February 22, 2010

final push

The pressure was on Monday morning. Kim, Randy’s wife, had to give up her current work space so Chris and I could get the new desk built and she was more than ready to get back to her desk. Randy’s deadline was five pm Monday night. He told us that the desk had to be completed because she was moving back to her spot later that night. With no time to waste, Chris and I finished cutting the desk top pieces and then installed them in their appropriate places. We finished the last coat of polyurethane just as Kim was bringing down her laptop to set up her new desk space. Looking back I can compare that final push to finish the desk back to school and trying to get the very last bit of a project finished before a crit. One of my goals from this internship is to break my prior studio habits of delaying the inevitable and adopt a routine that is more efficient.

The middle part of the week was spent working on construction documents for a new jewelry store called Pandora. Luckily, first semester of fourth year gave me a leg up on most other architecture students. Chris told me that a lot of colleges don’t teach students about construction documents until graduate school. It felt good knowing that I had at least a bit of an understanding of how construction documents work. Not only was it helpful that I understood what to do, but it took the pressure off of Randy and Chris for them to take time out of their schedule to try and help me learn how to navigate construction documents.

My specific tasks for Pandora were to update the demo plan, and show where all the new display cases would be in the new plan. It didn’t take long to finish the work for Pandora so I moved onto another project. This one was an addition to the Bruce and Susan Vosburg’s home. The Vosburg’s are another case where the clients are very connected to what is going on during the design stages. In fact, Susan goes over the drawing set after meetings with Chris and types a list of all the things that need to be fixed before the next meeting. The next scheduled meeting was only a few days away, so after splitting up the drawing set, I was given the opportunity to pick up red lines. A lot of people would grumble at having to pick up red lines, but to me, it’s another chance to learn things about a specific project or the way a certain detail works. Every time I work on something at RBA, whether it be designing a desk or picking up red lines, it is a constant learning experience. I’m not sure you could get this range of experience from a large, corporate firm. Since the RBA office is a small art and architecture practice, I am given the opportunity to try a lot of new things.

After work on Friday, Meg and I headed back to Kansas for her roommates birthday. By the time we got there, it was ten and we headed down to Aggieville. One things for sure, I definitely don’t mind the calm and quietness of Omaha. On Saturday, we did a few things around town that we usually didn’t have time to do during the school year; it felt strange being back in Manhattan and not going to studio. Before we left for Omaha on Sunday, we all went to breakfast at The Chef, just off of Poyntz. I had never been there before, but the food was amazing. With full stomachs and light snow falling, we headed back to Nebraska, “the good life,” and prepared for week eight at RBA.

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