Photographer: Paul DyerThe Diane Middlebrook Writers' Cabins, at the Djerassi Resident Artists Program in rural Woodside, California, consists of four sleep/work cabins designed with sustainable features, including a freestanding, pre-engineered steel roof assembly that carries solar panels. The new structures are designed for month-long residencies by writers, poets, composers and playwrights. They will increase the program's capacity by 50 percent.The studios, arrayed under the steel canopy, are sited to maximize the spectacular setting in the rural Santa Cruz Mountains overlooking the Pacific Ocean. These are the first structures to have been purpose-built for the artist program. All are aimed at the southern and western views but skewed a few degrees from each other, giving the arrangement a looseness that contrasts with the linear rigidity of the roof. Clad in unfinished, red cedar boards that will age over time, the cabins feature large, sliding glass doors and private outdoor spaces. Rectangular holes in the steel canopy create patterns of sun and shadows and align with skylights in the cabins, giving each unit a window to the sky.The cabins were designed to foster the creative process but also create a micro-community for the writers within the ranch. With visual and acoustical privacy, each has its own epic view and stand in close proximity under a unifying roof.The 280-sf cabins are compact to minimize the impact on the land. The architect partially donated their design services, and supplied the carpet and porcelain bath tiles from samples collected in their office over the years. Materials range in color, pattern and texture and were composed in the field to create a different scheme for each unit.The architect adhered to the Build It Green program's established GreenPoint Rating system, which is the standard for San Mateo County, achieving a rating of 87 points.