It sounds like I’m trying to valiantly defend our contract against ferocious attackers. Contract Combat!
This Then & Now project came with a lot of artistic freedom since there weren’t any rigid guidelines, so a lot of choices had to be made at the beginning of the process. We had so many ideas and visions for the site that it was hard to choose! Ultimately, we ended up with a nice blend of everyone’s ideas. We decided to cut out the greater Fredericksburg area and focus on UMW, which turned out to be a great choice as this was a rather time consuming project! Our goal was to have around 60 pictures (120 including their “Now” counterparts), and ended up with 60 posts on our site and over 120 images! As much as we loved the idea of blending, it wasn’t possible with all of the photos and would have taken too much time, so we incorporated only a small number of blended photos, focusing more on just gathering all the necessary pictures. We split up the labor as evenly as we could, according to each member’s strengths: Jess the technology queen built most of the site, Carly created the fancy interactive map, Meaghan was the supreme keeper of the master list of tasks and responsibilities, Connor created our awesome intro video, and I was in charge of things relating to photography. On the topic of photography, I really wish that we could have taken pictures later because campus is gorgeous right now! But we did the best we could Everyone shared the task of creating posts and everything to do with them: gathering and uploading photos, creating captions, writing descriptions, and doing citations. Since we all were doing our own separate thing as far as the posts go, doing a cleanup of the site at the end was a bit messy. We tried very diligently to stay on the same page and do things the same way, but our citations and caption formatting tended to vary from person to person. Before the final turn in we each had a “clean-up” task: Jess did fancy coding things, making sure the tables and such were all aligned, Carly made sure our tags were uniformed, Meaghan went through the photo citations, Conner checked the text citations, and I proofread and edited all of the photo descriptions.
The Then & Now group did a pretty stellar job of sticking to our contract. We met all of our milestones except for one- we didn’t have all of our descriptions done by April 6th. That task proved timelier than we expected, but we got everything done before the project was due! There were a few resources that we didn’t end up using, like a scanner, and some that we used a lot more than we thought we would, like the Crawley book (I feel like collectively we must have read the entire thing by now). The division of labor was the same as we planned, other than I got more help with the photo-taking than I expected which was grand, and everyone pitched in on the advertising. Our advertising techniques and connection seemed to really work out, as our site has gotten over 500 hits since Tuesday! The fact that people are actually taking an interest in our work is very exciting, and I am proud of all that Then & Now has accomplished this semester. Our group worked very well together and I am so glad that I had the opportunity to be a part of such a great project. I hope that this site is something that will last and possibly be built upon by future students, as there is much room for expansion!