March 2

Reorganizing my research:
I decided I needed to reorganize what I would decide to consider in my design as I do have a limited time and this theme is very broad. I don't regret choosing it but I do realize I need more time to fully understand the factors of the entire problem, as with most problems.

Consider only in written form (for time's sake):
-The possibility of eating insects.
-Bees, and their necessity for pollinating which therefore makes flowers necessary.
-The culture of food in different places.
-The production of alcohol.
-The education of people in order for them to farm successfully.
-The infrastructure needed to make large scale urban farming possible. For examples, see the book Farming Cuba (seed banks, veterinarians, etc.)
-The study of what types of plants would grow successfully in London.
-The philosophy behind why people eat what they eat.
-The study of why western cultures over consume. Is it about availability? Taste? Is it psychological; a comfort in the face of other larger problems?
-The political aspect of farming and how farming is really about power and control over systems that affect our life. It is people taking into their own hand their food production, giving them control over quality and quantity and whether the government will support or hinder them.

To consider (for idea development):
-A portable greenhouse, think Shigeru Ban style, easy to assemble.
-The fact that soil creates a large carbon sink leading to carbon sequestration.

Things to keep in mind:
-Net zero farms that work based on clean energy production and latching onto existing infrastructure to meet its needs. For example, the farm can use the food waste from households to create compost, grey water that is purified for irrigation, etc.
-How animals (including fish) fit into the design. Look into different types of farming (see Cuba study).
-Consider a organic, diverse (polyculture), integrated and low-input system.
-How to make farming attractive to the average person. Perhaps it can become a job the same as working at a fast food restaurant.
-The tools required for labour intensive farming and how the will be made and provided to the farmers.
-Irrigation and sun. The two basic needs. Study these in my chosen site.
-How will the design be resilient in the long term to climate change?
-How will the soil quality be maintained? (Compost).

Major pieces of research left to look at:
-Biointensive gardening.
1. Alan Chadwick.
2. John Jeavons, how to grow more vegetables in less land than you imagined.
-Natural farming.
1. Mansanoba Fukuoka, one-straw revolution: introduction to natural farming.
2. Mansanoba Fukuoka, natural way of farming: theory and practise of green philosophy.
2. Diane and Robert Gilman, greening the desert: an interview with Mansanoba.

March 4

Progress Tutorial with Alaistair:
-It is okay to continue working and drawing and extracting from very conceptual models, even if I don't understand how it will play a part in the final proposal. As in, "I like this but I don't know what it is right now." Just be sure to explain how I feel about it and why in my reflection.
-Look at the different types of housing in London (ex. Flats, apartments, estates, etc.) and how my proposal can be adapted with these existing structures.
-Consider the systems the need to be put in place. If the time restraints are too much, consider them in written form, similar to a manifesto.
-Make sure your invention is sensible and adaptable to existing buildings and infrastructure.
-I could consider designing a residential space with a farming plot in mind. But if time restrains, again, mention this in written form for future consideration, while designing something that can be put to use now.

Overall, I felt a lot calmer after this tutorial because I was able to talk about my design and figure out what direction it's heading in. Alaistair also helped me figure out what I should consider when designing and what factors I should 'eliminate' or address in written form. I was initially wondering whether including animals would be too much in the time given but we considered the importance of an integrated system, I realized they're necessary to consider for a more successful design. 


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