Wednesday, May 31, 2006



Through my many Journeys through the vast ocean of the internet.. I have found a really amazing site that is about "Fusing the Art of Communication with the Communication of Art."

So here is a sneak peak of Articles..

For the Record: Its not my own, this is copied from Jakeyology

"Talking To Myself

Stop. I feel like saying don’t go. But who am I to say that. I talk to myself, all the time. Stop eavesdropping you sneaky thing. Some things are private. But, then, it wouldn’t be interesting if it were public, would it now. Are you still listening though I told you not to. Good. I told you so only to make it interesting. How would it sound if I said gather around y’all, come hear what I have to say. Wouldn’t that work, work to chase everyone a way. So, I make it exciting: I whisper; I tell you don’t listen; I throw suspicious looks at myself. And you get excited, as do I. You’re excited for you listen in to a private conversation between myself; I am excited because now I really have something to talk about.

“Who wants to be excited anyway?” I ask myself. “Everyone,” I answer myself. “That was a rhetorical question,” I tell myself. “Who do you think you’re talking to?” I reprimand myself. “Don’t talk down to me,” I say to myself. “Look who’s talking,” I cynic myself. “Touché,” I reply to myself. “Ye, I always get the last word,” I rub it in to myself.

They say talk is cheap. They are wrong – talk is free, free speech. Talk all you like, but don’t say a word. Saying what you talk would be wrong. Talking what you say would be weird. So don’t mix your talking and your saying. Do you hear what I talk; do you say what I hear.

I listen to myself talking and I don’t like what I hear. It’s kind of funny listening in to yourself talking to yourself. It’s like listening to a recording of your own voice – I don’t sound like that.

They say only crazies talk to themselves. I wonder if they were listening in to themselves talk. Not only crazies talk to themselves (true, only crazies talk crazily to themselves, but) even normals talk to themselves – albeit normally.

This is writing: talking to yourself so others could listen in."

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Popular Site


Apparently this is the most popular Site in the States at the moment ;)

Monday, May 29, 2006

Chinese Club..

Goldring House


This is my house.. fancy.. not really.. neway..
Please excuse the really bad lighting and rendering..

Revit Tut

Friday, May 26, 2006

ADIDAS VS NIKE in the TRASH stakes


Yet again I have come acoss a really cool ad campaign.. this is from Cool Hunter..

Super sports brands Nike and Adidas are at war. Ok, so that’s nothing new but their combating marketing strategies are beautifully exemplified in the ads above. Nike’s clever idea to turn the humble trash bin into a basketball hoop was taken one step further by Adidas, who turned actual hoops into bins. The battle continues. May the best man win. by Billy T

Wednesday, May 24, 2006



This is a poster that I made for a friend of mine.. He has started a company that makes custom tailored clothing.. amazing stuff.. check out his site

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

epiphany 1


Its good to finally be back.. Congress was amazing!!!!!! I cant elaborate how important it is for a student to go.. What you learn in 1 week of congress will take you many months to understand!

I intend on blogging about the lectures at congress, just to give an overview. Before I do that, I have a nagging need to get a particular epiphany that I had during last week out into the open.

While a few of my friends were eating supper, we were looking at a website for a holiday retreat somewhere in Miami. The website was superb. It utilised night photography (which would make a Tuscan villa look amazing) and loads of Photoshop. The actual building was my main focus. Quite honestly, it was so boring.
We had this mad debate about why it was either good or bad, but not quite realising any form of closure. While the debate raged back and forth, the one guy said that my opinion was arrogant and egotistical. Which I felt was a little on the heavy side. To cut a long story short. They loved the building and I had a nightmare about it that night (just kidding - but it explains what I thought of it ;))

The epiphany that I alluded to earlier is simply this. As an architect we are expected to have professional competence and understanding in all fields of study that would affect our design. These can range from child psychology, landscaping, building technique and the current day’s politics. To be able to utilise any of this in a design language, we have to form our own opinion of what ever subject we choose. This is not arrogance. It just allows us to look at things critically so it can be taken to a lateral interpretation and later form concrete, timber, or masonry poetry.

To make an analogy between architecture and medicine. A student of medicine will write an exam and fail. He gets a supplementary exam and fails. He then receives another 2 exams after that to try and pass. 4 exams to see if the future lifesaver knows what he/she is talking about… Now I’m the furthest thing from a mathematician, so please allow me to invent some maths.

Let pass = 1 and a fail = 0
For every test a student can either pass or fail (obviously)
But for every test that he fails his apparent knowledge becomes diluted..

ie: test 1 student A passes with 51% Student A knows ½ of his/her work; or student A fails and writes the sup and then passes. He/she knows ¼ of his or her work and so on. So the student that fails 3 out of four exams and writes the last exam and just passes only knows 1/8 of the work required. Scary!!

In architecture exams mean nothing to some degree. All our marks come from projects as we all frantically know. If you fail you have a chance to redo that project for the end of the year crit. Your mark will only go up or down by 5% either way. To get into the BAS honours degree and further up the ladder, you will be confronted with highly critical people that will see very quickly if you know 1/8 or 100% of your work, and can deny you on that basis. One could now argue that achieving the professional status of an architect is a lot harder than that of a Doctor. Please don’t get me wrong, I have great respect for doctors, and would, most probably do badly if I tried to learn medicine.. but this issue is interesting nevertheless.

You are probably wondering what that was all about. Well let me explain. A person will go to a doctor with 1/8 of the knowledge that will be required to save your life. Patients will listen, and accept what ever the doctor says as a given. He is a professional, a doctor.. he knows everything!!

An architect on the other hand will tell a person that a building is ugly according to the theory or design philosophy that that he applies, or that it’s a bad idea to imply Tuscan monstrosities into an African landscape, and instead of being respected on his professional status, and knowledge, he/she is told that he is opinionated and arrogant.

And that’s what occurred to me. By definition we have to be opinionated. Imagine a client sitting there and the architect wasn’t sure if maybes, and hows… ask any contractor. The word architect yields power on a construction site larger than one would care to believe. Why is that? Because his professional training has given him the responsibility of making sure that buildings are built correctly and safely… That sort of power does not come from a person that is unresolved on particular issues. They are opinionated, because a heavy responsibility rests on their shoulders. Based on that being opinionated, at least for me, means confidence in ones knowledge.

So then why does a client or simply a friend get so insulted when you tell them that Tuscan architecture is a virus, or that the flashy pictures and pretty colours are just manipulating them to think that a building is beautiful? Well the answer is simple! I have my taste and you have yours. And by an architect even with all their training in theory and design practice saying that’s ugly.. you will ultimately attack their ego. And that never goes down well.

But there is a small solution within this irony… When a client disagrees with the doctor; they will often go for another opinion. Perhaps the second opinion agrees with the first. The determined client will go to a third, forth and even tenth doctor, just to hear someone say that different news is optional. Unfortunately when a person is really sick, it doesn’t matter how many doctors you go to. Your answer will be the same. The client inevitably will accept this and allow treatment.

Now imagine that a client went to an architect and wanted anything but South African architecture. The architect says no. The client then moves onto the second and the same answer is begrudgingly received. The furious client goes to a third, fourth and even tenth and receives the same answer. Ultimately the client will accept that he/she is living and South Africa and that architects wont design anything but South African. The mortified client despairingly accepts the new age of South African architecture and is a part of the revolution of the South African landscape.

I guess the point that I’m trying to squeeze out is simply this. We have the power to move boulders on construction site. To knock down massive buildings, but there seems a lack in the professional architectural community, to put their foot down and refuse anything but good design that is applicable to South Africa. If every architect joins this endeavour, the client would have no choice but to accept good and appropriate design. I’m assuming that the first few clients would be hard to convert, but once people see that South African Architecture is not merely a hut (which is a very valid solution within South Africa), but a fusion of modernism tied with legacy, history and a design language that speaks of progression, I feel that there won't be enough architects in South Africa to deal with the uniquely South African work load.

Friday, May 12, 2006

If Wits had spare cash...


Hi, I was just wondering, and this is most definately for your participation. If Wits had spare money that they could do something constructive with, what would you suggest?
Better Computers, Chill Room, Coffee Lounge, Draughting Boards, Chairs, Elephants… what ever…

Leave a comment with your ideas ASAP!!!

I just want to know.. ;)



So there we go.. That’s the end of my ad campaign.. For those of you who are now new to the blog, thanks for your interest. I hope that it continues.. A feed is available in the sidebar, so please subscribe. The point of this blog is to document what being an archi student is about.. At least to me..

I would love to hear what you guys are thinking, so please comment..

Thursday, May 11, 2006



Tuesday, May 09, 2006



While humming Matisyahu’s latest single, I stopped to notice the newest piece of architecture to grace our eclectic campus. It’s the newest masterpiece of form, function, materials and what ever other word architects use to make their sentences seem longer than they have to be. I’m talking about the three – bay covered parking in front of the JM.


What on earth is that? “I mean really!!!! Who throws a shoe?!!” Correct me if I’m out of line, but the building just in front of that monstrosity of a parking bay cover, is Wits’ faculty of architecture.. Those crazy kids learn all sorts of things. Just refer to my blog to read the article I recently posted. One of the things that they are apparently taught is to design while thinking outside the box.. Not that a 3-bay parking space is going to make a difference to anybody’s portfolio, but would it not make sense to put the design opportunity towards the students of the archi faculty.. Fine, the older years will argue, no time for parking bays. Valid point, But who wouldn’t want the opportunity to make a built impact on the very surface of the university that they intend on graduating from? Anything would have been more successful than that eye sore.






Peter Rich has spoken to us about his trip to the States and Urban Studio. Smack me over the head and call me a cave man, but wasn’t there just an opportunity for students to design something and build it with our own little paws!!!!! The faculty needs a good kick up the tochas to realise that things are happening right in front of us, and don’t need to continually complain that we need funding, or don’t have permission, or any other excuse that just slows down the process of an architect’s education..

So here is what I suggest.. Lets stop asking for permission.. Lets just start doing things to improve space.. Get ideas together, we will organise our own funding and wits will just have to accept it.. If the entire class is revolting (and I mean in the “it’s a time for change” revolution) how can they stop us?!! Morne’s idea of partitioning the class is a start.. I think we should take it further!!

The Wits Archi Underground Movement has commenced!!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

You know you're an Architect Student when


This is kewl..


what my life is like...

You Know You're An Architecture Student When:

- you analyze everything as if it were a building.
- concept of time is not forward, but a countdown from the time a project is due ("What time is it?""4 hours 'till").
- you slice your finger, and the first thing you think of is if you'll be able to finish your model. and if it's presentable
- you say "It's only midnight- I have plenty of time to finish."
- you confuse sunrise with sunset.
- you're not ashamed of drooling in class anymore, especially in Structures
- The idea that you have a room to live in outside of studio is just a myth.
- you hear "Didn't you wear that yesterday?' followed by "and the day before that?"
- you room mate files a 'Missing Person Report.'
- someone asks you for your phone number and you give them the studio's.
- You draw perspectives of your friends room on your Japanese homework just for the fun of it.
- Whenever you finish a project and don't have any studio work to do, you are constantly wondering why you aren't in studio working
- You buy trace paper in mass quantities.
- You understand what 4B, 2B, B, HB, H, 2H, and 4H are and have lots of each type.
- Your idea of splurging on yourself is buying another circle template (or other miscellaneous template).
- You put a scale under everything you draw so that people know how big it is.
- The biggest decision you have to make near the end of the term is "pencil, or ink?"
- You always have a supply of bandaids around for xacto knife cuts.
- You have a 30, 60, 90 and a 45, 45, 90 degree triangle. Or two. Or three. Or more.
- You keep around adjustable triangles too just in case.
- You start replacing pictures of your friends and family with pictures of buildings.
- You never have enough wall space to pin things up.
- your idea of relaxing is going to your core cirriculum classes
- You always have a supply of portable and non perishable food.
- You can go for days without sunlight. (You go to class in the dark, you come home in the dark).
- You put up everything on your walls with drafting tape.
- Push pins become a valuable commodity.
- on Halloween you trick-or-treat in studio to get arch supplies or 'Red Bull.'
- Computers are known only as the white box of death. (They keep crashing on you).
- you can live without human contact, food or daylight, but if you can't print, it's chaos.
- Pencil smudges and ink smears are the bane of your existance.
- You start competing with each other for number of hours without sleep. (Less than 40 need not compete).
- redbull, coffee and cokes are tools, not treats.
- Your four basic food groups are candy, caffeine, coffee, and pretzels.
- Time spent with friends must be scheduled way in advance.
- you've slept more than 20 hours non-stop in a single weekend.
- you've listened to all your CDs/itunes
- you lose your house keys for a week, and you don't even notice.
- Days don't exist anymore, everything is based on number of hours of work. (Of which there are a lot).
- you've used an entire role of film to photograph the sidewalk. LOL done it...
- you take notes and messages with a rapidograph and colour markers.
- your parents have more of a social life than you.
- you're dating another architecture student.
- your friends get more sleep in one night than you do in one week.
- you know all the 24-hour food places in the area.
- you consider 3AM an early night.
- "scoring" involves an X-Acto blade
- you've got more photos of buildings than of actual people.
- you've taken your girlfriend on a date to a construction site.
- you've ever dreamt about your models.
- you start putting the address of your site down as your own
- upon hearing 'supermodel', you think of a nicely crafted-foam core model.
- when you are being shown pictures of a trip, you ask what the human scale is.
- you start wearing all black.
- you have no life, and admit it.
- you refer to outside studio as the "Real World."
- you can use Photoshop, Illustrator, Form-Z, AutoCAD, 3dstudio max, Indesign, and make a web page, but you don't know how to use Excel.
- you refer to great architects (dead or alive) by the first name as if you knew them. (Frank, Corbu, Mies, Norman...).
- you buy 50-dollar architectural magazines that you haven't read yet.
- when someone offers you a BIC pen, you feel offended.
- all of the Christmas gifts you give are wrapped in trace.
- you ask Santa Clause for architecture supplies.
- Everytime you tell someone what your Major is they just look at you and say, "I'm sorry."
- you CELEBRATE space and OBSERVE your birthday.
- you think it's possible to CREATE space.
- you fight with inanimate objects.
- you've fallen asleep in the school bathroom while brushing your teeth there
- you know the exact time the vending machines are refilled.
- you always carry your deodorant.
- when you try to communicate, you make a continuous and monotonous whine.
- you've danced YMCA (a fav clubdance number) with excellent choreography at 3 am and without a single drop of alcohol in your body.
- you see holidays only as extra sleeping time.
- you know the janitors by name.
- your roommates say "good morning," and you reply "good night."
- you start paying rent for your desk space in studio.
- you can't get a ride from 'Blacksburg Transit'. (ends at 2:45am)
- 'Red Bull' is you favorite drink.
- after all of your expenses, you can't afford to pay attention
- you have 3 or more cups of double shot coffee espressos in one night
- you hear the same song on the radio 3 or more times in one night.
- the only sleep you get is in your core classes.
- you spend more time in studio than in your own bed.
- your parents are complaining that you're not having enough fun.
- you only leave studio to buy supplies.
- you see showering as a waste of time.
- you enjoy hanging out at 'Home Depot'. LOVE that place :)
- everything you eat comes in single serving baggies
- the idea of a 24 hour 'Kinko's' make's perfect sense
- you're out on Friday nights in studio.
- the only building on campus with its lights on is your studios'.
- a break consists of moving your car.
- you receive mail in studio.
- you strangle your roommate because he said he stayed up late studying.
- you've memorized you favorite vending machine combination item (B6).
- your Friday night is 68 hours long.
- you know how much a cubic foot of concrete weighs (150lbs). haha duhh who doesn't know that?
- you understand why architects have glasses and white hair.
- you swear there are only 120 people at VT.
- you can conceptually compose the food on your plate.
- you have to wait for breakfast shops to open.
- you go to the oncampus Burger King, and order the "usual", and they understand.
- you use architecture tools to eat.
- you think "X-Acto Blade Throwing" is a sport.
- you only buy groceries once a month.
- you wake up to go to school and you're already there
- you start to critique a radio selection's selection of songs.
- you bring your friends to studio to keep you company. (or enlist them to help you do your project... i love my mexican :-D)
- you have memorized every radio commercial that airs after 10PM.
- you confuse today and tomorrow.
- you tell time by when other people leave studio.
- you can write your thesis paper by procrastinating.
- you count the number of days (not hours) you've been awake.
- Homecoming" happens once a week.
- on Halloween, you dress like your instructors.
- you see your own picture on a milk carton.
- you start using words your instructor uses.
- you contemplate suicide 3 times a day.
- you contemplate dropping your major 3 times a day.
- you have a tent pitched in studio, but still don't go to sleep.
- You wear your USB Drive around your neck
- The trunk of your car contains wood glue, a backup roll of trace, and a blanket... just in case.
- You daydream about the euphoric feeling of an ultra soft drafting brush on bare skin
- You are constantly picking drafting dots off the bottom of your shoes
- You think of "You know you're an Architecture major when..." lines in studio at 2 a.m.
- You realize that when someone is talking about French Curves they aren't talking about the girl they met over Spring Break
- Your roommate acts surprised if you're ever in your apartment
- When asked what day it is you have no idea, but always know how long until a project is due
- You use your alarm to tell you when to go to sleep
- You know what Tacky Glue tastes like
- You avoid eating, sleeping, or going to the hospital because you need to finish a model
- All of your teachers wear black only black
- When asked if you like the Guggenheim you reply Which one?
- You have an ample supply of B HB H & F and know the difference between them
- You think mechanical pencils are for sissies
- You use Soda as a tool, not a treat
- Youve never seen the other side of campus
- You have listened to every song on your iPod within two days
- You go to class to be marked present and then sleep until the lecture is over
- Telling your teacher your major actually gets you excused from work
- Your entire life savings was spent at Mish Mish during your first week of freshman year, since then you've just been getting deeper and deeper in debt.
- You know who Heath Hart is and you LOVE him.
- You are a "fourth year," not a senior cause you definately aren't graduating any time soon.
- You know how to silk screen your own t-shirts :-)
- You know how awesome those black sketch books made of recycled paper are.
- You have waited three hours in the middle of the night during competition week to print out a project, just to realize the damn plotter is spazzing out and
- there's no one to fix it until the next day.
- You've heard of the all powerful "Andy," but never actually SEEN him.
- You know that professors aren't required to come to class, ever.
- You've memorized the date and epoch, location, architect, and name of 95 buildings the night before Breitschmid's final, just to forget all of it the
second you walk out of Hancock.
- Professors are always called by their first names, obviously.

New Look


So I guess you realised that I changed my template.. I think it looks kewl..

Tell me what you think..

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The coolest ad campaign


This has to be one of the coolest ad campaigns that I have ever seen!!!!
I found it at the cool hunter..

I've basically copied it direct so full credit goes to them and Billy T..


If it hasn’t already won an award we think this ad for Folgers coffee should be first in line for the blue ribbon. Created by Saatchi & Saatchi NY, the clever campaign consists of delicious looking photos of coffee printed on vinyl and placed on top of steaming manhole covers around New York. Holes cut out of the photographs allow the steam from the manholes to rise through, created the effect of giant, steaming hot cups of coffee. Brilliant. Billy T"

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Knysna site model


So we have now moved onto our next project. The project is to build a holiday retreat for a family at the coast. We have a beautiful site in Knysna, which allows for exploration in timber construction.

For the first stage of our project we had to build a 1:100 site model to understand the fall and contours of this site. In my photos of the site model, I positioned the light source relative to the model, so that it was a true reflection of sun and shadow relationships.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Schindler and Lautner


On returning from our mid term break, we were required to analyse a house of RM Schindler. I had a look at the M Kallis Residence. I approached the house analysing ratio, proportion, aesthetic and future contribution. Through my own deduction, I felt that Schindler did not achieve the points set out through his Manifesto. John Lautner, on the other hand, did. While again analysing Lautner’s Carling house, I saw Schindler’s Manifesto brought to light in a beautiful array of light, shape, form, proportion, rational and style.

I produced 3 posters to visually explore the ideas that I felt necessary. Through a crit with Peter Rich, I was sent back to the PC to redesign my poster; as they were beautiful graphics, but not architecturally viable.

The new set of posters visually displays my intentions along with that of these two great Masters of architecture.
shadow relationships.

The New Posters

Welcome to those near and far..


I've noticed on my Site Metrer that I'm getting some traffic from all over the world. I'd like to take this moment to welcome all my guests and thank you for taking intrest in my blog.

Please leave a comment, so I know whether I'm on the right track. I love external input, so please don't be shy.