Urban Diary #3 | UW Quad | U District

It may seem weird to go from zero to 3, but hey, this is where we are right now. Zooming right along on a Saturday night… doing homework. I’m not complaining, though! Well, I was, but I acknowledge it could be worse. It’s all relative. My homework happens to be fun as heck. So fun I couldn’t help but share.

It’s for my History of Landscape Architecture Class. We’re looking at the shape and the language of spaces in all forms from ancient caves to modern cities. It’s all really fascinating, especially because our professor is particularly passionate about her field. Not only does she teach, but she also works at an architectural firm part-time.

That said, it is still history. There’s a lot of reading and lot of lecture. And then there’s the Urban Diary assignments. We’re responsible for visiting a new location every week, to document that space (in photo or video) and write a paragraph or so relating the space to our themes and ideas from our weekly readings.

This week we learned about paradise gardens and chahar baghs. It intrigues me that paradise is traditionally interpreted as a closed garden, split in four. And the chahar bagh reveals in early landscape architects an affinity with symmetry which may be reflective of ourselves; being that we humans have bilateral symmetry.

We get to choose from a few locations each week and the image above is our very own Quad spied from the interdisciplinary visual arts studio on the rainiest rainy day.


Later, Jared and I wandered the U-district. Umbrellas and dSLRs, can you imagine? I managed to get a few shots that also seem worthy of the title Urban Diary before water droplets took over my lens. Just outside the Simply Mac store, there’s this killer mural and we decided to get close. It was miserably raining, thick droplets—not at all like our usual Seattle mist, still Jared and I had so much fun! He’s a professional photographer so I love to glean as much knowledge from him as I can.


What do you think of landscape architecture? I love looking at beautifully curated spaces, but I also understand the argument that a great landscape is one that is so perfect you don’t even think about it.


Are you inspired by any lovely landscapes lately? Tell me all about it. Down there. Yeah, just scroll and comment. Mmhm. Extra points if you add a picture. 🙂

Brianna Wray Signature

Author: Brianna Wray

I'm an artist in Seattle just living the dream.


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