R.D.G. Pecha Kucha Video

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Learning Log

This past weekend I went to a different bar in the East end district. The bar wasn’t affiliated with RDG Inc. or any of the spaces I am comparing in my visual images project. It was interesting to see how different bar owners utilize their spaces, and how this impacts the image they portray to customers. This particualr bar was separated from the main “drag” of bars; which permited a different “feel’ or different atmosphere. It also limited the diversity of customers, because this specific bar attracted a certain clientel. I studied the entrances and exits, the location of bathrooms, and the area where alcohol was being served to consumers. The bathrooms were near the entrances and exits; which differed from the bars I am doing my report on. Bathrooms in bars tend to be an area of confusion at times, and can also be a plave of controvery in this particular atmosphere. Locating the bathrooms near the entrances and exits allow bar owners to place additional staff members near these locations, and also allows individuals to be removed from the bar easily.

I found this strategic location of the bathrooms and exits to be much more efficient than other bars in the East end district. The bar was also positioned in a much more efficient way for collecting door sales. Typically, bars have outdoor locations for smokes and customers seeking relief from the chaos inside the establishment. Consumers were funneled through one door to the inside of the bar. Once inside the bar, they had the option of traveling to the area where alcohol is served, or could head to an outdoor lounge area. Fences surrounded the outdoor location. I estimate that these fences were built to be at, or around siz feet in height. If a customer wanted to jump the fence, he or she could do it, but the fence was clearly constructed to limit thoughts of this entry. Because of these fences, the bar owners don’t have to position additional staff members around these areas to limit underage or “non-payiny” entry. This reduces liability on the owners, and limits the amount of police force required to patrol the area.

The actual location and space where alcohol was served lacked efficiency. An entire side of the bar faced the wall; therefore, the amount of alcohol being served is restricted, and customers are limited in their opportunities to reach service. Bars in other areas of the East end district position their “serving stations” much more strategically to allow the greatest customer access to service and allow the greatest potential alcohol to be served. Unlike other bars, the owner was conscious of the floor space available to customers, but didn’t establish capacity has his main objective. There was a combination of floor space and seating, which created a very relaxed environment for a social gathering. The owner utilized booths on the outsides of the building, and used free-standing chairs to seat different customers. This technique is different from the bars I am studying in my report.

I believe this bar owner understands his strenghts and weaknessess; thus, he has attempted to incorporate the many different aspects of bar-life into one location. The bars I am studying offer one venue, or one atmosphere, because they can “get away” with this technique in this location. The street of bars I am studying has five different bars that all offer different atmospheres for the customer. If the consumers choose to entertain themselves in a different way, they have the option of walking around this street and selecting a bar that accomodates to their interests.

The bar that I traveled to this past Saturday didn’t have this luxury, but worked to incorporate many different environments of bar-life into one setting. This is difficult to accomplish, but judging the amount of customers on that given night, he or she has had recent success. I found these comparisons to be useful as I prepare my own visual project and presentation.

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Reading Response

This past week’s readings were very interesting and guided my understanding of the visual project we are currently working on. The first reading discussed the different interpretations delivered by architecture. A building or wall can have different meanings for different people; which made me think about how people would respond to the images in my project. In my visuals, some members of the class may have personal experiences connected to the image, or have some type of familiarity with the image. I am working to create one interpretation of the image, so the notes from this article will be helpful.

The article presented different images which gave the audience an opportunity to respond based on their personal opinion, but also compare their response to the author’s conclusions. For example, the Berlin wall has different meanings for people all around the world. For many, the wall represents communism or the Cold war; however, an individual could have a personal experience that triggers an idea or thought when the Berlin wall is introduced. As a kid, my Father’s office building had an exhibit that featured a section of the Berlin wall. Regardless of the significance, whenever the Berlin wall is discussed I resort to these images and ideas.

In my project, I will need to be careful in staying away from any ideas or thoughts that trigger personal experiences.

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Learning Log

This weekend will be important for my project because I only have one night to take pictures that I can compare to the images I took ealrier in the week. These images on saturday night will be important because these pictures can be interpreted in many different ways, but I want to ensure that an audience is able to capture the message I am looking to expose.

There is a particular space on the street where homeless men congregate. They are given various tasks throughout the night by “superior” individuals in this environment. These assignments precede their true role for the night. These men will go through each and every garbage can at the end of the night to separate the returnable items from actual trash. In return for the 5 cents for each returned can or bottle, they are expected to clean all the paved surfaces from debris and other garbage. This job will most likely have them working until 8:00 am the following day. I want to take images that truly capture how these spaces asre utilized on a given day, at a given time. The diversity of action that take place throughout these spaces is unbelievable. I want to make sure that I dont “sugar-coat” anything, but pull away the real message.

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Reading Response/Project Update

In our class discussion, we spoke about several different things from the reading. One of the more interesting facts from the reading was the segregation taking place in Las Angeles, and other cities alike. Cities coninue to push those who are less-fortunate into smaller and samller areas. On one particular street, vehicle traffic is unheard of because of the space is used by those who don’t have homes or anywhere to spend the night. These individuals continue to congregate to locations such as these because they have been exiled by the community around them.

I am excited about my project because I was able to find new direction in my images and text. Last night I traveled down to the “East end” district on a non-business evening. I took ten different images, and I plan to compare these same images to those on a business night. Using this strategy, I should be able to compare how these spaces are used on a given night, and how this changes throughout the week.

I highlighted the section of the reading related to these locations within cities that homeless and less-fortunate individuals are being pushed towards because I plan to incorporate it into my own project. There are spaces on the street that are designated for different individuals, and I hope to expose this fact in my comparison of these images.

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Men’s Lacrosse Spring Break Trip 2012

Men's Lacrosse Spring Break Trip 2012

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Learning Log

I traveled down to Lawerence street during the day, and also on a non-business night. (Not Thursday, Friday, or Saturday). Its interesting to see this place when its not packed with people of all different backgrounds and cultures. These building are old warehouses, that were used to house different manufacturing companies before this area was transformed into a night-life district.

Similar to concepts behind success in manufacturing, the utilization of space is crucial in being successful. More space allows more productivity, and in the case of night-life, additional space allows more business. These bars are positioned strategically in an effort to accomodate more people on a given night. All of these customers may have different consumption history. Bar owners recognize that they can only retain so much profit from drink sales, so sapce is crucial in determining a “cover charge.” This charge takes place as soon as the customer walks into the establishment. If the particular individual leaves the bar at any point, they will be expected to pay the same amount to re-enter the establishment. The purpose of this charge is to accomodate for average spending habits by customers. On a given night, an average customer is expected to spend only 10 dollars in a particular establishment. This calculates out to be an average of 2-3 drinks. After paying employees and accounting for supply costs, there is minimal profit margin; thus, bar owners use techniques to increase this margin by utilitizng space in the most effective way.

Blockades are used to channel customers in different directions, and different checkpoints are used to make sure that customers are constantly being charged when they enter different spaces. On St. Patrick’s day this street is completely blockaded. There are two main checkpoints used to garner “street cover” revenue. Despite this charge, there are additional charges required to enter nightclubs on the street, and there is absolutely no re-entry onto the street after an individual exits. There are designated exits that are monitored closely, so that each customer is charged accordingly.

On a typcial blockaded night (weekend), a customer may be charged to walk onto the street, but customers under the legal drinking age will be given a separate charge. Now that the bar owners have gained this initial charge, they work to make profit in different spaces. Heat nightclub offers an atmosphere that typically attracts African-American and Hispanic clientel. These customers are channeled to a different door where they will be asked to pay a separate charge to enter the club. Before these customers purchase their first beverage of the night, most likely, they have already spent $20-$30 before they are standing in front of a bartender ordering a drink.

Other spaces on the street are designated for food services. The goal of this is to limit any reason for customers to leave the street. Bar owners look to generate as much profit from each customer during their time on the street. These street vendors sell different types of food, and reach agreements with the bar owners to have their business in these spaces.

The Pig used to be a sports bar that featured booths, televisions, and kitchen. The venue has changed dramatically to utilize the potential space. The booths and table were removed, and the bar no longer serves food. The booths were removed to maximize the potential floor space. Drink prices are cheap because the main clientel atrracted to this establishment are college students and those who are not of the legal drinking age. Many of these customers are not familiar with bar “culture”; therefore, they do not know how to tip bartenders properly, or simply cannot afford beverage prices. Bar owners recognize this and work to make their profit at the “door.” Cover charges are used to narrow the profit lost in accomodating to the clientel. The Fire Marshall’s posting states that it is unlawful and unsafe for more than 185 customers to be in the establishment. Regardless of this posting, on an average night moer than 500 customers pack into this particular bar. That said, the bar has an opportunity to generate two-three thousand dollars just for hosting these individuals.

The fire marshall could shut down these establishments for not complying with occupancy regulations, but today’s economy suggests that any business is healthy for society. When these bar establishments suffer, there is a spiraling affect among different businesses in this region. Food services benefit and suffer from the amount of potential customers that come to this region during the weekends. Transportation services also benefit from an increase in night-life. This is where businesses such as these become extremely vague in their standards and order. I strongly believe that rules are established to be followed, and this non-compliance with the fire-marshall’s posting jeopardizes the integrity of these establishments and all those who are involved.

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Reading Response: Chapter 4 and 5

PechaKucha 20×20:

This is a presentation style in which 20 different images are shown for 20 seconds each. This material was beneficial to the conversation held in class, and the project we are currently working on. I found the discussion in class to be much more helpful than the reading assigned the previous Monday. It was beneficial to hear other’s ideas, and use criticism to build my own idea for the project.

Many different ideas and thoughts can be taken away from an image, so with a presentation style such as the Pechakucha 20×20, it is important that the image is utilized in an effective fashion. You have limited time to use an image in effort to show the audience your intended message. The project that we are working on focuses on the use of space in an image, and how we can compare it to other concepts. These ideas may directly relate to the image, or they may have different meanings that are unorthodox to the image’s first impression.

I haven’t concluded on the images I will use for my project, but I have several ideas fopr what I would like to accomplish through my use of images and this project. My goal is to show how the different spaces on Lawerence street in Rochester, NY are used on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. For many, these are nights where groups of friends congregate to consume alcohol and engage in the social activities available in this “night-life” district. There are so many different spaces on this street that entertain different people and host different cultures throughout the weekend.

I have personal experience with all of these spaces and cultures, so I would like to expose these spaces for their true purpose, which may be different to the standpoints many have about these spaces. I hold some animosity toward this environment, but I would like to limit my personal opinions from entering my visual arguement; instead, I can use these images to make factual claims toward the argument.

The Pechakucha presentation method could be the perfect formula for what I am looking to accomplish in this project. 20 different images would allow me to make 20 different claims regarding 20 separate spaces on Lawerence street. I can exmaine the culture, purpose, and actual use of space in each of the images. This strategy could allow me to expose the truths behind each of these spaces that the audience may not be aware of upon their first impression of the image.

As I said, the readings and articles were beneficial, but the in-class conversation was extremely helpful in determining the direction of my project for the week. Some of the class offered constructive advice that will help me in my completion of the final product. I don’t want to make any personal attacks in this project, but I do want to expose the nature of this business, and how these different spaces are utilized to entertain and influence this cultural melting pot that takes place every weekend.

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Learning Log

This past Monday I brought in another draft of my infograph. We sat in groups and discussed the work we had done since our last meeting. My infograph showed signs of improvement, but also exposed many areas that needed additional work. My infograph was literally and figuratively very “black and white.” I was given points and suggestions to limit this “black and white” label and possibly add to the creative element of my product. Google maps should help my project in several ways, including the overall organization of my information and creativity. I worked with the Google maps application and learned how to focus the lense on a specifc area of the map and draw my intended route through the map. This application will be a huge help this weekend when I dig into this project and prepare my final product.

I still have an interest in making this infograph a 3 dimensional product. I think that there is no other way to express creativity besides making an image come to life by taking it off of the paper. This is an option I will need to explore as I prepare my project. Julia used logos from dining locations that she and her team ate at throughout her spring break. I think that is a great idea. It creates more specifics within the infograph, but also adds to the organization of the project. I will team up with Julia over the weekend and figure out how to incorporate these images into my project.

Another task that will offer some challenges will be determining the most effective graphs to present material to the audience. I have several different categories of information, but finding the best way to share this information won’t be easy. We discussed some possible solutions in class, but the final decision will take place over the course of the weekend. 

“Blowing up” the map on the area traveled allows me to be much more specific in my presentation of the material. My project was consumed by unused space (Canada, Atlantic ocean, other U.S. states) that took the audience away from the intended information.

The last assignment for this project will focus on how this is trip was memorable to me, as an individual. What can I do to show the audience that this was a special week for me? I will need to think about this as the weekend draws closer. Hopefully, I can include things that share this memorable time with the audience.

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Learning Log

Monday’s class was helpful in finding direction toward a final product of the infograph assignment. I brought a hand-drawn infograph that represented different activities that the men’s lacrosse team participated in over the 2012 spring break. The major categories included: food, hotels, practices/scrimmages/games, and entertainment. The rough draft was entertaining; however, it lacked several credentials. With assistance from the class I decided to take a different approach to the assignment. The organization of my material was a large issue in the overall presentation. The images were scattered, and the audience had a difficult time interpreting the direction of my infograph. Following the class and discussion, I decided to make a “road map” of the different activities that took place throughout the week. I used symbols to represent particular ideas and events. In addition, I included a key to aid the audience’s interpretation of the infograph.

My draft has made dramatic improvements, but I still feel that there is much needed work before I present the final product. The new “road map” idea improved my organization, but it limits the creative element of the infograph. I hope to find a way to include creativity within the work, but maintain an equal level of organization. The map and symbols I currently have are generated by the internet and microsoft word programs. I feel that this approach jeopardizes my creativity. I hope to find an alternate solution for this part of the project. I would like to include hand-drawn images along the side of this “road map.” I believe these hand-drawn images personalize the concept of this spring break trip and the importance of this time with my teammates.

I look forward to spending time on this project over the weekend, and hope to have a final product ready for Monday’s class.

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