A Multitude of Scaled Figures, Boundaries, and Vig nettes

“Sometimes that mountain you’ve been climbing is just a grain of sand”. Carrie Underwood demonstrates the use of scale in her recent musical smash hit “So Small” by relating a gigantic structure to a mere grain. In Architectural designs, we use scale to show the relation between a “scaled figure” to a piece of furniture, building, or space. Scale takes a measurement and constrains it to a reasonable distance to show how an object faces up to a person. A wonderful, yet sinful place that exaggerates this is the city of Las Vegas.

In the city of Las Vegas every building, hotel, resort created there is flashy, full of lights, high style, and entertaining. Las Vegas does this to keep the Unified theme of life and excitement. Merriam Webster notes that Unity is “a combination or ordering of parts in a literary or artistic production that constitutes a whole or promotes an undivided total effect.” Unity is a bunch of parts coming together to form a harmony. For example, a perfect example of Unity is a composition in music. The musical notes create phrases that tie together to make a long unified piece of work.


In the movie Fantasia, the Disney composer creates vivid imagery to classical and jazz music. When I listen to music my mind provokes incomplete images that show feelings and actions. The incompletion of an image is sometimes called a vignette. A Vignette shows the gist of an idea or scene. It’s narrow scoped yet still shows ample amount of information.

Boundaries show the perimeter of a site or location. Last semester we were asked to find the boundaries of the Gatewood Building on the UNCG campus. We started by walking out to the parking lot and circle around the building. Doing this gave us important information on how cars and pedestrians enter and exit the location. Boundaries can determine whether or not a specific building plan is appropriate for the site.

In design drafting, another way of showing high quality information is to show sections that inform the audience important dimensions. These sections combine the uses of scale and boundaries. Architects and designers often show section cuts, which are imaginary cut lines to show the interior of a type of material such as metal, wood, or brick. They can provide information on insulation and density.