himeji castle.jpg



Reprise 2 of 4

Dearest Studio Friends,


Remember how much we love exploring architecture at Studio? Remember all of the shapes and forms of nature surrounding us? At Studio we often found these elements throughout the garden and in Prospect Park: pine cones, bark, sticks, branches, rocks, leaves, paths, beds of water, animals and insects, and the clouds and skyline just beyond the tips of the treetops. Let’s remember the many structures on Earth, and the motion and music of our world that inspires us to imagine and create as architects. At Studio we often played music, moved and danced, built our designs from various pieces, and used objects of all types

to display our ideas for architectural buildings. 


press to zoom

press to zoom

press to zoom

press to zoom

The wonderful and infinite world of architecture consists of buildings, structures, and environments in which people live, play, and work. 


Architecture is designing buildings for people to

live, play, and work in.

Panoramic view of Rainbow Mountain at Vi
Hands of unrecognisable architect drawin


3D - Designing with objects that have length, width, and height so that the you can feel, see, and hold different sides of the construction. With a 3D design you can walk around and see all sides of what you've built.  Block buildings are  3D designs!


Using different size and shapes of blocks, a 3D structure is created.








MEASURE – To use a tool to determine an object's size, most often in length, width, and height. 


She used the ruler to measure the length of table. 




ENHANCE – To make something stand out more, often in

color, stature, or feeling.

The mountain landscape was enhanced by the reflection of the rainbow's colors


Close-up Of A Person's Hand Protecting M





You've explored, researched, and created with shapes to fire your imagination to think infinitely and with great freedom. Having completed these activities, you can now use your inspiration to begin to brainstorm even more parts of  architectural design. 


Architects design with 2D floor plans and with computer systems. This planning requires both tools that you can hold in your hand and tools that you use through a computer program.

When architects create floor plans and blueprints, they use an assortment of different handheld tools throughout the process. When architects use computers to design, the computer programs already have the tools they need as a part of each computer program's software.


Either way, architects know how to use their tools, whether handheld and on paper, or with a computer, to best produce the ideas that they have for their building. They have to understand how to use the tools, numbers, math, and measurements to create building plans and blueprints that provide the best information so that the construction process is successful.   

Blueprint Architect Construction Project
Young African Businesswoman Drawing Blue



FLOORPLAN – A 2D map and plan of a house, building, or other structure  that people use to live, work, or play in.

BLUEPRINT – An architectural plan for a building made up of specific measurements and symbols to guide the building's construction. 

Throughout your designing and planning, while you may use some of these tools for fun and inspiration, your primary tools will be something to draw on, something to draw with, and your imagination! 


Some of the main tool architects use are: 

          Computer    Compass     Protractor      Ruler               Architect Scales    Triangles     Tape Measure     T-square   

French Curve  Set     Circles Template    Pencils  & Pens 



press to zoom

press to zoom

press to zoom

press to zoom



The main tools in architecture with which we are most familiar are the tape measure and ruler. Through these tools we can measure all types of objects and spaces in our environment.


Find a ruler or tape measure and use it to measure different doorways, halls, and windows in your environment. Look at the numbers on the ruler. You start measuring by placing the start of the ruler or tape measure (before the number 1) at the first end of what you are measuring. Then you look at the number at the second end of the object you are measuring. That number tells you how long, wide, or deep it is. Also look to see if your ruler shows inches and/or centimeters, or another form of measurement.


Then say the measurement aloud. 

"The width of this window seat is 42 inches long!" (You will know this by, for example, seeing the 42" line where the ruler or tape measure stops at the end of the window. )


Keep measuring things all around you!

You can keep a list of how long, wide, and deep the objects you measure are. 


Rulers and tools that assist architects in measuring and scaling their plans are a big part of architectural designs. 




There are numerous objects in your home environment and out in nature to build with:

Pillows, legos, toys, blocks, recyclables, clay, Play-Doh, rocks, sticks, pine cones, acorns, leaves, branches.

You can even build with a combination of materials and objects, as well as explore found objects

to contribute to the make up of your building. 


Think about it:

If the building structure you are imagining and designing

 could be made up of any kind of nature at all, what would it be made of?

Maybe it would be made of a combination of a few of the following: 


Find your materials and get ready to build by:

  • Organizing and compiling the specific materials you will use to create your building. 

  • Gathering additional materials that will help you add different architectural elements to your building.

  • Deciding on different ways that your building pieces will stay together, such as:

glue, string, tape, staples, balance, and/or gravity. 

Remember, you can use any combination of your building pieces and materials to construct your building.




As you look back at your drawing and collage of 2D shapes from Week One of Architecture, you can think about what part of your design inspired you most. Then, what parts of your 2D design can you now begin to lay out as a blueprint and floor plan for your building?


Have fun with your blueprint! Think about where you would like the different rooms of your building to be, how many doors, windows, walls, and hallways you'd like to draw to represent the way your building looks inside.  Count how many different parts of the inside of your building you included in your blueprint.

Use colorful markers and crayons to create those blueprint lines!


Keeping preparing to create your building: 

  • Close your eyes and imagine how you will put the different parts and pieces of the building together to form a whole structure. 

  •  It is okay to just sit and think and imagine about the building growing. 

  • Find a safe place--a table top, or a place to the side of the busy activity of your family--where the building can sit for as long as you are creating it over a period of time. 

It may take a few hours, a few days, or a few months to complete your building. However long it takes, be intentional in your design and enjoy the creative process. Enjoy this span of erecting your building!


Intentional  - To give a certain activity or event specific meaning and purpose through focused thought and planning.

Her design for the building was very intentional in that she created many windows and open areas, knowing that the people wanted as much space and light as possible to work in. 

Occasionally, stop, close your eyes, and imagine the step by steps parts that will come in your building process. This is how we are intentional. We take the time to give something strong and significant meaning and purpose.  



With so much architectural research, exploration, creating, and adventure at play, it is time to build! 

Now that you've explored shapes, tools, measurements, elements of architecture, materials, and blueprints, you can take your 2D planning and ideas and build out into a 3D structure.  Not only does your building get to expand, your hands and mind also stretch to take all that you've imagined to another level. 


As you begin to construct your 3D building, how can you build and include the ideas of your shape collage, the materials that inspire you the most, parts of your blueprint, as well as so many of the pieces that you've imagined? As you build, remember the different elements of architecture that you know can enhance the completion of your structure.  

As you build include these elements:












Continue to listen to the Suites!

This week we will continue to spotlight the musical composition of 17th century composer, Johan Sebastian Bach,  The Cello Suites. Over the centuries these pieces have been played by many famous cellists, including Pablo Casals and Yo-Yo Mah.  Yet in our musical explorations this week we will share the performance of cellist Jacqueline Du Pre's rendition of the Cello Suites. Each Suite has its own personality, its own mood, tempo, cadence and story. We can each interpret how the Suites make us feel and how they inspire us in our thinking and imagining. Architectural thinking and music enhance each other's meaning and power. When we draw, music inspires that motion and the visualizations that come to us. When we build, musical expression is enhanced: we can think of the music as being demonstrated in the design and shape of the building.

Architecture is music manifest.     



Jaqueline Du Pre - Cello Suites



This week Angus will continue to explore architecture through his music as he demonstrates how music builds in scales of different keys.  Listen to the different scales the Angus plays and how they feel and sound different based on what key they are played in. Much like architecture, buildings might feel different based on the way they are constructed or the materials they are made of, how tall they are, or what environment they are in. For each key scale that Angus plays, and for each key that he plays in, we can imagine what kind of a building we might be inside of or be looking at, and where it is.  

How to Play Architecture Two Angus Davidson
00:00 / 16:33



Buildings stand in all kinds of different shapes and forms. 

Think of the ways that you can hold and move your body as different types of buildings.

If you are going to be a tall skyscraper, stand as tall and sturdy as possible in your body and reach to the highest point that you can in the sky. Come back down to the ground and slowly grow and stretch up to the sky three times. 

If you are a small and short hut house, round your back and firmly touch your arms to the earth. Relax your body as much as possible and feel solid and balanced in the way that you land. Resume standing normally and then, again, round over and touch the earth.  

As a building you are also met with sunlight throughout the day. Stand tall to allow the sunlight to touch your frame and enter inside of your building. Use your arms and hands to allow for sun to touch the top of your structure, the sides, and the very bottom. Stretch your arms and hands and fingers at different angles and around your whole building structure. This is where the sunlight is coming in!

As a building you are also met with the wind moving around you and bouncing off of your structure throughout the day.  Stand tall to allow the wind to move over your frame and to bounce off the outside of your building. As the wind meets your structure, allow your arms to move up and down, and reach, bend, and sway from side to side. You are so strong and sturdy as you are met by elements of nature! 



As you think of different types of buildings you can:

Breathe in as you imagine yourself in a big grass prairie inside of a cozy and round grass hut. As you breathe out you can imagine all of the space and nature and the big sky that surrounds your small, nestling structure. 

Breathe in as you imagine yourself at the top of a large skyscraper, looking out at an entire city of buildings that take up all of the space that you can see in the distance. As you breathe out, you can also see a river moving up the entire stretch of the city to the side of the skyline. 

Breathe in as you imagine a house made of snow and ice, an igloo. As you breathe out, you can imagine sitting inside of the igloo, in front of a fire, feeling warm and protected under a bright evening sky of stars.





Remember, thinking architecturally is the perfect way to exercise your imagination. Thinking architecturally is not just for the purpose of designing and building homes. Thinking architecturally helps you to strengthen all of your imaginative powers! 


To think like an architect again:


· Remember to believe in your imagination! Believe that an idea in your mind's eye can be created and become a real structure for people to use. 

  • Ask people what kind of structures they dream of living, working, and playing within.

  • Know how to make a building offer a certain feeling inside and outside of its structure. 

  • Understand elements of nature--wood, steel, stone, brick, concrete, glass, snow, and mud--that can be used as architectural material. 

  • Understand numbers, practice math, and pursue the studies of science and technology. 

  • Pursue tools as a way to create shapes and build ideas visually. 

  • Understand colors as a way to add to the feeling to an architectural creation. 

  • Know that human beings love sunlight, so create to bring daylight into building structures

Draw and decorate your ideas and

imaginings as much as possible!