Saturday, 22 September 2012

An update . . .

Just wanted to update the blog to mention that I went to Ottawa and Montreal 2 weeks ago for the long weekend (Labour Day). I saw many things . . . the Aviation Museum (where I took a helicopter tour of downtown Ottawa and Hull), the Canadian War Museum, the National Gallery of Art and the Canadian Museum of Civilization, across the river in Hull, Quebec. I met with the Associate Director of the Masters of ArcIhitecture program at Carleton University and she gave me a few tips on the portfolio (present it less like a technical document with 1 image per page and more like a creative composition). I also met her two young pre-teen daughters who were thinking of going into architecture like their mother. One girl said that she can always find her way back to her mother's office in campus. They were funny. Always playing. The Assoc. Director said that the students were on the calibre of the students she taught at RISD (Rhode Island School of Design). However, they didn't realize how good they were (in other words they were very humble). In any case, Carleton is Lise Ann Couture's alma mater. She is a partner in the New York based firm, Asymptote. I had actually applied there for a job but all they offered me was an unpaid internship. Living in New York City is expensive so I didn't go for it but it would have been nice to have worked for that office.

I also made a side trip to Montreal where I met my friend from Dalhousie. She is a female architect living there with her daughter. We discussed me doing drawings for her for her shipping container home designs.

In any case, I've got several irons in the fire.

Was able to make it out to the Art Gallery of Ontario today. Saw the Evan Perry exhibit of gigantic stretched proportion sculptures of people. They were a bit disconcerting but I had to admire their craftsmanship and lifelikeness. Did several sketches of the artwork in the Modern Wing. I also met an artist at the Tim Horton's at John and King streets. He was African Canadian and was working on an eagle emblem for a poster using cut pieces for the feathers. It was very eye-catching.

Well, all for now. Time to sleep. Church tomorrow morning.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Things are getting interesting . . .

On Monday, I spoke with the Landscape Architect who is in charge of the design department and he thinks that if I obtain my Licensed Technologist OAA stamp, that I could stamp their cabana drawings. This would translate into a promotion and pay increase (hopefully). Not sure if I am up for it but maybe I can try this as a foray into licensure as an Architect.

I registered for a Ontario Building Code Part 9 Structures course at Humber College. It is close to work although with the course being on Saturday and Sunday, I will have to purposely make a trip to Toronto's West End in order to go to class. My girlfriend says that I should not take the course and to prioritize God first (because I won't be able to go to Church). But it's only for 2 Sundays and I'll be back into the fold again. Hope that God can forgive me. Who knows, maybe the Lord will work in His ways to make me able to go to Church.

Right now, I am pursing a 2-fold path: I am going to take all the courses needed to get a Building Code Identification Number (BCIN) but I am also going to pursue Licensure as a Technologist with the Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) and the Ontario Association of Applied Architectural Sciences (OAAAS).

I asked my former boss about the difference between the two designations and he wasn't aware of the Technologist designation. However, he emphasized to ask the OAA because they know everything.

The Technologist stamp is octagonal. The Architect's stamp is round/circular. The BCIN stamp is rectangular. The Engineer's stamp is circular.

The only drawback is I would have to return the stamp upon completing a term of employment with my present employer. Not sure what I would do if I wanted to practice as a sole proprietor.

Have to carry indemnity insurance once licensed. It's offered through the OAA's insurance company policy contact.

Still looking into schools for the Masters of Architecture program. New School of Architecture and Design in San Diego is attractive. So are University of Toronto, Ryerson U and Carleton U. Want to inquire more about Laurentian U's program that will become available in 2015. Still too early for that. The Dean of the new architecture program is a former Dalhousie prof of mine.

Friday, 27 July 2012

on the rebound . . .:)

The Chinese Architect and me are still on good terms but I no longer do any continuous work for him. He might be good to do odd jobs for but his office is not very busy. He still has my Sketches of Frank Gehry DVD.

Anyway, I am currently working for a pool and landscaping company. It's pretty interesting work. Drawing cabanas. We do a lot of them and have many clients. Some projects are 2 years in the making. Good people and a lunch room full of food. Yum.

Looked into the Broadly Experienced Architect program (BEA) at NCARB. This may be an option if I don't get into a Masters program. However, that would mean I would have to move down to the States. Hmmm. I lived and worked there before. In Houston and in Raleigh-Durham. However, I would like to live and work in either New York or California which happen to be 2 places that I can do the BEA, I believe. Not all states honour the program.

Still working on the cottage project. The client shelved it when the design had trouble fitting on the proposed site with all the zoning restrictions. Should have researched this beforehand. I got paid half my fee and I offered to do the working drawings for free should he need them in the future. He is considering purchasing a 3rd property (he already has 2) and living in the cottage residence. I have more time to do the Ontario Building Code references.

Composed a new song for the keyboards.

May have additional work of doing drawings for a former Dalhousie University classmate of mine. Not sure if I can handle this as well. However, I'd like to try. Haha.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Not sure what to do . . .

I am in a dilemma. My boss hired another employee to work for him. My hours at the small practice have been scaled back partly due to this and partly of my own volition that I have to dedicate more time to my church friend client's cottage project. On the good side is that the project is now a 3 storey cottage holiday home and is going to be much larger (after 4 re-designs) than anticipated. The client increased the budget as well. I also got paid more than I thought I would be receiving for the design, permit drawings and site supervision aspects of the project. We are going to enter into a contract which is Biblical. On a different note, this client and our female friend who was going to be the recipient of his organ donation were not a match. Please pray for her. I will continue to do this project. Looking at entering possible design competitions like Spark. Not sure about it though. Looking to potentially get a full-time job with a firm through a former classmate of mine who works there. Also potentially looking into a teaching position at a local community college. Potentially looking at going to California for a 1 month internship with an architect whose work I admire, Dr. Eugene Tssui of TDR Inc.