WHSAD students’ pandemic struggles have been lightened at times due to our incredible partnerships. One such partner, Gensler architecture firm, has provided our students with opportunities to learn more about the fields of architecture and design through regular Google Meets arranged by Freshman Architecture teacher, Abraham Rodriguez. During these sessions, students have gained greater insights as to what a professional workplace looks like, innovative projects on which Gensler team members are currently working, and exciting directions in which the professions are headed. Students also appreciate the question and answer portion of these presentations as it allows students to get feedback regarding topics and interests of special interest.
In the following narratives, two of our sophomore students, Amelia Velez and Richard Hernandez, provide their thoughts on yesterday’s presentation. You may also view the full presentation below.
On Thursday March 25, there was a presentation hosted by the architecture company Gensler, featuring speakers Joseph Brennan, Erika Chan, and Zach Trattner. During this presentation the group focused on discussing digital design and different ways for people interested to access programs focused around the study. During the presentation they explained how the digital field had expanded greatly throughout the past few years and how digital technology has become more and more accessible. The presentation allowed listeners to realize how vast the field of digital study is and how common it has become in our daily lives.
Speakers went over different digital equipment/platforms available and the benefits of using that equipment/platform. They explained that the equipment allowed clients to get a better understanding of what they were investing in and what benefits there would be from the project or product. Additionally, designers, along with their clients, are able to correctly scale and create projects/products that replicate the desired environment/atmosphere. One way the speakers further explained this was by introducing the procedure of Visual Twins, which allows designers to create a perfect replica of their projects so, if there are any flaws, the replica can be used to pinpoint the root of the problem.
One point I personally thought was interesting and slightly worrying was how data collected from digital design was being used. The government creates digital networks or portals that are able to harvest and publicize information so it is accessible to the public. This can be done through digital devices such as Alexa/bluetooth devices under the same category, and equipment that uses sensors – so researchers can understand how people interact with space/the surrounding environment.
Overall the presentation was extremely informative and insightful as it allowed listeners to understand information they might not have known of or were aware of. Gensler speakers always find new, valuable information to share and explain on even if the different speakers are from the same field or department.
In today’s day and age everything revolves around technology, so it’s no surprise that as technology advances so will the way we go about designing. As shown by the wonderful people at Gensler, the way they go about designing and creating is revolutionary and outstanding. In Architecture and Design you use lots of software and these programs can range from Autocad to Revit to Rhino and so many others. Gensler, however, takes it to the next level and thinks outside the box. Instead of sticking to the status quo, they use other platforms like VR, animation, and 3-D printing to show what their designs will look like and how those designs will interact with the environment.
The people at Gensler are really talented and specialize in a variety of software, so it’s no wonder how they can pull stuff off like this. In case you’re wondering, Gensler is a global Design and Architecture firm that has a total 16 Diverse practice areas, which include Architecture, interior design, urban planning, and digital experience design. In today’s virtual presentation at WHSAD Joseph Brennan, Erika Chan and Zach Trattner showed us the many different things that the people at Gensler use when designing and working. When making a product for a client, they will usually want to see what the final product will look like and as in addition to showing them a 3-D rendering of the building, Gensler also uses VR for a more in-depth experience.
Gensler’s use of VR is something that almost no one does and their application of it is brilliant. I believe that the application of VR into architecture will become more common in the future to fully understand and explore a concept better. It will also be a better way of showing how the interior and exterior of a building will look like. Another tool that Gensler uses at its disposal is animation. Although animation and architecture don’t seem to go hand in hand, Gensler’s use of animation sure does show us the many ways that animation could and should be used in architecture. Instead of animating people in the territory, they use animation to show how the environment will react to the building and how lighting makes it look at certain points in time. 3-D modeling/printing is also another tool that they use at Gensler and it’s one that is more common, but it is important since it shows a miniaturized version of the model, and it gives people the chance to see it in real life to see if they like the design or if they want to go back and make some changes.
Another thing the Gensler team talked about was digital twin. Digital twin is bridging the physical world with the digital one through data, and it will change the way we go about doing things. With the help of digital twin, buildings will now have a system that can detect multiple aspects in multiple rooms such as when the lights are turned on when no one’s there and be able to turn it off or alert you it can also adjust the temperature and do many more things. Now that digital twin is able to accommodate buildings, it will make maintenance a bit easier.
Finally the last thing talked about were scanners and arduinos. Obviously, when making a building or environment you want to make sure that the people who are actually using it like it and don’t feel bothered. In order to make sure that people receive it well they use scanners programmed by arduinos to get feedback. By doing this they can detect people’s behavior and see if there’s a negative or positive response and the use of arduinos will make it easier to detect such responses.
Overall Gensler is great at utilizing the technology surrounding them and I’m sure that by doing this it will make designing a whole lot easier and with new advancements in technology everyday, I’m sure that they will change the way that we go about in the design and architecture fields.