LA 4504 . Hybrid Analytical Representation

Wharf 5 Tide Predictions by Wilfred Castillo

Wharf 5 Tide Predictions by Wilfred Castillo

“Thought or reflection… is the discernment of the relation between what we try to do and what happens in consequence.” – John Dewey. Democracy in Education. (New York: The MacMillan Company, 1916), p.169.


The diagram offers to the designer a prime point of reflection, an analytical pause within a sequence predicated on the act of making. Diagramming is a process of systematically laying one’s hands on one’s vision of place: it is both intuitive and responsive. Through the diagram, one can parse through the minutia of a space, systems, and time. The diagram translates form and material into notational marks; at its best, a diagram is an orchestration of measured, edited data that moves beyond the pictorial. It is within the diagram that most cogent and essential design moments can be found.

This course will tackle the diagram as an analytical tool in the design process. The course will focus on a notational language specific to landscape architecture and its associated systems. Working between tightness and looseness, this course will aim at building drawings that transcend the incidental appearance of places and immerse themselves in the phenomenological experience of occupiable space.

It will be framed around a hybridized approach to the diagram; both analog and digital work will be required.


This course will facilitate the development of hybridized representation techniques specific to the study of landscapes. Students will learn cognitive and observational skills that will direct the representations beyond the pictorial, towards the representation of those quantities more elusive than image: time, motion, change, and perceived boundary, to name a few. Students will learn to appropriately utilize a variety of static and dynamic media including hand drawing, Adobe Illustrator, After Effects, AutoCAD and 3-D Studio Max.

The work will be devoted to a single site and a composite set of hybrid diagrams.


Students will be expected to have access to both hand and digital representation tools. Course readings will be supplied by instructors.

Because of the short time frame for the class it is important that students are prepared for the first day of class with the following software and materials.

  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Autodesk 3ds max 2011
  • Adobe Photoshop CS 4 or 5
  • Adobe Illustrator CS 4 or 5
  • Adobe After Efficts CS 4 or 5 (optional)
  • digital camera
  • 25’ (min) tape measure
  • stop watch/timer
  • sketchbook, logbook or comparable
  • mayline or t-square
  • ruler
  • adjustable triangle
  • spray mount or double-sided tape
  • cutting board and xacto
  • 24×36 sheets of mylar (3-5 sheets or roll)
  • ink pens of varying line weights
  • pencils (graphite and colored lead)
  • collage material (tape of varying thickness, acetate or other transparent sheet material)