Journal Observations

June 28th: Today was my first day at the Condé Nast Archive.  I started the day meeting with my supervisor Brian Cross, who explained my role as a freelancer in the Vogue Digitization Project.  He went over all of the technology and company systems associated with a corporate publishing archive, such as their Intranet, Digital Archive, and Image Database.  He also explained to me the process of how the magazine issues are digitized—both scanned and converted into XML. I was also introduced to his colleague Beth Frey, and his supervisor Matt Dellinger.

10am – 4pm

June 29th: Today Brian Cross over-viewed the taxonomies and metadata associated with the XML files for Vogue.  I learned about the metadata schemes used for the archive: Prism Controlled Vocabularies (which is a publishing industry standard for metadata) and Dublin Core.  I was also set up to the system and given my own e-mail address.

10am – 4pm

June 30th: Today, Beth Frey introduced me to a special project—identifying models in runway shows using a DAM client application reminiscent to Adobe Bridge.  This project entails researching select Ready-to-Wear (RTW) and Haute Couture (HC) runway shows in New York and Paris, and tagging specific models in the CN database.  With this project, I am able to use my metadata, taxonomy, and cataloguing knowledge.  This afternoon, I identified the Spring 2010 HC Chanel and Givenchy shows.

10am – 4pm

July 1st: Today, in addition to model identifying the Fall 2010 RTW Rodarte and Proenza Schouler shows for Beth, I was introduced to another special project from Brian.  I am to go through sample issues of Vogue, from the late 1800s to present, and indicate similarities and differences in layout and content.  These issues have been specially selected to filter through an OCR process to field out XML impurities.  I am to comment on what I see: images, advertisements, articles, differing sections, and, most importantly, captions. 

10am – 4pm

July 5th: For Brian’s project, I have made an outline to better assess these magazine samples:

I.                    Advertisements

a.       Size

b.      Placement

c.       Industry

d.      Keywords – company/product name, what type of industry (ex/beauty), what/who is pictured, etc.

II.                 Articles

a.       Front of Book

i.      Title Pages

ii.      Index

b.      Well of Features

 i.      Celebrity profiles, fashion spreads, investigative journalism

c.       Back of Book

 i.      Smaller articles, trend pages

d.      Prism Controlled Vocabularies

III.               Images

a.       Size ( ¼ , ½ , or full)

b.      Captions – Designer Brand, Designer Person, how good is the information provided, is there a description, does it contain designer, material, is it placed next to the image or within the body text, credit, trends

10am – 4pm

July 6th: Today I continued reviewing the sample Vogue issues.  I completed my summaries for the 2009, 2008, 2007, 1999, and 1988 Vogue issues.

10am – 4pm

July 7th: This morning, I was able to complete my summaries for the 1981 and 1973 issues.  This afternoon, Matt Dellinger, Brian’s immediate supervisor, introduced me to another special project.  I am to visit the main headquarters building at 4 Times Square and conduct research at their library.  This project entails looking through every Vogue issue from the past three years and tracking the types and frequencies of foldout advertisements.  I found six main types, and forty-five different varieties of image layouts.  I then typed my notes and diagrammed the types.  (See Nature of Work Attachment).

10am – 4pm

July 8th: As of today, I finished reviewing the 1962, 1958, and 1952 sample Vogue issues.  I also continued to model identify for the Fall 2010 RTW 3.1 Phillip Lim, Jason Wu, and Marc by Marc Jacobs shows.  I then continued to research types of foldouts in Vogue at the library.

10am – 4pm

July 12th: This morning, I attended a departmental meeting that discussed the future of the Vogue archive project and my future responsibilities.  My supervisors taught all of the freelancers how to manually enter keywords for the images, based on the captions provided.  I then completed a keywording exercise that tested both my fashion knowledge and cataloging capabilities.

10am – 4pm

July 13th: Today, I continued model identifying for the Alexander Wang, Carolina Herrera and Zac Posen shows.  Each show contained over one hundred images (due to multiple views of each model).  Although this is a time-consuming project, I am now able to recognize some models and learn the spellings of their names.

10am – 4pm

July 14th: Today, I continued model identifying for the Fall 2010 HC Valentino and Bouchra Jarrar shows.  With this exercise, I am learning more about fashion, and how various popular trends are dictated by these high-fashion examples.

10am – 4pm

July 15th: Today, I continued model identifying for the Fall 2010 RTW Yigal Azrouel, Derek Lam, Vera Wang, and Isabel Marant shows.  These I found to be the most beautiful of the collections.  I am looking forward to the styles of clothing available this fall.

10am – 4pm

July 19th: I started a new project that entails events data organization.  Since the early 1970s, Condé Nast photographers have documented various events and uploaded them to their digital archive.  The titles for these events have become inconsistent through the years, and it is my job to organize them.  There are 1,827 event entries.  The events include film screenings, book parties, fashion collections, galas, balls, fragrance launches, etc.  I decided to take most of the afternoon to explore the event names before I develop an organizing scheme.

10am – 4pm                                                       

July 20th: This morning I continued with the events project.  Some of the titles given are somewhat vague, so I cross-referenced them with the images on the digital archive.  Here, I was able to read the keywords and descriptions, giving me more information about the event, and therefore allowing me to enter a more accurate title.  I have also been finding a few repeated events.

10am – 4pm

July 21st: Today, I continued with the events project.  I have been discovering that there are many events that are misspelled, mislabeled, and misinterpreted.  This is making my job both more time-consuming and complicated.  So this afternoon, I decided to just concentrate on identifying the specific book parties, film premieres, and exhibit openings.

10am – 4pm

July 22nd: This morning I started with the events project, organizing the fall and winter balls/galas, and fragrance launches.  This afternoon, I was chosen for a special project for Beth that is connected to the Vogue digital project.  Along with another intern, I am to experiment with the new keyworder program and write about what I like and what I thought the software programmers should add.  This was a very interesting task, as I was able to experiment with the text-mining software, and experience how eventual users will able to search for these images.  I was also asked to work on creating the vocabularies associated with these styles, which will eventually become the text-mining language.  I was so inspired by this exercise, that I have decided that I will research text-mining software and its place in a publishing company for my research project.

10am – 4pm

July 26th: Today, Brian introduced me to one more project.  In addition to working on the digital keyworder project and model identifying, I am to enhance select archive photographs using Photoshop.  These images are scanned slides from 1990s fashion shows.  After I crop and visually improve these photographs—by eliminating aged imperfections—they will be published on the digital archive.  Soon, users will be able to research these former shows for style changes and model histories.  I really like this project as I get to practice my Photoshop skills, and experience how fashion trends have changed.  My current assignment deals with the Dior Fall 1994 Runway Show.

10am – 4pm

July 27th: Today, I continued enhancing the archived photographs for the Spring and Fall 1992 Dior shows.  I also learned more about adjusting the color levels of images in Photoshop. 

10am – 4pm

July 28th: Today, my supervisor had to visit software engineers in Virginia and offered me the day off.  I took this opportunity to continue my research for my Practicum project.

10am – 4pm

July 29th: Today, I continued enhancing the archived photographs for the Fall 1995 and 1996 Dior shows.  I was also asked to continue interning for the next few weeks.  I am very much looking forward to future projects, and have thoroughly enjoyed my work thus far.

10am – 4pm


Total Hours = 120



** NOTE: TO DOWNLOAD AS WORD DOC, SEE ATTACHMENT BELOW

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Hadass Blank,
Aug 17, 2010, 8:25 AM
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