Strike a Pose.

Strike a Pose.

Ok- I cheated a little on this one. I wasn’t able to get enough photos throughout the week, so I dug into my photo archives.

I LOVE the cover of this book. At first glance, it looks bold and minimalist, but there is a little more to unpack. This book is about racial inequality in America (it’s a great read, by the way) – so the shades play a huge part. The “Colony” symbolizing the minority is done in black, while the “Nation” is done in white. It becomes a literal black and white issue, with sharp clean lines. Interestingly, the two boxes aren’t even butted up against each other, but rather floating in perfect juxtaposition. Nor are they framed, implying while the box exists, there is no outward force confining it. It is self-confining. The typography is all caps and san serif contributing to the bold and minimalist aesthetic.

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This is one of the most beautiful modern design buildings I’ve ever stepped foot it. It’s the Harpa Opera House in Reykjavik, Iceland; and it’s an amazing example of repetition, unity, and balance. The building is steel, concrete and glass. The windows are different colors and shapes (in selective panels), but the overall repetition creates a honeycomb like pattern. Neither exterior nor the interior are symmetrical shapes, with multiple sloping stairwells on varying levels and jagged walls as the window boxes jut inward. One would expect all the sharp lines of fluctuating size, shape and placement would generate a rather anxious environment, but rather the individual pieces blend together to create a serene scene. Similar to looking at choppy waves on the oceans, when pulled back the waves preform a rhythmic dance. Harpa further embraces this rhythm with the use of both natural and artificial light and how it plays of the glass and steel at different angles. Brilliant.

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So this is just fun. Also in Iceland. Iceland is known for some rad street art murals, and this one does double duty. It’s on the side of a suit shop on the main shopping drag. It acts an advertising message while creatively functional – three ways to tie a tie. Of course we see repetition and rhythm too, but really, it’s just fun!

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This one was not a cheat! I did take this photo this week at work. This is the main glass partition separating the reception area from the lobby area. While color and minimalism are present, I specifically want to address the use of space, dominance and proportion in the design. First and foremost, the dominance and use of space. The color block is situated just above the halfway point of the floor to ceiling glass, allowing it to be seen from the front door with obstruction. And it dominates the space. There is no way to elaborate on this – it just dominates. It also takes advantage of the two-thirds rule of design we discussed during photography week. Easily illustrated by encompassing two of three glass panes. The vertical proportion is a little trickier on the eye as the color blocking starts at the halfway point, but stop short of the top. However if you focus solely on the top half, you can see the color block uses two-thirds of the top half, maintaining the two-thirds proportion.

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