So being a busy-bee student has definitely been a real adventure this academic year… but what a blast and I love every minute of it.
Next week I get my final crit from Tutors for my latest project. I have been charged to design a Pavilion (full on Architecture style, from fixings to weights to construction), a bar to go in it, and do it all within a Grade I* listed site so absolutely no touching of the fabric of the building etc. I am finding that I have a bit of Brutalist slant to my work, which is very surprising given the chaotic clutter which I live in (and love)…
I realised I have not posted any work on here since I started back at Uni, so here’s a few bits and bobs I have done this year to prove why I have had no social life, sleep or spare time to post much… 🙂
Semester 1: Theatre Design & Product Design
Here I started out learning about Orthographics and site surveys. Basically if you do this type of drawing by hand, JUST as you reach the end of a drawing your hand slips and you have to either scalpel off the ink, or more usually START AGAIN…Gah! My tutor also is an architect, and knows if I am on a 0.01 or 0.1 pen so you can’t make any mistakes as he’ll know.
I started to learn how to make scale models. This is something I love doing, and think I am like Gulliver but maybe with more fumbly fingers and a tendency to superglue myself to small things…
My next challenge was to design a theatre installation inside a beautiful Medieval Hall showing an excerpt of a scene from Macbeth. This is where the brutalist streak started coming through I think… why try and complete with 600 year old carvings, go the opposite way….! I also made films as part of the design as that is something I used to do in the past for a living, and this design had no budget attached so I went all out for it…
The next project was to design a piece of modular furniture to be used in a travelling exhibition planned for the first ‘Martian House’. This will be a pod designed a bit like the Antarctic science stations for prolonged living on the red plant in 2030. I was asked to focus on wellbeing and health, so came up with a multipurpose item that becomes amongst other things gym parts with added games to spice up what will be probably be a very dull life on Mars…
Semester 2/3: Staircase / Pavilion & Bar Design
I had to present a project on the design of a staircase by a notable architect, (right down to delivering a correctly scaled model). I was given one by the architect Santiago Calatrava, one with NO KNOWN MEASUREMENTS ANYWHERE, which resulted in me travelling to Basel in Switzerland tape measure in hand. But I measured the thing and managed to build the model to scale.
Below is my last project this year, and I will know if I have been slayed by the end of June (gulp)…. I have worked myself to the bone in this one, and cannot even begin to count the hours/days/weeks/months it has taken…
What have I learnt?
Less is More and document everything! I have to justify and be accountable for every minute detail, right down to fixings and screws. I have also had to learn a huge amount of new digital skills as presentation boards are so vital; Photoshop, Rhino, Sketchup, Illustrator, Lightworks, CAD and so on. My iCloud storage is huge already as a result and I have over 11,000 photos on my phone….
I have also learnt brilliant practical skills; steam bending, digital fabric printing, woodwork, welding, plasma metal cutting, textiles, ceramics, 3D printing, laser cutting, fabric manipulation, resin and jesmonite techniques, and more. I have learnt the (new) ways of digital studio shooting in photography, (I am so vintage that I did my first degree in photography on film, and digital did not even exist!). The fabrication facilities are amazing at my University and the technical staff are brilliant, I am making them a huge cake next week to thank them for teaching me so much already.
On top of all of the practical I also had to deliver a critical blog and essays. Now I know why Uni students have/need such long summer holidays, I am frazzled but still raring to go for September this year although I think the pressure will be on even more….
Adios for now