Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Internship Journal Entry 2

Today I went over to one of Tali's sites in San Jose. We measured out the whole house, interior walls, door and window placements, and some exterior details. I used a laser measuring device to measure the majority of the distances between walls and ceiling heights. It was nice to finally see the 4x8 and 4x4 beams/ scaled lumber I've been learning about in studio out there in the real world. These beams were noticed at the porch, and also the roof rafters. Things like changes in ceiling heights on the same floor levels (perhaps for ventilation systems?) and different trims on doors, squeaky floors, etc were taken note of. The front porch had about a 2 inch change in height for rain water egress. I'm going to make the blue prints of the house based off these measurements on Friday!

 P.S. Tali mentioned psychology classes would be relevant for architecture students. This is due to the various backgrounds, experiences, influences each client has, thus revealing what each client perceives/needs in a home (building). For example, the strong need for color for one with an Indian background, etc.How people feel in an environment is partially derived from architecture.

Lenore's Internship Journal Entry 1

I have the most wonderful opportunity to be working with an architect one on one this summer for about 7 weeks in Palo Alto. My first day was Vectorworks 2013 training. I created a floor plan of her studio space to get acquainted with the tools and functions of the program. I'm using this program throughout my internship to create a blueprint of one of her homes she's working on. The home does not have a current blueprint, thus we are going to go measure out the house tomorrow. After the blueprint is compelte, she may begin her design work for the home. Vectorworks is quite handy, and works a lot like Revit.  The layers are used to organized floor levels of a building, and classes are used to organized the components of the building. I was able to get into the details of windows/doors on the settings option to personalize trim depth, heights/widths, casement and muntin options, sash and jambs, etc (I'm learning so many things about windows and doors!).

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Lenore Goes to Taliesin West

 I visited the Taliesin West earlier this month during my stay in Arizona. This is Frank Lloyd Wright's winter home, later on becoming the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. This tour gave me a further understanding of who Frank Lloyd Wright really was.

Here is the entrance to his studio. The roof is made of canvas. The materials used to build this facility along with the rest of the buildings on the site are all local materials--concrete, local stone. Like many of his other buildings, this door is customized for his own height. Those around 6ft most likely had to duck to get into this studio. The canvas created a well lit room (natural light), and eliminated any shadows that would have cast on the drafting desk.
The following are shots of his winter home.

 The following are shots of his auditorium facility. This auditorium was the first to use light illuminated from the ground.
 Now, movie theatres around the world have taken this idea.
 He was also the first architect to use raised seating, a concept now used in ballparks, and nearly all theaters. Also, the irregular shape of this auditorium (it's a hexagon) made way for optimal acoustic quality. One may whisper at the stage, which could be heard from the very back row. Wright also uses wood floor, as sound travels best through wood.
 Hallway to the right of the auditorium.
I wasn't able to capture the interior of the winter home and a few other buildings on the site. The spaces of the home all integrated nature, and promoted natural heat, light, and cooling (all ideas that architects are just not "thinking" about). Certain chairs in the living room were created using a single, whole piece of scaled lumber--Wright was a very forward thinker in terms of efficiency and conservatism.

Wright was the only multimillionaire architect after both WW1 and WW2. This was due to the fact that he had continuously reinvented himself, never sticking around with a single style of design. He has made 130 buildings (if I remember correctly) in his whole career, designing and building till his death. He viewed aging as a concept of getting closer to a goal.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Final Bathhouse poster

The diagram on the left shows the main concept of the building, that is, the separation of the dry and wet parts of the program. The next diagram shows how these parts of the program are organized, the dry, linear, the wet, centralized. The next diagram shows the three views. The dark spot shows the most important view, the main square, and the lighter shades show the secondary views (a courtyard on the left, a street (or cityscape at the top floor) on the right. The next diagram shows the progression of sunlight through the building. The last diagram shows my structure, mainly bearing walls (as we have not studied structure yet).

Floor 1 contains the public space including the entrance and cafe. The cafe may be reached through a side door to the street. The main exercise pool is completely separated from these spaces by a wall. In order to get to this pool, one must enter through the first stairwell, and travel to the second stairwell.

Here is the second level. One enters from the first stairwell and immediately hits the dressing rooms. One may proceed to the baths, or travel down the second stairwell to the main exercise pool on the first floor.
The triangular pool is fully enclosed except for a small viewing window. The pool to the right of it is fully exposed at the tip. The large pool across has a large cut window in which water would flow down into the exercise pool below. The pool to the left of this would be completely enclosed. This does not jut into the atrium. The pool to the right however is completely exposed, and nearly fully protrudes into the atrium.

The third floor features the lounge and meditation space, sauna and therapy rooms, and three pools.

This top floor was created solely for the lap pool. This was added about a week before the project was due. I had miss calculated the length of the pool. Realizing it would not fit into the first three floors, I decided to add a completely new floor at the top. To the right of the lap pool holds a corridor of lounge chairs, each has its personal window which allows for views of the city.
This floor also contains an outdoor patio that holds views to the square. I placed a fireplace to the right of the patio.

The space to the left of the lap pool is my roof plan for the wet areas of the bath. I did not extend this area to the fourth floor.

I decided to zero in on this important section (below) as well. This shows the atrium/ light shaft of the bathhouse. I wanted light to reflect off walls and hit the water in a dissipated manner.

Bathhouse final model.

 Here is my final bathhouse model. I laser cut the facades so the windows would have a clean cut. This is the West facade, facing a street. My goal in these facades are to communicate what is happening on the inside of the building. Here the small windows imply the small intimate spaces of the bathhouse. The small rows of squares on the second row are the individual dressing rooms. The small squares at the top floor are individual viewing pockets for a row of lounging chairs in a corridoor. Since my building is higher than the adjacent buildings, these windows have
 views of the city. The wood is where I've placed the stairwells.
I made this wall removable for my reviewer to see the spaces on the inside. This side of the bathhouse shows the dry areas of the program. The first floor starting from the left--entrance, administration, cafe. Second floor are the dressing rooms and steam room. Thirst floor the meditation room, therapy, and sauna. Top floor the corridor of lounging chairs.
 Here is my east facade, which faces a courtyard. Again, I'd like to communicate the inside of the building through the outside. Thus, the small windows implying the atrium space of my bathhouse. These windows form the void space of the atrium.The more condense the windows, imply where the most light would be in relation to the skylight above. I slowly scattered the windows as they fall closer to the first floor of the bathhouse, where the least amount of light would hit in relation to the main source of light (the skylight).
 Unfortunately the laser cutter leaves burn marks.
 This wall was also removable. Here you can see more clearly the void space the windows communicate.
 Here you can see the private pool spaces jutting into the main atrium. Each pool space was created for a different experience. They each relate to the light, the pools, and the large pool below differently. Each has a different degree of exposure.

Here is what the pools would look like from below, if one were to be in the bottom most pool, the exercise pool.

Here is the entrance of the building. The odd shape to the left is where the front stairwell would be. It again communicates the outline of the atrium space that is placed further back.

If I were to make changes, I'd like to make the stairwells more interesting and inhabitable. These enclosed fire stairs were required in the program. I'd like to also play more with light and abstract shapes in the dry spaces of the bathhouse, and organize these dry spaces to communicate with the wet spaces in order to further unify the building. The dry spaces seem a bit too orderly, less thought out compared to the experiences the wet spaces provide.