What is Form?


At the beginning of our seminar with Eve we had to finish off our maps that we started last week. As well as mapping out the area we also took some pictures of the area which we printed out and stuck down onto what we had drawn. This gave a view of how we interpreted the area and also gave it a more realistic and visual feeling. Once everyone had done this we had to show our maps to the group to the side of us and explain why we decided to map in this way and we spoke of how this activity helped us understand space in new ways and on new levels. We then got to walk around the room to look at everyone else’s maps, it was interesting to see how everyone had inferred the task and gone about completing it.


Our finished map, complete with images

After this was completed we started this week’s topic – What is Form? – we spoke of what we see form as and how it can be interpreted in different ways. We looked at the quote ‘Form is constructed from geometry and proportion’ (Sully, 2012) and this made us consider how everything we look at and see is just made up of shapes and depending how they are ordered causes them to have various appearances.

This theory shows how simple the forms of things are but when first looking at them they seem much more complex. This links with Le Corbusier’s anthropometric scale of proportions which takes this simplicity of form and links it with the average human size. This understanding of shape and scale aids designers to create effective geometric designs.


Le Corbusier’s Modulor Man – the anthropometric scale of proportions

We also spoke of how just changing one shape to another can create a huge difference in the feeling of a space. Triangles for example create a rather angular and coarse view, however, if you instead used a circular shape it would cause a much smoother and composed feeling of the area.

Eve advised us to observe all the geometry featured in the places we go and then we can understand even further how everywhere varies in terms of geometry and so this creates different effects.

This seminar helped me see how something so simple as shapes can change something so largely and form is very important when it comes to how a space is experienced.


Le Corbusier, (1965), Modulor Man [ONLINE]. Available at: https://wharferj.wordpress.com/2010/12/12/le-corbusiers-modulor-man/ [Accessed 18 November 15].

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