Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Meet our Members: Ian Salamanca

Meet our Members

an informal  series of questions 

Name: Ian Glenn Salamanca

Education Background: I initially started my education in writing (journalism/ literature), at the end of High School I moved my focus to screenwriting, editing, and film production. Frustration with the film industry led me to Business and Hospitality Management-which better suited my personality. It wasn't until an overcrowded semester that left me classless lead me to discovered Architecture.  The more I learned about it, the more I realized that Architecture was the culmination of the trades and traits I have already studied and possessed   Of each of the professions I experienced, creation was the motivating factor of my interest.  I may not have known it, but I have always been a designer.

Your Favorite Architect or Designer and why?
Jeanne Gang of Chicago.
 Her truly unique designs are awe-inspiring; often times requiring more than a double-take.  Her firm's  methods of construction are also masterfully orchestrated, the construction projects usually yield more recycled materials than waste.  Her programs are so intelligent they practically become one with nature; one in particular featured a screen designed in such a way to drastically reduce the number of endangered bird deaths, caused by flying into glass.  The sheer amount of information she and her design firm collect for their projects is impressive. That previously mentioned project also was built in a specific physical location that intentionally DIDN'T disrupt the mating habits of said local fauna. It was that attention to her surroundings that sets her design apart. It's that love and respect for our natural world that makes her an inspiration to me as a future Architect.

What is your Favorite Building Material?
Krazy Glue.
In this instance i'm speaking solely about model making, since that's the area in which I've had the most practice. Besides it's propensity towards frustration (especially when one bonds with their project) it is the best all around adhesive money can buy.  When I buy them, I go to the 99cent store and buy as many as they have (I swear they glare at me on my way out) and I can still stay on budget.  It's second purpose (as you will later learn about me, if something is useful it is multi purposed) is as a REALLY effective first aid for cuts. I can't tell you how many times I had been a flurry of progress when suddenly my skin, seperated by my Xacto, put a halt to my work. An recently opened wound can set you back hours on your work; instead open a brand new tube, apply and let sit until dry, you'll be back in minutes AND you'll be on your way to healing.

*Please note that although it is sterile, that only applies to unopened containers; also since it wasn't specifically designed for medical use it is not a substitute for the real thing...Just useful in a pinch.
For more info the stuff, check out this article.

What are your 3 favorite websites to learn something new? (or at least the one's right now) 

Specifically the THEMES page; they amass a series of talks by something more more intelligent than the traditional categories.  (I don't think I really have to write this next line.) If you have never heard of TED talks than you are missing out on the cerebral goldmine of our decade.  (Seriously, if you haven't- stop reading this and go explore it.)
I try to replace my television watching habits with this; When i'm having a bite to eat, or if I've watched all of my recordings; rather than channel surfing and tuning in and tuning out, I am engaged.

Lifehacker is: part DIY, part humor blog, part techno-geeky, part user-friendly downloadables port. They update new articles on the half hour meaning a nearly limitless supply of "huh, I didn't know that..." or "Woah! Problem solved!" or simply "Ah-ha!" moments.  At the end of each article you'll find a series of similar posts which lead to either A) feelings of joy from all the new things learned; or B) feelings of dread from noticing how many hours have gone by... *Use with caution!

If I could dispel one myth about Google+ it would be that it is anything like Facebook.  If i'm being unbiased, it's not that one is even better than the other. It's about what you are looking for. The collaborative effect of the Google+ lets people connect to anyone regardless of added/non-added and with regards to privacy.  One can simply throw out a question, into the sea of circles and find contact.  With integrated tagging, linking, and analytics, every post becomes a unique commodity that carries your signature.  With Hangouts, we can see whole new sides of our world we have never, or may never see. The power of that can be explained in this touching video about Virtual Photo Walks.  For me, this is the fastest, easiest, and most enjoyable way of discovering the world.

What do you want to do for Los Angeles?
This wasn't an easy question as there are so many technologies and concepts that I feel would propel our city to both health and prosperity.  Though since I am still young in my academic career I am not yet capable of achieving this on my own.  So for now I would have to say I want to see a greener Los Angeles; not green as in LEED certified or the likes (Don't get me wrong, i'd love to see that!). What I mean specifically is a more lush flora presence. Broken lots to become gardens, abandoned buildings to become Photovoltaic public spaces, to have trees capable of bringing a sense shade to this concrete metropolis. I would like to see a lush LA.

What do you want to do for the World?
I want to create a world where there are fewer roads and efficient public transit. A world where the spaces between buildings aren't crammed with vehicles, but with community paths or housing.  It is sprawl that increases carbon footprints, and it is density that will bring us together (no pun intended.) Jeanne Gang is the only Architect i've ever heard to say "Density is a good thing" but I absolutely believe it; not to mention allow Earth to reclaim much of it's natural land. I don't feel we need to rely on cars as much as we are led to believe; and with advancement of 3D printing technology much of the shipping and manufacturing that damage our environment can be eliminated.  It's a long shot, to imagine that world seems impossible; though I am comforted with the thought that just a century ago, to imagine this world was mindblowing. I place my wager in favor of Nature.

“Constant development is the law of life, and a man who always tries to maintain his dogmas in order to appear consistent drives himself into a false position”
-Mahatma Gandhi

Ian Salamanca is a member and webmaster of the LATTC Sustainability Club.

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