Rewind: Year 2 – Intro to Design

Second year of architecture school had me feeling like the real deal. We were introduced to site analysis, construction types, and we were finally putting our designs out there. I’ve said before that looking back at my old projects, all … Continue reading

At Home in the Studio

Yesterday I arrived at the architecture studio a little after 5 a.m. I spent the entire day working on my project submission for that afternoon and attending my regular classes. Fast-forward to 7 p.m. and I hadn’t left the building once.

This is a recurring thing with most architecture students (as I’ve heard). There are crazy folk stories of past students who tried to sleep in the studio or hide and escape campus safety officers to stay in and work through the night (which isn’t allowed at our school for some reason).

We Make it Home

Since many of us spend so much of our time in studio, we slowly begin to make it our home. With Christmas lights, plants, toys, extra furniture, food, and many other random knick-knacks,  we turn our spaces into representations of ourselves (and our struggle).

It’s interesting to see the way our personalities shine through our spaces.

I love my studio space, even with all my layers of trace paper, pens everywhere, books, and even my studio slippers on the floor. I thrive in my messy environment. I know where everything is even though it may look chaotic.

Others, like my friend Christy, cannot work until their space is organized and cleaned (and I mean completely disinfected).

Some build furniture in the wood shop (like coat hangers and shelves), many have a coffee station by their desk (a must!), and others have a blank space with no personal items.

No matter what our desks look like it’s fun to appreciate our differences and learn from each other and the things that inspire us.

 

Music, eBooks, Podcasts, or Silence?

Some people are comfortable listening to music while they work, do homework or study. I have never been that person. I can’t even listen to classical music while my brain is trying to get into gear.

Sometime during my college life, I discovered the use of white noise combined with noise cancelling headphones for blocking out all distractions. I have to admit it is mind numbing in some way to be listening to thunderstorms for hours on end while you try to work, but it was the only way I could ever write a paper that I was actually proud of. After some hours with my headphones on, it was always sweet relief to take them off and enjoy the sound of silence.

In studio, while I glued models together, sketched, or drafted, I found that I could listen to eBooks and the time would pass more enjoyably.  I’m guessing it’s because my brain doesn’t need to be engaged as much to do things with my hands, or maybe it’s the artsy side of my brain taking over (feel free to correct my poor knowledge of neuroscience). Anyway, my preference has always been the Harry Potter books (I’ve seriously lost count of the times I’ve read/listened to them). I created a playlist that runs the whole series of 7 books back to back continually, and I love it.

However, it has got to the point where I pretty much know it word for word and I find myself wanting a change. For a time I have been considering Podcasts but I haven’t really gotten down to actually downloading any. I read an Architectural Digest that suggested their take on “Best Architecture and Design Podcasts”. After browsing around I downloaded two:

Browsing around the Apple Store I found two more that seem interesting:

I just downloaded them so at this point I have no feedback to share, but I’m hoping that I will learn a lot from them and educate myself as I am doing other tasks!

If you’re reading this, let me know if you have any podcast suggestions, or if you have listened to any of the ones I have listed, I would love to know your thoughts about them!

xo,

Steph

A trip to Chicago – My favorite things

 

This field trip to Chicago was a precedent study for mixed used projects (residential, commercial, etc.) and incorporating parking structures. This year, our senior project is to design a project with these components, and Chicago has countless opportunities for learning. Throughout the trip we walked 11 miles around the city and visited parking structure after parking structure, as well as mixed used buildings and a couple of Whole Foods buildings.

I quickly fell in love with the projects and environment around Lakeshore East. It has major components of what my architecture dreams are made of, and, though I find it incredibly intimidating, I hope to one day be a part of a project of similar impact and magnitude.

Aqua

Aqua at Lakeshore East Chicago is one of my favorite projects in the city. Not least because it was designed by Studio Gang, a firm led by Jeanne Gang and one of my dream places to work (more about my take on women in architecture to come). I am intrigued by the combination of architecture and urban design that surrounds this project. Though I didn’t go inside, I was captivated by the use of materials and colors of the facades.

 

These residential spaces below the Aqua tower have direct access to the Park designed the Office of James Burnett. A wonderful space that combines open green spaces, with water features, and perfectly landscaped opportunities for sitting and walking around.  As I experience the park, it’s hard to believe how close it is to the hustle and bustle of downtown Chicago.

In this environment there is a sense of safety, and a sense of community as joggers pass by and others stroll around walking their dogs. Though Chicago is a large city, this is a fascinating example of a place that feels peaceful an sheltered.

This year, my project will be tiny in comparison to the projects around Lakeshore East.  However, I hope that in my own way I can achieve a similar sense of shielded rest from the agitation of daily life.

xo,

Stephanie

 

 

 

Rewind : Year 1 – So it begins

2015. A simple year. My first year as an Architecture student was full of the usual, Gen. Ed. classes and the hectic running back and forth around campus. My favorite part has always been sitting at my drafting table, no matter the time of day.

1st year

Drawing and Graphics Studio was a studio to learn the basics. A gentle introduction to the tools and methods I used to think architects used their whole life. (That was a lie – Since the rise of technology, fewer and fewer Architects depend on hand drawing and rendering for any part of the design process).

Nevertheless, it was hand-drafted floor plans and sketches that first attracted me to pursue a career in architecture. I enjoyed every moment of it as I persevered through (and learned to love) the tiresome methods of drawing axonometric, oblique,

and perspective sketches. I enjoy sketching and coloring design proposals, and I hope to be able to incorporate sketching and hand-rendering as much as possible in my future career.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

These are just some of the examples of the work I did. It’s easy to look back and see all of the flaws in my work, but that’s the process of learning. The more of it I do, the easier it gets, and the more I enjoy it.

xo,

Steph

Refresh.

In between the crazy schedules of my life as an architecture student, I have permanently toyed with the idea of this blog.  The problem is that it scares me to begin anything new, unless I’m pretty sure I can conquer it. In this case, I’m not sure what it means to “conquer” a blog.

So I’m doing this for me, to look back, to learn, to keep track of where I’ve been and where I want to go.

If you’re reading this and it seems interesting, bear with me… It’s only going to keep getting better!

I’m a complete newbie to the world of blogging, and I’m a beginner in the world of architecture. I have a limited perspective but I want to share and learn from others as much as I can.

I will start by breaking down what my (studio) education in architecture.

My Studio Experience up to this point looks like this:

YEAR 1

  • Drawing and Graphics Studio

YEAR 2

  • Introduction to Design Studio
  • Architecture as Craft Studio

YEAR 3

  • Placemaking Studio
  • Background Building

YEAR 4 (Currently)

  • Comprehensive Design Studio

I want to break down each year by project in future posts, but for now feel free to browse my first ever attempt at a Portfolio (don’t laugh!). The PDF attached was my submission to be accepted into the professional program at Andrews University. It’s hopefully the first of many (better ones) to come.

I’m excited to be where I am. I’m enjoying my senior year to the fullest.

Here’s to 2 more years of college and couple more fore licensing! It’s going to happen!

 

xo,

Stephanie

Professional Program Portfolio Submission

 

 

 

Internship 1.0 – Conclusions

 

My first architecture internship lasted about 14 weeks. It has been a few months since it ended and I’m back in school for year 3.

I met amazing people and it was an unforgettable experience. It was more than I could have expected. After all, I was only a 2nd year architecture student. I was exposed to many different kinds of jobs, I worked on presentation models, helped a little with interior design decisions (with the actual interior designer), had a couple site visits, mostly worked on CAD, and even got to sketch out possible designs for a clinic.

Best of all, I can officially say I have started my AXP hours, though I still have some (most of them) to submit. I’m excited to say that I am a couple of steps closer to Architect.

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”

Colossians 3:23

desk