Architecture – Studio Sessions
Written by Laura, 3rd year Architecture Student
“Hi, my name is Laura and I’m in my third year, studying Architecture. I’m originally from Germany but moved to Manchester in 2019. I wanted to share with you what my typical studio sessions at the Manchester School of Architecture (MSA) look like.
To start this post off: What even are studio sessions? When coming to the MSA, you will be allocated into a small group of 10 – 20 people with 2 tutors. This group will be your studio group for the first semester and changes after. Studio sessions take place in the Chatham Building that is joined with the Manchester School of Art making it a creative place where different art-related disciplines are encouraged to work together and inspire each other. We have 8 floors of studio spaces that are open for everyone to use, everyone from Undergraduate to Postgraduate works on their projects in these studios also outside of their typical Studio days. One day of the week (10 am – 5 pm) is typically allocated for studio sessions, and this is the time when you develop your projects further together with your peers and tutors through small group and individual sessions as well as workshops. In the first year, there is a lot of experimental and hands-on exercises such as 5-10-30 min sketch models, shadow tracing, and various drawing exercises that enhance and develop your work further. Some time of the day usually 15 – 20 min are allocated for individual time with your tutor where you can ask any questions you might have about your ongoing projects. Luckily our studio sessions have been in person again, with a hybrid system in place when people cannot join physically, making it a lot more fun!
What I most enjoy about studio sessions is the atmosphere and togetherness of the whole day! It gives me time to look at my project from a completely different angle and get input and help from my colleagues. Studio days are not only reserved for work though but to promote the togetherness of the group aspect. We all go for lunch to the Union and get together afterward to go to the pub. Your studio group will essentially become your little family for the year! The Studio unit ends with a finished project visualised in form of a portfolio that will be assessed and graded by your studio tutors each semester. The portfolio contains all the work you have done sketches, models, collages, videos, etc. anything goes to show who you are and showcase your proposal. The year ends with 2 portfolios for 2 projects as well as 1 final exhibition piece that will be exhibited at the end of the year show.”