Assistant Architect by Xi He Qing Ling
Chapter 20: Patch
The biggest project Zhang Siyi has ever been connected to was a ten-thousand square meter commercial office building. All he has done on these projects is draw core functions and now suddenly, in front of him appears a hectare unit planning project. He was scared silly.
Tong Heyi said: “From tonight onwards for a total of two and a half days, the two groups need to compete to develop early plot analysis, and planning function positions. After seven days, the Board of Directors will evaluate the work and select a plan to move forward with.
Zhang Siyi was hit by a lightning. Time was already so tight. Why did they have to come out with two sets of plans? Can’t everyone work together to make one set? Everyone did not hear his inner roar and Instead were all eager to try. Thus, for the next 20 days Zhang Siyi witnessed twisted faces that were happy.
Gu Yu said: “The upcoming days will be very hard. Prepare yourself mentally for many hours of overtime.”
After explaining the basic situation of the project, Gu Yu and Tong Heyi respectively designated their respective project team leaders.
Gu Yu points to Ji Feiyu. He is only one year younger than Gu Yu. Although he is not a “one note”, he has relatively rich work experience.
Tong Heyi also chose a young man who looks more mature, called Peng Shuang.
The two groups are waiting for their respective division of labor. Tong Heyi suddenly looked at Zhang Siyi: “Hey, wait, the little guy, he is the British C graduate?”
Zhang Siyi stunned and hurriedly bowed. Tong Heyi extended her index finger and pointed for Zhang Siyi to join his team. He smiled and asked: “Since the analysis of the previous period is two groups of cooperation, do you want to work with Tom in our group? I think you will get along great.”
She was referring to a short foreigner with golden brown hair and grey blue eyes named Tom. Although he is a foreigner, he doesn’t stand out when mixed with a group of Chinese people.
Just listening to Tong Heyi and Gu Yu’s whole project Zhang Siyi wasn’t scared. Tom was just as arrogant as Zhang Siyi, but he did not understand Chinese, so he was sitting there silly and waiting for someone to translate. Zhang Siyi looked to Tom, forced on the enemy, and felt empathy……
Zhang Siyi was flattered and was trying to take up the olive branch that Tong Heyi had thrown, but he heard a voice saying, “No,” Gu Yu held his arm and refused for him without expression. “He is in my department, if he goes to group B, he will be lazy.”
Tong Heyi chuckled with a smile: “Hey, ok. Since it won’t work out.”
Zhang Siyi had a moment to fly freely but was brutally swatted to the group by Gu Yu.
Then, Gu Yu and Tong Heyi discussed some details about the project background with the two than immediately began to distribute the work.
Zhang Siyi is a newcomer. Ji Feiyu does not know what work Gu Yu’s has in mind for him. After all this matter is urgent and everyone needs to use the time more efficiently. For this reason, he specially asked Gu Yu: “Boss Gu, what will Zhang Siyi be doing?”
Gu Yu: “Patch.”
Ji Feiyu: “uh…”
Zhang Siyi A little confused, patch? What the hell is that?
Gu Yu did not explain it and told everyone to get to work immediately. They will meet again at 9 o’clock that night.
Zhang Siyi didn’t think he was going to work overtime this evening! Out of the conference room, he whispered to Zhu Hongzhen: “What is the patch?”
Zhu Hongzhen looked at him sympathetically, whispered: “Miscellaneous work. You help where it is needed.””
Zhang Siyi: “…” status is so low, it’s better to do an analysis with Tom brother!
The task assignment soon came down, and Zhang Siyi was asked to find a map of the location of the project, from a wide range to a small range of progression, and to do basic gray processing, and then collect local historical and cultural information, summed up into the main points … Sure enough, it was all the chores that some junior high school students were capable of.
Once this information is collected, Zhang Siyi only needs to upload the information to the project team within the company. With the shared network, people who need information can access it for their own reference.
Since the job of the ‘Patch’ person is so fragmented, there isn’t much connection with each assigned task. Seeing everyone so busy, Zhang Siyi is curious about what the others are doing.
Taking advantage of a break, Zhang Siyi slid the chair over and looked at Zhu Hongzhen’s screen. He saw the other party building a base model. Drawing the model isn’t anything special but he only looked at the work for a minute and Zhang Siyi felt stupid.
Because the rate at which Zhu Hongzhen is building the model is so fast, Zhang Siyi is surprised. His fat hands move the mouse on the right and his left on the keyboard to create the model. In a blink of an eye, the blocks have risen as if growing on their own and establishing a forest. Zhang Siyi secretly admires the ability of his honest, fat desk-mate.
He watched for a while, then went around to see what Bi Lele and Yuan Zhicheng were doing. Bi Lele was quickly browsing a set of color matching tables. In the background her program was opened, and she was mumbling to herself “waterfront, riverside, coastal, water, water, water… light blue… …grey blue…”
“#…” She reported a set of color codes, repeatedly stressed, “blue, gray blue…”
On the side, Yuan Zhicheng, who was picking up an aqua, green color, looked up and glanced at the color chart on Bi Lele’s screen then scoffed, “tell me earlier”, threw the pen to his pencil case in order to find a few gradient blues, then continued to draw.
The project planned is for the “Riverside Special Economic Zone”. Zhang Siyi understands the main theme of this project is water and Bi Lele is currently working on color concepts.
The architectural design is the building itself. The finished product should represent the harmonious shape and function for the area. Just like a natural beautiful woman who has no need for makeup and costume to capture the eye. Therefore, its considered taboo for professionals to use fancy displays, and high-force text design. Its main color tone will never be more than a few. This kind of monochromatic aesthetic of black, white and grey is what many architects use. Also, presetting the main base color can significantly unify the pre-analysis charts and sketch tones to reduce duplication.
The simultaneous cooperation with Bi Lele and Yuan Zhicheng has been quite amazing. Zhang Siyi was mesmerized by Yuan Zhicheng ability to draw.
By only looking at the scenic photos Zhang Siyi found for reference, Yuan Zhicheng is quickly able to capture the essence of the images and incorporate it into the design plans. With a few pens’ lines and sweeping motions, a scene unfolds like magic. Light blue clouds floating in the sky with architectural perspective, shadows and highlights all give rise to a life-like interpretation of the project. There is no question the talent of the colleague who graduated from a fine arts school.
It is no wonder that Du Rui said his drawings were beautiful. Yuan Zhicheng’s picture were works of art to enjoy in a museum. Looking at them motivated Zhang Siyi to practice drawing.
Zhang Siyi asked, “You are drawing so many pictures at once. Are you going to use them all?”
Yuan Zhicheng didn’t have time to lift head, and he quickly said: “The more you draw the more you will have to pick.”
Zhang Siyi: “Isn’t that wasteful?”
Yuan Zhicheng: “Which drawing is a waste? The process of drawing itself is the creative aspect that stimulates us. Maybe the next picture will lead to more inspiration, right?”
Like the sun shining through dark clouds on a rainy day, Zhang Siyi is reminded of his college professors teaching. The soul of creativity is to just do. Design, work, draw, write, think… inspiration will follow.
As he spoke, Tom in Group B came over, and he smiled at Zhang Siyi, then said to Bi Lele in broken Chinese: “This, the picture, diagram.”
Zhang Siyi helped translate and Tom was very grateful. He immediately explained in English the drawing he completed was the green analysis map and the main street analysis map of the plot.
“Oh! I understand! Aunt Four, you are free? Can you help me scan Tom’s drawings?” Bi Lele handed the drawings to Zhang Siyi.
Zhang Siyi took the papers to the copier. Standing there while waiting, he flipped through the analysis chart of Tom’s drawing. After reading it, the only capital he was proud of was burned and beaten. Zhang Siyi felt woefully inadequate.
At 6: 30 p.m., the team leaders called the members of the project to the dining area to have dinner. Zhang Siyi put down the work at hand and went over to eat. Since most everyone felt pressured and rushed, they took their meals back to their desks to work while eating dinner.
Feeling like a small fry, Zhang Siyi’s isn’t in a hurry. Ji Feiyu passed him, nodded, then let him continue eating slowly.
After Zhang Siyi sat down, he saw Gu Yu and Tong Heyi together not far away. They were discussing the project while eating. The words “land and resources administration” and “government planning instructions” were all words that Zhang Siyi had never heard of.
Zhang Siyi was very upset. He felt like a small boat floating in the sea and the breeze takes him wherever it goes without purpose and meaning of existence.
Feeling dispirited, Zhang Siyi with his head down walked up to the bin to throw his trash away. When he looked up, he saw Gu Yu looking at him thoughtfully as if he had been observing him for a long time. His eyes were straightforward, examining. When the two men’s eyes met, Zhang Siyi was a little embarrassed, but Gu Yu calmly turned away.
Zhang Siyi felt like he had to sneak back to work. He knew that Gu Yu kept track of all his subordinates, but this was the first time he discovered that he was being watched. It made him feel very nervous.
… Is there something that I have not done yet? Is Gu Yu dissatisfied with his performance? Should he have taken his meal to his desk too? Zhang Siyi shook his head, and immediately took the initiative to find Ji Feiyu for more patch work.
At 9 o’clock in the evening, everyone gathered in the conference room for the meeting. Ji Feiyu and Peng Shuang led the discussion and reported to the group.
Zhang Siyi looked at the analysis of both the background and current situation of the project, as well as the city development of the current plot in just a few hours. Not only has ten people almost completed half of the preliminary analysis work, but also made a power-point presentation thanks to Bi Lele. Zhang Siyi is so stunned!
At this moment, Zhang Siyi discovered that he was not on a small boat but a huge battleship lead by Gu Yu and Tong Heyi. All the talented people here were together for a common goal and ready to set sail.
Gu Yu continued some comments: “There is another problem. The city of Z is currently in a state of high construction. The photos that can be found online aren’t necessarily accurate. Since there are likely changes to the area, we need to go to the scene as soon as possible to conduct site inspections and document the area.” The crowd looked at each other, and everyone’s workload was so much currently, that they couldn’t spare any time at all.
Gu Yu frowned, looked at everyone in the group, then looked at the most idle person, Zhang Siyi and asked: “Do you have a camera?”
Zhang Siyi: “uhm yes…”
Gu Yu: “What brand?
Zhang Siyi thought that Gu Yu wanted to borrow a camera and immediately reported the model and lens: “Canon 5d2, ef24-105, ef70-200.”
A boy who understands photography exclaimed: “nouveau riche!”
Gu Yu nodded and said: “Go back home and prepare your camera and bag. You will come with me tomorrow morning and fly to the city. I’ll make a reservation for the ticket at night and tell you the time later.”
Zhang Siyi: “…”