Sunday, October 20, 2013

Coronado Club Room & Boathouse

Oooh, that roof! East elevation, overlooking the beach and Glorietta Bay. Photo ©Darren Bradley
This community center was commissioned by the city of Coronado, who asked local architects Hanna Gabriel Wells to provide a space to provide storage for non-motorized watercraft and access to San Diego Bay, and could also host special events and after-school programs. They nailed it. It won an Orchid for the Architecture category of this year's annual Orchids & Onion Awards by the San Diego Architectural Foundation.  

Sunday, October 13, 2013

San Diego gets a real airport, too!

It's not easy making a glass atrium appear bright and light-filled when outside it's dark and grey... Photo ©Darren Bradley
I recently shot San Diego's new airport terminal as part of the annual San Diego Architectural Foundation Orchids & Onions awards. The project is called "The Green Build at Terminal 2". It's part of a multi-million dollar expansion of our dinky airport to bring it up to modern standards, to account for both the draconian security measures that are now the norm at any airport, and to simultaneously try to bring a bit more comfort and humanity to the place by providing fewer chain restaurants and more local fare. I had a short window of about an hour to photograph this place. Naturally, it turned out to be a really crappy, dull, grey day with terrible light. So it was a challenge, to say the least. 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

A first look at San Diego's new Central Library

San Diego Central Library
I wasn't sure that I liked the library at first. This is what it looked like while still under construction. I loved the drama of the dome and the overall design, but It seemed like there was really just too much going on. After touring and seeing it up close, I'm a convert. It's brilliant. Photo ©Darren Bradley
San Diego has long always been a big city with a small town mentality - but not in a good way. I'm not sure whether it's the fact that much of our population is transitory (many get transferred elsewhere after a few years, and so aren't invested in the community for the long-term) or because we have a lot of conservatives who aren't interested in seeing tax dollars spent on large infrastructure projects. Whatever the reason, our public buildings just aren't at all what you would expect to see for a major metropolitan area with a population of over 3 million. But that's finally starting to change... 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

A Swimming Pool in Surry Hills

If you zoom in, you can see that lifeguard over there is already giving me the eye. He was on his way over to figure out if I was some kind of pervert and - regardless of the answer, politely but firmly tell me to stop taking photos. Apparently, people are sensitive about other people with cameras at a pool. Who knew? Photo ©Darren Bradley
While in Sydney, I visited the new pool at Prince Alfred Park in Surry Hills. It's a great new project by the firm of Neeson Murcutt Architects. The pool and the park existed already, but they were run down and in need of some love. 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Seidler Offices & Apartments

Seidler Offices & Apartments
Front entry of the Seidler Offices & Apartments. Harry loved his curves. Photo ©Darren Bradley
I've already talked about Harry Seidler a few times on this blog. I even wrote an article about the house he built for his parents shortly after immigrating to Australia.  After that first, groundbreaking project, he went on to have a brilliant international career. I realized I have enough photos of some of his other projects to put up another article or two. 

Canberra, or "The World's Largest University Campus"

The Shine Dome
Locals refer to this building as "The Martian Embassy", due to its unusual form
and the fact that Canberra is the Nation's Capital and where all the embassies are located. Photo ©Darren Bradley
Tell an Australian that you're going to Canberra and they usually chuckle and shake their heads in pity - especially if they're from Melbourne or Sydney. You see, Canberra has a reputation as sleepy town where nothing much of interest ever happens, and there's nothing to do or see. Knowing this, I arranged to spend as little time there as possible. That was a mistake. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

A Lab with a View

Gould Evans teamed up with local firm Delawie Architects for this new project on the cliffs overlooking La Jolla. Photo ©Darren Bradley.
Last night was the annual Orchids & Onions event, put on the the San Diego Architectural Foundation. One of the standouts and Orchid winners was this project, above. I've been a volunteer for this organization for several years now, photographing many of the winning projects. I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to shoot this one.