment area for Translation graduates. The lecture was well-supported by undergraduate and post-graduate students, many department teachers, the professional translator community and also members of the public. Jorge led out by defining subtitling as a form of REWRITING as opposed to the REVOICING of dubbing, interpreting, voiceover and narration. Subtitling has a very significant role in accessibility, with subtitles being made for disabled people, be they hard of hearing / deaf or partially-sighted / blind (Audio description & Audio subtitling) The rapid development in technology in recent years has seen a huge growth in the need for subtitling. Its diversity and range has multiplied with the advent of new technologies and has moved from television to the internet. The volunteer community of subtitlers translate and adapt uploaded videos on youtube and other internet video platforms, sometimes, as in the case of new TV series, beating the professional subtitling community in the race for reaching an audience. These new subtitlers can redefine norms in the world of translation, for example, usurping traditional translation methods for Mandarin or Arabic and using trendy vernacular tongues. Jorge demonstrated some of the professional subtitling computer tools such as Wincaps, and talked of the complexity of organising multiple subtitling in a range of foreign languages. If ‘spotting’ (where subtitles come in and fade out in a video frame) is made uniform across all subtitling languages, what sort of problems can arise? A German translator needs far more space in their translation than other European languages as their words are longer and also the sentences are structured with the verb part-separating to feature at the end of a sentence. A subtitler has to take into account of average reading speeds and faces the challenge of condensing material due to space restraints. Jorge showed how the software aids in these factors. For those interested in subtitling and getting involved in this profession, a number of websites were mentioned: http://esist.org/ http://avteurope.eu/ http://subtitlers.org.uk/ http://clipfair.net http://videolectures.net http://ted.com http://www.eu-bridge.eu/ http://www.sumat-project.eu/ Some of these sites are at the cutting edge of subtitling technology, incorporating the latest developments in the field of machine translation. Jorge left us to ponder…

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Positioning Translators – Theo Hermans (UCL) – Guest Lecture Cardiff University MLANG 29.10.14

theo hermans

  Theo Hermans is from University College London (UCL) and works in translation studies and in modern and Renaissance Dutch literature. His guest lecture at Cardiff University was to develop his ideas in his recent ‘Positioning Translators’ paper. Theo edits the series Translation Theories Explored published by Routledge. This was my first extra-curricular lecture at Cardiff University. We prepared for the lecture with a seminar in the afternoon run by my personal tutor, Dorota Goluch. I’d read Theo’s paper and it had been a little profound for me to take it all in yet after Dorota’s seminar I was feeling a little more confident in understanding the idea of ‘Positioning Translators’ and was ready fro the main event. Theo Hermans entered a jam-packed MLANG lecture theatre and under the light of recording video cameras, got his talk underway. Many of the ideas and examples were taken straight from the paper, but Theo had an excellent way of simplifying the ideas and making them more accessible in the lecture than they were in the plain text of the paper. He started with the example of Antjie Krog, a SoutH African translator who was deeply emotionally affected by his interpreting work for the South African Truth And Reconciliation commission as it sought to uncover the wrongs of apartheid. He talked of First Person Displacement – the way in which a translator or interpreter can get caught up in their work. Antjie Krog found that by referring to the unjust crimes as he interpreting them by using the first-person, he could not separate his won identity from the dark sins perpetuated by the more evil elements of the apartheid instigators. The lecture went on to develop how translators themselves are affected in their work and the various techniques they use to impose themselves on the reader. I think one of the biggest ideas that embedded in my mind from Theo’s talk was the nature of Irony in Translation. In a translated work there is not just a single voice talking. The author has his voice but the translator, in his work, has his own voice represented in the work. There is therefore two voices present, struggling against each other – the element of irony where the nature of what is being said has a duality. Different translators cope with this irony in different ways. Is the perfect translation where the translator is invisible? The…

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ITI Cymru Wales Event Cardiff University 08.11.14

iti cymru wales

  I received an invite on my university email address to a free event at Cardiff University, arranged by ITI Cymru Wales ( @ITICymruWales ). The Saturday workshop was to be focussed on technology in translation and I felt it would be an ideal opportunity to get to meet some actual working translators in Wales plus to learn about a specific subject area within translation that I find appealing. If I complete my degree successfully and actually become a professional translator, the chances are that I will be building on existing tech skills and working in some way in the tech side of translation. The workshop was to focus on developing your skills as a translator in the digital environment – we would learn how to use some useful translation tools and think about working with the web as a tool. I packed my lunchbox and headed out on the train to Cardiff on a wet Autumn International rugby day. There was a good crowd of about 40 people, filling up the lecture theatre at Cardiff University’s Centre For Lifelong Learning. It was to be the ITI Cymru Wales’ biggest event to date. The costs to attend the convention were free which was an added bonus. I was quite nervous, not knowing anybody there as it was my first foray into the world of professional translators. I felt, as a first year student, that I was a bit out of place and had general newbie nerves. The first talk was by Elvana Moore ( @MoreAlbanian ) on the use of the ProZ.com website / forum for translators and interpreters.   I’d set up a profile on ProZ.com already but haven’t used the site as yet. Elvana gave us a good hour and a half’s worth of instruction on how to best use this vast translation-specific website. It could be the biggest source of our work as translators and was an invaluable resource. She explored the intricacies on how to best set up your profile and demonstrated the key features of the site. I hadn’t previously understood the Kudoz system on ProZ and can see what a great way it is of exchanging ideas on translation and a great way of building your profile and becoming a real part of the international translator community. Elvana stressed that she was in no way a salesperson for ProZ but equally I think she was able…

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Blast From The Past: The Sandwich Show featuring Wez G

Here is a rare bit of video footage of DJ Wez G in action (back in 2010)… Filmed for the legendary (now defunct) Cardiff radio programme, The Sandwich Show, DJ Wez G lays down some grooves in the company of crazy hosts, Flapsandwich (http://sicknote.tv) and Ninjah… The show’s theme is mental health. ‘Nuthouse’ features a crazy journey to the house of Paul and Al (RIP) where the event took place, after the regular Sandwich Show studio was unavailable… Hannibal the Cannibal masks and mink scarves were the order of the day and Ninjah’s journey to the off license to stock up on beers was a journey itself! I thoroughly enjoyed the evening and long after the broadcast finished we continued to party the night away… I hope you enjoy the video!

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Flyers


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Some event flyers from Wez G’s DJ work over the years.

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