From KUL to AKL to AOR to SGN

CC#6: A Love-Hate Relationship

Have you ever loved and hated something or somebody at the same time? Do you develop a love hate relationship with your best friend, your kids or your wife? Or how about some guilty pleasures like taking a cigarette? and drinking? : ) huh... I believe most of us do. This evening i'm going to share with you the one thing that i love so much and hate as much at the same time.


Ladies and gentlemen,

Do you know why i chose architecture? It is because Architect is named the most attractive male profession in the world. Don't believe me? You can google it.

Anyway, that was not the main reason. When i was a teenager i love visual arts. I enjoy sketching and painting. At the same time, i performed well in my science and language subjects. I told my parents, i want to be an artist. My mom said No! No! No! My dear boy. Trust me, you don't want to be an artist. You have good results. You can be a doctor, a lawyer or even an astronaut. So in order to not disappoint my parents. I chose architecture. I wanted to be an Architect.

I thought, architecture is the perfect combination of art and science. It is the art of designing and constructing buildings. Hmm.... After working for 3 years. I seriously doubt that.

Fellow members and guests,

Let me guide you to see architecture from another perspective, i.e from a perspective of an architecture student.
Architecture is better known as Archi-torture in the universities. My university life as an architecture student was a nightmare. What was your longest hours of staying awake? I clocked my personal best of 36 hours. Solid! You know what? If i say this in front of a bunch of architects. One of will jump out and say, Hey i did 72 hours! And yes this might sound funny and stupid to you but this is really what an architecture student has to go through.

You see. Art is very subjective and sometime very personal. Architectural design too is the same. There is no best design. Your job is never done until the time is up. So, very often, when we were given a design project, we had to work to the very last minute. Burning the midnight oil was never enough. Because we would work from sunrise to sunset and then continue to sunrise.

Because of architecture, I picked up the habit of drinking coffee. I had my breakfast, lunch and dinner 3-in-1. I mastered the skill of sleeping in sitting position, with my head on the drafting table. I didn't shower for 2 days. I accidentally cut my fingers. I slept at 4am and woke up at 8am to attend a lecture and ended up sleeping throughout the lecture.

And the best of all, i lost 8 kilograms. :)

Despite all the hardships, I don't know why? I somehow survived.

As a designer, nothing is more happy then seeing your ideas turn into a series of presentation boards that communicate, that can tell the story of your design. From concepts and sketches, they slowly take form and transform into 3d models and rendered graphics. You know that you have accomplished something after all the sleepless nights.

Just when you thought my job is done and i can go back to my hostel and sleep. Hold on! Wait, wait wait. The job is not done. We still have a presentation to go through. In architecture, we call is a crit session. The is the time that your work is open for assessment and criticism. Many a time, you will be treated with all the harsh comments.

My lecturer once told me, Do you know why you got C? Because nothing is perfect. A is for God, B is me, your teacher. and C? That is for you!
Imagine that is what you get after not sleeping for two days.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Because of Architecture, i learned that in life, 1+1 is not always equal 2. Sometimes, you may get more than 2 if you are lucky. It taught me to be okay when 1+1=1/2. You just need to hit harder next time.
But there is one thing i know for sure. 0+0 is always 0. No pain, no gain.


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