College of Design Student Blogs

April 2012 Archives

NASA: The End!

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Its over! Our semester long project prototyping for NASA is over! This past weekend our entire class flew down to Houston, Texas to present at the Johnson Space Center, it was an amazing time!

We left Thursday afternoon at 5pm from Minneapolis St. Paul and flew to Houston, Texas by way of a very short layover (which consisted of 20 apparel design students and faculty running through an airport to make our connection) in Atlanta. By the time we got to our hotel it was around midnight. Our group stayed up until 3am finalizing our presentation and prototype. The next morning we all got to our presentation sight early to make sure everything was in order, which was! Our group had a great presentation, as did all of my class! Our wonderful professors, Dr. LeBat and Dr. Dunne, gave amazing presentations as well, showcasing the University of Minnesota and the new technologies that we have.

After our presentation we had a poster session where our NASA mentors were able to talk one on one with our groups and discuss more in depth topics. Our mentor, Cory, was very impressed with what we had come up with and what we were able to accomplish in such a short about of time. Our mentors will keep our prototypes for a few weeks to take our ideas and integrate them into their work and move froward. They are also hoping to continue our collaboration, so if all goes well we will stay in contact in the future!

Below are a few photos of my trip! Pictured are me, and my group members: Kaila and Ashton.

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Lucie, Apparel Design

HOLY FINALS!

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Final projects galore! And I'm not kidding. I have literally been swamped with final projects left and right! Last week I outlined some of the up and coming assignments on my plate, complete with lists of what I would do each day. Thank goodness I was on top of things...

I basically spent the entire weekend with two of my friends studying interior design, Marie and Darien. We were literally in the studio every single day of the weekend and into the week even. It's so nice having some friends that I've made in the program because they really motivate me to push myself and get my work done.

I'm sure you're probably curious as to what this final is! In a quick summary, the freshmen interior design students each designed a condo for a brother and sister, Jay and Laurie Larsen. These people are fictional, and each student gets the opportunity to expand on they client profiles and backgrounds. After doing research and programming, we worked into schematic design and started making steps towards creating a floor plan. After that step, we selected materials and finishes for the space and we designed the front door being used. It was a long and exhausting project lasting about 6 weeks or so, but so rewarding at the same time. We turned in part one this morning and I feel really good about my stuff. Part two is creating a 3-D model of the space, and I'm sure I'll blog about that next week!

Let me know if you want to know more about this condo! I'm basically obsessed with it, haha. Check out these pictures below!

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Until next time,
Ashley
Interior Design

Spring Jam!

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So this past week was an exciting one for the University of Minnesota Campus as we celebrated the annual tradition of Spring Jam! This is a time when members of the university get together to enjoy all the great things about the University of Minnesota. Not to mention that all activities are free (and often come with free food!) Coffman Union is definitely worth stopping by at least once a day during the week of Spring Jam as there is always something going on outside!

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This year Jesse James was one of the performers and although I didn't have time to make the concert, I heard it was a great one! Also, the greeks put on their annual Ballyhoo and Greek Band Competition. The weather this year wasn't the greatest on record, but it certainly didn't keep our student body from getting out and enjoying all of the great events planned. This events get planned by students, so you can be sure they're going to be exciting.

Well, after a few days enjoying Spring Jam its that time of year when final projects are due. I'm doing my final project on a redesign of a "pocket park" adjacent to Juxtapostion Arts in North Minneapolis.

Till next week!

Eric
Accelerated Bachelor of Environmental Design - May 2011
Master of Landscape Architecture - Expected May 2013

Update: The U of M National Student Advertising Competition team placed second, .2 points behind Minnesota State University - Moorhead. We had a better book, the judges thought they had a better presentation. Could've gone either way.

So my Honors Thesis is due in exactly seven days. That's kind of terrifying. The visual product is done; I just need to do a lot of writing. My readers are being extremely understanding, because I am giving it to them on Sunday and I have to turn it in by the end of the day on Wednesday (sorry, faculty!).

I also think that I have to have my final portfolio done for Portfolio Development by next Tuesday. I've decided on 12" x 18" boards I think; I just need to call mom so she can make the case I'm envisioning...

In Advanced Typography this week, we're working on photobooks of typography in a specific landscape. I'm taking pictures in the construction sites on campus right now, and I need to take a lot more before I can call it a day!

On top of all this, my job interview at Martin Williams is on Friday at 1. Not to worry; it's not like I know half the people I'm interviewing with already (sarcasm--I totally do).

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My entry for the Office of Orientation and First Year Programs' Class of 2012 Art Contest, capturing four years of marching band within the Block M. Finished at 1:00 am last night.

So much for the senior slide!!

Patrick
Graphic Design B.F.A.

Jammin in the Spring time

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This past weekend was quite wonderful,
and it has a large part to do with the fact
that it was Spring Jam. 222910_10150170694796296_505876295_7270590_4878419_n.jpgSpring Jam is a student planned, three-day, music festival with lots of free food and entertainment. It is held on campus every spring semester in celebration of the ending school year. In the past, we have had some great performers at Spring Jam, artist such as Gym Class Hero's and OKGO, but I must say that those do not rival this year musical line-up. During the three-day festival, we had performances by The Head and The Heart, Jessie James, Prof, The Cataracs, and the New Boyz. It was a musically diverse weekend, that catered to the many different tastes in music and it was greatly appreciated by the students. Now, as much as I love free concerts and all the entertainment that is Spring Jam, I must admit that it's definitely not my favorite part. My favorite part, I'll embarrassingly admit, is all the free food! As a poor college student, living on mac &cheese everyday, a grill out with burgers, corn, and tacos is greatly appreciated!

Well, now you have something to look foreword to this coming year, it's a while away I know, and I apologize for getting you excited. But do not fret! Because we usually have some great performers come to Homecoming too, and that's a whole lot sooner☺

Have a wonderful week!
Sasenka-Retail Merchandising

NASA: Final Stretch

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Our NASA trip is almost here, in fact our flight leaves in less than 41 hours! This weekend and week has been rather insane! Our student and professor group leaves for Houston, TX to meet and present to NASA this Thursday, so there has been quite a lot to do! Kaila, Ashton and myself, who make up our reconfigurable electronic textiles garment group, have been working pretty much non stop in studio this weekend. We were working up to 15 hour days Friday and Saturday, and were in studio today for 14 hours as well. It sounds like a look, and it is, but it will be all worth it in the end! Our garment is starting to look really good! All our circuitry is sewn and the swatches that will be attached are also finished. Now we are working on debugging our system, which is trouble shooting all the electronic traces to make sure none of them are shorting out or otherwise broken. We also have to make sure we create a consumer version of our garment, which is basically where we take the technology that we used in our NASA garment, and translate it into a more mainstream product for the mass population of consumers. We plan to create a teddy bear or stuffed animal that has removable and replaceable shirt swatches that would light up or power other functions like playing a sound or music.

Here are a few photo of our garment and circuitry so far!

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Lucie, Apparel Design

Took me by surprise...

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The way my classes worked out this semester initially took me by surprise when I at last discovered that none of my classes involved any sort of paper-writing assignment. While I will say it has been a nice change in pace, my academic workload hasn't seemed to decrease as I had expected it would. Then what is taking up most of my time outside of class readings you ask? The answer is projects, some more projects, and final projects.


Overall, I would give preference to project assignments over writing papers, but it didn't take long to realize most project assignments often take a significantly higher degree of effort and planning. As classes are beginning to rap up for the semester, this week has quite the list of final project deadlines. I'll be honest and say that I could have better prepared myself for them, but so far, so good. I'm taking two housing studies courses and two architecture courses this semester, so a typical 'project' usually entails a good bit of research and learning followed by a poster presentation in front of the class. I'm pretty confident in saying that I've become quite the pro at poster design after a few years in the College of Design.

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I was lucky enough to have my good friend Lauren in my Architecture and Ecology class this semester, and finally finished up our final group project last night just in time to present to the class this morning. Above is one of the posters we made, along with a picture taken right after the final poster was made (I would describe us as a mixture of happy, relieved, and very tired). One project down, two more to go until I allow myself to start getting excited for summer break!

Field Trip

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IMG_4113.JPGLast Thursday, I had the privilege of traveling to St. Cloud, Minnesota for the Annual AIA Minneapolis Greater Minnesota Luncheon. The day was filled with a board meeting, lunch, and tours of the library and police station. To top it all off, Dewey Thorbeck, professor of architecture at the University of Minnesota and director of the Center for Rural Design, gave a presentation explaining the importance of ecological sensitivity in design. He showed us examples of his work throughout Minnesota that represented long lasting, energy efficient, healthy environments. If you are interested in the sustainability minor at the U of M, you should consider contacting Professor Thorbeck about sustainable buildings.

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After lunch, we took a tour of the St. Cloud Public Library, built in 2008. The Minneapolis architecture firm Meyer, Scherer & Rockcastle (MS&R), along with JLG in St. Cloud, were the architects for the design and build phases. MS&R has also designed buildings on the U of M campus, including the Regis Center for Art. The library was a perfect example of how local materials like granite can make the building sustainable and beautiful. MS&R did a wonderful job creating a central spine that allows for natural light in the entire library.

The luncheon was a great way to learn and network with professionals since most of the AIA Minneapolis board members are leaders in large firms downtown. I can't express enough how much involvement matters in college. Join an organization today!

Hope you had a great Earth day!

Holly
Architecture - Bachelor of Science

Working More Efficiently

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This past week has been insane. I literally tweeted the following:

Sleep. Class. Work. Class. Sleep. Class. Work. Class. Sleep. Eat. Sleep. Class. Work. Class. Sleep. Class. Work. Class. #effingstarving

The National Student Advertising Competition is finally, after a year of preparation, taking place on campus this Saturday at Willey Hall. I can't even tell you how excited I am. I've been involved in brainstorming and developing our creative concept, producing our book, and now our Keynote presentation. It's all coming together, and I really think we have a great chance this year.

I also finished PAUSE, the magazine I've been art directing all semester, last night at 1:30 am. It's finally off to print. I had a minor freakout this morning that I might have forgotten to update a caption; turned out to be just fine (it's amazing how paranoid design work can make you sometimes!).

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My favorite thing to do while editing is to throw pages on the floor once I make the changes!

In other news, I have a job interview at Martin Williams Advertising (http://www.martinwilliams.com) next Friday for a Data Visualist position! Data visualization is a developing area of design--it's all about the production of graphics for the purpose of making information beautiful. Check out this site for some sweet examples: http://datavisualization.ch. Here's the infographic I produced to be considered for this internship!

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I also made it past the resume/cover letter round for the O-Tern program at OLSON this summer (http://www.oco.com), and was required to submit an undeveloped disposable camera, full of pictures of things I was curious about. I decided I should brand it.

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As everything comes to a close, I'm not even able to focus on the things I'll miss. I'm sure the Monday after commencement, though, I'll be singing a different tune.

Patrick
Graphic Design B.F.A.

Architecture Tour

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IMG_2563.JPGHave you ever wondered what an architecture firm looks like? Well, you're in luck this week! A group of AIAS students toured the HGA offices in their new location, the Ford Center. Upon arrival, we entered the building through an exterior entrance. The original vertical factory building was built in 1914 for the assembly of Ford vehicles like the Model T. A decade later, Ford Motor Company moved to Highland Park in St. Paul to utilize an assembly line. After the Ford Center was abandoned, it was renovated by numerous companies like Honeywell and Anytime Fitness. A major historic renovation only occurred recently, when United Partners purchased the building and allowed HGA and Olson Advertising to lease a majority of the building.

IMG_2567.JPGThe windows and floor designs still capture the original essence of the building. HGA's lobby and main floor once contained the Ford Gallery, showcasing their prized creations. Removing the freight elevators and creating central stairwells were major modifications HGA did. The entire project allowed for sustainable LEED certification while abiding by the National Register of Historic Places rules. If you are interested in historic preservation, there are several undergraduate classes and a graduate degree offered.

IMG_2564.JPGOnly a few weeks left!

Holly
Bachelor of Science - Architecture

Some Suggestions

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Being a retail student and having an interest in fashion, I love looking around stores and malls to get inspiration, ideas, and a greater understanding of the retailing field. Having access to great stores and shops is important to me because I like being aware of the current trends people are purchasing and where they are purchasing them. When I first decided I was going to go to school here, at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, I was a little nervous that I would not have access popular retailers because I did not have a car to drive me place to place. Luckily, after a living on campus for a few weeks, I discovered that everything was very much within reach and accessible by city busses.

So if you are like me, you're probably trying to search out some prime clothing retailers that are near or accessible from campus. Well here are some areas of suggestions to check out!

(credit: http://metrotransit.org/Default.aspx)

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•Located in downtown Minneapolis
•Stores: Neiman Marcus, Macy's, Gap, Marshalls, and lots of others
•Only a 10 to 15 minute bus ride from campus
•Bus number/routs to take from Campus: 3, 6,16, 50

Uptown Minneapolis
•Stores: Urban outfitters, Heartbreaker, Victories Secret, etc.
•About a 30-40 minute bus ride
•Bus number/rout: 6, 114

Mall of America (MOA)
•Located in Bloomington, MN
•Too many stores to list... just about everything for anyone
•About a 40 minute bus and Light Rail ride
•Take the either the 3, 16, or 50 bus numbers up to the Metrodome, then hop on the Light Rail which will lead you directly to MOA,

Well I hope that was a little helpful for you guys! If you have any questions, just ask☺

-Sasenka- Retail Merchandising

Registration Time!

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Just when things start to wrap up with classes a little thing called class registration comes around! This is that exciting (and sometimes stressful) time when each of us must pick out our classes for the next semester. Luckily all of us at the College of Design have some great advisers for us to meet with and update our degree plan to make sure we are taking the right classes to graduate (and even getting in a "just for fun" class every now and again.)

Registration can be done through One Stop. Just be sure to have your health insurance card handy as you'll have to provide some information to prove that you have health insurance. Once logged into onestop, a student is able to search for classes he or she may want to take. Occasionally a student may need a permission number to enroll. This is easily done by simply emailing the professor who will be teaching the course and requesting they send you a permission number to enroll in their course.

"OH NO! My class is full, the world is ending, what do I do?!" This is a scenario you may run into at any point in your academic career. First things first, click and add yourself to the waiting list if there is one available. Next, email the professor teaching the course to express your interest and see if they can give you a permission number to add the course even though registration says it is full. Lastly, attend the first day of class to see if a spot opens up. U of M rules require all students to attend the first day of each class. If a student misses their place in the class can be forfeited (making way for you!)

Well, now I need to actually register myself! - Till next week!

Eric
Accelerated Bachelor of Environmental Design - May 2011
Master of Landscapes Architecture - Expected May 2013

The Finishline is in Sight

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As the end of the semester approaches, the finish line is in sight. I'm so excited for the end of the semester, it's pretty much ridiculous. This year has flown by and I can't wait to put the mental stamp 'DONE' on my sophomore year of college and first year as an interior design student.

Along with the end of the semester come many, many end of the semester projects, exams, etc. For me, I'm great at projects. I'm usually pretty good at time management, and yeah, sometimes I procrastinate, but in the end I always power through. (They're not kidding about all-nighters in college.) Tests and exams on the other hand... those aren't a strength of mine. Usually, I kind of let the self-fulfilling prophecy effect set in and I prepare minimally for exams and tests, but this time will be different! I've been making flashcards like it's my job and I review my lecture notes often. I can see it making a difference already, and I might go as far as to say I'm kind of excited to take my finals.

photo.jpegHere's the breakdown of what's on my plate...
Fundamentals of Management (MGMT3001): one more group project/presentation, final exam
Multichannel Retailing (RM2215): another group project/presentation, group essay, final exam
Interior Design Studio (IDES1602): final project parts one and two (Next week I'll go more in depth on explaining this project!)
Foundations of Color (GDES1312): assignment 6, assignment 7, final quiz (this will definitely be more like an exam), and the final project

So. It's definitely scary looking at that list. I've got a lot ahead of me. But by being aware and starting early, I think I'll be alright (or better than alright). In addition to making flashcards like it's my job, I've also been making lists. I make a list for the week of everything I want and need to accomplish, then I break it down and make a baby list for each day. This is helpful because I go from stressing at the big picture to taking it one piece at a time.

Ashley
Interior Design

Studio Weekend

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This past weekend I spent most of my time in the apparel design studios working on my group's NASA project. I also had a super fun time attending the Textile Center's annual garage sale, where tons of great fabrics were on sale for the taking! I was looking especially for fabric I could potentially use for my senior line next year. For my line, I am thinking a color palette of green, blue, grey and blue (inspired by an ocean and underwater scene), so those were the colors I was looking out for at the garage sale. I was able to find a good amount of fabrics that I could use! A few examples of how great the deals are:

2 yards of blue/grey silk for $1
5 1/2 yards of black/grey wool for $5
3 yards of grey silk for $1

In total I bought over 25 yards of fabric for just $27! Such a great deal! It also was a fun time to spend with my apparel design girls early on a Saturday morning.

After the garage sale, and a little breakfast outing with the girls, we headed to studio to work on NASA! We've moved onto the final stages, which is mapping out the actual circuitry and where all the electronic components will go: exciting!

Here are a few pictures:

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Here we are testing the resistance of our conductive thread when sewn through the fabric on both sides: it works!

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Here is a map of where our thread circuitry will go! This week its onto the actual sewing!

Lucie, Apparel Design

Studying Foreclosures in Minneapolis

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While home foreclosures have historically been a national issue to both the public and private sector, recent economic conditions have turned this issue into a full-blown crisis. Widespread foreclosures have been observed in American cities throughout the last decade, dramatically increasing with the burst of the housing bubble in 2009. Minneapolis is no exception to this trend.

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While many corporate and media analysts point fingers as to who or what caused this mess, much of our coursework in housing studies has been aimed at understanding, preventing, and mitigating this housing crisis. From an economic perspective, leaving foreclosure issues unaddressed is damaging to the local economy and property values. From a social perspective, the widespread foreclosures are causing families to lose their homes and destroying the fabric of some communities. Something needs to be done, and I hope one day I can use what I'm learning here to get out there and tackle these issues.

Jesse, Housing Studies

LA: 3004 - Informants of Creating Landscape Space

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I'd like to dedicate this blog to a class that was particularly helpful as an undergraduate student. LA 3004 - Informants of Creating Landscape Space. This class was all about studying Carver County here in Minnesota (southern metro area).
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We used a program called Geographic Information Systems (GIS for short). We used this program to analyze a great deal of data about the area; everything from geology, to susceptibility to contamination, to areas which provide the best habitat for local wildlife. All of this data crunching would create maps of the area that we then used to coincide with our reports (some of which got to 20-30 pages!) I realize you're probably having the same reaction to that page number as I originally did, but trust me when I say they go quickly. You go through your "methodology" step by step and outline how you got the data and conclusions that you did. And the professor Dave Pitt helps you throughout the entire process, often staying well past when the class ended to make sure we got all of our questions answered.

The class we very helpful because I gained a higher understanding of how to use GIS (you take a introductory course in GIS prior to taking this class) and it has proved very helpful to me in my studies ever since.

Have a great week!


Eric
Accelerated Bachelor of Environmental Design - May 2011
Masters of Landscape Architecture - Expected May 2013

What's new with me, you ask??

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So today I had my very first MCAE Ambassador meeting! I don't know if I told you guys about MCAE (Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence) before, but basically it's a really cool resource here at the U that's targeted at multicultural students, though available to everybody! My interest in MCAE peaked back around the time of the Dean's Reception a little over a month ago. At the Dean's Reception I was apart of the MCAE informational session and I learned a lot about what the organization has to offer. There's things like tutoring, a place to hang out, and social connections as well as many other offerings. After hearing such good things, I knew I needed to explore what MCAE could be for me.

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Not too long after the Dean's Reception, I received an email with a job posting for MCAE Ambassadors. Basically, I took it as a sign. A sign pointing me to an opportunity to branch out, get involved, and try something new. I applied, and a few weeks later, I heard back and found out I had gotten a position!

So back to this meeting I had today -- it was a lot of fun and very insightful! It was really cool meeting fellow students at the U who also serve as MCAE Ambassadors. We talked about upcoming events and it looks like there will be a lot of opportunities to volunteer, which I love! Meetings are going to be every Tuesday, and I'm excited for what next week's session will bring!

I hope you have an awesome rest of your week!

Ashley
Interior Design

Timely Uses for Dated Tech

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I always think our typography studio can be one of the toughest sells during our tours in McNeal Hall, but truthfully, it's one of those resources that makes our program unlike any other graphic design program.

One of the most important things I tell people about our typography studio is that it gives designers a physical appreciation for the specifications we feed into InDesign. Without this studio, Twentieth Century Extra Bold Condensed 24pt. with 30pt. leading doesn't mean very much. In the typography studio, though, you get to work with the font with your hands and see it with your eyes. We gain spatial awareness skills that help us make educated decisions about typography in the digital environment.

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(clockwise from top left): Locking in our wood block typographic design with "furniture." Huge pieces of metal, wood, and slivers of copper to keep anything from moving. Coleman checks out the decorative border drawer. Thank you cards drying on the racks. The group inking their design. Experinmental prints for the Minnesota Fringe Festival!

This week in Advanced Typography, we were given the option to produce a calendar for 2013 or custom postcards. Our class unanimously decided to make postcards. The class has a lot of diverse themes, including thank you cards and making images with type alone (fish, for example). My group chose to create postcards for obscure holidays, like "No Socks Day," "Grouch Day," "Blame Someone Else Day," and "I Am in Control Day." We're very excited about this project. It involves a wood block type design that will be printed on our Washington press so that we can hand-ink the letters. After that process, we plan to print the names of the holidays over the wood block designs along with the date on our Vandercook press. This machine self inks so that every impression is perfect.

I'll share results as soon as I can. Until next time!

Patrick
Graphic Design BFA

Exploring My Options

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Last week after analyzing all of the classes required to complete my major, I discovered that I had only five classes left to take and that there was a possibility that I could graduate early. After scheduling an appointment with my advisor, I tried to work out a schedule where I would be able to graduate in the fall of 2012. Unfortunately, due to my lack of preparation, I had no such luck; there were still two 'spring-only' classes I had to take, so a fall graduation would be unlikely. However instead of looking at the downside of my situation, I decided to talk to my advisor and see if there was anything beneficial that I could do with all the free space I would have in my schedule. I began contemplating taking on another minor; I have always planned on declaring a management minor, which requires only one extra class in addition to my retail requirements. With the free space I would have, I thought why not try and accomplish yet another minor that also coincides with my retail classes. After doing research and speaking with two advisors, I discovered that I would be able to complete design minor because I would only have to take three additional classes; I declared it. Now, the year that could have been done early is looking pretty packed. However, I'm pretty glad because I think this design minor will be very beneficial for me in the future!
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Until next time!
Sasenka- Retail Merchandising

Community Involvement

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sign_marcy.jpgMy key advice for any freshman is to get involved in new activities early and often. For example, I served as the Student Representative for the Marcy Holmes Neighborhood Association my second year at the University of Minnesota. Although I was not on the Minnesota Student Association board, I acquired the position by networking with my landlord and friends. The position required me to attend monthly meetings, events, and communicate information between the Minnesota Student Association (MSA) and the neighborhood. While I attended monthly meetings, I oversaw the development of many student housing projects like 412 Lofts, Sydney Hall, and FloCo. This gave me the opportunity to better understand how architecture plays a key role in the community. The neighborhood board must approve the development before it begins construction. At these meetings, I had the privilege of hearing developers describe the concepts behind their designs, even if I didn't always agree with them.

187838_197322908429_913770174_n.jpgI bet you're wondering how you can get involved without being associated with a fraternity or sorority. If you live off-campus, start attending community meetings and activities. Most neighborhood associations send newsletters throughout the year. If you want to get involved right away, talk to your landlord or neighbors to find out more information. Neighborhood associations really appreciate students willing to better their community. Also, contact the Minnesota Student Association to find out how you can start getting involved.

Only a few weeks left!

Holly
Bachelor of Science - Architecture

NASA: Circuitry

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This past week my NASA group has been working towards creating a final prototype for our presentation in three weeks. A big part of our project is figuring out how to incorporate the electronic components into our suit as a whole. The main electrical part, basically the "brain" of our suit, is going to be located at the back of the suit. Then there are six locations on that "brain" part that need to be attached to every location where swatches are to be located. This means we have to map out, insulate, solder and sew 48 leads! We mapped out multiple options to create a good suit design that worked best for lead paths and came up with a two layer suit. The suit will have an inner layer that houses the paths for four of the locations: the two arm swatch locations and the two leg swatch locations. The outer suit itself will be the second layer, and it will house the paths for the other four swatch locations: the four chest swatch locations.

Here is an image of us mapping out swatch locations on the form. It was important for us to think about how the curves of the body and seaming would affect the paths for the electronic leads.

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Our professor, Dr. Dunne, also surprised our group today about the possibility of us writing a research paper to be published! This is huge for us, to have a published research paper before we graduate! I cannot wait!

Lucie, Apparel Design

The Things You Become Nostalgic for

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It's been a little hard walking past Northrop Auditorium every day these days. My freshman year, I spent every day either in the lobby, in the basement, or on the stage of that beautiful building preparing for halftime performances in marching band. This week, they're working on jackhammering the brick walls and foundation out. I have no idea why. It better be for some kind of expansion.

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Northrop getting all torn up as of Tuesday. It's worse today.

As much as the new bus routes through campus are pretty convenient for me, I also miss walking over Washington Avenue on the footbridges and actually hearing cars go by. Someday, much of this sound will be back, with Washington Avenue being devoted to buses, bikes, trains, and people exclusively; right now, though, it's just leaving a craving for the hustle and bustle our urban campus deserves.

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That doesn't go there...

Today at work, I was of course hungry and thinking about food. It's amazing how my diet has varied over these last four years. I've been to dinner at the residence halls with friends a few times this year, and I must say, there's some seriously gourmet food going on these days! Of course, I'm just hungry, so I'm fantasizing about all of the possible food I could eat. At the moment, I'm considering making a Facebook event inviting my friends to all get Chick-Fil-A at Coffman one more time before Commencement.

Until next week,

Patrick
Graphic Design BFA

7 Stories, 7 Minutes

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Tonight I attended an event called Design in 7. It's an annual event hosted by the College of Design and sponsored by the Design Student and Alumni Board. Over the years, the event has become kind of a big deal. My boss is actually one of the people who helps to put on the big event, so over the past few weeks I did a few things to help prepare for the event. It's always fun when I get to see some of the behind the scenes of how the plan for an event comes to be an actual thing, and I love getting to go and see the final product.

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(Fun "trading cards" with an illustration of each presenter! A nice takeaway because they look cool and they have information about each presenter on the back.)

It was a fun night, and all of the presenters did a lovely job utilizing the seven minutes they had to tell their story. Something I especially love about the concept of Design in 7 is having representation from each major in the College of Design. It's nice that the presentations are each just seven minutes because then you have the opportunity to get a peek at what another major/industry is about without feeling lost or overwhelmed.

Overall, the event was definitely a success! There was a large turnout which is always a lot of fun, and there was an opportunity to chat and network with the presenters and other attendees.

Hope you have a lovely weekend!
Until next time,

Ashley
Interior Design

Back from NYC!

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To sum it up in one word, the trip was awesome!

class@centralpark.jpgOn the first day I landed in NYC 9 hours before the rest of my classmates which gave me a lot of time to go site seeing on my own. I went to Battery Park which had a number of monuments and memorials, then Wall Street, Pier 17, 55 Water Street - The Elevated Acre, and Union Square. Topped the day off with a free bbq at the hostel we stayed at in Brooklyn, NY.

The next day we went site seeing as a class to the former Brooklyn Navy Yards, Paley Park, and Central Park (which, by the way is entirely man made and originally was a swamp!) The third day we met with associates from Michael Van Valkenburgh & Associates,Terrain NYC, and an engineer who worked on the East River Esplanade to get an idea of what working in a design firm in NYC was like. Some awesome teams doing some really great work!

The last day we had with our professor we visited The High Line, Bryant Park (which sits in front of the New York Public Library), Teardrop Park, Irish Hunger Memorial, and Times Square.

Sunday was a day on our own which we spent doing some shopping and visited the 9/11 memorial site. We all agreed we liked the design very much but were utterly disappointed in the way in which some of the visitors treated it as more of a tourist attraction than a memorial.


It was a busy schedule, but i'm glad we went every where we did! Now back to school work...

Till next week,

Eric
Accelerated Bachelor of Environmental Design - May 2011
Master of Landscape Architecture - Expected May 2013

Detroit Pride

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IMG_2281.JPGWow, what a week! I had the great privilege of spending four days in Detroit this past weekend. I wasn't sure what to expect from a city that has had its ups and downs. I spent my first day touring the General Motor's Research and Development campus, which was designed by Eero Saarinen. Unfortunately, I wasn't allowed to take pictures, but please check out Michigan Modern. The next day I spent touring the Renaissance Center, GM's corporate headquarters in downtown Detroit. Originally built by the Ford Motor Company, the seven interconnected skyscrapers create a city within a city by hosting many restaurants, shops, offices, and the tallest hotel in the Western Hemisphere. IMG_2521.JPGThe success of the design may be due to the creation of public and private space by creating large communal areas and small coves. Similar to Walt Disney's EPCOT concept, Detroit contains a People Mover, which connects the downtown buildings together. While riding the People Mover, I realized how bad the economy had affected Detroit. I've never seen buildings the size of Cedar Riverside abandoned. It was a real eye-opening experience. I also had the opportunity to see the abandoned Packard Plant, which is approximately 3.5 million square feet. Once a revolutionary automobile factory, it is now a haven for artists, scrappers, and urban explorers. A manmade hurricane of economic turmoil caused what now exists in Detroit.
In my opinion, Detroit has a lot of potential. The trip made me realize how much the University of Minnesota and the Twin Cities has to offer.

See you next week!
Holly
Architecture-Bachelor of Science
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AIAS Beaux Arts Ball - Detroit

Advise Me!

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With registration approaching quickly, I came to the realization that I only have one more school year left after this semester! Yikes! That's scary stuff! Recognizing that, I decided I wanted to meet with my advisor and discuss the classes I have left to take; since I don't have very many left to take, I want to see if there are classes that would be beneficial, for my professional and future career, that aren't necessarily in my major. Unfortunately my meeting isn't until tomorrow; so you my friends will have to wait until next week to see what I stumble upon.

(photo credit: http://www.clarion.edu/26004.jpg)
images-1.jpegBut since we're on the topic of advisors, I thought I would talk about the different advising resources we have at the College of Design. Firstly, there is your academic advisor; you will be assigned an academic advisor immediately your freshman year. They are a very helpful resource and will likely be helping you with questions regarding anything from studying abroad to classes and scheduling; they are great with providing you with information other resources available around campus. Later as you progress and move towards graduation, you will be given a faculty advisor; this resource is great for providing advise on internships and helping you plan your learning objectives. Lastly, Career and Internship Services; this resources is simply fantastic at helping you hone your job, interviewing, and networking skills. The College of Design has such great resources at hand so make sure to take advantage of them!

-Sasenka

Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone

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As I've mentioned in previous entries, the housing major's flexibility encourages us to venture out and try our hand at other related disciplines to fulfill one of the five areas of concentration. In pursuit of the housing technology focus and subsequent architecture minor, my work this semester has been dramatically different than what I've been use to in housing - forcing me to step out of my comfort zone and apply my design thinking skills. While transitioning from the "People, Place, Policy" framework of most housing courses was a bit confusing at first, my architecture classes are teaching me a different approach of looking at things (literally) - I think I'm starting to get the hang of it.

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Project 3 in ARCH 1281, Design Fundamentals 1, has kept me quite busy this week and the end product would probably confuse a casual onlooker who happened to see it. A running theme of the course so far has challenged us to look at everyday objects in a way that nobody else has. For Project 3, my fellow students and I were told to select an inexpensive and plentiful material of our choice, and three simple hand tools one could find around the house. We then were instructed to manipulate the material with said tools in whatever ways we could imagine - the only rule being that we aren't allowed to use the tool in the way in which it was designed to be used. Twelve prototypes of new (and mostly unrecognizable) material manipulations are due tomorrow morning, and I will tell you that it's not as easy as it may seem! Behind every good design is a long sequence of trial and error, and now I see why!

Enjoy your week!

Jesse - Housing Studies, B.S.

Behind the Scenes

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Hello all! This past weekend I had the great opportunity to work behind the scenes on a photo shoot for apparel designer Christopher Straub. For those of you who don't know, Christopher Straub was on Season six of Project Runway back in 2008. Christopher is originally from right here around the cities and has been designing his own line ever since Project Runway. He has also been collaborating with the national retailer Maurice's to design a biannual line for their stores. In other words, he is a very successful designer in the area! Going to the University and living in the Twin Cities opens up lots of opportunities like this one, to meet and work side-by-side with professional designers.

This is the third time I have worked with Christopher for his work. The previous two times I worked backstage on two runway shows he was putting on. This time it was for a huge photo shoot for his Spring Summer 2012 line. He also incorporated some of his accessories and shoes he designed for Maurice's into the shoot, which was a cool way to see the mix of his personal and more public designs come together.

Here are a few shots I took while working backstage!

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I was in charge of organizing and styling all the above looks! Notice my frantic numbering and scribbles!

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I was also responsible for steaming and keeping all these garments tidy. Assisting professional designers isn't always glamorous but you really learn a lot!

Lucie, Apparel Design

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