Relaunching the blog with a new name, a simpler URL, and an expression of love for my favorite time of year: DragonCon.
As always, click to zoom.
Sorry for the long break, but I’m hoping to plunge back into this with infographics of utmost simplicity & frequency.
First up, we all know that the freezing point of water is 32°F (0°C), at which point this ubiquitous liquid becomes a solid. What about some other common fluids?
Click to zoom, y’all.
Last time, on it’s finally time you knew something, the public art installation / physical infographic of sorts entitled Fifty-Five Square Miles had just been put on display for Art on the Atlanta BeltLine. Now, a year later, here’s a closer look at the project as it was altered, improved, and claimed by the elements (including spiders building webs in interstates and squirrels hiding walnuts in skyscrapers).
As to why I’ve decided to add this entry after abandoning the blogosphere for just over a year, my infographic on Atlanta’s skyscrapers has mysteriously reasserted itself back into the annals of reddit & facebook lately, so I’ll take this case of the artificially intelligent jpeg as a signal that I may as well reassert more infotainment back here. Now, I can’t promise a new graphic to greet you every morning as a part of a balanced breakfast, or even for that matter assure you I’ll have produced something every week or two, but if I can overcome some logistical hurdles (absolving myself of the no-longer-novel concept of using MS Paint, acquiring and mastering Illustrator; those are really all the hurdles), I’d like to increase the frequency by a THOUSANDFOLD at least. Maybe tenfold.
Well, mostly. It’s installed and it’s on public display. The official debut is Saturday, but I mean, it’s public art, so you can go look at it now if you’re in Reynoldstown, specifically off Kirkwood Avenue and directly behind the Stein Steel factory (which I always imagine is just full of shirtless steelworkers hammering on anvils, but maybe that’s just me). I’d still like to add a few things (as a professional sports anti-fan, I still lack any Braves or Falcons memorabilia for Turner Field & the Georgia Dome), and
chances are it’s a certainty that I’ll be tweaking it and repairing it over the next three months. But here it is:
Another vantage point, as the direct perspective tends to fade into two dimensions:
A close-up of Little Five Points / Edgewood (my own neighborhood is littered with the refuse of sweetgum trees, so I added them earlier today):
I added Oakland City at the last minute (lots of old hangars and steel-ensconced warehouses there):
I still have a lot of work to do, in my opinion. But it’s now available to be scrutinized by the public eye, which is both exhilarating and frightening.
After some city-scouring and a few setbacks (including but not limited to hot glue melting skin, an incompatibility of the wood I selected with the summer climate of a world boiling itself, and millipede breeding season taking place on my moss solution test run), I’ve begun the process of attaching postcards, bicycle tires, outdated MARTA tokens, bottle caps, broken brick, and various pieces of business cards, retail packaging, and other local business detritus to the two massive sections of wood that will provide the foundation for the map. Check out some of the progress:
Bike tires for major roads, MARTA tokens for public rail (with dismantled Breeze cards as each station).
A view of downtown from Oakland Cemetery.
I mean, this is what I see when I look at East Atlanta Village.
The most successful moss solution by far, not that you can tell from the quality/proximity of this photo; this one a blend of buttermilk, Miller High Life, water retention gel, and clumps of dried moss (I’ll be using fresher moss for the final run). Strangely not as attractive to flies, ants, and pillbugs as the last few mixtures, and a much thicker layer that actually resembles the moss carpet it should.
The Atlanta BeltLine is a decade-long city project that will, if all goes planned, result in a 22-mile uninterrupted loop of hiking trails, park space, and energy-efficient mass transit around the city center. For Atlanta, located in a state where urban development is probably below mosque building in the list of government priorities, that’s quite something to look forward to. More effort has gone into the construction of this project than I’d realized in the few years since I read about the idea one day on a break from shelving copies of The Secret at whichever local big box bookselling superstore in which I worked at the time.
For the third year, an organization calling themselves Art on the Atlanta BeltLine has enlisted local artists to create projects for a three-month free outdoor exhibit along the BeltLine’s under-construction corridors.
I am one of these artists. As interested as I was in doing a solo art project that would actually be observed by people who aren’t my friends visiting my little blog because I ask them to on facebook, I didn’t expect to get in. But my proposal was accepted, and more than that, these people actively seem to really like this idea. I mean, I’m into it, but all these other people too? That’s just… that’s awesome.
I’ve begun the process of constructing a 6’x4′ tangible map of the center of the city that includes the BeltLine, composed of repurposed, recycled artificial materials for the human elements of the city (for instance, bike tires stretched out as the city’s main roads and beer bottle caps for buildings in bar neighborhoods like EAV) and a continuously growing moss medium covering the more natural areas of the city, including parks, tree-lined neighborhoods, and the BeltLine itself.
The coverage so far:
This is the actual backing of the map itself, which will eventually be covered in trash & moss that will show you where you are, so to speak. I’ve divided the surface into 24 squares that are likewise traced over a map of the area I’m using. It’s certainly not intended to display every street, business, or backyard shed, but it will be as accurate within its scope as possible.
Some of the materials I’ve gathered so far that will be transformed into neighborhoods, rail lines, and skyscrapers. And my cat.
Testing different recipes for the moss medium: the uppermost third is a mixture of buttermilk, beer, moss, and sugar. The second coat is the same mixture with two tablespoons of moss-specific water retention gel (ordered specially from the internet!) and another handful of moss clumps. The third coat will hopefully be another improvement and a step towards ensuring I can ensure this map will be mostly alive. Which likely won’t be a problem anyway considering how many ants & flies are already very happy about the prospect of free buttermilk, sugar, and beer.
The blog has conspicuously been on hiatus for a number of months thanks to the logistical difficulties of um, not having a computer.
But I’m back.
This time around, I decided to delve into the cultural realms of literature & film for a short list of some of the most recognizable narrative examples of a character’s descent into madness. Why a list, you ask?
I’ll tell you.
1.) When taking on a subject as ambiguous and malleable as narrative themes, an informal list seems the best choice. It’s not as definitive, but it strives to be an objective appraisal of the subjective.
2.) Lists welcome dialogue in a way that a purely informative graphic doesn’t; I’m hoping visitors will read this and want to discuss, comment, debate, and most importantly, well… that’s part of the next point.
3.) Informal lists like this one are meant to be expanded. This is a very short list of a very common narrative theme (I conspicuously went with the most culturally recognizable ones), so you’d better feel the need to mention the ones you feel should make the more expansive list of which this is obviously a small selection.
4.) This is the internet. The internet loves lists. This is a list.
COMING SOON: I’ll be tracking my progress with a much larger, much more physical infographic map of the city of Atlanta actually commissioned by the city through the Art on the Atlanta BeltLine project!