January 31, 2010

crypto craftsmen

“You can be very talented, but it’s the doers who get places in the world,”said Randy Brown at 8:0am Monday morning. In other words don’t lack motivation. During our Monday morning meeting, we sat around the table and discussed how we could become “craftsman” of our own trade. We tossed around ideas on what it takes to be considered a craftsman and how that trait affects the work we produce. This type of mentality is what we focused on during the week with the projects we were working on.

My specific duty was to take the Loren Eiseley Center from its underdeveloped schematic state and revamp it. It is a unique project in that it is an institution for several different things. It houses the Loren Eiseley Society, a laboratory for the Nebraska Small Energy Society, and a lab for studying the Allwine Prairie, on which it is located. One of the most difficult things about this project was finding the commonality between all of these functions for this particular institution. After spending time researching who Loren Eiseley was and what the other organizations were all about, I began to develop design solutions that would tie everything together. After a few days of focused thinking and designing, a more unified solution was determined. The concept was tightened and focused on what was important, the preservation of the Allwine Prairie.

The last half of the week was focused on getting books prepared for printing for Randy’s New York City trip. Every year, Randy travels to NYC and visits various magazine editors to have his work published in their publications. This year, Architectural Record, Contract, Metropolis, and Interior Design were a few of the publishers he would be showing his work to. What that meant was that we had to find the images that were taken of the finished projects, pull together the finished drawings and make touch ups as necessary, and put any renderings or diagrams that convey the “story” of the project into an InDesign file. I can say that helping put these books together enabled me to learn more about RBA and the work that has been done in this firm than any other learning method could have. Seeing the pictures, reading project descriptions, and working with the drawings were what made the difference then someone just describing the project. It has been a hands on experience (and still is as we have the rest of next week to finish putting the books together and printing) and has proved to be an effective way of learning.

With the work week at its end, the weekend proved to be relaxing. I went back to Kansas City Friday night and stayed there for the weekend. It was my father’s birthday so the weekend was all about family, friends, and food. Being the first time home since I left for the internship, it was nice to go back and get a change of scenery for the weekend. Feeling refreshed Sunday afternoon, I traveled back north on I-29 and prepared for the upcoming week of finishing those publication books for New York City.

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