Design Program

Form Composition. The steps of the design phase are as follows:
• Functional diagrams (conceptual)
• Preliminary design (general)
• Master plan (specific)
Functional Diagrams
The first step of the design phase is the development of functional diagrams (Fig­ure 4—5). Functional diagrams are discussed in Chapter 8. The designer uses freehand diagrammatic symbols to show the plan relationships of all the major spaces and elements of the design to each other, to the house, and to the site. In addition, the form and outline of structural ele­ments such as pavement areas, walls, and steps are apt to be drawn with more exact­ness in the master plan (Figure 4-8). They aid the designer in making aesthetic judgments about the overall design layout as well as the composition of design ele­ments such as plant materials, walls, and pavement patterns. Material composi­tion studies and develops the patterns on such structural elements as pavements, walls, and fences. Preliminary design concludes by drawing the preliminary plan (Fig­ure 4—7), which is then presented to the clients for their review. There are three important aspects of preliminary design that are considered simultaneously to create the pre­liminary design:
• Design principles
• Form composition
• Spatial composition
Design Principles. There are a number of other phases essential in completing a project in a professional manner. Rhythm concerns itself with the factors of time and movement. This step establishes specific shapes for all the spaces and elements developed in the functional diagram phase (Figure 4—6). Chapter 12 discusses the various characteristics and activities of the master plan in greater depth. The design program serves as a combined summary of the site analysis and client interview. This type of diagram is sometimes referred to as a concept plan. Master Plan
The master plan is a refinement or modification of the preliminary design that is drawn more precisely and with greater detail. Spatial composition is discussed more in Chapter 11. Unity is the visual relationship among the individual elements within the design. The three design princi­ples covered in this text are order, unity, and rhythm. The last step of the research and preparation phase is the development of the design program. DESIGN
Once the research and preparation phase of the design process is completed, the designer can proceed to the design phase. This development of forms establishes a visual theme, which furnishes an overall sense of order in the design. As stated earlier in this chapter, research/preparation and design are the two phases of the design process addressed most comprehensively in this book. All three of these design principles are considered together when prepar­ing the preliminary design. Also, the exact species of plant mate­rials are likely to be specified on the master plan, whereas only general terms identify plants on the preliminary design. During this step, the designer may explore alternative organizations of the basic functional layout before selecting the best idea. This is often the designer’s first attempt at organizing the overall arrange­ment of the design on paper. For example, a bubble that represents an out­side living space on the functional diagram is now given a definite form that may be composed of a series of specific shapes. This spatial composition must consider the height and volume relationships among the various design elements to create a de­sign that is practical and pleasing to the eye. Similarly, the edge of a lawn area is drawn with a definite line, such as an attractive curve. Whereas the preliminary plan often identifies the general material of a given design element, the master plan goes further to study and show more de­tailed pattern. In this phase, the designer studies and prepares the actual design solution based on the client interview, site analysis, and program. Design principles are aesthetic guidelines that help the designer create a visually pleasing design solution. One key feature of the master plan is material composition. These other phases are outlined in the following sections. Spatial Composition. Each space is drawn as a freehand bubble that depicts its relative size, proportion, and configuration.

Updated: 29.10.2014 — 17:07