Coffee Sketch Podcast

Elaborate on That

September 30, 2021 Kurt Neiswender / Jamie Crawley Season 3 Episode 87
Coffee Sketch Podcast
Elaborate on That
Show Notes Transcript

Thank you for listening. We both hope that you enjoyed this episode of Coffee Sketch Podcast. Our Theme music is provided by my brother who goes by @c_0ldfashioned on Instagram and Twitter. Our podcast is hosted at coffeesketchpodcast.com find more show notes and information from this episode. And finally, if you liked this episode please rate us on iTunes and share us with your friends! Thank you!


Music on the Show


CNEIS - https://cneis.bandcamp.com/

c_0ldfashioned - https://www.instagram.com/c_0ldfashioned/ 

Compilation - https://triplicaterecords.bandcamp.com/track/cneis-more-or-less 


Our Links


Follow Jamie on Instagram  - https://www.instagram.com/falloutstudio/ 

Follow Kurt on Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/kurtneiswender/ 

Kurt’s Practice - https://www.instagram.com/urbancolabarchitecture/ 


Coffee Sketch on Twitter - https://twitter.com/coffeesketch 

Jamie on Twitter - https://twitter.com/falloutstudio 

Kurt on Twitter - https://twitter.com/kurtneiswender 


On the Web


Website - www.coffeesketchpodcast.com

Kurt’s Practice - www.urbancolab.design 

Contact Us - info@urbancolab.design 


Coffee Sketch Podcast is on YouTube for extended cuts and more visual content of Jamie’s beautiful sketches. Please consider subscribing!


https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_lQkY3-OqmHaTl_jdOgtvw 


Kurt’s Practice Urban Colab Architecture, shares about the practice of architecture and is also on YouTube. Please Subscribe to: 


https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuMXvvQXgrQIVE1uJ8QHxsw 


Tags


In situ, art, architecture, sketching, coffee, coffee sketch, podcast, coffee sketch podcast, what an architect does, design, design thinking, drawing, buildings, building sketches, sketches, pen, paper, sketchbook, coffee stains, watercolor, pencil sketches, markers, black and white, architects, architecting, ink sketch, ink drawing, cafe sketch, cafe sketching

Kurt Neiswender:

Hey, Jamie, how are you doing today?

Jamie Crawley:

Good. How are you? Kurt?

Kurt Neiswender:

Pretty, pretty. All right. Counting down with my fingers here. Cause I, you know, to start and this one it's one knuckle is not happy.

Jamie Crawley:

Is this like a podcast

Kurt Neiswender:

injury? Yeah. Can I get, can I get an insurance claim on that? No. No. What about your insurance?

Jamie Crawley:

No, workman's comp. No. Okay, well,

Kurt Neiswender:

it's, I guess it's a chocolate up to being old. So it's a little bit of movie magic. how are you doing today? Are you drinking anything exciting?

Jamie Crawley:

I'm still, I'm still having the groundwork coffee that I mentioned from California. Probably no affiliation with your USC Trojans, but, you know, but yeah, no, I'm still having their blend, which I kind of liked the Venice blend. So, what about, what about.

Kurt Neiswender:

I'm going to assume that's a Venice like Venice, California.

Jamie Crawley:

So to Italy, I mean the Venice, Italy was sort of where my brain went and, but I think you're absolutely right. I think it's more like Venice, California, which is, you know, stories galore from Kurt. I'm sure.

Kurt Neiswender:

Oh yeah. I like business, you know, we're we, I just had a, AI meeting for the small firm exchange and we were talking about. Conference sessions for 2022. and, and, it got me thinking about the LA conference that got canceled. The COVID cancel of, and how much I was looking forward to going out with you to, conjunctive points and. Some other MorphoSys buildings, Frank, Gary, and some,

Jamie Crawley:

you know yeah. That would have been, that's that's, that's still a trip that you and I need to plan. and we, and we could see your brother.

Kurt Neiswender:

Yeah. Yeah. We, you know, speaking to Charlie, which I forgot to mention, so I'm going to, I'm staying. I'm near the bottom of the bag on my rootless coffee dark. So, you know, maybe some groundwork I should order some or something. Try, try something new, try something new out. I was anyway, my brother, give him a brief little shout out. Speaking of music, right? Our theme music. in V what do you call it created by my brother. And, he goes by the name, cold fashioned in, his, his music side hustle. His side gig is,

Jamie Crawley:

is, is, is known the plume.

Kurt Neiswender:

So he had, recently one of his other songs, one of his other tracks in his electric music. Electronic music, get incorporated into a compilation. He was invited to this compilation record. And then I think the same, producer of that asked him to work on a full release. So, a full, I don't know if it's a full EAP or a. You know, LP, you know, like a long place. So I don't know how many tracks in total, but he asked Charlie for a project of his own.

Jamie Crawley:

Oh, fantastic. Yeah. Well, congratulations on that. And we had definite shout out for that.

Kurt Neiswender:

Yeah. We, we need to, maybe bring them back on. soon. And, he's like, oh, you know, Hey, he told me about it. And he's like, Hey, they told me they invited me to the same site. Well, that's amazing. He's like, well, yeah, but now, now I've got to make it so there's no, no better pressure

Jamie Crawley:

to have challenge accepted

Kurt Neiswender:

this right challenge. Exactly. So, so cheers to my brother. And, I knew he could do it the whole time. You know, I'm not, I, I'm not, I'm not. And I'm glad that we have his music as our theme song.

Jamie Crawley:

Absolutely. Well, and it's, we all want to see, you know, we all want to be challenged, you know, and, you know, in our, in our work and our passion projects and whatnot, but I think seeing them realized, and having those opportunities, I mean, that's what it, you know, there's, there's, you know, of course there's the nervousness and the sort of. The apprehension, but at the same time, you know, the ego and excitement and challenge sort of, you know, getting your game on, you know, that's, that's pretty great. So, awesome. I'm glad

Kurt Neiswender:

to hear that, you know, actually, as I'm known as the segway master, but using my brother's, story as a, I think this actually makes a really good segue because you have a couple of sketches. That when we start with this one, that is an idea in of your own creation, that at the moment is, is, will remain in unbuilt. But then the next one is something that will be realized. So we have. So, this is, this is how segway works,

Jamie Crawley:

right? This is, this is, I think that is, you know, you look it up and there's a picture of occurred sort of with this image and sort of pointing at it. yes. Definition of segue, segue, like the. Like in town or what they're scootering on those things. I still don't understand how they work, but

Kurt Neiswender:

yeah. magnets, I don't yeah. Fear

Jamie Crawley:

of fear of falling. So, but yeah, no, this, this is, so this is some work stuff,

Kurt Neiswender:

that if I all this into. Work stuff. This

Jamie Crawley:

CFO's into the work stuff category where you get sort of an open-ended problem and sort of a challenge, so to speak, as well, where one of our communities in north Texas, in McKinney actually, McKinney, Texas, they are. They have been a main street community for a number of years and have a very, very vibrant downtown, lots of businesses, lots of economic development, lots of investment, in both the preservation of buildings, but also they were abilitation of them. But as with any community, there are, you know, kind of under utilized spaces and, and there is, kind of the. Question of, you know, what, how to, how to, how do you address certain problems? and how do you activate certain areas of the city? how do you, in live and serve seven businesses, how do you create, you know, more secure conditions for folks, at kind of, you know, in a 24 hour presence and. One of the things that our, our network does is we, we encourage our communities to have what they call, imagine the possibilities to. and typically those are more exclusive to businesses or buildings, that are looking for a new tenant or looking for a new owner. And, you know, part of our, our work entails kind of helping, helping folks kind of envision what those possibilities might be from a conceptual design standpoint. you know, I, I do pro bono design work, and then. And then also educating them about the value of existing properties and historic preservation principles or good urban design ideas. so this one became sort of an interesting challenge because it's sort of on the, on the periphery of architectural space. This is the space in between. These are, you know, Allie activations and in an existing urban environment. And. Part of the challenge is one is sort of a really underutilized space for the, the, the, the dead end alley, in between buildings. And that's the one on the right. And then the one on the left is sort of a through street, you know, a definite active through alley, between buildings mid-block, where trash is still being. collected and stored during the week. And so there was also electrical and service utilities that are going through that space. So there's some, some, some parameters to any kind of project. one of the things that the Marc contacts in the community relays that they have tried to activate the space in the past and have kind of a mini con. and you know, somebody, you know, performing sort of, not necessarily busking on the street, but, but, but having, you know, having some little, you know, kind of musical events in, in sort of these in-between spaces to activate them, but their challenge to me was, you know, w what other ideas, I mean, kind of open canvas and what they were going to do was have an actual event. where they were doing and imagine the possibilities tour of a couple of downtown properties. But one of the things that they were really wanting to highlight was the spaces in between. They felt like they were at a certain point and had some other events kind of going on in town. so they knew they were going to have good foot traffic and lots of people coming down. And some of these spaces weren't necessarily going to be activated, but they were going to stay. Some renderings. so these renderings were stationed in, and, and gave it as opportunity to solicit some feedback from folks of, you know, w what do you, what do you think, could be in these spaces? And so the images were intentionally. Kind of to PR you know, provoke a response and sort of be a little bit further out. They're very vibrant colors and, and sort of took some cues from our discussions about sort of that Holly project, Allie competition, as sort of an, sort of, initial thought and, Modified those two more sculptural forms, that had some different functioning capacity, but it, it, it certainly was one where, and then translated it to two different spaces. So that we're in two spaces where we're, like I said, very distinct one was sort of a linear space and the other one was sort of this pocket kind of almost a creepy alley between buildings and. Yeah, dark alley and had some photos of that dark alley. And it was like, it had the fire escape and you couldn't see the end of it. And it was like, why would I ever want to go in that space? Because Batman will

Kurt Neiswender:

come

Jamie Crawley:

say because exactly, you know, Batman in our last episode,

Kurt Neiswender:

yeah. There's somebody out there.

Jamie Crawley:

Right. But it's, I think. You know, I've always had an interest in art and, you know, installation and, and things of that sort. And so this is a great challenge for me, to cause it, cause also it's, it's recognizing that there is a, there is a budget for these types of projects, you know, and even if it's not necessarily this, one's not necessarily going to get realized as it is drawn, it's intended to. Encourage somebody to think about the possibilities and do it in a way where the budget seems attainable and the concept seems attainable. So, and entitled. For someone to think about other options. And so, because they were trying to solicit some content, I mean, typically when you're doing a stakeholder meeting or something like that, and you're not, and in this case, not sure who's going to show up. there, there might be a reticent to showing any images of any concepts it's sort of that voting with you, voting with your feet. You know, you don't necessarily want to tell them, well, this is what we've decided for your space, right? But in, in this case, I think that the, the way it was programmed, it made sense to have something because otherwise I think folks really wouldn't have had any, compulsion to, to interact with, with the people who were trying to solicit content, because there were some, because they had some other events planned. so this was sort of, an interesting tool and, and having talked to them, the event has occurred. and so having talked to them afterwards, they were just, they said the response was fantastic. and it really got a lot of dialogue started about these spaces in their community. So mission accomplished. yeah.

Kurt Neiswender:

You know, I think one thing that's very interesting about what you mentioned is the intent is not necessarily to say this is the solution, but it's a proposal. visual iteration. That is a sort of snapshot in this time that that's sort of out there to provoke a response and it's not, personal to you necessarily. This is not like

Jamie Crawley:

your building or your

Kurt Neiswender:

what eventually your design would be built, but something that is for the community. And so. Just presenting them something to look at, gives them the opportunity to, to, you know, provide feedback on and they some, some may like it so may not like it, but it might give them a chance to. To react and respond. And I was recently listening to another podcast, of, of an architecture fan or I'm a fan of this other, or podcasts, but that had the similar conversation around the presentation of design projects. Right. And that they're not necessarily, it's not a personal. You know, if you're in architecture school, it really shouldn't be, you shouldn't call it your building, right. Or my building, right. This is my building, which we hear all the time. Right. But it should present it as this is the proposal for the building. That we have design because it's, it's it, you try and take away some of the personal attack that could be had if, if some, if there's a negative reaction to it, but it's really reactive to nothing

Jamie Crawley:

appointment that you personally in the world, human beings too. I mean, that's the whole thing is, and I it's, you're putting yourself out. You know, with whatever, creative work, especially as a creative, I mean, any creative work that you put out into the world, is that act alone is, should be celebrated to, you know, to the degree that it needs to be. that's. you know, it's not like a pat on the back, but it's like, I'm just saying it from the standpoint of, you know, that's, you know, that's sharing some stuff, you know, with, with the possibility of critique. And so what you're describing is, is, is absolutely, you know, you know, there for all of these things, especially as students, I think that kind of learning that kind of, opportunity to have dialogue about your work and, and. Be excited about the possibility of hearing somebody's point of view. and reaction to the things that you do. you know, I mean, you might not necessarily agree with them either and that's okay too. I mean, and that's not necessarily ego that's, that's just, you know, sometimes you have to, you do have to defend your work, and, and realize that, you know, you're, you are proud of it too, to the degree that you need to. But I, but I, but at the same time, what you described as I think is, is, ultimately makes any product. or any proposal more rich and, and I'm glad you, I'm glad you're turning to this one too, because, one of the things that, you know, we do public art projects, and public art proposals, similar to the one we just were discussing. And sometimes they get folded in as a component of a design or a design request, for our services. And there is a reluctance on our part to. Design something for somebody, for a community. You're not even just for an individual with say for a community, without having really kind of extensive knowledge of that community, you know, w you know, living in that community, interacting with that community. you know, cause sometimes these projects are very, very quick. and, timing doesn't always allow for as much discussion as you would like. Now you can't necessarily use that as a crutch either and say, oh, well, I just, I didn't know enough. So I, I just threw this, threw this out there as an idea, but I think. That balance of understanding where you are coming in as an outsider and, and identifying yourself as one, you know, to the degree that you need to, and then offering the opportunity for others to have that dialogue with you as well. in this particular case, unlike the other one, this one was. Designed site initially, and, or at least the initial steps were with stakeholders of variety of different folks. And it was a really raw space, not necessarily from the same security issues, but, there was a clear identification of need and want and desire for the community to activate a space. In between two different city blocks that were relatively open, to, to, to both street faces. So it wasn't a, an alley space. It's sort of a, kind of a, a leftover green space, not necessarily a parklet or a pocket park. and. You know, the, the buildings on either side, we're starting to get activated by two different business owners. And those business owners were, were part of the discussion as well. and then others in the community, and the city were all, you know, all kind of there that day. and the sketchbook images are the ones that sort of came out of that. And that was partially done on. and then sort of refined a little bit and then, and then provided as sort of almost visual notes of that discussion and, and then taking it to an extra sketch of a more finalized kind of concept, in color in this case, these are all shown in black and white, but, but sort of elaborating on it, to, you know, giving my, giving my own self, some, some time to think about. ask a few more questions, and, and look, and look at sort of other, other strategies for inspiration, as well as sort of digging down a little bit more on their budget, and their, and their capacity to, to execute it. but, Again, we're sort of showing two different sketches. in this case I've actually the same space, but at sort of two different times. And, and what I've learned is that this one is actually, you know, moving forward, with additional input from the city, and, and, and the community. And they've, they've reached out to a local artist, at my encouragement to help educate. using this as this kind of idea as a framework and they're sort of taking it and riffing on it and taking it further and sort of personalizing it for the community, which I just, I, I love it. I get to see

Kurt Neiswender:

it. That's a great idea. a nice example of, The mindset that is thinking more of, of an place of abundance versus scarcity. And so that, you know, your role in inspiring an idea. And then it, you know, taking root and being something that is. Is being supported financially and, through the city and the constituents there. And then also then sharing that with someone a little more local, like an artist, and that. Build on top of the framework, as you said, and, and make it even even better. Right. And not to say that your design isn't perfect or amazing, but that more sometimes is more and it can improve things right. By having more of a interactivity with, some local. Local perspective, right? Someone else's local perspective. I do like the, the sketchbook sketches, because as you were talking, I was kind of bouncing around between the plan diagram in the upper, on the left sheet above, well, there's the zoomed out plan on the very corner and then a little closer in plan to the right of that. And, and then down to the three-dimensional sketch below that, which has a really, nice dissection or like you said, visual note taking, which is probably the, one of the. The best examples of how it doesn't have to be text-based note-taking for the information to be communicated. And I, I think in this case, it's like one of those where a picture's worth a thousand words as you've, you know, diagrammed and, and sliced into this, space. And then on the right hand side, is that like more of a detail and large view of, of like a bench or something?

Jamie Crawley:

Yeah. Yeah. And, and, and that was the thing was, it was, it was ideas were coming fast and furious. you know, as you're sort of sitting, standing there talking to folks and trying to get at least pieces of the puzzle down on the page and, and, and creating at the same time. So you're sort of listening, dialoguing asking questions and then creating all kinds of in the same way. and, you know, frankly, there's not even time to take notes, you know, in, in, in sort of a written form. because I think at that point it's, it's sorta CAG tech catalog and things. and so in this particular case, it was opting for, you know, to in live in the discussion and kind of play off that energy, you know, like the abundance idea, I love that word, is exactly what this sort of became and. What what's interesting is if you don't show someone the diagram and only show someone the finished image, there's, there's a lack of the story that I think is really, really important. And, so even in talking to the community after the fact was I encouraged them to use. in any, in any presentation or any discussion, explain the concept to someone who wasn't present, so that they could, so they themselves could fill in the blanks by pointing at things on, on, on both pages. And, and I think words in this case would have, really skewed. You know, that, that conversation. and so in this particular case, I think the images help facilitate that conversation, or at least that's the intent. And from, from what I've, what I've heard is. It certainly has, has created that. and so there's sort of a committee of folk who are, you know, a lot of our projects, you know, end up, some of them were executed by professionals and then some are ex executed by the community themselves sort of in a DIY approach. volunteers, lots of volunteers, you know, S you know, some professional leads, you know, who are, you know, steering the process. In this case, you know, when you're trying to build capacity for a project and getting, you know, lots of hands it's, it's okay to let them, you know, change it and, and, and describe it the way they need to discuss. Yeah, for it to make sense to a bigger, broader audience, because at the end of the day, it really becomes theirs and that's, and that's, that's the hope and intent for sure. And, and to hear, you know, and then for me, it's, there's a delight moment of being able to see it executed and see what elements are like a three-line completely. You know, from the, from the original concepts. And then, and then what things get altered and changed? I think there's something sort of special about that as well. So, and, and I can learn and I learned from it too. Sure,

Kurt Neiswender:

sure. Cause I think the perspective should be that it is all part of a continuum and the iteration, the process of, well, I guess an evolutionary process, right? So, you know, it's not a. The end all be all solution, but it's, it's a place in time that makes sense for now. And then sort of, I, I would imagine inspires, the growth into something else, you know, entirely once, once the town is ready to city or town or wherever, you know, somebody says, well, look at. Look at the foot traffic and look at this, you know, so yeah, it's, it's very quiet. I appreciate that. That was great. thanks for those two sketches. I mean, I always say thanks because it's just there. They're also also good, but, it's nice to catch up with you and then have the. The two, you know, they're from different days. And so we were able to kind of put them together into a little bit of a narrative because it's been a, I dunno know, it's just fun. Thanks. Those are great. It's

Jamie Crawley:

been an interesting month that's for sure.

Kurt Neiswender:

Yeah. Well, I hope that cools off a little bit down there and I can send some of these norms. Clouds some shade down

Jamie Crawley:

and I go and I got to send you some Texas coffee. So, I'm going to do that. Yeah, there you go. Getting that in there.

Kurt Neiswender:

All right. Well, we'll talk to you soon. Thanks.