Research

Writing and lectures on design and the built environment, physical and virtual.

Spatial Communication in Videogame Environments: Exploring, Enacting, Perceiving (MA Thesis)

This study explores how videogame environments can be designed to communicate ideas, emotions, and discourses through the spatial experiences that they afford players. It uses theories of embodied cognition to explore the structures of spatial experience and propose a means for analyzing built environments of all sorts, devoting chapters to analyses of spaces designed for exploration, for situated action, and for training perception. Download the PDF here.

Speaking Through Space: Analyzing Spatial Communication in Walking Simulators

A lecture I delivered at the 2018 Electronic Literature Organization conference, applying findings from the nascent field of Embodied Cognition to analyze the communicative potential of spaces in walking simulators. The videogame NaissanceE was the primary case study. Contact me if you’d like to see the slides and the written version.

Selective Spatiality: The Affordances of Architectural Drawing Types in 2D Games

I presented on this topic at the Canadian Game Studies Association conference in 2017. Contact me if you’d like to see the slides and the written version.

Sheltered + Exposed

I wrote a short article on northern architecture and urban design for the 2016 exhibition of the same name, put on by MADE. The article is mainly a set of case studies, looking at insights from the work of Ralph Erskine and Alvar and Aino Aalto, and from the winter festivals in Sapporo and Harbin. I planned the article with Lawrence Ly, but ended up being the primary author on it. Download the PDF here.

Reframing Library Architecture

Reframing Library Architecture is a heavily illustrated synthesis of my research into library design (conducted for my 2014 M.Arch thesis). The book takes a critical look at library architecture, situating it historically, analyzing how it functions as a communications medium, and proposing a future trajectory. Download the PDF here.

Gundam trashes Edmonton

A tongue-in-cheek article I wrote for the Guardian about the Gundam series using Edmonton as a backdrop.

Read it here.

Empathy and Videogames

I delivered a lecture on this topic to the Edmonton chapter of Creative Mornings in 2015 (empathy was the assigned topic of the month). The lecture begins by defining empathy, and proceeds to look at videogames as a spatial, ritualistic medium before concluding with 8 examples of small videogames that encourage empathy in a variety of contexts (often indirectly). View the lecture here.

Spatial Continuity in the Urban Realm

This article for Spacing magazine is a summary of some of my research on designing for renovation and the importance of maintaining a concrete link to earlier eras in the built environment. Unfortunately, the citations were removed from the published version; feel free to email me if you’d like them. Read the article here.

M.Arch Thesis: Reframing the Branch Library: Enhancing Communication for the Public Good

My Master of Architecture thesis explored public library design, proposing ways for the building to evolve and incorporate new technologies while supporting its communities. A PDF is available from Dalhousie University here, however I suggest reading Reframing Library Architecture instead, since it’s a more succinct and refined version of this same research.