Dave was my professor for the entirety of last year in studio. For those of you who are either not a part of architecture and/or have no idea what studio is... well, it's a class. It's the most fun course that an architecture kid could take, but at the same time it's the most demanding, stressful, exhausting, confusing, difficult course EVER. But I think that's what I love about it -- the challenge, the excitement of new ideas coming into your head and the long long nights shared with many a colleague overnight in the studio. You never realize that you've been there so long until the sun comes up again... and you soon realize that you're walking to the dining hall on zero hours of sleep, hoping some cafeteria coffee will wake you the fuck up, while so many others are well rested, dressed crisply and appropriately, happily heading to class on a full night's sleep.
But that's who we are, and that's what we do.
Dave Lee's course was no exception. Last year was the most challenging year I have ever had in school. Similarly, the second semester was the hardest half year I've ever had... But I don't regret any of it, and I don't regret choosing (twice) to take the hardest most demanding studio teacher that existed for the second year.
I'm hoping that it will help prepare me for the rest of my architectural life, and it will be a solid reminder that I can get through something, even if I have to set my self on overdrive through the night.
For those of us who had the privilege of being in Dave's section, we watched him change from a strict student to an encouraging and demanding professor -- but there was also the presence of a friend. It was like watching ice melt. And nothing can ever replace that. To a lot of us, he was a legend of sorts, and we often quoted things that he said that were amusing, entertaining, or inspiring. Sometimes it was as simple as reenacting ridiculous situations that came up in studio.
Dave was also a mastermind behind a computer... he practically was a computer himself. His knowledge of the digital architectural world is truly astounding and he works so fast, and always can find the solution to your complicated mess that you've gotten yourself into. He pushed us to use the programs that were more difficult, but had more opportunities. He forced us to experiment with unique design concepts and make those concepts come to life through the programs. Why limit yourself to the simplicities provided in something like Google SketchUp?
Dave may be tough, and he may grade tough, and there may be some flaws. But he's one of those teachers that I will never forget. I value everything I've learned from him, and though it's so hard realizing I won't be able to take his class anymore, I know that it is important to broaden my professorial influences so that I can have the most diverse ideas and techniques implemented into my head.
Basically, Dave Lee is the man. End of story.