May 8, 2008

blog 8

This group from section 3 dealt with reducing poverty. The group chose to investigate Haiti, which I felt was a very good choice because Haiti is one of the poorest counties in the world and has exhausted most of its limited natural resources. The group proposed that the people could grow a local plant which is high in natural oil which could be then used to make bio fuel. The group did a great job of researching the plant and found that it grows in rocky soil which would allow prime land to still be used for food production. I found this solution to be very worrisome. How much would it cost to convert the nation to bio fuel and the bigger problem is making sure the people don’t use the good land for production of this plant. As I understand it Haiti doesn’t have a strong enough government to enforce people from using land for this plant. As seem in other countries when a profitable crop is introduced most of the land is used for production of that crop. The group claimed that production of this crop would not lead to deforestation because no new land would need to be cleared, but if the plant proves to be profitable the people will clear more land to make more of a profit and then even more land for food will need to be cleared.

This honors presentation dealt with improving the lives of slum dwellers, and chose to focus on the Riverside Plaza here in Minneapolis. I liked that they were able to go and talk to residents of the building to see what their issues were rather than just investigating the buildings to find were improvements could be made. I feel that it is always necessary to keep the people you are helping involved. Most of the time they know were the most improvement is needed because they deal with it on a daily basis. If the improvements that they deem most important are made they may then see the other improvements that can be made and take it upon themselves to complete. The other important reason for keeping them involved is they are the ones being affected by the changes and they should be the ones involved with change.

March 13, 2008

blog 6

What I’ve found in my very brief survey of graphic design and presentation layout, there seems to be well designed used white space in various amounts but was almost always present. The white space seems to provide a place for the eye to rest so that the layout is not overwhelming. The white space also provided a space for the design to happen within rather than just covering the whole page.
cmyk mag.jpg
print mag.jpg
Print Mag.
The examples also show that the designers tend to favor cool or washed out color to use in large amounts making the design easy on the eye. The designers use bright colors for things that they want the eye to drawn to. The designs also do not completely fill their space making more white space or just another area for the eye to rest and to help balance out the design.
here is the bad example ther is no white space and completely fills the page
View image
I Am Bored
Good web site though

March 6, 2008

Blog 5

When I first saw this blog prompt I felt completely over whelmed. I just kept thinking how in the hell am I suppose to describe myself through frameworks and clockworks. I do see how frameworks, clockworks, phenomena, and oppositions are used to describe and help explain the world, but to describe me. I find it hard enough to accurately describe myself through means designed to aid in such work; in fact I often flat out try to avoid having to describe myself. I do what to make clear that I am not talking about expressing myself; if I was there could be some major problems for me as a designer. I find it very hard to think of how frameworks, clockworks, phenomena, and oppositions describe someone. They might be able to describe whoever designed or built the framework or clockwork, but I think that they really just hint at some think rather than describe a part of someone. The ones of us that don’t have any part in the design really are somewhat forced then to contend with it.
As I though more deeply about the prompt how the built environment supports or detracts who you are. As you might guess from my above rant I sided with the built environment detracting from who I am because I am forced to deal with what is built I get little if any say about how it will affect me. This I have to say made me rather depressed to think that as an architect I will be designing things that may express what I and the client what, but everyone else is just going to be limited by it. I kind of thought I might as well become a dictator somewhere and have full control, you go big or you go home.
I then began to think of how people are in a part described by where they are from, are, are going to, and that those places are described by what is built there in large part.
To quickly test this I went to Google images and searched a variety of places, and I got images of the built environment.
Search New York
Search Las Vegas
We use the built environment to describe a place and we use places to help describe us.
This thought made me feel better about being an architect, designing memorable buildings to help them describe a place. I realized that in reality that both of these are true, and thus I have stumbled into some sort of opposition of using the built environment to describe ourselves. The limitations of the built environment are many but every day we make decisions of how to use it to our advantage including how we describe ourselves. It describes us as a species that we choose the built environment over the natural one.

February 28, 2008

Blog 4

If I was free of Architecture school I would really like to do something like what Alvar Aalto did with his summer home. Just have a nice place to be and experiment with design. Recently I have been dreaming of how nice it would be to have a large plot of land in Alaska or somewhere just to try the ideas that pop into my head. I have the feeling that most architecture students would like to be able to just start building, and do whatever they want.
alvar aalto.jpg

There are some major problems with this though. One is the fact that most of us don’t have the financial backing to anything of a reasonable scale. The other is the fact that there would be no force driving the design other than whatever interests me, and good design needs constraints to work around and flourish. So I need to think of something else to devote my design drive.
This semester I am enrolled in a relief and screen printmaking class, which I have found that I truly enjoy. I like the idea that prints can be easily distributed to a large amount of people, art for the masses. I also enjoy the challenge of how to create an image when you are limited by what can be done with relief or screen. You have to think of alternatives to what is used in other art forms or how to adapt those techniques to use in print. I also like to think of how little do I need to portray in the print for the image to make the point I want to make.

Another possible avenue for creative interest is guitar. I have accepted the fact that I will never be a great guitar god just about from day one, but for whatever reason guitars interest me any way. I am very interested in guitar design and the creation of tone. I accept the fact that I am a gear junky. For a while when I saw a guitar I could not resist the urge to tell the nearest person the make, model, hardware facts, woods used, tonal characteristics, and so on. It just interests me all the little details that go toward sculpting a tone. I sometimes wonder why I’m going into architecture rather than guitar design.
Just as a quick personal bias Gibson beats Fender

February 21, 2008














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The Green Movement Blog 3

Play List
I feel music is one of the most powerful agents in any movement. There are way more songs out there that contribute these are just the ones that I know and enjoy which is hardly skimming the surface.

Beatles Mother Nature’s Son
Jack Johnson The 3 Rs (Reduce, Reuse and Recycle)
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Clear Blue Skies
Rush The Trees
R.E.M Fall On Me
R.E.M Stand
Talking Heads (Nothing But) Flowers
Bruce Cockburn If a Tree Falls
Pixies Monkey Gone to Heaven
Joni Michelle Big Yellow Taxi
Julian Lennon Saltwater

February 14, 2008

Blog 2

There are thousands of social problems, but there is one problem that is common between all of them. For the most part nobody is doing much to change or fix these social problems. I feel that there is no greater problem with our society than general unwillingness to better our society.
I came to this realization after trying to think of a social problem that I would like to write about. The more I thought about it the more social problems I thought of, and every single one was worthy of just as much attention as the last one. In every case there was something that needed to be done. I was beginning to wonder how there could be so many problems then I realized it was because the majority of people are not acting. We all agree that poverty and homelessness needs to be eradicated but how many people are acting. Our society seems to have this belief that as long as we understand that we the problems facing our society are bad and we say the right things, that’s enough. Now I understand that this may feel like a personal attack to some people and that they are thinking up ways to defend themselves. I understand that many of us have done good thinks to help; I think that people are good by nature. Have we done enough? I am just as guilty of this as anyone else. I’ve done many good things in my life, but now I wonder if those deeds were just the bare minimum. I feel that they we because I can easily think of many others things I could have done to help. I just feel that as a society we are unwilling to put in a true effort into these other problem. That is why I feel this is our greatest social problem our general lack of social responsibility.

February 7, 2008

Blog Prompt 1

The flow of energy is an interesting subject to ponder; I have recently been reading passages from the Taoist book the Tao Te Ching which explores many topics about how we view the world. One reading that I think addresses the issue is the 25th reading, it goes like “There was something formless and perfect before the universe was born. It is the mother of the universe. For lack of a better name, I call it the Tao. It flows through all things, inside and outside, and returns to the origin of all things…? I think it is fascinating that the color of like the soil of an area can be seen in the buildings of a city and that from that a whole persona of the area can be created.
There is a connection between everything. A building can influence the building being built across the street. And as that influence continues a whole city can be built and the whole think is connected.