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Design Portfolio David McDonald

About Me David McDonald +(61 4) 3104 7689

Since as far back as I can remember I have always been making things. I was obsessed with lego, drawing and cardboard as many children were, and no remote control car could escape my ‘upgrades’. From these early days, I developed a passion for design. This passion has manifested itself in a variety of different ways. I am able to create purely conceptual projects, while also having a very strong sense of the everyday practicalities and function of buildings. My adult life, informed by cosmopolitan architecture around the world, has evolved and inspired my ideas about the urban spaces in which people enjoy their lives. As a designer, I am self-motivated, resourceful, enthusiastic and hard-working. This portfolio encompasses a range of diverse projects at varying scales, from an 18,000m2 Architectural School to a backyard wood-ďŹ red oven. Each project demonstrates my creative and technical abilities as well as my versatility as a designer. I strive always to be open-minded and experimental, because this approach has allowed me to gain the maximum learning potential from my student life.

Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning The University of Melbourne


To design a new school of architecture, I considered the way in which students learn by drawing from my own experiences. As students, we need an environment which promotes the exchange of ideas not only through traditional tutorial based learning, but also through the discussions that are had between classes, in the lift, or sitting out on the fire escape. This buildings fourth level which sits equally between staff and student facilities breaks out to a large rooftop garden, where students can socialise, make models and be messy. A circulation ramp winds from ground floor up to this garden and connects a network of interaction points along the way, which create numerous opportunities for these encounters. A major new courtyard on ground floor activated by the Elizabeth Murdoch heritage building opposite presents a new entry to Swanston st and attracts passers by with a cafe and gallery. This faculty aims to be a centre for communication, a cultural forum and a catalyst for creative thinking.



Quick & Dirty Carpark SPACE Moray Street Car park is located underneath the Kings Way overpass in South Bank Melbourne. This project was to take advantage of under-used space using cheap or temporary architecture. My proposal is for an continuous elevated studio space which operates above the existing carpark. The design is ‘quick and dirty’ because it uses prefabricated steel frames which are flat packed and assembled on site with recyclable plywood as cladding. The car parking beneath remains fully operational and business remains uninterrupted. The continuous extrusion above the car parking bays results in repeated framing and components that can be mass produced.

Student Centre University of Canberra

The brief for this student centre located on the University of Canberra Campus required an iconic and vibrant student Hub which contained a gallery, student administration and lecture facilities. The Student Hub has been positioned at the crossroads of two new boulevards identiďŹ ed in the 2008 campus masterplan.

Gallery Student Services Lecture Hall

This project was an exercise in diagramming, where the concpet of a ďŹ gure 8 loop, which represented continuity was explored. This notion of continuity was applied to the structure and building circulation. A ribbon of Coreten steel wraps from the outside to the inside accross the length of the student centre.

Lakeside Residence Canberra 4 6 2

3 This artists residence is situated in Yarralumla on the edge of Lake Burley GrifďŹ n in Canberra. The form of the house consists of two rectangular volumes stacked at right angles; with the lower for sleeping and the top cantilevered block for living. These volumes are wrapped in a folding structure which responds to sunlight and views by revealing openings or extending to form shade and shelter. 1 The envelope of the building becomes a programmable canvas that responds to the site in a sensitive and direct manner.

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Living Bedroom Bathroom Courtyard Balcony Entry Stair



Wood-Fired Oven Whilst travelling through Turkey in 2008 I met Aydin from Bergama, who’s pride and joy was his 200 year old restored Ottoman house. In the courtyard stood the original brick dome wood-ďŹ red oven. These travels inspired me to create my own oven. The oven, excluding the dome, is made entirely from recycled building materials which include, bricks, Hebel, Tiles and the Flue. The outer mosaics are inspired by Gaudi.

Tower Canberra

This four level tower contains a studio, gallery and residence. The dynamic form has been designed to achieve optimum solar control for the gallery levels through indirect lighting .The uid form of the precast concrete promotes the circulation of fresh air, through a passive exchange system.

First Floor

Second Floor

Third Floor

Concrete Station Platform Plaster Cast Model This group project involved the design and construction of a 1:20 Scale model of a train station platform shelter. We constructed a 2 part mould, to lighten what would otherwise be solid, and also devised a connection method.

Skills AutoCAD 2009 Revit 2008 Google Sketchup 7 Rhino 4.0 3D Studio Max 9 Adobe Photoshop CS4 Adobe Illustrator CS4 Adobe InDesign CS4 Adobe Flash CS4 Adobe Acrobat Pro 9 Microsoft OfďŹ ce Hand Drawing Model Building Screenprinting

+(61 4) 3104 7689

David McDonald's Design Portfolio  
David McDonald's Design Portfolio  

2010 Design Portfolio RMIT