Week 4: Architectural detail

February 13-19

Hey all! Are you feeling behind in the prompts and then spiraling into the inaction phase? I believe in your creative abilities and would like to tell you to it’s okay to let go. These are supposed to be fun prompts, not high-pressure situations where you feel bad about yourself if you don’t do one week. You can always come back to the prompt that you missed. I write this as I still need to complete week 3’s prompt—something I’ve been ruminating on for this whole week (these posts are written the week before the scheduled send date).

You are a creative person, and you have the ability to execute these prompts in the manner you want.

Onto week 4!

When discussing architecture, you probably think of towering skyscrapers or intricately built houses. Basically, any building that looks cool. This is true but rather limiting. You don’t need to be in a historic neighborhood, an urban downtown area, or an enormous theater. There are crown moldings indoors, balcony railings, pillars that hold up buildings: a whole array of items to look at. Does it even need to look cool to be an architectural detail? (No.)

The word detail implies a micro view (ironically, a macro lens is used in photography to reveal the tiny bits of a small object). But some architectural details are several feet, others are tens of feet long. Is the St. Louis Arch one big detail in itself?

Examples & directions to go:

  • Pick one detail, such as a railing, chimney, or gates (here’s a giant list if you need help): explore an area and take photos of only those elements.
  • Sit in front of an interesting building for 10 minutes and really look at all the elements. Use your camera, phone, or binoculars to zoom in.
  • Alternatively, find a building that you think is ugly or boring and see if you can find an interesting architectural detail.
  • Pick a house type from this list and go into a visual rabbit hole with that type. How does its location influence the building’s exterior or interior?
  • Detail a detail! Maybe the curvature or intersection of lines inspires you to write a story on people overcoming adversity.
  • Make up a story about the people that live in a house that you like (pick any house in your neighborhood or on Zillow or via Google Maps street view).

Mood board & inspiration: