20K Ophelia’s Home

Howdy from Newbern!

A series of student Polaroids with title "Meet the Third Years"

1 HOWDY

  • Mediocre Superpower: ability to find other people’s keys, but never their own
  • Born in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
  • Their lack of wisdom teeth is no indication of their lack of wisdom
  • Enjoys microwavable Mac n’ Cheese (to the rest of the house’s dismay)
  • On a free day, they enjoy doing chores, jamming to heavy metal, and planning schemes
  • May or may not own all the Lego pieces in the land
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2 BYE

  • Mediocre Superpower: being able to sleep through 50 alarms
  • Lived in Israel for a year as a baby
  • Continues to taunt the house with unfulfilled promises of Oreo Pie
  • Embarrassed of their Hufflepuffness
  • Their right ear is higher than the left one
  • Hates ‘Get-to-Know-You’ questionnaires
  • Believes the greatest cereal of all time is Lucky Charms
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3 GRAVITAS

  • Mediocre Superpower: be able to understand animals (only if they need something)
  • Is a cheesy person
  • Born and Raised in Houston
  • Loves spicy food
  • Only Ravenclaw of the house (smarticle particle)
  • Believes that people who close the bathroom door when they are done and leave everyone to wonder whether it is occupied or not should reevaluate.
  • Thinks the ‘Get-to-Know-You’ questionnaire made by the blog team is perfect (aaaaaaawww)
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4 MILK JAR

  • Mediocre Superpower: ability to know a penny’s life story when touched
  • Always eating popcorn before meals (never finishes their plate smh)
  • Speaks fluent Itali-English
  • Hides food from everyone else in the house and will eat your food if left unattended
  • Cheeseball Shark/ partial merperson
  • Undying love for Oreos and still waiting on the promised Oreo Pie
  • DeLiang’s least favorite actress
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5 RUN?

  • Mediocre Superpower: every time they reach into their pocket, they will find a single, random tree nut
  • The only Gryffindor of the house
  • Has secret ancient knowledge of strawberry juice
  • On a free day, they enjoy messing with Houdini (the famous escape artist not their dog)
  • Wants to learn VEX
  • Was caught off guard by their immense love of Twilight
  • Scared of photos
  • Unnaturally good at handstands
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6 READING OVEN

  • Mediocre Superpower: ability to stop time but only to procrastinate
  • Enjoys eating pie
  • Has visited a Glass Bridge (and it was beautiful)
  • Believes dust is the single worst menace to society
  • Loves road trips
  • Has more drill bits than any one person could ever need
  • Can fit a family of four in their giant tool belt
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7 TUMMPLE

  • Mediocre Superpower: the ability to speak any language but only to talk to people about their dogs
  • Is a very proud Hufflepuff
  • Their pinky toes don’t reach the ground
  • Lost the spelling bee in 3rd grade because ‘vacuum’ has 2 u’s
  • Parmesan cheese addict
  • Visited Hobbiton, New Zealand (where they should be because they are a hobbit)
  • Aims to imprison all Tummples
  • Inventor of Little Monsters TM, Newbern’s critically acclaimed board game

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A Responsible Return to Rural Studio

3rd years sit masked in the fabrication pavilion before eating lunch

The 3rd-year students are back in Newbern! Find out what they’re planning this semester in their first blog post here!

Out of Site

This week 3rd-years were introduced to two of their other courses taken at Rural Studio: Shop with Stephen Long and History with Dick Hudgens. While traditionally the Shop class focuses on a long-term project centered on the study and construction of a famous chair, this year students will be focusing on three smaller projects that can all be done during shop time. This will allow students to study wood construction more broadly as well as design some of the projects they are working on.

Dick Hudgens introduced his course with a bang as students walked around downtown Newbern making sketches of adjacent buildings and starting to learn some on-site drawing techniques. Similar to Long’s course adjustments, Hudgens has also adjusted the course syllabus to allow for more social distancing and safe meetings. As a result, all students drive their own cars to different historical sites and focus has been shifted from watercolor to more hand-drawing techniques.

20K Ophelia’s Home

Despite a rainy start to the semester, 3rd-years were able to get back onto 20K Ophelia’s Home project site mid-week on the first working week of the semester. Due to COVID-19 regulations in Spring 2020, progress on-site was sadly halted. However, these returning students and faculty have been eager to continue to work on this Rural Studio project. During the first few days on-site, 3rd-years were able to clean up the site and sort through materials in order to catalog how much material had been lost to weathering. 

With a new clean site, 3rd-years began prepping for the next week’s of work by building an on-site pin-up board as well as covering any exposed materials in preparation for another weekend of rain. Neither the rain nor the COVID-19 guidelines can dampen the spirits of the eager 3rd-years as they start the semester full of excitement and anticipation.

Students and instructors pose on site after a long day of work

Fabrication Pavilion

During what students and faculty loving refer to as “neck-down week,” a group of 3rd-years spent the week cleaning the fabrication pavilion and the yard in front of Morrisette House. While cleaning might not seem like the most glamorous task, it was a necessary task. The satisfaction that came with seeing a clean, beautiful pavilion was well worth the work. With an organized campus, the students are ready to start building.

From One Home to Another

Due to Covid-19 pandemic the 3rd-years shifted their project from building 20K Ophelia’s Home to an online exploration of 20K Turner’s Home. Before the 3rd-years left Rural Studio to head back home, they were able to finish framing and sheathing all of Ophelia’s Home walls.

After a triumphal day of putting all the walls up, the 3rd-years headed off to Spring Break! Unfortunately, once the 3rd-years found out the were unable to come back to Rural Studio, the wall had to be taken down and covered by a tarp for protection until the site is reopened.

The 3rd-years began their experimentation with how 20K Turner’s Home could be modified and were challenged to make changes that included Turner’s Home in the product line. The program included the ability to add 300 to 400 square feet to the original home, change the form, reorganize internal space in order to accomplish, and add the quarter bedroom concept from Ophelia’s Home. The 3rd-years started off by reading the book designed by the original Turner’s student team and began evaluating the plan to make changes. Soon after, they adapted sections, elevations, wall sections, and floor framing to their designs. Once doing these, a series of perspectives and diagrams were created to explain the new design. Everything was compiled into a final presentation and reviewed with a number of the Rural Studio faculty.

Being fortunate enough to spend the time at Rural Studio that we did, all 12 of us were certainly heartbroken to leave so early. With high hopes of getting our long list of tasks done after spring break, it was sad to hang up our boots and open up our laptops. This is not to disregard the fact that we, along with everyone in Newbern that we know of, are all healthy and safe. It can be easy to overlook in this time where we sit inside and are told to wait, having to see each other now only as a thumbnail. We were lucky enough to make it halfway through the semester and reaching the point of putting up her walls, and we have learned so much along the way.

We hope that their work is useful for the future of Rural Studio and will be constructed for Ophelia to enjoy.

Wow look at these fine folks of 3rd-years! Sad to see them go, and sooner than expected, but now their train rides on to a new path. Hope to see some faces back in Hale County for their 5th year. Always remember folks, be serious, but be silly!

3rd-Year’s Final Watercolors

Check out 3rd-year history class’s beautiful elevations and details of Gaineswood in Demopolis, Alabama, the Pollen Mansion in Montgomery, Alabama, and the Perry County Court House in Marion, Alabama. These buildings were meticulously hand-drafted and water-colored all semester long.

A Study of Magnolia Grove

This week, 3rd-years looked at Magnolia Grove, a plantation home built in 1840 in Greensboro, Alabama. As shown in the following watercolor investigations, professor Dick Hudgens asked his students to focus on the house’s detached kitchen and servants’ quarters. These drawings are the semester’s last round of quick watercolor practice. Stay tuned for next week’s post, which reveals the student’s final drafted watercolors–they’ve been working on these beauties all semester!