where do we start?


Often as architects we are asked how we start a design. What do we do first? (read this)

I didn’t know how to answer that question as even this post came at the last minute.

20180205_212306.jpgSure, you’ll read articles, blogs (see my friends’ responses), and a series of other attempts to get at this elusive concept of design – to create from nothing, to create from something.

20180205_212325.jpgPerhaps you’ll read about gathering information, interviews, site visits, programming, studies, tests, field measuring, various forms of analysis or some other objective, fact finding methods. Then there’ll be something about sketching, scribbling, or some other intangible searching mechanism. Maybe you’ll read of magic; maybe you’ll stop reading.

20180205_212228.jpgDo we do those things? Perhaps.

20180205_212647.jpgWhat do I do?

To be honest, I wish I knew. I just start looking.

Yet after all these years, I have no idea.

20180205_212459.jpgIt’s never the same two designs in a row or two days in a row.

Read my friends’ take on this subject. I think they have more answers.

Matthew Stanfield – FiELD9: architecture (@FiELD9arch)
Slow Down. Hold Still.

Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
How to Start a Design

Jeremiah Russell, AIA – ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
Starting a Design: #Architalks

Eric T. Faulkner – Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
On Your Mark, Get Set — Start a Design!

Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
.”starting a design…”..

Meghana Joshi – IRA Consultants, LLC (@MeghanaIRA)
Architalks #35: Starting a Design

Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
Where do we begin?

Jeffrey Pelletier – Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Where do you start when designing a new home?

Keith Palma – Architect’s Trace (@cogitatedesign)
do-re-mi- Design

Jim Mehaffey – Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
First Thing’s First

Mark Stephens – Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
How it all begins…

Steve Mouzon – The Original Green Blog (@stevemouzon)
Starting Wrong – The Amazon Mistake


where do we start?

2 thoughts on “where do we start?

  1. Beautiful hand, Lee! FWIW, I faced the empty page many times early in my career, but over the past 20 years, I’ve found great usefulness in building types, and in regional character, which make great starting points. They both make my work smoother, because I’m not forever confronted with the Sisyphean task of creating something out of nothing each day. Not only that, but the resulting design is much more likely to feel as if it’s a good neighbor in its context.

    1. Steve, thank you; I appreciate it. Sometimes it does feel like rolling a rock up a hill, but I’m always searching for how something works more than any preconceived style too. I have my preferences, but I try to lay those aside too to be a good neighbor. In some parts of my town, where I have be commissioned to do several projects, there is little ‘good’ context, so hopefully we begin to set up something that could build over time. We could do with some of your lectures in my region!

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