Thursday, October 28, 2010

Architectural Communications

Throughout the Architectural Communications course at UNSW, we were encouraged to explore new territories in drawing and model making through the completion of three studio classes throughout the term. The studios which I chose to complete were storyboarding(re)presenting representations by Meeray Ghaly and Haris Dzonlogic, the drawing and rendering workshop by Linda Markham-Lee and Prajakta Sane and the material modeling workshop by Nikolina Bobic and Laurice Elhaj.

Studio One - Storyboarding

At the beginning of this workshop, we were taken to Goldstein Courtyard and we were asked to explore the area and eventually model it in 3D. My partner and myself chose to explore the almost interior nature of the closed in courtyard and also the courtyards devoid nature and lack of human interaction. To do so, we enclosed perspex slides of negative aspects of the courtyard, such as the litter and the large trees that blocked off the sunlight, in thick balsa frames thus emphasizing the courtyards closed in nature. These slides were then glued together, to form an almost tunnel-vision-like view of the courtyard:

What was most enjoyable and exciting about this workshop was the opportunity it presented us to experiment with modelling and our ideas about architecture. Because there were no boundaries, it stretched our ability to understand even what we thought about a space. The studio also allowed me to experiment with balsa wood and perspex, the latter of which I had never used before for model making. Overall, it was a thought provoking workshop.

Studio Two - Drawing and Rendering

During the Drawing and Rendering studio, we were introduced to many rendering techniques and styles, which we were then asked to employ in order to render one of the five houses we were presented with. I chose to render the Jilbey House, because I found myself intrigued by its rectangular, yet light, structure.

The workshop was very challenging as it, for the first time in this course, encouraged and emphasized the importance of proper architectural hand drawing and the use of drawing equipment that this entailed. Also, it brought to focus the need to be able to hand draw and render houses to emphasize certain aspects of their design. I attempted to do this by layering 3 sheets of vellum and drawing over them with black felt tip pens and grey copics.

One of the main criticisms of the work which I produced was the inclusion of a dark shadow line in the plan, a mistake which I do acknowledge - it is, as I was told by Prajakta, too dark and draws the eye away from the thinner lines of the plan. However, despite this, I still believe that I have learnt a great deal through the completion of this studio.

Studio Three -Material Modelling

During the last studio I chose, a lot of emphasis was placed on not only modelling, but also the theoretical background behind architecture and the aesthetic world. We were encouraged to question and play around with our set ideas through the four week course.

During the second week, we were asked to represented a chosen text and architect or artist through a model made out of white mount board. I chose Herzog and De Meuron's vineyard and the text Power of Horror: An Essay on Abjection by Julia Kristeva.

The influence of Herzog and De Meuron's vineyard can be seen in the rectangular structure of the pieces, and in their intricate interiors which make reference to the lace-like facade of the building.

In terms of referencing the chosen text, it played with the ideas of abjection presented in Kirsteva's text, namely the act of rising from a deceased body.

For the third week presentation, we were asked to take photos of a walk through the city and to use these photos to create a poster about our experience. Throughout my walk through the city, I was struck by the enclosed feeling that the tall buildings of the street and the large trees of the parks offered. I attempted to portray this in my poster by pasting dark images around the outer rim with the center gradually growing lighter:

From this poster, we were then expected to create a boxboard, string and wire model that expresses these ideas. I chose a more organic form than from my last week and used curved triangular shapes to represent the same enclosed form of the buildings.

I attempted to portray the center the poster through the use of string and wire, a representation of the dense atmosphere of the city.

For the last week of the studio, we were asked to combine our thoughts about the workshop with one word from a list of 7 and to use these to produce a poster. I believe that the course had asked us to "think outside the box" and, in a sense, "broken the box" of model making. I combined this with the word "(de)constructing", and thus produced a poster filled with squares breaking and falling apart.

From this poster I made a balsa wood model which represents the same train of thought. The model can be read from left to right or right to left, thus either reading as a box being constructed or a box de-constructing.

Also, as the box deconstructs, it stands as a metaphor for "breaking the box", an aspect of my poster.

I believe that this model is the strongest creation which I have completed throughout the three workshops.

Overall, the workshop was much like the first one I completed in the sense that it was very freeing and we were encouraged to explore different and interesting ideas. Also, the requirement that we had to present our ideas verbally has helped me, as I have very poor skills in that field.

Thus, conclusively, the Architectural Communications course was very interesting to complete, as it allowed one to experiment with many fields of architectural representation.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


This is the meeting point for the two clients. Merkel descends to the meeting point and meets at the stairs, thus having to look down upon Keller as she glides to the meeting point from the ocean. This represents their power levels, as Merkel is seen to have more power than Keller, as she is a diplomat whilst Keller was an intellectual. The dining table effectively seperates the two form eachother, further emphasising their power split. The placement of the meeting spot underneath and close to a waterfall and also surrounded by high peaks is another allusion to the powerplay at hand, for both natural features are also embodiments of the power of nature.
This is Helen Kellers side of the bridge with the elevator in it. It is positioned below that of Merkel's, another allusion to their powers. Kellers is embedded into the Ocean with a large opening, thus allowing her to feel the sensation of the sea as she cannot see nor hear it. The openings and the glass encasement allow her to also feel the heat of the sun.

From this point of view, it is possible to see the two ends of the bridge. Merkels bridge on the left has been built to appear over-structured and stable, thus representing her political power and position in European Politics. Its encasement in transparent glass is also an allusion to how the power structures are often hidden - as normal people we are not particularly enlightened to the ways in which the government figures control the country. Furthermore, the purple end of Keller's section can be seen to be suported by the cables coming from Merkel's end of the bridge, another allusion to the powerless-ness of Keller in relation to Merkel - Merkel's end of the bridge has to physically support itself and also the Keller end.

36 textures

Here are the 36 textures I made for experiment three.

links to uploads

Google Warehouse

For some reason whenever I save the level the end of the bridge is not aligned to the rest of it, so you will have to click the end of Merkels bridge (merkelpart2) and "align to object" it with the base of the bridge (merkelpart1), otherwise there is a slight gap on the stairs.

To work the lifts:

Helen Keller - press "c" to go to the meeting place and then "c" to return

Angela Merkel - press 'x' followed by, 'y', and then 'o'. To return, press 'y' followed by 'x' and then 'b'.

Monday, June 14, 2010

mashup of articles

What is power?

Power is hidden, for it is blind – it closes its eyes and ears and plunges into the unconsciousness of a newborn baby. Power is also subtle yet poignant, for it is often deaf and mute, however, at the same time, it is often embodied in a remarkable mind – perhaps one of an artful and subtle writer, but it is always in a crusading humanitarian. Power can spark significant media attention and controversy, for it is desirable and stunning, phenomenally wanted as Number 1.

Power can sway people and it can lead a country, however the person who wields it will often also lose it, for it vanishes as quickly as it strikes. This brutal power is often a struggle to reach agreement, a reflection of widespread unhappiness, however it is also a struggle to be a full and happy participant in life.

Helen Keller -


Triumph Out of Tragedy by ALDEN WHITMAN

For the first 18 months of her life Helen Keller was a normal infant who cooed and cried, learned to recognize the voices of her father and mother and took joy in looking at their faces and at objects about her home. "Then," as she recalled later, "came the illness which closed my eyes and ears and plunged me into the unconsciousness of a newborn baby."

The illness, perhaps scarlet fever, vanished as quickly as it struck, but it erased not only the child's vision and hearing but also, as a result, her powers of articulate speech.

Her life thereafter, as a girl and as a woman, became a triumph over crushing adversity and shattering affliction. In time, Miss Keller learned to circumvent her blindness, deafness and muteness; she could "see" and "hear" with exceptional acuity; she even learned to talk passably and to dance in time to a fox trot or a waltz. Her remarkable mind unfolded, and she was in and of the world, a full and happy participant in life.

What set Miss Keller apart was that no similarly afflicted person before had done more than acquire the simplest skills.

But she was graduated from Radcliffe; she became an artful and subtle writer; she led a vigorous life; she developed into a crusading humanitarian who espoused Socialism; and she energized movements that revolutionized help for the blind and the deaf.


Source: "Helen Keller, 87, Dies", in NY Times,, accessed 13th of June, 2010

Miranda Kerr -


The stunning hottie is one of Australian top supermodels. Miranda was brought up in the Australian rural area of Gunnedah, but moved to Brisbane city shortly after.

Miranda began modelling at age young of 13 after winning the Dolly/Impulse Modelling Competition in 1997. This win sparked significant media attention and controversy over her age and maturity, and the matter of paedophilia and child pornography. Kerr dismissed these claims in an interview, stating; "They were blowing out of proportion. In the media at the time they were trying to cling on to anything remotely to do with paedophilia. Dolly is a magazine for teenage girls, not for old men. And I was fully clothed! Doing a winter shoot! They just made something out of nothing."

Kerr was described by one fashionista as having an Audrey Hepburn look as well as being linked to the current 'baby doll alien' looks, similar to models Gemma Ward and Lily Cole. Many also cite her unique look somewhat as a combination of models Gemma Ward and Daria Werbowy. Her success as a model has been phenonemenal and as a result she now appears at high profile fashion shows, while also gaining immense coverage in various campaigns.

So far, Miranda's career has consisted of catwalks, fashion and beauty shoots, as well as TV and magazine advertising campaigns. So far she has modelled for Maybeline, Levis, Portmans, Jets, Blumarine Swimwear, John Richmond, Lisa Ho, Veet, Bonds and Peter Alexander, Elle, Harpers Bazar, Italian Glamour, Oyster, Squint and Australian Vogue as well as walked for big fashion designers such as Anna Mollinari, Just Cavalli, Blumarine, Baby Phat, Enrico Coveri, Amuleti J, Cia Maritima, Betsey Johnson and John Richmond to name a few .

Presently she is modeling for Victoria's Secret and was the first ever Australian model to appear in a Victoria's Secret runway show. She also appears in the Pharrell and Kanye West music video "Number 1".


Source: "Biography on Miranda Kerr", in Miranda Kerr Info,, accessed 13th of June, 2010

Angela Merkel


Angela Merkel became the first female chancellor of Germany in 2005 at the age of 51. She was also the first eastern German to lead the country after its reunification following the fall of the Berlin Wall. She is the leader of the Christian Democratic Union, a Catholic-leaning conservative party.

Mrs. Merkel was re-elected in September 2009, making her one of the longest-serving leaders among Europe's major powers. But her party had its worst results in 60 years, reflecting widespread unhappiness over the economic downturn, which has cost Germany its position as the world's leading exporter. She formed a coalition with the pro-business Free Democrats, but rising budget deficits as a result of the economic crisis, however, have drastically limited the kind of tax cuts on which the coalition partners campaigned.

Mrs. Merkel was in one sense the central figure in the drama that played out over the first five months of 2010 as the European Union struggled to reach agreement on a response to the sovereign debt crisis set off by Greece. Germans were overwhelmingly opposed to a bailout of a country they saw as spendthrift, and Mrs. Merkel took a tough line in months of negotiations with France and the International Monetary Fund over an aid package.

As the euro continued to deterioriate, Mrs. Merkel went along with an aid package for Greece three times the size of the original plan. Later that week her party lost badly in the regional vote, losing control of the upper house of parliament, meaning that any initiatives of hers could be blocked by opposition parties. And when European leaders worked out a bailout plan of nearly $1 trillion in the hope of putting the debt crisis to rest, Mrs. Merkel was in Moscow watching a military parade commemorating Nazi Germany's defeat in World War II.

On My 21, Germany's Parliament approved a measure allowing the country to contribute to the nearly $1 trillion bailout package. After days of often heated debate, Mrs. Merkel's coalition of conservatives and Free Democrats managed to push through the measure only because her coalition has a comfortable majority in the Bundestag. Opposition leaders said they could not vote for the package because Mrs. Merkel had shown no leadership during the crisis and had no long-term strategy to instill public confidence in the euro.


Source: "Angela Merkel", in The New York Times,, accessed 13th of June, 2010


2 draft crysis wars environments

Environment One:
Mountains in the Rhine, Germany.

This is my attempt at making the mountains. I have been thinking of adding a waterfall in between them for effect.

Environment Two:
Open Cut Mine, South Australia

I am still trying to figure out how to make the red sand effect and level it out properly.

18 perspectives

Friday, April 30, 2010

Week Three

36 Textures

With my textures, I have attempted to parallel the theories of science through the use of primary shapes which feature in the study of the world around us. The lightest shade begins with the primary element - the atom - and the darkest shade represents the night sky and the density of mass.

Final Design

The Three Chosen Textures -

The Links for the design -
Google SketchUp:

File Front:

The Five Images

The studio of Stephen Hawking can be seen as the two floating hollowed out squares on the left, and the one of Charles Darwin is the one on the right, with the glowing rectangular prism separating the two laboratories.

By removing all traces of a landscape apart from the jagged towers, I have attempted to express the vast and never ending space of the universe and also its desolate nature.

The ramp is used here to express the coming together of the two ideas of the scientists - the trees stand as motifs for Darwin's earth-based theories, while the sharp, white light which are next to the laboratory of Hawking are metaphors for his explorations into the less tangible theories on space and light.

Week Two

"Electro-liquid Aggregation" of Quotes
The two chosen quotes:

Stephen Hawking:
"There ought to be something very special about the boundary conditions of the universe and what can be more special than that there is no boundary?"
Source: Stephen Hawking, as quoted William B. Drees, "Beyond the Big Bang: Quantum Cosmologies and God" (New York: Open Court Publishing, 1993), 235

Charles Darwin
“The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference.”
Source: "Charles Darwin Quotes", QuoteWorld, (accessed May 1st, 2010)
The universe, a vast and, according to the theories of Stephen Hawking, ever expanding place, has captured the minds of many scientists. But what is it? It is essentially the area around us, however the vast scale of it, the complexity and yet, at the same time, its simplicity have distorted this very simple definition - its inherit paradoxes beg for a more complex answer. It is elusive and goes beyond the scope which our minds can comprehend - it has no ending, it is limitless and, as such, it has a sense of indifference to us, who live out our whole lives on one planet, which circles an average sized star in a galaxy of many identical to it.

However, there is a freedom in all this. We are surrounded by no boundaries, we have, according to Darwin, no purpose in a place of 'pitiless indifference' - with such characteristics, what is impossible?

Reflection on a Slide of the Lecture

I find this image hauntingly beautiful - there is an interesting mixture of the solid and the immaterial, the light and shadow. This mixture allows the objects to almost transcend the characteristics of the three dimensional world and take on a more elusive character. There is, in essence, an air of the ethereal around them as they seem to float on the page.

I have attempted to achieve this aspect of the design through my own manipulation of light and darkness, and I also wish to express the same notion of the ethereal.
I want my designs to appear to float in space, much like the images above. This ability to question the borders of the three dimensional world is also expressed through the quotes of my two chosen scientists - primarily Stephen Hawking and, to a lesser degree, Charles Darwin, both of whom have sought to understand the often elusive character of the world around us.

Crisis Wars DevelopmentThis is what i have so far for Crysis. I have attempted to make the earth around the labs very rough and jagged to represent the chaotic randomness of the universe - the "pittiless indifference" which it poses. With the lighting effects, I have attempted to make the laboratories seem ethereal, particularly through the addition of a wall which emits light (see the first image above). However, as of yet, I have not applied any textures to the piece. The ramp (shown in the second image above) and landscaping still needs further work.