The Second Studio (formerly The Midnight Charette) is an explicit podcast about design, architecture, and the everyday. Hosted by Architects David Lee and Marina Bourderonnet, it features different creative professionals in unscripted conversations that allow for thoughtful takes and personal discussions.
A variety of subjects are covered with honesty and humor: some episodes are interviews, while others are tips for fellow designers, reviews of buildings and other projects, or casual explorations of everyday life and design. The Second Studio is also available on iTunes, Spotify, and YouTube.
This week David and Marina are joined by Joe Fletcher, Architectural Photographer to discuss his transition from painting to photography; his experience with a formalized education in photography; how an architectural photographer can influence architects and architecture; his process; the distillation of architecture through photography; why photogenic buildings are not always comfortable to be in; and more.
As the climate crisis continues to present itself as a significant threat to the future of the ecosystem and built environment, this year's IPCC report, titled Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability, found that while adaptation efforts are being observed across all sectors, the progress being implemented so far is greatly uneven, as there are gaps between the actions taken and what is needed. On this year's Earth Day, we explore the progress being made by governments and architects to achieve net-zero operations within the next decades.
Light serves an essential purpose in architecture: to help us see. Whether it be through natural or artificial methods, rooms must be illuminated accordingly so occupants can safely inhabit them and fulfill their daily functions. When the right system is selected, light can also contribute to energy efficiency and sustainability within the building as a whole. However, apart from its evident functional and environmental value, lighting design can vastly impact the visual comfort and aesthetic tone of interiors by drawing attention to textures, enhancing colors and defining volumes. Therefore, of the many pieces involved in interior design, lighting is certainly one that can enhance or destroy a space and even affect users’ well-being, which is why it should be considered a crucial design element by itself.
Light is a key feature in architecture. Centuries ago, the sun and fire were the only sources of illumination, but in today's technology-driven world, artificial lighting and cutting-edge optical technologies have found ways to mimic the qualities of natural light, making it possible to have a naturally-lit-looking space within four walls. LED technologies have even made it possible to embed lighting in furniture, interior surfaces, and facades, altering with their intensities and hues to make light a main feature in the architecture's storytelling.
If used effectively, lighting can become a lot more than just an illuminator; it becomes a mood setter, a symbol to a specific emotion the architect is trying to convey. For instance, indirect lighting becomes a floater, levitating the walls from the ground and making the space seem lighter in weight, whereas orange light manipulates the space's temperature, creating the illusion that the users are walking into an intense, overheated room.
Few places have embraced sustainable design practices like California. Experiencing dramatic droughts, wildfires and environmental issues, the state has started to create new policies and initiatives to promote environmentally-conscious design solutions. From eco-districts and water management strategies to net-zero building projects, the Golden State is making strides to reshape its future. Forming long-term visions and procedures through the lens of physical resource consumption, California is working to better integrate its economic development plans with sustainable building methods.
Vladimir Belogolovsky speaks with American architect Rick Joy about his early inclinations towards architecture, what kind of architecture he likes to visit, and about designing his buildings as instruments.
Francis D. K. Ching  characterizes a chimney as an “incombustible vertical structure, which contains a duct through which smoke and gases from a fire or furnace are pushed outwards and through which an air current is created.” While its pipes can be hidden in walls or other structures, the chimney top usually remains prominent in order to transfer dangerous gases from the inside out without dirtying the interior or harming the health of the occupants. Being vertical elements, there are chimneys that become major landmarks in the urban landscape, especially in industrial projects. At the time of drawing, deciding on the “weight” that the chimney will have in a project is essential. At Casa Milá, for example, Gaudí crowns the building in sinuous and curvy sculptural chimneys. In other cases, the solemnity of the building aesthetic is mirrored in its chimney, whereas in others, the architects render the chimney as hidden as possible. Recently, too, many chimneys have been refurbished for new uses or to accommodate new cleaner technologies. Whether it takes a prominent role or is hidden from view, see below some chimney design tips and possibilities of use.