Gambatte: A Monument to Human Perserverance

With this project, Karen and I wanted to build a monument commemorating human perseverance, especially the Japanese people's response to the earthquake and tsunami of 2011. Therefore, this monument is really for the people of Japan. It is located on the Ishinomaki Bay, where the epicenter of the earthquake is located. We looked at their beliefs, such as Shinto and Buddhism, as well as their overall aesthetics to create this piece. Their aesthetic is very minimal and symmetrical and our form aims to reflect that. At first, we wanted to use natural materials but decided on a form and material that is man made, to reflect the idea that humans overcame nature. The structure is meant for water to flow underneath so that when visitors stand on the platform on top, they feel like they are overcoming nature and they can feel empowered.


Monument to Human Perserverance

So it's been a while since we've been working on this. But since brainstorming went, Karen and me decided to work with the Japanese earthquake and tsunami of 2011.

Our inspiration board reflected the idea of us wanting to work with the Japanese culture and incorporating their aesthetic with our monument. We also wanted to work with natural elements, incorporate zen gardens, Buddhism and Shintoism ideals, and mazes with a lot of water. We floated around a bit and then sketched a ton (which Karen has all the drawings and perhaps has uploaded to her blog). So from there and multiple sketches, we came up with the form. It's a ramp with an overlooking deck into the sea (to go off the idea of perseverance and overcoming the disaster). Below are some images of our monument in progress.

For now, we are working to improve the form and I'll update with that later (or when I remember to).


Monument Ideas

Many of these were/are common things people already know about so I'll skip basic research on them. If you need more information, Wiki has great articles on them.

1. Japan 2011 tsunami/earthquake
2. Haiti 2010 earthquake
3. Bosnian War (focus on women and how they were treated)
  • Stories from women
  • There are existing monuments but they focus on the war itself and victims in a larger sense, not focused on something small.
4. Wildfires
  • Show impact it has had on residents and environment
  • It doesn't seem like there have been any monuments honoring victims/towns or firefighters
5. Hena


Career Goals and Strategy

What do I want to do with my life? I'm not sure. I thought I wanted to do this and that, and I still do, but there's so many options!

I want to work somewhere in interactive media. Something digital. Something everyone would use. Mainly app design. I really enjoy making apps, either for tablets or phones. I'm not great with websites since that is such a big space to design for, but I can do small screens. I like creating things that have a logical process to it so maybe that's why I enjoy creating experiences because I get to speculate how users will interact with what I have created.

I want to work at a corporation or a big company. I want my own cubicle (as weird and as different as that sounds). I want to work at a place where there is huge collaborative work but also room to decide what you want to do. I don't want to work at a small firm or studio. I feel like that would be a lot of stress, which is something I don't handle very well.

I also love doing motion pieces, like motion graphics. There is this thing about that I just love. Maybe it's the technical aspect of it. Even if you have this great idea, it doesn't mean that you can translate it completely. That's something motion graphics have provided me, an outlet of these ideas. I love that motion adds another lay to a 2d image. With that said, I like flash and action scripting, which leads to coding and all these other technical knowledge, which I'm fascinated by.

Outside of design, I would like to dabble in wedding planning or something with architecture. If I had to choose, I would probably take the wedding planning route after I find a stable job in a design company. I feel like wedding planning and design goes hand in hand with one other. I also feel like what we have studied for the past 3 years can be applied to other "design" fields besides just graphic design. I could be designing weddings for one, or houses, or interior design. The list can go on and on.

So my path/goals right now is either do design at a company or do wedding planning at some company. I want to work at a large corporate company (on anything is fine), in a multimedia, interactive, experience....field. How do I get there though? I need to be accepted into companies that work on those things. Technology based companies would be great, like Garmin or Sprint. Even working freelance or finding a lesser known tech place would be fine too. Interning at a heavy tech place would be a good first step. I'm really passionate bout weddings too so I need to search for those places as well.

I interned at Gear for Sports over last summer and really enjoyed that. It's kind of been the job I want. It's a 9 to 5 job with a cubicle and a great design team. There isn't much creativity involved but you're basically designing a shirt to get screen printed, which involves a lot of technical stuff like set up of a file and coloring and it has to go through all these steps to even get to the floor to print. It was just really really cool work and I wouldn't mind doing it for a career.

Basic summary? Gotta test the waters and find places that fit me first, dabble in that area, see how I fit into it, and go from there.