Thursday, February 23, 2006

a [constant] reminder

i pass by this clock several times a day, and several times a day it reminds me of something different in my life. passing by tuesday and thursday mornings, it reminds me i should be getting up earlier for my 8:05 class to avoid running into the lecture hall. wearily wondering by, after a long night in studio, it reminds me that i should be getting more sleep then i do. this clock, with it's foundation, on route between the two places i call home, stands there in silence, constantly judging me. praising me when i'm ten minutes early and frowning it's face when i'm fifteen minutes late. to get angry is pointless, it's only doing the job it was designed to do. last night, however, as i passed underneath it's hands, i looked up, and saw it with it's background of blue. checking the time of this fading light, it whispered something new. in it's own silent way, it reminded me that my time here at k-state is growing increasingly shorter. minutes turn into hours, hours into days, days into months, and months turn into years. last night my friend, the clock, simply stated that i need to figure out what i want to do with my life.....................because "he" is ticking away, with no intention of slowing down.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

visions of the [past] and [future] at the same time

the title for this entry is a phrasing of words that could have been used as a mantra for last couple of days of my life. let me divulge:

on monday, our college hosted it's annual design expo. an event in which 70 plus firms set up booths displaying their work in the best light possible, all to attract graduating students. wanting to get started in my own job search, i prepared a resume, and portfolio. after making a list of the firms i was interested in talking with, i set out. i made my rounds and participated in the required"chit-chat" with the representatives. ultimately it comes down to the point where the firm asks "well.....would you like to interview with us?". after going through this routine with several firms, i managed a number of meetings. being very new to the job market, i found the interview process to be fascinating, because essentially, you're selling yourself. there were times when i felt like a used car salesmen, showing the specs and performance information on the floor model of "myself", trying to hide the minor dings and scratches. another interesting aspect of an interview lies in the fact that both interviewer and interviewee or presenting themselves in the past, while talking about the future. i was showing them the projects and accomplishments of my past to give them an idea of what i could do for them in the future, while they were showing me projects that they had completed trying to give me an idea of what they could provide me, in the future.

the mantra also applies to an experience i had saturday night. with the design expo in town, many recent graduates were in town, some as employers. after finishing my portfolio saturday night, my friends and i went out, and ran into these graduates at the "architecture" bar. at first it was a bit of a trip. here they were, looking very well put together, professional and rested, unlike a year ago when i would see them in the halls, sporting three day old t-shirts, and stained jeans looking tired, and weary, the very words to describe me and my friends now. i took notice that they now had the money to afford the "good" drinks, unlike the "cheap" beer my friends and i usually par-take in. catching up with them, i did notice an almost visable line between us, that one must need a diploma, to act as a passport, in order to cross. that night, however, i believe they gave us the determination we needed to finish the semester strong, graduate, and eventually be in that "booth". although it was a brief encounter, is was great to see them. enjoying life, with the weight of seaton off their shoulders.

here is a photo of what we like to call the "architecture" bar, and a sample from my portfolio of a project completed in my second year of school. constructive criticism is appreciated. click for larger views.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

the [all-night] dance

last thursday, i pulled an "all-nighter", and when i say this, i mean a true "all-nighter". where one does not sleep or take any naps during the night, and then must try to function the entire next day. during my stay here at seaton i've learned that the "all-nighter" is a seductive, and luring lady that temps and tricks the minds of young architecture students. her magnetic charm attracts you to her and pulls you in. she makes you believe that it's a good idea to forget sleep and stay up the entire night to work. however the cost of dancing with this debutante is paid during the following days. it may be true that i was able to stay up and get my drawings completed and a model built, but it is also true that i have very little recognition of last week, and i lost most of the weekend trying to catch up on sleep.

i've learned that most people are able to stay alert up until about 4 a.m. ironically that's the time lady "all-nighter" comes waltzing in, begging you to stay and work, so you comply. soon after this, around 4:30 you enter a state where you're not really asleep and yet not really awake. it's in this semi-coma that one tries to use objects such as exacto blades and scissors. as the dance continues you're mind falls deeper into nothingness. this continues right up until the crit, when your mind has completely stopped, and the only shred of focus comes from a carbonated and caffeinated beverage, i like to call dr. pepper. it's at this stage that voices sound like the teacher from charlie brown, which is actually a great way to go through a crit. just smiling and nodding. as the dance ends you walk home. one usually doesn't remember exactly how you ended up in the bedroom or in the bed for that matter. as the dance ends, lady "all-nighter" leaves you to sleep for 20 hours, after which you wake up and realize that not only are still dressed, but you're bookbag is on your back, and you're ipod headphones are still in your ears. the cost of this dance you might ask, one to two days of recovering.

i did, however, have a great time finishing up the project that night. i was able to have some fun with the sections and elevations, and i learned that i can produce a crude set of drawings and a rough model in 10 hours. i've also learned that this "all night dance" is a lot better with the perfect set of shoes. fuzzy slippers.

the sections for my house. the only requirements were that it be a three bedroom house for an art collector. to make it more interesting, i felt that the client would be a collector of marilyn monroe images and paintings.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

pavilion in spanish is [pabellon]......i think

after reading my last two posts, one may get the impression that i haven't been working very hard in studio this semester. let me assure you that although the hours are few on paper, i still find myself designing and building models most of the day. now i know with posts retelling a wait in line for hours upon hours and a road trip to kansas city, it may seem like this semester is all "puppy dogs" and "ice cream". to put these assumptions to rest i thought i'd write about the "going ons" as of late.

the college has the privilege of the architect, alberto campo baeza, visiting from madrid this week. his stay has included several lectures and workshops. along with learning from is vast experience, each fifth year studio is in charge of hosting a luncheon for our guest. in true k-state fashion my studio opted for a bar-b-que complete with hot dogs, hamburgers, cole slaw, and baked beans. i felt the different cultures mixed well, as we gave the spanish architect a true k-state tailgate.

also, this week, my studio group and i have continued work on our "ghost town" project for blaine. our idea is to build eight, canvas covered structures that, when connected, will form an outdoor pavilion that can be used for a variety of functions. ideally we'd like each structure to be movable, but having it be mobile as well as stable in the kansas wind is proving challenging. but hey, that's what we as architects do. this weekend will be spent finishing up the drawings and models so we can present them to the town monday. the tall white covered "trees" might be a little "dramatic" for the small farming community, but to quote mr. campo baeza.........

"architecture is not timid, it has a loud voice".