Blue sky vs. all else (but mostly constraints)

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
In many threads here on the Imagineering section, it seems like most threads place most emphasis on the blue sky part of the Imagineering process when it comes to projects. And according to a video that was shown here, that is very important:

However, as the video rightly argues, the blue sky process is only part of the overall process. There are many other factors, of which I try to bring into play as much as possible. Chief among these, in my view, is constraints (i.e., physical space). However, it seems as though most people on these threads think that the blue sky part of the process is all that matters, nothing more. Not constraints, not funding, nothing but blue sky process. The person in the video shown did mention to take a moment to forget about constraints, but the key phrase is "take a moment", which means sooner or later, constraints will be important.

That's what this thread is about: namely, why it seems like I'm the only one who really does try to go beyond merely the blue sky process and see how anything I do would actually fit in the parks.

Oh, and no joking or sarcasm, please.
 

Zweiland

Well-Known Member
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Most of us always try to think about physical space in the parks, so I don't have a clue what you're talking about in that regard.

Otherwise, you're correct in that most of us don't tend to go past the blue sky process-- NOT because we don't think it matters, but because we don't always have the resources to approach it properly. At least, I don't.

And in competitions, we are also under time constraints.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Most of us always try to think about physical space in the parks, so I don't have a clue what you're talking about in that regard.

Otherwise, you're correct in that most of us don't tend to go past the blue sky process-- NOT because we don't think it matters, but because we don't always have the resources to approach it properly. At least, I don't.
But if you do think about physical space in the parks, isn't that going past the blue sky process? Because, to me at least, blue sky simply means you don't think about anything else except ideas that seem good for a park. Physical space, however, can prevent ideas from happening, if there's not enough room for it. I have some ideas for the parks, but unfortunately, few of them ever really get developed because there's not a lot of space for them. Certainly not at, say, the Magic Kingdom anyway. That's just how I am: I like to create ideas for the parks as though they really would happen.

And what do you mean by "resources"?

And in competitions, we are also under time constraints.
This has nothing to do with competitions, this just in general.
 

Zweiland

Well-Known Member

DinoInstitute

Well-Known Member
So you just forget about realism, then?
I don't think that's quite what he's saying. Sure, we have to take it into account and we try our best to, as you bring up a good point, it is an important part of Imagineering. But none of us here really know all of the details of the importance of certain backstage structures or spaces, or other requirements. The thing is, we aren't real Imagineers, so we can't truly be as realistic as you hope. But I do feel as though a lot of the time we try to do the best with what we can.
 

spacemt354

Chili's
That's what this thread is about: namely, why it seems like I'm the only one who really does try to go beyond merely the blue sky process and see how anything I do would actually fit in the parks.
With all due respect, I don't think you're the only one who has tried to go beyond blue sky. I feel a majority of members here think in terms of a combination of what they want to see vs. what is possible. A lot of these somewhat "realistic" ideas come out in Imagineering competitions, as @Zweiland brought up earlier.

When you speak of land constraints, there actually are a lot of expansion pads in the 4 parks. And most concepts in the competitions as well as brainstorming threads take feasibility into consideration. Not all, but there are some rationales behind this.

The Imagineering forum has a very active youthful presence. By youthful, I mean members in high school/middle school. There are some in college and beyond, but the younger audience has to be taken into account. You can't expect a 13 year old to have the background information/experience/or knowledge to understand budgets/engineering/etc beyond a creative blue-skyish format. That being said, I'm definitely impressed with the quality of work these (essentially) kids put out on a weekly basis, taking into account specifics that absolutely include space constraints and/or feasibilities of certain attraction concepts.
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
The constrains of the real world are something people spend YEARS learning, and even then though only tend to know their specialty within their field. Give the EPCOT Building Code a read for only a fraction of the constrains that exist. Disney likes to cultivate this image of the Imagineers being Renaissance Men who do everything, but that just is not true.

The people doing Blue Sky aren't the ones doing all of the construction drawings. They have an idea about what is needed, but those details are figured out as a project moves forward over years with many people involved.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
With all due respect, I don't think you're the only one who has tried to go beyond blue sky. I feel a majority of members here think in terms of a combination of what they want to see vs. what is possible. A lot of these somewhat "realistic" ideas come out in Imagineering competitions, as @Zweiland brought up earlier.
Well, with all due respect, I don't engage in the competitions as a rule.

When you speak of land constraints, there actually are a lot of expansion pads in the 4 parks. And most concepts in the competitions as well as brainstorming threads take feasibility into consideration. Not all, but there are some rationales behind this.
Where in, say, the Magic Kingdom can you find these expansion pads? Like I said, I don't engage in competitions very often. It's outside my zone of comfort.

The Imagineering forum has a very active youthful presence. By youthful, I mean members in high school/middle school. There are some in college and beyond, but the younger audience has to be taken into account. You can't expect a 13 year old to have the background information/experience/or knowledge to understand budgets/engineering/etc beyond a creative blue-skyish format. That being said, I'm definitely impressed with the quality of work these (essentially) kids put out on a weekly basis, taking into account specifics that absolutely include space constraints and/or feasibilities of certain attraction concepts.
It's hard to tell where the youthful presence is, because people come in all the time. And incidentally, I'm in college and about to graduate.
 

spacemt354

Chili's
Well, with all due respect, I don't engage in the competitions as a rule.

Where in, say, the Magic Kingdom can you find these expansion pads? Like I said, I don't engage in competitions very often. It's outside my zone of comfort.

It's hard to tell where the youthful presence is, because people come in all the time. And incidentally, I'm in college and about to graduate.
Nobody is forcing you to engage in competitions. I'm not sure what your point is.

Many areas outside the railroad can be used for expansion purposes. Just like Disneyland. But again still not sure why you're hung up on that.

That's great you're about to graduate. As am I. If you remain in these threads for long enough youll notice an active younger audience
 

MANEATINGWREATH

Well-Known Member
I'm 21 myself, so I'm not necessarily apart of the "younger" audience. For some, most of our work takes place in a completely fictional world where parks are built in Australia, or Canada, or Greece, or Germany, or wherever. Paying heed to real world constraints is important, yes. But on an online armchair Imagineering forum where a bunch of people who love theme parks and Disney gather together to have fun? I'd say not as much. True, when doing some blue sky work for pre-existing parks, you should take into consideration sizing, space limitations, funding, etc., but when it boils down to it, none of this stuff is ACTUALLY going to happen. This is all for purely fictional fun. For most of, if not all of us, WDWMagic is a place where we can come and share ideas, regardless of how far fetched on unrealistic they are, because quite frankly, there's no place else in the world to do it.

If we were real Imagineers being paid by the Walt Disney Company, then yes, I'd say that realism is strictly important and should be apart of every discussion. But the fact of the matter is, we're just armchair Imagineers for now, and in the meantime, we should have fun doing whatever we want with the blank canvas called the internet. Whether realism is brought into the picture or not really just depends on the person.

Competitions on the other hand require rules and restrictions. Blue sky threads do not. It's really all a matter of opinion.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Nobody is forcing you to engage in competitions. I'm not sure what your point is.
I didn't say that anyone was forcing me to join competitions. It's just that that's where a lot of people spend most of their time when they are here.

Many areas outside the railroad can be used for expansion purposes. Just like Disneyland. But again still not sure why you're hung up on that.
For starters, take a look at this thread here: http://forums.wdwmagic.com/threads/wasted-space-behind-fantasyland.896853/. The space behind Fantasyland is where they have, among other things, a fireworks launch area and a fireworks fallout zone. And how would one be able to reach beyond the train tracks anyway?
 

Zweiland

Well-Known Member
For starters, take a look at this thread here: http://forums.wdwmagic.com/threads/wasted-space-behind-fantasyland.896853/. The space behind Fantasyland is where they have, among other things, a fireworks launch area and a fireworks fallout zone. And how would one be able to reach beyond the train tracks anyway?
That thread isn't actually talking about areas beyond the train tracks, but to answer your concerns, we have to use a little creativity. For instance, why not make it an indoor land with a fireproof roof (which is completely feasible)?
 

spacemt354

Chili's
I didn't say that anyone was forcing me to join competitions. It's just that that's where a lot of people spend most of their time when they are here.



For starters, take a look at this thread here: http://forums.wdwmagic.com/threads/wasted-space-behind-fantasyland.896853/. The space behind Fantasyland is where they have, among other things, a fireworks launch area and a fireworks fallout zone. And how would one be able to reach beyond the train tracks anyway?
That's not even what I'm referring to.

Space mountain is beyond the tracks. So is splash mountain and pirates of the Caribbean.

Indiana Jones in Disneyland is a good example of how a queue can extend beyond the tracks to reach an attraction.

Part of the fun of these threads is being innovative and creative. While these things may never happen, it's fun to think about it.
 

MANEATINGWREATH

Well-Known Member
A LOT of things are behind the railroad tracks. Whole lands are beyond railroad tracks (see Critter Country, Mickey's Toon Town, Grizzly Gulch, Mystic Point, Toy Story Land). It's nothing new. As for fireworks, yes, it'd be tricky finding a new spot for them, but it could work. Backstage rerouting has been done before and it'll certainly be done again.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
A LOT of things are behind the railroad tracks. Whole lands are beyond railroad tracks (see Critter Country, Mickey's Toon Town, Grizzly Gulch, Mystic Point, Toy Story Land). It's nothing new. As for fireworks, yes, it'd be tricky finding a new spot for them, but it could work. Backstage rerouting has been done before and it'll certainly be done again.
You're absolutely right, a lot of stuff is located out past the tracks. But it's particularly difficult at the Magic Kingdom, not only due to the fireworks, but also due to the fact that the entrance to the utilidors is literally right behind Small World.

The only real way for an expansion is behind Frontierland, but that, too, would be difficult with the Rivers of America in the way.

You see, one big problem with this is that I have Aspergers, and I have a tendency to be very literal-minded, which makes it extremely difficult to work in a completely fictitious atmosphere (hence, why I rarely joined in, say, that Australia thread). Unlike a lot of people here, I pay a lot of heed to real-world constraints, even if it means stifling creativity.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
True, when doing some blue sky work for pre-existing parks, you should take into consideration sizing, space limitations, funding, etc., but when it boils down to it, none of this stuff is ACTUALLY going to happen. This is all for purely fictional fun.
So basically what you are saying then is, "None of this stuff will actually happen, so what's the point of pretending that it will?" Did I get that right?
 

spacemt354

Chili's
Okay...

If people take realism into account, how come it seems like I'm the only one who thinks it is strictly important, equally as important as blue sky, if not more so?
.- You are not the only person on here who thinks it's important to take realism into account. You're not.

- From what I can gather, you have trouble wrapping your head around concepts in Australia, Greece, etc because they aren't real. I had suggested to you that it may be best to focus on actual theme parks. There are plenty of threads regarding how to fix Epcot (realistically) or DHS (realistically) or other global parks like Disneyland Paris...

- When people say this is for fun, and their concepts might not ever happen, in some cases that's tangential to whether or not the concept is realistically feasible. Inception may never go into the Imagination pavilion....but it's a cool idea...and so people will make a thread talking about their idea for that concept. That doesn't mean they ignore 'realism'. They aren't going to build a 200 ft tall roller coaster in the Imagination pavilion...because that can't be real. But there's nothing 'unreal' about placing the concept of Inception into Journey into Imagination and travel through different dream layers in a similar dark ride format. While that may never happen in Epcot...it's not out of the realm of possibilities...and that's what makes the thread fun.

Hopefully that better explains it.
 
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