A History of Water in Auckland

6 11 2011

Well, this is the creation I came up with, part of the story that could be told regarding water in the Auckland Region.  Looking back on the synopsis I presented for this project in August,  this final flash animation is much narrower in focus to what I had previously discussed.  My initial aims were to use mapping processes to show how water flows, water levels, aquatic biodiversity and hydrological cycles have changed or been influenced by human activities in the Region, along with the possible environmental and financial costs associated with these changes.  But the closer the completion date came for this project, the realisation came that there really was only so much information that could be realistically interpreted and incorporated.  However, I would like to think that this final product  provides a respectable narrative for water in the Region, one that people in Auckland may easily relate to and understand, but also one which is informative in its content and extent.

As for the flash animation, it had been awhile since I had attempted something like that (2003!).  Technically speaking, there was a bit of relearning to do but a lot of it was vaguely familiar.  Just need to work on my tweens a bit (the timings different objects which create the motions seen in a flash animation).  It wasn’t until the display was installed where I realised that I should have picked up the pace in some places!  I also would have liked to have taken better advantage of the audio though I left much of it out at the last moment fearing the distraction it may cause.

As with any project, there is almost always more that you would have wanted to do.  For me, I felt like I only just scratched the surface of what could have been told.  I would have liked to have gone into more detail into Onehunga Springs and the importance of One Tree Hill’s permeable surface in replenishing this groundwater source.  Another point of interest is the historical reliance on Lake Pupuke to supply the water needs of the North Shore, and how it was not just the construction of the Harbour Bridge but also a direct water pipeline from Kyber Pass Road Reservoir and Auckland’s water resources that opened up the area to new development.

I would have also liked to have incorporated the costs and capacities of future water sources for the Region, which might have tied in better with the final graphic in the flash animation which locates most of these resources to the north and east.  As was noted in the presentation from August, Watercare Services Ltd. has already projected what future demand will look like, and the cost curve show how some of the identified future sources of water for Auckland compare in terms of yield and cost.  It would have been beneficial to have integrated this information as well in the narrative.

However, I am pleased with the final flash animation that was produced and enjoyed the story’s that I was able to find and discover through the research.  To close, I would like to say that our class as a whole created some interesting and informative projects, each of which highlighted some of our individual talents and skills.  I would also have to say that I was quite impressed with a number of the performances by individuals in the Dance Studies Programme.  It is rare for such a collaboration to take place in this institute and I would hope to see more opportunities for such cooperation in the future!


Global Water Resources

16 08 2011

As I continue to contemplate my seminar for tomorrow, here are a couple of interesting graphics I came across about statistics for global water resources.  May not be entirely pertinent to our final assignments but interesting nonetheless.




The Meaning of a River

2 08 2011


A propitious, yet slightly melancholic look at the Los Angeles River.


Maps as Art

31 07 2011


I happened to come across this article today on The Huffington Post.  It is an interesting juxtaposition of the different forms of media and how our minds tend to see or make up shapes and patterns in everyday objects.

Makes me recall how Germany always reminded me of Pac-Man as a kid…  Did anyone else ever see that?

Anyway, take a look.



Intangible Design

30 07 2011

In the past, whenever embarking on a new design project, we have usually had some basic criteria with which to build a graphical representation upon.  This may have come in the form of a site, material or a specific use or function, and all we have to do is lift off the cap of our pen (or in these times open up AutoCAD or SketchUp) and a project would simply flow forward.  But even without this criteria, our intuition easily told us what was required and what pieces were needed to implement a design – lines, shapes, spaces, colors, details and so on.

What makes this project so unique and challenging is that there is no design precedence for many of us to follow.  Water, as necessary and influential as it is in our daily lives, has such an intangible feature about it that it makes it that much more difficult for us to use our creativity and  intuition to go about creating a visual design – a design which encapsulates its essence and indispensability.  It requires a whole new way of thinking about notation and spatial organizations.

Should make for an interesting challenge.