Saturday, May 29, 2010

shelter from the sun

Design 5: Land Art. Year three.

This was the first project that I did in Brisbane and it was so totally different from anything I have ever done before. First of all working with a place that we couldn’t visit and also the fact that the brief was that from a real competition. The project was about creating a piece of land art in the desert outside of Dubai and the land art itself was supposed to be some sort of renewable energy. The groups were told to be bold and almost vulgar since the surroundings of the growing city of Dubai is so extreme in every way we had to match that and make something to fit into the context.

Our group focused on shadows on the sand and shelter from the harsh winds and strong sun. Dubai’s wealth is created on oil so we had this idea to imitate oil cisterns but with a more modern and sharp edges as a thought and a provocation to the oil industry with its renewable energy built into the shapes. Put in the landscape they look like they have been sunken into the sand and they themselves create a skyline by themselves almost like the one of the big city.

We had a good dynamic in our group and were able to divide the tasks but also help each other out when someone was stuck. It was a stressful couple of weeks before the handing but it was a fun project to make. On request from our tutor we let him send our project in to the competition. So fun, both to send something away to a real competition and also to have that gratification from our tutors that they really believed in our project and us.

Feedback from Ian Weir:
Interesting philosophical standpoint. We get a strong sense of the built landscape and ideas behind the scheme in the presentation. You have created a somewhat apocalyptic yet intriguing landscape. The design seems to have stopped too soon. Energy story is quite secondary regarding the comments in your text: not having direct physical experience with a site does not preclude site-specificity. Many international competitions and commissions
been won by designers who have never been to the site. The key is to uncover from the available information qualities that are particular to a place/brief (its all just information)
Very good graphics - though 'sameish' - eg it is a little too reliant on the one digital model - from which you generate most of your views. You don’t make it clear enough that the red crystaline roofs are the solar PV panels. Good idea to include your design process graphics on the bottom - some explanatory text on these might help judges.

7 out of 7.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

god I wish to never see this project again.

Design- Sports Park. Year One.

Oh, the sports park project. I think this was the first project where I struggled with inspiration. I remember sitting in the library hours after hours searching and searching. I had this great idea of these beautiful mounds where each mound had a purpose but could also be used for general recreation when they were not used for football or rugby. But as everything for me in first year it just got a little bit too much… I think we all focused on the contours and for me that meant that I forgot about the design. It was in the end just a little bit too much of everything for it to work together. It was like I was too eager to make sure I had everything on the brief that it all just collapsed. Sport pitches: check. Canal: check. Artwork: check. But it didn’t flow. I remember being so scared during the crit because I was so ashamed of what I had produced. I just wanted to get away and die somewhere. I learnt a lot during this project, but again as I look through all my projects I see a pattern in my work. I do great at the beginning with beautiful and grand designs and ideas and then I chicken out, because I get scared of what people would think of me if I did something really crazy. Weird that is, that I never learn to stay with my initial ideas and be strong and confident enough to carry them through all the way.

Feedback from Ross Mclean:
The projects has some interesting ideas underlying it, such as colour theme and the interactive structures that encourage people to use the park. There is a strong sense of earthworks in your workbook but not carried through to your final design proposal. You should have more confidence in your ideas as there are several ideas in your exploration work that have not materialised or been accentuated in the final design. You should also look to strengthen the essential aspects of the landscape, such as spatial structure and hierarchy, circulation and tree structure. The plan also lacks some detail, again explored in your workbook but not carried through. Areas such as the car park and slipway don’t look like convincing or rigorously refined designs. Overall: some good exploration and development work, but lacks the final product and levels of detail.

Survey: D
Site Analysis: C
Evaluation: C
Exploration: C
Presentation: C

(When my computer broke down in the summer after first year all that I had done got lost, the image above is all I have left.)