blondie_b Builder Application

blondie_b

Street Preacher
What is your Minecraft username?
blondie_b

What is your age?
17-20

In what country are you living?
USA (California)

Where did you first hear about WesterosCraft?
Youtube

What do you like the most about GoT/ASoIaF?
I've been a fan since I was eleven, so it's been something that has heavily influenced my life. I love all of the side stories you can easily miss that make Westeros feel like a real place. I love the Lannisters just for how problematic they are. I also really love the food from ASoIaF and have the unofficial cookbook.

What is your favorite build on our server?
I love love love Highgarden. There's a section which the maze leads to that is full of upper-class houses, one of the houses alongside the river is my favorite. Susan is also a fav.

Why do you want to join our server?
I love the community here. I've been a part of the server for over a year now and always love how positive everyone is (even though I haven't really interacted with anyone until recently). I also would love to contribute to ASoIaF in any way since it really has changed the trajectory of my life.

back.pngceiling.pngfront.pngint1.pngint2.pngme'n'thehouse.pngrightside.pngside.pngsleeopver.png

Did you follow the application rules?
You know nothing, Jon Snow
 

Emoticone11

The Dark Lord Sauron
Hey blondie,

Glad to see you finally applied :) Deftly done with the application house; I don't really see any issues there.

For subsequent challenge builds, you'll be expected to build original houses of your own design, in the style of specific locations on our server. However, I recommend thinking of it similarly to the application house - except now, instead of simply replicating a house, you should try to replicate particular elements of multiple houses, and synthesize them into an original creation. After each one I'll give some feedback.

For the first challenge, please make a middle-class house in the style of /warp whitegrove, making sure to include a medium-sized yard. Let me know if you have any questions. Good luck!
 

blondie_b

Street Preacher
Hey blondie,

Glad to see you finally applied :) Deftly done with the application house; I don't really see any issues there.

For subsequent challenge builds, you'll be expected to build original houses of your own design, in the style of specific locations on our server. However, I recommend thinking of it similarly to the application house - except now, instead of simply replicating a house, you should try to replicate particular elements of multiple houses, and synthesize them into an original creation. After each one I'll give some feedback.

For the first challenge, please make a middle-class house in the style of /warp whitegrove, making sure to include a medium-sized yard. Let me know if you have any questions. Good luck!
Hey Emote!

I really enjoyed this project, here are some pictures of the build (sorry for the large quantity lol)
 
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Emoticone11

The Dark Lord Sauron
Hey blondie,

Very nice work with this house! The layout is creative but overall well executed, and you've definitely captured the Whitegrove style. The feedback I have below is largely technical stuff (which is a good place to be at at this stage):

- I'd revise this facade (and the equivalent one on the other side) a bit - the timber pattern feels a bit off with the row of empty frame blocks on the top row above the row of diagonal beam ones. If you're using wood planks for the gables, you also want a clear horizontal division between the gable and the timber pattern. Lastly, I'd perhaps use sparser supports under the overhang (like alternating stairs/slabs vs. hoppers). Overall, my suggested changes would look something like this. Note the change to vertical planks for the gable; it helps distinguish it from the roof a bit.

- Try to avoid extraneous detail like the row of stairs in the house here, or the wood stair blocks above the windows. It's usually better to just keep it simple. Sometimes it's acceptable to add more subtle and organic-looking weathering if you have a larger facade, like so, but make sure it's realistic and not unnecessary detail.

- Usually you would want to avoid 1x2 (horizontal) windows in normal houses; 1x1 and 2x1 (vertical) windows are typically more common and look better.

- The full wattle fence surrounding the staircase on this side is a bit overwhelming; I'd suggest something like this, with wattle fence used for the railing, but simple fence supports used under the staircase.

- Try to avoid making vines too patchy or sparse; you want to have them in larger, connected regions. You also want to make sure each region connects to soil somehow, since vines would have their roots in the ground and then grow upwards. See how I changed the vines in my facade suggestion (the first fb point) to see what I mean.

- The bottom floor ints look great! My only feedback there is that when using cabinet/bench blocks, you should make sure to cover all sides except for one using "half door" blocks or other furniture. That way it doesn't appear that the drawers open on multiple sides.

- Avoid using paintings anywhere except for very wealthy manses, manors, or castles. Due to the labour intensive nature of pigments and the skill involved in making paintings, they'd be very costly during this time period and generally only accessible to aristocracy.

- I would add rafters to the bottom side of the loft here (just occasional rows of upside-down stairs lining up with the vertical support(s) will do), as otherwise it seems too flat. It might make it seem slightly more cramped, but that should be fine as long as you balance it out with appropriately placed vertical supports so the proportions don't feel off.

- Make sure to use stairs/rafters on the underside of the ceiling here, so you don't have the chunky full blocks showing. I usually design the rafters of the top floor at the same time I design my floorplan, before doing the rest of the furnishing. Since how I decide to do the rafters will likely affect how I furnish that room.

- The garden looks nice! Don't think I have any feedback there.

Sorry if that seems like a lot! Overall you're doing well; like I said some of the feedback points are pickier than others. For the next challenge build, please make a medium-sized house in the style of /warp tortown. The gradient work here is pretty important, especially if you use plaster blocks in your house, so make sure to pay close attention to that. Let me know if you have any questions on anything; good luck!
 

blondie_b

Street Preacher
Hey blondie,

Very nice work with this house! The layout is creative but overall well executed, and you've definitely captured the Whitegrove style. The feedback I have below is largely technical stuff (which is a good place to be at at this stage):

- I'd revise this facade (and the equivalent one on the other side) a bit - the timber pattern feels a bit off with the row of empty frame blocks on the top row above the row of diagonal beam ones. If you're using wood planks for the gables, you also want a clear horizontal division between the gable and the timber pattern. Lastly, I'd perhaps use sparser supports under the overhang (like alternating stairs/slabs vs. hoppers). Overall, my suggested changes would look something like this. Note the change to vertical planks for the gable; it helps distinguish it from the roof a bit.

- Try to avoid extraneous detail like the row of stairs in the house here, or the wood stair blocks above the windows. It's usually better to just keep it simple. Sometimes it's acceptable to add more subtle and organic-looking weathering if you have a larger facade, like so, but make sure it's realistic and not unnecessary detail.

- Usually you would want to avoid 1x2 (horizontal) windows in normal houses; 1x1 and 2x1 (vertical) windows are typically more common and look better.

- The full wattle fence surrounding the staircase on this side is a bit overwhelming; I'd suggest something like this, with wattle fence used for the railing, but simple fence supports used under the staircase.

- Try to avoid making vines too patchy or sparse; you want to have them in larger, connected regions. You also want to make sure each region connects to soil somehow, since vines would have their roots in the ground and then grow upwards. See how I changed the vines in my facade suggestion (the first fb point) to see what I mean.

- The bottom floor ints look great! My only feedback there is that when using cabinet/bench blocks, you should make sure to cover all sides except for one using "half door" blocks or other furniture. That way it doesn't appear that the drawers open on multiple sides.

- Avoid using paintings anywhere except for very wealthy manses, manors, or castles. Due to the labour intensive nature of pigments and the skill involved in making paintings, they'd be very costly during this time period and generally only accessible to aristocracy.

- I would add rafters to the bottom side of the loft here (just occasional rows of upside-down stairs lining up with the vertical support(s) will do), as otherwise it seems too flat. It might make it seem slightly more cramped, but that should be fine as long as you balance it out with appropriately placed vertical supports so the proportions don't feel off.

- Make sure to use stairs/rafters on the underside of the ceiling here, so you don't have the chunky full blocks showing. I usually design the rafters of the top floor at the same time I design my floorplan, before doing the rest of the furnishing. Since how I decide to do the rafters will likely affect how I furnish that room.

- The garden looks nice! Don't think I have any feedback there.

Sorry if that seems like a lot! Overall you're doing well; like I said some of the feedback points are pickier than others. For the next challenge build, please make a medium-sized house in the style of /warp tortown. The gradient work here is pretty important, especially if you use plaster blocks in your house, so make sure to pay close attention to that. Let me know if you have any questions on anything; good luck!
hey emot! sorry it took so long, but here you go!
 

Emoticone11

The Dark Lord Sauron
Hey blondie,

Great work! These houses look pretty much up to standards. I also like that you've created a larger complex; having awareness of how a house fits into its surrounding context is definitely important and you've pulled it off well. I only have some minor points of feedback this time:

- You should use some stair blocks above the doorways, and optionally the ornate brick blocks above those, such as in this image. It helps make the space above the doorways a bit less chunky.

- The house should contain a space for preparing food (ignore this if you have a kitchen already that's not in the pictures).

- For a storage/pantry area like here, you can make the layout a bit more interesting by adding some organized storage units (like shelves or larger drawers/cabinets) and populating those with the food/crate/basket blocks. The houses at the Tor with professions on the bottom floor give some possible designs.

- The shared yard feels slightly underutilized currently; I think you can use the space a bit more by adding some small patches of veggies or herbs next to the cliff face.

For a tentative final challenge build, please make a middle-class house in the style of /warp duskendale. The style there is a bit more complex, so make sure to take your time and study it carefully, but I'm sure you'll do fine. Let me know if you've got any questions. Good luck!
 

blondie_b

Street Preacher
Hey blondie,

Great work! These houses look pretty much up to standards. I also like that you've created a larger complex; having awareness of how a house fits into its surrounding context is definitely important and you've pulled it off well. I only have some minor points of feedback this time:

- You should use some stair blocks above the doorways, and optionally the ornate brick blocks above those, such as in this image. It helps make the space above the doorways a bit less chunky.

- The house should contain a space for preparing food (ignore this if you have a kitchen already that's not in the pictures).

- For a storage/pantry area like here, you can make the layout a bit more interesting by adding some organized storage units (like shelves or larger drawers/cabinets) and populating those with the food/crate/basket blocks. The houses at the Tor with professions on the bottom floor give some possible designs.

- The shared yard feels slightly underutilized currently; I think you can use the space a bit more by adding some small patches of veggies or herbs next to the cliff face.

For a tentative final challenge build, please make a middle-class house in the style of /warp duskendale. The style there is a bit more complex, so make sure to take your time and study it carefully, but I'm sure you'll do fine. Let me know if you've got any questions. Good luck!
Hey Emot, here you go!
 

Emoticone11

The Dark Lord Sauron
Hey blondie,

Overall nice work! I like that you went for an interesting layout with a tower; the interiors are looking pretty good too. I do have a bit of feedback on this house however:

- The rooves in the DD style should all be peaked rather than flat/rounded on the top - most houses at DD have either the 60 degree slopes (where you alternate full block and stairs), plain 45 degree slopes, or 45 degree with the 'pinched' shape at the peak (where it's stairs up until the peak, where you have a full block and then wall). Likewise with the roof of the tower - my suggestion for the tower roof would be something like this.

- You should have the roof overhang on this side of the house; also I would stagger the supports under the second floor overhang a bit by using stair blocks rather than hoppers. Overall I'd recommend doing something like this house for that side.

- This side and this side feel a bit too bare currently. For the former side, I think you could probably add an overhang for the second story. In both cases, adding some foliage, subtle gradient work (like to represent dirty/corroded stone), and/or immersive street details should help do the trick.

- Though there are a couple houses in DD which use the carved northern wood, it's overall not a common material in the style - I'd probably use the 'spruce wood panelling' block for something a bit more vernacular.

- The interiors are well-done for the most part, though the bottom floor feels slightly empty in terms of furnishing; I don't think it needs any major changes, just perhaps thatch carpet/rushes where it would be appropriate, or some additional food preparation furnishings in the kitchen area. Also, since the house is a fishmonger profession, you should probably have a dedicated area for this job (as it would be fairly messy).

- Don't forget to have rafters to support the slate roof from underneath!

- I'd make sure to have some wood showing in the table on the second floor, as it looks a little weird to have it all cloth. Admittedly, it can be a bit tricky to represent tablecloth. Here are two designs that I would suggest trying, though.

I won't give another challenge build, however I do want to see a revised version of the house, improving on the points I mentioned above. I recommend spending some more time looking at houses in DD and incorporating some of the more subtle exterior/interior details, and maybe also adding some of the street details around the house since I think it was a strong point of your Tor submission (no need to do full houses, just add a bit of immediate context). Let me know if you have any questions!
 
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blondie_b

Street Preacher
Hey blondie,

Overall nice work! I like that you went for an interesting layout with a tower; the interiors are looking pretty good too. I do have a bit of feedback on this house however:

- The rooves in the DD style should all be peaked rather than flat/rounded on the top - most houses at DD have either the 60 degree slopes (where you alternate full block and stairs), plain 45 degree slopes, or 45 degree with the 'pinched' shape at the peak (where it's stairs up until the peak, where you have a full block and then wall). Likewise with the roof of the tower - my suggestion for the tower roof would be something like this.

- You should have the roof overhang on this side of the house; also I would stagger the supports under the second floor overhang a bit by using stair blocks rather than hoppers. Overall I'd recommend doing something like this house for that side.

- This side and this side feel a bit too bare currently. For the former side, I think you could probably add an overhang for the second story. In both cases, adding some foliage, subtle gradient work (like to represent dirty/corroded stone), and/or immersive street details should help do the trick.

- Though there are a couple houses in DD which use the carved northern wood, it's overall not a common material in the style - I'd probably use the 'spruce wood panelling' block for something a bit more vernacular.

- The interiors are well-done for the most part, though the bottom floor feels slightly empty in terms of furnishing; I don't think it needs any major changes, just perhaps thatch carpet/rushes where it would be appropriate, or some additional food preparation furnishings in the kitchen area. Also, since the house is a fishmonger profession, you should probably have a dedicated area for this job (as it would be fairly messy).

- Don't forget to have rafters to support the slate roof from underneath!

- I'd make sure to have some wood showing in the table on the second floor, as it looks a little weird to have it all cloth. Admittedly, it can be a bit tricky to represent tablecloth. Here are two designs that I would suggest trying, though.

I won't give another challenge build, however I do want to see a revised version of the house, improving on the points I mentioned above. I recommend spending some more time looking at houses in DD and incorporating some of the more subtle exterior/interior details, and maybe also adding some of the street details around the house since I think it was a strong point of your Tor submission (no need to do full houses, just add a bit of immediate context). Let me know if you have any questions!
Hey Emot, thank you for the feedback! Here is the link to the edited Duskendale build
 
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Emoticone11

The Dark Lord Sauron
Hey blondie,

This is on the right track - I think you fixed most of the issues I mentioned, and the interiors look properly immersive and 'lived in' now. However, there are still some issues with the roof. Namely, the split that you added in the middle looks very strange from this side, and also creates some problems for the interiors (there would have to be a wall there for that to structurally work). I can sort of see why you tried that though - I imagine you tried to make the roof 60 degrees but realized that the facade would end up pretty massive with that plot shape, and would also possibly intersect the tower weirdly.

I think you have a few options here, in order of increasing complexity:

1. Go back to doing a 45 degree roof like in the first version, but just make sure it's properly peaked at the top rather than being flat/curved at the top.

2. Give the full facade with a single 60 degree roof a try - it might not actually end up being that bad, if you add jettying (i.e. a second story overhang) on this side, add enough detail so it doesn't seem too plain (look at some larger Duskendale facades for ideas), and integrate the tower properly.

3. Keep the roof on the left side of the split the way it is (but give that facade a second story overhang), but change the roof on the right side to a slanted shed roof, going perpendicular to the main roof. Here's a quick sketch of what I mean. You'd still have to adjust the interiors a bit to support the middle part between the two roof segments, though. You can probably do this by adding a dividing wall (using half doors or something) to the left of the table here.

I'd probably experiment with each of these, and pick whichever seems the most promising - it's good practice anyways. Whichever option you choose, I recommend spending a bit more time on the rafters. You don't necessarily need to fully cover up all of the slate; just cover most of it and try as best you can to create realistic supports, like in this image. I recommend looking for other DD houses which have spacious second floor rooms or attics, and looking at the rafter designs they use.

Also, make sure the roof of the tower is properly peaked - take another look at the example I linked above.

I'll have you submit another revision, since I think it's good practice for the scenario where you run into a tricky plot shape and have to try a few options before finding something that works right - happens to everyone sometimes. Feel free to modify the house a bit more radically if you find that you need to in order to get the tower + roof to work together with the DD style.

If you're unsure about what I mean by any of the above, feel free to ask me in-game when I'm on and I can help try some stuff out.
 
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blondie_b

Street Preacher
Hey blondie,

This is on the right track - I think you fixed most of the issues I mentioned, and the interiors look properly immersive and 'lived in' now. However, there are still some issues with the roof. Namely, the split that you added in the middle looks very strange from this side, and also creates some problems for the interiors (there would have to be a wall there for that to structurally work). I can sort of see why you tried that though - I imagine you tried to make the roof 60 degrees but realized that the facade would end up pretty massive with that plot shape, and would also possibly intersect the tower weirdly.

I think you have a few options here, in order of increasing complexity:

1. Go back to doing a 45 degree roof like in the first version, but just make sure it's properly peaked at the top rather than being flat/curved at the top.

2. Give the full facade with a single 60 degree roof a try - it might not actually end up being that bad, if you add jettying (i.e. a second story overhang) on this side, add enough detail so it doesn't seem too plain (look at some larger Duskendale facades for ideas), and integrate the tower properly.

3. Keep the roof on the left side of the split the way it is (but give that facade a second story overhang), but change the roof on the right side to a slanted shed roof, going perpendicular to the main roof. Here's a quick sketch of what I mean. You'd still have to adjust the interiors a bit to support the middle part between the two roof segments, though. You can probably do this by adding a dividing wall (using half doors or something) to the left of the table here.

I'd probably experiment with each of these, and pick whichever seems the most promising - it's good practice anyways. Whichever option you choose, I recommend spending a bit more time on the rafters. You don't necessarily need to fully cover up all of the slate; just cover most of it and try as best you can to create realistic supports, like in this image. I recommend looking for other DD houses which have spacious second floor rooms or attics, and looking at the rafter designs they use.

Also, make sure the roof of the tower is properly peaked - take another look at the example I linked above.

I'll have you submit another revision, since I think it's good practice for the scenario where you run into a tricky plot shape and have to try a few options before finding something that works right - happens to everyone sometimes. Feel free to modify the house a bit more radically if you find that you need to in order to get the tower + roof to work together with the DD style.

If you're unsure about what I mean by any of the above, feel free to ask me in-game when I'm on and I can help try some stuff out.
Hey Emot, hopefully, third time's the charm
 
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Emoticone11

The Dark Lord Sauron
Hey blondie,

Nice work, the full 45 degree roof does help a lot! There are still a couple issues which I'll briefly point out, just so you're aware of them going forward:

- The roof seems to have some full blocks mixed in with the stairs; you should just use stair blocks except for the peak of the roof.

- The tower still feels a little bit awkward; mainly how the roof is a bit top-heavy and the curve is concave (i.e. upside-down bowl shape) rather than convex (i.e. curving upwards to a pointed spire).

I think at this point though, you'd probably learn much quicker interactively during your probation stage - I know doing feedback over the forums like this can be difficult for visual learners. So, consider yourself approved! :)

I've promoted you in-game. The next step is to read over the New Builder guide, found here: https://westeroscraft.com/wiki/guides/new-builders-guide
And also make yourself a probation thread in the probation forum.

You can start building at any open locations on the server - you can find these at /warp build (possibly outdated as people forget to update it sometimes), and also by going to our dynmap and toggling "Open Plot", which is a new feature that we're testing, or otherwise just asking around to see which builds are open. Also, you can ask a mod to set you up with a plot in the Test world.

A probie leader should post on your thread within a week or so, give constructive feedback on your houses for the next month, and help be your entrypoint into the server community in general. As sometimes the probie leaders can be busy IRL, I also highly suggest seeking out feedback from project leaders and other online builders. At the end, you'll be made full builder.

Welcome to the team, I look forward to building with you! :D