Monday, February 16, 2009

Parts: Whole

"Thus the personal order of nature appears in nature as much as in buildings and artifacts." (Alexander, 309) From that I realize that order is the source of everyday life. We as humans all have a rather standard order in which we go about our day. Although things may sometimes be "out of order," for the most part our world and everything in it is organized around order. In relation to design, order is one of if not the most important aspects. When designing something, there is a process that we must go through to get from point A to point B. Our project that is currently underway in Design Drawing is a great example of this. We first had to create floor plans of our given building. From there we went on to create thumbnails of important features that outline the building. Our next step is to refine those thumbnail sketches and get more detailed in what we see. The ending result will be a presentation of the information we have acquired by studying the building. Just the same in drafting, we have been gradually advancing in the creation, construction and visual recording of Pat's chair. From our fairytale stories that we received on the 1st day of class this semester, we are still building from the artifact project now in which we are creating pathways still relating to our fairytale and creation stories, but also moving to new concepts. The idea of order also makes me think of archetype, prototype, and hybrid because this combination of words is the process that establishes order. The archetype for our translations project is the fairytale. Taking inspiration from that story, we began to develop more ideas and create the prototype which in this instance would be the artifact that evolved from the story as well as the design process. From the artifact or prototype, then developed was the hybrid in which we had to progress from the creation of the artifact to creating the special place for it as well as embarking on something new in creating a wall frame. In drawing, we are using the same concept of archetype, protoype, and hybrid to develop our research and understading of the MHRA building. The same holds true with Pat's chair in drafting. From the archetype of understanding what the requirements and materials were, we then created the prototype which was the actual model, and now we are in the process of creating the hybrid which in this case is the different drafting drawings and elevations to better understand and even improve our intial ideas. The thumbnails that we were assigned to create for Suzanne's drawing class enables us to understand the entourage or interior/exterior surroundings that inhabit our building. Being an interior architecture major requires a keen sense of how to interpret and understand our surroundings and how they interact with everyday life.

“It started as a big idea, and in the process of designing it grew even bigger.” (Thomas O'Brien, Think the passageway phase of found in translation, the idea of creating a functional passageway forces me as the designer to think about how a person experiencing the space would feel and how the entourage of materials, shapes and scale would influence their overall connection to the space. As Winston Churchill once said " we shape our buildings; and they shape us." Alexander goes on to ask "how do they affect us." (Alexander, 372) I feel like that is the question that we as designers need to ask ourselves. We should work to convey a way of feeling whether positive or negative that makes sense and relates to the space, and world around us. Hierarchy plays a big role in convey a feeling or marking importance. In making my 3 models for the pathways portion of the translation project, using heirarchy was an important factor in two of the three models. In balance, the heirarchy was important in that the taller walls communicated a new element of progression and advancement through the space. In gradient one of my main concepts was not just to create a gradient of colors but also to create a gradient of size(relatively a progression from smallest to largest or vice versa). The hierarchy of the linear element as well as the taller planar elements in comparison to the smaller gave that illusion. In both hierarchy not only showed levels of scale and importance, but it also acted as a part to the whole. "A natural hierarchy is simply an order of increasing wholeness" (A Brief history of Everything, Ken Wilber) Sources are a good foundation for things to come. The can act as an archetype in which they can give us inspirations and ideas of how to incorporate things in our own work. In finding 5 different sources that give us variation in how we sketch/draw, I found that my style is very similar to some of the artist and very different from others. With the 1st floor sketch of the MHRA building, I used Helen South's technique and found that I wasn't very successful in trying to do it just like hers, but when I added my own technique and put a touch of her style in it, it was successful. "The past is for inspiration, not imitation, for continuation, not repetition." (Israel Zangwill, Think, 1)

Through sources we are able to create an ordered design that takes from the past, draws from the present and innovates the future. We highlight important structures and objects by using hierarchy to convey importance. By using archetypes, creating prototypes and eventually making hybrids we understand the cycles in which we create design and entourages.