Image: Bain News Service, Union Square from a skyscraper, New York, 1908, via Library of Congress, public domain
It was a very filling Thanksgiving weekend on this end, and while I did not take a nap after the feast I might as well have for the whole weekend because up until now I have not accomplished anything for school. But a little R & R can’t hurt, and if anything I feel more energized now than I think I have been at any point during the term. Maybe I can produce twice as much as I was before now that I got that much needed Vitamin D from the outdoors, wishfully hoping.
I did make an attempt at using URT for the first time on this project this term. Nothing special, just one layer and one point added to make sure I understand the process and to see if it all saved correctly. However, the initial success was slowed a little when URT appeared down starting on Wednesday the 23, but Rory has since corrected that problem. I can now say I have three layers created for the Union Square Movie Theater Project; existing theaters, abandoned theaters, and demolished theaters. One question I will pose right now and probably ask in class if there is a chance, is it possible to change the colors of the points on the map specifically between layers to show their differences?
I was also debating adding one more layer to this mix, converted theaters, but there would be some confusion about this process’ classification. For instance, does a name change constitute a conversion? How about adapting the theater for digital projection or 3D? If these factors would come into play there would be way too much overhaul from the existing theaters layer, and in the end I only found one theater that could be classified in this layer without reading into the terminology too much. I also like the idea of existing theaters contrasted with the unused and demolished relics of the area, my hope is that when the plotting is finished the map will look somewhat like a graveyard with a few scattered points close by to be interpreted as the visitors to these graves.
But analogies aside this process is starting to come into full swing, and with only three weeks remaining my work load will only increase from here. If this is going to work I need to break away from internet research and re-explore the library. While there is a wealth of information available at my fingertips and a lot of magazine and newspaper archives are available online I feel that the research for this project has been very one-sided. I need to visit the library again and follow up on some of the archives that are not available online such as Marque Magazine, Motion Picture News, and Film History Yearbook. Not to mention the few articles that I have a specific date for but no article available online. I will definitely make a trip this week to follow up on these leads and hopefully tie up some of the loose ends between dates on my timeline for each theater.
My goal from today on is to plot all the theaters with the basic information I have by this coming Friday night, that way I know all the theaters I want to talk about will be on the map and my next step will be to make the points look as extensive as the handful that I have already completed researching. I also want to create an introduction for this project to clear up any loose ends about the location and type of theaters included. I think the best way to go about this is to work it into another blog post, giving the class the option to comment on what the project is and how to interpret it based on a few paragraphs.
But for now I have to start working on my map critique for Wednesday.