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Module 2 Design Kevin Zhang - 639878


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PANELLING PRECEDENTS LEFT: Example of the filtered lighting effect I chose this precedent as I thought the filter lighting effects would project aesthetic shadows as seen in the photo. However, some speculation emerged on whether the filtered lighting would go together on a curved surface like the lantern, as the photo only shows a flat surface.

RIGHT: Tunnel with diamond panelling. I liked the increasing panel size which diverged from either end of the tunnel. I also enjoyed the spiralling arrangement of the diamond panels. LEFT: Box extrusion panelling on building

I quite liked the stepping pattern of the box extrusions. This could be applied to my lantern, where the boxes to could be seen as stepping upwards in the spiral. The boxed extrusions would also provide an interesting lighting effect.

RIGHT: Triangular panelling on a building surface. I chose this precedent mainly because of how well the triangular pattern panelling fit with the curved surface of the building. As my lantern is curved, this type of panelling would compliment the curves surface well.

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TRACING PROFILE CURVES Orthographics views of the model were taken and imported into Rhino. These were then scaled to the appropriate size. Because my form was very sturctured and very naturally rounded, I opted to go with the third contouring method to draw my form in Rhino. Luckily, this was the correct method of contouring as the overall form, as shown below, was successfully implemented into Rhino. The very structured curving of the form was accurately reproduced, which only the third contouring method could achieve.

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BASIC DIGITISED MODEL LEFT: Using the loft tool, a rounded

3D surface was created which roughly resembled my desired form. However, it was found that the rounded 3D surface was very choppy, very rough and not that rounded at all. This was a result of the oversimplification of the model. To overcome this problem, further detail was added to the model by crawing more contour lines and cross sectional curves in Rhino. This was a tedious process as it was not known exactly how many more cross section curves should be added before the desired form began to appear. In the end, the form was digitalised with the desired curvature.

Perpective View

Front/Side View

Top View

LEFT: Initially, it was intended for the form to have a spiralling as-

pect or feature to it, such as the one seen on the left. However, this would force the viewer to think of the spiral feature and base form as two separate entities, when the aim in reality was for the viewer to think of the lantern as one whole object. It was then considered to subract the spiral feature from the base form, which would create a spirally cut in the form. However, this was suggested against as unrolling such a form would be very troublesome to panel as well as unroll.

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SPATIAL EFFECTS + RESPONSE TO READINGS Heatherwick considers everything form the fabric to the format, structure and the aesthetics. The spatial effects are created from focuses on one element and basing all consequent building and design decision on that one element. The one element could range from anything such as seeds to trees. The end product is a structure that has spatial effects inspired by that one element. Another way that Heatherwick creates spatial effects is the scaling of the pattern or base element. It is predominant in many of his projects that his team takes an element and enlarges it to make these patterns clearly visible. An example of the use of enlargement to create spatial effects would be the seed cathedral. The patterns and the complexity in texture of the seed would not normally by clearly visible in real life since seeds are very small. However, Heatherwick used the concept of seeds and enlarged the pattern and repetition of the seeds on which the final seed cathedral is based upon. The effects of positive space and negative space are generated from the enlargement of the optical hairs on the seed cathedral. Abstraction is about reducing the information of a model without compromising the integrity or construction of it. A perfect abstraction of a model does not contain as much information as possible, but as little as necessary to describe the properties of an object unambiguously. According to Scheurer, any extra information would be seen as redundant and be meaningless for its given purpose. Abstraction is a very streamlined approach. Reduction, in contrast to abstraction, is not about reducing the amount of information but rather about finding the optimal way to transport it, hence rewriting the description without altering the content. Reduction is about optimal descriptions of single geometric entities that save resources such as memory and disk space.

The Seed Cathedral by Thomas Heatherwick

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After learning the absolute basics of Panelling Tools, such as the grid point etc, I started to experiment on using various different panels and how this affected my form. At this stage, I had only experimented with the pre-set 2D panels that were already avaible in Panelling Tool. However, using different pre-sets, such as ‘Diamond‘, ‘Box‘ and others, dramatically changed the shape, the aesthetics, the patterns and the lighting effects on the structure. I also experimented with using a grid which was more dense, where there were more grid points on the surface. This can be seen in the form second the right, where the surface is much more detailed and the panels were much smaller than the other structures. The problem with being to detailed is the complexity and the difficulty when trying to assemble the structure physically.Although the panelling effects derived from simple 2D panels were intriguing, none of them contained any holes or slits, which would prevent the structure from lighting effect. Therefore, more experimentation was needed.

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BELOW: Although the 2D After experimenting with the pre-set 2D panels, I began to experiment with a variet of pre-set as well as custom 3D panels, fin edge tools and custom 2D panels.

ABOVE: I found that many

of the custom 3D panels became extremely bulky and arbitrary, nothing like the base pattern that the panel was based on. The arbitrary nature meant that the structure would be a nightmare to cut out and assemble.

panelling is very stripped down and does not have the same complexity as the other panels that were experimented on, I could not help but marvel at the simplicity of the piece. The blocklike structure is still quite aesthetic although not as detailed as the rest.

LEFT: Creating a custom 2D panel

and using the fin edge tool to extrude the panel gave much more consistent and structured results. The repetition of the extruded circle was very aesthetic and I liked the idea that every circle provided structural support for another circle, similar to a system.

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BELOW: Social housing block by Ofis Architecutre. I particularly enjoyed the extruding block feature of the building. Considering the sleek, modern curves of today’s skyscrapers, the simple box extrusions as a panel are very simplistic. The block panelling gives more of a sense of home, without the business and work. It gives the sense of relaxation and belonging, and that the viewer is part of the environment that the panelling creates.

ABOVE: Speigal Kantine

What I found particularly aesthetic was the repetition of the circular panels on the roof of the speigal Katine. Since there are so many, it give the sense of ordered choas. In the office for example, the dense panels and the seemingly choatic sutructure give a sense of urgency and push people to do their work on the office. Also, the reflection on the light on the ground was very interesting to note and suggests what type of lighting effects can be achieved from this type of panelling.

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PROTOTYPE 1 Drawing from the precedents as well as the from my panelling experimentation in Rhino, I started to explore shapes and panels that would go well with my shape. The aim was to choose the panel that would bring a human dimension into my natural, free-forming shape. Therefore I based my first prototype on the block panel where simplicity took predence over complexity. The material used was ivory card, as the panels were cut using the card cutter. The only issue with this is that ivory card is relatively thick, which means it would block out most of the light of the lantern.

However, the thickness of ivory card did have its benefits in the gluring process, as hard surfaces were easy to glue together The prototyping for this model was relatively simple, as the model only consisted of 5 panels. The modelling process consisted of gluetogether each pentagonal panel to form an irregular shape which was relatively long. The end product was a very stylich, modern shape that was produced. However, the panelling style for this does not allow for much light to penetrate through, allowing only slit lighting effects, which was not in the original plans.

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PROTOTYPE 2 For the second prototype, I chose a completely different panelling patter to my first one. Convention would be to make my second prototype to be an improvement to my first. However, I found that this limits the possibilities, and also my first protoype would not work in practice with regards to the lighting. My second prototype was based on the extrusion of circles panel. Each cylinder was cut out and glued together to form the shape of this prototype. Initially, it was intended for the prototype to copy the exact shape of my original Rhino model shown on the right. However, the more I glued the pieces together, the less of that shape my prototype became.

I realised that any further attempt to force my prototype to looks like the original shape would be useless, so I began to experiment with what I could achieve, and I ended up with the shape shown below. Although it still retains some form from the original model, it is still vastly different. Again, ivory card was used in the prototype. Unlike the previous model, ivory card was not the best choice as the thickness of the material meant that the cylinders would frequently roll out, and had to be held in place until the glue dried. The lighting effects were relatively interesting, as seen in the bottom right corner. The extruded lighting effect achieved from the prototype was quite aesthetic and I might incorporate it into my final design.

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REFLECTION I found tha tmodule 2 proved to be very challenging, as really tested my time management skills. Not only was the module conducted in a very short timeframe but I also had to develop my models virtually on Rhino, as well as in reality. Having never used Rhino before, I was confused, and frustrated at time, when I could not use Rhino to my desire. In the end, however, I was amazed by how powerful the program is. I understand that there is an infinite amount of possibilities and structures that can be made on Rhino, but only if you know how to use the program. My inexperience limited me in a way, although I tried my hardest to transfer the knowledge in the online tutorials into my model and attended the tech sessions. Therefore, I faces some difficulty when digitising my model. Since computer programs are all planned out and every command that they take is determined by different options inserted into the program, it is imperative to understand what each option does and how each command works. I found that the prototyping phase went relatively smoothly. The use of the card cutter made things infinitely easier and less time consuming. The card cutter also made the prototypes more accurate than if I was to individually hand cut each piece. It was informative to experiment with different fold patterns, the width of the tabs and different types of glue. Ideally, I would have enjoyed to have more time to experiment both with the Rhino modelling and panelling, as well as producing more prototypes. The time constraints associated with the module did not allow me to further develop my model like I wished to, and also did not allow me to create another two prototypes that I hoped to make. Working together on my virtual and physical model simultaeneously was very challenging, but also very helpful as it pressured me into learning how to function in Rhino and how to use Rhino to create something real. Overall, this module was very important for my final outcome in determining the type of design elements I should use in my final submission. The model helped me visualise the panelling, lighting effects and design elements that would be best for my final model.

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REFERENCES/BIBLIOGRAPHY LECTURE 5,6 (2013) Virtual Environments. Sem 1, 2013 Speigel Kantine photo: Social Housing Block photo: Seed Catherdral photo: Lee, S. (2011). Patterns in Buildings. Retrieved from: http://sharifalee.blogspot. Triangular Panelling photo: Filtered Lighting Effects photo: Shadow Patterns photo: Scheurer, F. and Stehling, H. (2011): Lost in Parameter Space? IAD: Architectural Design, Wiley, 81 (4), July, pp. 7079 Heatherwick, T. (2011). Building the Seed Cathedral. [Video]. Retrieved from:

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Module 2 - Design  

Digitisation and panelling of lantern. Kevin Zhang - 629878 Virtual Environments - Semester 1/2013