Joint Compilation

A compilation of all the joints produced during the 1st semester, with updated photographs.

Click on the images to enlarge them.

The 3x3 square joints, both study and final models.

The 3×3 square joints, both study and final models.

The first two of the four total 3x3x9 inch joints. Only study models were produced for the first two.

The first two of the four total 3x3x9 inch joints. Only study models were produced for the first two.

The second two of the four total 3x3x9 inch joints. Both study and painted basswood models were produced for the second two.

The second two of the four total 3x3x9 inch joints. Both study and painted basswood models were produced for the second two.

The final site model.

The final site model.

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Final Site Model – Stage 3

The third and final stage of our final project for the semester (the site model) consisted of its physical construction. I chose to construct the model out of a variety of materials, some of which worked better than others. The base was to be high-density Styrofoam, as my original plan was to use the milling machine located in the fabrication shop to construct it. However, at that point I did not fully understand what the machine could be used for, and learned quickly that the ground for my model was not suitable. This meant it had to be constructed by hand, which was certainly less than desirable as it tends to flake and tear easily, and it will dull your blade extremely quickly (lots of joint compound was used to fill in the cracks). The upper pieces were constructed using a mixture of cold press (a form of high-density task board, which is in itself essentially high-density cardboard) and basswood. Utilizing the laser cutter also located in the fabrication shop allowed for much quicker construction of the model.

The model quickly became a much larger project than I had originally anticipated, mainly due to the absolutely massive quantity of parts (a rough calculation brought it to over 50 parts, each consisting of at least 4-8 pieces of material). These parts not only had to be constructed, but also painted, utilizing the same color scheme from our previous joints. The model was constructed over the course of multiple weeks, but unfortunately I was still unable to finish it in its entirety, although enough of it was completed to properly illustrate the concepts behind it.

The final sit model, completely assembled. The grey turned out to be much darker than I had originally planned.

The final sit model, completely assembled. The grey turned out to be much darker than I had originally planned.

The final site model, showcasing the modular nature of the base or ground, which could be deconstructed into three parts for easy transport.

The final site model, showcasing the modular nature of the base or ground, which could be deconstructed into three parts for easy transport.

One of the three main parts of the site model, with all the components taken apart and laid out separately.

One of the three main parts of the site model, with some of the components taken apart and laid out separately to show the individual parts.

Final Site Model – Stage 2

The second stage of our final project was the creation of two sections and one plan of our model as drawings, to allow for proper reading of the conceptualized model. Using color and various line types/weights, the images were some of the more technical ones we had produced during the semester.

A plan of the model. Black represents solid that is being cut through, while all other colors are the actual surfaces as they would be colored. I attempted to use the grid in the background to differentiate between a white surface and the background or "void" in the model (traditionally displayed as white).

A plan of the model. Black represents solid that is being cut through, while all other colors are the actual surfaces as they would be colored. I attempted to use the grid in the background to differentiate between a white surface and the background or “void” in the model (traditionally displayed as white).

A section cut through the foundation of the model. Black represents solid, while white is surface. The various notches/voids where the pieces would site and/or create can be seen throughout the section.

A section cut through the foundation of the model. Black represents solid, while white is surface. The various notches/voids where the pieces would sit and/or create can be seen throughout the section.

This section is more of a shot looking down at the model - no part of the model is actually cut in section. All colors (including black) are representative of the actual colored surface.

This section is more of a shot looking down at the model – no part of the model is actually cut in section. All colors (including black) are representative of the actual colored surface.

Final Site Model – Stage 1

Following the exploration of the previous joints and drawings, we were tasked with our final project of the semester – to create a 16″ x 42″ model of our Martian site as constructed from our previous explorations. This “site” model was to be created based on our previous joints/concepts we had developed, using repetition/mirroring/scaling to take our pattern and extend it for the full 42 inches. Like our previous joints, this model would consist of parts that could be removed and put back together, and would also continue our color scheme. The idea was to take the patterns/spaces we had already developed and extend them to the Martian landscape, exploring how a society might move through and exist within the space (or lack of space) created. Thus, the creation was not a “building” per se, but rather an exploration of form and space as it might pertain to its inhabitants.

Using various sketches I created a design based on the two joints I had constructed out of basswood (and subsequently painted), allowing the two joints to alternate, as well as mirror and rotate, throughout the design. Various pieces of the original joints were merged or skewed to allow for the new model to flow and become one part out of many.

From these sketches, we were tasked to take our model and construct it in Rhino, to allow for proper planning of its construction. Below you can see the model during its conception within Rhino, as well as multiple renderings created of the concept (using plugins within the Rhino interface).

A screenshot of the Rhino interface, with the model in its various parts. The model had been copied many times to perform various operations, such as sections and plans, as well as separated into it's individual pieces in an attempt to organize the parts for construction. The colors represent parts that lie within different "layers" within Rhino and do not represent the final coloring of the model.

A screenshot of the Rhino interface, with the model in its various parts. The model had been copied many times to perform various operations, such as sections and plans, as well as separated into its individual pieces in an attempt to organize the parts for construction. The colors represent parts that lie within different “layers” within Rhino and do not represent the final coloring of the model.

A rendering of the conceptualized site model.

A rendering of the conceptualized site model.

Site Plan Rendering 2

A rendering from a different angle, to show where solids and voids may lie.

The model was required to incorporate some form of slope into the design – I attempted to accentuate this via a “growth” of the pattern as it traversed the model (scaling). One of the largest difficulties I faced was finding a way for the two different joints (one being very angular and horizontal, the other linear and vertical) to work and flow together. Thus, certain portions of the model were also extended or removed in various directions to attempt to accentuate the conflicting horizontal and vertical as well as angular and linear tendencies of the model. I feel that this also is representative of a society, which may consist of many differing and perhaps conflicting parts or ideas, but yet they still all come together to allow for a functioning whole.

The model was conceived to sit on a “base” or ground, from which the various parts would arise. This ground would become the locking mechanism for the parts. A secondary locking system consisted of various “mask pieces” (a continuation of the mask from previous models) which would sit over portions of the model. These masks became the second concept behind the model – certain parts of a society are readily visible to an outside observer, but other portions are hidden, and certain parts must be removed in order to see these inner workings.

Drawing – Phase Two

After our first set of digital drawings were created, we were tasked with the creation of two more digital drawings at 48″ x 18″, one for a pair of our four larger joints. These drawings also used out grids, mars landscape, and various views of our joint – however, we were asked to imagine that the views of our joints were flat and and had been super-imposed onto our existing grids, creating a new grid. We then imagined this new grid to be extruded, and taking four sections of this imaginary extrusion, created our new digital images. These images also included a variation of the same color scheme that we had used on our joints.

One of the two 48" x 18" digital images, showing 4 sections of the imaginary extrusion of the new grid.

One of the two 48″ x 18″ digital images, showing 4 sections of the imaginary extrusion of the new grid.

The second of the two new digital images. This one turned out a bit more precise than the first.

The second of the two new digital images. This one turned out a bit more precise than the first.

Expanded Joints: 3x3x9

After the construction of our first two 3″ x 3″ joints, we were instructed to isolate the two most interesting spaces or moments of our joints, and using rotation, reflection, scaling, and shearing, expand them into four 3″ x 3″ x 9″ joints. These joints, like the first, had to consist of various pieces that could be taken apart but when put together would hold together to form a solid construct. Unfortunately, due to a combination of design, material, and craftsmanship, two of my four larger joints do not stay together terribly well on their own.

These joints, like the first, were first constructed using task board, and then were reconstructed using basswood. This time, for our wood constructions, we introduced a color scheme – half of the class became the “purple group”, while the other was the “red group”. Each group used their color scheme for the joints and for a couple more digital drawings which I will post later. As part of the red group, I was allowed to use four colors and/or tones: black, white, grey, and a fairly standard red.

Due to time constraints, only two of the four joints were made in wood (and subsequently painted).

I have attached images of my four joints. Each image includes two shots of the joint: one with all the parts together, and one with the parts exploded.

–August

Time for Some Digital Drawing

After the creation of our initial two 3″ square joints, we were asked to choose the two most interesting moments or “spaces”, and then expand them into 4 3″ x 3″ x 9″ joints, utilizing rotation, reflection, scaling, and shearing (I’ll post photos of those once I find my camera). We also learned how to render them in 3D using Rhinoceros 5, and having taken multiple “views” of these renderings (sections, plans, and/or axiometric views), construct two digital images (two joints per image) that incorporated our mars landscape*, two grids, and the views of our joints. These images were constructed using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop (with the joint views coming from the 3D renderings in Rhino), and have gone through many iterations. I’m not completely satisfied with them, as I have discovered that I approached them with a more artistic lens, sometimes forgetting that architectural drawings such as these also have to objectively portray information about their subject matter. That has by far been my biggest struggle – drawing with both the “subjective” artistic and “objective” engineering viewpoints simultaneously.

The first of the two 36″x36″ digital drawings, incorporating our two grids, multiple views of two of our four larger joints, and the martian landscape we had chosen earlier.

The second of the two 36″x36″ digital drawings. This one has a more vertical layout to accentuate the vertical nature of my 4th joint.

*The overall goal of our project is that we will be creating some sort of space/structure that deals with the terraformation of the martian landscape. This is not strictly a “building” as we are not focused on the practicality of the space but rather how a society might move through and interact with the space, as well as it’s interactions with the various parts it consists of and the landscape it is situated on. At the beginning of the semester we chose a particular mars image which will eventually become the site for our final structure.

My chosen Mars landscape.