Typographic Experimenting

February 22, 2011 § Leave a comment

Here are a few of the typographic experiments we have carried out to date.

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Flaneur Kits Go!

February 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

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Today we assembled the Flaneur Kits – now that our cameras had finally come in! Each kit contains a disposable camera, a set of instructions and a little notebook to record exposures. There are 21 points, and 27 exposures – to allow a little breathing room in case a re-take is needed, and to allow our Flaneur team to have a little artistic freedom.

The points in the kit include instructions such as:

– Step outside your door, and find a texture that reflects your mood.

– Find a building that you would usually ignore (or even find awful) and find something interesting about it

– Something you hope never changes

– A place you like to pause

– A metaphorical or physical barrier in your day

We’ve assembled 20 kits and asked friends, family, coworkers and peers to be part of our flaneur team. We asked people with different lifestyles, and who live all across the greater Vancouver area, who we felt would be able to give us an interesting and unique perspective on Vancouver. Michele and I are also out there with the cameras (too fun not to take part!) and are giving everyone the week to shoot their roll.

Can’t wait to see the results!

Moving into form

February 20, 2011 § Leave a comment

We have begun to start putting together some ideas about the overall aesthetic for the catalogue. We started by doing some mood boards with type. I guess you could say we are wanting to move away from any Vancouver cliche’d aesthetic and are looking at more experimental publications. We are still looking however for the type and aesthetic to be inspired by architecture and topologies but with a contemporary art and design twist.

What would one part of Vancouver say to another?

February 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

 

Jen and I completed another project this weekend. We travelled around with our postcards and got people to fill them in. What became clear was an interesting dialogue that was beginning to develop.

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Making Connections

February 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

A little exercise in class today: given some random words, brainstorm and make connections between them and your project.

Groundhog: sensitive/curious/ground’s eye view/creates tunnels/networks/hides

Rib Cage: underlying, unseen, supportive structure/parts of a whole/flexible

Ashes: life cycle/change/dark/burnt/renewal

Toxic Waste: by product of society/pollution/man-made/unnatural/destructive/changes landscapes/counteractive to human health

Coffee: bitter/alertness/social/public & private ritual/imported/aromatic

Ice: cold/slippery/hard/dangerous/slows movement/impermanent state

Dust: covers surfaces/dry/settles, sign of staying put/clouds

Bible: code to live by/narrative/mythology/

Drum: resonates/communication/rythm/patterns

Fog: visibility/navigation/grey (Vancouver!)/slows pace

–whew! pretty early in the morning to do some random brainstormin’!

Micro Projecting for Qualitative Data

February 16, 2011 § Leave a comment

The focus for the first half to this project is inspired by the approach to qualitative data gathering used by Candy Chang and Broken City labs mentioned in our previous posts.  We want to gather data on the individual experiences of users of a space (in this case city inhabitants) and use it as source data to map a city, in this case Vancouver, in a new way. Therefore the focus right now is brainstorming mechanisms to collect qualitative data. This qualitative data will be about capturing the dialogue that occurs between the physicality of space and users. As suggested by some of our research see here contemporary architects are re-examining the urban flaneur for its potential value as a tool for analysis.
Our design opportunity here is serving as the interface between experiential data and urban planner. Here are some of the micro projects we plan to carry out:

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Flaneurs toolkits– We are providing a variety of people with analogue disposible camera, notebook and a pretty open ended series of shots to gather based loosely on our categories. The participants will mark down there thoughts about each picture in the notebook with corresponding exposure and hand it back. We are using analogue to take it away from becoming a photographic exercise and they can not self edit.
Pixelation – We are going to map our own routes to and from work to map the colour palettes of  our shifting landscapes. This will be achieved by photographing sections and translating them into abstracted pixelated images
Postcards-Installing ourselves in cafe around the city for a day or so we plan to hand out your standard tourist postcards to passersby. The back of each will be started with “Dear Urban Planner, Sitting in a cafe in_________ observing __________ . I really love this city for its ___________. This neighborhood I am in for_______________ because _________________ I think it because it allows me to ___________________. (this is not finalised)
Wish you were here________________
Map – We are going to do some kind of focus group and get people to draw on tracing paper over Vancouver – we have not fully flushed this idea out yet.

Exhibition idea….

February 14, 2011 § Leave a comment

In thinking about spaces, and thinking ahead, it seemed as though we should explore the space of the grad show itself as a platform to speak about how people interact with their surroundings. What if there was a way to track how people experience the grad show space? If the amount of time spent in a given place might be assumed to indicate that place’s “interestingness”, then can we use the quantitative data of number of people, movement, and duration to express an experience in real-time?

Of course, there are many reasons why one might linger in a particular place during an exhibition – maybe they got caught up in conversation about something, maybe there was a group of people prohibiting their movement, maybe that’s where the bar is. But simply in order to demonstrate a type of hidden data, we must simplify.

We came up with this idea by challenging ourselves to think big and beyond what we think we can achieve – and now, we have to ask what we can get for 10 bucks? This is beyond either of our technological capabilites, so we turned to Simon Overstall of the IDS labs for help. He has been crucial in guiding us along so far. After describing what we wanted the end result to look like, he suggested some options including RFID tagging, which, while probably the most accurate way to do motion tracking, was also way too expensive to be an option. Luckily, Bobbi Koziuk, another technician in the lab, discovered a little box of cameras, just waiting there for us! So onto another option…..

How it would work: We mount the little cameras up on the ceiling throughout the design areas and hallways. These cameras then feed real-time motion images to a central computer (or computers) which would then crunch the data and project out an infographic onto the wall. Simple, right?

So at this stage we’re just waiting on the IT department to get back to us about using the ECU wireless network, so that we can set these babies up and test them. Fingers crossed!

 

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