Category Archives: image presentation

Is It Real or Rendered?

Image Credit: Sotheby’s via Places Journal

As discussions of representation in design schools recognize our current collective shift into the postdigital era, Susan Piedmont-Palladino writes a pertinent article in Places Journal investigating our ever-changing relationship to images and representations of reality.

A professor of architecture at Virginia Tech, Piedmont-Palladino begins with a quote from writer Susan Sontag that emphasizes the acute importance of our ability to discern images:

” ‘A fake painting (one whose attribution is false) falsifies the history of art. A fake photograph (one which was been retouched or tampered with, or whose caption is false) falsifies reality.‘ ”

Piedmont-Palladino goes on to note that design renderings often depict an overlap between real and imagined, but that there are implications for design when architects or others choose to ignore certain realities beyond the point of making beautiful drawings. Not addressing issues of universal access during the design process, for example, can lead to exclusion and failure to meet building codes.

Head over to Places Journal for the full article.

Source: Places Journal

Drawing Post-Digitally

In an article for Metropolis, Sam Jacob explains that the proliferation of photo-realistic renderings has brought about a resurgence in drawing. He argues that today’s architects who have been raised in a digital world are fascinated with “the super-collage possibilities of Photoshop and the extreme flatness of Illustrator that established a different kind of image discourse: one that considered other types of digital space, other forms of graphic quality, and simultaneously a set of alternative architectural propositions.” It seems that the envisioned all-digital future of architecture may appear the way we foresaw.

Source: Metropolis

James Turrell: Prints and Process


Light is essential to how we view the world. Our eyes absorb and refract light allowing us to see, much the same way a camera lens absorbs light to record an image. Artist James Turrell—creator of acclaimed Guggenheim light installation Aten Reignpresents a re-visitation of the work in printed form. The goal was to translate the installation’s immersive light to paper and ink. The challenge was representing the installation’s luminosity in pigment—considering light blends together to create colors differently than ink. Created in collaboration with Pace Prints, the result is an array of saturated wood-cut prints that beautifully capture the interplay between light and architecture.

Experience James Turrell’s Skyspace at The University of Texas at Austin. It’s free!

Source: Artsy Editorial

Old and New Photo Fusion


Blogger Jason King was inspired to reflect upon Portland, Oregon’s history of hidden hydrology through viewing Photography Then and Now’s interactive photos that juxtapose an exact location through a lens of historical events and the present day. King’s images challenge one to not only contemplate urban metamorphosis through the built environment but also ecologically.

Source: Landscape+Urbanism

World’s Smallest Sandcastles

Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 11.21.01 AM

These sandcastles created by artist Vik Muniz in collaboration with MIT researcher Marcelo Coelho are etched onto individual grains of sand.  Utilizing a focused Ion Beam (FIB) capable of creating a line 50 nanometers wide, he created unique, minute architectural drawings. Blown up to wall-sized photographs, these works take a new look at the microscopic. Check out a video of Vik Muniz and his work here.

Source: This Is Colossal

Dutch Master Painting Comes To Life (And Dies Again)

dutch master painting

Artists Rob and Nick Carter have breathed life into old Dutch master paintings at The Frick Collection in New York.  The artists took more than 3 years and 5,000 hours to meticulously recreate the painting Vase With Flowers In A Window in stunning digital detail.  The only difference between the digital and the real painting is the flowers slowly wilt and decompose as the viewer experiences the new version in the 4th dimension.  In this reiteration, on show from October 22, 2013 to January 19, 2014 at The Frick Collection, the artists explore the re-animation of iconic art objects as digital paintings.

Image Source: The Creators Project

Outside Inside

10_11_13_Abelardo Morell

In the aptly named series, Camera Obscura, photographer Abelardo Morell marries the inside with the out by turning rooms into camera obscuras. This technique projects an inverted image of the view from directly outside onto the walls, floor, and ceiling. He then uses a large format camera to capture the image created inside the room.

Image Source: The J. Paul Getty Museum

High and Low Tide Superimposed


In the series, Sea Change, Michael Marten superimposes images of seascapes at high and low tide. He photographs each scene between 6-18 hours apart to show the dramatic difference that occurs throughout the day. Marten hopes to reconnect people with the natural rhythm of the earth and remind them of its dynamic nature.

Image Source:  Visual News

Fun Friday: Found Film

10_04_2013_vintage photos found

Photographer and graphic designer Chris A. Hughes‘ collection of antique found film spins images into speculative short stories. His obsession has led him to collect over fifty rolls of undeveloped film, stowed away in vintage cameras that Hughes forages from flea markets and antique malls across the country. Processing one roll a week, Hughes displays each image set with its respective camera on his website gallery, Found Film.

Image source: Petapixel


Interactive Before-and-Afters of NYC Architecture

before and after

NYC Grid is a photo blog created by Paul Sahner with the goal of documenting and exploring New York neighborhoods. He has paired his images with historical photographs and an interactive element allows one to reveal more or less of the before or after image by sliding it back and forth. Sahner’s comparison between the past and present highlights the ephemeral nature of New York.

Image Source: NYC Grid