WSOA In-Flux is a publishing platform for student work launched by Woodbury School of Architecture in 2020.

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Portraits in Motion ︎ Visualization 4

ARCH 565
ARCH 3743
Spring 2020 ︎

Los Angeles

Ryan Tyler Martinez

Work by B.Arch student Lucas Mok

A still life is a work of art depicting mostly inanimate subject matter, typically commonplace objects which are either natural or man-made. In this class we  focused on animate subject matter (movement, transformation, animation, effects, and sound) as an alternative approach to representing contemporary still life motifs with an emphasis on architectural subjectivities.  We focused on blurring the boundary between multiple scaled objects and functions like bottles and buildings, fabrics and facades, and cups and columns among many geometric, graphic, and object-oriented ontologies.

Work by M.Arch student Nick Daniel

Similarly, to the Academy of Beaux Arts, this seminar began with a 21st century version of “still life” through the use of contemporary techniques. Instead of using conventional representational techniques, this class explored the use of Rhino, Autodesk Maya, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe After Effects as a tool for productivity. Reflecting this shift in current professional and academic discourse, the class explored how the use of software redefines the concept of motion in architectural representation. Students were encouraged to think in terms of technique and composition, instead of abstraction and misalignment of parts.

Work by B.Arch student Christian Boling

This seminar focused primarily on teaching students how to digitally model different types of formal and representational motifs with an emphasis on motion and animation as a tool for representation. Each student designed a digital still life which  helped position and expand their understanding of representational techniques and tools. Students were introduced to MASH, a plug in for Autodesk Maya that supports the production of motion and gravity in a digital environments. Later in the semester, students learned how to render animations in AutoDesk Maya using Arnold Render and Adobe After Effects.

Work by M.Arch student Mahzad Changalvaie

Work by M.Arch student Zhanming Liu

As a point of departure, we looked at the work of Christian Rex Van Minnen, Le Corbusier, Jennifer Bonner, and Aldo Rossi amongst many others. These precedents were used as a foundation for developing skills in constructing compositions, rendering and polygonal modeling. Students also revisited tea and chess sets in architecture as a 3d modeling exercise. The course project allowed students to learn multiple modeling, texturing and rendering techniques. Students explored multi-platform workflows to develop fundamentals in polygonal mesh modeling and representational techniques. Students learned techniques in Autodesk Maya, Rhino, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe After Effects.

Work by B.Arch student Fumiya Ishii

Work by M.Arch student Cody Carpenter

Course Organization
This course focused on specific assignments. Each student was required to 3D model objects, animate a scene, and produce a final film/animation at the end of the semester. Each object should have its own texture map, rendering style, and output which will eventually be aggregated into one animated composition. The objects are specified as follows: Graphic Blob, The Everyday Object, Accidental Form, Spherical Envelope with Hard Edges, The Aggregated Primitive Shape, Tea Set, Chess Set, Building Element, The Architectural Tool.

Some student used alternative objects for their final animations like primitive shapes and basic geometry. As a class, the students interrogated sets of 3D modeled leafs, rocks, plants, bowls and/or stands into their composition. These objects were used in collaboration to each student’s seven objects to create beautifully composed portraits in motion. The use of chiaroscuro lighting techniques and gradient styled backgrounds created a juxtaposition between familiar still life paintings from the past and the new work produced by the students.

Catalog Description

Students advance visualization skills through experimentation with shifting representational technologies, including and surpassing digital fabrication tools and innovative softwares (not limited to BIM, Catia, GIS, Grasshopper/Rhino, rendering engines, and/or website production).