Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Just give me a reason : Homecoming

Tuesday, 8 August 2017
These last few months, I've been doing a lot of thinking. Particularly if I have made the right choice choosing to stay in Western Australia and if this is the best decision. July was an extremely busy month and yes I did miss the last instalment of Architalks. Not only because I had nothing to write but also because I had been swept away with life.

During the last month, there was a short period of time where I  had to go home to attend the funeral of my Grandmother. It made me realise that living abroad meant that I was missing out on a lot of family events and that I was going through everything on my own. A lot of my friends had  either moved on to different states or had gotten married and had families of their own, so we had naturally just drifted apart. It made me feel like my support network had been destroyed. Most of the time I felt alone and miserable and the only thing I wanted to do was watch my drama serials and pig out in front of the screen. It felt like nothing was working out on all aspects of my life and it was terrifying having to go through it on my own. I tried many different ways to distract myself but I soon lost interest in  those things. 

The one question that I kept asking myself was if  I should just give up. But then I remembered all the setbacks that I had gone through and how far I had come since then and I immediately knew that I was not yet ready to give up and that it'll eventually get better. But for things to change I had to change first. So starting today, I plan to become a better version of myself. I know it sounds cliche but at this very moment that's the best I can do till things actually get better.

Till next time, I leave you with a quote that has helped me get through these times.


 For August, the topic of Homecoming has been nominated by Bob Borson of Life of an Architect himself and below is the link to the rest of crew.


Matthew Stanfield - FiELD9: architecture (@FiELD9arch)
Coming Home to Architecture

Lee Calisti, AIA - Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
looking back i wonder

Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
Coming home as an architect

Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
9-11 -- A Look Back

Michele Grace Hottel - Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
"homecoming")

Michael Riscica AIA - Young Architect (@YoungArchitxPDX)
Homecoming & Looking Back)

Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
Homecoming Memories

Emily Grandstaff-Rice - Emily Grandstaff-Rice FAIA (@egrfaia)
Letter to a Younger Me

Drew Paul Bell - Drew Paul Bell (@DrewPaulBell)
Looking Back...Was Architecture Worth It?

Kyu Young Kim - J&K Atelier (@sokokyu)
Homecoming, in 3 Parts

Jim Mehaffey - Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
Is It a Homecoming If You Never Left?

Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
Homecoming
Gabriela Baierle-Atwood - Gabriela Baierle-Atwood (@gabrielabaierle)
My Ode to Fargo

Jane Vorbrodt - Kuno Architecture (@janevorbrodt)
Looking Back Through the Pages

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Mentorship : mend or end

Tuesday, 13 June 2017
Whilst  I was at University, they had what they termed as a mentor-linkup session called Unimentor where they pair you up with an industry mentor and you get to see how things are done in the "real world". I found this experience extremely beneficial despite its short time frame. 

As with any industry, having a good mentor can change the course of your career, the minute you enter the working world, you naturally wouldn't know what direction your career is going to take or what your strengths are. Having a mentor simply means, having someone to hold your hand,  find your direction and offer you advise from their own experiences or it can just go catatonic and just end everything. Needless to say, finding the right mentor doesn't come without it's hurdles and it's almost impossible to find someone who shares the same values as you. It almost makes me wonder if  I would have had a stronger identity as a designer if I'd had a mentor throughout the entire duration of University degree.

With all the research work,  I am currently doing for the re branding of new blog(now official relaunch date yet), I  have discovered an assortment of digital platforms designed to help architectural professionals. However, there are very few Australian based websites and one definitely worth mentioning is 
Vanity Projects though it is primarily a marketing resource platform for architects it offers a catalog of firms seeking to hire graduates within Australia and is definitely worth a read if you're based  in Australia or planning to move here.

Hopefully, my short reminiscing has given you something to think about. I shall leave you with the rest of the ArchiTalk crews posts that was pioneered by Bob Borson of Life of an Architect


For June, the topic is of Mentorship has been nominated by Michael La valley and below is the link to the rest of crew.



Bob Borson - Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
This is NOT Mentorship
Marica McKeel - Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
ArchiTalks: Mentorship
Jeff Echols - Architect Of The Internet (@Jeff_Echols)
Mentors, Millennials and the Boomer Cliff
Mark R. LePage - EntreArchitect (@EntreArchitect)
Influence
Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
ArchiTalks: Mentorship
Jeremiah Russell, AIA - ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
teach them the way they should go: #architalks
Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Bad Mentor, Good Mentor
Stephen Ramos - BUILDINGS ARE COOL (@sramos_BAC)
The Top 3 Benefits for Architects to Mentor and to be Mentored
Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
I've got a lot to learn
Emily Grandstaff-Rice - Emily Grandstaff-Rice FAIA (@egrfaia)
Gurus, Swamis, and Other Architectural Guides
Jarod Hall - di'velept (@divelept)
The Lonely Mentor
Drew Paul Bell - Drew Paul Bell (@DrewPaulBell)
Advice From My Mentor
Jeffrey Pelletier - Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Mentoring with Anecdotes vs. Creating a Culture of Trust
Samantha R. Markham - The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
Why every Aspiring Architect needs SCARs
Keith Palma - Architect's Trace (@cogitatedesign)
Mentor5hip is...
Jim Mehaffey - Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
My Mentor
Tim Ung - Journey of an Architect (@timothy_ung)
5 Mentors that are in my life
Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
Mentorship
Gabriela Baierle-Atwood - Gabriela Baierle-Atwood (@gabrielabaierle)
On Mentorship
Ilaria Marani - Creative Aptitude (@creaptitude)
Mentorship

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Advice for clients

Tuesday, 9 May 2017
I honestly feel that this post should have been titled " so are you telling me how to do my job ?".  But I'll hold on the angst for now. I've heard a lot of clients say can you just give me the construction drawings and I'll build it myself. It's all fun and games until they start building and realise that things are not exactly working on the project. What most clients fail to realise is that architectural documentation is merely an illustration or representation of how a building should be built and an architectural project requires the continued involvement of an architect or an architectural profession.

In my opinion, I think that trust and communication make up the most important part of a client architect relationship. But most of the time this is not there and the relationship is mostly based on the fact that the relationship equates money. A sad reality of this industry. I believe it's time that we start rethinking what an Architect means to this current society and how we move forward from here.

Lastly I leave you with an illustration by Leewardist one of my favourite architectural illustrators opinion of what he thinks an Architect should be.









This post is part of the ArchiTalks series pioneered by Bob Borson of Life of an Architect. This year, we are trying to do something different and instead of Bob suggesting the topics this month we have a topic suggested by Jeffery Pelletier who has recommended the theme of Advice for clients.

Marica McKeel - Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
ArchiTalks: Advice for Working with an Architect
Jeff Echols - Architect Of The Internet (@Jeff_Echols)
Advice for ALL Clients
Lee Calisti, AIA - Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
advice to clients
Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
ArchiTalks: Advice for Clients
Collier Ward - One More Story (@BuildingContent)
Trust Your Architect
Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Advice List -- From K thru Architect
Michele Grace Hottel - Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
advice for clients
Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
A Few Reminders
Eric Wittman - intern[life] (@rico_w)
[tattoos] and [architecture]
Emily Grandstaff-Rice - Emily Grandstaff-Rice FAIA (@egrfaia)
Changing the World
Drew Paul Bell - Drew Paul Bell (@DrewPaulBell)
Advice for Clients
Jeffrey Pelletier - Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Questions to Ask an Architect in an Interview: Advice for Clients
Samantha R. Markham - The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
Dear Client,
Kyu Young Kim - J&K Atelier (@sokokyu)
Advice for Clients
Rusty Long - Rusty Long, Architect (@rustylong)
Advice for Clients
Keith Palma - Architect's Trace (@cogitatedesign)
Advice 4 Building
Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
Advice for Clients
Gabriela Baierle-Atwood - Gabriela Baierle-Atwood (@gabrielabaierle)
What I wish clients knew

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Life of an Architect Playhouse competition 2017

Sunday, 16 April 2017
Recently, I entered the Life of an Architect playhouse competition. It was a good opportunity to be creative. Even though I did not win anything, I enjoyed my experience .It made me realized that I should make entering competitions a regular basis as it made me aware that I had much more room for improvement. I also realized that I had to find a style of presentation that was truely my own.

Here is the entry that I submitted that was based around the theme of recycling.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

The Art of "Architecture of Change"

Tuesday, 11 April 2017
Recently, there have been alot of articles that focus on "showing and telling"  the Millennial Architect how they should design. One that particularly caught my attention was the article written by JoAnn Hindmarsh and Kurt Haapala about redesigning school restrooms (see link). This article was especially interesting to me since lately I've been working on the documentation of educational facilities. It demonstrated that the current architect should start considering the needs of the the people rather than  just using the "cut ,copy paste" method of designing a building. In my opinion a lot of the buildings designed in this day and age are not context specific nor do they suit the current user groups.

Since entering the industry, the comment I've heard the most was "when I was starting out the one thing I designed was toilet blocks!". I don't know what it was, but I felt that I should have expressed my opinions by saying, "that's not designing that's copy and pasting if you were designing toilet blocks we'd have plenty of different solutions by now". Time and time again, I've seen designers so reluctant to change their design just because a that design they were using has won an award or is cheap to build. I think it's time the Architect starts actually designing and not copying and pasting.

My angst aside, this article (see link) offers insight to how a school toilet block should be designed and if anything I strongly recommend you read it. In my opinion I believe that the Millennial Architect should embrace the art of " architecture of change" and start changing the way they think when designing, or we would just be proving Frank Lloyd right  when he said that today Architecture is shity! (see link).

 I've also included a list of Articles that talk about the Millennial Architect.

This Is How You Design a School for the Post-Millennial Generation in China

Hiring Millennial architects & designers & what is important to them
http://archinect.com/c4ablog/hiring-millennial-architects-designers-what-is-important-to-them

5 Architecture Career success tips for Millennials
https://www.thearchitectsguide.com/blog/architecture-career-tips-millennials

Culture is key for millennial in architecture,enginnering
http://www.lvb.com/article/20151116/LVB01/311069988/culture-is-key-for-millennials-in-architecture-engineering

This post is part of the ArchiTalks series pioneered by Bob Borson of Life of an Architect. This year, we are trying to do something different and instead of Bob suggesting the topics this month we have a topic suggested by Lora Teagarden who has recommended the theme of Architecture of Change. I talk about the changes in their design process that the Millennial Architect faces.

Marica McKeel - Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
ArchiTalks : Architecture of Change

Lee Calisti, AIA - Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
architecture for change

Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
Architect(ure) of Change

Collier Ward - One More Story (@BuildingContent)
Architecture of Change

Jeremiah Russell, AIA - ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
architecture of change: #architalks

Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Change -- The Document Evolution

Michele Grace Hottel - Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
architecture of change

brady ernst - Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
The Architecture of Change: R/UDAT

Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
Architecture = Change

Michael LaValley - Evolving Architect (@archivalley)
My Architecture of Change / Hitting Pause to Redesign My Life

Brinn Miracle - Architangent (@architangent)
Architecture of Change: Building a Legacy

Jeffrey Pelletier - Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Imagining the Future of Architecture

Samantha R. Markham - The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
3 Things I Hope Change in Architecture

Rusty Long - Rusty Long, Architect (@rustylong)
Architecture of Change

Jim Mehaffey - Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
Changes

Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
The Architecture of Change

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Dwelling on a Macro scale

Tuesday, 14 March 2017
Map of  my suburb
During my 'research' of the street that I stay on, I came across a plethora of interesting articles both from the local government and newspaper. What better way to discuss the difference between what makes a house and a home than to canvas the little quirks of my local suburb that I stay in my home.

Sure I could spend time talking about the difference between a house and a home on a micro scale but it seemed more interesting on a macro scale. After all isn't life about the big picture ?

So here goes. The City of Perth has a history of being the administrative and military hub during the Swan River Colony period because of its strategic location. Along the way, some of the streets gained notoriety.  In my opinion, it is these derelict spaces  that add colour to make a suburb more interesting even more so than history and culture. It adds an identity to a place and dictates the future building typology that use the area has. My apartment complex was the first medium density to be built on my street and soon after an assortment of apartments followed. The new apartments replaced 'iconic' homeless gathering spots and made the area more liveable by increasing the foot traffic along the street. Over the last two years, have seen people staying in the city mostly working professionals or university students attending the schools in neighbouring suburbs.

An example of a noteable street is Stirling street which runs through the City of Perth as well as Highgate. This street is infamous as a red light district and has been a disputed and debated topic for many living close to it. I've been living near this suburb for almost 4 years and I haven't particularly noticed their presence so it doesn't bother me. The one thing I have noticed is that in the City in particular the shopping areas are constantly evolving with  the demographic of its visitors during all times of the day. The cafe strips on Beaufort Street and Barrack street is continuously evolving with all the new redevelopments in the City. I can't wait to see how this city will evolve in the next 5 years.

I've grown to love this suburb and its quirks make it more interesting. What about you, why do you like the suburb you live in? Is there anything you would change about it ? I'd like to hear what you have to say below. And before I leave here is the list of the other talented bloggers



This post is part of the ArchiTalks series pioneered by Bob Borson of  Life of an Architect. This year, we are trying to do something different and instead of Bob suggesting the topics  this month we have  a topic suggested by Keith Palma who has recommended the theme of House or Home. I chose to talk about how the history of a place shapes its' identity and how this identity attracts groups of people to stay in a certain suburb.


Bob Borson - Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
The Designation between House and Home

Marica McKeel - Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
ArchiTalks: House or Home?

Jeff Echols - Architect Of The Internet (@Jeff_Echols)
House or Home? The Answer to Everything

Lee Calisti, AIA - Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
our house is home

Mark R. LePage - EntreArchitect (@EntreArchitect)
Emotional Marketing for Architects: House or Home?

Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
House or Home? It's in the story.

Collier Ward - One More Story (@BuildingContent)
House or Home? A Choice of Terms

Jeremiah Russell, AIA - ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
house or home: #architalks

Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
House or Home -- Discover the Difference

Michele Grace Hottel - Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
"house" or "home"?

Meghana Joshi - IRA Consultants, LLC (@MeghanaIRA)
Architalks #24 : House or Home

Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
House or Home? - Depends

Michael LaValley - Evolving Architect (@archivalley)
House or Home? Train for One, Design for Another

Jarod Hall - di'velept (@divelept)
A Rose by Any Other Name...

Greg Croft - Sage Leaf Group (@croft_gregory)
House or Home

Jeffrey Pelletier - Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Designing a House into a Home

Samantha R. Markham - The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
6 Ways to Make your Architecture Studio feel like Home

Kyu Young Kim - J&K Atelier (@sokokyu)
Making a House a Home

Rusty Long - Rusty Long, Architect (@rustylong)
House or Home

Keith Palma - Architect's Trace (@cogitatedesign)
I don't design homes

Jim Mehaffey - Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
House or Home: One's a Place, the Other a Feeling.

Tim Ung - Journey of an Architect (@timothy_ung)
Architalks - A House is not a home

Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
#ArchiTalks #24 House or Home? #RefugeeCrisis @GrainneHassett mentioned

Sunday, 5 March 2017

New blog interface coming soon !!!!

Sunday, 5 March 2017
Hello Readers,

Some of the posts and blog links have stopped working on this blog. I am currently looking into transitioning into a bigger and better blog space. I've decided to keep this blog alive until I've figured out exactly what I am going to do for the new one and that is up an running.

Thank you so being so patient and sticking around. Looking forward to producing bigger and better posts.

#NiKa

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Regression or Evolution : Style

Tuesday, 14 February 2017


According to the Merriam - Webster dictionary, there are five possible definitions of style. 
For this post,  I'll be looking at style in terms of its ability to elegantly fit into the urban landscape.
If you were asking me to name a style icon, I would instantly answer - Jay Park. Simply because over the years he's evolved and created a style that can be easily identified as his own. However, I find myself at a loss when it comes to picking a single Architectural typology. Sure, there are monumental Starchitects but I'm not quite sure how I feel about seeing similar types of iconic buildings popping up on every city around the world at the expense of erasing the identity of these individual cities.

It might be a bit bold of me to say but, I feel like the current architectural style is regressing and there have been an increasing number of buildings just designed to shock the citizens of a particular city. For me personally, there has never been a single architectural typology but an assortment of "old-school"  typologies that I have found myself drawn to. Rationale dictates that if you were to put a group of architects in a room to discuss style you'd come to realise that style is a controversial topic and everyone has their five cents worth to offer.

Take for instance this years' Pantone Colour of the Year Greenery 15-0343, I'd like to know how many of you would actually incorporate that on your buildings? Personally, I found it slightly disappointing and I would be surprised if I saw every building  owner rushing out to buy a pot of green paint. It almost feels like overkill to have large green feature walls, it would be a different case if it were a green wall with plants.
As an architect in the early stages of her career, I feel like I should have had  a distinctive style evolving. However with my current situation, it feels like I'm regressing and losing my identity as a designer. So I'm using this as a starting point to try and create an Architectural identity for myself. Hopefully in the next few days I will be publishing some content to try and address these issues. Finally, I leave you with a quote to encourage all designers to create a unique style for themselves so that future generations might recognise their work as contributing to the urban fabric.




This post is part of the ArchiTalks series pioneered by Bob Borson of  Life of an Architect. This year we are trying to do something different and instead of Bob suggesting the topics we have topics suggested from the various ArchiTalks bloggers that were approved by Bob.This month, the privilege goes to Brian Paletz  who has recommended the theme of Style. I chose to talk about how difficult it is to pick a particular architectural style, creating an identity as an Architect and the kind of identity I hope to create for the future of my career.


Bob Borson - Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
Lee Calisti, AIA - Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
Collier Ward - One More Story (@BuildingContent)
Jeremiah Russell, AIA - ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Michele Grace Hottel - Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
Meghana Joshi - IRA Consultants, LLC (@MeghanaIRA)
brady ernst - Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
Michael LaValley - Evolving Architect (@archivalley)
Jarod Hall - di'velept (@divelept)
Greg Croft - Sage Leaf Group (@croft_gregory)
Jeffrey Pelletier - Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Samantha R. Markham - The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
Kyu Young Kim - J&K Architects Atelier (@sokokyu)
Keith Palma - Architect's Trace (@cogitatedesign)
Jim Mehaffey - Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Then & Now : Still Chasing the Dream

Tuesday, 15 November 2016
As some of you already know, I graduated from University in September 2015 with my Masters degree in Architecture. I had technically finished all my university modules by February 2015 but the University does not allow you to apply for the  March 2015 Graduation. This meant that I had to wait till the September 2015 ceremony which was good. As it meant that on paper it looked as though I had gotten a job straight after I graduated. The one problem I faced in Perth (Western Australia) was that every architecture firm was looking to hire people with experience but no one was willing to give a fresh graduate a chance. My first jobs were not exactly architecture related. I worked as a model maker and a bartender for a brief period after finishing my units prior to landing my first  architectural job
Model made whilst I was working as a model maker.
Towards the end of September, I finally had a break through an landed an architectural job. It was a small firm that mostly focused on industrial, commercial and internal fit-out of shopping centres. It was a good experience because I had the opportunity to follow projects of different scales during different stages of design and construction.

During the middle of 2016, the architecture industry in Western Australia started slowing down and a lot of Architectural firms started making staff redundant.  Naturally, graduates were the first to be made redundant. Unfortunately for me, I was one of those graduates.

As a Graduate Architect with only two years of experience going back to job hunting was not as bad as when I first started. Looking back in hindsight, I am kind of glad that it happened at the time that it did.A few weeks into being "funemployed",  I had to put my dog down. It would have been a very difficult period. I like to believe that everything happens for a reason.

Three weeks after being made redundant, I landed my second Graduate Architect job. This current firm specialises in  education and religious architecture which is something I had no experience with. They are also involved with a lot of government work so the drawing setup is different to what I was used too. I am  currently on a three month probation period and the pay is slightly lower than my last job. So far it has been an interesting learning curve and I will update you on my progress over the next few months.

Below is my 5 year timeline from when I graduated. From my experience, everything that I've planned to do since I've graduated has not gone the way that I had wanted it to go. I have learnt to take things as they come and solve problems one step at a time and that it is okay to change your plans if you circumstances change.

Last but not least I leave you with a quote and an introduction to the other archi-bloggers posts below.
 
This post is part of the ArchiTalks series in which Bob Borson of Life of an Architect selects a theme and a group of architects from all over the world  post on the same day and promote each other’s blogs. This month’s theme is Then & Now. I chose to talk about what I wanted to do after graduation versus what actually happened, the twists and turns my journey has taken and the plan for 2020.

Bob Borson - Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
http://www.lifeofanarchitect.com/then-and-now-architectural-design-or-accounting/

Matthew Stanfield - FiELD9: architecture (@FiELD9arch)
Where It All Went Right

Marica McKeel - Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
From Then to Now...Residential Architect

Jeff Echols - Architect Of The Internet (@Jeff_Echols)
Well, How Did I Get Here

Mark R. LePage - EntreArchitect (@EntreArchitect)
The Biggest Surprise of My Life as an Architect

Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
Then & Now...and the middle

Nicholas Renard - Renard Architecture (@dig-arch)
15 Years of Architecture

Jeremiah Russell, AIA - ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
then and now: #architalks

Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Then-Now: A Schematic Story

Stephen Ramos - BUILDINGS ARE COOL (@sramos_BAC)
Big Ass Buildings

brady ernst - Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
Pens & Fizzy Drinks: Or How to Set Measurable Career Goals

Brian Paletz - The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
How did I get here?

Emily Grandstaff-Rice - Emily Grandstaff-Rice FAIA (@egrfaia)
Being the light in darkness

Jarod Hall - di'velept (@divelept)
The Joys of Being an Architect

Anthony Richardson - That Architecture Student (@thatarchstudent)
Then and Now

Kyu Young Kim - Palo Alto Design Studio (@sokokyu)
Career Path: Follow Your Heart

Jim Mehaffey - Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
The Reluctant Code Guru

Tim Ung - Journey of an Architect (@timothy_ung)
10 Lessons Learned from a Young Architect

Mark Stephens - Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
#Architalks 22 - Then and now

Sunday, 8 November 2015

The Question of the beginning

Sunday, 8 November 2015
The timing of this post could not be any better. It has been about three weeks since I started my first job as Graduate Architect. Words cannot describe how gratifying it feels to have a job where I can actually utilize my architectural knowledge. So I thought what better way to reminisce about the project that inspired me to pursue architecture.
Acropolis of Athens. http://www.athens.ukgo.com/the-acropolis-athens.html

The Acropolis of Athens probably does not need any introduction for an architecture enthusiast or student of the arts. The simplicity and the elegance of the 3 buildings on one site leaves one spell bound when visiting this site. When I was finally able to visit this site it did not disappoint.I must warn you though the next time you go there to make sure to wear shoes that are non - slip !

Looking at this site, makes you appreciate how fortunate we are to have technology. How do structures like this one stand the test of time despite being created before technology was invented? How do these buildings withstand the test of time better than some of our modern day buildings? Are we doing some thing wrong or have we lost sight of the things that are truly important along the way? Where should we aim to go from where we are currently at ?

This is certainly is food for thought.

Till next time :)
Keep your head up.Keep your faith.


The site consists of three important buildings the Parthenon,the Propylaia,the Erectheion and the Athena Nike. 

This post is part of the ArchiTalks series in which Bob Borson of Life of an Architect selects a theme and a group of architects who also blog all post on the same day and promote each other’s blogs. This month’s theme is My First Project. I chose to focus on the first project that influenced me to pursue Architecture. To read how others interpreted the theme please click the links below.


Bob Borson - Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
My First Project: The Best Project Ever Designed That Wasn't

Jeff Echols - Architect Of The Internet (@Jeff_Echols)
My First Project - Again

Lee Calisti, AIA - Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
first project first process

Lora Teagarden - L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
#ArchiTalks: My first project

Eric T. Faulkner - Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
The First One -- A Tale of Two Projects

Rosa Sheng - Equity by Design (@EquityxDesign)
Why every project is my "First"

Eric Wittman - intern[life] (@rico_w)
[first] project [worst] crit

Emily Grandstaff-Rice - Emily Grandstaff-Rice AIA (@egraia)
Project Me

Jarod Hall - di'velept (@divelept)
Define First?

Anthony Richardson - That Architecture Student (@thatarchstudent)
my first project

Kyu Young Kim - Palo Alto Design Studio (@sokokyu)
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Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Working drawings of some of my projects

Tuesday, 13 October 2015












Horseshoe bridge intervention in Perth WA


Cossack : From Ghost town to Rapid Response Logistics Centre

" I love a sunburnt country, a land of sweeping plains, Of ragged mountain ranges, of droughts and flooding rains. I love her far horizons, I love her jewel-sea, Her beauty and her terror - the wide brown land for me! "   -  'My Country' by Dorothea McKellar (1904)

This peom demonstrates Australia's acceptance to  natural disaster and how dealing with disaster is integrated with the lands' "natural character". This is probably the reason Graduates of Architecture are taught to analyse the context first, then began designing. I fondly remember doing site analysis on a macro scale first analysing the region before honing it into the micro scale of the site. This process helped inform my design decisions. This way, the building's "whole of life" cost would be more efficient in responding to the needs of the region as well as the site. This would result in the added bonus of the building  becoming an investment for the occupant.


Macro scale  : Deciding on the region for the intervention.
Created by  The Contemporary Dragon Slayer (TCDS) on Indesign

With the increase in both man made and natural disasters over last few years, rapid response to disaster is becoming increasingly common. For my final year project we were put in groups and given a brief to respond to disaster. We wanted to create a "hub" in Australia that could respond to disaster and create a community for displaced people.First we researched the different states and concluded that the West Australia would be most suited for  this intervention because of its strategic location to the rest of Asia.We narrowed it down to the Pilbara and Gascoyne regions. Here, our research took us to the ghost town of Cossack. We thought rehabilitating a ghost  town would be perfect for a rapid response logistics centre as it also had the basis amenities and merely needed a nudge in the right direction.Thus we narrowed the site to have  a primary and secondary aim.

The primary aim of  was to rehabilitate the site. The secondary aim was to enable the facilities within Cossack to respond to disasters particularly within Asia.We choose a site further down Cossack Road near  the salt marsh and  away from the  Master planning intervention by Palassis Architects (http://www.palassis.com.au/project/cossack-master-planning). As we believed that their analysis would enhance the Rapid Response Logistics Centre (RRLC) that we were designing.

Created by TCDS on Photoshop and AutoCAD

Programme of the Rapid Response Logistics Centre (RRLC). 
1.Warehouse 
2.Processing centre
3.Admin and assessment centre
4.Temporary shelters
5.Staff housing and Leisure centre.
I was assigned with the design and planning of the Staff Housing and Leisure centre, which I coined the 26th Parallel. In this post, I will attempt to take you through my design thought process , the relationship between the 26th parallel and the RRLC and  the operation of the RRLC  on a whole. I look forward to hearing your feedback in the comments below.

My design process

Created by TCDS with Hand drawings and Photoshop
My research lead me to identify three crucial elements about Cossack that I wanted to incorporate into my design. The first element  was the layout of the former Cossack settlement. It was arranged in a narrow spine or peninsula elevated above the surrounding mangroves and salt marshes. This was also observed in the jetty at Point Samson (see image below) which was not affected by the f.Thus I concluded that this construction method of the proposed permanent accommodation would be most suitable in withstanding flood levels. The second element was that Cossack is defined more by its landscape elements - land form,geology, vegetation and views - rather than its built form. Finally the third element was the sense of poignant drama that the historic buildings in the city centre created.
Create by TCDS with hand drawings and Photoshop

Permanent housing 

To gain inspiration, I studied the formation of a pearl. A pearl is formed by mantle injuries that lead to the formation of a pearl sae by displaced external mantle cells. This seemed appropriate for the site as Cossack had a reputation as a pearling industry. The  mechanism  used for the formation of a pearl resolved the complexity and security requirements of the proposed housing development which in turn resulted in the creation of pragmatic essential artefact.

In terms of materiality, the housing development was to incorporate adaptive camouflage  so as to blend in with the surroundings. In order to find the best possible solution, I  went through a series of exercises  to determine how the modules in the accommodations should be arranged.
Created by TCDS with hand drawings and photoshop

The core components of my staff housing include modular accommodation, leisure centre, parking and landscaping. The purpose of my design was to create an  flood "proof" climate - controlled environment in the dessert that could sustain itself. This was to be done by circulating and discharging air via a stack such as a borehole. The housing was to have solar mounted panels to generate electricity.It was to have stormwater management and be able to capture rainwater for non potable uses such as laundry and irrigation. In terms of ecology, I wanted to created a habitat to rehabilitate the coast.This habitat should be able to feed the residence of the of the permanent accommodation.





Created by TCDS
Created by TCDS with hand drawings and photoshop


Created by TCDS on Sketchup and Photoshop
 The design was to be a spine of modules staggered to  minimise the exposed walls on the eastern and western fa├žades. In order to maximize the use of the sun, it would be best to orientate the units in an east - west  orientation. This would provide shelter for the units on the floor below and minimise the area of exposed wall. A composite screening to an external breeze way would allows air movement around the house to minimize hot air pooling whilst shading from the southern summer sun angles. 



Created by TCDS on Sketchup
The Leisure Centre

When designing the leisure centre, I identified the facilities that the people in the permanent residence would need. These were then grouped into various activity pearls for  the design of the leisure centre.The most important design aspect to take into consideration was that the area was prone to flooding. The design response to this was to raise the leisure centre above ground level. Another important design aspect was that all the facilities were  located around the amphitheatre and were easily accessible from any point.It was to also be easily accessible to both the temporary and permanent residences.


Created by TCDS on Photoshop and AutoCAD



That concludes my final year project. I would like to hear what you think of the feasibility of this project or any other comments you may have in the comments section below. 


Till next time :)
Keep your head up.Keep your faith.


      The Contemporary Dragon Slayer © 2014