March 26, 2007

I really do live in a silo. Here is a monster design blog I've only just discovered (makes me feel inadequate)that deserves a visit.

Master architectural photographer Simon Scott

Mike Chadwick's recent book, Vancouver In Focus: The City's Built Form is an opportunity to consider the art of architectural photography.

While Chadwick's images were taken with a Pentax SLR, the more common professional photographer's choice for architecture is the field camera.

It's the camera with bellows and requires a tripod and makes large negatives.

More importantly, field cameras have a complex structure, an architecture even, in its design that compensates for distortions which occur when one shoots with an SLR camera. And to help us understand the art of architectural photography, VBD interviewed Simon Scott.

Simon Scott is one of the city's best (highly recommended by architects who know) and he agreed to join VBD in front of Arthur Erickson's MacMillan Bloedel building in Vancouver to talk about his art and craft.

Acton Ostry Architects win two awards

Just announced in Canadian Architect, Vancouver firm Acton Ostry Architects have won two awards for their use of wood in their design. At the BC WoodWorks Awards, they received the Institutional Wood Design Award and the Architect Award.

Check out, their website and also listen to my previous interview with Mark Ostry (not "Ostrey") on design and religion for CBC special series, Sacred Spaces.

March 19, 2007

Penny Page, reality show survivor designer (NO LONGER)

LATEST - The Penny has dropped but VBD thinks her design sense is top notch.

Penny's own apartment highlighted her elegant neo-classical minimalism.

Her suite featured an antique Recamier chaise longe and some of her grandfather's black and white photographs of flowers. The photos reminded me of the photo studies by German master photographer, Karl Blossfeldt. Beautiful. And it looks like Penny has her grandfather's eye for composition and design.

Good luck, Penny. You're VBD's Designer Superstar!!!


March Madness is in the Sweet 16 round but for Penelope Page it's the Final 3.

The Vancouver-based interior designer is one of the trio remaining in HGTV's Designer Superstar Challenge. VBD had a chance to interview Penny at her home studio. If you want to know if she makes the Finals, tune in tonight at 10 PM to HGTV.

Also check out her website.

Psycho Acoustics and Architecture

An interview that will prick up your ears: psycho-acoustics. It's the art and science of how sound and space effect our health.

A forum took place in March at UBC on the topic. It's part of the dWellbeing lecture series at Green College. VBD had a chance to speak with a presenter before the event.

Murray Hodgson is a professor of engineering and an acoustic designer. Here's his interview with VBD.

For more information on the next (and final) dWellbeing lecture visit

March 18, 2007

Hotness of the hat

VBD visited Edie Orenstein of Edies Hats on Granville Island. Edie had a lot to say about the resurgence of hats and how's and what's of wearing one. And by the way, what's good hatiquette? Edie has the answers in her interview with CBC's On The Coast and Vancouver By Design.

March 16, 2007

Invention and design at Nokia Vancouver

I was surprised to learn about what's going on at Nokia's Vancouver R&D facility. The work there is not theoretical. The researchers there are actually having an impact on how we use our portable devices, or at least yours, I have none, except, of course, my mind.

One inventor with a high batting average is Patrick Wong. He holds four patents and has forty pending. I visited Patrick (right) and Director of Research Brad Lowe at their secure facility.

Yup. Gates, a checkpoint, a friendly but deadly receptionist and keypads which makes it the most secure facility I've visited since touring Joint Task Force Directorate Nine of Joint Forces Command in Suffolk, Virginia.

At least there were no US marines...I don't think there were. Here's my interview with Patrick and Brad.