Category: Fall ’09

DFN 1001 12.05.09

So, its been a whole semester since I’ve made time to update this–I was that busy. I went through DFN 1001 pretty smoothly, with only a few snags (mainly physical ailments). I believe this will be one long “final review” of my first semester in artchitecture. I’ll divide this into the exercises…

Exercise 1:

This felt as though mainly a review of learning how to draw and to use basic tools and techniques, that I would find later are necessary for rendering and site plans.

Ex. G

Exercise 2:

Here we finally integrated a “model” into our projects…mine was about transforming light through material. (I’m currently redoing this one for portfolio purposes.)

Ex. 2DClose up Ex. 2

Exercise 3:

For the final phase of the semester, we chose a space in which we found a “moment of inspiration.” I chose the morning light in the space I situated my model for ex. 2. I then “enhanced” my space by adjusting the space (through a model, of course) to accommodate the morning light better than the existing site.  Before the model, there were long drawn out processes involving measurements and site plans…which were kinda fun and meditative. 🙂

Those were the three major phases that made up my first semester as an architecture student. I’m pretty sure I learned more in this short period…than the entire time I was a biology student.

Here are the things I learned first:

1. Sleep is definitely over rated, and short naps under my desk are to be appreciated.
2. There will be times when vellum is more important than eating that week.
3. I will miss my social life–however, the convenient company of studio mates makes it easier.
4. There are those not in architecture, who simply won’t get why I can’t drop everything to see them.
5. Then there are those that do. They are awesome.
6. Some materials can serve as substitutes (Xacto knife=fork.)
7. Sunsets from top of the parking deck are not to be experienced alone.
8. $.99 drinks at QuickTrip and $5 pizzas at Little Caesar’s is a sufficient diet.
9. The back of my truck is my most valuable asset.
10. Kinkos is 24/7.

This is a pretty messy summary of a semester…I’ll come back and reiterate what I can, while I have my semester off. I should really come up with a way to ensure that I start to edit this more often.

Ciao ciao,

The Architect (Almost) 08.21.09

Hello there:

In two days, I start the rest of my life (like everyone, really). In two days, I become an architecture student. I get to sit amongst a studio full of other hopefuls and do the cliche looking to the left and right of myself, and realize at least one of us will not be there in five years. Here’s to hoping its not me. Good luck fellow undergrads!

This is my first blog, but I think this will give me an opportunity to easily watch myself grow as a student of architecture. This is a sequential, five year degree with no advancement. I’m in it for the long haul and the all nighters, and I want to share my experience with others who may be architecture students themselves, or plan on doing so. I intend to post photos from studio, discuss my projects and share the insight of my peers and professors, but mostly my own (Of course. Got to account for bias). As I am a technical communications minor, I also hope that this little five-year blog project will help me as a writer.

About Me:

I am a first year architecture student at Southern Polytechnic State University, with a minor in technical communications. Before I came to SPSU, I was a pre-med biology major at Kennesaw State. Big jump…  I had plans on being an ophthalmologist (eye surgeon), but its funny how easily the mind changes. I realized something wasn’t right when I was drawing in biology, and more interested in the diagram demonstrating the Kreb’s Cycle than the cycle itself. The positive plus though, during those two years at KSU, I completed the general education requirements and free elective hours for SPSU. So over the next five years, I will be taking only TCOM, DFN, and ARCH classes (and calculus and physics).

I have always been an artist. I’m not half bad. Though recently I’ve been really into photography, and am working on some projects on the side of drawing and school.  I do mostly odd job commissions; some work for commercial offices and private buyers. In September, I will also have a booth at the 2009 Anime Weekend Atlanta with another artist friend of mine.

Why architecture?

In 2008, I took a short tour of the Woodruff Art Center and adjacent skyscrapers in Atlanta with my brother and some other architecture students. It drew me in. I realized I could easily incorporate both my need to design, as well as my fondness of science into a career. It was a quick decision. I became addicted to the idea of designing as a career, and even today, I am perfectly content knowing I will soon be doing this for a living.

I took DFN (Design Foundation) 1000 this summer, as a prerequisite to getting into the program this fall. Never had I been so excited for school. I did fine in the course, A/B average. I might post a link to the better models and drawings I did over those two weeks next week, as well as other students’ work that I found impressive and interesting.

I’ve began to read the smaller text book (The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses, Juhani Pallasmaa) assigned to the Fall studio. So far, it is very interesting. Different than I expected, as it is more about the philosophy of architecture as art through perspective than say…design and math. More subjective than I anticipated. I expect I will write more on this text when I have finished reading.

Find it here:

I have studio Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I intend to update The Architect (Almost) on those days. I am really looking forward to this project of mine, and seeing what comes from it.

Please comment!

Amanda Pharis, architecture student.