It has been three months since my 3rd year of architecture school started, and even though pandemic has made my (online) lectures less hectic, I realized how much our seniors must have judged all of us first years back in 2018 when we used to say we have so much work to do.
Entering 1st year of architecture school is an exciting experience. The 1st day of 1st year is just as awkward as sudden questions by relatives asking for advice on renovating their houses. There was a time when we as children knew tracing meant using the tracing paper to copy drawings, and then you enter Architecture school. Here people are using all these varieties of ideas for tracing, glass tracing, GT as we all call it, using windows being the most famous method and easiest method to get caught by the faculty.
We get bombarded with all these high vocabulary words we would never have heard before. With a lot of them having meanings, you did not even assume they had. These words, many times, sound so similar to the everyday words they all lead to a great misunderstanding, but we have our faculty and seniors to help us understand them.
I can recall an incident during our first year; we had just got done with our semester one design, and our faculty had told us to start researching on projects related to ‘chaos’ before leaving the studio. They had told us to try looking for some necessary information so that we could be prepared with doubts and ideas for the upcoming design studio and thus did not go into any details. For almost a week, we were confused about what kind of projects we were supposed to look for and what a chaotic type of design is. Later during an elective studio, our seniors, who were casually passing by, came to look at our work. That was when they heard us talking about being confused about the design topic and corrected that the word is supposed to be ‘kiosk.’ It was such a stupid movement, how we were so confused all the time, did not get the doubt cleared from our faculty thinking we were new enough not to know these designs aspects.
Submitting massive necessary submissions, then finding an empty class and taking a nap becomes a usual scenario for us. We think of bunking a lecture to go out with your friends, but we as architecture students have bunked more classes for completing submissions than for going out. However, it is not always for completing submissions; many times, the reason is that we could not finish the assignment.
Once, we as a whole class bunked an Architecture Design Studio, not a single soul present. We were so sure that we would be facing the consequences in the next lecture, but instead, our faculty was impressed and proud of us for showing such a unity. Eventually, we all get used to bunking classes without hesitation.
There have been days when we did not understand what rendering meant for a design presentation and would try out all possible colors because the faculty advised trying color rendering. However, then get criticized for using more colors in the jury folio.
We start our first year making as many weird shapes as possible, and as we progress through the years, we realize that is not what architecture is all about and that there is a lot more to explore. We all have gone through the phase where our design concepts were waves or trees or whatever we could imagine. We all have realized what chaos it was, but we have also been successful in getting this chaos cleared as we progressed in this life of studying Architecture.
We all have been annoyed by people continually addressing us as ‘she/he’ is a future ‘Architecture’. Our friends from other fields ask us what we study in Architecture school, but do not understand anything when we mention subject names. However, they judged us when we used the simple relative words, especially after we mentioned learning the working of sewage systems in that confusion, but that does not matter because we know what we learn. We know we enjoy being an architecture student even though it comes with a tone of chaos in our life.
Kids have judged us for all those times they saw us caring t – scales and scrolls while traveling to college. People had looked at us as if we had some stolen precious gems in our hands when we were taking all those models and folio folders for our juries.
Our faculty has brought us back to the ground from big expectations, to get prepared for first getting interior projects instead of all the complex structures we were dreaming of getting us our first design project after graduation. The moment we step into architecture college; the struggle starts.
Nevertheless, this life as an architecture student does give us some great and best moments of your life. Though I still have a long way to go, looking back to the past two years and thinking about the progress me and my batchmates have made has been encouraging and gives me hope. It is a challenging path, but I know we all will achieve our dreams.