Friday, April 29, 2011

Blog Post 14

For this blog post I am going to name and describe my favorite object, space, building, and place.  This goes off of what I have been learning through out this whole semester in History and Theory of Design.

Object:  The object that I am most inspired by is my mac book pro laptop.  It inspires me so greatly each and everyday because of all of the many features in possesses.  I can do nearly anything on it.  It holds all of my music, my photos that make me think of memories, my documents and things that I have typed.  It also is something that causes me to explore new ideas and thoughts by going on the internet.  I am able to research things and learn about something new each and every day.  It also is where I am able to go on facebook, where I can socialize with others and write about what I am feeling.  I am also able to use video chatting on it to reconnect with people that I may not get to see very often.  It literally has endless things to do on it, which is why I spend much of my time on my laptop doing one thing or another.

Space:  My favorite space is actually on the UNC-G campus.  It is the fountain located behind the EUC that has lots of tables and chairs, and even benches around it.  This is my favorite space because when I go here it is usually to relax and gather my thoughts or to just sit down and socialize with a friend.  The waterfall creates such a calm and peaceful feel to the space making you feel disconnected from the world around you.  When I am here I often get the feeling that i'm somewhere else that is not on campus.

Building:  The building that I admire the most is that of the Falling Water house.  Ever since I went there on the class trip I have been so extremely inspired by it.  It made me think in a whole new way about design and it really broadened my perspective of design.  I think it is just such a greatly designed house that has so many wonderful aspects to it.  This is a place that I would love to go visit again and again.

Place:  The place that inspires me the most would be Boston, Massachusetts.  This is because ever since the first time I traveled there for a vacation I was just so amazed.  I think it is such a neat city, it is large in size yet not to big.  It is just perfect.  If it were up to me I would want to live there if it wasn't for the cold weather.  I think there is just so much to do there and so many places and things to see.  This is why you really need at least a week in order to see the main parts of it.


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Unit Summary Three

I think that this unit is titles explorations because of the simple fact that exploring is exactly what we did.  We explored many new places, thoughts, ideas, and buildings around the world.  This unit had a lot to do with discovering new things and generating new ideas or concepts.  Things weren't always like how they had been in the past either.

As this Unit 3 first started we began by learning about the World's Fairs.  These world fairs had many different design ideas that come from all around the world, hence the name of the title "worlds fairs".  There was an evident design struggle between gothic and classical.  This statement was presented "the right question to ask, respecting all ornament is simply this: was it done with enjoyment?".  The worlds fairs was like a collaboration of worlds into one piece or on place.  The purpose of them was for *commemoration*- to recognize major anniversary's  *commercial*-supported by governments and big businesses. *collaboration*- competitive, uniting, and international. *celebration*- to indicate world events, interests, and changes.  The advertisement for the fair had a fair, festival, exhibition, exposition, and expo.  
this is the World Fair in New York.

Surface vs. Substance was discussed this first week of the unit.  To me this means that some things appear to be great and well designed when really they have no substance to them or no backbone.  For example something with substance would be a artifact that was designed and took a very long time to make and went through many steps and processes in order to complete the final piece.  Something that is surface only looks good on the outside, therefor, it was probably thrown together quickly and may look just as good as the other, but it has no substance to it.  It will not last long or have as great of value.  This makes me think of things today. Things that are designed in todays society do not have nearly as much substance to them as they used to.  many objects or things in general do not hold up or last as long as things that were built decades ago.  This also goes right along with the two views of design.  
this is a well designed piece of furniture that has substance.

The art movements of this time were that of the art nouveau.  This was from the 1800's to the 1920's and known as the "New Art".  This art design let ones eye flow easily from one place to another.  It started in France, Belle Epoche, then went from there to Italy, Germany and Australia.  It then went on to influence things in our country, like skyscrapers and such. 
this is from the new art movement.
Modernisms was the next thing I learned.  Modernism was known for form and freedom of expression.  This is what made houses and buildings look different from what was known to be the normal or standard way of doing things.  To me modernized things were unique and new and exciting.  Although many people did not agree with this.  Some people would rather stick to the traditional way of making things.  Modernism has five aspects to it and they were arts and crafts, art deco and art nouveau, bauhaus, classical revival, and decorators.  Frank Lloyd  Wright, Charles Le Corbusier, and Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe were all modern designers of their time.  Not only were houses and buildings being made modern, simple things that go in them such as chairs were becoming more modern as well.  
this is a modern design of a house, shown in the Robie House by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Next the discussion was on interior decorating.  There became a need for interior decorators during this time.  This was mainly because of the suburban homes.  The first interior decorators were in fact all women.  Men came along as decorators not too long after that. 
this shows interior decorating in a home.
Scandinavian design was next introduced.  It was known for simplicity and functionality.  Modernism was a key aspect in the Scandinavian design.  Things were designed that served a good purpose and were generally inexpensive, making it so that nearly anyone could purchase the designed pieces.  Something that the Scandinavians influenced was that of some very simple and basic chair designs.  
Scandinavian design influenced the design of this chair.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Blog Post 13

Scandinavian Design Influencing Chairs Of Today!
I think that the importance of the legacy of Scandinavian modern to design that is present today is that of it's inspiration on chairs of today.  This is because the Scandinavian design was mainly focused on being modern but simple at the same time.  The chair that I think it is important in for influencing is the Polyprop chair designed by Robin Day.  The chair has a very simple design, it consists of just a basic seat attached the the back all molded into one piece.  This part is made of injection-moulded polyproplene which is a very basic material.  The legs are were easily made and attached to the other part.  They legs were made of tublar steel.  The scandinavian design was also know for it's functionality.  This chair is definitely very functional and serves a distinct purpose.  All throughout my years of school, I remember it being in most of my classes and in other places throughout the school.  It does a great job at serving the purpose of a place for students to sit long enough for them to be comfortable enough to last through a class.  The chair is also very inexpensive and nearly anyone could purchase it if they wanted to.  This is very similar to the Scandinavian design.  Therefor, I think that this influence was a very strong one and will continue over time. 

Extra Credit Assignment

Being Formally Trained and Having an Educational Background
Learning On Your Own From Experience

After comparing and contrasting the two of these very different points I learned many good and bad things about each one.  If I had to chose out of these two which would be best I would have to say that having an education is best without a doubt.  Although you do not have to have one to be a good designer, I still think it is necessary.  It would not be very fair for someone to have not gone to college and someone who had to be doing the same exact thing.  One of the two people had to put some much more time and effort into what they were doing and they got so much more experience.  I however do think that an individual can be really good at designing things and have an eye for it, but that doesn't mean they shouldn't go to school.  You can only grow and get better each day by learning more and more and getting that actual hands on experience.  I know for me I have already learned a countless number of things this year alone in the interior architecture program.  All of this is stuff I would of never been able to learn if I wasn't in school.  Schooling really teaches you to think outside of the box and it pushes you far out of your comfort zone in a good way.  Another good aspect of getting an education is that if you were going to apply for a job and someone without an education was also then you would have a much better chance at getting the job.  Not only would you have a degree and certification and plenty of teaching and hands on experience, but you would also be so much more knowledgable when it comes to talking to the person who is interviewing you.  Interior design is a subject that you can't learn by just reading some book and taking notes, you have to actually learn from experience and doing hands on activities.  Such as drawing and drafting.  I do believe that taking a holistic approach to design is a good thing, because everything usually does have to depend on the other and wok together to create the whole thing.  This is why I continue to believe that having an education background in design is going to set you up for a much better and future in the work force.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Blog Post 12

The Cell Phone
The object that I selected that I think represents "good design for all" is a cell phone.  This is because there are so many different kinds ranging from free to hundreds of dollars.  The reason a cell phone is designed for all types of people is because anyone can use it and is able to use it if they try.  Although, this may be harder for some people than others.  They have made phones today that are very user friendly, with all of the basic features very straight forward.  They also have phones known as smart phones, such as a blackberry, droid, or iPhone.  All of these are much more complex and have many more features than your basic phone.  These are designed for people who need there phone for many purposes.  These are able to do almost anything that a computer can do, such as going on the internet, typing documents, networking, and keeping up with tasks.  There are also phones designed for people who work outdoors or somewhere where they could get their phone damaged very easily.  These phones are very indestructible, they can be dropped many times and never break and even be dropped in water.  There are also phones that someone might would buy specifically for texting, based on the fact that they feature a full keyboard.  No matter what you may do or what you may want to buy a phone for, they all make calls and send text messages.  But beyond that there are numerous amounts of other features and perks to consider.  

Reading Response 12

Falling Water
This reading response was very interesting to me because it it on Falling Water.  This is a good topic for me to explore and learn more about because it is a place where I actually got to visit and see in person.  Therefor the stuff that I learn about it, I feel like I can relate and actually visualize it since I actually saw it in person.

-- it was designed in 1935
-- was for Edgar J. Kaufmann and his family
-- used for their family weekend and summer retreat home
-- on Bear Run 
-- in Mill Run Pennsylvania
-- made of reinforced concrete
-- had overhanging cantilevered terraces
-- built right on top of the waterfall
-- has a stair case in living room leading down to the actual water
-- was known as "organic architecture"
-- was built into the site instead of on it
-- has rustic, horizontally coursed yellowish stones
-- also has smooth, stuccoed surfaces on balconies and rooflines
-- windows hidden in recesses
-- indoor-outdoor rooms were created
-- rock ledges rise up into the house
-- these appear like ancient ruins
-- site is very remote and secluded in the woods
-- separate servants' quarter and garage 
-- much more forested today then it was when first built

*The pictures above are al ones that I took while on the field trip to Falling Water*

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Reading Response 11

World Fairs
After learning some about the World Fairs in class I decided that it was a topic that I am interested in and I wanted to learn more about by reading about it in the book.  What I found to be the most interesting was that the world fairs are still held today in 2011.  This is surprising to me because I had always thought they were just something from a long time ago.

Some Interesting Facts I Discovered:
-- first one held in France in 1801
-- followed the French Revolution
-- searched for buyers of products 
-- during an economic depression
-- Henry Cole's organized one that was held in 1851
-- it took place in a Crystal Palace
-- Sir Joseph Paxton designed and engineered it
-- Crystal Palace was made of thin, lightweight elements
-- all assemblage was on site
-- it held its structure by tension wires
-- compression and tension forces were made visible like no other building had done before
-- had a long nave filled with exhibits, trees, and gardens
-- mass produced products and machines were on display
-- hand crafted products and raw materials represented the colonies and distant lands
-- the colonial products showed what was lost to England
-- represented modern culture
-- six million visitors at fair
-- was open for six months
-- this set the stage for much more to come
-- shows relationship between capital, nationalism, imperialism, and entertainment
-- purpose was commemorative, commercial, collaborative, and celebratory
-- it united all nations
-- there were 64 in the US
-- 191 in other countries
-- 262 all together

*The above images show the Crystal Palace and one of the event advertisements for the World Fairs*

Blog Post 11

When I first read the prompt for this blog post the first thing that instantly came to my mind was Falling Water.  Having just visited this house on a field trip, I knew it would be the best thing to write this blog post about while it is fresh in my mind.  I think this house is such a great example of modernism in architecture and design because of all of the features the house has.  Because it was built in 1935, during that time no houses anywhere looked like this one.  They were all similar looking and had very old fashioned and non modern features.  This falling water house however was quite the opposite.  It was made entirely of stone like materials, making it look much different from other houses at this time.  It was also built literally on top of a river, where most houses would just be built next to a river.  On the inside there was not the traditional style layout of a house, all of the rooms were scattered everywhere.  I feel as though if I lived in this house I would get lost in it.  There are so many rooms in so many different places, along with tons of balconies everywhere.  The rooms all seemed so modern to me because of all the little details that they possessed.  The windows and doors were all very slender and the lines in them were not the same as that of a traditional pane window.  The furniture inside was very simple compared to the styles popular at this time.  This is similar to furniture today, it is much more simple with just basic elements and not much decoration involved on it.  The most modern room in this entire house to me was the bathrooms.  If I just saw a picture of them online I would assume they were from a new house from today.  They just seemed so up to date with how things are now.  The modern aspects of this house truly show how great of a designer Frank Lloyd Wright was.  He was thinking way ahead of him time, it's almost as if he knew that this type of house would be in style almost a hundred years later.  He worked so hard to be modern so that all of his work would stand out and be thought of as different and brilliant.

*all of the above pictures are ones that I took myself while visiting Falling Water for the field trip*

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Class Trip to Monticello and Falling Water!

Over the past two days I went on a field trip with all of the other first year Interior Architecture students to Monticello in Charlottesville Virginia to see the house that Thomas Jefferson lived in and also to Fallingwater in Bear Run Pennsylvania to see a home that the famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed.  Out of these two places my favorite house was definitely Fallingwater.  I loved this house so much.  Before I went on the trip I had seen pictures of the house on the outside and I thought it was really interesting looking and very well designed, I however had no idea until I actually got to experience it in person.  Just approaching the place by bus already made me have several thoughts.  I knew that it had to of been way out in the woods and secluded based on the fact that the roads we took to get there were very long and winding almost as if they were never ending.  Once I walked down to the actual house I was surrounded by nothing but nature at its finest.  Being here made me feel so disconnected from the outside world and all of the problems it may have.  When I first walked in the house it was like a whole new sense of what it actually was.  I thought nothing could get better than the outside until I walked in and saw the inside, it was incredible.  There were so many little details from the floor all the way to the ceiling.  The main room was so great in size, it completely brings the house all together.  This room could accommodate for some many functions and hold lots of people.  The most amazing part to me was walking out on all of the many balconies.  They all looked over the river.  I can imagine how peaceful it would truly be to just sit out on the balcony and relax, the sound of the flowing water below would be wonderful.  I feel like if I lived in this house I would tend to get lost in it.  There are just so many little areas and rooms in it.  That shows just how complex and greatly designed it really is.  Another cool part of it was in the main room there is glass that opens up to a staircase leading down to the actual water.  In the bed rooms up stairs there are narrow vertical windows that open up to the outside letting the noise of the moving water just flow right in the room.  This makes you feel as though you are outdoors without actually being outside.  One of my favorite aspects of this house was how Frank Lloyd Wright when he designed it tried to bring the outdoors inside, he was very successful at doing this.  Each room looks like an outdoor area with all of the stone work surrounding you.  The tour guide explained to me how the hallways are very dim lit and have low ceiling because it directs you into the rooms and out of the hallways.  This was the case for me, it did just that.  After exiting the house it felt as though my eyes had been opened to a whole new world.  It made me truly view architecture and design in a whole new light.  I think in the future it will really help me to think outside of the box and not just stick to what is perceived to be the normal or what people typically would do.  I am so thankful that I was given the opportunity to embark on this trip.  I recommend it to everyone.  I would even love to go back again and again!