Monday, October 31, 2011

This week in Stoel's Studio

This past week in Stoel's Studio we designed the prototype furniture we plan to build in the wood shop at full size. We will be using mortise and tenon joinery. My design is of a carbriole leg style end table. The carbriole leg is one of the most popular legs design, originally make popular by Chippendale furniture. This leg is cut from a 2x2 piece of wood with the curve of the leg cut out with the top section, and the wing of the leg added afterwards with dowels. This leg design intimidated me at first, but after reading the directions, it only requires a few cuts from the bandsaw, and a few molding hand tools to finish off. It's a strong sturdy leg with great rail support. A groove in the rails provides access for securing the top of the table to the base. I have not yet decided what type of wood I will be using on top. I have a few options. I can cut plywood lengths joining them together with a biscuit joint to keep level and close fitting. Then I can add a decorative wood veneer. Or my other options is a solid piece of wood for the top. This takes great care in choosing the right type of wood which will not splinter under stress. My other piece of furniture I gave carful consideration on doing was a bookcase. All of us students could us a nice bookcase, and this piece of furniture appealed to my needs. I just had a concern with being able to match up do dove tail construction of the carcass. I'll check with Matt in the shop for further assistance to complete my project.

The Chatsworth

Built in 1904 by architect John E. Scharsmith, the Chatsworth marked the rise of the luxury apartment era in Manhattan.

Notable architect Richard Morris Hunt is credited with bringing the Beaux Arts style architecture movement to Manhattan.

A close up of the Chatsworth reveals the intricate sculptured details along classic lines, a prominent feature within Beaux Arts style architecture.

Overlooking the Hudson River and kissing the entrance to Riverside Park The Chatsworth stands regal in time.

Standing across the street from the Chatsworth, a pensive Eleanor Roosevelt guards the entrance to Riverside Park. A native New Yorker, and a champion of women and children, she remained a teacher and civic minded activists until her death in 1962. Riverside park was designed by Fredrick Law Olmsted.

Lighting Effects

Lighting is the finishing touch on any design. Lighting effects are powerful, and multi-dimentional. It sets the mood, draws emphasis, guides you through a space, and accentuates any focal point. The unique architecture at the GHM has a strong dramatic value with a 2-story volume lobby bathed with natural light. Special lighting considerations must be explored to compliment the space and direct the visitor's focus. Lighting effects for the GHM begins in the front courtyard with exterior flood lighting inter-mingingled within the landscaping to illuminate the entranceway at night. The lighting in the vestibule must be bright, but not harsh. The vestibule is a small space so the light fixtures should not overpower the space. Wall sconces with a marbled alabaster glass shading would provide unobtrusive, but bright illumination for visitors entering the museum. Directing the visitors to the welcome desk would require dramatic lighting effects to draw the visitors attention into the space. To create this effect we offer a variety of contrasting visual effects in conjunction with the materials and visitor interaction to provide this drama and interest. The bright natural light can be overpowering at various times in the day. An addition of a light shelf below the windows around the perimeter of the room would direct the natural light towards the ceiling diffusing the light and distribute it more evenly throughout the space. The light shelf can take on an added task with the addition of recesses lights to provide additional lighting needs around the perimeter of the room as needed for evening events. The auditorium entrance is recessed off to the side of the lobby, and is a secondary focal point when being used. Lighting up the back wall will draw the attention of the visitor to the attraction of the space. I'd like to create a theater marquis effect on the back wall with a "now showing" attraction banner. Lights within the stairs will help direct visitor up to the exhibits upstairs. Lighted signage will direct visitors to various side paths like rest rooms, elevator, and the storage cubbies. Various task lighting will be added to exhibits within the lobby space. The old Cadillac is a favorite attraction for the museum. A special mobile showcase needs to be constructed with attached task lighting to accentuate the lines of the car. Creating a starlight ceiling effect similar to the Weatherspoon Museum would add interest to the ceiling, and set a background ambient lighting scheme.

Monday, October 24, 2011

GroovyStuff Model

In Stoel's Studio this week we refined our GroovyStuff Models, and presented our boards to Groovystuff.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Natalie at Riverside

Riverside park runs parallel to the Hudson River. This picturesque setting is the water park at Riverside with the Hudson in the background, just as the sun is beginning to set, and my 7-year-old niece, Natalie, looking cute and adorable in the foreground. The glistening of the water on the Hudson is amplified by the prisms of color created by the sprayers at the water park. Photographs can never quite capture the significant beauty of light as is dances on water, or the experience you enjoy from a perfect setting. I sat here in Riverside Park this past August, as I watched my niece play, taking in the beauty of the day. I contemplated my upcoming journey to a new town, and a new school, UNCG. I wondered what new experiences awaited before me.

Monday, October 17, 2011

This Week at Stoel's Studio

In Stoel's Studio this week we had a very challenging project within a short span of time. We needed to design a piece of furniture and some specified piece that will go with it, for the incubator space at the Spring Garden apartments on Campus. The concept was to create an image to bring success to a business. Original called "The Joe Trader" they want an area where students can sell items, others will buy, and serve coffee.

I've driven by this locations on several occasions. It did not appear to have any life or to be inviting. I think success starts on the outside, to see if a potential customer wants to inquire as to "what is going on over there". Looking at the hot summer sun beating down on the concrete sidewalk, just doesn't seem very inviting, so I decided to create a node, giving it some interest. Below is a bench arbor I designed to sit outside with that cup of java, or strike up a conversation in cool comfort away from the beating sun. Just behind the arbor is a garden of plants just waiting to jump upon the brand new arbor. Blue Wisterias are great at that, maybe some bean stalks, honeysuckle would smell nice walking by. In no time, it would be a thriving arbor with shady comfort. Yes I think that's a node. I would like to add some finishing touches, like a watering feature, with subtle babbling in the distance. Now I would like to sit down and take my shoes off.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Stain Glass

Creating Stain Glass is a wonderfully relaxing hobby, and at times, if you're lucky enough, you can get paid for enjoying you work.  I took my first Stain Glass class over 20 years ago.  I had a serious break up with a boyfriend, and wanted to get out of the house to relax and focus on something else, something artistic.  This really took my mind off all my problems.  The precision and intricacies of the design keeps you mesmerized.

These day I design many transom for clients.  Most Stain Glass is filled with color, but many clients put a piece in their home often mention the works classical and timeless.  When I ask them about the colors of the rooms, they are not certain, and down the road they might want to change them anyway.  So they always want a simple design with clear glass, very understated, like; "I'm here, not too much, but I'm here."

To keep my clients happy, I like to put a bit of pizzazz into their "I'm just here glass." I subtle achieve this with the texture of the glass.  I like to start my basic pattern with splashing some key points into the design.  Of course they are clear, but they are clear bevels with prism, like a chameleon, they coral the light, play with it a little, when reflect it all around.  Next my background glass has a ripple, like water glass.  I frame the glass with bevels, then solder to patina, and I'm done.  Here are a few samples.  One day, I hope to get a commission of color.

Identity of a Museum

Where do we begin at the GHM?  The project is huge.  Up until now, we have just stuck our big toe into the water and splashed around a bit.  We addressed some linear aspects to the design, focusing on a new desk design, but really have not jumped in with a big splash.  That is until this past week.  Patrick really focused our group's attention with giving us a homework assignment to come up with some identity images for the GHM with respect to "Gate City," "RailRoad," and "Textiles".  This task gave us a quantum leap into the project.  We rejuvenated ourselves with a flow of ideas all inter-clicking together at once.

Over fall break, I learned Rhino, just the basics.  It takes practice.  Lindsay did a great conceptual sketch that I am inputting into Rhino.  Haven't figured out how to do stairs, but it will come to me.  
We all want to do our best for the GHM

Initially we started our project addressing color, materials and texture.  Until we came up with an identity for the museum flowing into a concept, the material were flat on their own.  We sort of put the cart before the horse.   Now we have to come out will the big picture, with a cherry on top.  A wow factor.  I do play it safe in design.  I look at ever project as what the customer whats and I fairly conservatively remained within those parameters.  Sometime I find that very short sighted.  To break out and be footloose.  I would like the opportunity for us to give them a design that has the possibility of being implemented. If we deviate away too much into wow-world zone, the concept might look great, but is it really great for the GHM, and their board of trustees.  Susan wanted something classic and times.   When I first walked into the GHM I saw wow, but wow with classic and timelessness.  I wanted to bring drama into the museum.  We still need to address drama.  I have an idea, but I'm afraid others in my group won't like it, so up until now I have not do so.  I think a wow factor show go into lighting.  Lighting has a great deal of power and control.  I want something dramatic when you walk in to make you head look up, to take in the vertical perspective.  I want the flooring to make a statement, with wave-finding inlays, I want a rhythm of the entrance to sing to it visitors like a fine quartet.  Not necessary music, but moments in music which evoke emotions and carries you away in a symphony climaxing to a crescendo.  So we have not found our rhythm yet, but we are looking for it.  

This blog writing will give each of us an awareness to key Principals and Elements of Design.