If I were an architect, I think my work would be similar to that of the guy who designed the Leaning Tower of Pisa, except with the signature angle accentuated a bit more.  That is to say, it would be the “Giant Pile of Rubble of Pisa.”

I am not skilled in this field. My concept of a building is not complex. My design philosophy is perhaps best represented by this diagram:

I guess there would also be a floor of some sort.

Seriously, that’s it. Even the LEGO buildings that I made as a kid looked about like this. The everyday triangular roof is a tricky concept for me. And just forget about anything with curves! Whenever I see a building with curves, it freaks me out; how do they do that?

I’ve mentioned before my pathetic ignorance of this art. But I’ve been trying to remedy it by reading as much as I can about architectural styles, philosophies, techniques etc. I’m pleased to report that I’ve learned some stuff.

So far, I’d say that the closest thing to my “style”  I’ve seen is the one called “Brutalism“:

Buffalo City Court Building, an example of “Brutalist architecture. From Wikipedia, by user “Fortunate4now”

I like this style. There’s none of this “working with the landscape”.  It seems to say “See this? It’s a building. That’s right, a big freakin’ block for people to go inside of.”  Oh, sure, it’s ugly.  But if I were designing buildings, I’d be concerned mostly with making sure the thing was really solid more than I would be with looks.  I wouldn’t want to be remembered as “the guy whose beautiful building collapsed when a stiff breeze came up at the grand opening”. Maybe I’m too risk averse for this stuff.

Another thing I’ve discovered is about how I learn things.  Some people are “visual” learners: they need to see a picture to understand a concept.  Other people are more abstract, learning stuff by reading about it.  And some people, like me, need both pictures and words–usually several times–before they understand stuff.

If I just read a description of, for instance, Art Nouveau, I can’t picture it in my mind at all.  And if I just see a picture of it, I have no idea what about it makes it distinct from, say, Art Deco.  I have to pretty much carefully read a description of an instance of the one style, while looking at a picture, and then do the same for the other.  It doesn’t come naturally at all.  I think I’ve finally got it, though: AD tends to have more lines, AN tends to have more curves.

So far, that’s what I’ve learned. If I become an expert in the field, I’ll be sure to report back. Although I doubt you can do that just by reading Wikipedia…

For years, the Madden football video game series depicted Peyton Manning with the wrong facemask on his helmet. To most people–“normal” or “sane” people, I hear is what they’re called–this fact probably never even registered. Most virtual football enthusiasts probably never gave it a thought. But frankly, it bothered me. I mean, I didn’t boycott the game over it, but every time I saw the virtual Manning, it annoyed me a little that he had the wrong facemask.

Everybody has things about which they can pick out small details and other things about which they know nothing. In writing my post about how I know nothing about architecture, I realized that there are probably many people (who are not even professional architects) who feel the same way if someone calls a Victorian house an Edwardian house as I feel when a virtual football player wears a mask with four horizontal bars when in reality he only has three.

A lady friend of mine once told me about how women can perceive all sorts of differences among various kinds of shoes, to which men are completely oblivious. I actually tried to research and comprehend the different styles of women’s shoes, but in vain. It is a closed book to me. Whereas, without even consciously trying, I learned all the different facemasks. (The Rex Ryan jokes write themselves here.)

So, is there anything you notice every little detail about? Or anything that some people you know notice all the details of, but you don’t?