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The Do's and Don’ts of Architecture

Here, you’ll find a collection of writings and imagery that highlight the best of the best and poke fun at the worst of the worst.  I take on historical and local examples of architectural elements, and provides commentary and tips for use at your own home.

The real background on this issue:

My 40 years in and around the art and design fields has allowed me to meander within extremely rewarding careers in architecture and interior design. Bringing this broad spectrum view into this chosen field  has been enlightening - not only in the homes I have produced for our clients but more so in the houses that the public produce for themselves without the assistance of well trained designers. I have always found this "folk art" to be fascinating in its unique forms of creativity brought on by the low level of understanding the medium and its functions. What a contrast!! Unbeknownst to the creators of such art forms is the fact that they are producing what I have so affectionately labeled "Collage Architecture".

Do you remember making collages in elementary school? How fun that was to cut up images out of magazines and reorganize those pieces into your very own work of art. Was it awarded the premier display position on the class bulletin board or on the refrigerator door at home? Well, somehow we may have taken this art activity a little too seriously and are now (in adulthood) applying this same process to our homes. Armed with the dangerously narrow knowledge provided by the abundant shelter home magazines and popular TV home and garden shows, an ever growing group of builders and do-it-yourselfers are producing a pop culture of new home imagery.

I can not deny that I sound like an architectural snob. But, alas I do have a motive here. The public I believe is not entirely to blame for these misdirected and mutated creations. The national education of our American built heritage has been terribly anemic on all fronts and to add to that, access to professional design direction that is affordable has not been broadly attempted. Basically, as I see it, the public has been given plenty of good design tools to use but with no education or skill training in how to use them! I hope to begin to remedy that problem with a direct approach for reviewing the main pieces, or ELEMENTS, of our homes.

In my articles here, I will not address the differences of particular styles of architecture, but rather the individual and basic architectural elements common to all architectural styles and how to more properly use them. With this in mind I am hoping to do my part in preserving this beautiful and creative art while you can have a "How To" book that is a fun, easy, and a quick reference. Enjoy!

Lindsay Daniel

RESOURCES for these articals:

Great Georgian Houses of America, Vol 1, by the Architects’ Emergency Committee, republished in 1970 by Dover Publications, Inc., NY, Standard Book # 486-22491-0, Library of Congress Catalog Card Number, 71-105663.

 The Four Books of Architecture, by Andrea Palladio, republished in 1965 by Dover Publications, Inc., NY.

 Palladio, by Manfred Wundram, Taschen America, 2009,  ISBN 978.3.8365.0289.4

 The Penguin Dictionary of Architecture, John Fleming, Hugo Honour, Nikolaus Pevsner, 1972. Penguin Books Ltd, England.

 The Encyclopedia of Architecture, The Classic 1867 Edition, by Joseph Gwilt, revised by Wyatt Papworth, Bonanza Books, NY. 1982.

 The Encyclopedia of Furniture by Joseph Aronson, Crown Publishers,Inc.,NY, 1965.

 Winterthur Illustrated by John A.H. Sweeney, Winterthur Museum, Inc., 1963.

 What Not to Build by Sandra Edelman, Judy Gaman, Robby Reid, Creative Homeowner, Feberal Marketing Corp, Upper Saddle River, NJ, 2006.

Lindsay Daniel provides residential design services to Charlotte, North Carolina and the surrounding communities.