Architecture Student Aut Angpanitcharoen’s Travel Diary

1

Just before the exam I took a trip to the beach with a couple of friends for an afternoon of revision, tea, oysters and eventually dinner. Whitstable turned out to be a great venue for reading, although if you are planning on doing this yourself, do remember to bring paperweights with you.

The beach can get pretty windy and wet notes aren’t quite as informative as dry ones.

2

After the stress of the Nineteenth Century Architecture exam and the final structural report hand in passed, I found myself with plenty of free time to start enjoying life again. So I picked up my sketchbook and my favourite watercolour set and have been busy. Well, not that busy.

Yesterday whilst waiting for the clock to strike seven, I got bored and decided to go for a stroll around the city centre. I have to admit it wasn’t the best day for a walk, hence I only ended up with this fairly quick sketch. The line work is particularly rushed as by the time I decided to put pen to paper, I was already late for dinner.

This is one of my favourite spot in Canterbury, the cobbled narrow street and shop signs frame Bell Harry perfectly.

3

I have been drawing the cathedral a lot recently. Just a few days ago, fellow aspiring architect, Prinka Anandawardhani and I took an impromptu visit to the cloisters and spent half an hour sketching. Hers is a little better than mine so I chose to omit a scan of it to avoid competition.

4

The restoration process for the cathedral is forever on going, the result of the successful “Save Canterbury Cathedral” Appeal launched in 2006. Though it is a shame that in order to save it, parts of the building and its surrounding complex has to be covered up. It was slightly frustrating that when my friends came for a day visit, Christ Church Gate was concealed behind scaffoldings and tatty white fabric. Well guys, if you’re reading this, here it is. Through my eyes. For more accurate representations go to google images.

http://www.canterbury-cathedral.org/supporting-us/

5

Finally, to end this ramble. My favourite sketch at the moment, this one of St Paul’s Cathedral from the 1 New Change rooftop, right by St Paul’s station. I would seriously recommend going there for a great view of London and a day out sketching.

6

By Aut Angpanitcharoen – Stage 2 BA (Hons) Architecture

Student Profile – Srimathi Aiyer

shrimpySrimathi Aiyer

5th Year Master in Architecture (MArch) Student

I was brought up in Stratford, East London, with a family originating from South India. I discovered I was into illustration from an early age and I still draw cartoons as a hobby to this day in my spare time. I get most of my inspiration for anything creative I do from film, animation and world travel.

Why did you choose KSA? 

I am impressed that KSA has increasingly gained recognition both in the league tables and general word of mouth as a school with a wide curriculum that covers design, technology and cultural aspects. I feel the modules being taught covers the essentials needed, without it completely focusing on the artistic or theoretical side alone; therefore that broad range of teaching is what convinced me to join KSA. Canterbury is also a beautiful place to live in and there are easy travel links toLondon and other neighbouring towns in Kent.

What are you currently working on? 

I am working on my final Masters thesis project, where the site I picked is in America. I always have had a fascination for America, so to focus on historical and contextual interests from that country that influence my project is incredibly motivating and I am excited to see how my scheme turns out. I am currently designing a spa centre that revolves around the spiritual journey and thermal sensations of the four elements: earth, wind, fire and water.

shrimpy 2Tell us about your study period abroad 

Doing my Autumn term in Virginia Tech, USA as part of my 5th Year was an experience I will never forget. I got to immerse myself in new ways of teaching and approaches to design. Furthermore, I got to interact with tutors and students, not just from America but all around the world too. It was intense, but everyone helped each other in an enthusiastic studio environment. Washington DC was within close proximity, so I ensured I was on top of work before travelling around the city and other states in the USA. I think I got more of a reverse culture shock when I got back to the UK, rather than when I first arrived there!

How would you describe your architectural approach?

What I have discovered is my designs are simplistic on the outside, but I then attempt to break lines of symmetry inside and focus more on key moments or views as you turn a corner or generally move around a building. My proposals prioritise user experience, so there will be some moments where movement is controlled or slowed down and other times when it’s more open and free. Then the architectural language will be structured around that user approach and use.

What advice would you give to someone embarking on an architectural degree?

This is coming from someone who, at the age of eighteen, had stage fright, struggled with time management, had so mind blanks when searching for ideas and followed the crowd who would tell you that they never sleep or eat. It took time, but I have found myself in architecture and you can too if you put your heart into it. I can now say I have grown to a point where I do manage my work much better, I handle presentations a lot better and I do a lot more research and reading (and sketching too!) to get ideas. And you concentrate better in good health. It’s primarily two things: confidence and self-belief. And those are two qualities that don’t get graded but are celebrated a lot more in the end.

Student profile – Luísa Pires

louisa

 

Luísa Pereira Pires

2nd year bachelors

 

I am from Lisbon, Portugal and lived there for 15 years. I then moved to Bonn, Germany and then came to study here in Canterbury. I developed my love for architecture since I was very young, Lisbon is full of beautiful architecture and I am fascinated by it. As I grew up I developed an interest for Arts, Science and History, it became evident to me, at the age of 13, that I would want to become an architect some day.

– Why did you choose KSA?

I chose KSA because it is well located geographically , it is international and has a good reputation.

– What are you currently working on?

Currently I have just finished a proposal for the competition of the Eliot cloister garden which I did in collaboration with Aut. Our aim was to create an interactive structure that also delimited the public and more private spaces. We did this by designing an ellipse composed by timber slabs at different progressive angles that allows for shelter sitting and leaning. I am now working on my proposal for the Collective Dwelling module , for the town of Faversham as well as on my Form and Structure proposal for a roof.

louisaa-Which building or architect has had the greatest influence on your work?

I feel like it is still too early to define what architect or building greatly influences my work. Although I very much admire contemporary works such as “A placa” by Siza and works by Calatrava I also find traditional and historic buildings, such as Cologne Cathedral, inspiring. For me it is a matter of defining a context and circumstances and then look for inspiration by taking those into consideration.

– What advice would you give to someone embarking on an architectural degree? 

I have an advice given by Frank Ghery : You are the expert in your own work.  My own advice is you need to be able to handle criticism well enough to not let it affect the confidence you have in your work. You need to believe in yourself and not give too much importance to the grades that you get but pay close attention to the feedbacks because those are the ones that help you improve. Also you will learn that you are unique in the way you do things and that good Architecture is a subject almost always based on opinion.

 

Student Profile – Benjamin Nourse

Benjamin Nourse

Second Year BA (Hons) Architecture Student

 

– Tell us about yourself (Background etc)

I grew up in a rural region of North Essex. I’m fascinated in environmental and cultural conservation and finding new means in which to express interesting ideas. Architecture is our opportunity to make a spatial difference to the world. Architects and engineers are the creators of the future.

– Why did you choose KSA?

Canterbury has the perfect balance of world famous architecture and beautiful natural landscape. It is a completely awe inspiring place to live and work. The studio is a vibrant non-stop hub of ideas bouncing from all directions. The KSA itself, compared to other schools, addresses the scale of architecture in a far different way. We are encouraged to think out the box but not so far that the idea of the box no longer exists. The KSA teaches to combine environment, structure and design which fundamentally are the employable skills that can be applied to the real world. The school has a very intimate style of architecture that I couldn’t personally find anywhere else.

– What are you currently working on?

standard quay montage medium

A project based 300 years into the future. My site is based in Faversham with an approximate average of 3m above sea level. Based on future climate predictions made by the IPCC, I have devised a story for the next three centuries of Faversham. Unfortunately, it is a tale of a watery end for most of the land but also a story of drastic cultural preservation, including vast underwater tunnels and floating living developments. The idea is perhaps a ‘Noah’s Ark’ for culture, including many historical and yet to be historical inspirations. This project is a solution to a disastrous story that unfortunately, will happen.

Check out what else I’m up to:    http://noursebenjamin.wix.com/benjamin-nourse

– Which building or architect has had the greatest influence on your work?

Archigram, Kenzo Tange, Cedric Price, CJ Lim, Bryan Cantley.

– What advice would you give to someone embarking on an architectural degree?

Always be humble but as soon as you learn the rules, break them. Personally I’ve found that creativity and playfulness is the best way to approach architecture. It’s such a demanding complex subject, we too often forget to enjoy it.

Student Profile – Themba Mtwazi

Themba Mtwazi

Themba Ben Mtwazi

I’m a product of the 80s, born and bred in post independence Zimbabwe. My father was a small time, self taught screen printer, pop artist and a partisan of Andy Warhol and his movement. Growing up surrounded by bottles of ink and stencils; music and graffiti; third world norms and politics; these life encounters of craft and societal barriers somehow merged to become the design of infrastructure – Architecture

Why did you chose KSA?

KSA for me was a no-brainer; a fairly new school just over 5 years old at the time, already sitting at number 6 on the architecture league tables…… I had to find out what the secret was.

What are you working on at the moment? 

There are a few things which I am working on at the moment:

– Faversham creek revitalisation project, Faversham, Uk

– 39 Llewelyn road cottage design, Gweru, Zimbabwe

– Third article for the RIBA blogs (for the first two follow the links below)

      http://www.ribablogs.com/?p=9385 
      http://www.ribablogs.com/?p=9362 

– recently completed poster designs on HIV Criminalisation for the Denialism and Human    rights conference recently held at Maastritch University, Netherlands

10966538_928407660523976_231837343_nWhich building or architect has the greatest influence on your work?

I think architecture is a journey of discovery, it’s like a tour in a foreign town, with what’s lying round the bend totally unknown. I guess until I can say I have encountered ‘every’ architect’s/designer’s work in the world, shall I able to say I have found that ‘ONE’; but so far I am intrigued by Peter Zumthor, Santiago Calatrava and Renzo Piano’s work.

What advice would you give someone embarking on an architectural degree?

A drawing or a sketch is the picture of one’s latent thoughts.The trick to being a good design student lies in how you are able to express and manipulate an idea on a physical piece of paper.

Introducing Edward Powe – KSA’s new Student Social Media Assistant

student profile piccy 2


Edward Powe – Second Year BA (Hons) Architecture Student

I grew up in Torquay, Devon in South West England in a family working predominantly in the tourism industry. I have always had a fascination with building design and with a brother who also studies Architecture, our dinner table conversations became more and more involved with discussing ideas for solving problems and efficiency improving strategies for tourist attractions.

– Why did you choose The Kent School of Architecture?

The two most important factors which influenced my application to the Kent School of Architecture were its rising reputation in the league tables and its proximity to the historic city of Canterbury. If I am going to be studying for at least three years in any one place, it has to be somewhere I can enjoy living, Canterbury ticked all of the boxes for me.

– What are you currently working on?

The main module I am working on at the moment is a master-planning strategy for Faversham Creek in Kent. Working in groups we were asked to consider ways in which traditional maritime industry can be merged with new businesses in order to boost local tourism. We will then use these ideas to propose a viable strategy to rejuvenate Faversham Creek and Faversham town centre.

As well as this module we also have two others, one which looks at steel structures and forms which can be incorporated into our designs, and a history module teaching us about 19th century English architecture.

Click here to view my online portfolio.

Layout1

Which building or architect has had the greatest influence on your work?

Last year a module called Ancient and Medieval Architecture focused on the architectural periods which influenced the design of Canterbury cathedral. Many of the seminars for this module took place within the cathedral itself, which is probably why I have become so attached to it as a place of inspiration. I am fascinated by the different layers of history waiting to be discovered on every visit.

– What advice would you give to someone embarking on an architectural degree? 

 One thing which I have come to realise during my time at the Kent School of Architecture is that although an architectural degree will teach you how to ‘design’, there are many other lessons which are often overlooked. For example, as you progress through the years, you will quickly learn how to juggle workloads as they themselves increase. This is done to prepare you for the manner of work you will encounter after your degree.

When I first chose to study architecture, many of the people I talked to told me that I was in for a lot of hard work, however, what they failed to mention is that as workloads increase, so too does your ability to manage them.

Student Profile: Katarzyna Oskroba BA (Hons) Stage 3

Kasia Oskroba Photo for student profile

Coming from abroad to study at Kent has been a great adventure, and not for one day of being here have I regretted taking it up. The good reputation of the Kent School of Architecture and a  promise of a safe and pleasant living environment contributed to my decision to choose it over other universities.  Even though I took a risk by doing so, without visiting the campus beforehand, I was not disappointed. 

Currently I’m about to enter my third year of the Architecture BA (Hons) programme. I know that even moreso than the second year that it is going to be a challenge – straining both my intellect and my time management skills –  but I’m excited to learn even more about design, history and software. Part of the reason for my enthusiasm is KSA’s range of enthusiastic lecturers and tutors. They are not only experts in their own field, but also approachable and helpful individuals (often with colourful personalities). I appreciate the fact that during our projects we are given the opportunity to arrange meetings with our tutors and seek additional advice. Yet we are also encouraged to be creative and think outside of the box in order to realise our ideas.

My favourite module so far was Landscape, in which we were to design a wellness centre with theraupetic gardens. I enjoyed it the most because it opened my eyes to the ways greenery  can define open space, and how it can influence the image of buildings.

The group of architecture students at Kent is a very mixed crowd and, as cliched as it sounds, I very much enjoyed meeting people of various cultures and nationalities. Talking to students from completely different backgrounds about architecture, or even everyday matters, can be stimulating. The course is so demanding that a lot of us spends most of our days at the studio, working side by side; but that can only end up in either fierce rivalry or close friendship, right?

I like the fact that all of the facilities at KSA – computer and drawing studios, printers, workshop, and so on – are contained within one building. Last year we gained a new facility – the ‘Crit Room’, our department’s pride and joy, with its large touch screens which we now use for presentations. They are a step forward in the digitalisation of the coursework, but what I’m more looking forward to is next year’s rearrangement of Studio 3 which should bring more workspace for students.

Even though one of the consequences of taking my course is very limited spare time, I do my best to keep an illustrated journal of my everyday experiences and therefore always trying to improve my hand-drawing and painting techniques. I’m also a part of Kent’s Article 25 group, organising events to fundraise for this development and disaster relief charity. If I manage to squeeze in a good book and a long walk somewhere in between all these activities, I’m the happiest architecture student under the sun. After this course, I hope to follow a career in architecture, which includes an MA, but I will also be on the lookout for illustration-related opportunities.

To anyone considering studying architecture, be aware of the fact that it requires extremely hard work and dedication, but will equip you with a very wide range of skills and, above all, offers a new perception of the world around you.