Chapter summary

Probably, but you will only find out by trying them. Knowledge gained from past experience is certainly one part of the solution. Architects must use their critical judgement and exploit their capacity for reinvention to ensure that design- studio culture remains fluid, positive, accessible and relevant. This sketch of a group tutorial shows the hands – on participatory nature of the design studio, with students discussing the development of a prototype that they are making with a tutor. The problem with this method is that it can be difficult for you to predict what you need to learn. Architectural experiences, influences and inspirational tutors or colleagues contribute towards the making of an architect but each person responds differently to these stimuli and must make their own value judgements. This chapter describes the cerebral process of design and the skills needed to implement design ideas and develop as an architectural designer. For example, you may wish to develop the internal space of a building but are not sure whether it should follow the external form, burst out of it or express an entirely different form. Architectural design problems are complex and require creative solutions. On visiting different architects’ offices and architecture schools it is clear that they are tremendously diverse. However, the architect must also use their critical judgement. This seems like a very inefficient way of doing things: surely one answer must be better than another. Once you have explored and begun to commit to certain directions, this will lead you to make subsequent moves in related directions. At its worst this culture can become self – referential, clubby, exclusive and even irrelevant to the rest of the world. If there is no such thing as one right answer to any architectural problem, how do architects make decisions about the right answer for their project? Every design studio has its own sub-culture but this is still linked, however tenuously, to the rest of the profession. It can also lead to recognition by peers and, by implication, advancement in the profession. Ultimately, the moment of design springs from the individual imagination, no matter how collaborative the circumstances that provoked it. What is the right answer? Year one group tutorial
Sketch drawn for the PAL (Peer Assisted Learning) project undertaken by Justus Van Der Hoven and Jamie Williamson. The better the architect understands their actions, the greater their freedom to develop and explore the different possibilities inherent in their own design process. This chapter attempts to define experiences and skills that are common to all architects engaged in the design process and to give substance to some of the more cerebral and intangible qualities of architectural design. There will never be consensus. The tutorial is a loosely structured discussion involving questions and answers passed freely between tutor and student until both parties reach agreement on the progress and direction of the project. You may imagine a few possibilities to explore that seem in tune with the concept so far.

Updated: 28.10.2014 — 14:15