I wanted to document the change of the White population and Hispanic population in my hometown, Orange County, where unlike Cincinnati, the Hispanic population is more prevalent than the Black population found here. I began by collecting data in GIS first creating a shape file of the county which was attained by TIGER then converting that shape into a .dwg file (AutoCAD) which I could then import into Rhino. Using the .dwg file which created curves, I wanted to create an organic shape for each block group with Grasshopper. I began by filleting each shape, placing points randomly on the block group as well as the filleted shape and then connecting the center of the block group, to the fillet point and then those points to the corresponding points on the actual block group. To create variation, openings were controlled through a true and false script, in which if it was larger than 50 in each block group area, it would be divided differently than the set division. Once variation and randomness was achieved, a mesh was applied then a frame to each was created to give the form a face which was then thickened, the end result was baked and was ready for the second step in the data representation process. Another Grasshopper script was created by morphing together Kevin Donavon’s Image Fab script with Ming Tang’s GIS Image Random script which allowed me to input 2 images of data, in my case White and Hispanic population maps. A plane was also necessary to the script so it knew where to apply the z values to each block group, in accordance with the images: the darker the area, the higher the z value in Rhino, the lighter the lower the z value. Further each z value was multiplied (by 2) to exaggerate the heights. To have a solid base for the z values were all added to a value (my case: .01). Lastly each value was given a color based on its value which was applied by adding a gradient in the script. The final piece can be previewed in all its color and extrusions by Color Preview in Grasshopper. This form of data visualization has a dynamic effect on representing data in which the heights, color and form all emphasize the data being represented, especially in the case of block groups which mimic a city.
Status: School Project
Location: Cincinnati, OH, US