2009.11.26 Stained

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2009.11.17 Sunrise

Boom.

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2009.11.05 Where You Know Every Body's Name - Night

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2009.10.31 Where You Know Every Body's Name - Day

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2009.10.28 delirious one twenty fourth II

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2009.10.26 delirious one twenty fourth

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2009.10.14 More tripod fun



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2009.10.02 - Pecha Kucha Night 5 - edmonton in three dimensions

The second in what may have to become an annual tradition for me, here are the slides for the eponymous PKN5 presentation edmonton in three dimensions

Generic introduction. Did you notice the riverboat?



More generic introduction. Did you notice the pedway?



A little under 3 years. A little over 200 models. (to be fair, many of those contain multiple buildings, so the building count is somewhat higher)



Modeling How-To



Gathering Images



Plan



Massing



Creating Textures



Applying Textures



Adding Friends



New York as done by Google. Very cool...but where's the love? (this was a mystery slide that didn't show up in my presentation)



The High Level Bridge - even with the fancy semi-auto generated cities, for signature stuff you still need to go the manual route.



More signature stuff. Westmount Junior High is what got me into the PKN5 theme of "Old School." Also the Fed, Leg, Bowker and Prince of Wales Armouries.



More signature stuff. Peter Hemingway Aquatic Centre, City Hall, TWOS, MacEwan and Commonwealth. Two of my other Modern models worth checking out are the Baker Clinic and QEII Planeterium - both are in pretty bad shape in the real world, but are made pretty again through sketchup.



The model of the downtown is basically done, which means anyone can use it to visualize things like the currently under construction EPCOR tower.



Gone but not forgotten: 1957 City Hall, Edmonton Art Gallery, 1923 Library, 1912 Court House, the Arlington and Central Pentecostal Tabernacle.



Revisionist History - the Tegler Building at modern day 101st and 102ave. Anyone can play.



The Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village - using Google Earth as a clickable guide to a multi-building site.



Paris (by Kévin GIRARD), New York (by Kévin GIRARD), and Dubai (by carlitos) come to Edmonton.



Lots done. Lots left to do.



Slides from my PKN2 Reclaiming Deadmonton presentation are here.

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2009.09.24 Enjoying the Equinox



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2009.08.15 dEdmonton takes Spruce Grove



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2009.08.08-09 Wander in Denver



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2009.07.16 dEdmonton in the 2009 Capital Ex Parade



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2009.07.12 Whyte Avenue Art Walk



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2009.07.03 Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village



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2009.06.30 Alberta Aviation Museum



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2009.07.05 A quiet Sunday afternoon in Churchill Square



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2009.07.01 The rest of my Canada Day



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2009.07.02 Eighteen Bridge Tour



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2009.07.01 Canada Day Fireworks



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Commonwealth Stadium


Model and Building information

Commonwealth Stadium is an interesting one. Built at the tail-end of the brutalist era, it is all raw-concrete, form-following-function perfection:



Because of that perfection though, anything outwardly recognizable as human has been suppressed. From the outside it could be the fossilized remains of some prehistoric creature, an elaborate burial monument, or just a giant abstraction. The key point is that it is colossal, because like an Airport or a Refinery people aren't the driving factor here. Commonwealth is built on the scale of firstdowns, and is designed for the swarm or throng. The individual is secondary and there is no pretense to the contrary.



Entrances obviously serve a basic functional role, but beyond that they have always had an important symbolic value. An entrance is the threshold between interior and exterior or between us and them, and is generally celebrated or embellished with visual cues. At Commonwealth the entrances are hidden behind the same cladding that is used throughout, vanishing into a seemingly unbroken shell, and distinguishable only because of typography. Even when you identify which wall sections are the entrances, there is nothing to say that these are necessarily for people. Their generic nature could just as easily be intended for cattle or vehicles.

A wall along the north is the only detail to reveal that Commonwealth does exist in a world of people. It is recognizable as human-scale by virtue of being just tall enough to keep people out.



When Commonwealth was built in the late 1970's the year 2001 was still the distant future, and like a lot of brutalism I think that it was built for that future.

When 2001 actually arrived though, it wasn't interested in being the future anymore. Commonwealth grew wings, and for the first time it had recognizable doors and even windows. It had a new facade built around familiar distances like 50', stucco textured to appeal to a vague memory of brick and masonry, and comfy earthtones drawn on with a thick marker.



This is powercentre architecture. The repeated sculptural elements in particular - with their easy hints of an oil derrick, the Grey Cup, and Olympic flame, and maybe the chalice of mythology - are the decoration of suburban parking lots. They are symbolism reduced to a game of pictionary.

If Commonwealth was too austere and distant, then this swings too far the other way as a pantomime of what a building should look like. Where Commonwealth implies permanence this screams disposable, and where Commonwealth made a statement this isn't even trying.

As for the model, Commonwealth Stadium and Rexall Place are a bit of a matched pair, and there are two Rexall Place models (here and here) that other people did back in 2007. I guess that NHL arenas are more interesting than CFL ones? I'm not in the area very often, so it took me quite a while to get around to making Commonwealth.

If you look at the satellite photos of the stadium you'll see that there's a severe foreshortening happening, with one side looking much deeper than the other. That made the model a bit tricky, because I don't know which side was actually correct. Because of that many of the dimensions - particularly of the curves in the corners - are a bit made up.

There is also a gym that is located on the south side of the stadium which isn't included in the model. When I was taking photos the entire southern section of the site was being excavated for the construction of a new Recreation Centre. Rather than model the gym now, I decided to wait until the rec centre is complete.

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2009.06.30 Retro 124 Street



I've mentioned 124 Street before. Its history goes back to the early part of the 20th century, with it really taking off around 1908. In spite of that, and in spite of the fact that it is flanked by neighbourhoods that are very old by Edmonton standards the street itself has very little historic architecture. Just a handful of buildings remain, all basically within a stone's throw from the intersection of the former Edward Street and Athabasca Avenue.

What 124 Street does have a lot of is Modernism, but because these buildings are old without being "historic" they are often overlooked. If they were any other medium though, they would be praised for their quirks as kitsch or vintage, and so here is a quick tour of Retro 124 Street:

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2009.06.27 Two Concerts - No Waiting



Jazz in the Park in Louise Mckinney park. Part of the Edmonton International Jazz Festival:










Ongoing entertainment in Churchill Square as pat of The Works Art and Design Festival:





Some miscellany:














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