Digital Drawings and Library
Face Me is an open-source library created for the SketchUp Warehouse to integrate real people doing real things into the architectural design process.
SketchUp is free architectural design software used commonly in education and by young designers and hobbyists alike. It is entry-level software supported by a global community who supplies tutorials and assets to its open source library, the Warehouse.
Because SketchUp caters to a wider range of designers, it supplies a human figure—a “Face Me Component” for scale, dutifully standing at ease at the 0,0,0 coordinates. With every new version of the software, the figure changes, but so far has more often than not taken the form of a white male, aged 25-50, in casual Friday clothing, embedding heteronormative male politics into the fabric of every design project. These figures become the unspoken subject for spatial design, and the templated population expressed in final renderings.
The library’s diverse series of bodies represents the spectrum of bodies and activities unseen or unrepresented in spatial design. As potential Face Me Components and figures for building renderings, they challenge the values and beliefs that predominate the field. Students of architecture and practicing architects are invited to contemplate and use these open-source figures towards more inclusive constructed environments.