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Wayne State University

Aim Higher

pattern in nature, and design

This is the pyramid of the sun, which is located in the pre-Hispanic city of Teotihuacan in Mexico. This colossal structure was built by the Toltecs, which outdate the Aztecs.  In this early form of architecture, we are able to more clearly see how nature has always influenced the creations of man.  Notice how the pyramid points up towards the sky, and has steps, that are meant to be climbed.

This is the pyramid of the sun, which is located in the pre-Hispanic city of Teotihuacan in Mexico. This colossal structure was built by the Toltecs, which outdate the Aztecs. In this early form of architecture, we are able to more clearly see how nature has always influenced the creations of man. Notice how the pyramid points up towards the sky, and has steps, that are meant to be climbed.

The chapter on pattern language in Christopher Anderson’s book “The Timeless Way of Building”, goes into poetic detail, about how the world we’ve built today, contains a pattern language. By pattern language, Christopher Anderson means that pattern is intrinsic to nature, and is the building block of existence, and this is reflected through architecture, and the design of cities. ¬†Pattern in the most miniscule way, can be found in our DNA, or in a tree’s trunk through the rings that show its age.

Acknowledging that there is a naturally occurring order(through pattern) in nature that has influenced all of the great inventions of humankind can give designers a different outlook on why design/ the arts, science, and mathematics are important. They are our reactions to the complex design of nature, the world, and the universe.

Nature is perfect, and self reliant. We try to mimic the perfect acts of nature with our manmade physical inventions, the materials used to create these machines, objects, and technologies are extracted from nature. That is to say that design isn’t something created by man, it has always existed in nature, and man just tries to mimic it.

Our pattern language and behavior, that has erected great cities with great architecture, is pattern layered on pattern, that is layered on top of the perfect pattern of natures landscape.

We’ve been trying to understand, figure out, and mimic nature so much that we’ve began to greatly influence its behavior in a destructive way.

Human beings are a part of nature.

As designers, we have to take a minute to step back, and forget about the job we’re trying to work towards, and the money we’re trying to earn, and really pay attention to what’s happening around us. ¬†Our designs that combine word with imagery draws peoples attention. What are we reacting to, and what type of visual message are we trying to convey? How does your environment influence you?

Notice the rings in the trunk,that tell a tree's age.

Notice the rings in the trunk that tell a tree’s age.

Notice the pattern.

This is the avian flue virus viewed from an electron microscope. Notice repetitive pattern.

Notice the pattern occurring in this microscopic view of DNA.

Notice the pattern occurring in this microscopic view of DNA.

Considered the architect of Detroit, here is one of Albert Kahn's buildings, which appropriately shows pattern in architecture.

Considered the architect of Detroit, here is one of Albert Kahn’s buildings, which appropriately shows pattern in architecture.

There is pattern that is being illustrated in this contemporary design.

There is pattern that is being illustrated in this contemporary design by Marian Bantjes.

Being passive is boring.

Think about it.

Our visual messages have the power to do more than please a client.

 

Posted by Bianca Ibarlucea on January 14, 2013

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