30 September 2010

it's CHAIR CARD time...

we're on our second batch of CHAIR CARDS, a deck of 50 modern furniture classics that students must draw as one rite of passage from their design history + theory course. this year, undergraduate teaching assistant brian peck has been named the CHAIR CARD CZAR and has documented some of the work of students on a separate blog: http://chaircards.wordpress.com/

in the image...check out the beautiful coffee-rendered cards of jasmine collins, the lovely colored pencil efforts of kara kooy, and the workmanlike pencil renditions of nathan howell (a biology major taking my class as an honor's student). cool!

the RANCH project begins

on wednesday, the students in my studio class gathered to measure the home of randy mcmanus. randy purchased the house a couple of years ago and has given a new lease on life to the 1959 commencement house, designed by woman's college students and greensboro architect edward loewenstein. this student project will focus on the public and private zones within the house. stay tuned for further developments.

18 September 2010

reading comprehension

in iar222, natalie and i have been perfecting the art of reading comprehension questions of different formats and approaches. check out the following blogs for some great examples of demonstration of reading and communicating prowess. congratulations to cassandra bradfield, kathryn frye, kayla mcdonagh, and justin mcnair as examples for raising the standards of reading comprehension blog work for the class.



you'll notice that a common theme among these writers is that they explicitly deal with evidence, use quotes and citations from the readings, and strive to move beyond the boundaries of the prompt to articulate their own opinions. well done!

09 September 2010

reading comprehension one

in iar222, natalie and i are exploring a new system for reading comprehension. in years past, i have assigned in class quizzes and that eats up class time...although my former teaching assistant, gwen mckinney, derived some excellent quizzes on the required reading. one goal for those quizzes was to work from both a visual and textual standpoint. so, natalie and i amended gwen's initial efforts (plus a change in textbooks) to try an out-of-class system. here's the prompts the students received.

and here are selected answers from four students, one for each of the prompts.

james mcnair : response to prompt 4...this has a nice reflection on design voice embedded within...


daniel salgado : response to prompt 3...with great observations about looking at things from the perspective of two cultures...


samantha smith : response to prompt 2...the textile analysis query (a beautiful analysis)


willard weston : response to prompt 1...commodity, firmness, and delight....well done!


08 September 2010

measuring up the BUNGALOW

willing homeowner cecelia thompson graciously opened the doors to her home for our BUNGALOW project. an avid cook and blogger, cecelia's dining room seemed an appropriate foray for our studio on residential design. check out cecelia's very cool cooking + food blog, modmealsonmendenhall.com

06 September 2010

the map project

imagine you receive a prompt from your instructor to manifest a MAP to describe four explicit design sites in history in four related 8.5" square compositions with four forms...that's what students tackled last week in iar222. we gathered in the crit room for a pin up and a discussion...

natalie and i then selected eight projects, which are now posted outside my office. these include the work of dajana nedic, weston willard, jasmine collins, raul garcia, nathan howell, alyssa hankus, leslie canipe, and kayla mcdonough. congratulations to all selected for display and for posting on the blog.

03 September 2010

and speaking of helpers...

the images in this post show undergraduate teaching assistants as they help with map project grading. top to bottom and left to right...katie o'boyle, maiken schoenleber | kalani gonzalez (well just his nose + profile), kelsey rhode, alli wilson, clairissa anderson | meghan kaufman, greg hickman | charese allen, cassandra gustafson | brian peck, syd gaskins.

in 2003, after one round of teaching iar221 + iar222, i recognized that i would need help...and thus began a tradition of inviting students who had complete the sequence to sit in again as undergraduate teaching assistants...experts to help lead discussion and to get to know students on a more one-to-one level than it's possible for me to do (with class sizes in the 80s and 90s). two heads are better than one....and, this semester, 14 are DEFINITELY better than two.


charese allen
clairissa anderson
syd gaskins
kalani gonzalez
cassandra gustafson
greg hickman
shane jones
meghan kaufman
katie o'boyle
brian peck
kelsey rhode
maiken schoenleber
carlos smith
allison wilson
i feel quite privileged in having these students be part of the teaching team.

introducing natalie lentz wall

a new school year begins with new people. for three years in iar221 + iar222, i was lucky to work with the fantastic gwen mckinney, one of the best teaching assistants with whom i have worked together. natalie wall brings new energy and insights to her position as a teaching assistant for iar222 this semester...and she brings professional experience, a great undergraduate education (with a degree from our program), and brilliant communication skills. i have always said to surround oneself with good people....and i feel like in natalie i've found an important partner for this history and theory of design ii course.