Journal of Design Insight

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

Strategy: Layer Design Form to Direct Your Occupant’s Attention

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

When you design architecture, are you aware of the visual layers which you create? Now, rarely is a work of architecture viewed in pure elevation in the real world — so studying the three-dimensional layering within your design could result in some amazing effects. For instance, layering often leads to rhythm and/or transparency (depending on design form and placement). And with rhythm and transparency, you can create depth, texture,...

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Strategy: Know What Your Occupants Perceive When They Look Around

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

As you design your architecture, notice not only the common vantage points, where your occupants look straight ahead as they travel through your building, but also vantage points like when they look upward. While occupants don’t often look upward while walking through your building — you may want to reward them for being just curious enough to look in other directions: upward, left, right, and downward. Remember your occupants aren’t...

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Strategy: Understand How to Design With Building Proximity In Mind

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

When you design your architecture, give attention to the way you engage neighboring buildings. Pay attention to the proximity between your building and theirs, and find ways to respond — whether by using contrast, juxtaposition, or paralleling. Also, give attention to the surrounding culture and context where your building will reside. Understand problem areas that neighboring buildings create for the community, for you may try to solve for those...

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Strategy: Have Your Design Answer to Scale

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

When you design architecture, how do you think about scale? Is it something that you simply understand intuitively, where you design for it on the fly? Or do you try to make statements with your architecture about scale? …where you give some serious thought to the behaviors, emotions, and thinking that may go on for an occupant when you provide for spaces of different scales? In the image above, you can see how the scale is enlarged — as...

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Strategy: Use Transparency with Form to Play with Light in New Ways

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

Within most buildings, transparency manifests through typical windows and skylights that occur throughout the building. Yes, they let in light — but are they really a “sculptural” part of the architecture? You might ask: How much do these fenestrations contribute to the interior space for occupant perception and functionality? You see, when transparency becomes part of the architectural form, a few things begin to happen. This mindset...

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Strategy: Give Attention to Transition Between Architectural Elements

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

The transition that exists between your different architectural elements can really help to guide your occupant’s gaze (visual attention) as they scope out your work. You see, perception is really an act of exploring — and when you guide your occupants to explore within your work, you are in a sense inviting them to experience it more intimately along their journey. So, as you design your different architectural elements, and the way they...

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Strategy: Find Creative Ways to Detail within Your Building

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

For your building, it may help for you to develop an architectural language that relates to your building’s scale, material, and location. And as part of this language are the all-important details. Use sensory design to make your details come alive, just as the Ronchamp image above uses its details to bring poetics through its form. Thus, you should use detail to do more than “fill in” a design void. Instead, use it make architecture...

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Strategy: Find New Ways To Sculpt A Ceiling

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

When your occupants look upward, what do they feel? A sense of awe? Amazement? A yearning to continue on their journey through your building? Designing a ceiling is of critical importance — and not just because this is from where much of the lighting may come. A ceiling can be sculpted to reveal masses and voids which complement what goes on below. Wonderful domes often connect occupants to the heavens, and lower ceilings often create great...

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Strategy: Explore Your Material’s Static and Transient Qualities

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

The image above of The Palais Des Congres De Montreal shows how the selection of an architectural material (colored glass exterior panels) can have numerous effects that reach well into the realm of providing for a unique and positive occupant experience. As you select materials for your built space, think of more than simply how it will sit in its static position within the architecture. Think of its transient properties — created when light...

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Strategy: Building that Broadcasts Real-Time Information

Featured Image Takeaway Design Strategy:

Have you ever thought about a building skin being used to broadcast real-time information? Perhaps it doesn’t have to be a direct broadcast, but rather an interpretation of information — a sort of architectural information visualization. The image above is simply to get you thinking about the exterior of your building skin, as an element which can pull or push data. Such data can be conveyed to occupants within or to building visitors in...

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