2 May 2012

101 Things I Learned in Architecture School

My teacher at college is writing a book about interior design. I recommended 101 Things I Learned in Architecture School to her. A great little book by Matthew Frederick published by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (www.mitpress.mit.edu). It captures in 100 pages the essentials of design.
The basics: drawing lines. But how? I am still struggling with this and have not yet achieved the crispness I would like to see in my own drawings. There is also the issue what type of pen(cil) to draw with. The general rule is less developed ideas and concepts are expressed with thicker pen(cils).
Until I read this book, I was not aware there was a word, parti, for the general concept or idea one follows through (both for buildings and interiors) to achieve coherence and clarity. The parti of this book is: drawings on the left, texts on the right, separated by a thick black stripe. Numbers are sequential and go from the top of the page (1) to the bottom (101).
Rendering or inking is to colour or shade a drawing. Not only value drawings convey emotions better, the same goes for section and perspective drawings. Plans tend to be seen and read as factual.
Very true for interior design: if you want to emphasise a certain style, best to complement it with another one which acts as a counterpoint. I have used the same technique for taking these photos: the book is placed slightly diagonally on the vertical floorboards. This way there is a bit of movement in an otherwise horizontally edited booklet.
Windows look dark in the daytime. Daytime and nighttime feel of an interior are different. The challenge is how to convey both experiences to clients.
Standard and average measurements: tables are roughly 72 cm high. Kitchen worktops 90-95 cm. Women use an average 45 cm to sit at a table, men 38, etc, etc. I didn't know the one mentioned by Frederick, but it would make sense...   

1 comment:

  1. Great post. Sounds like the book describes some of the fundamental workings of our universe. I think I'll get a copy.

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