Monday, December 10, 2007

Leaf Drawings: Final Project

Several techniques that I chose to use include blind contour, contour, negative space, smudging, and shading using hatching. I also tried to concentrate on both sides of the leaf. This final project was quite fun especially seeing the results of each of the drawings since they are of the same leaf.

Time Capsule: Final Full Scale Model

This is an image of the final full scale model that we were required to construct. The final product would not be made of cardboard tubes but instead of plexi-glass or glass. I very kind person was willing enough to donate the tubes for my project. The tallest set is 5'5" which is about the size of a average person. I am quite pleased with this final model although it was quite heavy and large to maneuver.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Design Research: Design Journals of Countries of Interest

Japanese Style
I find the Japanese culture to be very interesting and worth learning about. One of the main reasons which I must admit to choosing to study this culture was the fact that my favorite type of food is Japanese. Every time I go into a Japanese Steak House I am fascinated with the design. I know that it is not exactly the same as it would be in the actual country because when in America it is also going to have an American sense of style also.

The Japanese Garden Journal, published by Douglas M. Roth, describes a very interesting overview of the culture's style. I was able to learn that the first main architectural style was shoin but changed and now for the past 400 years the architectural style has been sukiya. This is the style still to this day.

A traditional Japanese house, as considered by the Garden Journal, usually is known for the proportions, the integration of interior and exterior space. Japanese homes and the culture are known for a very clean look that appears to be simple and not cluttered. This is the reputation that they hold and one that I think is useful and beneficial. The typical aesthetic sense is targeted mainly towards a very sophisticated design with very minimal objects in the room. Never would you find a room that had large sofas, recliners, several lamps, a television, and all the things that us Americans typically place in our homes. This culture lives very minimally when it comes to the furniture and accessories that are placed within a room. Something that we are used to that they also take advantage of is the futon. They mostly use a futon as their bedding system. Bamboo flooring can mostly be found in the Western part of Japan although it can be found throughout the country. A typical door and window system is known as the Tategu. This is basically known as the sliding doors and windows that can be found in a Japanese house. As for the site/location as inspiration possibly depending on the overall location of the culture because like stated above depending on the region different materials might be used and different resources can be called upon.

Source: Journal of Japanese Gargening,

Swedish Style
Setting a high standard for itself, the Swedish Style of Design has to compete at a international level. The section of the blog will concentrate more closely on industrial design instead a residential concentration. As stated by the source, the Swedish government decided that the year 2005 was the year of Design. With this said it was financially backed with Ministry of Industry, Employment and Communications, and the Ministry of Culture.

In Sweden there are two main divisions of designers including industrial designers and free artisans. Some contributions to this division is the new use of materials and an introduction to different manufacturing technologies. This was all happening in a period in the 1950's.

Interior Design of Sweden concentrates on capable designers who have made themselves associate themselves with larger furniture companies. Now though some designers are teaming with smaller furniture design firms because they tend to focus on a more functional accessories.

This journal states that all Swedish design has several things in common and those as directly quoted "are the result of ergonomic judgments inseparably blended with aesthetic considerations." Also quoted that "everyone seems to agree nowadays that beauty is also a function." I actually find this second statement interesting and also the fact that I think that I agree with it. I do think that beauty has a large role and should be taken as seriously.

One aspect that I think Sweden design is known for is "The Nordic Light" and how it is applied to simple shapes, light colored wood furniture, pale colors, and textiles that involve checks and stripes. Swedish design is described as over-decorated and quite rational. Swedish design in the industrial sense should actually be considered international design.


Australian Style
The design style for Australia is a wide range of different designs. One thing that most designers and architects have in common is that they have similar inspirations for their designs. When looking at the buildings we are able to see the history of the culture. Depending on the location in Australia the style of design is can be different. A modernist style of architecture can be found in the northern part of New South Wales, throughout Queensland, the Northern Territory, and the Kimberley. For example in Western Australia the architects are more concerned with their structures not disturbing the natural environment.
Most of the structures built had to have considered the climate very greatly.

A quote that I liked from this source is, "Architecture... one word... countless possibilites. It can delight of disturb, change our lives, and finally outlive us... So with a leap of faith, we put our trust in the mind of the architect." Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Program Transcript of episode 1 of Keeping the Faith

The main thing that I found while researching was that the care of the culture's history is very important to the designs in which they come up with. I think this is special and very interesting. A famous building that we all know is the Sydney Opera House.

Source: Australian Government: Culture and Recreation Portal

Friday, November 30, 2007

Definition of Sustainable Design

Dictionary Definition: the art of designing physical objects and the built environment to comply with the principles of economic, social, and ecological sustainability.

My Working Definition:
Elizabeth Redmond considers a sustainable design to be when you use the energy that humans already put off, meaning their kinetic energy, and use that towards a design that would take advantage of the energy and actually use it. She has designed an installment for sidewalks that uses the energy from people as they walk across and play with it. She designed this installment to function off of the wasted energy that we humans use by simply walking.

LEED is known as the The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. They provide builders and constructors with the appropriate tools to build environmentally friendly structures. LEED is all for the green houses that are built in a sustainable manner. The image below is of the Ripple Rock Elementary School who hired the LEED company to help build them a sustainable school. The ventilation system was designed so that the air flowed slowly instead of just blowing into the rooms. This helped with the reduction use of energy. LEED would consider sustainable design to reduces the energy used and to use it wisely.


Matt and Tina Ford, designers and architects, have designed a series of homes that are site specific for Houston, Texas. These homes have been designed in a way that they retract the extremely hot heat that the sun gives off in Texas. The purpose being that they are trying to reduce that amount of air conditioning that is being used. The walls have been described as having a tin foil effect wrapped around the exterior. This being the device that makes the sun bounce back off and not bring heat into the house. The singles on the roof do the exact same function. Matt Ford has been quoted saying, "The greenest thing you can do is a tight design." With this he is means the best thing that can be designed in a sustainable way is to design everything in a way that energy is being used in an efficient way. Take advantage of the power that the sun gives off, reduces the energy that is being used in side the house.

Gensler Architects are all for sustainable design. They are known for designing the first office building to be considered a green design. They used raised flooring, air systems beneath the floor, natural day light, a natural ventilation, and shading done in a solar manner. I would consider this to be their personal definition and approaches to sustainable design because they seem to use these techniques to accomplish a sustainable design. With this said the considered using good quality air indoors when they designed dwellings.

The drawing represents the perfect house by the standards that the Sustainable Design Group has created. As labeled in the picture of the house they suggest to use solar panels, a solar oven for the kitchen, a rain water collection container, a waterless toilet, solar hot water, a compressed brick wall, and a natural ventilation cooling system. The Earth Home and the company which created it claims that they offer affordable, comfortable, healthy, durable, hurricane and earthquake proof, fire proof, fire proof, termite proof, energy efficient, self sufficient and environmentally sustainable. Through all of these words is how this company considers sustainable design to be defined. I actually can not imagine how it would be to live and function in a house like this. It would be quite a change from what most of us are used to.

The General Services Administration's Sustainable Design Program defines designing a sustainable dwelling as the reduction of the consumption of non-renewable resources, the minimizing of waste, and a creation of a productive environment. Their mission is to basically better the environment through several different tactics that include water conservation, and better the quality of the indoor environment. They also consider sustainable design to reduce all of the negative aspects of the environment.

HOK, a design firm that displays sustainable dwellings, claims that they please their clients through a environmentally responsible design. I have found that most of these companies and firms all have the same approach to sustainable design because they are all for bettering the environment. Like the others researched above HOK has certain goals that define their approach to this situation. They included limiting the consumption of resources, improving the building performance, and promoting health.

"Nearly a hundred years ago we made a promise-that we would act as stewards of the environment. Since then, we've been dedicated to serving our customers in a way that never becomes a disservice to our planet. We believe that, big or small, every action that safeguards and retores the environment is significant. By inspiring lasting, meaningful action we can all benefit from lasting, meaningful results."
The above quote was said by the James P. Hackett, the president and chief executive officer of Steelcase. I think by this quote defines their approach towards sustainable design because they describe it as any action that can be taken to better the environment.
Source: Steelcase brochure

The Scarpa and Brooks firm is built under the structure of a married couple. While designing a house for themselves they decided that they were going to see how they could best apply their knowledge of green design. With this knowledge they created a solar powered structure that looked like a very high end design but also a house that paid very little bills because of the solar power. This couple sees the solar architecture to be the solution to sustainable design, also known as green design. Their definition would be that sustainable design would be taking the advantage of the sun and benefit from the energy it puts up.

An artist named Vigil and his wife Brandy LeMae, a designer decided that they were going to build themselves a house and they decided that they wanted to be sustainable and environmentally friendly. They describe sustainability to be using materials of the environment and not using by-products instead that will gradually destroy the environment. This couple also used pre-cut and manufactured wood. I think their approach is a very useful approach and I think others should take more advantage of it.

Orthographic View of Time Capsule

I would have to say that this was one of the most difficult orthographic views that I have ever done. It took many hours to complete but it was worth the time. Although now I am quite proud of it. The top image is consists of the front view and the top view. The bottom image consists of the right side view. The scale that I used for the orthographic drawing was 1"=1'0".

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Perspective of Time Capsule

With this drawing we were to draw our time capsule in the location that we have designed for it to be in. My location is on the second floor of the IARC building right next to the water fountain. The image above I would have to say that it is not as clear after being scanned into the computer. The original is much better.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Reflection of Time Capsule Project

I have really enjoyed this project so far. I think that it is a great idea to have some form of memorabilia that the first year students can remember their experience as a IARc student. At this point I am quite fond of my project and excited about the final product. What I can tell from other students is that there is a wide range of ideas about what the final time capsule will look like. I know of one person that I think is making a digital time capsule which I think is pretty neat because in our time now we are technologically advanced and I think having a electronic time capsule will show us in the future that even thought the technology has changed we were still pretty advanced at the time. I also like the fact that some people ideas are six feet tall and others are no more than one foot tall. At this point in time I am quite impressed with everyone's ideas because they all sound very interesting in their own way.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Design Research: Graphic/Media Design

Harris Teeter Catering Brochure
I appreciate the colors on the brochure because they are rich and they all seem to work together. The colors resemble the foods that are being displayed in the images. Inside the brochure are about twenty different images of platters that create several examples of vertical datum lines. For some reason I was really drawn to this brochure I think because of the colors and maybe the food. I believe this brochure was designed very well.

JCPenney coupon
I like the fact that the information for the sale is enclosed in a gift bag image. The thing that I do not like is the gray background. I don't know if it is supposed to look like glitter because the first image that came to my mind was the fuzzy screen that appears on the television when the connection is bad. The gray seems too dull although this does help the red gift bag to pop a little more. This coupon is representing a holiday sale and so I guess this is why the background is silver because I guess some people consider silver to be a Christmas color. This to me is not a Christmas color in my opinion.

Majors of UNCG
This is a magnet that is meant to remind students of a career fair that UNCG was going to have. I am able to see several sets of datum lines, both vertical and horizontal. The top of the UNCG symbol and the top of the lighter blue polygon create a datum line. Also the text in the light blue polygon and the text directly below create datum lines. The color choice coordinates to the school's official colors. The major thing that I do not like about this graphical design of the magnet is the digital looking arrows pointing to the statement "Save the Date!" I think this is the most irrelevant thing because just just do not seem to fit in. I think the magnet would be much better if the arrows were just removed.

A Weekly Planner This piece of paper is supposed to function as a weekly planner that organizes the events happening through out the week. I was drawn to the planner when I first bought it because of colors that are used. They are very bright and happy colors. I like the reoccurring circles through out the piece of paper. The thing that really bugs me is the horizontal bands of color that separate the different lines to write on. I have found that when I am trying to write on this I have a hard time seeing what I have just written because of the dark colors in the background. I think this would work much better if the colors where faded almost to a point where we could barley see them.

Durable Foil
This graphic was attached to the top of the container of which my mother bought. Personally I do not understand why they chose the colors that they did. The only reason that I can think of is that they are the primary colors. The label has the ellipse, that contains the picture of the product, mimicking the shape of the plate in the main picture of the food. The entire label in fact has several different ovals or ellipses that have some form of unity throughout the entire label. I think the large image being centered and in the background works well but I think that it would have been better if the food was displayed in the product in the main picture.

Seven Devils
This brochure in my opinion is well designed and planned out. The color scheme has been taken with inspiration from the fall colors of the trees in the picture. This is found on the front cover on the top half. The layout on the inside folds are designed in a way that the viewers eye starts in the top left corner and ends in the top right corner. The order of the eyes is as follows: top left down diagonally to the bottom right over to the bottom left and then diagonally up to the top right. Another aspect that I really enjoy is the faded image that has been placed in the background on the inside page. This seems to make the text pop right off it. The entire brochure I believe is equal between pictures and text. There is not too much of either one of the two.

Goody's Advertisement
This article is meant to inform shoppers of the up-coming sales that Goody's will be having before Thanksgiving. The color choices of the ad are red and green with the purpose of this being that it is time to start shopping for Christmas gifts. The ad was designed with at square centrally located that was divided into four squares. Four different types of apparel and accessories are presented in the four different squares. The four topics being men's apparel, women's apparel, junior's apparel, and shoes. I think that it was smart to organize the different categories of apparel into this format. This way easily shows the shoppers what Goody's offers. Besides having the large square on the page it is also filled with large writing about the sale and large writing stating the store in which is holding the sale. Making the text large helps catch the shoppers attention. I think Goody's did a good job of advertising their sale and I am glad they did not place too much information and images on the ad.

Holiday Help
This business card was handed to me as I was walking across campus. There are several aspects that I like about the business card. I really only like the layout, the colors, and the format of the card because with the information presented I am still unable to decipher what the card is trying to advertise. The lime green background color definitely would catch ones eye. I also like the contrasting colors used for the text. Both the white and the black text seem to pop off the green background pretty well especially since they were alternated between the change in text. I enjoyed the business card being in a portrait format instead of the typical landscape format. Other than not knowing what the card was supposed to be telling me I think the card was designed well.

Magic Mountain Mini Golf
This informational brochure in my opinion is not designed very well. Right in the center of paper are the words "super video games". I do not think this text needs to be as large as it is. The video games are not the main attraction at this location. The main attraction is the mini golf itself. I think the font sizes somehow need to be switched between video games and mini golf. I do have to admit that I think the green and the black work well together on the brochure. It is simple but it still catches your eye. The image of the dollar bill at the top is not a good image because overall it is too dark and the text that is placed on top can hardly be read.

Real Estate Sales
This brochure that is meant to advertise a real estate company that rents cabins. I think the colors of the brochure are way too vibrant. The yellow and blue are the only two colors that seem to go together and they don't look too great in this situation. The only thing that I like about this brochure is the images placed in the center. I like the grid of four pictures because it looks uniform and clean. The smaller thumbnail sized images that are centered in the middle of the larger four add a nice touch. They do not seem to be interrupting the larger images. The larger images are of landscapes and the smaller images are of the rental cabins. I think that I would have made the larger images of the rental cabins if this is really what they are trying to profit off of.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Layout devoted to different learned styles

Different drawings of Tiffany

We were to chose four different techniques that we had learned through out the semester and display them as we learned from our composition portion of the class. I enjoyed combining the different things that we have learned and putting them into one project.

Le Corbusier

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Time Capsule

Thumbnails and Prototype of the Zine

This is my prototype for the zine that I made for the process of the time capsule project. The actual page in the zine changed some what.

The is a zine of my process so far on the Time Capsule project. It starts in the beginning and ends with my final idea. The final idea has a clear tube assigned to every first year student who would then write a letter to themselves on translucent paper and role it up and place it in the tube. The groups of four represent the groups that we would work in throughout the semester. The sculpture would have a ground level light installed under it that would shine up through and on the paper. The light would help show the writing and but not completely reveal it.

Drawings that have been touched up

I actually went back in and added some more contrast and now the cube actually looks as if it has a hole going all the way through.

Shadings of refined iterations

These are drawings of my refined ideas. My favorite idea is the bottom one that has the clear cylinders. The cube at the top is supposed to have a hole completely through it but this is hard to tell from the drawing.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Shadings of Cubes

I enjoy shading and for this assignment we were to use three cubes that we made and shade all of the shadows that were created on and around the cubes. The original works are much better than the scanned images.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Shading Assignments- Second Set

I chose to post all of my drawings instead of the ones that I felt were best because I appreciate seeing all of my work. Due to my shading the images here do not look the same as the originals. I found these drawings that were done in ink to be a somewhat difficult because the ink is more permanent and you have to rely on the density of the lines instead of the actual shade. Personally I still think I need more work with the hatching, cross-hatching, and random shading techniques. I do still think that I am best at the smudge technique. Before this was really what I thought that shading was but now I know that there are multiple techniques that can be used.