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Craft Mapping

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Jay Thakkar

on 26 September 2015

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Transcript of Craft Mapping

Craft Mapping
an overview
Pre Field Work
Field survey
Post Fieldwork

Planning & Organisation
leads to
Availability of the data determines the:
most appropriate areas for mapping
scope and possibilities of the future interventions
time required for mapping
1. Forms
2. Photographs
The interactive form is designed to record in detail the information about numerous types of crafts

The Mobile Application Form has been developed using Open Data Kit platform, and is used through mobile or tablet.

The Form is developed through the process of research, trial-error experimentation and pilot project conducted by the researchers of DICRC.

The form collects a range of information ranging from type and location of crafts to materials used to the various levels of crafts and expressions involved.

The Mobile Application Form can be easily adapted for survey in different regions of the country, even though they differ in the making and expressions of the various crafts related to Interior Architecture.

The respective forms help accumulate specific data pertaining to the crafts or worth documenting and the craft clusters in a region.

Before commencing on the actual field work, one should gather basic information from:
Libraries of various universities
Indian Council for Cultural Relations
Craft Council of India
Craft Revival Trust
National Museum
Central Secretariat and the respective State Secretariats
National & State Archives
Regional Training Institutes
Resource persons
local experts
University scholars
Local governing officers
During the field survey diverse data will be collected and recorded in various formats like Mapping Form, Photographs, Sketches, Audio Recording, etc.

The field survey phase comprises of
Primary Survey craft practices and craft clusters and areas to be recorded
Interviews/ Interaction
Filling of Craft Mapping form

Crafts Person's profile
Referred and Suggested Bibliography
Chapados Louis. Study of Craft Sector in Canada. Ontario. Canada. May 2001

Craft Australia. National Craft Mapping Project- Report. March 2006

UNESCO. Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts Report. Cultural Mapping of India.

Department of Business Innovation and Skill. NESTA. Mapping Heritage Craft. October 2012

Craft Council of India. Craft Economics and Impact study. Volume 1 Stage 1 and 2. Chennai. April 2011

Classifying and measuring Creative Industries. National Skills Academy.. NESTA. UK

Thakkar, J. Fieldwork in Interior Architecture. Ahmedabad, India.
Thank You
Craft Mapping : Definition

Craft Mapping is an approach towards identifying, understanding and developing a detailed inventory of the Craftspeople, Craft Designers, Craft Entrepreneurs and Craft Enterprises and organizations associated with different types of Crafts.

The mapping is done in the identified regions to generate a comprehensive data which will help to develop an in depth understanding of the craft communities within that region.

The Craft Mapping is an inclusive system of recording this information through on-field survey using Mobile Interactive Application, photographic survey, question based inventory and interviews. The Mobile Mapping System allows multiple users to input and edit the data on the field and hence the data gets consistently updated.

The digital technology allows the data to be disseminated in various formats in public domain like of Interactive Online Craft Map and Directory.

It is difficult to document all the facets and intangible nuances of crafts. Craftspeople hold the empirical knowledge and wisdom associated with crafts. But there is lack of clear and comprehensive data on the number of craftspeople as well as those associated with Craft Sector.

There is huge number of crafts being practiced in several regions of the country and to map all of them, there has to be a unified system of mapping.

The available data is not updated as well as disseminated in larger public domain due to the traditional method of mapping through paper.

Craftspeople are not yet technologically literate and they cannot update their information on their own. Henceforth it becomes imperative for various organizations, institutes, government bodies as well as individuals to take up the task of mapping. This demands for a comprehensive as well as user friendly system which is in line with today's technological advancement. Hence there is need for developing a Mobile Craft Mapping System.

Craft Mapping will also create comprehensive data bank about various crafts, designations, skill analysis, types of practices, use of material, varied craft techniques, various applications and types of outputs as well as insight into the craft cluster community.

The data will act as a valuable resource for research as well as policy making decisions. The user group that will benefit out of this will be craftspeople, design professionals, educators, government officials, conservationist, and all those related to the field of Art, Craft, Design and Architecture.

Mapping of Craftspeople and Craft Enterprises acts as the first step towards understanding the scale of the crafts within a particular region.

This information helps in understanding a specific or various crafts and their associations as well as it also helps in identifying the craft cluster/s within particular region.

The information collected through mapping becomes a foundation to generate various decisions related to craft policies.

It is also a primary step leading to detailed research, documentation and analysis of the selected craft.

This essentially helps in identifying craft clusters and regions where crafts have been practiced since generations and the historic development of the area

Pre-field research makes the identification and recording process more efficient and focused.

Research & Data Collection
The Mapping produces comprehensive information, which consists of images and associated data.

The mapping data gets transmitted through the visual mapping from site, and gets delivered on to a dedicated server and is stored there.

This process uses Aggregate facility of the Open Data Kit (ODK), which helps manage the transferred data and use them in an organized way.

The photographs collected through the mapping are categorized and cataloged according to the various sections.

This recordings could be also be transformed to Google Fusion Tables, allowing online viewing and data management.
The dataset can be exported in the form of CSV files for spreadsheets or as KML files for Google Earth, to analyse and understand the amount of data generated from the field work.
The collected data can be disseminated in the following formats:
1. Craft Directory
2. Craft Documentation
3. Craft Map
4. Fieldwork Reports
5. Publications
6. Website
7. Educational Kits and Manuals
8. Exhibitions Panels/Posters
9. Audio-visual Formats

Craft Map

The form is relevant for gathering information of crafts which are worth documenting and the craft community

The procedure starts with an inquiry about the craft practised in the region, the positioning of craft clusters and the craft community

The form then collects information regarding the tools and techniques used in the craft form and the craft person practicing the same

The mapping form also collects information regarding several parameters like knowledge base, designation etc to analyse the craft person and the craft community.

The mapping limits itself to collecting the tangible information about the building along with the communication details.
Craft Mapping Form
Craft Mapping Form
3. Talks and Notes
Photographs of crafts person should be taken individually and in group and their names should be recorded in the field notes with the photograph number.

Permission to be taken before taking any photograph

Craft product should be recorded from all the sides.

Documentation photograph should have clarity in terms of composition, light quality and information.

Furniture elements and objects should be recorded from different angle including an isometric view photograph.

It would be kind to send this photographs in hard format back to the craftspeople

Keep a book to record the number and description of all the photogrphs taken.


Profile of the craftspeople

Few Pointers for Photography
Conversation with craftspeople about various social and cultural aspects will help in understanding their context and current conditions

It will give insight into the history and the time since the craft has been practiced

Understanding the details and making of a craft object/s will be clear through multiple question and answer sessions

Informal discussions with people in the house will help in revealing information about myths, belief systems, folk lore and music.

Maintain a diary of everyday’s experience.

Record the physical entity that are interesting - in terms of detail, forms, objects, finishes, materials, making, contact details.

Write about the holistic experience about community in terms of the taste of food, culture, family structure, life style, sleeping pattern and the belief systems associated with a particular craft form

Record the history of craft community and important events that shaped and transformed a craft practice


To acquire knowledge in order to advance the understanding of cultural heritage, its values and its evolution.
The mapping records can provide a way to investigate examples of various craft techniques practiced since generations from the past that may otherwise be too scattered or too difficult to visit, or that have subsequently disappeared.
The mapping records also help in developing a holistic picture of a craft sector in turn helping in understanding the craft community and the craft practices in utmost detail.
Policy & Planning

To encourage formulation of Development Plans and identify Potentials of Revitalization for various craft clusters within a region
To encourage and enhance the flow of Traditional Knowledge Systems involving ingenious use of local materials and varied Space Making Crafts and Surface Narrative Crafts.
Craft Awareness

To promote the interest and involvement of the people towards Crafts and traditional practices
Awareness generated through dissemination of recorded information through publications and site interpretation.
Mapping can also provide future generations with information on traditions long since vanished.
Re-Interpretation of Craft

Mapping of various craft techniques allows the designers to interpret and innovate in their respective practices and develop products rich in traditional wisdom and in line with the latest technologies.
Furthermore, it allows the designers to communicate with the craftspeople during the process of understanding and creating.
Craft documentations
Craft cluster studies
travel books
specialized books containing information about the architecture and history of the area
research publications
Primary People:

Skilled people

Associated People:
Craft Designer
Craft Entrepreneur


Craft Design Practices
Craft Workshops
Small and Medium Enterprises

Corporate Sector
Government Bodies

The method of recording is determined by:

Purpose of recording
Nature of crafts to be documented
Availability of technology and human skills
The cultural and social context
Available Funding
Time on the field

The map provides the geographical locations to all the surveyed craft clusters recorded

The app along with the mapped information also provides the routes traveled during the mapping process.

The app is segregated into two major categories, buildings and elements; using which a person can navigate through the map.

It provides the facility of generating a query in a similar way to the catalogue and range from craft category to the materials and crafts involved.

All the mapped data is represented through icons, which on clicking display information card for each element.

This information card shares information pertaining to the element selected, including the craft techniques and the use of materials for constructing it.
Product Photographs
Need for Mobile Mapping System

Craft Mapping Categories

Modus Operandi
Internet and Media
Local newspaper
Various Craft organizations websites
Government Websites for Statistical Data
E Publications and online resources
Google Maps and Social Media
To collect the data on the field in the limited period of time its important to plan the entire visit

Tentative itinerary based on locations of available craft should be identified in our background research. The itinerary, in turn, will help identify specific information about topography and landscape including distances that were expected to be travelled and sites to be visited.

Carry several different maps at various scales of the region which can be sourced from books, travel shops, online portals and government agencies. Lot of information about the location of craft enterprises will be available from the local people

Craft Mapping Process
Craft Mapping Form
Analysis of crafts and craft community can be done in two formats
Statistical Analysis
Geo-Spatial Analysis
Through ODK Aggregate the stored data is displayed in a tabular form which enables the researchers to form analytical charts or pie diagrams to understand the mapped data.
The Google Fusion Table also provides means for visualizing data with pie charts, bar charts, lineplots, scatterplots, timelines, and geographical maps.
Jay Thakkar
Assistant Professor
Faculty of Design
Head of Research
Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre
CEPT University


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