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Journal of Design Insight

Behind the scenes into the studio works of Maria Lorena Lehman.
EXPLORE JOURNAL TOPICS

Architectural Design for the Human Eye

WHEN THE HUMAN EYE BLINKS…

Did you know that the second most complex organ in your body after your brain is your eye? (1) The human eye contains many processes all working together to help you perceive visual queues in a continuous way. However, when foreign matter or heightened stimuli (like loud sounds or bright lights) occur, a blinking reflex is activated — and usually when one eye blinks the other follows.

GEOFF MANAUGH ON “BLINKSPOTS”

In a thought-provoking...

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Understanding the Perception of Interior Spaces

Have you ever wondered what effects optical illusion can have on architecture?

Well, there are some simple and specific things designers can do to alter the perception of interior spaces.

OPTICAL ILLUSIONS THAT CHANGE YOUR PERCEPTION

Things like color, lighting, interior element placement, integrated (horizontal or vertical) lines and even mirrors can have a huge impact on the size, proportion and mood of a space. I came across the article entitled Interior Design Optical Illusions...

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What is the Role of Human Memory in Architecture?

This is a “loaded” question, but …

The beautiful thing about architecture is that it can “tap into” an occupant’s past meaningful experiences through their senses and their emotion. Architecture also has the power set the stage for occupants to create new meaningful experiences — and memory plays a key role in helping to make all of this possible.

INFLUENCING PERCEPTION AND DECISION-MAKING

Although the role of human memory in...

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What Gets the Most Visual Attention in Your Architecture?

FOCAL POINTS HELP OCCUPANTS MAKE DECISIONS

There are so many details that come together to make a wonderful architectural design; but what gets the most visual attention when someone sees a work of architecture? How does visual attention play into an occupant’s experience? The key is to understand that attention is a gradual process of adaptation where what gets our attention in the first moment may not get our attention moments later. Let me explain…

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Your Brain: How Architecture is “Food for Thought”

HOW ARCHITECTURE INFLUENCES YOUR BEHAVIOR

The architecture which surrounds you influences your thought, and subsequently your behavior. Understanding this relationship between the environment and your mind is important – particularly if you are a designer of such environments. Your brain is not only hard-wired to interpret certain spatial characteristics in certain ways, but your mind also plays a role in how you make decisions based on those interpretations....

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Understanding Beauty in Architecture: Guiding Neuroaesthetics

Can we define what makes a beautiful space? Well, the study of neuroaesthetics is trying to uncover qualities that come together to yield beauty. In the magazine SEED, the article entitled Beauty and the Brain explains that “An object’s beauty may not be universal, but the neural basis for appreciating beauty probably is.” The article goes on to describe how neuroscience findings regarding direction, location and dimensions of space will have profound...

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The Significance of “Surface” for Architectural Design

The way humans perceive the world is through their senses that use certain rules by which they navigate. For instance, the use of perspective, stereopsis, occlusion, shading and sfumato are all listed in Scientific American Mind’s article A Perspective on 3-D Visual Illusions as rules that “create a 3D formation about our world”. The human brain and nervous system sees this 3-dimensional world on 2-dimensional eye retinas. Thus, rules are used to...

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Visualizing Information: Toward a Persuasive Architecture

You may have heard of it — Visualizing Information, a field that represents information, living or static, to uncover, highlight or focus on meaning often made elusive by data. Needless to say, such ways of seeing information are often persuasive, as data re-presents itself in more tangible form.

What if we could tell what is happening inside a building simply by looking at its exterior facade? With such techniques architects could embed new ways of seeing information into the...

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How Vertical Illusion Affects Perception in Architecture

So, how steep is it? In the latest issue of SciAm Mind magazine an article describes how humans have trouble accurately determining height and slope of vertical inclines. To make matters more interesting, the article goes on to discuss how our perceptions are affected. It seems that if you are accompanied by friends (or supportive people) an incline will appear less steep. Conversely, if one is carrying a heavy load then the incline will appear steeper. Thus, the way inclines are interpreted...

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Restaurant Architectural Design Makes for Healthy Eating

An article “To Tame the Belly, Mange the Brain” in The Boston Globe (November 19th, 2008) by Carolyn Y. Johnson discusses how eating is “as much about the brain as it is about the stomach”.  Given this, doesn’t it make you wonder about the importance of restaurant or your home’s dining room design? Since the act of eating is more than just about the flavor of the food — lighting, color scheme and air circulation all play a role in how your body...

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