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October 31, 2002

pushing blocks

Just a fun little project we are doing in the studio, eventually everyone will have purchased 6 CMU's (cinder blocks in layman's terms) and we will be building wall and corner details as little experiments...in the mean time a few of us are playing around with what we have so far.





Posted by tbartels at 07:03 PM | Comments (0)

October 24, 2002

maya m i having fun

I have started playing around with Maya as a modeling tool for architecture, for years I have been hearing about how wonderful it is and how complex it is, unfortunately I, like most people, hear complex and assume that means hard. Boy, was I wrong. Anyway, some pretty big names are starting to use Maya as their tool of choice for architecture and other things, and I am quickly realizing why. Below is a really simple animation of a hammer I built from a single rectangle primitive shape, total time from opening Maya to rendered movie, about 90min. And that was my first time using Maya.

Posted by tbartels at 12:09 AM | Comments (4)

October 16, 2002

soak some up

Just doing a little research on a new site, we are working in Blue Springs State park. I have discovered that beginning in Nov. Blue Springs and the other surrounding springs will be in the midst of Manatee season beause the waters of the St. Johns River get too cold, and the Manatees move to the constant temperature waters of the springs. I have also found a few interesting things about past occupants of the site and surrounding areas.

Blue Springs
More Blue Springs
Springs of Florida -- Geological Survey Info, interesting, if you are into it.

I have seen this same writeup on about four different sites, and not one of them credits the other for it, is ther one fella out there making several websites for the same purpose?

For hundreds of years the Timucuan Indians made the spring area their home. The spring run, river and the surrounding swamps and uplands provided food, clothing, shelter and materials for tools and weapons. Snails gathered from sandbars were a staple food for these people. Over the centuries, the discarded shells formed a massive mound.

Three years after England acquired Florida from Spain, John Bartram, a prominent British botanist, explored the St. Johns in search of resources of value to the Crown. On January 4th, 1766, he rowed his boat past sunning alligators into the clear water of Blue Spring.

By the mid- 1800's most of the Indians had been killed or driven south and pioneer settlers took their place. In 1872, the Thursby family built a large frame home atop the Indians' shell mound, safe from the floodwaters of the St. Johns. The pilings of the steamboat dock remain, relics of a bygone era.

The same pristine beauty enjoyed by Florida's earliest residents still can be seen today. A self-guided boardwalk guides visitors through a lush hammock to Blue Spring.

The spring is much more than a scenic area for canoeing and swimming; it's a place that plays a vital role in the survival of one of Florida's most beleaguered residents - the manatee. An observation platform provides a view of the endangered mammals that gather at the spring during the cooler months of the year. From November through March, the manatees leave the colder waters of the St. Johns River for the safety and comfort of the 72-degree spring. A designated swimming area separates the bathers from the manatee refuge zone.

Timucuan Natives Historic Preserve
A man with a travelling Timucuan Village -- or so he claims.

Posted by tbartels at 08:09 AM | Comments (1)


So it has been so long since my last post that my default setting on this system decided to make my website blank, I thought I was hacked or something at first, but low and behold, everything is in order and I am just a little more paranoid than I previously believed.

In other news, the movie is finished, and once I understand a little more about how to get a decent compression on the movie I will upload it for all to see. The best experience would surely come from actually visiting my wonderful little site installation, but not everybody is close enough to do that.

We are moving on to the next phase of the semester now, beginning something a little more real -- how, you may ask, can you get more real than the something real that you have already built -- well, we now have a somewhat more solid program, not a completely firm program, but a general set of requirements that need to be met, the first step is to make decisions about how these requirements need to be considered in terms of the number of occupants and the usage of the structure. If I build a 3000 seat auditorium on this site, will anybody actually come to it? The overlying theme for the structure is a "Interpretive Center." I am imagining it is somewhere between an artist's day retreat to a snack machine house for the kiddies out in the woods. Of course the artists might like a 3 Musketeer's bar once in a while too.

On the side, our whole year/class, is working on a project with the digital imaging people over in the Computer Science Dept. We are learning how to use Maya to do some rainfall analysis of roof structures and site lines. I am pretty excited about learning Maya, but the rainfall simulation isn't turning out to be nearly as impressive as I had expected, but from what I can tell from my own experience, the software and technology we are looking for would be a pretty expensive and time-consuming endeavor. What does it all boil down to? Hopefully you will see some animations from my playing around in Maya, soon.

Posted by tbartels at 05:25 AM | Comments (0)

October 06, 2002

hee hee

-- The most frequently submitted joke, at 300 times, was: "What's brown and sticky? A stick."

Researchers said no one ever found it funny.

Posted by tbartels at 09:26 PM | Comments (3)

October 03, 2002

a little spire

jorge sanchez lara from guadalajara, mexico, says it all:
great book showing great dutch design. There is hope for design when you see this fellows working. If you already know their work then you won't doubt it to have it if you know a bit of them then trust me is something that will provocate you a big smile.

I picked up Droog Design: Less + More from the library and have found a few images and ideas that really make me smile.

I thought this one was just amazing, something to strive towards, I love how it takes into consideration the humanitarian aspect of design and how well it considers the real needs of a building, rather than adding something unnecessary.

I am still chuckling about this one, I wonder how I would have reacted to this.

This one I like just because of the photograph, the project was using gourds as household items, containers, bottles, etc., but what I like was how the wrapping paper, photographed with the wrinkle creates a sort of optical illusion where the fold occurs, and as you look at the upper gourds and then the gourds existing on the fold the third dimension is completely destroyed....get it?

Posted by tbartels at 06:49 AM | Comments (0)

October 01, 2002

ninety-nine percent

It is almost finished, and I actually got really excited about it earlier today, as I was getting rained on for the fourth time in just as many hours. When things started to work, and all of the pieces were getting put into place, I really felt pretty happy about it. Now whether or not that was just part of the satisfaction or completing something, or that I actually like my project, is up for debate, but either way, I was happy about something. I purchased some tie-down straps to temporarily aleviate the need for a tensile cable while I couldn't find the turnbuckle I needed, but on Monday, Prof. Maze's wife pointed me in the direction of a shop called Florida Fastners that carries exactly the part I need, so the end is very near.


I just realized that of all these pictures I don't have one that is of the portion completed as of this moment. You can see the whole thing in the movie, but it is a significant download at almost 20Mb. I need to learn a lot about video compression before I start putting too many videos up here, because these things are going to take up a lot of space.

Posted by tbartels at 11:05 PM | Comments (2)

effervescent rush

It was an ispirational day, at least in most aspects. My design class met as a whole on half of the classes sites so we could all see the completed projects, I hadn't realized how little I knew about each project, since we were all spending so much time at out sites, alone, without influence from each other in the studio. An Instrument for Understanding. I saw a tool for tide collection, that consisted of four windows suspended at different horizontal heights that would submerge as the tide came in, and collect different specimen off the beach as the tide went down. I stood on a 3ft. x 8ft. floating raft used to disguise and magnify the coast. I was enthralled by a movie of light cast from the canopy of devil's milhopper, there were 24 mirrors(as in 24 hours) that were each meticulously placed to reflect a condition of light onto a thin canvas that swayed in the wind, I was particularly amazed with this one because of it's ability to give light a third dimension, or at least to articulate the third dimension of light for me. I think my favorite was Lauren Daly's, she created a series of panels, seven in all, that extend from the solid, dry upper portion of the site down to the water's edge. The first four panels, farthest from the water, and as you approach the instrument, are static and positioned such that your view would be focused out onto the water and in the direction of "The Point" of palm point park, but as you move down the line, the last three panels are built like a gate, they are able to swing about 15 degrees off the center line and adjust according to the direction of the wind. It is really fun to think about how you start out trying to understand a view, seeing what someone else has put upon you, then by the same technique, the same materials and construction you are given the view, as selected by the site, changing from time to time, but still controlled.


These are not very good pictures of it, and they don't even give you a decent general idea of what is going on, at best you can see what one of the moveable panels looks like, and to the right of the first picture, you can see the author.

Posted by tbartels at 01:16 AM | Comments (0)