maps

I know that ‘mapping’ is a bit of a thing, and could likely be ground down in overuse, but today i did an impromptu project with some of the residents about mapping.

I need to make some maps for this saturday’s sound art walk, so i got some of the residents to help me make them.

They told me where to mark some of the significant aspects of the estate, especially the car park area above The Underground.

I was particularly impressed with Sean (9) –  his recall and attention to detail was amazing.
He and his mum spend a lot of time in the community garden, so he must have some really visceral memories of the place. In fact, he was quite passionate about it – correcting me and filling in parts himself. It was amazing to watch.

I also found it quite enlightning how Jessica (9) visualised the area with a bit of perspective – not an abstracted form. She loves art, and can’t read very well.

Dawn and Dolphin are in their 60s and have lived in the area a long time. Dawn was quite concerned about letting people know about toilets – concerned for people’s safety and comfort, and was happy to include whole sections as ‘the back of the high rise’.

Dolphin has a boxing ring and was still grieving the death of Joe Frazier. He did a great job of being able to describe the area to me, and of course talked about the ring.

Dawn's Mapweb

Dolphin's Mapweb

Sean's Mapweb

Jessica's Mapweb

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summer of design books

ben from noisy decent graphics has opened up his blog for reviews of design books.

it’s summer there right now so of course everyone in london has plenty of time to read the stack of books that gather on the bedside table, while gettings tans and sipping pimms.

i don’t have such luxury, but i stumbled on a cool book the other day that i wanted to review anyway, so thought i would do so here and for ben’s books (also a great bookstore in bentleigh, in case you were asking).


Designed Maps
Cynthia Brewer

i’ve become a bit of a fan of maps. since i did some travel around europe last year i realised that there’s a definite art to developing that little valuable set of codes and indicators that will (when it comes to tourist maps) be mauled like it’s a baby’s dummy (pacifier for those NYC peeps). so when i walked into my trust RMIT library and saw this on the ‘just released’ shelf, i thought i’d check it.

and actually it’s pretty cool! it’s for GIS Users, which I’m not. and it is probably the geekiest thing i have ever thought was cool (aside from twitter). But i did enjoy checking out the difference between an infrastructure map, topographical map, tourist map and geo-political map. i know, it’s kind of obvious, but when they’re all together, and when each of those ones has a variety of scale, colour, type, etc, it’s quite an interesting lesson in design and visual heirarchy:




Book deets:
Title: Designed maps : a sourcebook for GIS users / Cynthia A. Brewer.
Author: Brewer, Cynthia A., 1960-
Item ID: 31259009136388
Call #: 526.0285 B758
Publisher: ESRI Press.

OK, so it may not be the next hit wonder on the ‘must read’ list, but if you’re into design, urban design, drawing, mapping, place – whatever, then it’s an interestingl little book to check out.

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