Monthly Archives: June 2013

GHLA Book

I have just recently finished the GHLA book/brochure, which you may view by clicking here.

It was a lot of fun designing the book and developing a strict format that dictated the design of the book but also helped it read more clearly. Like I mentioned earlier, I did all of the photo editing for all of the images featured in the publication and also did a little bit of architectural photography.

Here are a few select spreads from the book that I did some significant work on:

contents

This first spread is the table of contents, highlighting the different project types the firm specializes in as well as the “about” section at the end. Each section then opened with a title page that depicted one of the Founder/CEO’s original sketches depicting that specific project type. Unlike the majority of architects currently practicing, he still continues to make beautiful hand drawings of every project he designs before moving to the computer. So we attempted to highlight this as best we could.

Point of Grace

This is a good example of a project page. We set up some rules for the design of the book that help it read more clearly. The first page of every project began like the left side of the above image. The opening image or “money shot” was always restricted to the same dimensions with the block of information below. The right side of the image was then free from any rules and was arranged depending on the various image numbers and sizes. We tried to include any plans, sketches, or construction drawings wherever applicable.

I also happened to take the above two photographs…

select parks

After the title page, the following pages were all free from rule and again varied depending on the quantity and size of the images.

Again, I happened to take all of the above photos… 

People who say that you should learn by doing aren’t wrong as I feel I have learned so much over the past few months. I am very thankful for the opportunity to work with GHLA in designing this book and look forward to working with them in the future!

Between you and me, you wanna know the best part? GHLA chose a photo that I took to be on the cover! AHHH! I’m like published now! I’m like famous now! Anyone want my autograph?

Design Work

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A Search for the Texas Vernacular: Episode 13

Dallas, Texas: The Perot Museum

Perot Museum Entry

I have been DYING to visit this Thom Mayne designed museum ever since its completion, and I finally got a chance to do so. This funky cube is visible from the highway upon entering or leaving downtown Dallas and is incredibly popular, for good reason. It is likely one of the best museums I’ve ever visited in terms of interactivity and content. But, like most museums, I spent little time enjoying the exhibits and mostly admired the architecture.

Perot Museum entry atrium

While the museum was very crowded, it was still a very pleasant experience. I know that I am often very critical of architecture that is without a grid or regulatory system, but I did find this museum to be a fun place to be in.

Perot Museum Ticket Counter

From what I could tell, the building is mostly made of concrete and glass. The whole first floor’s ceiling is clad in a perforated metal screen that filters little strips of light. Very fun. It reminded me of something from out of Star Wars.

Perot Museum Lobby

One confusing thing about the building is that there are rarely any orthogonal lines present. This isn’t really a problem when enjoying the building in person, but I would be lying if I said I didn’t get a little dizzy while Photoshopping some of the pictures I took. Here are a few that weren’t confusing in real life, but give me a headache now:

Perot Museum confusing 1

All of the intersecting planes mixed with curved walls, mixed with perforated guardrails kind of get to me.

Perot Museum confusing 3

The building is full of little moments like ^this^, most of which go unnoticed by most people.

Perot Museum confusing 2

I know my camera wasn’t level when I took this photo, but you can see how things seem to be arranged sort of “willy-nilly”. Again, not too much of a problem in person (though it did cause some issues) but very disorientating in photo-form.

Perot Museum confusing 5

^Looking up from the main entry atrium^

Perot Museum confusing 4

See the above picture? Are you at all confused about what is going on? I know I am. What are all of those intersecting angles? Why does the escalator go one way, but the stairs go another, while the third set of stairs goes a third way? Things are angled and curved at the same time. Things change orientation seemingly at random.

Excuse me. Barf break.

Perot Museum cafe

Just because the photos I took confuse me doesn’t mean that this is a bad building. On the contrary, I had tons of fun here and was mostly in constant awe from the architecture and exhibits. If I had to be critical for a moment I would have a few things to say. The building did seem to have quite a few poorly finished details, which was distracting to me but probably unnoticed by the other patrons. I was often unsure of where to go. The entry was difficult to find. Once inside, you must way-find through a maze to get anywhere. I’m certain we missed parts of exhibits because we did not know they were there. On the other hand, we saw several parts of exhibits twice because we reached what seemed to be a dead end.

Here are some detail shots:

Perot Museum detail 2

Perot museum detail 3

And my favorite, the elevator (I always love big labels):

Perot Museum favorite detail

All this criticism should be taken lightly. The Perot Museum was the most fun I’ve had in a while, due to a combination of architectural and educational enjoyment. If you live in or are vacationing to the DFW area, it is definitely worth a visit. 

One more exterior:

Perot Museum Entry

texas vernacular

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A Search for the Texas Vernacular: Episode 12

Grand Prairie, Texas: Dubiski Career High School, Police Safety Building, & The Summit

Occasionally I’ll drive past a building or area that I think looks interesting and I make a mental note to one day go back there and photograph it. Usually the building or area is actually rather interesting, but upon attempting to photograph it I am sometimes disappointed with the results. I know I could have picked a better time of day or perhaps used some more advanced photographic techniques, but for some reason these three pieces of architecture were not acting very photogenically. I should blame myself, but I won’t.

It is the fault of the buildings for being so… so… not good at posing for pictures.

Dubiski Career High School:

dubiski detail

I don’t know what a career high school is, nor do I care. I just want to know how these kids got to go to such a beautiful building instead of the jail full of lockers and corridors most people go to. The exterior was rich in materials and incredibly simple in design, but was so massive that I did not get a single picture I felt did it justice.

Dubiski Interior Atrium

The interior of the building could have very well been more spectacular than the exterior. Unfortunately, I was asked to leave before I could get a decent photograph. Haha!

Dubiski Stair Detail

Police Safety Building:

Police Department

This was the main reason I noted this area as photo trip worthy. Even from on the highway it is apparent that this isn’t an ordinary building. Green Copper, grey steel, brown stone, and red(ish) brick make up both the Police Safety Building and The Summit, and both are a unique combination of intersecting planes and masses. I use words like interesting and unique because… Well… I don’t really like them. Speaking strictly from an aesthetic standpoint, I thought the green mixed with grey, brown, brown, and brown water was a bit much. The entire building came across as sort of… muddy.

Police Department detail

In the front of the building there is a fountain that I thought was beautiful. I enjoyed the charcoal stone significantly more than the brown-brown-brown color palette used everywhere else.

The Summit:

Summit Hanging Art

The Summit seems to be a very nice recreation center with exercise and swimming areas as well as a pool hall, movie theater, garden, and cafe. However, the best picture I took was of a statue against a brick wall…

The Summit Sculpture

While I did enjoy seeing these buildings in person, they served as an example of something that is pleasant in real life but does not photograph well.

Again, totally not my fault. Stupid buildings…

texas vernacular

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