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I decided to get outside, hammer some nails. Make something beautiful
by Katy Purviance on 03/17/08 @ 09:56:31 am
Categories: News, Field Trips, Products, Articles | 404 words | 819 views

First things first: The details of the Machu Picchu Field Trip are now available. The Reservation Form will become available later on today.

I’d like to give a big THANK YOU to Visual Link Spanish for providing us with free Spanish Lessons. Check the link to the right to get started.

There’s a quote I’ve heard that goes something like this: When you commit to doing something bold, the universe steps in to help. (Okay, I think I totally botched the quote, but the point I wanted to make is this…trip to Peru…and then free Spanish lessons become available? When you sign up for your field trip, other things will start to line up for you too.)

Next, I want to tell you about Taliesin alumnus Corey Crawford.

If you’re not familiar with what it’s like to study at Taliesin, let me tell you what I learned when I visited Taliesin West a couple of years ago. Students build their own desert residence. They are forced to contend with their ideas about design in a very real and practical way. It’s like I’ve been saying for years: architects need to actually live in the places that they wish to push on others. Something that “looks cool” on the computer screen might be a nightmare to dwell within.

Imagine sleeping in a canvas tent for an entire Scottsdale winter and in a student-designed shelter the next year. Mr. Crawford and classmates took up the primitive quarters; no heat, no plumbing; and “to be one with nature.”

“It allows time to figure out firsthand what would be better for design against the cold or the morning sun in your eyes,” he says.

His dust-caked three-year tenure sits in rosy memory. “It can still bring tears to my eyes,” he says. It also produced a protégé hoping to skip conventional employment or any brush with “cookie-cutter design.”

Two years and two jobs since leaving Taliesin, Mr. Crawford calls exposure to architecture firms “a good way to see what you don’t want to do. For the most part you’re just a drafter.

“I’m a hands-on person,” says the former U.S. Navy firefighter. “I can’t draw windows for someone else.”

So, last summer, at the cusp of 40, Mr. Crawford found himself free again to ponder the world according to Wright.

“I decided to get outside, hammer some nails. Make something beautiful,” he says.


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places where you could probably learn more about designing and building in just a few days than I did after a year of grad school

Know of some others I can add here? Let me know. Have you already visited some of these places...or planning on it? Let me know and I will feature your story and your photos here!

I am starting a new kind of architecture school. Unlike most architecture schools, you wouldn't have to submit GRE scores or good grades or letters of recommendation. You wouldn't have to put the rest of your life on hold for 3 to 5 years. You wouldn't have to accrue tens of thousands of dollars in debt. At my architecture school, anyone could come for a few weeks and learn how to build a house with their own two hands. My teachers would take skills and concepts from some of these other workshops I've listed above... except classes would be held year-round to make it easy to fit into your schedule. I would have a number of different campuses around the country that would teach building designs appropriate to the local climate. And I need your help. Can you donate land for a campus? Can you dotate books for a library? Can you teach a workshop? Can you provide start-up capital? Let me know.

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