Friday, March 27, 2009

Alternatives Unit Summary

The alternatives unit was about expanding on the basic principles of design that was stated in the foundations unit and about the ancient world relating to the past.  The alternatives unit takes place in the Renaissance and Baroque time period.  One of the main concepts in the foundations unit was the principle of commodity, firmness, and delight.  The alternatives unit really emphasized commodity, firmness, and delight in the cathedrals that were being built during this time as Christianity was spreading throughout Europe.

            The duomo is Brunelleschi’s dome that is a part of the cathedral at Florence.  The duomo overshadows the city and is the epicenter of Florence.  It was thought to be a symbol for the city since it was like saying, “we can move beyond and make better.”  It is the largest dome and has the effect of a wuwu because of its large and tall scale.  The church was a prototype for another church, but the duomo made change instead of continuity because it went from medieval to gothic.  The duomo had the effect of the idea that there is connectivity between heaven and earth.  

Many churches had the plan of crossing east and west and it was very decorative element.  The Greek cross plan is a symbol of the Christian cross that Jesus died on for our sins.  Cathedrals also were decorative in the fact that they had mosaics that told stories and were very luminous.  The Rose window in st. Sernin helps focus on the alter, the most important part in a cathedral.  Geometry also played a big role in the alternatives unit as the contrast of dark and light were used a lot throughout the Renaissance.  The crossing square in cathedrals and 90-degree angles was also very geometric.

            Venezia, otherwise known as Venice, was and is the city of floating stone.  The city was man-made and is slowly sinking due to the tree trunks that hold the city up.  The water throughout the city was used for travel and borrowing.  The Grand Canal connects west and east and gives a spirit of peace.  There are many “squares” in Venice as well as a wuwu in San Marco Square.  The Maria Della Salute salutes Mary from not bringing sickness (the black plague) to Venice.  It is a celebration to the city of Venice.

            The alternatives unit tells us that it is okay to break the rules outside the box and to test the boundaries.  A great example of an artist and designer who broke rules was Michelangelo Buonarroti.  Michelangelo broke rules by breaking through surfaces of walls making them appear to be illusions.  He simplified from the old and made more height in his paintings that make them appear as if they are a part of the wall itself.  In the Capella Sistina, Michelangelo makes it hard for us to tell if the floor is the ceiling or vice versa because it could go either way with the disintegrating walls and fluidity.

            The Renaissance lead into the Baroque time period.  The Renaissance was all about rationality and the Baroque was all about emotion.  It was a time for thinking outside the box and revolution making that leads us into the next unit.  Versailles was built specifically for the king because he was the ultimate ruler and he had to have everything bigger.  He wanted a bigger house that had to relate everything to him.  The sun outside radiates out and reflects to the king because all things come back to and reflect on the king.  The revolution, however, interrupts the design process and slows it down.  The Hall of Mirrors reflect on the inside of the palace making the space look bigger and linking the outside world with the inside world by mirrors inside and waters and landscaping outdoors.  

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Grammar : Syntax

Audience:  An audience is a group of people who are watching an event.  It could also mean “the act of hearing, or attending to, words or sounds.” (  When you are going to a play, there is always a big audience to watch the performance.  For some people, their motivation comes from knowing that others will be watching them at some point.  In studio, we make projects that eventually get critiqued by the audience of everyone in the class and teachers.

 This model will be critiqued by my peers and teachers [the audience].

[Re]visions:  Revising is the process of making a new version of the original.   In drafting, we always make our first drawing on bond paper and then the finalized one is on vellum.  We revise the bond drawing to make it fit in the right place on the vellum so that it is in the perfect spot.  The place Vendome is similar to the Place de Vosges because the outside facades are very similar in looks, but the insides are revised completely differently.  (Roth)

My drafting for Stoel this week was first on bond paper and then revised onto vellum.

Character:  Character is something that everything and everyone has.  It is the features and traits that make up character, which makes something or someone so unique.  It is important to capture a client’s character, so that when you are designing for them you can add their own character in the designs you make for them.  Therefore, they will love what you have designed rather than something that does not have any of their taste in it.  The saltworks building has columns in the front that have much character in them because the columns are individual blocks that stack up on top of one another.  Details are what make character so unique.  “Designers searched for ornamental details that were more imaginative, gay, animated, and entertaining…” (Blakemore, 246) 

 My flower I drew has character because of all the detail.

Transition:  Transition is another word for change.  It means that something transforms from one thing to another or from one idea/concept to another.  In studio we form ideas/concepts that eventually change over a short period of time when doing a project.  We go from one idea to the next developing our concept further and deeper.  “The Regence style of chair was a transition from the primarily rectilinear forms of Louis XIV to the curvilinear contours of Louis XV.” (Blakemore, 256)   The statue of David by Michelangelo is different from the statue of David by Bernini in the way that Bernini transitioned from Michelangelo’s still stance of David to an ‘in-motion’ David.

Datum:  Datum can mean many things, but the one that relates to architecture is that datum is an item of information that comes from research or measurement.  Basically it is a single piece of information.  My furniture drawings I did for Suzanne is a piece of datum because they are assumed that they are for a family room because I drew all pieces that you would find in a family room.  A circle in the Renaissance time was used as datum and “…was an especially attractive form for Renaissance designers, symbolizing the perfection of God.”  (Roth, 360) 

This presentation board my group made follows a set of datum because it has much information.

Summary:  This weeks words are all about communication and how that communication is passed and received.  A piece of datum has character that gets revised by people to transition to another idea.  The audience receives the message and responds to it.  Communication involves grammar and syntax when writing or speaking.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Deliverables Articulation

Drawings -->

Exterior Facade Perspective: 1/4 scale on bond using white and black and grey primacolors

Plan View: 1/4 scale in black pen on vellum

Top View:  1/4 scale in pencil on bond

Detail Drawing from back of house:  4x4 bond in watercolor

View from back:  1/4 scale in black pen on bond paper

Front Elevation:  1/4 scale in pencil on vellum

Side Elevation:  1/4 scale in pencil on vellum

Hallway:  pencil on bond

 Staircase on Exterior:  black pen on bond

Roof Garden Perspective:  watercolor on bond

Outline of Essay -->

I. History
A. Name and year built
B. Designer/Architect and his background
C. Location
D. Style

II. House Details
A. Description of house
B. Rooms and their functions
C. Exterior Landscape (include garden roof)
D. Size of house and lot
E. Color choice (black and white)

III. Purpose
A. Why Modern
B. Function
D. Similar houses based of this house
E. What makes it stand out

Questions & Issues -->

How do I get a picture of the roof garden?
I can't find indoor pictures.
Should we mount our drawings?

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

P Week

Professional:  A professional in my eyes is someone who is educated/taught well and uses what they have learned to their full potential at all times in a business-oriented environment.  You have to learn how to act professional too.  For example you cannot act the same with your best friends as you do when you are working for a professional business.

Here is a picture of Alexander Julian and I at HPU.  Alexander Julian is a great example of someone professional because he has been very successful in his career with designing clothes, furniture, and much more.

Here is my groups presentation board for Suzanne's class that has a professional look to it because of the way it is laid out and how it nicely organized with a contrasting black background.

Perspective:  Perspective can mean a few different things.  It can mean the view in which you draw something, or the view in which you are thinking, or looking into the view of someone else from your eyes.  We have really worked on our perspective drawings from last semester and into this semester.  There is one-point perspective, which has one vanishing point, two-point, which has two vanishing points, and three-point, which has three vanishing points.  I have a hard time with two and three-point perspectives the most.  Sometimes you get confused at exactly where the line should go so that what you are drawing looks proportionate.  When we speak in class, we try to get our ideas (perspectives) said to others so that others can see the perspective from someone else’s viewpoint.  "Peruzzi's skill as a painter is illustrated by his painted perspective view on the far wall, which seems to obliterate the solidity of the wall." (Blakemore, 100)  Peruzzi painted in Rome and all were mainly perspective drawings that blend with the wall so you think they are part of the wall.

Here is a page in my sketchbook that shows my notes on perspective drawings this week from Stoel's teachings.  

Process:  On Monday in class, we talked about how a story is related to the design process.  A story and the design process both must start out with thoughts that lead into ideas.  They both have a beginning, a middle, and an end.  Both use creativity and deep thought.  Both use writing of some sort or even drawings.  Both use many steps to get to the end, the goal.

Here is a list of ways in which a story and the design process are similar.  Writing down thoughts and brainstorming are the first steps in the writing process.  After I wrote these down, I wrote an article based from this list.

Portfolio:  All IARC students know exactly what a portfolio is and what it means!  When we hear the word portfolio, many of us IARC students gasp and roll our eyes because we know how important and significant a portfolio is.  Our portfolios hold all our drawings and drafting from the beginning of the semester and we turn them in to be graded.  They hold value to us because we are proud of our work (or at least I am).  

I drew my black portfolio that holds all my drawings.

Periphery:  Periphery is the external boundary of an area.  It gives us a sense of limit to how far we can go or separation between two different areas.  For cathedrals, the outskirts are the outside structure of the building.  It tells you that the area inside is important because it is protected by the walls of the cathedral.

I drew a view from The W Hotel in New York City of a building that shows its periphery or the outside of the building that gives boundaries to the inside of the building.

Summary:  A portfolio can be the periphery to what is inside.  What is inside includes many perspective drawings along with others that show process work from the bond practice to the vellum finals.  In the end you have what is a professional look to all your final drawings that you drew.

Monday, March 16, 2009

My thumbnail hung up at HPU for the DATS Symposium!

Cardboard Man and Cell Phones

I Met Alexander Julian!

Alexander Julian came to High Point University on March 6, 2009.  All of us IARC students went to go hear him speak since HPU is only about 25min away.  Alexander Julian had quite a bit to say about his career.  He is a well known designer who has designed many things from clothing to furniture to restaurants to the Knights Stadium in Charlotte, NC.  He has won many prestigious fashion design awards in the United States.  I was really interested in how he could come up with a pattern for clothing just from looking at a building and its colors or looking at anything for that matter.  The shirt he is wearing is from a painting he did and then printed it on linen to make this shirt.  I really enjoyed looking at pictures from his slideshow from his residential home because everything in his house was custom designed and very colorful.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Macro to Micro

Composition:  A composition is putting together several parts to make one whole.  All throughout this semester we have been working on one project, called translation. We started out with a story, from the story we drew inspirations, from the inspirations we made an artifact, from the artifact we made a wall for the artifact, from the wall we drew abstractions of the wall and came up with new inspirations for a passageway, and from the passageway we created a portal.  In any cathedral, the porch, court, and hearth are the parts that make up the whole.  “Plato in Philebus- forms generated by straight lines and circles, as well as the solids created by these forms in three dimensions.”  (Roth, 358)  Vitruvius forms were derived from Plato, and all the lines, circles and solids make up a composition.

Here is a picture of the portal that my group and I made.  It represents the many pieces of cardboard that make up the whole composition.

Porch/Court/Hearth:  There are three pieces to the megaron:  the porch, the court, and the hearth.  A church is a great example of a porch, court, and hearth.  The porch is like the narthex because it is the entrance.  The porch is the transition from the entrance to the court.  The court is the main part of a place.  For example in a church it is where all the people sit, it is a gathering place.  The most important of the three is the hearth because it is in the center.  In a church it is the altar.  You can relate the three pieces to a modern-day home.  The porch is the front doorway, the court is the family room, and the hearth is the kitchen.  In Roth on page 370, the diagram at the bottom shows a perfect example of the right side being the porch, the middle being the court, and the end on the left being the hearth.

Here is a diagram that I drew to show the porch, court, and hearth in a small apartment style housing.

    Diagram:  A diagram is an illustrative drawing that represents anything.  There are several kinds of diagrams such as a bubble diagram, a matrix, analytical, a zoning diagram and more.  Diagrams can show different functions, contexts, exterior spaces, overall forms, landscaping, travel routes, etc.  Diagrams are used for anyone to be able to see them and immediately understand them without having to ask questions.  Plans are also considered diagrams.  Diagrams are symbols that represent something as the Duomo is a symbol to the city of Florence that says, “we can move beyond this” meaning that they can make something better.  On page 354 in Roth, the map of Renaissance Europe is a drawing diagram that shows the boundaries of Renaissance Europe.

This diagram is a context diagram for Suzanne's class that shows landscaping, topography, and surrounding buildings, streets and sidewalks for the MHRA building on campus.

Impression:  An impression is an imitation of something that makes a big effect.  When I am drawing I try to make the composition look great so that it leaves a good impression on whoever looks at my artwork.  For my group’s precedent analysis, each of us drew the Cologne cathedral.  We all focused on something different about the cathedral to leave an impression of feeling to what the cathedral is like.  I drew the basic outline of the cathedral with little detail so that I could leave the impression that the cathedral is big from far away.  Brunelleshci liked to make ordered space.  In Roth, it says, “…the columns are also as far from the rear as they are high, thus delineating cubes in space.”  Roth was trying to get the point across that the tall columns make the impression that the space gives a really big and open feeling. (Roth, 362)

This is a small thumbnail drawing of the Cologne cathedral in Germany.  It gives the impression of how big the cathedral actually is compared to the ground far away.

Detail: Ludwig Mies van der Rohe says, “God is in the details.”  You must look into the details to find new discoveries and creativity.  In Suzanne’s class we learned that by drawing small details of a building, you catch the essence of the building itself.  I feel that my small 3x3 detail drawing really caught the impression of the hand railings in the MHRA building on campus.  In the st. Sernin cathedral in Toulouse, France, the columns are very detailed making them have very delightful to look the eye.  “Leon Batttista Alberti… inserted in the text of Alberta’s letter is a sketch of this detail, showing Matteo de’ Pasti how to make the transition from the lower side aisles to the taller center nave.” (Roth, 368)  The detail on this page in Roth is an example of a small part that plays a part in making the whole.

This is my detail drawing for Suzanne's class.  It shows a close-up of the hand railing in the MHRA building.

Summary:  The porch, court, and hearth are details that make up the composition.  The composition can be represented in a diagram that give off an impression of what the composition is like with or without lots of details.  I learned that getting an overall impression of what a building is like is just as important as its details!  Macro and micro both matter!



Monday, March 2, 2009

Foundations Unit Summary

In the theories unit, I learned that commodity, firmness, and delight are a part of every building structure.  You must think about these three in order to have a structure or building that looks appealing to the eye.   I now look at every building and ask myself if it has commodity, firmness and delight.

            The foundations unit is all about how systems and basic structures came about.  It is also about the meanings behind the structures and why they look the way they do.

            The Egyptians relied on the Nile river for their passageway for transportation.  The Nile however would flood a lot and materials were restricted for transporting.  Hieroglyphics are a passage to telling about stories on columns.  A great example would be the Hypostyle hall.

            Many things follow the post and lintel system.  Even today it is used because it is the basic building block for a successful, well-built structure.  It has posts that stand on the ground running vertically and lintels that run horizontally on top of the posts. Stonehenge used the post and lintel system.

            The Khufu are famous pyramids that represents the male.  Hatshepsut represents female because it is family related in the fact that it is built in with the land and born into that position.  Khufu is male because they stand independently and are on the land.  It is very welcoming because it is out in the open making it an intimate setting since the pyramids are close together.  The taller pyramids are male and the smaller ones are part of the family because the taller one has a greater hierarchy over the other family members.

            Speaking of hierarchy, chairs were made with meaning to the class it was built for.  For example, the taller ones were for high class and the ones closer to the ground were for the lower class.  Also, in the Trajan Markets for male and female, the wu wu represents a column that is a male part and an arch is female that represents the female part.  The males are columns because they are taller and have more hierarchy over the females.

            The Greeks were all about city rule, water, and localized buildings who borrowed freely as the Empires were like our modern cities. The Greeks used aquaducts to transport water into the city and it became a part of their everyday life.  In the Acropolis, there was hierarchy that had order.  The columns had order making the tuscan order the archetype/ideal, the Doric order the prototype/gets you to ideal, and the composite order the hybrid/steps to get to ideal.

            Pompeii has some of all building types talked about.  It is eclectic because it borrowed freely from others.  It is functional because of the greater diversity.  It was structural because of innovation and techniques.  It was international because it had existing stone only and borrows on language.  The baths were made of stone, mosaics and concrete and they represented a place of gathering, political speeches, and law court.  

Stonehenge is an example of the post and lintel system and it is a system that is still used today!