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Justin M. Risher

Design Philosophy Creativity is a powerful characteristic, a stimulating ability evolving from our own originalities and perspectives. Creativity gives me the ability to fuse the surreal to reality, generating my own unique designs. This self expression helps define me as a unique individual. Having a fascination for how things are interlocked has furthered my outlook on life. This ranges from a personal computer to the way a building is constructed. Being focused with every detail as I design is one way I illustrate my ideas successfully. A fascination with the details on how things are put together has followed me throughout my life. It is a passion for detailed architecture that has kept my ambitions soaring. Attending three universities has given me various perspectives that demonstrate an appreciation for the built environment. Vincennes University provided me with the ground work for construction documents. Southern Illinois University provided myself with the ability to layer more knowledge of construction details and artwork. After my undergraduate work, I decided to attend Savannah College of Art and Design where I have received a balance of creativity and technical drawings. Architecture is a compelling and dominant force that has given me a sense of direction. It is my personal belief that architecture helps lay the groundwork for success and accomplishment in the future.

Table of Contents Graduate Undergraduate Professional Artistic


Celebrating Nature & Urbanity

Savannah College of Art and Design Graduate Architecture Studio I - Arch 717 Professor Arpad Ronaszegi - Fall 2011 Justin Risher & Casey Smith

Project Statement: Located on the west side of Charleston, South Carolina, the proposed site is a barrier between two economic sites. The connection between the urban fabric and nature has also been lost. Our proposal will re establish that connection as well as the connection between the Medical University of South Carolina and the proposed Horizon development project.

Natural Pump Filters

MUSC has collaborated with the City of Charleston to develop the Horizon District as a vibrant, urban mixed-use community with retail, residential, and dedicated research office space. The land between the MUSC and the Horizon District is currently not used to it’s full potential. Our scheme will bring the nature back to the area and provide a resting ground for citizens and visitors. Master Plan

Pedestrian Boulevard

“Connection of Hydrology, Nature, & the Urban Fabric�

Natural Pump Filters Section

Medical University of South Carolina Retention Pond

Imagination, Florida

Savannah College of Art and Design Architecture Studio V - Arch 405 Professor Daniel Brown - Winter 2011 Justin Risher & Andrea Lucas

Project Statement: Working closely with a large media company, we as designers and visionaries were asked to create a sustainable urban community in the state of Florida. The overall concept for the design was to include an institution that is walkable and desired. Using Savannah, GA as a base, we as a team created a series of parks that would create a pleasant journey from one end of the site to the other. These institution buildings were then connected with major arterial streets and a network of parks.

Savannah, GA overlay on site

Savannah, GA is well known for its walkability and green character. Its green square sprinkled throughout the district and short distances encourage the community to be outdoors and out of their vehicles.

Master Plan

“Characterized by the activities that take place in these Zones�

Multimedia Square

Culinary Square Details

By: Andrea Lucas

Illustration Square

By: Andrea Lucas

Culinary Institute

Imagination, Florida

Savannah College of Art and Design Architecture Studio V - Arch 405 Professor Daniel Brown - Winter 2011 Justin Risher & Erin Dora

Project Statement: Working closely with a large media company, we as designers and visionaries were asked to create a Culinary Institute for the Institution of Imagination, FL. Imagination, FL was created with urban design students in studio v. The concept of the culinary institute is “Field to Fork� with a funnel of Knowledge.

Site Location

First Floor

Second Floor

Third Floor

Fourth Floor

Culinary Entrance

With the classrooms above, students will work their way from the “field” to the “fork” which is where the restaurant is located. The funnel is clearly illustrated in plan and perspective. The restaurant was visioned as exposed, as to where the food is exposed along with building materials on

Restaurant “Expose” Entrance

the interior.

3d Wall Section

3d Building Section

Restaurant “Expose”

By: Erin Dora

Atlanta Urban Music Cooperative

Savannah College of Art and Design Architecture Studio IV - Arch 404 Professor Julie Granacher - Fall 2010

Project Statement: The neighborhood, with its ties to the civil rights movement, has one of the few strong small scale urban contexts still remaining in the sprawling metropolis of Atlanta. The building is situated on the same site as the historical Herndon Building which housed the first African American radio broadcast station. In 2008, a horrific tornado went right through the heart of the site and destroyed the remains of the old Herndon building. Presently, a portion of the building remains standing and will be used as historical context within the site. With the historical Herndon building gone, many spectators view the site as very empty and TRANSPARENT. When the neighborhood and guests are added to the site, it becomes added upon and becomes TRANSLUCENT. When a structure is added, along with spectators and members of the neighborhood, it becomes more dense and very OPAQUE. When building components are

First Floor Plan

added into the concept, it all sums to be a dynamic use of steel, glass, and solid walls. Steel beams and columns are used to create pockets of TRANSPARENT windows. Frosted and tinted glass create TRANSLUCENT layers within the building’s interior and exterior. Brick, concrete, and steel stud walls trap creative sounds and minds within by building OPAQUE walls.

Curtain Wall Connections

Structural Diagram

South Entrance

Front Perspective

The project will incorporate a musical tradition of the area into a new facility for the Atlanta Urban Music Cooperative, a non-profit for training youth in music performance, recording, sound engineering, and broadcasting. The cooperative will obtain funding the market-appropriate recording facilities drawing large names in urban music to the area for professional recording and mixing services.

Fourth Floor Balcony

3d Exploded Section


Savannah Train Station

Savannah College of Art and Design Architecture Studio III - Arch 303 Professor Timothy Woods - Spring 2010

Project Statement: The central concept of this train station is a TRANSITIONAL structure from “Old Savannah” to the”New Savannah” or “River Landings.” The main station’s style will consist of the architectural style from the “Old Savannah.” The transitional piece will be a modern structure that will BRIDGE the gap between “Old Savannah” and the “New Savannah.” This transition structure will also transform from an older architecture to a new architecture with a TWIST and bend.


Site Plan

Train Platforms

Diffusing light during the day and creating a warmth, as guests are greeted from the East during the evening, the translucent glass butterfly roofs create a gradual climb that is aesthetically pleasing and that is functional. This can be seen in the rendering above and to the right.

Main Building


Stair Case

Train Platforms

A good train station is a place where patrons and guests are able to safely travel to and from their next destinations as efficiently as possible. Also, creating a train station that is environmentally friendly and sustainable will also make a good place for people to gather for more than just travel.

Structural Development

Horizontal Axonometric

A Museum in Lacoste, France

Savannah College of Art and Design Architecture Studio II - Arch 302 Professor Christine Wacta - Winter 2010

Project Statement: Sensory EXPERIENCE is unstable and alien to natural PERCEPTION, which we achieve with our whole body all at one, and which opens on a world of INTERACTING senses. The intent of this project, in Lacoste, France is to create an unique experience in which the guests perceive the science museum and rock quarry in different ways.


Circulation Tower

Architecture is essentially an extension of nature into the man-made realm, providing the ground for perception and the horizon of experiencing and understanding the world.

Longitudinal Building Section

Site Plan

Main Lobby

The museum was broken into different parts of a sensory experience. These experiences and areas of the museum are of past experiences, present experiences, and future experiences.

Outdoor Balconies

Exterior Skin Study

Horizontal Axonometric


Southern Illinois University Undergraduate Architecture Studio - Arc 452 Professor Robert Swenson - Spring 2009

Gaia House

Project Statement: The UNIFYING concept of the building is a direct relation between the models and ideas of Buckminster Fuller and the worship spaces of the existing site and of the new building. The proposal shows a direct path in which guests will enter the building fascinated and inquisitive about the GEODESIC DOME on the south side of the site. The intersection of Highway 51 and Grand avenue is very popular and this geodesic dome will inspire guests to visit the Gaia house. A LEED PLATINUM rating was expressed as a need and was achieved using this design.

Site Plan

Worship Dome at Night

Main Entrance

Cafeteria at Night

Tensegrity Model

The direct path that the building creates, will also strive visitors to experience the entire building and journey towards the center of the building. This is where a modern tensegrity model of Buckminster Fuller will be on display. This model is pictured above.

Typical Bedroom

Downtown Cairo, IL

Southern Illinois University Undergraduate Architecture Studio - Arc 451 Professor Robert Swenson - Fall 2008

Project Statement: There are several components of Cairo, IL that should be addressed for redevelopment. One important aspect is the Ohio river. The water’s edge holds great potential to be a tourist attraction. The riverfront should be welcoming and inviting for people for all ages. Along this newly developed riverfront will be a proposed hotel either a Drury Inn, a Marriott, or a Hilton. Another proposal is a civil rights museum to educate the city of Cairo, IL about their history. This civil rights museum will educate the public about slavery and the underground railroad.

Cairo, Illinois

Located in the southernmost city in the United States state of Illinois, lies a small city of Cairo. It is a dying historic town of the midwest.

Cairo Inn - New Hotel

Ohio Street - Riverwalk

Cairo, Illinois - New Riverfront

“Entertainment and Education” Underground Railroad Museum

Underground Railroad Memorial

Carbondale Aquatic Center

Southern Illinois University Undergraduate Architecture Studio - Arc 351 Professor Walter Wendler - Fall 2007

Project Statement: A community pool should use its natural resources wisely and efficiently. Solar panels will collect energy and heat the pool late spring and early autumn, maximizing the pool “season”. The orientation of the building will maximize the use of southern winds and will harness the pool from freezing northern winds. Overall, this community pool will be an icon for the future community pools across the nation.

“An Aquatic Center for Extended Seasons”

Floor Plan

Southwest Perspective

Pool Entrance

By building a large structure that carries many solar panels, the pool is heated by the solar rays and the solar panels collect energy to heat the pool in early autumn or late spring, extending the open season of the pool.

Main Lobby

Wall Sections

3d Building Section

New Art School

Vincennes University Undergraduate Architecture Studio - Arc 282 Professor Laura Swan - Spring 2007

Project Statement: The art department, of Vincennes University, is in need of a new building located on campus to house all and only the visual arts. These visual arts include drawing, painting, sculpting, woodworking, printing, photography, and design. One of the major problems of the art department is that they are located in the Humanities building along with other majors. The art department is in need of a building in order to showcase art work and provide art majors and art classes a building of their own.

Second Floor Plan

The proposal is to build a new building with class rooms, art laboratories, two art galleries, lecture halls, and offices for professors. Incorporating the surrounding context is the premise for the design. Traditional functions, yet contemporary aesthetics and an industrial feel are thoughts for this design. I, personally, incorporated a natural flow and a curve to the exterior and interior of the new art First Floor Plan


“A Creative Education�

Student Entrance

Main Entrance

Main Entrance

Main Entrance

Art Laboratories - Rear Entrance

Construction Documents

Vincennes University Undergraduate Architecture Studio - Arc 291 Professor Michael Houtsch- Spring 2007

Class Intent: This course provided a realistic opportunity to use AutoCAD software and synthesize prior knowledge and experience, to create a set of bid documents for a steel and/or concrete/masonry commercial structure. Conducted over a 16 week semester, a team of four students worked on various construction documents for a commercial structure. Having the role of Project Manager, I was given the responsibility of communicating roles and decisions to the team. I had the responsibility of red lining the drawings with the professors supervision.


ADG/ Architecture & Design Group

Tim Raibley, AIA & Jason Wright, AIA 512 N Market St. Mount Carmel, IL 62863

During the summer of 2007, I worked for a small architectural firm located in Mount Carmel, Illinois. I worked on red marked drawings, shop drawings, blueprints, and several small projects that included schools, retail, and residential projects. The drawing below depicts an addition for Christ’s Church located in Effingham, IL. I also helped design elevations for a Sherwin Williams building located in Iowa City.


“A Dog’s Dream” Design Intent: Using ink and presentation paper, this image was created by a technique known as cross hatching. Using one of my own photographs, this composition was created through a series of sketches and transfers and then shaded with the ink cross hatching pattern. The overall composition can be seen below with enlarged images to the right. This work of art traveled to Washington D.C. for a national competition in 2005, as well as a local competition and won third place overall.

“Melted Hearts� Design Intent: A blank canvas is just that, blank. By adding colors and creativity, a beautiful combination of materials can be transformed into a stunning piece of art. Using wax crayons and a stretched white canvas this two foot by four foot artwork was created. Hot glue, 250 crayola wax crayons, and a heat gun was used to create the composition below. This artwork was then given to a significant other for a gift.

“Whiskey over Canvas� Design Intent: An image, mod podge, tissue paper, an ink jet printer, and a stretched canvas can create the perfect addition to any room. Printing an image on tissue paper and then using mod podge to seal the image to the canvas, created this piece of art. The imperfections of the stretched canvas easily shows through the image and adds a frame for any photograph.

Architectural Portfolio  

Creativity is a powerful characteristic, a stimulating ability evolving from our own originalities and perspectives. Creativity gives me the...

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