City Letters

Celebrating Art



The Heights: Anatomy of a Skyscraper
Kate Ascher, BuroHappold, Columbia
(Penguin 2011)
Those interested in such topics will be glad to note that Heights has a segment on sustainability. Cover from the web.

While we are in this drawer of the card catalogue:
Built: The Hidden Stories Behind our Structures
Roma Agrawal
(Bloomsbury 2018)

Process Notes
I was having trouble with artistic – if I may use that term – decisions versus reality.

The original plan was to have a classic skyline with little squares of color representing windows in each building. I could NOT get this to happen. The guides wouldn’t line up with the letters. Big squares looked wrong. Small squares would take forever to place individually. Would the spaces between the windows be a different size than the windows? Looking at the cover, I decided to try a grid to represent the steel beams. It came together in a snap for a result was less cliché and more on point.

So, my question for any real artists out there, if you are struggling to make something happen, does that mean it is the wrong approach? Conversely, if an element is right for the image/product/work, does it come together happily? Or am I seeing patterns that don’t exist?

In a similar vein, I was bothered by the unfinished bottom corners on each letter. Because of the way Inkscape draws lines, vertical lines stop at the top and bottom of the box and the horizontal lines stop at the sides, leaving spaces on the outside corners of a square. This bothered the completeist in me. Then I decided it actually worked better to represent steel scaffolding. If ya can’t change it, make it a feature rather than a bug.

Thank you for reading.
Katherine Walcott

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