Life Imitating Art            

It’s funny that I spent so much time in my last blog piece talking about my appreciation for roofs, because not even two days after posting that article, I had to bring my attention to my own roof. I was at my computer working on a piece for a different writing gig that I have, when all of a sudden a large drop of water hit my keyboard. I was kind of staring at it with mild confusion before another hit, and then another. Looking up, there was a small black splotch on the ceiling of my office, and upon further investigation in my attic, I had apparently developed quite a leak up there that needed to be tended to quickly.

Now, the next step I took may sound a little foolish, but it’s the way I went about things. In knowing that I needed a professional roofer for my task at hand, I began to look up local companies on the internet. When I had their relative pages loaded, I skipped over all their relevant information, all the speak of experience and more, and went straight to their imagery. I started to narrow down the selection of company to do my work based on how good their previous roofing jobs looked. Not only in terms of repairs and such, but items that they had created from scratch. And hey, if it looked good as a finished product, it must have also worked to some degree right? It was only after seeing their handiwork did I bother looking further into their actual qualifications. Yeah, I know, kind of backward but that’s who I went about it.

After spending a few hours looking around on various sites, I started to really narrow down the field of choice for some reason or another in the process of elimination until I had one company standing. A local roofing company called Citadel Roof. The previous work that they had done looked great, and reading further into their experience and such, I knew I was making a decent choice in a local crew that really cared about roofs. I called them later the next day, and they were on my property in hours to give everything a once over and come up with an estimate. After their walkthrough was done, a fine chap sat down with me and talked out the process, he gave a number I was satisfied with, and I gave them the go ahead.

It turned out repairing my leak wasn’t all that big of a job, and took them next to no time to get completed. The great part about it though, was getting to strike up a conversation with the roofer afterward. I lamented in my last post how I wanted to be able to pick the brain of one who comes up with designs, and my roofer was more than happy to allow it. I got to learn many things about the design process that I will use in a mater post to bring more information to you all.


yay-8133848-digitalIn the opening post to this blog I took the time to let you guys know where my passions for architecture first stemmed from, but one aspect that I left out was my particular focus of fascination when it comes to building design, and it may sound strange to admit, but I love roofs. There’s something about a beautiful roofing design that truly catches my attention, and whether we’re talking spinnerets, or fantastical flow in design, or more world famous pieces like the dome in Italy, there’s just something magical about the roof of a building. When looking at any form of architecture, the roof of the building is one of the pieces that always immediately catches your eye. It is the final topping so to speak that pulls an entire building together, and whether it’s a centuries old castle, or a new home going up down the block, the right roof can pull an entire look together perfectly, or stand out like a sore thumb.

Roofs can also be the most difficult to design, because you want something that fits the overall look and feel you’re going for, but at the same time you have the opportunity to create something truly unique. It must put a lot of pressure on a home designer when it comes to the roofing aspect of the drawing. To want to deliver something special and new, and yet still maintain a level of restraint to ensure that it still fits with the design of the rest of the building. It would be nice to be able to sit down and speak with someone who designs roofs to see what their thoughts are on the matter, and the process they go through when it comes to bringing a new design to the table.

Even beyond the big millionaire homes, and new churches and such, I find even locally there are some really amazing and well thought out roofing designs that go on everyday homes across the area. I find myself watching construction and roofing crews on a new project, trying to imagine what the finished product is going to look like, and then coming back months later to see if my estimate was anywhere near what it actually looks like when its completed. Sometimes, my observances over the years allow me to guess pretty close to the actual look and feel, and sometimes I am blindsided by how different it actually turns out, I love the latter ones.

This has turned into quite the gushing piece about roofs, but it’s something that I find to be one of the most interesting pieces of architecture. I’m sure that there are other aspects of buildings that those who appreciate find themselves just as fascinated with. I spoke once with a guy who’s favorite piece was doors, and had gone all over the world to view buildings with doors that he loved. I’m sure there’s a focal point for everyone, and I’m more than happy to hear about them.

Blank Canvas

When most people think of art, they picture a painting hanging on the wall of some fancy gallery, or maybe they think of a sculpture standing in the middle of an immaculate garden, but to me, art is represented through every building around us. The time, care and precision that goes into architecture and design is just as beautiful, and precise as the most celebrated pieces of visual art out there. I decided after years of formulating my appreciation of these things to blog, and getting the word out there for others who may share my passion to find a place to have discussions of this matter, to bring up the buildings and bridges we’ve seen that have struck a chord with us.

I assume the best place for me to start is at the beginning of why and how I came to this level of appreciation for architectural art, and what first spurned this love. As with most things in life that we grow to appreciate, it all started with my parents, my dad specifically. He drew up blueprints for a major building company, and watching him for hours on end at hid desk, all forms of rulers and protractors strewn around the room, trying to get a design just right, was always something that interested me. I would see him start with a blank piece of paper, and eventually create a space that would house thousands, out of thin air and the imagery in his mind. I would see these transform from thoughts on paper, to actual buildings over the span of my childhood, to have been there at the moment of creative inception, and there again to see it come to fruition.

When he had to come up with a concept drawing for a pitch, the entire building would be drawn out as it’s completed form, trees, benches, walkways, like he was creating a sketch of a place that he was staring at constantly, and yet this building didn’t exist anywhere but his own mind. It’s hard not to put that into the same category as any other piece of art. To take something from the recesses of your brain and to make it a reality. These are the things that first spawned my love of architecture in general.

The final piece of the puzzle was when I was fresh out of high school and took a trip to Europe. I wanted to some some of the old gothic architecture there, and especially a building that I had been in love with my entire life, the Notre Dame cathedral. And I tell you, when I was there, standing a few hundred yards away and staring at the building in all its glory, it was a truly awakening moment. This amazing piece of property that went from an idea, to a standing structure for hundreds of years, it was the final piece I needed to truly give myself over to my passion. Since then I have travelled all over, and travelled locally, to find the best pieces I could.