Landscape and sound (Alex)

20 11 2008

If you walk down the street at any given time you will hear different sounds. Some sounds may friegten you, some you may embrace. What distinguishes these sounds from one another. What makes one person like the sound of a dog barking, while driving someone else crazy. Our ears are sensitive to sound. They attract different waves which directs it to our brain which acknowledges it as a sound that we like or we don’t.

So it is actually our brain that is telling us what sounds are good, what sounds are bad, what is scary and what is comforting. A friend of mine grew up in the North End, around alot of street noise, and sometimes even disturbances. When she walks around a area at night such as Linden woods, she finds it scary because it is so silent. I find it comforting because I grew up around a similar area.

In a house down the block a neighbor put up Christmas lights with carols playing in the background. I love it. I grew up with Christmas music playing all through December and embrace all aspects of the Christmas season. Other people want him to shut it off completely. They consider it a disturbance. Maybe they don’t like Christmas, maybe they like the solitude sound of silence better.

So why do we react to sound in different ways. Our brain recalls memories and links it to different sounds, but it is also personal preference. What sounds may int erupt one persons life style may enhance anther. To create a balance would be difficult but learning to adjust to the different sounds around you, to some may be easy, but to others may find it impossible.


Green Community (Alex)

11 11 2008

Today’s guest speaker talked alot about different green communities. Because new design today seems to be geared in the direction of green design, and making the world ecologically friendly green communities are starting to take a bigger and more prominent form. Green communities try to incorporate the natural landscape with the built. Some important aspects of a green community are that it tries to separate itself from the other built environments around it. For instance their may be a residential zone with schools and corner stores within walking or biking distance. Car transport is not the preferred form of transportation as walking or talking the bus. Green space is Incorporated into the yards and around the houses to larger degres. There is a emphasis on the maintaining parts of the natural environment around them (such as less  cutting down of trees) The may also be a emphasis on thinks such as green roofs, composting, recycling plants, and sustainable heating or electrical solutions. The entire idea revolves around the community being ecologically friendly and at least partially self-sustaining and no longer needing to rely on things such as cars or large strip malls to form a community. As discussed in class there are more and more cities that are trying to encourage the development of green communities, not only to help make the city (and county) more environmentally friendly and appealing but to also help to do their part in creating alternate means to living a green life. Although I do not live in a green community myself, by doing small things like composting and even creating my own garden, I can do my part in helping the earth be as sustainable as possible.

Some good examples of cities with green communities integrated into them are Toronto and Dubai, here are some websites to look at their green communites.

Roses (Alex)

27 10 2008

I thought that while talking about colours and the different meanings of colours it was kind of interesting how different colours have specific meanings. For example the rose. There are many different colours of roses and all have a specific meaining  them. Your boyfriend or husband for example would more likely give you a red rose because is symbolizes passion. On your wedding day you may have a mixture of red and white roses, symbolizing passion and innocence. A friend may give you a orange rose to show friendship and enthusiasm. I find this interesting especially while studding design because roses are not the only vegetation that has meaning with colour. For instance, lilies and grass sometimes represent tranquillity and are soft whites and greens. You may see this in a meditation garden. Sunflowers may represent happiness and brightness. When someone had a rock garden or sand instead of vegetation it may represent solitude.

Look around you you may be surprised with all of the different colours of plats and vegetation. you may also be surprised about the emotion the comes out from you when you see that plant, like a rose.

EQ3 (Alex)

9 10 2008

As much as I enjoyed our field trip to EQ3, I think that it really opened my eyes to what I do not want to be a part of when it comes to product design.

I really do appreciate what the designers have made and will continue to make and design for the general public, however in my opinion it seemed that their creativity when it came to making products seemed to be limited. A chair for example was given as an example of how it went from being a sketch to the actual product and the process that it took to get there. The people working their commented on how they used European designs for inspiration at times and added their own style to it. However, throughout the process of actually putting the furniture on the market, it seemed as though the individualistic style was lost more and more along the way. I understand that designing for a store that sells so much to the general public, the products have to be somewhat contemporary, but I feel as though the products that were originally created by the design team was turned into an almost completely different product by the end of it’s run.

Although I do think that the furniture created by EQ3 is really nice, from a designers perspective I think I would rather work somewhere where the product I wanted to display were actually created in this way. While also keeping anthropometricin mind, I would really like to experience different design solutions to furniture and areas around us.

I really like some of the designs from the Quasi Modo furniture store. Here is the site if you wanted to check it out.

personal Space (Alex)

25 09 2008

I think designing for personal space is really important. Everyone seems to have their own comfort zone, while some people are more comfortable being around alot of people, some people prefer to have their own level of personal space. I for instance like to have my own space, and feel uncomfortable and crowded when too many people start to gather closely around me.

So how do you design for this? I think that designing for different people’s comfort levels can be difficult. For instance I recently heard (in ecology and design) that some married couples save up to for long periods of time to buy a large home that has alot of space for anything they want. However after a short period living in the actual house, some couples start to realize that their “dream” house is actually to large for what they want. There is no longer the close comfort level that they so crave, and therefore opt to purchase a smaller home that seems to fit their needs better. However, other couples that need alot of personal space for themselves may find the need to get out of their small, close net homes as soon as possible. 

Aside from buying different size homes, people can also redesign their lives to help fit their own comfort levels. Having less clutter may help people to feel so cramp, or even creating an area outside, like in their backyard for people to enjoy while having lots of room for themselves. Maybe needed more personal space also means creating a room in a house that is your own, and that is where you go to be alone, and not around other people.

Personal space is important to everyone, however different people need different levels of space. I think that designing for this is extremely important and at the same time very challenging. I guess it really put into perspective about designing for a specific client!!