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Designing Architectural Technology with Nature

By Maria Lorena Lehman — Get more articles like this sent to your email HERE.

Image Credit: © GreenLiving | Dreamstimes

Sometimes there is a fine line between technology and nature. That line can be as obvious as a window pane or as slight as an accent of green picked out in a textile pattern. There are many ways to integrate nature into an architectural design. For example, be conscious of your choices when selecting features like color and texture. After all, the human senses respond to certain color and texture palettes. 

Mirroring nature in just the right places can make architectural environments more healing. Did you know that patients in rooms with window views of trees reported healing with less pain medication and in reduced time? Nature, in all its dynamic form should serve to inspire and make the architectural space healthy. Whether it be an abstract architectural interpretation or a touch of the outdoors inside, nature with architecture is a powerful union – just don’t forget to make it a conscious and positive one.

Additionally, architectural technology can be used to extract beauty from nature and represent it in unique ways. Have you ever seen a digital media wall of nature? Have you ever walked on a floor that looked like water? Sometimes digital media technology can push you to experience nature in a whole new way. Don’t be afraid to experiment when designing with augmented reality – perhaps designing nature with interactive architectural technologies will make nature and architecture better than the sum of their parts.

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Maria: I came across your website through a reference in today's Architect Weekly ezine and am delighted I did. I'll bookmark your site and check back often. I read the first article and then the second and thirty minutes later realized how much time had passed. I've been practicing for thirty years and have always missed the stimulation of academia. I find each of your brief dissertations sort of like a day in design studio. Thanks for the inspiration.

Ron Ward
AI Group Design
I am excited to see you touch a vein of values in architecture, I have been chasing myself for years. Your depth of involvement in these very deep subjects is really beautiful and passionately dealt with and well written. Sound, color and value, shape, texture, scale, smell.... all definitive measures of the spaces we should be alert to. [...] I will savor the rest of your investigation of sensuality in architecture. I'm Glad I found you.

Dennis McLaughlin
McLaughlin Architect
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Maria Lorena Lehman is a multi award-winning visionary author, designer, and educator from the United States. Maria holds a Bachelor of Architecture with Honors from Virginia Tech and a Master in Design with Distinction from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. CLICK HERE to learn more.

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