Here are some of the services we provided:
- designed the new layout for their home, including the exterior aesthetic, interior flow, window placement, appropriate room sizes, and overall update on the house based on a more modern lifestyle
- drew plans and elevations to help the owners understand the new look and feel of the house; designed custom cabinets for the kitchen, dining room, living room, and bathrooms to fit all their storage and use needs
- helped the owners select exterior colors, interior colors, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, furniture, window coverings, and other design-related pieces
- drew details and compiled schedules to obtain a building permit
- helped the owners interview contractors, and negotiated the final bid
- acted as owner's representative by overseeing construction, assisting the owner with last minute changes, and reviewing the contractor's invoices
And this is just a partial list. We take care of each project as if it were our babies. We love every home as if it were our own. We treasure our projects and our clients. And we are proud of that.
Our local Multnomah Public Library lets patrons borrow a Kill A Watt device to use in their home. This device measures how many watts your fixture or appliance uses. You just plug the appliance into the device, and the device into an outlet. You can also measure phantom energy loads, which is the amount of energy an appliance uses even when it's technically turned off. You know that little red light that says your TV is off? Or the digital clock on your trusty microwave? The Kill A Watt can tell you how much energy those little things are using, too.
The best solution for saving phantom energy is to plug a cluster of appliances into a power strip, then switch off the power strip when those appliances are not in use. This is especially helpful around the media console - TV, stereo, DVD player, etc. - where it's a pain to turn everything off one at a time. I know those digital clocks are reset every time they are unplugged, but do you really need 13 synchronized digital clocks in your kitchen? I didn't think so.
The device has been around for a while, but what got me excited is the fact that my library lets me and everyone else check it out and use it. Not everyone needs to own a Kill A Watt, but I bet many people want to try it out for a few weeks around their home. Find out if your local library has this device or something similar available, and if not, it would be worth requesting it.
I just returned from Japan, where it has been unusually hot this summer. To escape the heat, my family and I stayed in Hakone for a few days. (It is higher in altitude than Tokyo but we found that it was equally hot in Hakone, too.) The area is known for its beautiful countryside and historic hot spring, but during this visit we also fell in love with the Hakone Open-Air Museum.
Most of the work is installed outdoors, where the sun and foliage play against the art. Many of the pieces were interactive, like the garden maze above.
Even though the art never seemed overcrowded, there were things to see at every turn. It felt like an outdoor version of Charles and Ray Eames' living room: things weren't on display, they were placed as a backdrop for living.
We could also make our own sculpture, using colorful foam pieces imagined by architect Mikiko Endo. (I love the fact that architects in Japan work on such a wide range of artistic projects.)
Almost everything in the museum was enjoyable for children. They seemed to understand what the art wanted them to do - to touch, to inquire, and to enjoy. The child in me really liked the woven sculpture by Toshiko Horiuchi, housed in a heavy timber pavilion by Tezuka Architects.
I feel refreshed and inspired after seeing art and architecture working together to create an environment that everyone can enjoy. I recommend you visit the museum next time you're in Japan.
The Oregon Daily Journal of Commerce called me to ask about my thoughts on the new Minority Evaluator Program. Portland City Council passed a resolution requiring a minority member to be part of the evaluation committee for certain publicly bid projects. In May, I had the opportunity to be a part of a selection committee. and will continue to volunteer my time in the program. For me, the benefits are multiple:
- I get to represent the Portland minority community by being an active part of the city's efforts for diversity
- I get to become a part of the minority business community, which is currently small and insular, but has earnest hopes of reaching a larger audience
- I get a better understanding of the RFP process
- I get an inside look at the City of Portland and PDC procurement and purchasing departments
- I have a venue to voice my opinion about the RFP proposal format and selection process, not just as a minority member, but also a woman business owner, a small business owner, and a young company hoping to win city contracts in the future
If you are interested in knowing more about the program, click on the links above to see how you might be able to get involved. I'll keep you posted on my thoughts on this new program as it progresses.
For those of you who in the Bay Area who are interested in all things city, there's still a week left to go see the 49 cities exhibit at the San Francisco Planning + Urban Research Association (SPUR), originally developed by Work AC for the Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York.
The exhibit presents to-scale, graphic plans and select criteria from 49 utopian cities, providing "remarkable insight into the contemporary metropolis and our efforts over time to make cities more controllable, monumental, organic, taller, denser, sparser or greener." Frankly, it was the most successful for me on a purely visual and graphic level; I loved seeing the scale and layout of each city in relationship to the others.
Jeremy Dubow: Portraits
Opening night reception on Friday June 25, 2010, 5pm – 8pm
On display through July, by appointment only
Portland, OR 97214
Phone: (503) 477-7075
Jeremy Dubow’s first series of 3-hour head studies are a meditation on the form and essence of the subject with an emphasis on decisive brush strokes. This show will feature 27 telling portraits, with many of the models present during the opening.
Jeremy Dubow was born in 1974 in San Francisco, California. His formal education included studies at the Florence Academy of Art in Florence, Italy. At the heart of his work, he combines both his love for classical art and contemporary realism. He has shown his work at numerous galleries, and has been featured in OPB’s Oregon Art Beat. In addition to his own body of work, he is commissioned to paint private portraits for individuals.