The Ole Familiar WordPress Dashboard

I’d like to openly complain to Mark LePage and all his multimedia savvy for inspiring me to a) get back in the habit of writing (500 words) on a daily basis as a result of his six favorite things article posted not long ago and

b) for posting today the challenge to post a link to your blog even if it’s been a while since you posted anything.  Well, it’s been a while since I posted anything as you can tell.  And, I posted a lot more about life in general than architecture in specifics.  But, I did enjoy the challenge and the process of developing a topic, doing a little research, and composing some thoughts for a post.

Mind you, I make no promise that this is the beginning of a renewed era of feverish blog posts.  But, while contemplating my 500 words for the day today (which I do at lunch once the coffee of the morning has fully saturated my bloodstream) I did some reflecting on some current events going on in my life and some paths being crossed that could put a large, heavy wheel in a downward rolling posture with the potential to pick up steam and sustain itself.  Such grand ideas many times will flame out (or go flat if I want to keep with the wheel theme I started).  However, venues and a lack of an audience made these same thoughts unattainable when I started this blog several years ago.  A new venue and a more accessible field of audience may change that this time around.  We will see.  This Architect still needs to maintain his 7am-5pm job to keep food on the table and kid in college. All Aboard  I had a boss once who loved trains.  When I found this out I noted that I too loved trains and model railroading.  I noted I would have loved being a train engineer instead of an Architect.  He  challenged me by saying he doubted I would have loved it all.  Because when you do it for a living it becomes work; a job.  And when it becomes a job the stresses of a job tend to suck the love right out of it.  I enjoy what I do during the day.  I’ve wanted to be an Architect since early in high school (Thank you Mr. McDowell and Mr. Hines) But, sometimes, coming home and putting “the job” aside and picking up my photographs and sorting through the wonderful pictures I’ve taken and matting them to hang on the wall or sitting down to write a story fires up a passion the everyday stresses of “the job” can’t match (I am certain that is a run on sentence.  Forgive me.)  And yes, I too have grand plans for a mode railroad scene to fill the vacant bonus room over the garage some day.  What an opportunity that would be to mix my love for trains with the old college traits of building models.  Look here!  Five hundred words!

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Looking for a Good Place to Start?

If you are preparing to take on a remodel project I recommend you consider first taking a look at this article.  Although all ten items listed are important to consider, items 8, 9 and 10 should likely start this article as 1, 2, and 3.  I can’t speak highly enough of the need for a contingency plan.  Heck, even men of the caliber of James Bond were smart enough to consider an alternative way out should Plan ‘A’ fail to materialize.  The employment of an Architect can surely catch many issues in advance but nobody can see all th potential troubles until the demolition is complete and the “bones” of a project are laid to bare.

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Victory in Vibrant Architecture Award Winner I – Harmonic Convergence

Our built environment plays a critical role in shaping our lives.  Today’s modern Architecture exemplifies this through the commonly used practice of designing buildings under the principle “Form follows Function.”  In other words, the building’s shape is determined by the activities that occur within.  The result of this mentality, coupled with ever-pressing financial restraints has, in most cases, resulted in an architecture that is less than inspiring.  Some would say that the “disappearance” of the building itself is a sign that the design is successful by allowing the activity that is taking place to be the star of the show.  In other words, if you are not captivated or distracted by the surroundings then you can focus on the reason you are visiting, working, or shopping in the building.  Others would argue our environment has the ability to enhance our activity.  Would you rather work in a drywall box painted white or would you feel more inspired, more productive, more engaged, by working in a well-lit room with warm wood trim accents and ample daylight spilling in through windows that allow a view to the outdoors.  Where would you feel more inspired?  I know! Me too!  So, with that in mind I want to offer up the first Victory in Vibrant Architecture Award (ViVA) right here.  As I come across examples of Architectural work that is well done I will share them with you, right here.  To be sure, when I come across something better suited to a bulldozer than an award I will share those as well.

When I first saw this picture of “Harmonic Convergence”  Looks a little overwhelming until you understand the space it is applied in.

Looks a little overwhelming until you understand the space it was designed to fill.

I thought, “this is a nightmare!  Why would anybody do this to a building?”  The vast array of colors changes so quickly across the room it can leave a person disoriented not to mention the difficulty of spending long periods of time exposed to light filtered in colors other than natural daylight.

The project is by artist Christopher Janney and revolves around the 72 foot long window wall which consists of a series of tinted glass in color combinations that run the full spectrum of colors.

It was not until I studied the project a little deeper I caught the intention behind the design and fell in love with the solution presented here.

The Big Picture

The Big Picture

The installation is set in a connecting link at the Miami International Airport moving passengers from one space to another.  The beauty behind the piece is, of course, that this is a space whose purpose is to move people along.  A space where there is no real purpose to linger for a long time.  The casting of color across the floor, through the full spectrum of colors, doesn’t become a distraction because nobody is spending long periods of time exposed to it.  Additionally, there is the opportunity to turn what is otherwise a very bland, nondescript place, into something that gives rise to travel-weary passengers heads.  A chance to look up and experience something unexpected.  Turning an otherwise lousy walk from gate to baggage claim into something worth experiencing.

In addition to the visual aspect of this adventure is the audio aspect which is piped into the space keying on all the sounds Miami has to offer.  Touching the senses, adding life.  A space meant to move people with the capacity to add, rather than detract, from the travel experience.  A job well done.  Congratulations Christopher Janney on earning ViVA I.

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