Monday, 26 December 2011

Merry Christmas

Hope you all had a lovely Christmas yesterday, and that you are enjoying the festive season!

The last week of term, we had a project which bridged the gaps between the years; our teams contained members from every year of the course. 

We were given a section of the university campus and told to improve it in order to enhance the learning experience of uni. So followed ideas for interventions.
These interventions were translated to 1:50 scale models, which - when joined together - gave us a mini campus inside the main building. 

Lots of festive cheer

My contribution... a little silhouette army

Campus within a campus

The studio took a beating

Feeling like godzilla


Friday, 9 December 2011


I haven’t written in a while; I’ve been busy as a bee.

We had project 4 to contend with, which was a mind-pushing struggle.  Our brief was to create a device which would simulate the movement of a personal daily ritual. I chose cutting a lemon (for morning tea), so I explored the movements involved in that. I looked at the leaning and the pressure. I took this further to create my device which was a foot pedal mechanism, which tilted you forward and a hand pad which you pressed down into to release a lemon fragrance.

I shan’t bore you with any more than that; it was a whimsical project, heavily based on the ‘body’ and the emotional qualities that accompany movement. We even had a choreographer come in...

Which has all made us think; “this is not what I expected to be doing.” We expected to be drawing buildings and learning of the inner workings of walls, not thinking about concepts and ‘feeling’ ideas.
I think this is a good thing. As the saying goes, “form follows function”, but what if we looked at how things affect us before thinking of build cost and technicalities? How the proportions of a room affect our mood, how social situations call for architectural help... surely the built environment would be a better place.

A great use of the deserted Dulux building

My daily walk; beautiful bit of plymplom

The charity shop I volunteer in got a psychedelic makeover

A short trip home included baking a cake...

... and seeing my beautiful dogs (and the family of course!)

Model showing the travels around the kitchen 

A bit of festive procrastination

exploring tilt and pressure

a mock up model

buffet at the charity shop christmas do

demo of my final device.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

More internet finds... again

This is from a site, named ungraphic, and this post caught my eye....

When you’re an architect
· you spend hours looking at & buying arch books but never have the time to actually read them
· your closet is mostly full of black clothing
· there are no people in your travel photos
· you will go into an off-limit area to look at a construction detail
· you have carpet sample doormats and tile sample coasters
· you can buy glossy coffee table books and claim them as a work-related tax expense
· the most important date in your calendar is your next deadline
· your vacations always become research.
· you see the sun rise… and set… and rise…
· the statement “It’s only 1 A.M.” seems perfectly reasonable
· you visit an art museum and take pictures of the building
· you slice your finger and the first thing you think is “don’t bleed on the model”

There were a LOT of these statements on this thread, but the ones I loved are here. Beautiful. Maybe I will do something this one day if I have a spare moment...

A beautiful result of a bit of a study break...

I have come across a site called Catalog Living, a brilliant site which considers the absurdity of catalog photos.

Gary and Elaine’s Thanksgiving guests knew the drill by now: approach the host table and say what you are thankful for. If Gary and Elaine approve, grab a bale of hay and have a seat.

See? It's brilliant! have a look about on it and and you'll find gems like this.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Stress and Strain

It's been a toughy of a week already. I have been putting myself under too much pressure and so, I have got a lovely coldsore.

However this(above) is making me feel more positive. I need to stay creative. I need to stay passionate. I need to want to be doing what I am doing. I need to be able to take a step back, see how lucky I am, and then carry on. I need to remember that no one is going to kill me for not doing things perfectly, or if I haven't gone over and above the task. I need to remember that the easy way is not the boring way; it might just be the way that stops me killing myself with stress.
As my physiotherapist once told me that our bodies are weak things; they need to be looked after.So, whatever material object you break, ruin or project you fail, remember; your body is made of weaker stuff. It needs to be cared for. It needs to come first.


Saturday, 19 November 2011

Things are starting to get a little heavier....

Right now, I am on top of the world; today has been amazing. Leaving the idea of Uni for a moment, I took a lovely run today out to entirely unknown territory. I went to the greengrocer's with my housemate in the afternoon to get myself a potato (amongst other veggies) for my beautiful 8hour slow cooked chili. Beautiful dinner which has left me full and very, very happy. Instead of going out tonight, I'll be going to the library with my course friend to do work. I think I've given up on the club scene. My reasons for this can be better articulated in Charlie Brooker's article, "Clubs are Hell"

Anyway, back to reality....

We have a new project, whereby we have to create a 'device' which emulates the body movements and reactions to coming into your home. No, this doesn't make sense to me either. Which totally sucks. I am really well and truly stuck with this one. The deadline for this beasty is the 7th December. Very close indeed.

We also have our technology assignment drafts due. One of those things no one has taken all too seriously as the deadline was so far away, but suddenly, it's looming and it coincides with the aforementioned project.

Aaaaand another..... The architectural theory side of the course has kicked off with a bang. We now need to write critically about the buildings viewed in Paris (it wasn't all fun and games). This one can't be a last minute job like my usual strategy, the essay in question holding  50% weighting of the year.

I would also like to note that I have not drunk any alcohol for almost a week now, and a late bedtime to me is about 10.30pm. The 'Fresher Spirit' has definitely left me.

Monday, 7 November 2011


Paris was beautiful, but the trip was probably the most tiring week I have experienced

Old cars being used for a film .......

...Which means that a moggy was there <3


Proudin'ell of this shot

Classic puddle photo

Parc des Villettes

Cool Toilet at a Le Corbousier house

Notre Dame

The Arabe Institute. Beautiful building  - Iris style windows
which constrict or open depending on sunlight. Clever stuff!

Monday, 24 October 2011

Deadline WIN

It definitely feels like a Tuesday today....
The hand in yesterday went well. I worked through the night, going to the library at 6.30 am, and meeting up with an equally sleepless 'last minute' friend at 8 in the studio. We were the only ones who had left it so late it seems, and armed with custard cremes we worked right up to the deadline. In total, I was awake for a dizzying total of 31 hours. In this time I had my fill of River Cottage in the background. I got 4 hours sleep yesterday afternoon, then it was out on the town last night to celebrate; I'm feeling the pain now. Good job that we only have 3-5pm today!

on my way to the library... ungodly hour.

Discovered, post-pen, that I'd missed the 'u'.... frustrating.

What has this deadline taught me?
It's probably a good idea not to try to do the piece of work that's worth 40% of the term in such a short amount of time.  Though, whether I remember this next time or not, is an entirely different matter.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Deadline Time

Currently living in the most UNTIDY room ever. And that is by my standards. Not good.

How is it almost Friday again???? The weeks seem to fly by when you are having fun have a deadline coming up.
On Sunday, 'Project Two: Container' is due, the deadline being 1pm. This is my first grown up deadline (ie it is not at all flexible), and I am half freaking out, and half overwhelmed by the ideas in my head.

This is one of my explanations (please leave criticism !) ...

In the design process of my container, I have struck upon and stuck with a narrative which relates my treasured object to the container.
 Before this narrative became apparent, I explored the idea of juxtaposition of material. For example I looked at the possible use of a natural wool to oppose the plastic and metal of my object. In relation to this I investigated and experimented with different methods of working with this material. Knotting and knitting were my first ideas; taking inspiration from different sources. The creation of a knotted fabric was prompted by thinking of primitive and practical original uses for ropes and yarn, thus taking the container as far as possible away from a mass produced modern plastic and moulded metal toy. This led me to a fishing net style.
I also explored knitting with the wool as this is a home hobby for me. I found that by using different knitting stitches, I could create different ways to wrap the car. At this point, my design was all about alluding to the shape of the car but not giving away entirely what it was, whilst juxtaposing the materials.
After a few trials, I came to the idea of the narrative. This being that my car is a replica of my car at home in Sussex – an old car which would have easily gone to scrap without my purchasing. Therefore I see my car as a recycled product; I could have bought a newer car with a larger carbon footprint to offset, but instead I bought a vintage English-made car which has had many owners. Thinking along the idea of taking what some people would consider not worth keeping and using it, I have created containers from recycled materials. I focused on finding materials that reflected the materials found in the car. For example, I indicated the metal used on the car with reclaimed aluminium beer cans, the plastic with fused plastic bags and the vinyl seat covers with an old, discarded vinyl record.
In terms of shape, I went initially with a traditional box shape to conceal the treasure within it; thinking of a treasure chest and the suspense of opening it. I also tried to keep the edges less than perfect to reflect the age and tattered look of my (real) car. I then changed to a curved, almost tunnel-like container to reflect the origins of the container’s materials. 

If you aren't bored to tears by some of that reading... then on with some pretty pictures!

Oh wait, what's that? I haven't been taking photos of anything because I've been super studious and ill? Oh yeah.... No photos chaps! 
After this deadline, I plan to knit some things, catch up on other work, and SLEEP. 


Saturday, 15 October 2011

This week in plymouth.....

This week has gone so fast! Tucked into my birthday cake eventually!

My mummy made me a tiffin cake 

SO much chocolate

Caaaaaake and Cath Kidston
 With the left over birthday photos over, on with the serious course-based stuff.....

The making of my container

 We have a deadline for monday, so I shan't write a lot here but all the best!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Mount Edgecumbe

On Monday (10th Oct) we went as a class to Mount Edgecumbe by ferry. It was part of our container project, whereby we took our object inside its container and 'sited' it. The idea of place and site has been a reoccurring theme through the last couple weeks, and the lectures and points that have been made in lectures and workshops all clicked into place with this task.
Anyway, on with the pictures....

My placement - reflecting the recycled nature of my

Drake's Island


Monday, 10 October 2011

Since the last..... warning: a lot of photos!

Here follows the antics of the week 3-10 to 9-10.... enjoy!

Container experimentation: fused bubble wrap and
 plastic bags

The Moggy Model

More experimentation - fosters can box

Awesome vinyl

McDonalds outing

container experimentation -knitting and knotting

home sweet home

Model making - My birthday!!

Birthday House!

The finished article

The reassuring sign in the architecture studio

Lunch with Lawrence for my birthday

Smeaton's Tower

Sunday Lunch with the parents for my birthday

Thank you fam-a-lam