Creative Commons – Watch your license

The Creative Commons portion of the image website Flickr is a terrific place to find images, and also participate in the sharing of these images. This first page shows you the various types of licenses and attributions under which photographers allow their images to be used.

If you are looking for images to illustrate a paper or blog, go to and click on the word ‘search’ in the upper right hand corner of the webpage. This takes you to a new search page.  You will see a drop-down list on the left side of the search field. Click on that and, from the menu, choose The Commons, then type in a key word for flickr to search on.

This picture came from the commons portion of Flickr.

You can download the picture to your desktop, but please pay attention to the licensing and copyright tags on the picture page.

Great Image and Research website

ArchNet is a member-driven website that contains a digital library of images that deal with architecture and urban planning in a very easily searchable database. There are often plans, sections and elevations to accompany the general views of the buildings. It also allows participation and collaboration amongst members, and is free to join.

I have found that there is strong documentation of projects and the search feature is quite easy to use.

Access to the Digital Library is found through a link on the left hand side, and that is also where the search feature is located. Clicking on the search feature and typing in housing gets me to projects in Africa and Iran, places that are less well documented in this School’s collection.

The Images link within the Digital Library gets me to a list of architecture by Collection, or by Country, Building Type or Building Style. They also include Gardens and Urban Design and Development. And you can download the images.

My favorite website for the week:

New Deal Utopias

Images of New Deal Utopias, including Greenbelt MD, just down the road from College Park, are featured on this New York Times Blog.

A brief History of Greenbelt as told by guest blogger, Lucinda Philumalee.

As a historic preservation student at the University of Maryland, the nearby city of Greenbelt, Maryland is a local treasure.  Located just outside the Capital Beltway, Greenbelt is home to professors and students alike.  It serves as an example of early-to-mid 1900s cutting edge urban design.

The history of Greenbelt predates its actual establishment.  In response to the Great Depression, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt instituted the Emergency Relief Appropriations Act of 1935.  This provided five billion dollars in funding for public works projects, which supported the Resettlement Administration of 1935.  The Resettlement Administration was headed by Roosevelt’s advisor Rexford Guy Tugwell who developed the concept for Greenbelt, Maryland as well as its sister towns, Greendale, Wisconsin and Greenhills, Ohio.

The three planned cities were inspired by the Garden City Movement, which influenced American urban design in the early twentieth century. It was an approach to urban planning developed by Ebeneezer Howard in 1898.  Howard’s notion was to move the poor out to the countryside in order to reconnect with nature, while incorporating the use of green belts, agriculture, industry, housing, commercial and cultural places to spur the economy.

The Garden City Movement was applied to Greenbelt in several ways.  Topography was a factor in the site selection and design of Greenbelt in that the original city was formed by a crescent shaped piece of land with major roads on either side. Apartments and houses were constructed between the major roads.  Entrances to residences were comprised of one to a courtyard and one for vehicular access.  These concepts of walk-ability and courtyard living were popular because it provided a feeling of safety during a tumultuous period.

AIAS Event: Universal Design Awareness

The American Institute of Architects at the University of Maryland School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation is hosting a Universal Design Awareness event on Saturday February 25th in the great space.

To quote the poster, ” As the field of creative design adapts to the evolving needs of society, designers seek to accommodate those needs and to provide a comfortable & pleasant standard of living for all people. There exists a population among these people whose mobility is restricted as a result of a physical disability. We must consider the conditions and needs of those who are physically disabled and respond through our actions with design. But action starts with awareness. ”







Beauvoir, Beautiful to View

By Guest Blogger Lucinda Philumalee.

Beauvoir, Beautiful to View


When I attended my first University of Maryland Historic Preservation Organization (HiPO) meeting in the fall of 2008, the president conducted an icebreaker in which the group took turns introducing themselves and sharing their favorite historic site.  I had only been out of the South for two months so naturally I declared my love for Beauvoir, Jefferson Davis’s retirement plantation.

Beauvoir originally sat on a parcel of land of approximately 600 acres, which extended from the Gulf of Mexico to Back Bay Biloxi, Mississippi.  Since 1848, the property has decreased to a twelfth of its original size and although the visitor may still see the beach from the front porch, Highway 90 and its cars obstruct the view.  Although the raised Louisiana cottage still stands, even in lieu of Hurricanes Camille in 1969 and Katrina in 2005, a significant portion of Beauvior is unable to be experienced by the present visitor since the cultural landscape has been destroyed.

The elimination of outbuildings, forestry, and the orange grove (so often noted that a nearby town was named for it) decreased historical viewsheds, which in turn diminished the integrity of the visitor experience.  Historic preservation is not solely about the conservation of the built environment, but also about the natural site that surrounds it.  When an architect designs a structure, site analysis is a component of the process; therefore preservationists should take into account the thought behind that process and make all attempts to conserve a site, built and natural.

Study Abroad 2012 – Sri Lanka

Professor Lindley Vann took 20 students form the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation to Sri Lanka this past January. They travelled to various sights, and we get to see the trip as documented by a friend of Lindley’s – Dwight.  Check out his Blog, for super-saturated colors of Anuradhapura, Galle, the sunsets, the markets, even the traffic!

Interesting thoughts on the future of teaching and digital Scholarship

Happy New Year and welcome back to School.  Over the past few days I have been directed to some interesting websites, and I will share a couple with you here.

The first one is an NPR story that addresses a change from the lecture style of teaching, the so-called “sage on the stage” to the “guide from the side”.  It is thought that engaging the students in more active learning will help them actually retain information. 

The next article deals with digital scholarship, especially when issues of hiring, tenure and promotion come up in academia.

Digital scholarship is recognized as legitimate research, publishing and communication.  For those of you thinking about going into academia, or already in teaching and research, both articles will give you something to think about.

Prezi Helpful Hints

For those of you who missed the ‘How to use Prezi’ sessions, here are some links to information on building a strong Prezi. Start on the Prezi website and click on the learn tab. On that page there are video tutorials, as well as three sets of Cheat Sheets based on skill level.  The Cheat Sheets are very helpful.

This link shows you how to access and then move through a finished presentation:

This link shows a very well put together Prezi, used in a class presentation. Although 10 minutes long, it shows a great way to build a canvas, with strong flow, and good visual presentation.